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It is not very difficult to imagine what it must have been like on earth before Jesus came; all we have to do is to go into any area of this earth, where He has not been invited to shine His Light and Glory; for when Jesus comes in, so does His Glory, Grace, and Truth, as well as all His Divine attributes!  Verse 4 + 9 + 16 says, “In Him (Jesus) was Life, and the Life was the Light of men. There was the true Light (Jesus) which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. He was in the world, and the world was made through Him (Jesus), and the world did not know Him. For of His fullness we have all received, and Grace upon Grace.” The Word of God tells us of a great distinct difference between Light and darkness, and good and evil in the world, as in Isaiah 60: 1 – 3: saying, “Arise, shine, for your Light has come, and the Glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold, darkness will cover the earth, and deep darkness the peoples; but the Lord will rise upon you, and the Glory of the Lord will appear upon you. And all nations will come to your Light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.” This is so evident from the time of Jesus on earth, by the myriads of people who came to Him for healing, deliverance, and restoration, as in Matthew 4: 23 – 25: saying, “And…

Only the Lord’s undertaking in one’s life from earliest years can satisfy the understanding that our minds demand of it. Most of us who are Christians, and now have children of our own, are only beginning to look back with wonder at how God’s Hand prevailed in our lives. There is no way that we should have survived many situations, illnesses or accidents, even from a very young age. And yet here we are through God’s Grace, kept for such a time as this. Psalm 117: 2: says, “For His Lovingkindness is great toward us (His Love prevails over us); and the truth of the Lord is everlasting.” Psalm 139: 16: says, “Thine Eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Thy Book they were all written, the days that were appointed for me, when as yet there was not one of them.” Psalm 22: 9-10: says, “Yet Thou art He Who didst bring me forth from my mother’s womb; Thou didst make me trust when upon my mother’s breasts. Upon Thee I was cast from birth; Thou hast been my God from my mother’s womb.”  Since for some of us the days behind us are more than those ahead, all the more we should take every moment given to us as a gift to be used for God’s Glory, while we still have them to live. Psalm 37: 25: says, “I have been young, and now I am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, or his descendants begging bread.” Psalm 71:…

There is a song I remember from years back which says,” I’m going on toward the mark, toward my Home. So many lives depend on what I do; give me the strength, dear Lord, I’m going on for You.” What an eye-opener, especially when our eyes have wandered, and have been distracted by varied daily situations. We will never know what influence for Eternity we have had on anyone until we get to Heaven, but we can know for sure what the impact would be if we were to let go of our testimony here and now. Imagine our spouse, children, friends, people in the Church, family members who are closely watching us, people we have witnessed to. The list can go on forever. It is so important to know that there is always someone else that I will affect for good or for bad in my daily walk. I may deceive myself for a while that what I do as a Christian does not really matter that much to a lot of people. Hebrews 12: 1: says, “Therefore since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.” In light of these words we see that we are in a race surrounded by Heavenly witnesses, as well, urging us on. How much more important that the earthly ones watching be affected, if we take our eyes…

Imagine this, that Jesus is our Light and Salvation! How precious to know that He speaks to us in John 8: 12: saying, “I am the Light of the world, he who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of life.” That though the darkness covers the earth and deep darkness the peoples, as is spoken in Isaiah 60: 2: we may walk in His Light, and with His Light within us. There is hope for all who will call upon His Name “Jesus,” all who will call upon Him in spirit and in truth, to transfer them from the kingdom of darkness in to His Marvelous Light. I thank the Lord especially for His Holy Word which is a Lamp unto our feet and a Light to our path; Proverbs 119: 105. And 1 John 1: 7: says, “If we walk in the Light as He Himself (Jesus) is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the Blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.” Dearest Lord Jesus: let Your Light so shine within us today, that we may be kept from all deception and error which would cause us to stumble. I am so thankful that You have not left us to fend for ourselves, and that You have provided for every facet of our journey here on earth. May You be greatly glorified today through those who have chosen to walk in Your Light and Your Salvation. Glory to You alone!

What fascinating Words given to us directly by the Lord, which we have as a heritage and a vindication, as part of His Lovingkindness toward us. Heritage is described as the status, conditions, or character acquired by being born into a particular family or social class; in God we have the status of being His Heir, His Child born within His family through faith in Jesus Christ. Vindication means to clear of blame, guilt, suspicion, or doubt; to justify, correct, to defend, and maintain a cause or rights. The Lord Himself takes on the position of responsibility of being our Defender in all that pertains to our lives. It is mind-boggling to conceive that we have within our possession the ability to condemn any word that is spoken against us in judgment, and that every weapon, known or unknown, formed against us, will result in failure. Only the Lord is able to give us such Divine blessings and protection. It doesn’t mean that adversity will not come, but that He has assured us victory through it all. Isaiah 51: 7: says, “Listen to me, you who know righteousness, a people in whose heart is My Law; do not fear the reproach of man, neither be dismayed at their revilings (fierce or abusive verbal attack). Isaiah 54: 4 – 5 + 14 – 15: says, “Fear not, for you will not be put to shame; neither feel humiliated, for you will not be disgraced; but you will forget the shame of your youth, and the reproach…

