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The BLESSED LIFE

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The Best Life is the Blessed Life

Sermon Notes – James River Church – 12-29-2013 – Pastor John Lindell

Psalm 112 – Praise the Lord ! How joyful are those who fear the Lord and delight in obeying his commands. Their children will be successful everywhere; an entire generation of godly people will be blessed. They themselves will be wealthy, and their good deeds will last forever. Light shines in the darkness for the godly. They are generous, compassionate, and righteous. Good comes to those who lend money generously and conduct their business fairly. Such people will not be overcome by evil. Those who are righteous will be long remembered. They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the Lord to care for them. They are confident and fearless and can face their foes triumphantly. They share freely and give generously to those in need. Their good deeds will…

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COUNT YOUR MANY BLESSINGS-DAYS OF PRAISE
  
“Thou crownest the year with thy goodness; and thy paths drop fatness.” (Psalm 65:11

At year’s end, a Christian should stop to count his blessings. If he does this fairly and fully, no matter what his problems may have been during the year, he will have to confess that God, as always, has crowned the year with goodness.

The coronation figure is frequently used in Scripture to speak of God’s blessings in the Christian life. For example: “Bless the LORD. . . Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies” (Psalm 103:2, 4). Even our testings and trials are always in the context of God’s grace and love. Christ Himself wore a crown of thorns so that we may be crowned with mercy and salvation.

Consider also Psalm 5:12: “For thou, Lord, wilt bless the righteous; with favor wilt thou compass him as with a shield.” The word “compass” is the same Hebrew word as “crown,” with the basic meaning “encircle.” Other jewels in the believer’s year-end crown are God’s grace and glory. “[Wisdom] shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee” (Proverbs 4:9).

Then there is the wonderful testimony that “thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honor” (Psalm 8:5). Finally, the believer’s crown is none other than the Lord Himself: “In that day shall the Lord of hosts be for a crown of glory, and for a diadem of beauty, unto the residue of his people” (Isaiah 28:5).

Most Christians have an abundance of material blessings for which to thank the Lord. Even if they have none of these, however, God has crowned the year with goodness and favor, with lovingkindness and tender mercies, with grace and glory and honor and, best of all, with His own presence. “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits” (Psalm 103:2). HMM
December 31, 2018
Count Your Many Blessings
https://www.icr.org/article/11026

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ARE YOU LUKEWARM?

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AMIR TSARFATI-

September 30, 2018

Behold Israel

God created peace and man rebelled and violated this peace, thus war has entered our history. Man ever since has been trying to achieve peace. But can he do it apart from God? What can the Bible tell us about the future? Will it be with peace or war? Amir identifies peace and war in a cycle of 4. Which will be the one God intended us to have? Amir gave this teaching at the Understanding the Times Conference.

Bible Bite: God Loves To Declare His Plans

The Apostle Paul gave us a wonderful reminder in the book of Romans that needs to be recognized today…

Romans 15:4

For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.

If we were to paraphrase Paul’s statement we could well say; the Old Testament (the things written before) was written for our learning, patience, comfort and hope. Yet sadly, many in the church today minimize or marginalize the Old Testament to some sort of secondary status even though it’s content is just as inspired as every word of the New Testament.

Today, some say only read the red letters, pointing to the Words of Jesus printed in red in many Bibles. There are two major problems with such thinking. The first is there were no red letters in the Greek manuscripts. The second is such statements deny the inspiration of the rest of the Bible and are an insult to the third member of the Triune Godhead, the Holy Spirit, who inspired all that is written in the Scriptures, including the New Testament.

Genesis 18:17-18

And the Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?”

It is the Lord’s desire to make His plans known to His people. Through the ages He has continually revealed what His will is for the present and what awaits us in the future. For some He revealed the near future, like with Abram and Sarai having a child. For others, and in some instances for all, He has revealed the distant future like with Daniel when he was told of things that would happen “many days from now.”

The point is this;

2 Peter 1:2-4

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

In his opening greeting and remarks in his second epistle, Peter gives God’s will for us in the present, being partakers of the divine nature and by that living in godliness. Then he tells us of our future through the exceedingly great and precious promises of escaping the corruption that is in this lustful world. He prefaces these two things by stating that God’s divine power has given us “all things” that pertain to life and godliness.

That means we don’t need to try and create sensational things that aren’t found in Scripture in order to live or have a more fulfilling or exciting Christian life. God has given us all we need in order to live godly and He has told us all we need to know in order to live in anticipation of escaping this lustful world.

Daniel 12:4

“But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”

There are things in Scripture that will only be fully understood by the generation that sees them unfold. The Bible often refers to them as “mysteries”. That doesn’t mean that we will need a bible code to decipher them, it simply means the mysterious will become obvious in its time. For example, the church is referred to as a “mystery” in Ephesians 5:32 and it was hidden, or a mystery, in the Old Testament. But now God’s love and desire to save the Gentiles is no longer a mystery through the reality of the predominantly Gentile church. Babylon is called “mystery Babylon” in Revelation 17:5 and the fullness of the meaning is hidden from us and will only be completely understood when the events concerning mystery Babylon occur or are fulfilled.

