Monday, July 15, 2019

Father and King





If God says his chosen ones are acceptable to him, can anyone bring charges against them? Or can anyone condemn them? No indeed! Christ died and was raised to life, and now he is at God's right side, speaking to him for us. Can anything separate us from the love of Christ? Can trouble, suffering, and hard times, or hunger and nakedness, or danger and death? It is exactly as the Scriptures say, “For you we face death all day long. We are like sheep on their way to be butchered.” In everything we have won more than a victory because of Christ who loves us. I am sure that nothing can separate us from God's love—not life or death, not angels or spirits, not the present or the future, and not powers above or powers below. Nothing in all creation can separate us from God's love for us in Christ Jesus our Lord!

Romans 8:33-39 - CEV

If you were the son or daughter of a king, would you be more impressed with the fact that your father is a king, or that he is your father? I think, quite obviously it is more important that your father is, in fact your father than that he is a king!
If you had to choose between the two, what would you decide? Would you choose to keep the king and lose your father, or keep your father and lose the king?
I would rather have a loving father than a loving king! A father who never receives the praise of the world, but loves his children is more important to them than all the kings on earth!
If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, then you can know for certain that God is your Father! He is also the Almighty Creator of all there is, but like a mighty warrior General would pick up his baby and caress him in his powerful arms, God will tenderly care for you! Remember, the only way to become a child of God is to be “born again” into His family because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the Cross!
Many children in today’s world are “Fatherless” because of so many terrible things that can happen. But no children of God are without their Father! You can also ask your Father to let you sit in His lap as He tells you the stories of Creation and the history of Time! You will be forever blessed!
“Lord Jesus, thank You for giving Your own blood so that I might be a child of the Father! May Your Glorious and Wonderful Name be praised now and forever, Amen!”

Friday, July 12, 2019

Fooling the Nations




I saw an angel come down from heaven, carrying the key to the deep pit and a big chain. He chained the dragon for 1,000 years. It is that old snake, who is also known as the devil and Satan. Then the angel threw the dragon into the pit. He locked and sealed it, so 1,000 years would go by before the dragon could fool the nations again. But after that, it would have to be set free for a little while.
Revelation 20:1-3 CEV

If Satan will not be able to “fool the nations” while he is locked up in the pit, then “fooling the nations” is part of what Satan does as he roams free on this earth! The “father of lies” wants you to believe things that are not true!
Every lie on earth in some way is an attempt to contradict Jesus Christ. When you dip your toe in the filthy water of deceit and lies you begin to do the work of Satan instead of Jesus!
The Devil works hard to fool whole nations with the lies that bind them in a web of misinformation, that they believe to be truth!
As he did with Adam and Eve, Satan wants you to question the Words of God Himself and come to believe that the Holy One is lying to those He created! When the Devil succeeds in getting you to accuse God of lying about even one small thing, then you have opened the door for the Devil to bombard your mind with suggestions of God’s dishonesty!
Remember, there are always consequences for not believing the truth!
“Lord Jesus, I pray for the wisdom to know the difference between true and lies! Thank You Jesus for the truth that always comes from You, the Holy Spirit and the Father! May Your Holy and Righteous Name be praised now and forever, Amen!”

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Don't Twist the Bible




Don't forget that the Lord is patient because he wants people to be saved. This is also what our dear friend Paul said when he wrote you with the wisdom God had given him. Paul talks about these same things in all his letters, but part of what he says is hard to understand. Some ignorant and unsteady people even destroy themselves by twisting what he said. They do the same thing with other Scriptures too. My dear friends, you have been warned ahead of time! So don't let the errors of evil people lead you down the wrong path and make you lose your balance. Let the gift of undeserved grace and the understanding that come from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ help you keep on growing. Praise Jesus now and forever! Amen.

2 Peter 3:15-18 - CEV

What do you do with verses in the Bible that are hard to understand? Do you pray for understanding or “twist” them to fit your own personal prejudices about what they “should” mean? Even the Apostle Peter admitted that some of what Paul said in his writings was “hard to understand.” If Peter, who walked with Jesus for three years found it hard to understand some of what Paul wrote, do you think it will be easy for you?
Often, we seek to find someone who believes they do understand that part of the Bible and ask them “what we should believe” about it.
Many years ago a large part of what I “believed” about what the Bible was actually saying, was based on what other people told me! Many parts of my understanding came from someone who told me something like: “I know the Bible says this or that, but what it really means is:”
If you want to understand any book, the best way is to ask the author of the book. If you want to know what the Bible means the only reliable source is to ask the Holy Spirit! It was the Holy Spirit who guided the hands and minds of men to write the Scriptures. And the Holy Spirit, who lives in you as a follower of Jesus, can reveal to you what the Bible is saying, even the “difficult parts.”
So don’t “twist” the Scriptures to make them align with something you heard, even from a respectable man or woman of faith. Let your understanding be adjusted by the Holy Spirit Himself until your understanding agrees with what the Bible itself says.
“Lord Jesus, let my understanding of the Scriptures come from the Holy Spirit and not from the opinions of men. Praise Your Holy and Righteous Name now and forever, Amen.”



