Cross found on all donkeys' backs?
There is legend that the crosses on these donkeys appeared after Jesus rode one into Jerusalem (read Matthew 21:1-11). There is no evidence that this is true. The dark stripe in the form of a cross was a trait in these donkeys long before Jesus lived. However, the fact that Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem is very important. It fulfilled a prophecy that was spoken 500 years before Jesus lived, and showed He was the Messiah (read Matthew 21:5 and Zechariah 9:9).
Dear Prayer Partners
1} President Obama and his advisors
2} the men & women serving in our armed forces and their families
3} Bobby- a missionary in Haiti who was flown back to the states with a broken back
4} Holly- recently gave birth to a son
5} Hailey- has Hodgkin’s lymphoma and is unable to work due to it
6} Margo- recovering from a stroke
7} Dan- has Leukemia & an inoperable brain tumor, the tumors in his stomach and lung have been removed successfully
8} Christine- recently gave birth by an emergency C-section and her new son is in critical condition
9} Living Waters A/G looking for a youth pastor with a vision to reach the youth
10} Dennis- having problems breathing
11} The Holm Family- death of a loved one from cancer
12} The DeRien Family- death of a loved one
13} The Fraley family- death of a loved one
14} Eugene- is battling cancer
15} Schimmica- husband is having an affair
16} Kevin- has some serious dental problems and is recovering from emergency oral surgery
17} Faith- is hospitalized after a heart attack and partial amputation of right foot, has a serious infection in heart, lungs and kidneys and is back on dialysis
18} Chantella- is expecting her 1st baby in the spring
19} Julianne- having difficulty with her pregnancy
20} Marc- family problems
21} Tom- problems with weight control
22} Achan- has HIV, an infection in her lungs and gall bladder is shutting down
23} Rick- has bulging disc in his back
24} Noah- a toddler having complications from heart surgery, has a very high fever
25} Frank- fighting depression
26} Gloria- hospitalized after passing out at work
27} Chaplain Sam- recovering from eye surgery
28} Chaplain Jay- preparing for a missionary trip to Uganda next year
29} For all the unspoken and personal requests that people have
30} For us at Highway Mission Outreach that we will continue have the doors opened to share the gospel and the needed finances to carry out the ministry of the mission and as we plant The Cross-Roads Chapel
31} For Michael Frankland, Gill Ainsworth, Mark Ainsworth, Tracy Ainsworth, Tony Wood, Eileen Walsh, and Elaine - break down strongholds in their lives
Opening Our Hearts to God
Psa. 19:14 - May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable before You, O Jehovah, my rock and my Redeemer.
Acts 13:22-23 - And when He had deposed him, He raised up David for them as king, to whom also He testified and said, I have found David, the son of Jesse, a man according to My heart, who will do all My will. (23) From this man's seed, God, according to promise, brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus.
~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~
Both of the above passages are related to David. Psalm 19:14
is a prayer of David, while Acts 13:22-23 is a description of
David. In David's prayer, there are the “words of my mouth”
and the “meditation of my heart,” or the thoughts of the
heart. He prayed that he would not only be kept in his words
outwardly, but also be acceptable to God in his thoughts
inwardly. The words of the mouth are an expression of the
thoughts of the heart. The heart is the root problem.
Whether or not one outwardly says the right words is not the basic problem. Whether or not one has an outward attitude in his speaking that is right is also not the basic problem. The
thoughts of the heart are the basic problem. The thoughts of
the heart constitute the root problem and cannot be overlooked. David did not merely pray, “God, may the words of my mouth be acceptable before You.” He added to the prayer, “May the meditation of my heart be acceptable before You.”
David's prayer was for the thoughts of his heart to be
acceptable before God. This is why Paul could later testify
that David was a man according to the Lord's heart. A person
who is according to God's heart allows God to touch his heart. If you will not allow God to touch your heart, it will be hard for you to be one who is according to His heart.
Many Christians ask, “Why is it wrong for me to do this? Why
is it wrong for me to say this? Why is it wrong for me to
express myself this way?” Brothers and sisters, whether or
not you are doing the right thing, saying the right thing, or
expressing yourself the right way is not the real problem.
Rather, is your heart right when you are doing such a thing,
saying such a word, or expressing yourself in such a way?