Deuteronomy 29:29

“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.”

With all the wonderful “secret things” God has revealed to His people through His word we need to recognize that there are still things that are known only to Him, such as the day and hour of Christ’s return. Yet the fact remains that through His divine power and the revelation of His word we have been given all the things we need to live a godly life in expectancy of His return. We are, however, fortunate to live in the time Daniel wrote of that was sealed to previous generations as we live in the “time of the end.” Therefore we don’t need to force anything in to any given text to make it more sensational nor do we need to search for secret or coded meanings of various prophetic passages.

Let the Bible speak for itself and let Scripture interpret Scripture recognizing the most reliable means of prophetic interpretation is fulfillment. Some things we don’t know and others we can and do know and the things we can and do know are sensational enough without forcing anything on to them for the sake of creating excitement or selling books.

Here is something sensational we know for sure yet “when” it happens remains a mystery and that is; Jesus is coming soon! And until He does, His divine power has given all things pertaining to life and godliness as we live in expectancy of His sensational return. Maranatha!

September 30, 2018

Our mailing address is:
Behold Israel
P.O. Box 689
Monument, CO 80132

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HE IS RISEN! HE IS RISEN INDEED!

Matthew 28:5-6
The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.

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HE’S ALIVE!

 REVELATION 1:1-18
The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto Him, to show unto His servants things which must shortly come to pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John:  who bare record of the Word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.  Blessed is he that reads, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein:  for the time is at hand.
       John to the seven churches which are in Asia:  Grace be unto you, and peace, from Him Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before His throne; and from Jesus Christ, Who is The Faithful Witness, and The First Begotten of the Dead, and The Prince of the kings of the earth.  Unto Him Who loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever.  Amen.
       Behold, He comes with clouds; and every eye shall see Him, and they also who pierced Him:  and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him.  Even so, Amen.
       I AM Alpha and Omega, The Beginning and The Ending, says the Lord, Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come, the Almighty.
       I, John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the Word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.  I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, saying, I AM Alpha and Omega, The First and The Last:  and, What you see, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.  

       And I turned to see the voice that spoke with me.  And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; and in the midst of the seven candlesticks One like unto The Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.  His head and His hair were white like wool, as white as snow; and His eyes were as a flame of fire; and His feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and His voice as the sound of many waters.  And He had in His right hand seven stars:  and out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword:  and His countenance was as the sun shines in its strength.  And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead.  And He laid His right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I AM The First and The Last:  I AM He that lives, and was dead; and, behold, I AM alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

 
JESUS CAME AS A MAN TO DIE FOR THE SINS OF MAN!
BUT DEATH COULD NOT HOLD HIM; HE IS RISEN!
THE SUFFERING SERVANT IS BECOME BOTH SAVIOR AND LORD!
QUESTION:  ARE YOU LONGING TO BE WITH HIM,
OR DO YOU DREAD THE THOUGHT OF FACING HIM? 
HOW YOU ANSWER WILL EITHER CONFIRM YOUR FAITH,
OR IT WILL REVEAL YOUR NEED TO TRUST IN HIM!
WHAT BETTER DAY THAN TODAY?!

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BUT He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Isaiah 53:5-6 NIV

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  • A passionate prayer
  • A traitorous arrest
  • A trumped up charge
  • A false trial
  • Lying witnesses
  • A denying disciple
  • Washed hands
  • Unrighteous remorse
  • A Place called Skull
  • A remote crossroads of the world
  • Between two thieves
  • Sneering rulers
  • Scoffing bystanders
  • Abusive soldiers
  • Insensitive crucifiers
  • A repentant robber
  • A new mother and her new son
  • Weeping women
  • A worshipping Centurion
  • Three hours of darkness
  • The earth shakes
  • Some living dead
  • A criminal’s cross
  • A sealed stone
  • Salvation!

Salvation? How can the salvation of all mankind happen in this way? In this ignominious, inglorious way? How can this be? That all of the sins of all who have ever lived or are living or will live are paid for on a criminal’s cross? Aren’t criminals most in need of forgiveness? Can criminals even be forgiven? How can a Man who hung on a criminal’s cross pay for all the sin of all people?

And in Jerusalem of all places. Why not Rome, the political capital of the world? Or Athens, the cultural capital of the world? Or Alexandria, the educational capital of the world? Or Ephesus, one of the economic capitals of the world? Or Corinth, certainly one of the sin capitals of the world? Yes, that’s it, why wasn’t sin paid for in one of the greatest sin centers of history?

