Monday, November 11, 2019

THE KINGDOM OF GOD (Part 3)

Romans 14:17 (NKJV) …for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

For the last two days we have been looking at this awesome verse.  We have seen that we are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus, and that it is a free gift given to us when we receive Jesus as our Lord and Savior, and are washed by His blood.  Then, we saw that we can have peace as we keep our minds on Him, and not let the things of this world fill us with fear and worry. 

Today, let us look at the last part here: “Joy in the Holy Spirit.”  Many people in this world have happiness, and there is nothing wrong with being happy, but the fruit of the spirit gives us joy, which is like gold!

You see, I can be happy because I got a new car, but I can still have joy after I see the first scratch or dent on it.  I can be happy when everything is going good, but I can still have joy in the midst of many troubles.  The Apostle Paul wrote the letter to the Philippians while he was in prison, and this epistle is called "A Letter of Joy."

Think about that!  He was in a prison that was used as the sewer system of the city, and yet over and over he talks about joy.  You see, Paul lived in the kingdom principles.  He knew that this life was just a passing moment, so he stayed in joy.  He let this fruit of the spirit rule in his heart, and he was able to overcome all that was around him.  When He and Silas were in prison, they sang praises to God.

So today, do not look at the situations around you, no matter how bad they are.  Look to Jesus!  Let His light shine on you, and let His joy so fill your heart that no matter what comes at you, you are more than a conqueror through Him that loves you.


Confession: Today, I let His joy flow through my being.  I am more than a conqueror, through Him that loves me, and I know that no matter what life, or the devil, throws at me, as long as I keep my mind on Him, it will all work out.

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Ezekiel 23
Hebrews 10:18-39
Psalms 109
Proverbs 27:13


Sunday, November 10, 2019

THE KINGDOM OF GOD (Part 2)

Romans 14:17 (NKJV) ...for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Yesterday, we looked at how God has placed within us His very righteousness.  Jesus was made sin for us.  He who never sinned took my sin and placed it on Himself.  What a God we serve!

Today, I want us to look at the next part in this verse.  In the kingdom of God, there is peace.  Oh my, how we can use this!  When I pick up the newspaper, or listen to the news, it is full of troubles. This world is so full of trouble and pain; it is all around us.  If we do not watch ourselves, we can get caught up in it ourselves.  We start by letting it get us down.  We think things like, “Have you seen what is happening to the economy?” or “Did you hear about those storms?” and on and on this list can go.

We have to remember that, yes, we are in this world, but we are not of this world.  Our minds need to be renewed to the ways of His world, which is the Kingdom of God.  The Kingdom of God is righteousness, peace, joy, and so much more!

God's peace will stay all over us as we stay in His Word.  In Isaiah 54:13-14 it says, “All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children. 14 In righteousness you shall be established; you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near you.”

If this is what getting into the Word can do for our children, then I know that it can do it for us also.  So today, make a choice to live in peace by living “In Him.”  Live in His Word day by day!


Confession: I am making a quality decision to live in God's Word, and to let His Word become my peace.  I will not let the newspaper, or the news, dominate my thoughts, but I will let His Word live deep within my heart.  I make a decision to live in the Kingdom of God!


Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Ezekiel 21 - 22
Hebrews 10:1-17
Psalms 108
Proverbs 27:12


Saturday, November 9, 2019

THE KINGDOM OF GOD (Part 1)

Romans 14:17 (NKJV) …for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

God wants us filled, not just with eating and drinking, but with His Kingdom.  His Kingdom is full of righteousness.  Righteousness means to be in right standing with God.  When God, our Father, sees us, He sees us without sin or guilt.  He sees us the same way that He sees Jesus: holy, and accepted in His sight. 

This is so amazing that we who make so many mistakes, and we who have so many shortcomings, are accepted, the same way that Jesus was when He was raised from the dead!  What an amazing God we serve, who would take our bad, put it on Jesus, and take Jesus' good, and put it on us!  This is what we call the “Great Exchange.”  He took the bad, and we get the good.

In 2 Corinthians 5:21 it says, “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”  Do you see it?  Our bad traded for His good; His righteousness.  That is why the Apostle Paul stated in Romans 8:1, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

How can there be any condemnation to the one that God has declared righteous?   How can there be any verdict of guilt to the one that God has declared holy?   When we accept Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior, we receive all that He is, and all that He has done at the cross, and in His resurrection.  So today, do not dwell on your shortcomings; dwell on His amazing grace to you and to me!


Confession: Today, I am free!  I am free from condemnation and free from guilt.  Jesus has paid the price for this for me, and I have now been set into the Kingdom of God as the very righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.  Today is going to be a very good day!

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Ezekiel 20
Hebrews 9:11-28
Psalms 107
Proverbs 27:11


Friday, November 8, 2019

YOU ARE CHOSEN

1 Peter 2:9-10 (NKJV) But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.

We are a special people to God!  We are chosen by Him.  “To be what?” you might ask.  Well, this verse tells us.  We are to be a royal priesthood, a holy nation, and His own special people.  I will take that!  How about you?  If we want to be all that God, our Heavenly Father, wants us to be, then let us be what these verses say we are.

Our Father has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light.  This is amazing!  To think that nothing can stand in His light, yet here it states that we can.  Why is that?  It is all because of the blood of Jesus!  Our Jesus has paid the price so that we can have the right and privilege to stand before God.