Friday, July 5, 2019

The Real Jesus-Like Life




Come to Jesus Christ. He is the living stone people have rejected, but which God has chosen and highly honored. And now you are living stones being used to build a spiritual house. You are also a group of holy priests, and with the help of Jesus Christ you will offer sacrifices that please God. It is just as God says in the Scriptures, “Look! I am placing in Zion a choice and precious cornerstone. No one who has faith in this one will be disappointed.” You are followers of the Lord, and this stone is precious to you. But it isn't precious to those who refuse to follow him. They are the builders who tossed aside the stone that turned out to be the most important one of all.
1 Peter 2:4-7 - CEV

Over and over in the Bible we are encouraged to be like Jesus! The most amazing thing about following Jesus is this: We don’t change ourselves into someone like Him. He changes us so we can be like Him.
Jesus takes us where we are and like a potter who makes a pot, He shapes us into His own image so we can be like Him! We cannot die for our own sins, but we do “take up our cross and follow Him.”
The “Free Will” that God has given man enables the created one to say “No” to God. We can refuse to be shaped into the image of Jesus, or we can yield to the call of God on our lives and let Him do His work in us.
When you see a beautiful piece of pottery on display you would never think of praising the pot for the beauty it displays. In the same way we cannot praise a man who God has formed into the image of Jesus!
When you try to spruce up your life so that it looks like Jesus, you are dealing in counterfeit art. The only real “Jesus-like” life is one that is crafted by the Lord, using a human being who gives himself daily to Jesus Christ!
“Lord Jesus, I give myself again to You today. Do what You will with my life. Make me into Your image so I can show everyone I encounter who You are and what You did for them. Praise Your Holy Name, now and forever, Amen!”

Thursday, July 4, 2019

SOARING TO THE HEAVENS WITH JESUS!




You were rescued from the useless way of life you learned from your ancestors. But you know you were not rescued by such things as silver or gold that don't last forever. You were rescued by the precious blood of Christ, that spotless and innocent lamb. Christ was chosen even before the world was created, but because of you, he did not come until these last days. And when he did come, it was to lead you to have faith in God, who raised him from death and honored him in a glorious way. This is why you have put your faith and hope in God.

1 Peter 1:18-21 - CEV

Jesus came to “lead you to have faith in God.” Faith is a simple five-letter word but is profound in every way!
Since the Fall of Man in the Garden of Eden it has been very easy for mankind not to believe in and especially not to have faith in God! God reveals Himself to those who want to see Him, and hides Himself from those who don’t desire to know Him.
So, if you choose to deny the reality of God, you will have plenty of “evidence” to support your choice! God through the Holy Spirit does not force Himself on you. Your mind will be able to satisfactorily explain away everything that might suggest that God is real.
But when you take the step of choosing to believe in and trust God, the “evidences” become clear and show themselves all around you! Remember that you can believe in God without trusting Him. The Bible says even the demons believe! Belief without trust is what the demons do!
If you want to have faith in God, then you will need to step off the edge of a cliff every day. You will begin with a small step of faith. Then the next step will be greater. When you trust God in anything, it is because you cannot see the way with your own senses.
Those who don’t trust God will think you are foolish. But like a baby bird, learning to fly and be supported by the air beneath his wings, you will begin your journey of Soaring to the Heavens with Jesus!
“Lord Jesus, I do want to put all my faith and hope in You, and learn to trust You with every step I take, even today. May Your Holy and Righteous Name be praised now and forever, Amen!”

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Special note - I do enjoy reading all the anonymous messages you send about the blog.  But they are indeed private and I have no way of responding to them.  If you would like to let me know how to respond to a note please send it to blog@billsteensland.com.  Then I would be able to respond.  This is not an attempt to build a data base of your email addresses and I will not share them with others for commercial purposes.  But if you would like to send an email, send it to blog@billsteensland.com.  Thanks and God bless. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

The Moment Before I Hear the Trumpet





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Every time I think of you, I thank my God.  And whenever I mention you in my prayers, it makes me happy.  This is because you have taken part with me in spreading the good news from the first day you heard about it.  God is the one who began this good work in you, and I am certain that he won't stop before it is complete on the day that Christ Jesus returns.

Philippians 1:3-6

Recently, I heard a missionary giving a report about his "work on the mission field."  It was a simple and powerful presentation. He spoke of how he was able to tell people about Jesus in the culture where he now lives and has been for more than 20 years.  

He did not talk about how many people gathered for worship meetings.  He talked about lost men and women and how they came to know Jesus.  The thing that he does is very simple.  He builds basic houses for poor people who can't afford them, and in the process tells them about the Love of Jesus Christ!  He has built hundreds of houses in the years he has been there, but did not report on how many people accepted Jesus!  It seems, his goal is to continue to proclaim the message and let the Lord count the results. 

The Phillipians began spreading the message of Jesus on the day they first heard it.  But, the job is not yet done and won't be complete until the day that Jesus returns!  

So, if today is the Day of the return of Jesus, my job is the same as it was yesterday and every day from the first time I heard the message!  I am to tell someone about Jesus Christ and His message of hope for everyone who turns their heart to Him! 

"Lord Jesus, may I be telling someone about You the moment before I hear the Trumpet! And  may Your Holy and Precious Name be Praised now and forever, Amen."