Please Pass This On

I’m BLESSED and happy to be able to re-blog this.

More profound Truth from my Sister in Christ!

  — From the Pews —  

There is Healing!    JESUS is the ANSWER

https://fromthepews.blog/2016/12/15/hhs-issues-final-regulation/

INNER  HEALING ?  It’s  Not Only Possible… It’s —

—PEACE THAT EXCEEDS ALL EARTHLY UNDERSTANDING —

 Philippians 4:7          —   And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

From The Pews

Rachel's Vineyard

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“Roll Away the Stone” Chapter 16

Are we being a Barnabas to our sisters, and brothers, in the family of God? Are we being a Barnabas even to our natural family members when they’re in need of encouragement? Maybe they did wrong. Maybe they’ve made some bad decisions in life that brought shame to the family. But, does constant chastisement, and nagging, on how bad one has lived their life ever help change a person, or help them to see the error of their ways? Or, does it take love, and gentle directive nudging?

Sometimes, of course, there is a need for confrontation, and speaking the truth to a person in tough-love, but then comes a time for encouraging, and disciplining that person in ways that are not accusative, or condemning . Saul, of Tarsus, for an example, was a very astute man of his day, in the eyes of religious law. Sadly, though, like many of today, he was over zealous in how he saw God and His work. Many extremist of the Mideast, Fareast, and even here in the  U.S. will take a person’s life in a second, and even take their own life thinking they are doing God a great service. The Bible, of course, tells us this type of behavior will be common in the last days.

They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.                                 John 16:2

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.            2 Timothy 3:1-5

This behavior isn’t limited to the Muslim religious extremist, it’s right here, even among some so-called Christians. Even as far back as the Crusades men went out for the wrong reasons, taking lives and thinking they were doing God some great service. Here in America, people have bombed abortion clinics thinking they were doing God a favor. And it’s not just in the abortion clinics by any means. Two years ago, a Dr. who was well-known as an abortion, or, right to choice advocate was senselessly gunned down. Taken in the prime of his life by one who thought he was doing God a favor. Not in his clinic, But, in His CHURCH!!!!!

(May 31, 2009, George Tiller,)

Now. Getting back to Saul. So extremely zealous in believing the things he was doing to Christians was all for the Glory of God, that he went to the high priest asking to be deputized, as it were, legally sanctioned to go out, capture, beat, and imprison, any and all Christians he came across on the way to Damascus. But, as we read, in Acts Chapter 9,  Saul met with a greater authority. He met the “True High Priest,” on the road to Damascus,and was given a much higher appointment than that of  a deputy enforcing the “Religious Laws of Man”. Saul met his divine appointment when he met JESUS the Christ!

And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest,And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.

In other words, Jesus was saying.  ” Saul, you are defeating your own purpose, and persecuting those you should be encouraging”.

And he (Paul) trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.                                                    Acts 9:1-6

Now we know this was a very humbling experience to say the least for Saul. He was blinded by the Light of Jesus’ exuberant manifestation, and led by the hand to Damascus where all he did for three days, and nights, was pray. He wouldn’t eat, he couldn’t sleep. He just prayed.

This was no covert operation Saul, of Tarsus had been on in the taking, and imprisoning of the saints of God either. Saul, of Tarsus was a dreaded, and greatly feared name, when heard, or  mentioned,  among the disciples of the Lord as we see in Acts 9:13. After Jesus told Ananias in a vision to go to straight street and “lay thou hands on and anoint one Saul of Tarsus”, Ananias retorted : ” Lord, I’ve heard so much of what this man has done among our brethren. Are you sure this is what you want me to do Lord, this man may just cut off my headstone me to death”. (Paraphrased)

Our loving savior Jesus, assured Ananias it was what He desired for him to do, as Saul was a Chosen vessel for the work of the Lord. After which, Saul was a born again, filled with the  Holy Spirit of God, baptized, new man in Christ, (Now called Paul, ) and went out almost immediately after Ananias laid his hands on him, and the scales fell from his eyes, and began reaching in the synagogues that Christ was the son of God.

Nonetheless, just because we know all of this, do we think he no longer had guilt to deal with over the things he had done? Of course he did. In fact many believe this guilt, and lack of self forgiveness was the very thorn in Paul’s side, which the Bible tells us clearly, in Paul’s own words, buffeted him till his last letter to Timothy, before being killed.

The Bible tells us, of this thorn in Paul’s flesh, that he asked the Lord to remove it three times. Gods only response was:  “My Grace Is Sufficient”. And, seeing as Paul was known to pray for three days at a time, those three times of his imploring God to remove the thorn could have been three different occasions in prayer equaling nine days or more. So. If the Great man of God, Paul, who wrote 13, and some say 14 books of the Bible needed an encourager to help keep him from falling into despair even after seeing Jesus the Christ, in a great vision of light on the road to Damascus. Then who are we to not be an encourager to our sisters, and brothers? Knowing that we need encouraging many times our selves, even if a person has fallen, or caused shame, or less than perfect in his, or her, walk with the Lord, if God says His Grace is enough, then who are we to cast stones of discouragement and doubt at that person?