For those of us who have been Christians for many years, we can attest that this “steadfast prolonged faith” in the Lord often-times has come through enduring many difficult situations and trials. As we think of years past in comparison to this day, it is not hard to see why perseverance in some may not be easily identifiable. A farmer had to persevere (some still do) behind his cultivator pulled by animals in order for him to get any type of harvest; today, most multinational companies have combines that gather vast areas of produce within hours, which in yesteryear would have taken forever I remember as a very young child an impression that came over me that the whole meaning of life was to overcome the battle that would rage against my faith in Jesus for Eternal Life. And so it has proven to be true in more ways that could ever be shared. Psalm 11: 5: says, “The Lord tests the righteous and the wicked, and the one who loves violence His Soul hates.” Proverbs 17: 3: “The refining pot is for silver, and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests hearts.” Psalm 66: 10: says, “For Thou hast tried us, O God; Thou hast refined us as silver is refined.” Jesus says in Matthew 24: 13: “But the one who endures to the end, he shall be saved.” And in Luke 21: 17 – 19: Jesus says, “And you shall be hated by all on account of My Name. Yet not a…

An amplified version of this verse says, “Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, (and) for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s Will and thought, purpose, and action). Verse 17: finishes the sentence saying, “So that the man of God may be adequate complete and proficient, well-fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work.” What an amazing insight into the great gift given to us into the purpose of the Word of God. We see clearly that it is a gift to the man of God (one who has submitted to God’s plan of salvation through Jesus Christ), so that he may be trained in righteousness (to be in right standing with God, what is pleasing to the Lord) in all aspects of God’s profitable intentions for his life. The Word teaches, reproves, and corrects to keep us aligned with God’s Will. Ephesians 6: 17: says, “And take the helmet of Salvation and the Sword that the Holy Spirit wields (with Power and authority), which is the Word of God”. The word of God is the Sword which the Holy Spirit uses with God’s Power and authority on behalf of those who choose to walk in right standing with God through faith in Jesus Christ. John 1: 1 – 4 + 12 – 14 + 16 – 17: says, “In the beginning (before all time) was the Word (Christ Jesus), and the…

How many can attest to the fact that we cannot always see quite as clearly as we would want to the way that lies ahead of us.  Any of us who are up before dawn know that unless we put the lights on, there is little that can be distinguished until we wait for the sun to rise. The only way that it gets brighter and brighter is letting the sun do what it does best, rise and shine! The waiting part is always the hardest, because we are totally dependent on the sun. So it is with the Lord, we are totally dependent on the release of His Power, in His Will, time, and place. Psalm 115: 3: says, “But God is in the Heavens; He does whatever He pleases.” He is the Maker, we are the creation. He can make the dawn last as long as He wishes it to be. Proverbs 20: 27: says, “The spirit of man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all the innermost parts of his being.” 2 Corinthians 4: 6: “For God, Who said, “Light shall shine out of darkness, “is the One who has shone in our hearts to give (beam forth) the Light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in the Face of Christ (Jesus)” John 8: 12: says, “And therefore Jesus spoke to them saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the Light if life.” Because of…

Several years ago a very successful man exiting a Limo was wished by the driver to have a good day. To the driver’s amazement he turned around and said, “I will.”  When asked how he could be so affirmative about it, his response was, “every day I plan to have a great day.” What a marvelous testimony to “resolve” in one’s life. Unfortunately there are many very successful people who have applied strategic plans for their lives, and yet know absolutely nothing about God. Our Text today emphasizes the personal choice that each one of us has to sing and give praise to the Lord for being our Strength, Stronghold, and Lovingkindness. Just as the pendulum sways from one side to the other, so we can side with what we will daily profess with our mouth. I thank the Lord for His wonderful Grace and His Holy Spirit Who continually encourage us to make the right choices, but ultimately, they are ours to make. I am amazed at the extent to which the Lord has gone to confirm and to comfort, as I made the choice to apply His Will in my life. 1 Thessalonians 5:16 – 18: very clearly shows us His Will, “Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in all things give thanks; for this is God’s Will for you in Christ Jesus.” It does not matter what the circumstances are in my life, when I willfully take a step to be obedient to the above Scripture, an immediate change for the better takes…

In this verse, as in most related to attributing gratefulness and thankfulness to the Lord, we see no mere suggestion, but rather a commandment to do so. In Psalm 15: 1: it says, “Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Thy Name give Glory because of Thy Lovingkindness, because of Thy Truth (Faithfulness).”  The focus of all Praise is continually to be reverted to the Name of the Lord from whom all blessings flow. Psalm 66: 1 – 3: says, “Make a joyful noise unto God, all the earth; sing forth the honor and glory of His Name; Make His Praise Glorious! Say to God, “How awesome and fearfully glorious are Thy works! Through the greatness of your Power shall your enemies submit themselves to You (with feigned and reluctant obedience).” Isaiah 12: 4 – 5:  says, “And in that day you will say, “Give thanks to the Lord, call upon His Name and by means of His Name (in solemn entreaty); declare and make known His deeds among the peoples of the earth, proclaim that His Name is exalted. Sing praise to the Lord, for He has done excellent things (gloriously); let this be made known to all the earth.” In Jeremiah 15: 20: the Lord in speaking to His people says, “Then I will make you to this people (enemies) a fortified wall of bronze; and though they fight against you, they will not prevail (to prove to be stronger and in the position of greater influence and power) over…

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