9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,
10 so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ,
In theses two verses we have one of the most important truths about walking in the God-kind of love that many believers are unaware of, or do not understand. Many Christians think that walking in the love of God means we are to be everyone’s friend, and never say anything that may offend someone or hurt their feelings. Please look carefully at the above verses. We are told here that our love is to abound with knowledge and discernment, so that we may remain pure and blameless when Christ returns.
You see many believers do not understand we are to have knowledge of God’s Word about the love of God, what it looks like, and use discernment when walking in God’s love. Many do not have this knowledge, nor do they use discernment when walking in the love of God. For example, Proverbs 12:26 tells us that the righteous (believers) should choose their friends carefully, for those who live sinful lives will lead you astray. If you don’t walk in the knowledge of God’s Word and discernment, and you have friends who live sinful lives, they often lead the believer down the same path.
In Galatians 6:1 we are also told if someone is overtaken by sin, we are to try and help restore them back to God. To do so you will have to confront the sin. This may offend them at first, but if they repent you have helped to restore them back to God. This is God’s love in action. We are told to speak the Truth in love. Jesus told more than one person to go and sin no more. Many think to address wrongful behavior is not walking in love, but not doing so is not waking in the knowledge of God’s love. So learn to walk in knowledge and discernment with the love of God, and you can save yourself and others from the destructive and harmful works of sin.
What are you captured by? When your heart is captured by God, He has all of you, and you can experience all of Him.
As a believer, we are often waiting on God, when God is waiting on us. He has already provided all things that pertain to life and godliness. We just need to realize that “You’ve Already Got It”.
1 Peter 1:18-19
18 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers,
19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.
Six different times Jesus shed His blood for us and each time a payment was being made to redeem or deliver us. The first time blood was shed was in the garden of Gethsemane where Jesus was praying about going to the cross. He prayed not His will but the Fathers will be done, and as He prayed in agony the Bible says He sweat drops of blood. Jesus paid to deliver us from our own human will so that we could live in the Father’s will for us. Then He being arrested was scourged at the whipping post, paying the price for our healing, for by His stripes we are healed.
After this the soldiers put a crown of thorns upon His head and blood flowed out paying the price for us to have a renewed mind as scripture teaches us that we have the mind of Christ. Then He was crucified, nails driven through His hands so that we could live free from the dominion of sin, for the Bible says we are to lift up holy hands to the Lord. They drove a nail through His feet and He provided for us authority over evil, for Luke 10:19 tells us we can trample upon all the powers of darkness.
Finally they pierced His side near the heart and the blood that poured out delivered us from the old spirit man within and purchased for us a new spirit. The key to walking in all He has purchased is to simply agree with God that all these things are already done, for the Word of God tells us we already are redeemed. We must also act upon His Word, for faith without corresponding action is dead. May you walk in the liberty of all Christ has freed you from through His precious blood He shed for you.
43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into.
44 Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
Scripture is very clear that no one but the Father knows the day that the Lord will return to catch away His church. What we do know and everyone agrees on is that He is coming back. Jesus describes this event like a thief coming in the night, and if we knew when that thief would come we would be prepared, and then He tells us to be ready for the Son of Man will come at an hour we do not expect. He describes two people in different settings right before these verses where one is taken but the other is left behind.
Recently the Lord impressed upon my heart two questions. If you knew that He would return within the next seven days, would you live differently this coming week? If you would live differently why? If you answer the first question yes, the second question is very important, because if you would live differently, then why are we not living that way now? The why is the issue we need to deal with that is keeping us from living the life we should be living.
Many believers are not living like a Christ follower. Many are living the life of a lukewarm believer, because God is not a priority in their life. If they knew Jesus was coming next week I think many would change the way they are living. Don’t procrastinate any longer and continue to have other things more important to you then God, for Jesus said He will come at a hour you do not expect, so be ready. Are you watching?
Matthew 16:16, 18
16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
18 …upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.
Jesus had asked His disciples who other men had claimed He was. Some thought He was John the Baptist, and others thought one of the prophets. Jesus then asked who they thought He was. Peter declared that He was the Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus tells Peter that he did not get this revelation by natural means, but from the Father. Then He declares that it is upon this rock He will build His church, and the powers of hell itself will not prevail against it.
The rock that the church stands on and overcomes all the powers of darkness with is the revelation of Jesus as the Christ. The word Christ means Messiah, Anointed One, and deliverer. When you get to know Jesus for who God anointed Him to be and what He accomplished for us, the powers of hell and the devil himself cannot prevail against you. Many know about Jesus, or know of Him in a religious way, but they don’t know Him as the One sent by God to defeat death, hell, and the grave, so that we can live a life of victory and not succumb to evil and be defeated.
