Sunday, November 15, 2015, 6:45 a.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “Not By Might.” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Jeremiah 31:3-14 (select vv. NASB).
An Everlasting Love (v. 3)
The Lord appeared to him from afar, saying,
“I have loved you with an everlasting love;
Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness.
We read in John 3:16 that God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes (is believing) in him should not perish, but should have everlasting life. We read in John 6:44 that no one can come to Jesus Christ unless the Father draws him (or her) to him. In Romans 8:29-30 we read: “For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”
For those of us who are in Christ Jesus, by God’s grace, through faith, we are loved by God, we have been drawn to Jesus Christ by the Father, and we are called of God for his divine purposes and will for our lives, that we might be saved out of slavery to sin, and that we might become servants of Christ’s righteousness, being conformed to His image (his likeness). We are the Lord’s and not our own. We were bought with a price, his blood. Therefore, we should honor God with our lives, in all that we do, think, believe, and say.
Jesus Christ did not die on the cross for our sins merely to deliver us from hell and to give us the promise of heaven when we die, with nothing in between. Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. He died that we might no longer live for ourselves, but for him who gave himself up for us. His grace, which brings salvation, is not a free license to continue in sin without guilt and without remorse. His grace teaches us to say “NO” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives while we wait for Christ’s return. Coming to Christ in faith means we die with Christ to our old lives of living for sin and self, being transformed in heart and mind of the Spirit of God, and that we put on our new lives in Christ, “created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” If we persist in conducting our lives according to our sinful nature, we will die, but if by the Spirit we put to death the deeds of the flesh, we will live.
[See: Luke 9:23-25; John 6:35-66; 10:27-30; Ac. 26:16-18; Ro. 6:1-23; 8:1-14; 2 Co. 5:15; Gal. 2:20; Eph. 2:8-10; 4:17-24; Tit. 2:11-14; 1 Pet. 2:24-25; & 1 Jn. 1:5-9.]
So, if you have bought into a lie which says that God does not require repentance (turning from sin) or walking in obedience to his will for our lives, then prayerfully read these scripture passages, and ask the Lord Jesus to open your mind to the truth, because your eternal destiny depends on it. God has not changed. He demands holiness and righteousness, yet not by us trying to earn our own salvation by good works, but by us trusting in him to be our Lord and Savior via turning from sin and walking in the Spirit in his righteousness and holiness, all in the power and working of the Spirit within us. If we say we have fellowship with God, but we persist in conducting our lives in the darkness (sin), we are liars. Jesus died that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us who walk not according to the flesh, but who conduct our lives in accord with the Spirit (See: Ro. 8:1-14). Faith in Jesus Christ = death to sin and living to righteousness (1 Pet. 2:24).
You Will Be Rebuilt (vv. 4a, 8c-9, and 13b-14)
“Again I will build you and you will be rebuilt,
O virgin of Israel!”
…A great company, they will return here.
“With weeping they will come,
And by supplication I will lead them;
I will make them walk by streams of waters,
On a straight path in which they will not stumble;
For I am a father to Israel,
And Ephraim is My firstborn.”
…For I will turn their mourning into joy
And will comfort them and give them joy for their sorrow.
“I will fill the soul of the priests with abundance,
And My people will be satisfied with My goodness,” declares the Lord.
A large portion of the church in the world, in particular here in the west, has deserted (departed from) the foundations of the faith laid down for us by Jesus Christ and by his NT apostles, and they have run after the gods of this world, and have bought into a false grace message which gives free license for lasciviousness. Although they genuinely had come to faith in Jesus Christ, they have since wandered off from the pure gospel, and have tolerated and/or have accepted the preaching of “another Jesus.” The church is in crisis. There is not much difference between the church and the world these days. Instead of the church getting together as the body of Christ to mutually strengthen and encourage one another in the faith so that they can take the light of truth out to the world, they have invited the world into the church meetings, and are busy focusing much attention on entertaining the world and on making them feel good about themselves, even in their sin.
God has been sending messages to his church, via his servants who are sharing with them the truths of scripture, and of the gospel of our salvation, and he is confronting them with their sins of idolatry and spiritual adultery, he is calling them to repentance, and he has been warning of judgment, which has already begun. Yet, I believe the prophecies of scripture teach that through judgment God/Jesus Christ is going to revive his church and he is going to restore them to fellowship with him, and that the gospel will go forth from the revived church to the world, and that many will come to faith in Jesus Christ before our Lord returns to take us to be with him for eternity.
This judgment of God is coming via this New World Order “Beast,” which has been in the process of conquering people and nations and Christians throughout the world, in particular in the Middle East and North Africa, of late, and this is now moving its way westward. The way of life we have been accustomed to living in the west is soon to change. This global elite and wealthy and powerful of the world are forming this one-world totalitarian government and one-world religion, and it is being forced down our throats via its primary messengers, Barack Obama and Pope Francis. These wealthy and powerful world leaders are the terrorists of the world. They are the ones recruiting, training, equipping and financing these terrorist groups to come after us. Christians are being severely persecuted and killed for their faith and testimonies for Jesus Christ if they hold to the tenets of the Christian faith, and if they preach the gospel according to Jesus and his NT apostles.
Yet, God is allowing all this to take place in order to revive his adulterous people, and in order to draw many to faith in Jesus Christ. And, he will equip and empower us to be overcomers, and to remain faithful to him, and to stand strong in our faith and in our testimonies for Jesus Christ during this onslaught against Christianity. Although many have been rebellious against him, he will rebuild their lives, he will give them new purpose in life, and he will send them forth with his gospel so many will be saved. They will come with weeping, and in humility, and prayerfully, and God will bring them back to himself. He will teach them in the way they should go in the way of holiness and righteousness, and he will be their only shepherd. He will deliver them out of slavery to sin and the yoke of deception. He will open their blinded eyes so they see and know the truth, and so they obey the truth. And, they will be joyful at their newfound freedom.
Then, one day God will judge our persecutors, he will throw the beast and the false prophet into the lake of fire, and he will bind Satan so he can no longer go after us. Jesus Christ will return for his bride (his saints), and we will forever be with our Lord. Then, the children of God, i.e. those who have put their trust in Jesus Christ, will sorrow no more. We will no longer have cause to fear, for our enemies will be gone, and God will give us complete peace and safety. God will turn our mourning into gladness, and he will comfort us with his love. And, we will reign with him on this earth for 1,000 years.
In the meanwhile, we trust him, we believe in his promises and his provisions, and we rest in his love, even in a time of great testing and trial, and under enormous persecution. We rest in knowing that it is not in our own strength that we will be victorious and that we will overcome all opposition against us, but it is only in the power and strength of the Spirit of God within us that we will make it through and will endure to the end. What God/Jesus Christ has begun, he will finish.
Not By Might / An Original Work / March 29, 2012
Based off Zechariah 4
“Not by might, and not by power,
But by My Spirit,” says our Lord, God.
“Mighty mountain, O what are you?
Before Christ you will become level ground.”
The hands of our Lord, Savior God,
Formed the foundation of His church.
He alone will complete the work
He began in His servants’ hearts and minds.
Who despises small beginnings?
Much can be done in Christ’s strength within.
Be of courage, and trust your Lord.
All sufficient He is for all your needs.
Opposition and apathy:
Holy Spirit will set us free!
We can be overcomers in our faith
In our Lord, and our Savior, King.
Don’t be troubled by God’s timing.
He has ev’rything in His command.
Hasten to obey His commands fully,
Trusting Him to work all for good.
Not by might nor by human strength,
But by God’s power; strength within;
My dependency now on His working
His will in me in righteousness.