When Jesus went to the cross, He was separated from His Heavenly Father so that you and I can now have access to Him.  He took all of the bad that we have ever committed, and will ever commit, upon Himself, so that He could make us spotless and pure to the Father.

Jesus became our substitute.  He took the bad, and we get the good.  He became sin so that we could have His righteousness.  This is the great exchange!  This is truly the work of the cross.  This is why we sing, “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me.”  Rejoice today!  Our Redeemer has made us a special people to Himself!


Confession:  I am a special person to God, and if that is the way that my Father in heaven sees me, that is how I am going to see myself.  I am going to see myself washed and pure in His sight, because of Jesus.

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)
Ezekiel 18 - 19
Hebrews 9:1-10
Psalms 106:32-48
Proverbs 27:10

Thursday, November 7, 2019

THE CHIEF CORNERSTONE

1 Peter 2:6 (NKJV) Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture, “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame."

We see here our Jesus, our Chief Cornerstone.  He is the Elect and the Precious One.  He is our Redeemer and our Lord.  He is the Savior of everyone who would believe in Him.

I love the last part where it says that those who believe on Him will by no means be put to shame.  What a Word!  Our Lord and King, Jesus Christ, will make sure that we are never put to shame!  He cares for us so much that He only wants the best for us.  Our King, who rules the universe, makes sure that we are never put to shame!

In this life, we have many people who have put us to shame.  They put us down, took advantage of us, or even used us, but Jesus NEVER will!  He is always looking out for our well-being.  He has promised us that He would never leave us or forsake us, no matter what.  We have all had friends that have been with us while everything is going good, but then when something comes up, they are gone, and they left us in the dust.  But Jesus will never leave us!  He is the Chief Cornerstone, He is the Precious One, and He will not let us be put to shame.

There are so many names for Jesus throughout the Word of God, from the Lord our Shepherd, to the King of kings and Lord of lords.  Yet, here He is the Chief Cornerstone; He is the One that holds it all together.  I know that I have asked Him to hold my messed up life together also.  HOW ABOUT YOU?


Confession:  Jesus is my Chief Cornerstone.  He is the One who is holding my life together.  He is the One who will make sure that I will never be put to shame.  He is the One who will escort me to the Father on that day.

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)
Ezekiel 16:42 - Ezekiel 17
Hebrews 8
Psalms 106:13-31
Proverbs 27:7-9

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

TAKING IT CAPTIVE

2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (KJV) For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: 4  (for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5 casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.

When a person commits a crime, the law goes after them to bring them into captivity.  In these verses, this is what Paul is saying to us.  We have to cast down imaginations that do not line up with the Word of God, and take every thought captive.  We need to keep getting to a place in our lives where we think God's thoughts, and not the thoughts of the secular news.

“Oh Pastor,” you might say, “that is a tall order,” and you know what, it is!  But I have found that if I spend a good portion of my day listening to the news and checking every website to see what is going on, it brings no edification whatsoever.  However, if I think God's thoughts, and make a conscience decision to let His Word stay in my life, it lifts me up and helps me throughout the day.

Paul states here that though we walk in the flesh, our battle is not with people, but with ourselves.  We do not like to hear that, but it is the truth.  Most of my battles are in my mind, and if I am just putting more junk in there, how am I ever going to win this battle and be victorious in life?

So today, take those thoughts captive that have been pulling you down.  Put them in jail, and do not give them a “Get Out of Jail Free Card.”  Bind them up, hold them down, and let God's Word fill your mind and heart in Christ Jesus!


Confession:  Today, I am taking control of my thoughts.  This is my mind, and I do not have to fill it with trash.  I can fill it with the good Word of God, and with things that build me up.  Today, I am taking the trash out, and bringing good stuff in!

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)
Ezekiel 14:12 - 16:41
Hebrews 7:18-28
Psalms 106:1-12
Proverbs 27:4-6

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

THINK ON THESE THINGS

Philippians 4:8 (KJV) Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Sometimes we catch ourselves wondering what we should think about.  It seems like our minds can go off in so many directions.  The Bible tells us what to think about, and we find it in this verse.  I have found that our minds seem to want to go to the negative, so when we see here the different things to think on, it helps us to correct our “stinking thinking.”

The Apostle Paul, by the Holy Spirit, says that we should think on things that are TRUE, HONEST, JUST, PURE, LOVELY, OF GOOD REPORT, VIRTUOUS, AND FULL OF PRAISE.  Now, for many of us, this will take an adjustment, but the Bible would never tell us to do something unless God has put within us the ability to do it.  It does take effort, but the rewards are so great.  Instead of being down and out, you will have joy and peace.

Making decisions in our lives to do it God's way, and not ours, can really bring us from the lows to the highs in our lives.   Many wonder why they are down, or seem to be so bummed.  I would venture to say that many times it is what we are thinking about.  We have to make a decision to look at bad thoughts, or even just down thoughts, like garbage.  I do not know about you, but when there is garbage in the house, I take it out.

So today, if you have garbage thoughts, go ahead and take them out, and fill your house (your mind) with the thoughts found here.  Think thoughts that are TRUE, HONEST, JUST, PURE, LOVELY, OF GOOD REPORT, VIRTUOUS, AND FULL OF PRAISE!


Confession:  Today, I am taking the garbage out.  I am taking out the negative thoughts, and filling my mind with God's Word.  His Word is spirit and life, and that is exactly what I need; His life!

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Ezekiel 12 - 14:11
Hebrews 7:1-17
Psalms 105:37-45
Proverbs 27:3