VIDEO I Stand In Awe

Isaiah 40.25-26

This Scripture has always been a blessing to me. It speaks to my soul in great ways to know that the God who created the heavens and earth and the fullness thereof, did not create the heavens and the earth and abandon them.

The Lord is still active in His creation. So much so that He still has a count of the stars and calls all [each] of them by name.

Isaiah 40.stars

Just look…behold all the stars! WOW!

Yea, I know that man has put some names to God’s work but the Lord knows the names He has given each star. See that one in the upper right corner? Yea, that itty bitty one…yes, that one as well. God cares that much about His creation!
Oh my, it just fell to the earth along with some others located clear across the planet…but not to worry, God still knows the names and the count. Absolutely awesome and amazing that the Great God I Am is watching over His universe to this degree!

This causes me to meditate and ask God why did He include Isaiah 40:25-26 in His Holy Scriptures? What does He want to know about Himself through this great creation? Surely, He is the Almighty God?

Jeremiah 32:17 declares, “Ah, Lord GOD! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm!  Nothing is too hard for you.”  Jeremiah 10:12 adds, “It is He who made the earth by His power,  who established the world by His wisdom, and by His understanding stretched out the heavens.”

The Genesis 1 account of creation tells us that when God created the sun, the moon, the stars, the planets, the creatures, cattle, the plants, etc. individually He declared that it was good. BUT when He created man and woman, God’s creation was declared  to be “very good.” WOW!

It is in this that I just stand back and behold the grace, mercy, and goodness of the Great and Almighty God of “so love.” He remains active in His “very good” creation for He has a divine purpose and plan for His children. The ones He loved so much that He gave His only, special, unique Son that no matter how far we fall. Unlike the stars, we can rise to eternal, abundant life in Christ as we believe and receive His sacrificial death to pay the wage of our sins and His resurrection power for our lives. More than WOW, the right word is HALLELUJAH! The right response is loving Him with all our hearts, all our souls, all our minds, and all our strength…proven in the overflow of obedience and worship.

When I see the stars, I am reminded of the Lord’s great love and care for His children. Matthew 10:29-31, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” 

Isaiah 40.25-26B

“Not Resentful” – Beware of Criticizing Others

“Not Resentful”

Resentment kills a fool, and envy slays the simple. Job 5:2 (NIV)

The word resentment comes from the Latin term sentire, which means “to feel.” When you put the “re-” in front of it, it means “to feel again.” When someone offends us, we feel anger or shame. As we recall the event, we keep dredging up those emotions, and they harden into resentment. Sometimes the memories get stuck in our heads and we replay them over and over. When this happens, it destroys love, tears down marriages, ruins friendships, and devastates our internal peace of mind.

If that’s happening to you, study how Paul advised Timothy to handle his conflicts with false teachers: “Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful” (2 Timothy 2:23-24, NIV).

We can’t avoid feelings of anger when we’re offended or hurt, and it takes time to process difficult emotions. But don’t replay the offense over and over in your mind. Give the hurt to the Lord, learn to release the bitterness, and uproot resentment before it uproots you.

Resentment makes us permanently angry; it carves deep lines on our faces. It adds a heaviness to our very steps. This is no way to live. David Jeremiah

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Beware of Criticizing Others

Judge not, that you be not judged. —Matthew 7:1

Jesus’ instructions with regard to judging others is very simply put; He says, “Don’t.” The average Christian is the most piercingly critical individual known. Criticism is one of the ordinary activities of people, but in the spiritual realm nothing is accomplished by it. The effect of criticism is the dividing up of the strengths of the one being criticized. The Holy Spirit is the only one in the proper position to criticize, and He alone is able to show what is wrong without hurting and wounding. It is impossible to enter into fellowship with God when you are in a critical mood. Criticism serves to make you harsh, vindictive, and cruel, and leaves you with the soothing and flattering idea that you are somehow superior to others. Jesus says that as His disciple you should cultivate a temperament that is never critical. This will not happen quickly but must be developed over a span of time. You must constantly beware of anything that causes you to think of yourself as a superior person.

There is no escaping the penetrating search of my life by Jesus. If I see the little speck in your eye, it means that I have a plank of timber in my own (see Matthew 7:3-5). Every wrong thing that I see in you, God finds in me. Every time I judge, I condemn myself (see Romans 2:17-24). Stop having a measuring stick for other people. There is always at least one more fact, which we know nothing about, in every person’s situation. The first thing God does is to give us a thorough spiritual cleaning. After that, there is no possibility of pride remaining in us. I have never met a person I could despair of, or lose all hope for, after discerning what lies in me apart from the grace of God.

