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August 6, 2017

Let us be the BEST we have ever been as 2017 mighty men!


Matthew 20.18-19

“Jesus said, ‘We are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the teachers of the Law.  They will condemn Him to death and will hand Him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified.  On the third day He will be raised to life.'”


What is it that you believe about Jesus as the Christ?  Do you believe that He was born of a virgin conceived by God through the Holy Spirit?  Do you believe that performed many signs and wonders following His rebuke of Satan’s temptation in the wilderness as He transitioned from baptism into ministry?  Do you believe He healed the sick, reconciled the forsaken and cast out demons as well as bestowing the Holy Spirit upon His disciples to do the same?  Do you believe that He raised the dead and comforted those who mourned the dead with a life-giving faith in His Heavenly Father?  Do you believe He was condemned, crucified and on the third day was raised from death and the grave by the same life-giving faith in His Heavenly Father?  Do you believe that all those who declare their allegiance and affinity for Jesus as the Christ are saved from sin’s penalty of eternal death and granted the blessing of eternal life revealed in part in this world and in full in the Kingdom yet to come?  In the days of Jesus’ life on earth a little over two thousand years ago there were many who did not believe?  Some were doubters.  Some were “I can’t believe it’s truers.” Some were influential religious and political leaders.  Some just didn’t know what to believe.  Have we found ourselves in any of those shoes?  And what strikes me, mighty men, is that God did not need our belief in the Truth to perform the miracle of salvation.  He needed Jesus to believe it and He did and God responded accordingly.

Striking, isn’t it, that the life and death and resurrection of Jesus was prophetically uttered hundreds of years before His birth in Bethlehem.  Yet, those who should have known, understood and believed in these prophecies didn’t.  When Jesus took the disciples to the mountains above Caesarea Philippi and asked them there “Who do people and who do you say that I am?” some doubted, some didn’t know what to say, some were afraid and one was willing to declare the Truth.  Upon that confession and profession of faith Jesus declared “Upon that I can build My Church.”  Imagine a similar scene that could have happened in that Upper Room in Jerusalem in the house of a friend where the disciples gathered with Jesus for the Passover meal.  Jesus had already declared several times the truth of this time in history in which they were involved pointing to His death and resurrection.  Their observations hadn’t changed much in those intervening years between that mountaintop discussion in Caesarea Philippi and the rooftop celebration on the night Jesus was betrayed leading to His conviction, crucifixion and ultimate resurrection.  Imagine Jesus uttering words similar to this as He felt the thoughts of doubt and wonder from the disciples in His own mind, heart and spirit “They may not believe these things will happen to the Savior of Israel or that the Messiah of God will do all these things; you may not believe them as well in spite of all you have seen and heard.”  Then He pauses quietly before continuing “But God does!”

Does that truth not strike you in the heart, mind and spirit with powerful conviction and inviting confession?  It does me!  It doesn’t matter what I may believe if God didn’t believe it first.  The God who loves us so much that He gave His only begotten Son to us so that when we do believe the truth and receive it for ourselves we will, not can but will, be saved.  God believed in Jesus as the Christ.  God believes in us, too.  He has known us before we were conceived.  He prepared us for life in this world before we received it.  He has blessed us with the opportunity to glorify His Name and presence before we perceived it.  If God can and does, then what are we waiting for?  He has already shown Himself and proved Himself to us and the entire world.  It would seem that if we are living in the glory years of the light of that revelation we should truly be alive in faith, hope and love.  What do you believe, mighty men?  Do you believe in God?  in Jesus Christ? in Yourself?  Trust in the Lord your God and lean not upon your own understanding.

“Let us be the best we have ever been as 2017 mighty men.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For those leading God’s people in worship, praise and service today
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For Louisville, Kentuckiana, Goodwill, NECC (and their service to the education community of 31 campuses)  and the people of New Caledonia
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends healing, reconciliation and wisdom- especially for Tom Jensen; for needs of my family mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually; wisdom to know the truth and relate it adequately; for guidance in a difficult financial situation

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* My dad was approved for the refinancing of his house so that it can continue to be his home
* We have a loving God who speaks to us in all seasons of life reminding us we should do the same to Him
* God continues to provide prosperity at 5226 as I trust Him in so doing and give thanks praying for sufficient and proficient employees and the wisdom to meld a team spirit by staying humble before God and co-workers
* God is preparing us for our next ministry with current conditions to learn to walk more humbly and in peace; has given us relief in my health
* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!

ABIDING IN PRAYER: Father, may the light of Your love burn earnestly in us as we serve Your people in the name of Jesus by whom we pray, live and worship here on earth as it is in Heaven. AMEN.

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