Ephesians 4:1-6

As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called— 5one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

With Eyes Set Only upon Jesus

Set your eyes on none other than Jesus Christ, the high priest of your confession, for He alone is the author and the finisher of your faith.  Many eyes are upon men, but no man can save you or transform you.  There is one new man of which all the saints are a part.  It operates out of the Spirit and anointing of Christ.  It moves in accordance as the head directs it and energizes it with His power and life. 

“It is not man that you are to be mindful of says the Lord, it is Me.  Set your eyes upon Me for I will not disappoint you.” 

Man will always disappoint.   Follow after the example of Christ you see in others, but know that they are subject to the same weaknesses and frailties as you. 

Jesus says there is only One good,  God the Father.   Our goodness is only in the measure that the Father expresses His righteousness through us by faith.  Christ in you, that is your righteousness.  The spirit of a man may be willing, but his flesh is sometimes weak.  In all your ways, set your eyes upon Jesus.  He is your Savior and Messiah. 

Many are hurt and wounded in the body of Christ, because they have lifted up the man of God, rather than the Christ in him.  When the man falls down, often the faith of the those looking to him falls with him.  We do want to respect and hold in honor those who are spiritual leaders.  While they may guide us and teach us, they can not save us.  Never transfer upon them what only Christ can do for you.  Our faith should never be moved by what happens to man.  They walk by the same grace that holds you and I.  Pray for them that they would not fall, for they are often under great attack and pressure.  It is not our criticisms that will stay them, it is our prayers and intercessions for them.  They bear the same infirmities and weaknesses as we do, but the burden of responsibility is so much greater upon them. 

We are a body that under-girds one another, upholds one another, ministers and serves one another.  What we give to leadership in prayer and support is every bit as important as what they can impart back spiritually.  A true leader is not a lord, they are a servant.  Their burden and responsibility are the ones they serve.  Likewise the ones they serve have the responsibility to encourage, support and pray for them that serve in this office.  None of us are above another, but some do carry greater responsibility.  We all have the responsibility to help them to stand, not alone, but with the strength of our gifts (spiritually and monetarily) and our prayers. 

Call no man Father, for you have but one Father, but know that there are those that father you in the faith and help you to grow in the likeness of Him.  Respect and honor them, but do not set your faith and trust in them, but in the Christ they have led you to know and believe in. 

This is no longer a day of big names and men of renown.  It is a day when the kingdom is at work in the body of Christ teaching each of us to function in our gifts and callings.  Each of us needs one another, for together, with Christ who  is our head, we make up the whole new man in Christ Jesus.  

Beloved, love one another, care for one another and pray for one another.  Honor and pray for those that labor over you.  Ephesians 4:11-13 tells us, ” It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.”  It is time for the body to grow up into the fullness of what God has called us to be in Christ.  Ephesians 4:4 reminds us, “There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called— 5one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. 

Let us all flow in the unity of that one Lord who has loved us and gave Himself for us.  Ephesians 4:25-32 goes on to exhort us in our behavior toward one another. ” Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26“In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27and do not give the devil a foothold. 28He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.

29Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” 

We are one another’s keepers.  Lift each one up in the faith, in love and prayer He has called us too.  In Him we are one man and one body.

blessings,

#kent

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The Antidote for Fear

May 30, 2017

 

1 John 4:18

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

The Antidote for Fear

We live and walk in a world consumed by doubt and fears.  Unfortunately it touches many who are believers as well as the world.  It is important that if fear and doubt are a struggle that you have that you will be encouraged and exhorted by this word. 

The only one that God wants us to fear is Him.  When we truly reverence and stand in total awe of who He is then we realize He ultimately has the say and judgement over our life and spirit.   Others may be able to afflict and kill the body, but God determines our eternal destiny.  

