The Honor of His Name

March 10, 2016

 

Jeremiah 14:7

Although our sins testify against us, O Lord, do something for the sake of your name.

For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against you.

The Honor of His Name

Jeremiah writes this scripture at a time of great judgement befalling Israel because of their backsliding and rebellion.  Jeremiah, in his day, was like the proverbial square peg in a round hole.  He didn’t fit  because he was the representative of God’s name and God’s name had lost all honor in the land.  Jeremiah remarks in Chapter 15:16-17, ” When your words came, I ate them;

they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God Almighty.  17I never sat in the company of revelers, never made merry with them; I sat alone because your hand was on me and you had filled me with indignation.”  Bearing the Lord’s name can be a lonely and unpopular place even when you are surrounded by those who profess His name, but their hearts are far from Him.  

God’s name is HOLY.  He has called us, His people by His name; with that blessing and  privilege we are called to holiness to bear is name in honor and righteousness.  Needless to say, God is jealous over His name and His reputation.  How many people in the world misunderstand God’s true nature and character, because we, who are called to be the people of God, have misrepresented Him?  How many today reject Christ, because of what they see in the lives of the people who call themselves Christians?  

God is saying that His judgement begins at His house.  Like Jeremiah, the word of God’s judgement is not one we would desire to speak, but out of His commission we must speak.  God is going to bring judgement to His house to restore honor back to His name.  He has entrusted us with His name, but many of us have not held it in holy regard and reverence.  We have not feared His name as we ought to fear it.  Hebrews 10:26 says, “Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins.”  If Jesus is coming for a bride without spot or wrinkle then know that she has to be cleansed.  

The trumpet has been sounding for some time now for us to turn our hearts wholly to the Lord in the light of what is coming in the earth.  It is a time when your faith will come with a price and like Jeremiah you may well become a reproach to the congregation around you as you sanctify your heart and life unto Christ.  Christ will no longer be about our religious verbiage, but about the epistle that He has penned in our hearts and that is read of all men.  The reality of who we are will be revealed and not just who we have professed to be.  

Father is reminding me of the scripture in Matthew 10:32-40 that says, ““Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven. 33But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven.

34“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35For I have come to turn

“‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—36a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’ 

37“Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

40“He who receives you receives me, and he who receives me receives the one who sent me. 41Anyone who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and anyone who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man will receive a righteous man’s reward. 42And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is my disciple, I tell you the truth, he will certainly not lose his reward.””  

There is a winnowing about to take place in the house of God where the wheat and the chaff will be thrashed and separated.  While our soul ties run deep, our spiritual ties with Father must run even deeper.  Stand in the truth and the vindication of the Name of the Lord, for honor must be restored to His Name!

Blessings,

#kent

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John 16: 5-14

“Now I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ 6Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief. 7But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. 8When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: 9in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; 10in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; 11and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

12“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 13But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. 14He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. 15All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.

Holy Spirit, Help Us Know You

How we thank God for His precious Holy Spirit the lives in us, walks with us, reveals the Father to us and leads us into all truth.  It is my continual cry and prayer to hear Him more accurately, distinctly and more often.  Without Him I can not have the Spirit of truth, of love and of His power.  Holy Spirit is God’s channel through us to do what Jesus said He would do, “he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: 9in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; 10in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; 11and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.” 

It is not because we preach condemnation and judgement upon people.  The mistake so many of us make in our self-righteousness is that we think we are the Holy Spirit and it is our responsibility to do the Holy Spirit’s work.  The Holy Spirit is a big boy and He can do His work far better than we ever could.  When the nature of Christ’s love is upon because of the Holy Spirit working through us then as we live like Him and are obedient to the Holy Spirit’s prompting then the Holy Spirit can move in the circumstances to bring that conviction, judgement and righteousness upon others.  The cross of Christ stands as the condemnation of the prince of this world.  We are not here to stand in condemnation upon those who are still under his influence we are here to rescue the perishing and give life to the dying.  When we are living out of the life and love of Christ the Holy Spirit is fully able to do His work through us.  One of the hardest things for us to learn is to wait upon Him and not go rushing ahead in our fleshly enthusiasm to usurp what the Holy Spirit wants to do by acting and doing outside His direction.  If His sheep hear His voice and will not follow the voice of a stranger then we want to learn and discern our own thoughts from those of His, because our own thoughts are that “stranger” if they are separate from His.  