What is the condition of your heart? What is the condition of
the root? Even if you are right in every outward thing, it is
still possible for your heart to be wrong. God is touching the condition of your heart and asking about it. He allows many winds and waves to beat upon His children for this very reason.
He uses these things to touch your heart and to expose the condition of your heart.
By C.H. Spurgeon
"For thy Maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called" (Isaiah 54:5).
JESUS, the Redeemer, is altogether ours and ours for ever. All the offices of Christ are held on our behalf. He is king for us, priest for us, and prophet for us. Whenever we read a new title of the Redeemer, let us appropriate Him as ours under that name as much as under any other. The shepherd's staff, the father's rod, the captain's sword, the priest's mitre, the prince's sceptre, the prophet's mantle, all are ours.
Jesus hath no dignity which He will not employ for our exaltation, and no prerogative which He will not exercise for our defence. His fulness of Godhead is our unfailing, inexhaustible treasure-house. His manhood also, which he took upon him for us, is ours in all its perfection. To us our gracious Lord communicates the spotless virtue of a stainless character; to us he gives the meritorious efficacy of a devoted life; on us he bestows the reward procured by obedient submission and incessant service. He makes the unsullied garment of his life our covering beauty; the glittering virtues of his character our ornaments and jewels; and the superhuman meekness of his death our boast and glory. He bequeaths us his manger, from which to learn how God came down to man; and his Cross to teach us how man may go up to God. All His thoughts, emotions, actions, utterances, miracles, and intercessions, were for us.
He trod the road of sorrow on our behalf, and hath made over to us as his heavenly legacy the full results of all the labours of his life. He is now as much ours as heretofore; and he blushes not to acknowledge himself "our Lord Jesus Christ," though he is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords. Christ everywhere and every way is our Christ, for ever and ever most richly to enjoy. O my soul, by the power of the Holy Spirit, call him this morning, "thy Redeemer."
Thank you for your support and continued prayers for these new believers and this ministry!
In His vineyard,
We Shall Worship the Lord!
By John Piper
Do you delight more and more in the majesty and glory of God? Does your heart incline to worship God more consistently and intelligently and earnestly and intensely today than it did five years ago?
Is your love for your brothers and sisters in Christ abounding more and more so that you use your gifts more and more effectively to strengthen their faith and stir them up to love and good works?
And do you feel a greater burden for the lost? Are your prayers for unbelieving relatives and friends more consistent and earnest? Are your efforts to give a reason for the hope that is in you more bold, less ashamed? Are you becoming a world Christian with a zeal for the final mission thrust of the church to reach the hidden peoples?
If you can answer yes, we are making progress as a church. If not, we are failing in those areas. But at least we have goal and a definite Biblical theology behind it.
But it is not new. Listen to the way another pastor and teacher describes the meaning of membership in the church:
Membership, therefore, involves a personal obligation to promote the objects of the body as expressed in the covenant.
These objects are three:
1. The social, united worship of God...
2. The perpetuation and diffusion of the gospel...
3. The sanctification of its own members...
The church, thus comprehensive in its scope, looks upward to God, outward upon the needs of a lost world, and inward to the processes of sanctification in the souls of its own members; the neglect of any one of these grand objects of its organization imperils its whole design.
This is our philosophy of ministry. The quote is from Hezekiah Harvey, who was born in England in 1821 (The Church, 1879, reprint 1982, pp.35-36.). There is nothing modern or trendy about the priorities of our church. They have been around for two thousand years. They are tried and true, and it shouldn't bother us at all that they are not new.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
•´.¸¸.•¨¯`♥.Thank you for your prayers!.♥´¯¨•.¸¸.´•
If you are a regular reader/prayer partner, we would be
honored for you to post your pic on our link for prayer
partners at the top of the sidebar (right-hand side).
If you do not have a pic, any icon/clipart can serve as
a symbol of your devotion to those requesting prayer.
In no way does your inclusion mean that you are
endorsing this site or ALL of its content; it simply
means you are approaching the throne of Jesus
Christ with their pleas in mind. God bless you &
thanks for your meaningful work!!
In His precious name,
~Mark Seay (LighthousePrayerLine.org)
(¯`*•.(¯`*•.God is Good - ALL of the Time!!!.•*´¯).•*´¯)
"If we cannot believe God when circumstances
seem to be against us, we do not believe Him at
all" (Charles Spurgeon).
