We are called to pray for those in authority. It’s particularly helpful to do this during the corporate worship gathering…
Source: Pray for Those in Authority
We are called to pray for those in authority. It’s particularly helpful to do this during the corporate worship gathering…
Source: Pray for Those in Authority
I probably do not say this often enough, I post articles like this to inform not to gossip or degrade Joe Biden and certainly not the office of the President. We need to be on constant prayer for Joe Biden, his administration, the Congress, the SCOTUS, and the United States as a whole.
When President Joe Biden took the podium in Washington on Monday, he probably had no intention of telegraphing to the country just how much contempt he has for Americans…
I have decided to do things different today. There are two main themes in today’s verse: First is God answers prayers and Second is God is with us. Of course some context is needed, God has called upon Jacob to fulfill his promise/vow Jacob had made to God some 20 years earlier. So Jacob tells his house that they are going to Bethel to build this alter.
Below are two lists 100+ verses each concerning God answering prayers and being with His chosen people. I have added two of my favorites along with a short comment.
1 John 5:14-15 ESV And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.
I can never emphasize enough to fellow believers the fact that our petitions to God need to be in HIS will not ours. I hear it all the time I want to follow Jesus, but they don’t want to follow his example at Gethsemane, …“My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”
Should we not pray as Jesus?
Joshua 1:9 ESV Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
It is pretty hard not to draw strength from that verse, yet SOOOOO many folks fail to read it in CONTEXT. When one reads Joshua 1:1-9, we see that God’s commission to Joshua demands obedience to the Law v.7-8; Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success[a] wherever you go. 8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Clearly God is saying, if you want my protection, if you want me to walk with you daily, obey my laws.
Are we not under the same obligation today?
CONTEXT: Paul in Chapter 2 tells the church at Corinth to rely on Christ’s wisdom and the leading of the Holy Spirit. Paul could have said look to me, my teachings but then the focus shifts from God to man. Our text makes it clear that those without God think the things of God foolishness.
Matthew Henry breaks it down as follows: The apostle proceeds with his argument in this chapter, and, I. Reminds the Corinthians of the plain manner wherein he delivered the gospel to them (v. 1-5). But yet, II. Shows them that he had communicated to them a treasure of the truest and highest wisdom, such as exceeded all the attainments of learned men, such as could never have entered into the heart of man if it had not been revealed, nor can be received and improved to salvation but by the light and influence of that Spirit who revealed it (v. 6 to the end).
This is an important verse for every believer. Why you ask, three things I would suggest:
Spiritual Discernment, in short, is the decision making process based upon guidance by the Holy Spirit. It differs from that of Biblical Discernment which is the decision making process based upon Biblical knowledge. Whereas one can grow in Biblical Discernment (study, meditate etc.) only God can increase Spiritual Discernment. Every True Christian should be praying daily for an increase in Spiritual Discernment.
CONTEXT: The major theme of Nehemiah 1 is Nehemiah’s prayer. We get that from historical context and written word. Here is the Enduring Word Commentary’s; intro to Nehemiah:
A. Nehemiah hears of Jerusalem’s crisis condition.
1. Some 1,000 years after the time of Moses and some 400 years before the birth of Jesus, the nation of Israel and the Jewish people were in a desperate state.
a. Their nations were destroyed, First the northern Jewish kingdom of Israel and then the southern Jewish kingdom of Judah. The city of Jerusalem was completely conquered by the Babylonians and the once-glorious temple of Solomon was destroyed.
b. When the Babylonians conquered Jerusalem, they deported almost everyone from the city and the region – for some 70 years, Jerusalem was something of a ghost town, with the potential to end up like many ancient cities – completely forgotten except to history.
c. When the Jews were deported to Babylon, they began to make homes for themselves there. They settled down, and many still followed the God of their Fathers, but they did it from Babylon, with no desire to return to the land God had promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
d. But after 70 years of captivity in Babylon, they were given the opportunity to return to their homeland, the Promised Land. Out of some two or three million Jews deported from the land, only 50,000 decided to return to the Promised Land. That’s only something like 2%! But they did return, and in the days of Ezra, they rebuilt the temple and laid a spiritual foundation for Israel once again.
e. The Book of Nehemiah begins 15 years after the Book of Ezra ends; almost 100 years after the first captives came back to the Promised Land; and some 150 years after the city of Jerusalem was destroyed. After this long time, the walls of the city of Jerusalem were still in rubble.
f. Some of these faithful Jews were raised up to places of prominence in the governments they were deported to. Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego became leaders in Babylon; Esther was made queen in the courts of a Persian king.
