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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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“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

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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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