When I find myself in fear and doubt, I find that I am not standing and walking fully in faith.  Faith in God’s Word assures me that God is Love.  His love is able to keep me, not matter what circumstances surround me or those I love.  In Romans 8:28 I am given the assurance that, “all things work together for the good of those that love the Lord and are called according to His purpose.”  Even when I am faced with tribulation, persecution, afflictions and death, I need not fear.

Why?

Because God’s perfect love drives out all fear.  In Psalms 118:6, the Psalmist declares, “The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?”  We have the assurance that as we have received by faith, Christ as our Savior and Lord, He lives in us and we live in Him.  He is Lord of Lords and King of Kings.  All else, spirit or flesh, is under His dominion.  If we are in Him then anything that touches us must come through Him.  

Our fears come when we lose sight of the identity that we have in Jesus Christ.  When we fully grasp and lay hold of the promises and truth of God’s Word, fear has no grip upon us.  

Why?

Because we are God’s children who abide in the Love of God.  His perfect love casts out fear.  Our lives are His.  Is there any so great as to pluck us out of the hand of God?  

“But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.”  If we fear judgement and punishment then we lack the assurance that we have been fully washed and cleansed in the blood of Jesus.  We don’t fully understand that we are fully justified in Christ, meaning it is just as if we never sinned.  When we abide in the Righteous One, then we abide in the full assurance of His salvation.  In that salvation is the revelation of God’s holy and insurmountable love for us.  For us to live in fear, means that we have taken our eyes off of who He is in us and put them upon the circumstances that surround us. 

When Stephen was about to be stoned by the frenzied mob of the religious, he didn’t fear what they could do to him.  He only saw Jesus and had set his eyes on things above.  When we, like him, see Jesus setting a the right hand of the Father, then there is no room for fear because Ephesians 2:6-10 assures us, “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

When we know who we are, where our position is and what our purpose is then what can man do to us.  Our life is hid in Him and He is sovereign over all of the affairs of men.  When we get a revelation of this we will better understand the perfect love of God and that God has designed that we should be made perfect in that love.  “Perfect love drives out fear.”

Blessings,

#lemt

A Psalm and a Prayer

May 26, 2017

A Psalm and a Prayer

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable unto You, oh God.

Psalms 19:14

You, oh Lord, are the wonder of our hearts, the richness and the meaning of life.

You uphold us by Your right hand.  You are our confidence, protector and defender.

You lead us in the paths of righteousness for Your namesake and you have imputed upon us the greatness of Your very name.  

We are as the dumb sheep who are often so prone to stray and act foolishly.  Yet, You are so full of grace to pardon our iniquities and correct us as Your children.  You watch over us with Your Shepherd heart and impart Your Spirit to counsel and lead us.  

Your lovingkindness is not only new every morning, it is as a sweet fragrance that lingers throughout the day and anoints us with Your favor.  Your ways are awesome, mighty and past finding out.  Your ways are so much higher than our ways and your thoughts higher than our thoughts.  Grant us the Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding in the knowledge of You, that we may comprehend Your ways, oh Lord.  Give unto us a heart that is bent upon obedience and walking in the paths of righteousness.  

You have brought us out of the realm of death and into the realm of Life.  Teach us to walk by the Spirit in the Law of liberty and life in Christ Jesus.  Teach us how to appropriate that life and power to live a life of victory and overcoming in this present mortal body.  Teach us to live out of the dimension of Your divine nature that you have so richly made us partakers of.  

Worthy in the heavens is your majestic glory!  Worthy is Your name of the praise of all creatures, both small and great.  Worthy upon Your throne are You oh great God of justice and love.  May You be enthroned upon our hearts each day that we have breath.  May we be Your faithful children that would honor You both in life and in death; for you have made us heirs together with Christ, Your only Begotten.  You are becoming unto us the fullness of salvation.   You are redeeming us spirit, soul and body as You are transforming us into your likeness from glory to glory.  