We all know how impetuous children can be, thinking they know how to do something, just because they have heard it or seen it done.  That is how many of us are in the Spirit.  We are sometimes too anxious to be spiritual that we actually miss the Holy Spirit in what we are attempting to do. The Holy Spirit will train us and lead us as we practice daily being in communion and fellowship with Him.  He will gently deal with the issues that all of us are still dealing with as we learn to do two things, trust and obey.  What He is leading us into is unfamiliar to the natural man, so it is important that our spirit remains open to Him to guide us in His ways.  We often do fail, but the love and blood of Jesus covers us with grace.  If our hearts are right then we can trust that Holy Spirit is working in us the will and do of His good pleasure.  

Blessings,

#kent

God’s Plans

February 9, 2016

 

God’s Plans

Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

What is God’s plan for your life and are you fulfilling it? It doesn’t matter if we are twelve or ninety-two, God created us for a purpose, have we found it?  Like Jeremiah, the Lord has good plans for your life, but if we never find it, if we never grow and develop in it, we miss His perfect and best for us.  Our success story in life is not about our wealth, our natural accomplishments or talents.  If all of that is accomplished outside of God’s plan then all we have gained is worthless chaff.  God has us all in different and unique places. He has furnished each of us with different and unique talents and abilities.  The truth is, we have the basic raw materials to fulfill the plan of God for our lives.  The one thing we may really lack is God’s direction and a heart that wants first and foremost to fulfill God’s destiny and purpose for ourselves and not our own.  Self-made men are often godless men, who have become gods unto themselves.  Our God is a God of destiny, plan and order.  Each of us is not random genetic materials living out lives with no reason, hope or purpose.  God doesn’t make junk, that’s what happens when we pursue a direction outside of His purpose.  

Isaiah 32:5-8 speaks this concerning men, “5 No longer will the fool be called noble 

nor the scoundrel be highly respected. 6 For the fool speaks folly, his mind is busy with evil: He practices ungodliness and spreads error concerning the LORD; the hungry he leaves empty and from the thirsty he withholds water. 7 The scoundrel’s methods are wicked, he makes up evil schemes to destroy the poor with lies, even when the plea of the needy is just. 8 But the noble man makes noble plans, and by noble deeds he stands.”  Here we see the two types of men, the fool and the wise, the man of self and the noble man of God.  What is deceiving is that often the godless are given by the world the cloak of nobility, but noble isn’t in their character, it is only a mask of appearance.  The fool even uses the appearance of godliness to self-gain and to carry out his wicked devices, but the noble man of God is established on godly principles “and by his noble deeds he stands.”  

Where are our lives in the scheme and plan of God’s order and purpose?  Proverbs 29:18 tells us, “Where [there is] no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy [is] he.”  God has given us His Word, His prophets, His Christ, His apostles and those who minister His Word all to give us vision.  If we fail to see, it is because we have refused to look into the perfect law of liberty whereby God has called out of darkness.  Ephesians 2:1-6 reminds us, “1At one time you were dead because of your sins. 2You followed the sinful ways of the world and obeyed the leader of the power of darkness. He is the devil who is now working in the people who do not obey God. 3At one time all of us lived to please our old selves. We gave in to what our bodies and minds wanted. We were sinful from birth like all other people and would suffer from the anger of God. 4But God had so much loving-kindness. He loved us with such a great love. 5Even when we were dead because of our sins, He made us alive by what Christ did for us. You have been saved from the punishment of sin by His loving-favor. 6God raised us up from death when He raised up Christ Jesus. He has given us a place with Christ in the heavens.” God has a plan for you and I that will only be realized as we walk in His will and purpose for us, seeking and desiring His perfect personal direction and will for our lives.  Our lives are often meaningful and purposeful in ways we don’t even recognize, like the kind words of encouragement you speak to someone, the random acts of kindness and the deliberate acts of mercy.  When we live and move and have our being in Him, we are living out His will and purpose in our lives.  

We often quote a scripture in 1Peter 2:9-12 because the trails we travel keeps leading us back to our destiny.  “But ye [are] a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: Which in time past [were] not a people, but [are] now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. Dearly beloved, I beseech [you] as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by [your] good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.”  We are destined for greatness in Him, let us not choose to live anything less than His perfect will and plan for our lives. 

