VIDEO Beyond Our Imagination – God’s True and Complete Revelation

But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9

You watched videos; you read tourist guides; you talked with neighbors who had been there before; and you planned an itinerary that included every site of your destination. But when you returned home and your neighbors asked, “How was the trip?” your answer even surprised you: “We had no idea! It was beyond anything we ever expected!”

If it’s possible to gather unlimited amounts of information about a destination on earth, yet still be surprised when we get there, how much more likely are we to be surprised by what we find in heaven? When Paul wrote 1 Corinthians 2:9, he wasn’t specifically referring to heaven; he likely had both temporal and eternal blessings in mind. His point was this: The mind of man is incapable of knowing and discovering all that the mind of God contains. His ways are as far above our ways as the heavens are above the earth (Isaiah 55:8-9).

If you ever think you have God figured out, think again. His love and plans for His children, both now and in eternity, are beyond our imagination.

God has no problems, only plans.  Corrie ten Boom

God’s True and Complete Revelation (1 Corinthians 2:6-16)

Who’s It For?

He poured it out before the Lord .2 Samuel 23:16

The picture made me laugh out loud. Crowds had lined a Mexican avenue, waving flags and throwing confetti as they waited for the pope. Down the middle of the street strolled a stray puppy, appearing to grin as if the cheering was entirely for him. Yes! Every dog should have its day, and it should look like this.

It’s cute when a puppy “steals the show,” but hijacking another’s praise can destroy us. David knew this, and he refused to drink the water his mighty warriors had risked their lives to get. He had wistfully said it would be great if someone would fetch a drink from the well in Bethlehem. Three of his soldiers took him literally. They broke through enemy lines, drew the water, and carried it back. David was overwhelmed by their devotion, and he had to pass it on. He refused to drink the water, but “poured it out before the Lord” as a drink offering (2 Samuel 23:16).

How we respond to praise and honor says a lot about us. When praise is directed toward others, especially God, stay out of the way. The parade isn’t for us. When the honor is directed toward us, thank the person and then amplify that praise by giving all the glory to Jesus. The “water” isn’t for us either. Give thanks, then pour it out before God.

By:  Mike Wittmer

Reflect & Pray

What praise for yourself or others did you hear today? How did your heart respond?

God, may words of praise to You be continually on my lips. You alone deserve the praise!

Reasons to Trust

Proverbs 3:5-6

It’s easy to trust God when life is pleasant. In difficult times, though, it can be challenging. Yet that’s exactly what God tells us to do: “Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you” (Psalm 50:15).

We can trust the Lord for several reasons. One is because of His love for us. We see it clearly demonstrated through the Father’s character, Jesus’ atoning death, and our adoption as a child of God.

Another reason we can rely on Him is His infinite wisdom (Rom. 11:33). He always knows what is best for us. We don’t understand all that goes into God’s plan—compared to the full, clear view He has of our life, we see just part of the picture. So, what He chooses for us may not always make sense.

We can also depend on God because He is sovereign. Remember that our Father can accomplish whatever He—in His wisdom and love—chooses to do. He is in complete control of all things; even Satan must get His permission before taking action (Job 1:9-12).

We understandably don’t like adversity and may feel tempted to ask, “Why, Lord?” Yet by recognizing that God acts in love, wisdom, and sovereignty, we can know that He’s permitted the situation and has our long-term best in mind. So we can replace “Why?” with gratitude and trust.

Be Complete in Him

“And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power.” (Colossians 2:10)

The term pleroo simply means “to fill up.” We are “complete” with the power that “worketh in us” (Ephesians 3:20).

Many passages amplify and reiterate this concept. Once we are “born again” (John 3:7), the creation miracle that is the second birth is sufficient for “all things that pertain unto life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3). As “newborn babes,” we must “desire the sincere milk of the word that [we] may grow thereby” (1 Peter 2:2). There is no instant maturity to be had, but the resources are innate to the “new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17).