Help us; oh Lord, as You consider our frame.  May Your grace remain rich toward us to help us in our weakness and frailties.  Yet empower us with faith to see that in our weakness we are made strong as we become more reliant and trusting for Your divine strength and life to become manifest in us.  Raise us up as Kings and Priests to offer unto You spiritual sacrifices offered from hearts of thanksgiving, contriteness and humility.  Let our boast be in You alone and help us that we never think more highly of ourselves than we ought, for our life is hid in You.  Our reason for living, being and having life is to express You, praise You and glorify Your name in the earth.  Establish our ways mighty Father.  Secure our feet that they would not slip from the high way of holiness and the paths of righteousness.  Place your salve upon our eyes that they may see through the eyes of spiritual understanding and comprehend Your intent.  Place Your hands upon our ears and anoint them to hear clearly and distinctly Your Holy Spirit.  Most of all make our hearts so tender and passionate toward you that we would grieve to do anything to offend or disobey You.  Write your laws upon the tablets of our hearts and make us an open book of Your gospel, read and known of all men.  

Oh great and mighty Lord of compassion and love, restore in us a right spirit, a burning passion and fervent faith.  Raise us up for this hour in time and history to be the instruments of Your glory and expression.  Grant that we would have hearts that would remain steadfast toward You in a world where so many things are screaming for our attention and would distract us from our purpose and calling in You.  Humbly, we put our faith and trust in You.  We are able to do all things through Christ, which strengthens us.  Help us that we may press on and prevail in a world filled with sin and darkness.  May we be Your lights, Your ministers of grace and Your flaming fire that would spread the gospel throughout the earth to every nation, tribe and tongue.  

You are Everything, oh Father, to Your people.  Bring forth Your Bride, Your Church and Your redeemed.  Let us be without spot or wrinkle before You.  Wash us and establish us in the blood of Jesus and allow the word of our testimony to overcome the evil one.  

Amen

Blessings,

#kent

Christ in You

May 25, 2017

Matthew 25: 35-40

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37″Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40″The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’

Christ in You

You are a ray of sunshine.

You are the extension of God’s divine.

You bring healing in the midst of pain.

You are heaven on an earthly plane.

When you walk into a room it brightens up.

When you spend time with me you fill my cup.

You are my companion when I feel alone.

The voice of love is in your tone.

You are the servant that gives your all.

You pick those up who stumble and fall.

You encourage those who have lost their worth.

You share the life that brings new birth.

I see His face when you smile.

I see His walk when you go the second mile.

I see His love in your unselfish ways.

Yes, you are His expression day by day.

Kent Stuck 

Blessings,

#kent

Psalms 91

1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

2 I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;

6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

7 A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.

8 Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.

9 Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;

10 There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

16 With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.

God wants to Reign in You

God has raised you up and it is He that will sustain you.  Even when you walk through the valley of the shadow of death He walks there with you and His presence overshadows you.   Many are the perils of the righteous, but the Lord sustains them through them all.  The place of rest is the place of total release and letting go into the arms of the Father.  It is so hard for us to stop clinging to human dependence and reason.  Everything in the natural screams if I let go of control I’ll fall to my death.  How can Father bear you up on eagles wings if you never jump with the wings of faith and trust.  Father is training His sons and daughters to soar in the heavenly places, but they can never know that freedom as long as they confine themselves to the nest.  Father is stirring up the nest.  He is making it rough and uncomfortable.  Where it was once a place of comfort and safety it is now a prickly and hard place.  One we can no longer rest in.  That is to cause us to launch out of our nest of self-dependence and world economy. 