I’ve personally heard several sermons, preached by two different preachers, both saying “the Church has taken this Grace thing just a little too far”, and both times, in both services I said to myself ; (and wanted to stand and shout it ) Maybe you’ve taken yourself too far preacher! But, brothers, and sisters, if God says ye are saved by His Grace, then the only thing I’m taking from the Grace God has given to another person, is my hands off.

The Church needs more Barnabas’

We need to edify our sisters, and brothers. We need to bring them up when they are down. The Bible tells us that we are to glory with one another in our mountain top experiences, and mourn together in our valleys. I believe for a man, or a woman, to be truly born again we are to see a change in the way we feel toward other people in their hardships, and pain, even in the midst of our own mud bogged pain filled situations of life. We need a Barnabas, and we need to be a Barnabas . The only way the Church I believe will ever come together again in one accord is to learn this lesson from the great book of Acts, and to learn to apply it into our daily interactions with our brothers, and sisters, in Christ.

Now Paul wasn’t the only one who had doubts. Can you imagine the thoughts of the disciples of the Lord the first time Paul showed back up in Jerusalem? Can you imagine the fear, and hatred, and total distrust the disciples must have felt toward a man who stood firm as he held the coats of those other Pharisees while they cast the stones that killed Stephen? And only the Lord knows what other things he had done…In the Name of the Lord, of course.  Or, at least, that he thought was a great service to the Lord, according to his Religious schooling of the time. These things could have not been easy for even Paul to forget, and no doubt were on the minds of all the other disciples.

Paul needed someone. Paul needed Barnabas. We need a Barnabas, we need to be a Barnabas. We need to be a comforting, welcoming, soul warming glimmer of light for the Lord, in someones life, and not a flashing red, flag of condemnation.

Now, Barnabas had a divine calling as well. He was born on the Greek Island of Cyprus to a Jewish family, and the Bible tells us if we go back a little further in the book of Acts:

Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means Son of Encouragement), sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.                                                                                   Acts 4:36

Here we see that Barnabas was already being prepped to help encourage the Jew whom God had chosen to be the “Minister of Salvation” unto the Gentiles. The Church Needs More Barnabas :

Here’s what the Bible says Barnabas did first among many other things concerning Paul.  Straightway Paul preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God.But all that heard him were amazed, and said; Is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound unto the chief priests? But Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus, proving that this is very Christ. And after that many days were fulfilled, the Jews took counsel to kill him: But their laying await was known of Saul. And they watched the gates day and night to kill him. 25Then the disciples took him by night, and let him down by the wall in a basket. 26And when Saul was come to Jerusalem, he assayed to join himself to the disciples: but they were all afraid of him, and believed not that he was a disciple. Acts 9:20-26

When the religious leaders got wind of what Paul was up to they were furiously indignant, and out for more blood. This time, Paul’s blood. Here was a man hunted by his own people,  once in the same mind-set with, and same erroneous belief of who God was, now willing to die for what Jesus had shown him an opposite cause. He knew, however, that he wouldn’t die this day, as God had told him of the things he would suffer for Jesus’ name sake before he would deliver the message of the Gospel to Rome.

No, the time was not yet come, and he knew what he was supposed to do, and whom he was supposed to be with. But, they did not trust Paul at all, and Paul understood that. Paul really suffered in his mind, and heart, over the things  he had done in his past to people he wished now he could bring back, love, edify and encourage. But,that was as impossible as becoming one of the close-knit disciples of the Lord must have seemed to him at that moment. When, right before his eyes, Gods wonderful plan continued to unveil its self:

But Barnabas took him, and brought him to the apostles, and declared unto them how he had seen the Lord in the way, and that he had spoken to him, and how he had preached boldly at Damascus in the name of Jesus. And he was with them coming in and going out at Jerusalem. And he spake boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus, and disputed against the Grecians: but they went about to slay him. Which when the brethren knew, they brought him down to Caesarea, and sent him forth to Tarsus. ( After this the Bible tells us ) Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.  Acts 9:27-31

Without Barnabas standing up for Paul, the likelihood of him becoming accepted among the disciples was not good. In fact, one could have just as easily torn him down, assassinating the chance of a changed character, as many times today we are prone to see. Peter was not even about to come around such a man as this, had it not been for Barnabas.

So, the same choice is ours to make. God already ordained us to be an encourager, yet He also has given us a choice. Ruth, had Naomi, David, had Jonathan, Job, should have had three close friends who sat at his side, and suffered along with him as he was so painfully scourged physically, and spiritually, but, instead they accused him, and pointed a self discerning finger and made his pain even worse. But, what did God have to say about it?

And it was so, that after the LORD had spoken these words unto Job, the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, My wrath is kindled against thee, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath. Therefore take unto you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that ye have not spoken of me the thing which is right, like my servant Job.

So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went, and did according as the LORD commanded them: the LORD also accepted Job.

And the LORD turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before.                                 JOB 42: 7-10

Who will you be? ..an Eliphaz, a Bildad, a Zophar?  Or will you choose to be a Barnabas?

She Sails Fare Another Day

To those who sit in darkness; 

Waste deep in the drink of woe.