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Please keep the following individuals in your prayers:
1) "My brother who has cancer is very ill. no engery and he can eat, they gave him a vacation from cemo and radiation because of his pain. Please pray for him. Pray for me for some luck so I can visit him and my mother. Please pray for me to get some luck so I can visit them." -Jerry;
2) NN asks for our prayers. She writes, "I need prayer for our foster grandchild that will be having a hearing tomarrow to determine if he is to go back to his biological father or if he is to remain in the custody of our daughter & son-in-law. Please pray that God will instruct the people that are going to determin this child's entire future to act only in the child's best interest. We pray that he ramins in ourr family, but if it is God's will that he be removed from the loving home that he has been in since he was 1 1/2 days old (he is now 14 months old), then I pray for comfort for all who have given their heart and sould to loving this child unconditionally. Please make the tranision for him and all of the lives that he has touched, as painless as is posible if the courts do not act in our behalf. Please pray for Juan to remain a part of our family as he has changed our lives forever more. Please help the judge to see that this other family is only wanting this child for reasons tht are not on the best interest of the child. They have stated that they need him due to his biological father's girlfriend being laid off from her current job and they need more food stamps and social service assistance. The hearing begins Oct 20th at 9:00 AM. Please pray that he remains as he is now, a part of our family and a true child of God. Thank you for your prayers.";
3) "Father God thankyou for making Alida healthy and I plead the blood of Jesus Christ covering over my life and when i sleep at night keep evil away. Send your angels to protect me in Jesus name." -anonymous;
4) "Rose --is battling AML (leukemia).She has been in the hospital for 109 days. Doctors say that her bone marrow is not working and are very doubtful that it will come back. She needs a bone marrow transplant and has a donor but --- says she has to be strong enough to walk in order to get the transplant. She hasn't walked for almost 3 months since the leukemia attacked her nervous system. She is getting stronger daily but just not walking yet. She needs a miracle. She says she does not feel sick. But we know she needs her bone marrow to work now and she needs to walk. Miracle, Miracle, Miracle. That is what is needed. She has 3 daughters, 1 20 year old granddaughter, 1 seven year old granddaughter and one 4 year old granddaughter that pray for her continuously!" -Rose;
5) Luz asks to be remembered in our prayers. She writes: "Please pray for my son, daughter, and ex husband that they may seek God and get right with him.";
6) "I left a prayer request on here a couple of days ago about my husband and I. We did get back together for 3 days then he left me again. Please pray for our marriage,I still want it to work out. I love him alot. He cheated on me and we got involved in certain drugs and things which I know I have to take a certain part of reponsibility for. Please pray that God will open his eyes to the error of his ways. Please pray that God will change his heart in the right direction. I pray that God will heal our marriage." -Melissa;
7) Donna asks for our prayers. She writes, "Please pray for my granddaughter Loghan --. She was in an accident Sept. 27. She is in a coma. Please pray for her and for her mother who is with her in the hospital. Thank you so much. May God bless you." - Donna;
8) "Please pray that I am free of any and all cancer. I had surgery last year and radiation and since then other test that have come back fine. I just started feeling a slight ache and of course I am scared that it could be something bad again. I go to the oncologist this Friday for a follow up and will talk to him about this new thing. I do know that they found a piece of tissue from a CT scan they did in May..it was nothing and maybe it is causing this slight pain..Please pray that the fear I have will go away. I know the devil can make me think bad things and I want to be able to trust God and let go of this fear. Thank you for praying for me." -Louise
9) Debbie asks for our prayers. She writes, "Please pray the lord will keep my grandchildren safe and send them back home soon. A judge gave my son temp. custody 5 yrs ago, since then it has expired, but my son continued on like the judge had set things up. Things have been fine unitl the middle of July. She took the children for their visit and will not bring them home. She is a drug addict, has a criminal record (on probation now - felony), has had SS called on her numerous times over her oldest son (not ours) he is in therapy now for situations she has put this child in. She also is in therapy. She breaks the law and gets a slap on the wrist every time. She knows she can do whatever she wants and the law will not do nothing. This has been proved many times with her. She has taken them before and left the state. But the law does nothing. My son has filed for custody he is not working right now so I had to sell something my dead husband gave me to pay for a lawyer, but it is worth it and I know my husband would agree. We have to go to the boys school to see them They ask can we bring them home with us and we have to tell them soon. My son is having panic attacks caused by stress. He has never been sick like this before. Please pray the lord will bring our boys home soon. For their sake and my sons. I know he's here and I know the devil can't defeat him. Thank you all and God bless you all."