Yes. we may flounder as we flap our inexperienced wings of faith, but even as we fall Father is there to bear us up and bring us again to that place of safety.  He is teaching us launch out.  He is coaxing us out of the nest that we might fly with Him in the heavenly places.  Fear is our greatest detriment to faith.  Once fear is overcome faith will abound.  We must learn to stop operating out of the nature of what we had been and start operating in the nature of who we now are in Christ Jesus.  Old habits die hard, but it is a day for a new paradigm in how we live life.  God gave us His life by investing the talent of His Son within us.  How will we invest and use what He has given us?  Will we bury it in the ground and go on with life as usual or will we invest it in faith in the lives of others till we see it increase and multiply?  Christ didn’t put the responsibility of saving souls upon our shoulders, but He did say, “If I be lifted up I will draw all men unto Myself.”  If we will be faithful to lift Him up the Holy Spirit will draw the souls to Himself.  Faith requires us to step into what we can not naturally see.  It requires us to believe what does not naturally exist.  It is making God’s Word the substance of those things we hope for and the evidence of what we do not see. 

It is by faith that we will go and will do as the Father leads us and as we hear the Good Shepherd’s voice.  In Him alone is our safety and our provision.  All that the world offers is so soon fading away.  Your only true place of rest is under the wings of the Almighty.  That rest can only be entered into by faith and obedience.  That is where we will find His highest and that is where we will find our peace.  Proverbs 18:10 says, ” The name of the LORD [is] a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.”  Today, we as the people of the Most High God, stand, live, move and have our being out of Him and unto Him.  We are become the expression of His life and even as He breathed into unto us His image, we are exhaling in His very nature and life.  Now, unto the God who sits on the throne be glory and honor, power, majesty and dominion forever and ever.  Our God reigns and He will reign through His holy priesthood and His holy nation.  Rise up people of God and shout to the glory of God for He reigns in our hearts and His salvation is unto everlasting. 

Blessings,

#kent

Setting your Mind

May 23, 2017

Setting your Mind

Colossians 3:2

Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.

Once there was a little girl who at young age was taken to piano concert at Carnegie Hall where she listened and watched in awe as the master pianist brought the keys alive and made music like she had never heard before.  As she went home the music continued to play in her head and as she closed her eyes she could visualize it all over again.  That day marked a turning point in the direction and the purpose for which that little girl lived.  The next day she announced to her parents that she had decided to be a concert pianist.  Her parents listened with a patient, encouraging and yet skeptical ear.  A lot of kids are impressed with something for a while, but then they grow bored or tired of it and move on to the next thing that impresses them.  This was not the case with this little girl.  She convinced her parents to get her a used piano and give her music lessons.  It became apparent early on that she was passionate in her pursuit and committed to her practice.  Day after day they would see her, without being told or prodded, spend her spare time practicing.  Even when she was not at the piano she was going through the notes in her mind, thinking upon how to better perfect a piece. That day at the concert she had made a commitment and promise to herself that she would one-day play in Carnegie Hall and in other great places around the world.  She held fast to that promise and commitment.  Through much diligence, hard work and practice she began to excel in her music ability and proficiency.  As she grew older she never wavered from her dream.  Along the way she experienced some hurts and setbacks, but it was the disappointments that drove her the harder to be the better.  Finally came the day when her dream was realized and she began to be invited to play at greater and greater venues as her fame and reputation grew.  Then one day, she realized her greatest dream of all when she was invited to play at Carnegie Hall.  No doubt her tenacity, desire and faith inspired other children that they also could strive and position their lives for greatness.

When we read through the Bible and as we commit our lives to Christ may we be inspired as we behold the hand of the Master and His handiwork, as we read the words of Jesus and behold His life.  He is our inspiration and our call to commit all that we are unto Him and begin to practice His presence.  Our goal in Christ will never be obtained through looking at our inability, our sin or our failure.  We set our eyes upon Jesus and commit our hearts to Him knowing that as He has come to live in us, He is also able to live through us in greater and greater ways, as we are able to give over who we were, into what He is.  Like the little girl, everyday means practice.  Every day we learn to walk closer to Jesus and more in tune with the Holy Spirit as we practice being in His presence and living out of His life.  He is the foremost on our minds; He is the motivation and the inspiration behind all that we do.  To be like Him, to be conformed to His image and nature, to give our all for Him as He gave His all for us, that is our dream and that is why we set our affections upon things above and not on things of earth.