The light you bring shares life;

A beacon of  glimmering  hope.

You carry the torch not for selfish gain; But, foundering ships avail.

Stranded aground, gurgling sounds, off starboard in the Captains gaze…

Hips be lifted, beams a shifted; Hoist the mainsail Maties!!!

She Sails Fare Another day.

©paulwillis-2013

Iamgage#1@ veritamamo

Image#2@ jkmideast

Image#3@ Arrowfrogtmt2

‘Roll Away the Stone” Chapter 15

Why does God allow adversity? That’s a question we’ve all asked at one time, or other, in our lives. We don’t even have to be a child of God to ask that question. It seems, in fact, the number one most pondered question of all times when it comes to the quest for the meaning of life. It’s also the most widely posed question among all diverse groups who seek the meaning of life. Atheist, use it to try to prove their claims that there is no God. Agnostics, use it to try to balance the teeter tottering split rail fence rung their indecisive minds spin from possibility, to possibility, on. And, we the children of God, ask it many times from the midst of our own anguish filled tumult, and tragedies.

As hard as it is for us to accept, or, even contemplate when we are experiencing such life altering circumstances, the answer boils down to one thing.  “Faith.”  How much do you believe God’s word? Do you really believe God allows adversity in our lives to prepare us for something better in life, as His word so often alludes to?

Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place.  Psalm 66:12

Or, do we instinctively assume the Devil is behind all adversity in our lives? Although Satan may be used by God in inflicting the adversities he has devised in one of his whiles against God’s children, it is never Satan who is behind the final outcome.

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.  Romans 8:28

When we face struggles in our life, God may only be trying to get our attention. He may be trying to teach us something, or just strengthening our faith. One thing is for sure. If you are facing seemingly bad circumstances in your life as a child of God, God has something good in it for you. Once we come to realize this, and begin to respond to those difficulties rather than ask why, God’s purpose behind our sufferings begin to show.

 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.                       Romans 12:2

The Lord redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate.                                                       Psalm 34:22                       

Adversity is something none of us are immune to. The question, however, in our hearts, and minds, when adversity comes knocking should not be ..“Why does God allow this”? But, how do I best respond to it. If we get buried in the all too overwhelming questioning of why such a thing is taking place in our life, we may just miss the lesson, or message, He is trying to get us to see .

One great Biblical example that comes to mind is Joseph’s life changing dilemma of being thrown into a pit by his brothers, and then sold into slavery by some passing Midianite  merchants, to later become the Governor of Egypt as part of God’s plan to one day rescue Joseph’s family, (the seed of Jesus ) from impending famine. Joseph could never have fulfilled God’s plan in all of this had he broke down in total despondency, and defeat. But, Joseph never blamed God. Though he may have had moments of wondering, and even asking God why. Sooner or later, he used the adversity as a starting point to carry on what he knew (By Faith) was a plan devised by God. How can that be? You may ask. Because, Joseph had long since succumbed to the realization that God was with him… Joseph rested..  In the Finished Works of God.

 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.                               Genesis 50:20 

Am I saying that God is the author of all our sufferings? Not at all.

The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.      John 10:10
He never promised we would not suffer adversity. But, He does promise a perfect peace, and unexplainable joy from the hope He gives us deep down inside. The trials, and tribulations,  we go through here in this present life on earth? Maybe some of it is to keep us from being satisfied with what this world has to offer. Which all too often, because of abounding worldly evil, and selfish rebellion to God’s moral standards, includes suffering and pain. The next time you find yourself struggling with something heartbreaking, or too hard to understand, instead of complaining, or asking why▬ strive to be closer to Him. Because here, now, and forever. That is the absolute best place in the world to be.

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.                                          Revelation 21:4

Dandy Lion, Your Seed Has Been Received

 

Like a Dandy Lion;  Seeds blowing in the wind…
We are here for a moment..
Blown asunder… Our stems bend…Ashleyp915
Floating gracefully our sprites do list…
All hollowed wonder, pondering the mist…
It comes as freshness. Replenishing our slumber. No longer a need for us to wonder. Peace and lighted wings of fire…Do you think He’ll let you fall?  Rest natural child..the Super-Natural Father has a plan. He’ll inform you. He has control of it all.  And in all. Peace.  You’ll see, has no end.

©

“Roll Away the Stone” Chapter 9

Why is it so very important for us to accept Jesus as the loving, forgiving, eternal life giving son of God He tells us through His word He is? Why is it important to know Jesus, and to take Him at His word, rather than to listen and accept Him as only the wise, gentle, good man that many lost wanderer’s would have us to believe ? “I believe that Jesus was one of the best men to ever walk on the earth.” I’ve heard many say. “But the son of God?” “No way.” They proclaim. “He was just a great man who walked a straight line, loved everyone and told the truth.”

Wait! If we believe Jesus was the greatest most honorable man to walk the face of the earth in His own physical life time, and was about truth, then how can we overlook the fact that if this is all He was .. then He was a liar?