10) "Please pray for our Grandaughter, Rachael, who has had a serious seizure condition since she was five months old. She now is 10 years old and has been on medication all this time. Her Doctors feel the time has come to try taking her off as ahe has been seizure free almost three years. Please pray that the condition has left her and she can be seizure free and live a normal life with out the medication. Thanks." -Carol;
12) "Please pray for my mother Susan L who is in the Hospital with heart problems. Please pray for a successful recovery." -Susan;
13) E & Family asks to be remembered in our prayers. They write: "Pray for blessings and miracles in every area of our life. Pray for all family members and our dog Jakzon to have a long, wealthy and healthy life. Pray for financial miracles and miracle healings. Pray for my husband will not be laid off from his job or he may find a good job. Please, Heavenly Father, spare my husband´s job--Pray for hubby he is caughing strange and I am suffering different health issues. Pray that I may receive a permanent social security disability. Pray for weight loss, ulcer,extreme anxiety, insomia, pain and major depression.. Pray for my children Marie & Phillip to have a bright future. Pray for Marie & Phillip to meet a good christian soulmate.- Pray for a soundful sleep and have a great day for tomorrow. Pray for E and M for extreme weightloss and lift upp both of us in depression. -Please pray that God will answer our dreams and prayers. Bless us financial help and healing miracles to Remove fears and worries. Pray for Blessings and miracles in every erea of our life.Thank you for all of your prayers. God bless you all!";
14) "Please pray that my husband passes his phone interview in the morning and ends up getting the job if God's will. Thank you so much. In His Love, Lori";
15) Please keep the following requests in your daily prayers:
•Pray that the doors of Iran will soon open to Christian missionaries.
•Ask God to raise up prayer teams who will begin breaking up the spiritual soil of Iran through worship and intercession.
•Ask God to give the small number of Jamshidi believers opportunities to share the Gospel with their friends and families.
•Ask God to raise up linguists to translate the Bible and other Christian materials into the Jamshidi language.
•Take authority over the spiritual principalities and powers that are keeping the Jamshidi bound.
•Pray that God will provide greater freedom to live and work among the people of Iran.
•Pray that God will reveal Himself to these precious people through dreams and visions.
•Ask the Lord to bring forth a triumphant Jamshidi church for the glory of His name!;
16) "Please pray for a Woman Named Janie, and her family. Her 19 year old son commited suicide yesterday." -Janie;
17) Pray for Nate and Katie to return to church and prayer.;
18) "Thank you God, and thank you Prayer Warriors, for the healing I see between me and my daughters. Give me the strength, patience, courage, and boundless love I need, Lord, to continue to help them, and I ask you all to keep us in your prayersthat we may once again, some day, be the beautiful family of women we once were. Help them every day to understand a little more about why I have left their father, and why it was the best thing I knew to do for all of us. Help them see I mean him no harm, but am seeking only what is right and just, so that we may continue as a family, as well as they may continue with him, and that we may all be well, and whole, and have peace each in our own lives. In the name of all that is Good, in the name of Light, in the name of Love, in the name of Christ I ask these things. Thank you and Amen." -NN;
19) Cher asks for our prayers. She writes, "My 30 yr. old son, Phillip, NEEDS A JOB NOW! It has been 2 yrs. since he has been working. He was self employed so he has received no unemployment or health benefits. He is not homeless because I supplement him, he is my son and he is a good son. He does not ask for anything because he is ashamed. I know he must eat and have a roof over his head. He does NOT have drug/alcohol issues and prior to his being unemployed, he was ALWAYS self-sufficient, independent and did quite well, that is, until he lost EVERYTHING. He lives in Fla. and I live in Md. He is a college graduate and I am a school teacher. He has gone on so many job interviews, only to not get hired. Last week he went on a job interview, which landed a 3rd interview. I am praying and believing that the Lord has this job for him. I really do not know how much more a man can take in this economy when he tries. This is why I am reaching out to you to pray for my son, Phillip. It is the WORD of God that He will NOT deny us any good thing. Certainly, being able to support oneself is a good thing. He will know this week if he has the job that he has just interviewed for. Please pray with me for my son, Phillip, to get GOOD work. Thank you and bless each of you.";
20) "Please pray for my grandson that he only has a cold and not that swine flu thank you and God bless you." -Mary;
21) Lucita asks to remebered in our prayers. She writes, "Please pray for my husband, my family, and my finances - that the lord open the heavens for my blessings and giving thanks for his protection.";
22) "Hey Mark, Pray for me I broke my shoulder Saturday and have been off work Mon and Tues. I will return on Wednesday with my wife helping me to deliver packages. Pray for a speedy recovery. Thanks and God Bless, David"; and lastly ...