Blessings,

#kent

Foundation for Faith

May 22, 2017

Foundation for Faith

Psalms 18:2

The LORD [is] my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, [and] my high tower. 

We find in life that often we are a self-filling prophecy.  We become and are shaped in the image of whom we think and believe that we are.  Maybe we started out in our lives doubtful, fearful, with a lack of confidence and very little faith in ourselves that we could do much of anything or be anything.  As long as we hold on to that mindset and it is coming through in our outward demeanor, do you think we will see much success in our lives?  If we don’t believe in ourselves, then how could we expect others to believe in us?  What if, on the other hand, we dare to believe all that God says about us and dare to believe all that He said He would be for us?  Now we have a foundation for success.  As we believe and then act upon that premise by faith and those beliefs, will our life change?  

King David was a man who is a prime example of one who spoke, sang and wrote what God was to His life.  Even in the deepest valleys of his life he dared not trust his soul, but rather He spoke out of His spirit and ministered to His soul the truths and the realities of God’s Word.  He was constantly meditating, and reminding Himself of the goodness of God, His faithfulness, His power, His salvation and all of the attributes and benefits of God and His nature.  This is what makes the Psalms so powerful.  They are Spirit anointed sonnets and songs of who God is and why life is worth the living because He is in it.  David would recite the Word of God and encourage His soul.  His faith would then lay hold of the truth that He spoke and begin to act upon it.  

Many of us see ourselves as weak, untalented, insignificant people.  That may be you and I outside of Christ, but what can we be in Christ?  Are there any limitations to what God can do in and through us, except in our own mind and thinking?   The foundation of faith is wrapping our mind and heart around God’s Word, assimilating it into our hearts and speaking into our doubtful and fearful souls.  It is so often good just to pray the Psalms, reading and speaking them to God as if they were your own.  It will inspire faith in your heart and courage to your soul as it did for David.  

Who is the Lord and what is that to me?  When we answer that question we find the foundation for our faith.  Upon that foundation we can build a successful life, for our confidence is in Him who is able to do abundantly more than we can even ask or think.  

What is the foundation of your life today?   Is it the Rock or is it the sand?

Blessings,

#kent

Spiritual Position

May 19, 2017

Ephesians 4:2-7

But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.

Spiritual Position

I asked the Lord a while back about how do we begin to operate out of the third heaven or that kingdom realm rather that the  second heaven of flesh and spirit?  In that realm we have only seen and experienced in part and my heart is to see ‘God’s kingdom come and His will be done in this earth as it is in heaven.’ I realize that the reality of that truth begins in us, His people.  That truth first has to take place in  us, because we are His body and the vehicle through which He manifests His kingdom in the earth.  So as I asked about this operating out of the third heaven and I felt like God gave me three keys that would bring us into our authority.  It is not just in the knowledge of these three keys that this brought about, but it is in the revelation and the experience of these that this takes place.  These three keys were in the revelation of your identity in Christ, your position and your purpose.   When we get the revelation of ourselves and what Christ has brought us into then we will begin to step into our authority. 

If you read the past articles written you will observe that a predominant topic of conversation deals with the identity of who you are in Christ.  We can do nothing truly effective if we don’t really know who we are or we are just focused on what we used to be.  When we see Jesus, we see the image we have been created in and the character and nature that we are to possess.  Jesus came bringing the kingdom of God into the earth.  He was the firstfruits, the predecessor, the template and the pattern for what His many-membered body is to become.  “Christ in you, the hope of glory”, that is the mystery of who you are becoming.  1 John 4:17 says, “In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him.”  In Galatians 2:20 Paul says, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”  Through these many other scripture we a revelation of our true identity in Christ. 