I’ve heard many similar opinions expressed about Jesus being the greatest man to ever walk the earth, implicating that the Bible and His name have been eternal-ized down through the years only for that reason. I am overwhelmingly inclined to agree that Jesus was the greatest man to ever walk the face of this earth. But, to envision Him only as some preeminent glorified Jesus freak, or motivational speaker, of His time, is totally absurd. How could He even be thought of, or referred to as a man of truth, if He himself was nothing more than a liar?

If we do not take all of His word as truth from God Himself, then how can we call Him a good man? When He Himself said: “I am the way the truth and the life, and no one comes to the Father but by me.” How do we say He was not telling the truth and yet still say He was a man of truth?

Jesus said many times, in many ways, in no uncertain terms, that He is the Son of God. If we do not accept this as truth, then we can not say He was the greatest man to ever live, nor a prophet, nor a pacifist, or a gentle man of truth at all. Indeed, if we did we would only be basing our opinion of who He is, or was, on part of the information freely given to us throughout His Word. In fact, what reason would anyone in the twenty-first century have to believe in anything this man said two-thousand years ago, if we do not believe that all the things recorded by eye witnesses, and those who actually heard Him speak were truthful testimonies?

I pose this thought for all who have listened to the many confusing voices, and opinions, and can’t get past the what ifs? and if so’s? enough to realize the all so liberating truth that either Jesus is who He tells us in His word He is, or He’s just .. a man. And, not a very good man at that. At least no better than any of us. Anyone who has any doubt in their mind as to who Jesus was, and who He is in our lives, should find much awakening, and liberation of the soul in the reality that Jesus has been written about, and esteemed through thousands of years of time as the greatest person ever to have lived.

It’s no surprise that even those who do not accept all of Jesus’ words as being truth look at His ministry on earth as being one of superb spirituality, and life changing greatness. Sadly, those who do not base what they know of Him on a sincere personal relationship beginning with a faith filled study of His word overlook the fact that, all we have in writing, that He did was recorded by eye witnesses. All of whom, (being Jewish) did so at great risk to their own personal lives and well being.  Certainly there is something greater at work in the words of the Gospel, or else none of it would be remembered, let alone preserved historically, or, religiously for two-thousand years.

What other person in the history of the world was written about more? Who else in the history of the world is esteemed as any greater man? What other religion has spanned the vastness of time in such a way that the entire world is either drawn together in its promises of love and salvation, or offended to the point of murder, war and hatred at the mention of His Name?

Incidentally, who does the Bible tell us that Jesus is?

 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.                                                                                                                                                                         John 1:1

Of course that verse alone doesn’t tell us that Jesus is the living Word, or God. Which is why all of His Word is so very important for us to read, while listening for His Spirit’s expiatory voice.

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.                                  John 1:14
And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The  Word of God.                                                                                                                                          Revelation 19:13
We only have to search His word with an open heart, and mind, to see the many places He tells us He is God. But, that is for another time and place, as the focus of this study is to help   Roll Away The Stone of doubt, false guilt, and shame from hearts, and minds, hindered from knowing the Prince of Peace.

 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.                    John 1:17

Sadly, though the truth of who Jesus is is spelled out for us throughout scripture, and that by Him alone can we be reconciled to the Father, many still can not see, or accept the redemption of His Finished Works on the Cross for them because of the simplicity of the truth therein. In reality, many can’t see the “Forrest” of salvation, for the openness of the “Tree”. The simplicity of Christ and Him Crucified. What an amazing gift of Grace. He came as human as you and I. And with His own life, fulfilled every demand of payment the Law held as a curse over each heart and soul.

For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.                                                                                                                            Galatians 3:10

 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:                                                  Galatians 3:13

My excerpts, of course, are by no means exhaustive, and should be searched and studied further in the Bible by the readers themselves. Trust me. “Like Prego…It’s in there”.

We can say with confidence and a clear conscience that we have lived with a God-given holiness and sincerity in all our dealings. We have depended on God’s grace, not on our own human wisdom. That is how we have conducted ourselves before the world, and especially toward you.                                                                                   2 Corinthians 1:12 NLT

 But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.                                               2 Corinthians 11:3 NKJV

AS FOR myself, brethren, when I came to you, I did not come proclaiming to you the testimony and evidence or mystery and secret of God [concerning what He has done through Christ for the salvation of men] in lofty words of eloquence or human philosophy and wisdom;                                                                                                                                 1 Corinthians 2:1                                                                                                                            

For I resolved to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.       1 Corinthians 2: 2 ABV

There has never been anything more simple and freely given to mankind than the redemptive plan of God through the “final atoning passover lamb.” One simple offer of eternal life and love through His Son Jesus Christ.

There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.                                                                                                                                                           Proverbs 16:25

Man can not save himself, through any amount of self righteousness, religion, rituals or self sanctifying methods.

It would be a sad eternal mistake to be blinded by the very truth that can save one from eternal death simply because one refuses to accept the simplicity God has put before us as a free gift of his grace unto eternal life.  Wouldn’t it?

For the wages of sin is death;  “BUT”  the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.                                                                                                                                              Romans 6:23

There is nothing we can do to be saved beyond believing in Jesus, as being the Son of God, and His Finished Works on the Cross for us as individuals.