23) Lighthouse Prayer Line encourages you to pray for believers in the Philippines who face persecution because of their faith. Pray especially for the family and congregation of Pastor Vicera, who have lost a father and pastor. Ask God to heal Pastor Vicera's wife, Beth, and Pastor Saturnino who were injured in the attack. Pray the testimonies of these faithful believers will draw their persecutors into fellowship with Christ.
**God bless you for caring enough to pray!!!**
A real friend is always and under all circumstances a friend (Proverbs 17:17a).
Man knows that God exists.
"Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of Him from The Creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His Eternal Power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened" (Romans 1:19-21).
Father Murphy walked into a pub and said to the first man he met, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
The man replied, "I do Father."
The priest said, "Then stand over there against the wall."
Then the priest asked a second man, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
"Certainly, Father," was the man's reply.
The priest said, "Then stand over there against the wall."
Then Father Murphy walked up to O'Toole and said, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
O'Toole said, "No, I don't Father."
The priest said, "I don't believe this. You mean to tell me that when you die you don't want to go to heaven?"
O'Toole said, "Oh, when I die, yes. I thought you were getting a group together to go right now."
Speakers for your next Conference / Revival:
Election or Free Choice? (Part 1 of 2)
Prepared by Mark Seay
The word "elect" appears 10 times in the New Testament:
1. Matthew 24:22
If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for
the sake of the elect those days will be shortened.
2. Matthew 24:24
For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great
signs and miracles to deceive even the elect—if that were possible.
3. Matthew 24:31
And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will
gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to
4. Mark 13:20
If the Lord had not cut short those days, no one would survive. But
for the sake of the elect, whom he has chosen, he has shortened them.
5. Mark 13:22
For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and
miracles to deceive the elect—if that were possible.
6. Mark 13:27
And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds,
from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens.
7. Romans 11:7
What then? What Israel sought so earnestly it did not obtain, but the
elect did. The others were hardened,
8. 2 Timothy 2:10
Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too
may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
9. Titus 1:1
Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ for the faith of
God's elect and the knowledge of the truth that leads to godliness—
10. 1 Peter 1:1
Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God's elect, strangers in the
world, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and
The phrase "God's chosen" or similar appears 19 times.
1. Matthew 22:14
"For many are invited, but few are chosen."
2. Luke 18:7
And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out
to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?
3. John 6:70
Then Jesus replied, "Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!"
4. John 13:18
"I am not referring to all of you; I know those I have chosen. But
this is to fulfill the scripture: 'He who shares my bread has lifted
up his heel against me.'
5. John 15:19
If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is,
you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the
world. That is why the world hates you.
6. Acts 1:2
until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions
through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen.
7. Acts 10:41
He was not seen by all the people, but by witnesses whom God had already chosen—by us who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.
8. Acts 22:14
"Then he said: 'The God of our fathers has chosen you to know his will
and to see the Righteous One and to hear words from his mouth.
9. Romans 8:33
Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies.
10. Romans 11:5
So too, at the present time there is a remnant chosen by grace.
11. Ephesians 1:11
In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,
12. Colossians 1:27
To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
13. Colossians 3:12
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe
yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and
14. 1 Thessalonians 1:4
For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you,
15. James 2:5
Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him?
16. 1 Peter 1:2
who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.
17. 1 Peter 2:4
As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him—
18. 1 Peter 2:9
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a
people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who
called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
19. Revelation 17:14
They will make war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will overcome them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings—and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers."
