A Homemade Slideshow featuring the lyrics to the song Come, Now is the Time to Worship. ENJOY!!!
If I am being poured out as a drink offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all. —Philippians 2:17
Are you willing to sacrifice yourself for the work of another believer—to pour out your life sacrificially for the ministry and faith of others? Or do you say, “I am not willing to be poured out right now, and I don’t want God to tell me how to serve Him. I want to choose the place of my own sacrifice. And I want to have certain people watching me and saying, ‘Well done.’ ”
It is one thing to follow God’s way of service if you are regarded as a hero, but quite another thing if the road marked out for you by God requires becoming a “doormat” under other people’s feet. God’s purpose may be to teach you to say, “I know how to be abased…” (Philippians 4:12). Are you ready to be sacrificed like that? Are you ready to be less than a mere drop in the bucket— to be so totally insignificant that no one remembers you even if they think of those you served? Are you willing to give and be poured out until you are used up and exhausted— not seeking to be ministered to, but to minister? Some saints cannot do menial work while maintaining a saintly attitude, because they feel such service is beneath their dignity.
Is He going to help Himself to your life, or are you taken up with your conception of what you are going to do? God is responsible for our lives, and the one great keynote is reckless reliance upon Him. Approved Unto God, 10 R
I am already being poured out as a drink offering… —2 Timothy 4:6
Are you ready to be poured out as an offering? It is an act of your will, not your emotions. Tell God you are ready to be offered as a sacrifice for Him. Then accept the consequences as they come, without any complaints, in spite of what God may send your way. God sends you through a crisis in private, where no other person can help you. From the outside your life may appear to be the same, but the difference is taking place in your will. Once you have experienced the crisis in your will, you will take no thought of the cost when it begins to affect you externally. If you don’t deal with God on the level of your will first, the result will be only to arouse sympathy for yourself.
“Bind the sacrifice with cords to the horns of the altar” (Psalm 118:27). You must be willing to be placed on the altar and go through the fire; willing to experience what the altar represents— burning, purification, and separation for only one purpose— the elimination of every desire and affection not grounded in or directed toward God. But you don’t eliminate it, God does. You “bind the sacrifice…to the horns of the altar” and see to it that you don’t wallow in self-pity once the fire begins. After you have gone through the fire, there will be nothing that will be able to trouble or depress you. When another crisis arises, you will realize that things cannot touch you as they used to do. What fire lies ahead in your life?
Tell God you are ready to be poured out as an offering, and God will prove Himself to be all you ever dreamed He would be.
If a man cannot prove his religion in the valley, it is not worth anything. Shade of His Hand, 1200 L
2 Corinthians 5:6-8
In the Christian community, we often hear the term faith. However, when such a word is used frequently, it can become so familiar that we grow immune to its great depth of meaning. Today let’s consider what faith actually entails.
All people have faith. For example, it takes a measure of confidence to sit down in a kitchen chair without first testing its strength. Yet belief in the fact that furniture will hold our weight is quite different from entrusting our life to almighty God. A wrong judgment concerning the first may result in a physical bruise, whereas the latter determines not only our success in this life but also our eternal destination.
So what, exactly, is a biblical definition of faith? Hebrews 11:1 tells us that it is “the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” And we know that it is impossible to please the Lord without faith (Heb. 11:6). In fact, there is nothing we can do that will earn salvation; the only way to heaven is by having confidence in Jesus’ substitutionary, sacrificial death on the cross, which paid the penalty we owed for our sin. What’s more, faith is nothing we can create within ourselves; Scripture is clear that it is a gift of God (Eph. 2:8).
Have you accepted the heavenly Father’s gift of faith and embarked on the wonderful journey that He invites you to share with Him? God responds to searching hearts. If you are unclear whether you have trusted your life to Him with full confidence, ask Him to guide you and reveal truth.
“For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb.” (Luke 1:15)
Whether or not the Bible clearly commands total abstinence from alcohol for Christians, it is increasingly being recognized that alcohol is the most widely abused and dangerous drug of all—causing more fatal accidents and injuries, more broken homes, more sexual promiscuity, more job absenteeism, and more disease than cocaine or any other drug. Yet it is widely promoted socially and increasingly is being accepted even among evangelical Christians.
But the example of John the Baptist is worth considering. The angel Gabriel testified that he would be “great in the sight of the Lord” and then added that he would “drink neither wine nor strong drink,” implying a connection between the two. Indeed, Christ called John the greatest man who had ever lived up to that time (Matthew 11:11)—that is, greater than even Abraham, Moses, or Daniel!
Then the very same verse says that John would “be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb,” and he is the only man of whom that was ever said. Again there seems to be a connection, for no one could simultaneously drink wine or strong drink and also be filled with the Spirit. The apostle Paul also warned concerning this conflict when he said: “Be not drunk [literally, ‘begin to be drunk’] with wine . . . but be filled [that is, ‘be continually being filled’] with the Spirit” (Ephesians 5:18).
Drinking alcoholic beverages in moderation may or may not be permissible, but that does not make it right. “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient” (1 Corinthians 6:12). At least in John’s case, being great in God’s sight and being filled with the Spirit were closely associated with abstinence from alcohol. HMM
Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. —Psalm 46:10
Our fathers had much to say about stillness, and by stillness they meant the absence of motion or the absence of noise or both.
They felt that they must be still for at least a part of the day, or that day would be wasted. God can be known in the tumult of the world if His providence has for the time placed us there, but He is known best in the silence. So they held, and so the sacred Scriptures declare. Inward assurance comes out of the stillness. We must be still to know.
There has hardly been another time in the history of the world when stillness was needed more than it is today, and there has surely not been another time when there was so little of it or when it was so hard to find.
Lord, in today’s world stillness is so rare but so needed. Quiet my world even for these few moments and speak to me in the stillness, I pray. Amen.
Then said Jesus… And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. (John 8:31-32)
Let me say boldly that it is not the difficulty of discovering truth, but the unwillingness to obey it, that makes it so rare among men.
Our Lord said, “I am the Truth.” And again He said, “The Son of Man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Truth, therefore, is not hard to find for the very reason that it is seeking us!
So we learn that Truth is not a thing for which we must search, but a Person to whom we must hearken! In the New Testament, multitudes came to Jesus for physical help, but only rarely did one seek Him out to learn the Truth. The whole picture in the gospels is one of a seeking Savior, not one of seeking men.
The Truth was hunting for those who would receive it, and relatively few did, for “many are called, but few are chosen.”
The gospel is the sum of wisdom; an epitome of knowledge; a treasure-house of truth; and a revelation of mysterious secrets. Our meditation upon it enlarges the mind; and as it opens to our soul in successive flashes of glory, we stand astonished at the profound wisdom manifest in it. Ah, dear friends! if ye seek wisdom, ye shall see it displayed in all its greatness. But turn aside and see this great sight—an incarnate God upon the cross; a substitute atoning for mortal guilt: a sacrifice satisfying the vengeance of Heaven, and delivering the rebellious sinner. Here is essential wisdom; enthroned, crowned, glorified.