Archives for the month of: March, 2013

I Come Quickly
“He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.” (Revelation 22:20)

This is the next-to-the-last verse in the Bible, and it contains the last promise in the Bible. The final promise of the Lord is that He would come back to earth again “quickly,” but it has been almost 2,000 years since He made the promise, and He hasn’t come yet. Evidently, the word “quickly.” as He used it, did not mean “immediately.”

As a matter-of-fact, this promise appears no less than six times here in Revelation (Revelation 2:5, 16; 3:11; 22:7, 12, 20). The first three are in Christ’s messages to the churches at Ephesus, Pergamos, and Philadelphia, respectively. The last three are in His final message to all churches (Revelation 22:16).

The Lord Jesus has not forgotten His promise for “all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us” (2 Corinthians 1:20). Furthermore, many spiritual believers in every previous generation have been looking for His coming “quickly,” as He promised, yet they all have died before its fulfillment.

It seems evident that “quickly” must be understood in the sense of “suddenly.” It may well be “in such an hour as ye think not” (Matthew 24:44), and it will occur “in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye” (1 Corinthians 15:52), when it happens. It does seem that all the signs of the nearness of His sudden coming are being fulfilled today, except perhaps one. “And the gospel must first be published among all nations” (Mark 13:10), “for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come” (Matthew 24:14).

Even this is now being done, it seems. In any case, it is vitally important that we “abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we . . . not be ashamed before him at his coming” (1 John 2:28). “Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” HMM

The Obedience of Christ
“I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.” (John 5:30)

Christ is our great example in all things—even in that of obedience to the Father and His will. As the perfect Son, He obeyed His Father in all things. “I do nothing of myself,” He said, “but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things. And He that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him” (John 8:28-29).

There are three specific references in the epistles to the obedience of Christ. One of the most profound passages in the Bible is Hebrews 5:8: “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.” How could the omniscient Son of God have to learn anything? There are some things that cannot be learned in books but only by experience, and obedience in hard circumstances is surely one of these. Jesus learned obedience by actual experience.

Christ obeyed His Father even after praying that the bitter cup might be taken away. “Being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:8).

Had He been disobedient, as was Adam, we could never have known salvation. “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous” (Romans 5:19). Jesus was, indeed, always perfectly obedient to His Father’s word, “leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps”(1 Peter 2:21).

As our text emphasizes, His obedience consisted simply of seeking and following the will of His Father in all things. “Not my will, but thine” (Luke 22:42). HMM

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Behold the Lamb
“And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!” (John 1:36)

As he spoke to two of his followers, John the Baptist was, in effect, telling them that they should henceforth leave him to follow Jesus. “And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus” (John 1:37). On the previous day, when John had first seen Jesus coming, he had said, apparently to all his disciples, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).

This is the first use of the word “lamb” in the New Testament, and it is significant that it refers here to the Lord Jesus as the one great sacrifice for our sins. He is called “the Lamb” 30 more times in the New Testament, the final time no longer viewing Him on the altar but on His eternal throne (Revelation 22:3). Yet, even on His throne as our King, He is still the Lamb, and we can never ever forget that He once died for us that we might live with Him.

Long before this, Isaac once asked his father, “Where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham answered, “God will provide himself a lamb” (Genesis 22:7-8). God did just that 2000 years later, when Christ, “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8), “came into the world to save sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15).

Then when God was ready to set His people free in ancient Egypt, He told them to place the shed blood of a spotless lamb on the doorpost of each home and said, “When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13). In fulfillment of all these ancient sacrifices and types, the once-for-all Lamb of God came, and “Christ our passover is sacrificed [even] for us” (1 Corinthians 5:7).

Now, like John’s disciples, it surely compels us, in the very depths of our souls, to “behold the Lamb of God” and follow Him. HMM

Institute of Creation

Today In The WORD
Prayer by faith!
Verse for Today: Thursday, March 21, 2013
Matthew 21:22 – If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.