Based on these verses, will anybody dispute the fact, therefore, that
God chose, or elected, who would be his people, i.e. who would be
saved? The question then is how did God choose? One thing is certain,
no one can tell God what to do. Therefore he must have chosen by his
own counsel. Does anyone disagree with this?
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Hebrews 12:5 ...My son, do not regard lightly the
discipline of the Lord, nor faint when reproved by Him;
(11) Now no discipline at the present time seems to
be a matter of joy, but of grief; but afterward it yields
the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have
been exercised by it.
Every step of the Spirit's discipline is God's work in
us. Had we not become sick that one time, what would
have become of us? Had we not failed that one time,
what would have become of us? What we faced may
have been a problem, but through facing that problem
we may have avoided greater problems. On that day
we will see why the Lord allowed all these things to
happen to us. On that day we will bow our heads
and say, "Lord, I was a fool, because I did not praise
You that day. I was a fool, because I did not give
thanks to You that day." When our eyes are opened
and we become clear on that day, how very shameful
we will be when we recall our murmurings.
We have to learn to believe and to praise. If we do, we
will say on that day, "Lord! I thank You for Your grace
which saved me from unnecessary complaints and
murmurings..." We have a desire to praise the Lord
because He is good. We need to always say, "The Lord
is good." Today we have to learn to believe that the Lord
is good and that He is never wrong, even though we
cannot always understand what He is doing. If we
believe, we will praise. Our praises are His glory.
To praise is to glorify God. God is worthy of all glory.
May God gain abundant praises from His children.
Election or Free Choice? (Part 2 of 2)
Prepared by Mark Seay
In my previous post, I showed numerous verses that clearly stated that God chose who would be his people. While I am sure some will disagree, I believe that this is undeniable.
So, if God has chosen who will be saved, by his own counsel, were
there any factors that he took into account when making the decision,
say for example, did he know those who, if given a chance, would
choose him, or did he see something desirable, a flicker of goodness,
in those that he chose?
To answer these questions we must look at the nature of man since the Fall.
The whole Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, asserts this original sin
and decisive ungodliness of will of all fallen men. Gen. vi. 3: " My
spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh
(carnally minded)." Again, chap. vi. 5: "God saw that every
imagination of the man's heart was only evil continually." After the
terrors of the flood, God's verdict on the survivors was still the
same. Chap. viii. 21: "I will not again curse the ground any more for
man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his
Job, probably the earliest sacred writer, asks, "Who can bring a clean
thing out of an unclean? not one." (Chap. xiv. 4.) David says:
'"Behold I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive
me." (Ps. li. 5.) Prophet asks (Jer. xiii 23), "Can the Ethiopian
change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good
that are accustomed to do evil." Jeremiah says, chap. xvii. 9: "The
heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked." What
does desperately mean? In the New Testament Christ says (John iii, 4
and 5), "That which is born of the flesh is flesh;" and "Except ye be
born again ye cannot see the kingdom of God." The Pharisees' hearts
(decent moral men) are like unto whited sepulchers, which appear
beautifully outwardly, but within are full of dead men's bones and all
uncleanness. Does Christ exaggerate, and slander decent people?
Peter tells us (Acts viii. 23) that the spurious believer is "in the
gall of bitterness and the bond of iniquity." Paul (Romans viii.7):
"The carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the
law of God, '"neither indeed can be," (inability of will).(Ephesians
ii.): " All men are by nature children of wrath . . . . and dead in
trespasses and sins."
Taken from The Five Points of Calvinism by R. L. Dabney
'Out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness' (Mark 7: 21-22). 'The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no not one' (Psalm 14: 2, 3).
The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned' (I Cor. 2: 14).
Taken from From the tract, Another Gospel, by Rev. William MacLean
Of course there are many more verses that talk about the reality of
the nature of sinful man. Man is dead in his sins and transgressions.
Alone we would never choose God. So what possible good, even the
smallest flicker of light, can God see in fallen man to cause him to
say "That one will be mine"? Can anybody show me a single verse that
states that God chose man because of anything that is in a man?
And tell me, if God did choose who he would save based on something
good within them, or because he knew given the chance they would
choose him whereas others wouldn't, is this not something a person
could boast about?
"God chose me because he could see that I had some good within me, whereas he saw that you had nothing good in you at all!"