Defenders of the faith are inclined to be bitter until they learn to walk in the light of the Lord. When you have learned to walk in the light of the Lord, bitterness and contention are impossible. Biblical Psychology, 199 R

OSWALD CHAMBERS

Faith Versus Intellect

1 Corinthians 1:18-25

In Paul’s day, unbelievers rejected the gospel of Jesus Christ as foolishness and tried to approach God purely through their intellect. Today many people still propose views of God and salvation that are contrary to what Scripture teaches. Their ideas sometimes sound so reasonable that they lead many astray. According to human logic, the man with the highest education, the most degrees, and the greatest intelligence should have the wisest plan to reach God. But, as the apostle explained, the “wisdom” of mankind is folly.

The Lord promised to destroy the false wisdom of the world (Isa. 29:14; 1 Cor. 1:19), and for good reason: Human wisdom is used to glorify man. Those who dismiss faith in favor of a strictly intellectual approach to God attempt to gain His approval by means of reasoning, rationalizing, or working. For instance, every religion other than Christianity has a plan or ritual by which one supposedly gains acceptance with that belief system’s god. Such plans all boil down to this: “If I do better, I will be better. If I am better, then I will be more acceptable to my god.” A person does the work and thereby earns the glory for being a good member of his or her religion. The end result of all that work, however, is death—eternal separation from the one true God.

Christianity, on the other hand, glorifies God and His work. We are considered faithful believers when we trust in Him alone and believe that Jesus gave His life so we could be free from the chains of sin. Only He has made a way for believers to be reconciled to the Father and righteous in His eyes.

Reasonable Service

“I beseech you therefore . . . by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:1-2)

For those who would know God’s will for their lives, these verses provide the definitive answer. The key is sacrifice, not conformity. It is paradoxical, but wonderfully true, that real living is dying—dying to the world and living unto Christ! This great theme is emphasized repeatedly throughout the New Testament (Galatians 2:20, etc.).

Whether paradoxical or not, the principle of sacrificial living for Christ is eminently reasonable service! “Reasonable” is the Greek logikos, from which we derive our word “logical.” “Service” is the Greek latreian, referring to service as a priest. We have been made “an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:5). It is perfectly logical that we render such lifelong service to the great Friend who laid down His life for us in order to take away our sins and give us everlasting life with Him in the ages to come.

It is also logical that we should not conform our lives to the standards of this present evil world. Why should we imitate this world’s materialism or humanism, in dress or music or morals or anything else? We have far higher and more lasting standards, guided by the Word of God and by minds renewed in Christ.

Our minds once were “blinded” by “the god of this world” (2 Corinthians 4:4), but now they can be guided by “the mind of the Lord” (Romans 11:34; 1 Corinthians 2:16). Here is the key to knowing that good and acceptable and perfect will of God! HMM

Faithful to Condemn

But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God. —Romans 2:5

Let us now look at God’s faithfulness in its application. As it applies to sinners, if you are lost and you know it, God has declared that He will banish from His presence all who love sin and reject His Son. God has promised that; He has declared that; He has warned and threatened, and it will be so. Let no one trust a desperate hope, for it is based on the belief that God threatens but doesn’t fulfill. No, God waits that He may be gracious! And He will sometimes postpone in order to give us another thirty days, another sixty days, to make up our minds. But just as sure as the mills of God grind, the souls of men fall into them and are ground exceedingly small. God moves slowly and is very patient, but God has promised that He will banish from His presence all who love sin, who reject His Son and refuse to believe.

That is the message for the sinner who won’t come, who loves his sin.

Lord, help me do my part to warn unrepentant sinners that “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” and that our sentence has been postponed only because we have a merciful God (Hebrews 10:31). Amen.

Yet He Shall Live

He that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. (John 11:25)

This may sound strange—but it is a fact that death is not the worst thing that can happen to a believing Christian!

I can recall the first time I heard that statement, in a quiet conversation with Harry M. Shuman, for many years the president of the international Christian and Missionary Alliance.

He was a soft-spoken yet forceful man of God, rich in the wisdom of God’s Word. We were talking of the serious issues of life and death. When he had something especially important to say, Dr. Shuman had an unusual way of lowering his voice and tilting his head just a bit. I can see him yet as he looked out from under his shaggy brows straight into my eyes.

“Remember, Tozer,” he said, “death is not the worst thing that can happen to a person!”

For the Christian, death is a journey to the eternal world. It is a victory, a rest, a delight. I am sure my small amount of physical suffering has been mild compared to Paul’s, but I feel as Paul did: “I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far!” (Philippians 2:23).

Sometimes Saul was among the prophets

Sometimes Saul was among the prophets, easily turned into a prophet, and then afterwards among the witches sometimes in one place and then another, and insincere in everything. How many such we have in every Christian assembly; men who are very easily molded. They have affectionate dispositions, very likely a tender conscience; but then the conscience is so remarkably tender, that when touched it seems to give, and you are afraid to probe deeper; it heals as soon as it is wounded. You may press them whichever way you wish, they are so elastic you can always effect your purpose, but then they are not fixed in character and soon return to be what they were before.