It is this next part that I wish to address today, “Our Position”.  Our scripture here in Ephesians 2:6 describes our position in Christ.  “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.”  While we may occupy the earth with our natural bodies we get insight here that our spirit man is positioned with Christ in heavenly places because we are in Him and that is where He is seated, so we can also operate out of this position and seat of authority.  Colossians 3:1-2 goes on to tells that if we understand our position in Christ then this how we should operate out of that position, “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.”  Your position in Christ is a spiritual position and you must operate out of that position from you spiritual man.  That means our focus has to be on kingdom or  “things above” and you can only be and operate out of this position if you know who you are “in Christ.”  Paul goes on to make it more practical in verses 5-11.  “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all. 

Jesus makes this comment to the Pharisees in Luke 17:20-21, “Once, having been asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, 21nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is within you.” In this “position” it is all about Christ, because that is who we operate out of by faith in Him and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit.   What that ultimately means to us is the eradication and putting away from ourselves any identity that is not of HIM.

One sister shared an astute observation,  When you are on the earth looking at the giants in your life they look so big and unconquerable, but when you see your position, “in Christ”  seated at the right-hand of God the Father  looking down on your giants, they are as grasshoppers.  What is our perspective?  For us to move into these places we have to be willing to lose our old stinking thinking that we might put on the mind and the perspective of Christ.  He finished the work and He set down at the right hand of the Father until His enemies be made His footstool.  What makes up the feet of Jesus if it isn’t His body.  We are simply the fulfillment what He has already done, but how are we going to accomplish that if we don’t know our identity, our position and our purpose? 

Blessings,

#kent

1 John 4:13-17

We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. 16And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 17In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him.

Living Example of Love

We know that God is love and we know that God so loved the world that He gave us His only begotten Son, so what is our response and responsibility?  John is a disciple who has a revelation of the love of God.  No other writer expresses the love and relationship with God the way that John does.  I think that we hear of the love of God with our ears, but do we experience it in the depths of our soul?  What is John saying here?

God is love.  His love expression is Jesus Christ.  We know that we now live in this love because we live in Christ and He lives in us through His Spirit.  What does this say about the atmosphere and the aura that surrounds our life and permeates our being?  In Christ we are saturated in the love of God.  If then we are saturated in this love shouldn’t this love define our life, our purpose and the expression of our being?  The judgement of God is not our fear, because the purpose of our being is to express the love of God to a lost world to rescue them from judgement. 

A fellow related a story to me this week about a time when his car broke down and stopped in traffic.  He said he set some safety cones out and was trying to get his car running again when a car came up behind him and began to honk profusely.   He thought. “I have designated that I am having a problem why doesn’t he just go around?”  He said he finally went back to see what this guy’s problem was and it happened to be the associate pastor at the church he attended.  He said when the man recognized him as a person from the church; he ducked his head and quickly pulled around and drove on.  He said he has never mentioned it since.  Now we could judge this associate pastor for his actions, but probably most of us, with a little thought, can think of times in which we acted no better.  We, like the scribes, Pharisees and religious ones have crossed to the other side of the road and turned our head to ignore an unpleasant or inconvenient situation we haven’t wanted to get involved in.   In fact, at times we have become down right irritated and angered at the inconvenience that others impose upon us. 

The question becomes who is our neighbor and what is our responsibility to love them?  Remember now, we are the ones who are saturated with the love of God.  I hope you see my point, because it is very convicting to me when I look back and see my actions and responses in the light of the love of God that should be prevailing in me.  If self-interest is still my predominate motivator then have I really gotten a revelation of the love of God that is resident in me?  It is one thing to know who I am, but then I have to become the expression and the substance of whose I am and that should be LOVE.  Love possesses me, He owns me, He fills and He lives in me.  If there is one thing that should be noticeable and stand out about our life it should be His love.   If we know and rely upon the love God has for us, how much more the world, without realizing it, is depending upon God’s love through us to reveal to them salvation and hope, “because in this world we are like Him.” 