Blessings,

#kent

The Perpetual Love of God

January 20, 2016

 

John 3:16

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

The Perpetual Love of God

John 3:16 is like the ABC’s of Christianity.  It may have been the first verse that we ever memorized.   It is like the powerful foundational scripture of our faith and yet many might deem it simplistic and elementary.  It is elementary all right.  It is the elementary foundation that all else is built upon.  It is God’ love that created us.  It is God’s love that has kept Him from destroying us.  It is God’s love that calls us back to Him when we have been his enemies in sin and rebellion and it is God’s love that was so great that He was even willing to give for us His only begotten Son.  

God doesn’t teach His love by word only, but by the demonstration of giving us His most prized possession, His Son.  Who of us would sacrifice our children willingly for any man?  Yet, this sounds the depths to which God loves His humanity.  

Jesus came to do the work of the Father, to destroy the works of the devil and to finish the work on the cross that would open the door of reconciliation for all of mankind to come back to the Father.  All He asked us to do was to respond to His ultimate gift of love.  That is what Jesus is to the believer, God’s greatest gift to all who will simply believe and receive.  

What we may not see is that through God’s only begotten Son, He has called many sons to glory through Him.  What Jesus completed upon the cross as the incarnate, God expression, of God giving Himself for us, He is now bringing to completion and perfection through Christ the many-membered body with Jesus as it’s head.  What Jesus did as the forerunner, the first-fruits, the template and pattern son, He is now bringing forth through His body after the same example in a company of sons.  

In Hebrews 10:12-14 the Word says, ” But when this priest (Jesus) had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. 13Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, 14because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.”  Now you put your feet, not your head on the footstool.  If we are the body of Christ then those feet of His body can represent, the lowest, the last and the members that carry us into the completion of our victory and full overcoming in Christ.  When we get a revelation that Jesus has put His feet up then we can come into the rest of knowing that our enemies are under our feet as well, because we are all one in Him.  

God’s love is perpetual, not just in His Son Jesus, but in and through His many-membered Son Christ Jesus that envelops all of the household of God.  We are the continued expression, being and doing of Jesus in the earth.  His love is perpetuated through us as we are in Christ, living, moving and having our being.  God gave His only begotten Son, not only to love us through Him, but He so loved the world through the ages that He continues to perpetuate His love to the world through the expression and life of His Son in us.  

Remember that as you go forth today.  You are the expression of Jesus to this world because He abides in you and you abide in Him.  Perpetuate God’s love to a lost and dying world, because that is His heart, and His heart is in you.

Blessings,

#kent

The Golden Rule

December 17, 2015

Matthew 7:12

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

The Golden Rule

One of the most detrimental, selfish and skewed ways for us to live as human beings is to only see life from our point of view and only how it benefits us.  A young toddler or child is normally this way.  That is all that they know.  They know what they want and they do whatever works to get it.  Maturity and correction should teach them that life is not all about “me”.  Unfortunately for many of us as adults we still hold on to this mentality.  

There is an old saying that you need to walk a mile in someone else’s moccasins to understand where they are coming from.  I believe that goes hand in hand with what the Lord is teaching us here.  We may not be able to fully experience what somebody else is experiencing, but that doesn’t mean we don’t need to have empathy and sympathy in an effort to understand and imagine if we were in their situation.  When we are willing to weigh the needs, concerns and care we have for others in the same way that we do for ourselves, then we are beginning to move in a direction of loving our neighbor as ourselves.  When we are actively asking ourselves as we deal with others in business and personally, how would I want this person or business to treat me in this situation?  Am I being fair and reasonable or am I only focused on getting my way?  Human relationships can be complex and difficult at times.  We certainly can’t control how another treats us, but we can make the decision of how we respond or choose to treat another.  The Lord is teaching us throughout the New Testament to be proactive in our choices of how we respond and treat others.  

In Matthew 5:38-48 Jesus teaches, ““You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’  39But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. 43″You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44But I tell you: Love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.  What Jesus is telling us to do here goes against the grain of our natural reasoning and response, but He is telling us to have a love that exceeds that of the world.  There are many good people in the world doing good things, but if we just love those who love us then what is that more than the rest of the world is doing?  Christ’s love is that of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8Love never fails…”

The golden rule is such a powerful principle that if we all lived by it we would all have one another’s interest at heart and not just our own.  While we are blessing someone else, some else is blessing us.  We are watching one another’s backs and having the same care and concern for others as we have for ourselves.  It is a simple principle, but one we soon forget, neglect or fail to practice.  It is hard for us to excel and get ahead using this principle, but then that should tell us something about that mentality in the light of God’s purpose and plan for us.  God tells us to seek first the kingdom of God and all these things shall be added unto you.  Like we have said before, the greatest principle we can learn from life is that true fulfilling life is not found in the getting, but in the giving.  Let us remember and practice this simple principle, because upon it hangs the sum of the Law and the Prophets. 