I urge each of you. If you have not already accepted this simple offer from God as truth, to stop worrying about the all too many voices, and views, of what is required of us unto salvation, and just choose to let Him save you. Mans righteousness to God is like dirty laundry. Our righteousness can help another human being here on earth, and well should, but it can not save our souls.

Thy wickedness may hurt a man as thou art; And thy righteousness may profit a son of man.                                                                                                                                                       Job 35:8ASV

We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.                                                                                                                                                                 Isaiah 64:6 ESV

There is no way a person can save them self. But, through Christ, we can choose eternal life.

Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and “His” righteousness, and all these other things shall be added unto you.                                                                                                     Matthew 6:33

With a little deeper study we easily find the “Righteousness” of God spoken of here to be none other than Jesus, and the Kingdom of God which He ushered to earth at the cross.

Jesus said ..”Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free”.

You may ask. Where can I find this truth?

Jesus also said: “I am the way the truth and the Life” and no man cometh to the Father except by me”

Although many chapters, and verses reveal Jesus as God’s righteousness, Isaiah prophesied it 700 years before the birth of Jesus, so what better place to look?

As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One,  My Servant, will justify the many, As He will bear their iniquities.                                                                                                                                       Isaiah 53:11

And as far as the Kingdom of God, and where we might find it, Jesus said in many places while He was here walking the earth that the Kingdom was at hand.

But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.                                                                                                                                                                Matthew 12:28

He also in very plain words told us where to find the Kingdom of God…At least, if we “Rest” in His Finished Works at the Cross.

Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.    (Faith)                                                                                                                                       Luke 17:21                                                                                                                                         

The one thing that all of us who either are believers , or are seeking to cut through the “What  ifs” and “if So’s’ to find truth should remember is this:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.                                             John 3:16

Our faith in his finished works at the cross is the only thing that overcomes the worlds hold over us.

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.                John 16:33

because whatever has been born of God conquers the world. This is the victory that has conquered the world: our faith.                                                                                                          1 John 5:4 HCSB

© paul willis – 2013
                                                         Roll Away The Stone Chapter 1

This Cross Says God Loves You

But, can He forgive me for wrecking my life, and hurting my family for so long? Asked the young man holding a gun to his own head. Yes, said the cross, God loves you.

But, can He forgive me for hurting so many people for so long, and the things I stole from them? Asked the thief. Yes, said the cross, God loves you.

But, what about all the scars I’ve left on my own body? Asked the young girl as she slashed another bloody lesion on her leg. Yes, said the cross, God knows the hidden scars you are trying to cut away from within your soul.

But, what about the times I cursed Him, and swore there was no God? Asked the broken hearted atheist. How could He ever love, or forgive me? A broken leg heals easier than a broken heart, said the cross:  Matthew 11:28
Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.   

But, surely, He can’t love me; said the lady with the aborted child running across her broken heart, spirit and mind for the past twenty years. Yes, said the cross, your child is with God now, only waiting and praying for you to come to Him as well.

But, none of this makes any sense at all;  Said the philosophyzer, there is no logic in it to be found. Man’s logic is not God’s logic said the cross: Isaiah 55:8
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. Oh this is all just a lot of foolishness. Said the philosopher. Yes, the cross replied;     1 Corinthians 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto those which are saved it is the power of God. But, I have studied in the most prestigious Universities, and learned from the greatest professors among man, the philosopher retorted. Of course, said the cross;  :1 Corinthians 1:21 Since God in his wisdom saw to it that the world would never know him through human wisdom, he has used foolish preaching to save those who believe. In fact, the cross said: 1 Corinthians 1:27
Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful.

As the philosopher sat back down, an IRA gunman stood in his place with gun in hand, and tears in his eyes and said; I have always thought I was doing God a great justice by fighting for my cause, but, standing here before you, I am suddenly overcome with the realization that I have taken the lives of countless innocent people, for a cause that never really made sense. Surely!!. The gunman said. You’re not going to tell me that God still loves me, and will forgive me for taking those peoples lives. Are you?

The cross leaned out, touched the man over his heart, and whispered into his ear: On this cross, the world killed the Son of God, and the Son said just before He died:   Luke 23:34 “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do”

“Roll Away the Stone” Chapter 8

It ‘s funny how the Lord works, as this new post gives evidence to.  For though  I had only intended for there to be seven parts to the roll the stone away series, and never really meant to get into any of the “Numerical Significances” within Gods Word,  I now find myself writing part eight of the series after re-reading part seven and trying unsuccessfully to get some sleep.  I say funny, but amazing is a more accurate term when it comes with an ironic play of words smacking on the reality that after completing a seven part series on “Rest” I now find myself wide awake, unable to do just that.  Thankfully, this  is not the type of  “Rest”  in which the series was written about. Although, it seems to play into a God delivered paradigmatic scenario in which from my resting in Him comes the inability to fall asleep because of something that keeps ringing the spiritual alarm clock in my mind, and that being the number eight.  I know of course that it is God telling me to get up and start some research in this area, because apparently He has something more to show me before  I get any sleep tonight.