In getting to know Jesus and His mission here on earth, we come to know ourselves better. He is the head, we are His body. The head needs the body to fulfill His purpose of setting captives free, and making His enemies His footstool. We like Jesus have the same Holy Spirit that has anointed us, so that we can go and do what Jesus did, defeating the works of darkness. It is on this revelation that this Anointed One lives in us, that will cause the church to triumph over the powers of darkness.
Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
One of the easiest ways to keep the devil and his works out of your life is found in this verse of scripture. It is known as the power of positive resistance. Every time you submit your life to the ways of God, you are automatically resisting the devil. The things God wants you to do the devil does not want you to do.
For example, God’s Word teaches that we should find our pastor and be in church. Satan does not want you in God’s house, so when you go to church you submit to God and automatically resist the devil. God wants us to forgive, give to the work of God, present our bodies as a living sacrifice unto Him, etc; and as we do the things God’s Word teaches us, we are automatically resisting satan who wants us to do the opposite.
The opposite of this verse is true as well. What if you know you should be in a good church but don’t go? What if you know you should forgive, and give to the work of God but you don’t? Then you would be submitting to the devil’s ways and resisting God. Some people don’t realize their biggest problem isn’t the devil, it’s the fact that they are not resisting him by choosing to submit to God. You can resist the devil by simply submitting your life to the will of God. When you do he will flee.
If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is worthless.
To walk by faith you must believe in your heart what God’s Word says, but if you deceive your own heart you won’t have faith in God. James tells us we must deal with our tongue to keep from deceiving our hearts. If we speak contrary to God’s Word, we convince our heart God’s Word is not true, which is deception. How do we change our words?
To change our words we must change our thinking for our thoughts will determine what we believe, and what we believe will come out of our mouth. There are three primary influences that wrongly affect our thinking. They are observation, association, and falsification. Observation means what we look at or focus on. If we spend our time watching T.V. and movies for example that are filled with sex and violence and lies, this will begin to cause us to believe those things are ok, but this deception will lead to wrong thinking.
The second thing that affects our thinking is associations. Scripture teaches us to choose our friends carefully for even the wicked will lead you astray. Wrong friends will cause you to be deceived. The third area is falsification, which refers to false teachings from God’s Word where people are not taught the truth, but are taught man-made religion instead. Many today don’t believe in the promises we have been given through Christ, for they were taught such things passed away.
So to guard your heart from deception you must address observations, associations, and falsifications. Right thinking leads to right believing, right believing leads to right speaking, and right speaking will bring right results in your life.
For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us;…
When God breathed into Adam the breath of life, the first thing Adam saw was the face of God. This is were man’s identity came from, his Creator. When Adam sinned, the bible says he hid himself from the presence of God, which that word in the Hebrew means the face of God. Man now looked to the creation, turning away from the Father for his identity. He could not see God’s face. But Jesus did something about that.
Hebrews 9:24 tells us Jesus went before the presence (face) of God for us. Jesus provided the way for us to find our value and worth again from our Father, our Creator, and not the creation. By cleansing us of our old sinful spirit man within, He reconnected us with the Father. When you are trying to find your worth in life through things or other people, you will never be fulfilled, for we were designed by God to find our worth by identifying with Him.
How do we see His face today? Look to God’s Word, for Jesus is the Word made flesh, especially looking to the New Testament which tells you who you now are in Christ. Jesus said if you have seen Me, you have seen the Father. You are a new creation, more than a conqueror, one spirit with the Lord. So don’t look to the things of this life nor people to find your worth, look to your Creator by looking to His Word.
But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises.
Under the Old Testament the children of Israel were given the promise of God’s provision, healing, protection, and more. We don’t have any less available to us then they had, for we have a better covenant with even better promises, not less. The promises we have been given in the new covenant are based on what Christ has done for us, not what we have done. We receive these promises by faith in Christ Jesus, the One who shed His blood to purchase every promise.
One of the keys to faith is no longer seeing what we have in Christ as a promise, for that would put it off into the future, but a purchased possession. Faith takes what we have been given promise of, and sees it as a present day reality, for faith brings everything into the present tense. “Now” faith is (Heb. 11:1). Faith is of the heart for man believes in his heart and confession is made unto what God has said. We are simply agreeing with God that we have what Christ has purchased for us.
Feed on the Word until it becomes real to your inner man. You need to take the promises of God found in the New Testament and continue to meditate on those truths, declaring to yourself that they are yours now. You need to see them by the eye of faith as already a part of your life. Choose to walk by faith and not by sight, acting upon what God’s Word says is yours, and you can receive all that God has provided for you through Christ Jesus.