Matthew Henry breaks down the verses as follows: Here we first meet with Nehemiah at the Persian court, where we find him, I. Inquisitive concerning the state of the Jews and Jerusalem (v. 1, 2). II. Informed of their deplorable condition (v. 3). III. Fasting and praying thereupon (v. 4), with a particular account of his prayer (v. 5-11). Such is the rise of this great man, by piety, not by policy.
BY RICHARD SIBBES
O Lord, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant, and to the prayer of thy servants, who desire to fear thy name; and prosper, I pray thee, thy servant this day, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.—NEH. 1:11.
DELIVERED ON SUNDAY MORNING, JULY 15, 1866,
BY C.H. SPURGEON,
AT THE METROPOLITAN TABERNACLE, NEWINGTON
“Oh that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat!
I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments.”
CONTEXT: The book of Joel was the telling of God’s judgment upon His chosen people (Israel), the pagan nations that surrounded them, and the eventual outpouring of the Holy Spirit (restoration of God’s people) Acts 2. Matthew Henry breaks chapter 2 down as follows: God’s judgments. (1-14) Exhortations to fasting and prayer; blessings promised. (15-27) A promise of the Holy Spirit, and of future mercies. (28-32)
I want to look at just v.1 this morning because I think they are applicable to all of us today.
Blow the trumpet in Zion [warning of impending judgment], Sound an alarm on My holy mountain [Zion]! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble and shudder in fear, For the [judgment] day of the Lord is coming; It is close at hand,(AMP)
Judgment by way of the “Day of the Lord” is the predominant theme of the book of Joel. Israel (1:15; 2:1–2) and all the nations (3:2–3) are subject to this judgment. While most associate the “Day of the Lord” with wrath and judgments it can also be a day of salvation and restoration.
Here in chapter 2 v.1, the context is definitely judgment and wrath that Joel is warning against. Israel had become complacent AGAIN, it had fallen back into the sins of its surrounding neighbors and Joel sires out a warning Blow the trumpet in Zion, (any temple, pulpit, or corner will do) Sound an alarm on My holy mountain, we too must be able, ready and willing at every moment to speak out against the anti-Christ. For the [judgment] day of the Lord is coming, God cannot abide sin, nor sinners. The old saying God Loves the Sinner But Hates the Sin? is far from true and He must and will pass judgment on everyone.
Of course, no one knows when the final judgment “day of the Lord” will come but we must (All True Believers) act like it is today. Spiritual Complacency has plagued the “church” for far too long in America. Oh, we are good at giving, missions, and feeding the poor. We respond well to national disasters and the like but do not ask us to get involved in the BIG PICTURE, the moral issues of today.
It is time we, All True Believers, Shout is from the Blogs, Corners, and Pulpits; that we demand that the core values America was founded upon, the Judeo-Christian principles be returned before the Wrath of God, the final judgment, the “day of the Lord” is poured out upon this nation and people.
It’s easiest to get into a conversation when someone speaks to us first. God speaks to us in His Word; and if we pray with an open Bible, we don’t need to think of words to pray to Him. We can simply respond to what…
As hurricane Ida made landfall (and heads towards us in mid Mississippi) I had the thought of how powerful God is. I for one am convinced that God is Sovereign over all things including hurricanes, even if I don’t understand the why. What I do know is we can count on His omnipotent Grace to see us through these events.
Chapter CONTEXT: Matthew Henry says of this Chapter: A salutation, and an account of saving blessings, as prepared in God’s eternal election, as purchased by Christ’s blood. (1-8) And as conveyed in effectual calling: this is applied to the believing Jews, and to the believing Gentiles. (9-14) The apostle thanks God for their faith and love, and prays for the continuance of their knowledge and hope, with respect to the heavenly inheritance, and to God’s powerful working in them. (15-23)
Our text for today is one extolling God’s omnipotence. A google search or that of some Biblical software will lead one to find a list with many variations of verses. The consistent theme however is that God is all-powerful and man is not.
Here are some of the things God has power over:
The above quote sums it up pretty well if God is not the omnipotent ruler of the universe what peace can a believer have. What assurance can we have, what joy? I do not know about you but I take great comfort in the fact that He hath made the earth by his power and ruleth by his power forever.
Praying for everyone in Ida’s path and recovery for those displaced by her wrath.