First of all, let me recap a little on part seven of  roll the stone away.   Because no other number in the Holy Bible is used with more significance, in as many compounds and unmistakable variables and equations as the number seven, (Spiritual Perfection),  and the  fact that the last area, and last word that we looked at in the previous section of the series was about entering His ” Rest” (which is also exemplified by the number seven )   the entire previous writings on the subject of this series therefore rest, if you will, on the number seven.       7=“God’s Rest”.

Hebrews 4:10
For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.


So, this being understood, where do we go from here, once we have learned to “Trust God”, thereby entering  into His rest?  To the  number eight, of course.  To a “New Beginning”.  To do so however, or at least for me to be able to take us there on paper,  I suppose a quick digression for those who do not know what the number six represents in Gods Word may be neccesary.  First of all, it is the number that represents Man, and even more descriptive of mans imperfections, and also mans enmity toward God. Six, is the number of  days in which God worked to create all things, including man, and is therefore equated to  “Works “ as well.  We see it used over and again when addressing   “Mans”  laboring to try and save himself throughout the Bible, rather than accepting and resting in Gods freely given  “Grace”, which is always symbolized numerically by the number “Five”. ( Or a product of the number five )

Now, bare with me here. It doesn’t take a degree in mathematics to see the added confirmation of Gods word through the veritable enumerations and carefully arranged analogies and symbols does it?  If  indeed it did, I  for one,  would be at a complete loss.  Albeit, probably not at a loss for words. 

Still, there is no way I would try and explain, or even begin to pretend to know all of the significances of the numbers in the Bible. There are many who are greatly more studied in that area than I am. Not to mention, much more intelligent than I, who have dedicated much time and research to offer some very informative books and web pages for our education and enlightenment.  Most of which are very detailed, easily accessible, and understood. That being said,  I’ll continue with what little knowledge in this area that God has allowed me to see, to use in this section in the way of articulating the message at hand.

As earlier stated God’s Grace is signified by the number five. Therefore if we add “One” of anything to  His  Grace, we then have the number ” six” again meaning  (Works). In the same manner, should we take any ONE thing away from “His Grace” we wind up back at the number FOUR”, which (Imagine That) represents “Created Materials “, or, in this case,  let’s just call it “Worldly Things”. Now, in terms of Salvation, which God tells us in many places, and in no uncertain terms throughout His Word can only be realized by having  “Faith” in Jesus Christ the righteousness of God,  (and His Finished Works), Well, even to a mathematically challenged believer like myself it’s apparent that “Our works” just do not add up to a hill of beans. Accepting ” His Free Gift of Salvation by His Grace” on the other hand, will fill our bellies, and lives with Spiritual Food, whereby we shall never hunger, or thirst again.               

Genesis 12:1
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee:

2And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:

The rest of the story of Abram’s life and the lives of his offspring is, well, let’s just say that it took the entire Holy Bible to contain just a small part of its physical genealogy and blessings.  Not to mention the infinite wealth of spiritual revelations.  But, now I ask you, what did Abraham do to be called out?  What did Abraham ever do to be saved once he was called out for that matter?

Romans 4:3
For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

As we already know that God is no respecter of persons, we should not find it surprising that prior to God telling Abram to come out of the “World or from the land of his family and home,  ( Which was the land of the Chaldean’s by the way)  ( Babylonia ) we do not see God speaking to Abram at all.  So what is the difference in God telling Abram to “Walk” by faith and He would take care of his every need, and Him telling us to come out of the “World” and trust in Him unto Salvation?  Personally, the only difference that I see is really the most remarkable, and loving “Gift” that one could ever think of receiving and that is the Holy Spirit living in our hearts from what Jesus laid down His life to afford us to have.

Some accuse this, the belief that I have of “Resting” In His Finished Works @ the Cross as being an ” Easy Belief ” Salvation. That’s not what I have found in my studies and walk with the Lord, at all.  What I have found from the all too many voices, and views,  which try to impute  “Our” works as the thing that “Keeps” us saved, however,  is that it imposes  a not only difficult means of salvation, but an impossible one according to Gods Word. In fact those all too many voices, and views, were the  precise things that kept me confused for so long,  and were the exact things that kept me from Resting in Christ, and the salvation that He died to give me.

Recently, I  had a friend who believes that we must perform good works to retain our salvation tell me that one can never rest, until they have reached Salvation, which to him, means a perfect sinless life, here and now.  Though, from having many discussions with this friend  I feel that most of our discussions and our belief’s differ only in semantics,  I could only answer his remark by the one thing that I know in my heart from my own experience, and that being:

One can never be saved, until they “Rest” in His Finished Works for us at the Cross.

Now let me expound on that statement.  I believe that we can be saved, but for us to continue unto “Good Works”, which are only an emulation, or actually “His” Fruits being produced through us, we must “First” Rest Secure in the Salvation, JESUS  died for us to have.