It just doesn’t make sense. How can this Friday be Good? And how could salvation happen in this way?

No blaring trumpets, no glorious angels, no parades of power and purity, just another Friday crucifixion in the ancient Roman empire. Amazing. Excruciatingly painful, but almost ho-hum for the Roman soldiers. Just one more criminal to throw on the trash heap of history and off we go for a few drinks and a good time of gaming.

Yet salvation did come this way. Yes, it did!

God had worked for thousands of years to provide His salvation. First there was creation, then rebellion, and then rejection, banishment, separation-we were cut off from God and Life. But that’s when God began the redemption process, first with promises, then with prophecies, and all with purpose, the purpose of demonstrating His power through His weakness as He kept His promises and fulfilled His prophecies. His Son became one of us: His Son became His Slave, His sacrifice. our Savior. And in Jerusalem.

God loves weakness because weakness is the greatest way He can show His power. How can an ordinary Man who isn’t even worthy of a second look become our Savior? But He did through the power of God’s weakness in Jerusalem.

How can Jerusalem become the place of salvation? Jerusalem was a world capital in the ancient Roman Empire. One of the greatest structures of all, Herod’s Temple, was in Jerusalem. The city was a spiritual capital in the empire, but Jerusalem was different from the other world capitals. It was . . . well, it was Jewish, quirkish, lavish in its own way, but certainly not in the Roman way. Jerusalem was really a weak world capital, crushed under the Roman heel. But God had made Jerusalem the center of His salvation purposes, the place where all His promises would be fulfilled, an unlikely place populated by some very unlikely people. How like God to do this.

This is my salvation, my deliverance, my eternal life started on earth and slated to last forever. Again, I must ask how can this be? How can a five-year old fatherless and familyless little boy get father, mother, and family in the blink of an eye? How can that little boy receive a call to serve God? How can that little boy grow up to be blessed with mentors and marriage and sons and daughters-in-law and grandchildren, and faithful friends full of love for him? How can that be? Only because God glories in taking the weak and making us His vessels of glory.

It has been many years since God saved me and I still serve Him. Salvation never ends; why should service? And may I die as Jesus died: with a cross on my back, resurrection in my heart, and the interests of God on my mind.

What has your salvation been? Can you join with me in this Good Friday season and rejoice in God’s salvation for you? Think of what He has done for you and join me.

MORE ARTICLES FOR PASSION WEEK-

Passion Week – Good Friday Events 1/2 – The hurt of Peter’s denial of Christ
…Then the high priest had an inspiration. He would charge Jesus under oath to answer this question: “Are you the Christ, the Son of God?” (Matthew 26:63). This was a question Jesus was not legally obliged to answer. And yet Jesus chose to answer. I used to think that this was because the high priest put Him under oath. I now look at it differently. This was a question Jesus must answer. To refuse to answer would imply that He was not the Messiah, the Son of God. If He were the Messiah, the Son of God, then why would He not answer to this effect? This was the crux of the coming of our Lord – to reveal Himself as the Messiah, and as the Son of God.

Our Lord’s answer was far from tentative. Not only did He identify Himself as the Messiah, the Son of God, He also referred to Himself as the Son of Man:

Jesus said to him, “You have said it yourself. But I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power and coming on the clouds of heaven” (Matthew 26:67).

This is an incredibly powerful statement. Jesus affirms His identity. He is the Messiah. He is the Son of God. He is also the Son of Man, which means that He will return to the earth in power, to deal with His enemies and to establish justice…..

Passion Week – Good Friday Events 2/2 – Jesus arrested and crucified – It is finished!
After rebuking His disciples for attempting to defend Him by force, Jesus then turned to those who had come to arrest Him. Why were they seeking to take Him by force? What was the need for this great “posse” (to use a term from the old Western movies – a large party of folks authorized to assist in the arrest of Jesus)? Why did they have to arrest Him at night? Jesus had not been in hiding, as if He were a wanted felon. He had publicly taught in the temple. He was never more accessible for arrest than during the previous week. If the disciples’ (threatened) use of force revealed some wrong thinking, so did the show of force by those who came to arrest Jesus in the garden.
 Let us leave these verses by taking note that Peter surely was willing to die for His Lord, just as he had claimed earlier. No one would start swinging his sword against an armed force this large without expecting to die (or at least expecting our Lord to intervene with some “heavenly firepower”). Our Lord was indicating to Peter and the rest that if He needed heaven’s intervention, He could do so without His disciples precipitating violence.
 
Passion Week – Good Friday Events 2/2 – Jesus arrested and crucified – It is finished!
~~https://rodiagnusdei.wordpress.com/2015/04/03/passion-week-good-friday-events-22-jesus-arrested-and-crucified-it-is-finished/

Rebloged from:

https://rodiagnusdei.wordpress.com/2018/03/30/a-meditation-for-good-friday/

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