CONTEXT: Most folks I know can quote or at least paraphrase v.15 from this Chapter ‘the battle belongs to the Lord.’ While this makes a good theme it is not the central theme of this Chapter, by context Faith is the main theme. The Chapter can be divided as follows: The Enemy advances v.1-4; Jehoshaphat Prayers v.5-13; God answers prayer v.14-19; War and Victory v.20-29; End of Jehoshaphat’s reign v.30-37.
I say Faith is the main theme because of the facts we know from the text. The nation of Judah (Israel) was about to be invaded so what does Jehoshaphat do? Does he run, does he hide, does he wine and whimper, of course not he takes action. What kind of action, PRAYER v.3; And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord,… A wise ruler always seeks wise counsel in times of trouble. Jehoshaphat had 3 Armies coming against him I think this was a good time for seeking HELP!
Note that Jehoshaphat does not go it alone, v.4 And Judah gathered themselves together, to ask help of the Lord:… It is always wise to seek the support of like-minded individuals and those who may be experiencing similar issues to pray alongside you. Read v.5-13 Jehoshaphat’s Prayer (pleading with God) and you can see the heartfelt sincerety in it. Jehoshaphat confessed Judah’s (and his) inability to deal with the coming threat. That is the FAITH I was speaking about. Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah called upon the Lord to HELP, fully expecting His assistance.
I suppose I would be remiss if I failed to mention v.15 in context. Does ‘the battle always belong to the Lord’? One of the popular evangelical catchphrases that irks me to no end is “Let Go and let God.” While it may seem harmless it really is not very Biblical. In our text today (and throughout the Bible) God responds to prayer. I call this God’s Providential Grace. Unless God chose someone for a specific task, Jonah, for example, the application of this Grace is applied in every other example as a response to prayer. Yes, ‘the battle belongs to the Lord‘ it always has and always will, but we can not just give up the fight sit back in our lazy-boy recliner and expect God to do the work. We need, as individuals, churches, and a nation to be more like Jehoshaphat prayer warriors willing to fight the good fight.
CONTEXT: Chapter 4 continues where 3 leaves off, reminding the reader that seeking after self, worldly gains, and wisdom will only lead to conflict within the church and their personal lives. Matthew Henry divides it as follows: Here are cautions against corrupt affections, and love of this world, which is enmity to God. (1-10) Exhortations to undertake no affairs of life, without constant regard to the will and providence of God. (11-17)
Before we briefly look at the specifics of our main verse, let me caution the reader that the text is not implying that humility equals being a pushover, a do-nothing, or someone who never speaks up. As always I implore you to read the Whole Counsel of God, Christ Jesus was anything but one of those things, yet He carried out His assigned duties on earth with great Humility.
But he giveth more grace. That is God will always provide more Grace to both believer and non-believer (Common Grace) but especially the effectual Grace needed for Salvation and a lasting relationship with the Triune God.
Wherefore he saith, God declares
God resisteth the proud, those who are so self-absorbed that they scoff at the notion of God. Psalm 1:1, Romans 1:18
but giveth grace unto the humble. those who will admit that apart from Christ they love the Darkside. John 3:17-21. It can be hard to “Back down” from our self-righteous, self-imposed throne, but that is exactly what God expects of His Children. To humble themselves as obedient children like Christ did Philippians 2:5-7.
We must pray for the grace of self-denial.
Lord, give us to seek, not our own good only, but also the good of our neighbor. 1 Corinthians 10:24(ESV)
And grant that we may not live to ourselves or die to ourselves, but whether we live or die, we may be the Lord’s, and may live and die to him. Romans 14:7-8(ESV)
We must pray for humility and meekness.
Lord, give us to learn from Christ to be gentle and lowly in heart, that we may find rest for our souls; Matthew 11:29(ESV) and that herein the same mind may be in us that was also in Christ Jesus. Philippians 2:5(ESV)
Lord, conceal pride from us, Job 33:17(ESV) and clothe us with humility; 1 Peter 5:5(ESV) and put upon us the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in your sight is very precious. 1 Peter 3:4-5(ESV)
Lord, give us grace to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which we have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love. Ephesians 4:1-2(ESV)
Let anger never lodge in our bosoms, Ecclesiastes 7:9(ESV) nor the sun ever go down on our anger; Ephesians 4:26(ESV) but enable us to show perfect courtesy toward all people, because we ourselves were once foolish and disobedient. Titus 3:2-3(ESV)
Let us be clothed as becomes the elect children of God, holy and beloved, with compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, Colossians 3:12(ESV) that being merciful, even as our heavenly Father is merciful, Luke 6:36(ESV) we may be perfect as he is perfect. Matthew 5:48(ESV)