Now? Where was I?  Though I will not try and even scratch the surface of  Gods infinite numerical confirmations of His inerrant Word, I will point out “One” of them here, and it can be seen in the changing of Abrams name to Abraham by placing the 5th letter of the alphabet into Abram, or Mrb, making it Abraham, or Mhrb.  The number five in the  Hebrew alphabet  has a symbol, and its no coincidence of what that symbol is:  It is  “h”  Unmerited Grace also has a numerical symbol: Surprise Again!!! It’s the   (#5 )

 I think I have covered enough of the related Biblical numbers to get a pretty good idea of their added confirmation in Gods Word, so before I move on to the number eight’s significance, I will just add that the numerical significances we see throughout Gods word, could have never been a result of happenstance, and certainly not the cleverness of  “Man”.  God wrote the Bible through His Holy Spirit inspired writers. All of whom I might add, would fall under the “Gematria” of the number “Eight”. To just touch on what this means,  I will only say that all of Gods people throughout the Bible fall under that same “Gematria”. Those who rebelled, or were still under the curse of the Law of  Sin and Death, or in any way presented in His Word as to be of apostasy, or perdition fall under the number  “thirteen”.  We can see this beginning  as early in His Word as Genesis.  The numerical value of all the names in the line of  Seth are in multiples of the number “Eight”, wherein all those in Cain’s line are in multiples of  “Thirteen“.  Also, it is interesting that Adam, who lived 930 years, lived 130 of those years during Cain’s life, and lived 800 (New Beginning) years after Seth was born. Also, the Gematria of the names;  Seth, Noah, and Japheth, collectively is 888, but when Ham is added into the equation, it is  936,  while  still a multiple of  8, it changes the Gematria to being also a multiple of the number 13, as well as the number 9, which is the number for Judgment. It may be of interest to note also, that …The Figure 8, is also thought of as the symbol for eternity.

Well, as you can see, this is an endless area of study, and certainly not to be absorbed in the minds of any of us at least in a complete and exhaustive capacity without a more careful personal study.  So, I will just “Rest” it here, for the time being, and let you do your own study in your own time and capacity. God Bless, oh by the way… the Gematria of the name JESUS equates to 888, I pray that you “Rest” in Him, therefore, going on to become like Him, in the provided power that He died to afford you.  We can live a victorious life through Jesus, who has given us a “New Beginning”.

Roll The Stone Away Chapter 9>>>>

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Who is Jesus?

Why is it so very important for us to accept Jesus as the loving, forgiving, eternal life giving son of God He tells us through His word He is ? Why is it important to know Jesus, and to take Him at His word, rather than to listen and accept Him as only the wise, gentle, good man that many lost wanderer’s would have us to believe ? “I believe that Jesus was one of the best men to ever walk on the earth.” I’ve heard many say. “But the son of God?” “No way.” They proclaim. “He was just a great man who walked a straight line, loved everyone and told the truth.”

Wait! If we believe Jesus was the greatest most honorable man to walk the face of the earth in His own physical life time, and was about truth, then how can we overlook the fact that if this is all He was .. then He was a liar?

I’ve heard many similar opinions expressed about Jesus being the greatest man to ever walk the earth, implicating that the Bible and His name have been eternal-ized down through the years only for that reason. I am overwhelmingly inclined to agree that Jesus was the greatest man to ever walk the face of this earth. But, to envision Him only as some preeminent glorified Jesus freak, or motivational speaker, of His time, is totally absurd. How could He even be thought of, or referred to as a man of truth, if He himself was nothing more than a liar?

If we do not take all of His word as truth from God Himself, then how can we call Him a good man? When He Himself said: “I am the way the truth and the life, and no one comes to the Father but by me.” How do we say He was not telling the truth and yet still say He was a man of truth?

Jesus said many times, in many ways, in no uncertain terms, that He is the Son of God. If we do not accept this as truth, then we can not say He was the greatest man to ever live, nor a prophet, nor a pacifist, or a gentle man of truth at all. Indeed, if we did we would only be basing our opinion of who He is, or was, on part of the information freely given to us throughout His Word. In fact, what reason would anyone in the twenty-first century have to believe in anything this man said two-thousand years ago, if we do not believe that all the things recorded by eye witnesses, and those who actually heard Him speak were truthful testimonies?

I pose this thought for all who have listened to the many confusing voices, and opinions, and can’t get past the what ifs? and if so’s? enough to realize the all so liberating truth that either Jesus is who He tells us in His word He is, or He’s just .. a man. And, not a very good man at that. At least no better than any of us. Anyone who has any doubt in their mind as to who Jesus was, and who He is in our lives, should find much awakening, and liberation of the soul in the reality that Jesus has been written about, and esteemed through thousands of years of time as the greatest person ever to have lived.

It’s no surprise that even those who do not accept all of Jesus’ words as being truth look at His ministry on earth as being one of superb spirituality, and life changing greatness. Sadly, those who do not base what they know of Him on a sincere personal relationship beginning with a faith filled study of His word overlook the fact that, all we have in writing, that He did was recorded by eye witnesses. All of whom, (being Jewish) did so at great risk to their own personal lives and well being.  Certainly there is something greater at work in the words of the Gospel, or else none of it would be remembered, let alone preserved historically, or, religiously for two-thousand years.