Are we like Him?  Are we His expression of love?  In this world we must be the living examples of God’s love.

Blessings,

#kent

Old Things Obstruct the New

Hebrews 9:6-8

Now when these things were thus ordained, the priests went always into the first tabernacle, accomplishing the service [of God]. But into the second [went] the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and [for] the errors of the people: The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing:

As I was looking around my yard and home today I was noticing areas where we have made improvements, remodeled and changed our existing structure and yard.  I also noticed how much of the remnants of those old things still remained and cluttered my house and yard.  Either I hadn’t gotten around to getting them hauled off or I thought they might come in handy someday, so for whatever reason they remain cluttering up our lives and home, keeping us from fully enjoying the fullness of the improvements that we have made.  It occurred to me that our spiritual lives are a lot like that.  While we don’t remove the foundation of our homes we do update and make improvements to our existing structure.  The same is true of our spiritual lives.  We are continually growing in our revelation and understanding of God, of who we are in Him and who He is in us.  Why aren’t some these revelations having a more profound effect in our relationship with God?

The Lord showed me some time back that He gave the tabernacle of Moses, the priesthood and that spiritual service as a type and shadow of the true spiritual tabernacle and service that is revealed in Christ and His Church.  This is clearly seen and discussed in the book of Hebrews.  What the Holy Spirit brought to my attention is the little phrase contained the scripture above, “the Holy Spirit thus signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing (Hebrews 9:8).”  Now we know through the Word that when Christ died upon the cross, the veil in the temple was literally torn supernaturally from top to bottom, the Lord spiritually signifying to us that we all now have access into the Holy of Holies, His very presence.  Hebrews 10:19-20 verifies this by saying, “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus.   By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh.”  Why is it that now that we have access to the Father we are not experiencing the measure of His fullness and presence we so desire?  Much of it may have to do with the excess baggage we are still carrying with us from our former belief system that was steeped in law and the traditions of men.  It may be that our first tabernacles are still standing or least remnants of them.  We have our own religions, denominations, agendas and our own way of doing things.  So much of it is not placed there by the Spirit of God, but by man, much of it by his own prejudices and opinions.  While, in many cases it contains elements of truth, is it the truth of the revelation that God has for us in this hour.  Just as the tabernacle of Moses and priestly service was truth in the day of Moses, in God’s reality it was only pointing the way to a deeper truth and reality of God’s true spiritual tabernacle contained in Christ and His Church.  2 Corinthians 3:18 says, “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord.”  The Lord is conforming and transforming us to His image from glory to glory, from understanding to understanding, from revelation to revelation.  We are continually maturing and should be growing up into Him in all things.  The question is, as we are growing in our understanding and revelation are we still clinging to the old?  Do we still maintain our former belief system, our former mentality, our former thinking and level of faith?  Is there a lot of clutter in our spiritual house that is hindering us from experiencing a deeper and more meaningful relationship with God’s presence?   The only way we can enter into the Holiest of all is in full assurance of faith and the blood of Jesus.  What other things in our lives and in our beliefs are we using to try and gain this access.  The Lord Jesus has done it all, but we may not be experiencing it all because as long as the former temple is still standing the Holiest of all is still not going to be made manifest to us.  The truth is, most of us need to clean house and get rid of a whole lot of junk that is doing nothing but hindering us from moving into a richer and more meaningful experience with God.  This is where we need to begin to seek the Holy Spirit’s help in identifying and getting rid of old ways of thinking and believing that are not inline with His present day revelation and truth.  2 Corinthians 5:17 says,  “Therefore if any man [be] in Christ, [he is] a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”  As the old things have passed away we must get rid of even the remnants of them from our lives that we may come, unencumbered into the fullness of the new, into His Holy presence, with boldness, fullness of faith and with the blood of Jesus.

Blessings,

#kent

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