The key to understanding and applying both the authority and the ability of this “complete” resource is “use.” That is, confidence grows as our senses are “exercised to discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:14). All too often we apply the declaration “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17) only to the salvation moment. But that principle is the operative power throughout our lives.

  • “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments” (Psalm 111:10).
  • “I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts” (Psalm 119:100).
  • “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105).

We are “filled up” because “all fulness” dwells in Christ (Colossians 1:19). We have been given “exceeding great and precious promises: that by these [we] might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2 Peter 1:4). HMM III

The Real Things That Matter

That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ; being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God—Philippians 1:10-11

In life there will be found certain great fundamentals, like pillars bearing up the weight of some mighty building….

The wise man will simplify his life by going to the center of it. He will look well to the foundations and, having done that, he will not worry about the rest.

Life as we know it in our painfully intricate civilization can be deadly unless we learn to distinguish the things that matter from those that do not. It is never the major things that destroy us, but invariably the multitude of trifling things which are mistakenly thought to be of major importance. These are so many that, unless we get out from under them, they will crush us body and soul….

Every believer as well as every minister of Christ must decide whether he will put his emphasis upon the majors or the minors. He must decide whether he will stay by the sober truths which constitute the beating heart of the Scriptures or turn his attention to those marginal doctrines which always bring division and which, at their best, could not help us much on our way to the Celestial City.   NCA011, 014

Deliver us today from the trifling things and help us to spend every minute of the day on “the things that matter.” Amen.

The Spirit as Power

But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you. —Acts 1:8

Some good Christians have misread this text and have assumed that Christ told His disciples that they were to receive the Holy Spirit and power, the power to come after the coming of the Spirit….[B]ut the truth is that Christ taught not the coming of the Holy Spirit as power; the power and the Spirit are the same….

Our Lord before His ascension said to His disciples, “Tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high” (Luke 24:49). That word until is a time-word; it indicates a point in relation to which everything is either before or after.

So the experience of those disciples could be stated like this: Up to that point they had not received the power; at that point they did receive the power; after that point they had received the power….That power, still active in the Church, has enabled her to exist for nearly twenty centuries. POM085, 087

Christianity takes for granted the absence of any self-help and offers a power which is nothing less than the power of God. POM088

The Good Fight

1 Timothy 1:18

On May 9, 1912, 7,000 Salvationists packed London’s Royal Albert Hall to hear the Founder, William Booth. “And now, comrades and friends, I must say goodbye. I am going into dry-dock for repairs, but the Army will not be allowed to suffer, either financially or spiritually, or in any other way by my absence.

“And in the long future I think it will be seen—I shall not be here to see, but you will—that the Army will answer every doubt and banish every fear and strangle every slander, and by its marvelous success show to the world that it is the work of God and that the General has been His servant.

While women weep, as they do now, I’ll fight!

While little children go hungry, as they do now, I’ll fight!

While men go to prison, in and out, in and out,

as they do now, I’ll fight!

While there is a drunkard left,

While there is a poor lost girl upon the streets,

While there remains one dark soul without the light of God,

I’ll fight—I’ll fight to the very end!”

It was his last speech, perhaps his greatest. Three months later, on August 20, 1912, he died at the age of 83. Staff officers arriving at International Headquarters the following morning saw a simple message in the window: “The General Has Laid Down His Sword.”

At a three-day lying-in-state, 150,000 persons filed past the old warrior’s casket, and on the day of his funeral city offices of London were dark and shuttered. Around his grave lay wreaths from the king and queen and from titled heads-of-state throughout the world.

Unknown to most, far to the rear of the hall, sat Britain’s Queen Mary. Beside her on the aisle was a shabby, but neatly dressed woman, who had confessed her secret to the queen. Once a prostitute, The Salvation Army had saved her. She had come early to claim an aisle seat, guessing that the casket would pass within feet of her. As it did, she had unobtrusively placed three carnations on the lid, and all through the service they were the only flowers on the casket. Queen Mary was deeply moved when the woman turned to her and said simply, in words which could stand as William Booth’s epitaph: “He cared for the likes of us.”

George Scott Railton, General Booth