What other person in the history of the world was written about more? Who else in the history of the world is esteemed as any greater man? What other religion has spanned the vastness of time in such a way that the entire world is either drawn together in its promises of love and salvation, or offended to the point of murder, war and hatred at the mention of His Name?

Incidentally, who does the Bible tell us that Jesus is?

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.                                                                                                                                                                        John 1:1

Of course that verse alone doesn’t tell us that Jesus is the living Word, or God. Which is why all of His Word is so very important for us to read, while listening for His Spirit’s expiatory voice.

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.                                  John 1:14

And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.                                                                                                                                         Revelation 19:13
We only have to search His word with an open heart, and mind, to see the many places He tells us He is God. But, that is for another time and place, as the focus of this study is to help   Roll Away The Stone of doubt, false guilt, and shame from hearts, and minds, hindered from knowing the Prince of Peace.

For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.                    John 1:17

Sadly, though the truth of who Jesus is is spelled out for us throughout scripture, and that by Him alone can we be reconciled to the Father, many still can not see, or accept the redemption of His Finished Works on the Cross for them because of the simplicity of the truth therein. In reality, many can’t see the “Forrest” of salvation, for the openness of the “Tree“. The simplicity of Christ and Him Crucified. What an amazing gift of Grace. He came as human as you and I. And with His own life, fulfilled every demand of payment the Law held as a curse over each heart and soul.

For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.                                                                                                                           Galatians 3:10

 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:                                                  Galatians 3:13

My excerpts, of course, are by no means exhaustive, and should be searched and studied further in the Bible by the readers themselves. Trust me. “Like Prego…It’s in there”.

We can say with confidence and a clear conscience that we have lived with a God-given holiness and sincerity in all our dealings. We have depended on God’s grace, not on our own human wisdom. That is how we have conducted ourselves before the world, and especially toward you.                                                                                   2 Corinthians 1:12 NLT 

 But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.                                               2 Corinthians 11:3 NKJV

AS FOR myself, brethren, when I came to you, I did not come proclaiming to you the testimony and evidence or mystery and secret of God [concerning what He has done through Christ for the salvation of men] in lofty words of eloquence or human philosophy and wisdom;                                                                                                                                 1 Corinthians 2:1                                                                                                                            

For I resolved to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.      1 Corinthians 2: 2 ABV

There has never been anything more simple and freely given to mankind than the redemptive plan of God through the “final atoning passover lamb.” One simple offer of eternal life and love through His Son Jesus Christ.

There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.                                                                                                                                                          Proverbs 16:25

Man can not save himself, through any amount of self righteousness, religion, rituals or self sanctifying methods.

It would be a sad eternal mistake to be blinded by the very truth that can save one from eternal death simply because one refuses to accept the simplicity God has put before us as a free gift of his grace unto eternal life.  Wouldn’t it?

For the wages of sin is death;  “BUT”  the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.                                                                                                                                                  Romans 6:23

There is nothing we can do to be saved beyond believing in Jesus, as being the Son of God, and His Finished Works on the Cross for us as individuals.

I urge each of you. If you have not already accepted this simple offer from God as truth, to stop worrying about the all too many voices, and views, of what is required of us unto salvation, and just choose to let Him save you. Mans righteousness to God is like dirty laundry. Our righteousness can help another human being here on earth, and well should, but it can not save our souls.

Thy wickedness may hurt a man as thou art; And thy righteousness may profit a son of man.                                                                                                                                                      Job 35:8ASV

We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.                                                                                                                                                               Isaiah 64:6 ESV

There is no way a person can save them self. But, through Christ, we can choose eternal life.

Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and “His” righteousness, and all these other things shall be added unto you.                                                                                                    Matthew 6:33

With a little deeper study we easily find the “Righteousness” of God spoken of here to be none other than Jesus, and the Kingdom of God which He ushered to earth at the cross.

Jesus said ..“Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free”.

You may ask. Where can I find this truth?

Jesus also said: “I am the way the truth and the Life” and no man cometh to the Father except by me”

Although many chapters, and verses reveal Jesus as God’s righteousness, Isaiah prophesied it 700 years before the birth of Jesus, so what better place to look?

As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One,  My Servant, will justify the many, As He will bear their iniquities.                                                                                                                                      Isaiah 53:11

And as far as the Kingdom of God, and where we might find it, Jesus said in many places while He was here walking the earth that the Kingdom was at hand.

But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.                                                                                                                                                               Matthew 12:28
He also in very plain words told us where to find the Kingdom of God…At least, if we “Rest” in His Finished Works at the Cross.
Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.    (Faith)                                                                                                                                     Luke 17:21                                                                                                                                         

The one thing that all of us who either are believers , or are seeking to cut through the “What  ifs” and “if So’s’ to find truth should remember is this:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.                                            John 3:16

Our faith in his finished works at the cross is the only thing that overcomes the worlds hold over us.

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.                John 16:33

because whatever has been born of God conquers the world. This is the victory that has conquered the world: our faith.                                                                                                   1 John 5:4 HCSB

 

Would you like to Rest Secure in the Finished Works of Jesus?(surveys)

We can all have victory: His Name is Jesus.

GOD BLESS

sonsothunder