Faith and prayer are intertwined in essence and practice. Without faith, prayer becomes ritual. Without prayer, faith is baseless. Only a heart of faith will pray and a praying heart will develop faith. There are people who try to convert their faith into action without prayer. Faith and prayer go hand in hand because we can meaningfully pray only when we have faith. But our faith is not based on powerful and loud prayer, but in God whose power we depend on for answers. So it is imperative that we fortify our faith with the mind of God in all that we pray for. As we speak to Him about our needs, situations, problems, conflicts and anxieties, God will focus our minds on His will in it. So when we go to Him in prayer, we must go without preconceived answers unlike Prophet Balaam. Thus when we dwell in prayer, God will speak to our hearts about His will in our concerns. God’s transforming power will then fix His answers in our hearts and will encourage us to pray accordingly. It is at such times that we can pray specifically by faith about a matter for which the answer becomes absolutely sure. This was the truth about prayer that Jesus demonstrated to His disciples throughout the 42 months of His public ministry and thus captivated their hearts to ask Him to teach them to pray. Today we are challenged by God to go to Him with our needs and burdens and speak to Him about it. We pour our hearts out and exercise our faith to ask God to remove our burdens and meet our needs. He will honor our faith, no matter how feeble it might be, and will answer us for the praise of His name.

Dear friend, do you ever wonder why your prayers are not answered the way you wanted? Does it confuse you about the link between your prayer and your faith? We must understand that faith is a gift that we receive from God as we synchronize our minds with that of God through regular and continuous meditation on His person, promises and power. It is then that we will know His perfect will about all that we pray for. Our meditating heart must find rest in His presence as we pray about all our needs, burdens and situations. When we are in His green pastures, His Spirit will enlighten us about what He intends in our situations. He speaks to us on the basis of His written Word and enlightens us through His Spirit to make us understand His mind about His plans for us. As we believe it, faith is generated and strengthened in our hearts to enable us to pray while He fulfills it in our lives. Often the hindrance in receiving answers to prayer is the unconfessed sins of omissions and commissions in our lives. If we have grieved or quenched the Spirit of God, we won’t be exercised to know the mind of God in our prayer life. As we live a life of continuous confession and repentance and live in regular unhindered fellowship with God, He will reveal His mind on the matters that we speak to Him about. He will then give us the transforming power of His Spirit to understand and acknowledge His will. It is at that time that we will be able to pray by faith and believe that it shall be done in Christ. Today God challenges us to get to know His mind and will through a repentant life of meditation on and fellowship with Him. He waits for us to get right with Him without prejudices and angularities and be strengthened in our faith to pray and receive answers from Him.

Philippians 4:6 – Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

Thought for Today
Prayer without faith is worthless and faith without prayer is illusion, but when they work together, there will be showers of blessings.
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Limitations on God’s Promises
“Thus saith the LORD; If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the LORD.” (Jeremiah 31:37)

The people of Israel, in spite of all God had done for them, continually rebelled against Him, even turning to other gods. One might think God would have destroyed them and started again, but He had made a promise first to Abraham, then to Isaac, and then to Jacob, that this nation would be His special people, and He would not break that promise.

In our text God reveals the “conditions” under which He would cast off Israel, but they are such that there is no possibility of their being met.

If heaven above can be measured: Neither Abraham nor Jeremiah could have had any concept of the number of stars or the depth of space. Now, with modern telescopes, we see unthinkable distances and even farther and farther as our technology increases. Estimates of the radius of the universe now stand at around 15-20 billion light years, and no end is in sight.

If the foundations of the earth [can be] searched out beneath: Sometimes scientists claim they know more about the sun than they do the earth. But in reality, only one percent of the earth’s radius has been explored. The pressures and temperatures which exist deep inside the earth are unthinkably great, and we don’t even know how matter acts under those conditions. The promise to Israel is secure.

Scripture is likewise full of “exceeding great and precious promises” (2 Peter 1:4) made to the believer. Our text indicates God’s attitudes toward His promises. We need not worry that He will keep His Word. JDM

Institute of Creation Research