"God chose me because he knew I was clever enough to choose him, but you were too stupid and didn't choose God!"
But we know that "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us
to do." Ephesians 2:8-10
No, we are God's workmanship, created by him, chosen by him, moulded by him. Only God can turn a heart of stone into a heart of flesh. Only God can raise the dead and that is what we were - dead. We are alive again only through his grace. Therefore how can we do other than worship him? Praise be to our Lord and Saviour!
"Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares
about you" (1 Peter 5:7 – NLT).
Be sure to send in your prayer request for the next
You are in my thoughts and prayers! May the Lord
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"He said, 'If you listen carefully to the voice of the
LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes,
if you pay attention to his commands and keep all
his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the
diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the
LORD, who heals you' " (Exodus 15:26 - NIV).
My God Is King
By Jill Carattini
A story written in antiquity that continues to exceed
contemporary standards of what is considered "good
storytelling" is more than a little interesting. The book
of Ruth has drawn accolades from many voices for many
years. Goethe held that it was "the loveliest complete work
on a small scale" while another pronounced, "No poet in
the world has written a more beautiful story."(1) The book
is simple and honest, the lives it gives account of both
ordinary and compelling.
But the story is not an island anymore than are the lives
of people it describes. By means of a beautifully told story,
we are shown both the weaving of redemption throughout
history and the God who redeems.
Ruth was a young woman from Moab whose husband died
in the midst of a great famine. Returning to her family would
have been appropriate; the young widow would have been
cared for and could have married again among her own
people. But she chose to stay with Naomi, her also-widowed
mother-in-law, who was not a Moabite. Shortly after the story
begins, we hear Ruth declaring resolutely to Naomi: "Where
you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people
will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will
die, and there I will be buried" (1:16-17a).
At this point in the story, we don't know much about Naomi's
God or her people, or why Ruth would be so determined to
adopt them, other than as a sign of loyalty to her mother-in-law.
The story briefly mentions Naomi's God, though it seems to
arrive as secondhand information, and not from the widow
herself. (The text reports that she heard that the LORD had
come to the aid of his people and food was to be found in
Judah.) Interestingly, the first time Naomi speaks directly
of her God within earshot of Ruth, it is to say that God has
made her cold and grieving. Naomi imparts that her name
should no longer be Naomi, which means "my delight," but
Mara, which means "bitter": "For I went out full, but the LORD
brought me back empty" (1:21).
I have heard both sides of the argument about admitting anger
at God. Some say, "God knows you are angry and God can
handle it." Others insist, "Saying you are angry at God is in
effect saying you don't believe God is acting as your redeemer."
But I have experienced God's grace in both places.
With angry words I have pounded my fists on God's chest
and God in his mercy convicted me with his redeeming
presence. I have also tried taking thoughts of bitterness
captive, answering cynicism with truths of Scripture
and discovering God's grace and comfort. (I have also
just been angry and altogether refused to see God.)
Naomi's words were at once both honest and blind. Her grief
is unfathomable to me, and the very meaning of her name
seems a cruel irony. But she was also not seeing everything
clearly; in fact, she had not returned entirely empty. God had l
ed Naomi back to Judah with the gift of a loyal daughter-in-law
who had pledged to discover the God of Israel, perhaps
even as Naomi rediscovered this God again herself.
And she did. Naomi and Ruth came to see the work of God's
redemption among them, as Job did even in the midst of his
grief: "For I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end
he will stand upon the earth" (Job 19:25). The book of Ruth
ends with a child who offers the promise of redeeming the
name of Naomi's deceased husband. In Hebrew culture,
Ruth's child, Obed, was seen as the one who would carry on
the line of Naomi's husband. And in fact, his name, which lived
on because of loyalty and in spite of blinding despair, can be
followed all the way to the lineage of King David and the line
of Jesus Christ. His name was Elimelek, which stirringly
proclaims the meaning of the entire book: "My God is King."
(Jill Carattini is senior associate writer at Ravi Zacharias
International Ministries in Atlanta, Georgia./(1)As quoted by
Tremper Longman in The Introduction to the Old Testament.)
We hope you have found today's newsletter encouraging to your
walk with Jesus Christ. Please send all prayer requests and
praise reports to us by using the "comments" hyperlink, which
can be found at the end of each blog/article. God is Good!!!
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