Blessings,

#kent

Words of Wisdom

December 10, 2015

Psalms 49:3

My mouth will speak words of wisdom; the utterance from my heart will give understanding.

Words of Wisdom

What is the substance of the words that you speak?   Our words reveal our hearts through the courses of light and dark.  Our words can give life, understanding and edification or they can bring death, discouragement and misery.  The Word says, that ‘out of the abundance of the heart that mouth speaks’.  What are we filling our hearts with today?  Is it with the Word and the life of God or with the death and discouragement of our world?  God’s Word tells us in Colossians 3:2, “Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.”  God is putting in our mouths the words of His wisdom, but in order to have wisdom and to speak wisdom you must dwell where wisdom dwells.  Your dwelling place must be “in Christ”.  He is not for our visitation; He is for our habitation.  For so long we have only been visiting where we need to be living.  

Listen for a moment to the apostle Paul’s purpose and where He operated from. Our purpose is the same.  In Colossians 2:3-4 Paul speaks, “My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 3in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. 5For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how orderly you are and how firm your faith in Christ is.”  All of the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden in Christ.  I can’t tell you how exciting it is each day I go digging in God’s treasure house to see what treasures of wisdom and knowledge He will share with me and through me.  Each one of us has this right, privilege and mandate to do this, but you can’t enjoy the treasures of His wisdom and knowledge unless you go there and dwell there.  

The things of this earth truly must grow dim in the light of His glory and grace, for we are ordained and commissioned to be His mouthpiece, but what we speak must contain the words of life and the wisdom of God.  Ephesians 4:17-24 exhorts us to put off our old way of thinking and doing things, because we are being taught in the wisdom of God’s Word to be the wisdom of God in Christ Jesus.  It says, “So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more. 

20You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. 21Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”  

Worldly living depletes us and makes us insensitive to the ways of understanding and godly wisdom.  On the other hand walking and living with the Most Wise God begins to bring our thinking and understanding into the light and truth of His wisdom.  What we become, we perpetuate and birth in others.  Let our mouths speak the words of wisdom, so that the utterance from our hearts, which is rooted and grounded in Christ, will give understanding and life.

Blessings,

#kent

Trails We Leave Behind

November 30, 2015

Philippians 2:3-5

[Let] nothing [be done] through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

Trails We Leave Behind

Do you remember the time in your life when maybe you became environmentally conscious?  You became aware that what you did impacted the environment around you.  You learned it was not a good thing to throw trash out of your car.  You learned that when you went hiking and camping, it wasn’t a good thing to leave your trash and garbage all over the countryside.  You became aware that how you treated the environment directly impacted how others could enjoy it as well as you.  Most of us have probably been disgusted when we have hiked to a beautiful spot for a picnic only to find that the previous picnickers had left bear cans, trash, or torn up the landscape, because they only thought about themselves and their enjoyment at the time.  They selfishly had no regard for those that would follow them.  This same principle holds true in the human landscape of our lives on a moral and spiritual plane.  Our wrong attitudes, selfishness, and lack of regard for others impacts the lives of those around us.  It follows then that golden rule of “Do unto others as you would have them to do unto you”  should be applied to every aspect of our life.

If our goal, as we go through life, is endeavoring to treat all men equally with dignity and respect then we won’t leave behind us the hurt and wounded lives of those we have slandered, criticized, judged and condemned.  We will regard others as Christ has regarded us, with love, compassion and mercy.  Jesus had the intellect, wisdom, power and position that He could have just tore people up as he saw their heart and attitudes.  He could have justly judged and condemned all of those around Him, but He says in John 3:17, “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”  Jesus is all about saving people.  He is about restoration, healing, comforting the broken hearted, caring about the orphan and the widow.  He is all about those things that produce spiritual life and blessing in others.  That is what we are to be about as well.  Life isn’t just about us and what always best suits our needs.  It is about others and how we might live to benefit them.  Sometimes I get upset because my expectations and wants aren’t met, but that is the selfish part of me that is not thinking in terms of what is best meeting the needs in someone else.  Often the needs of others constitute a sacrifice and an inconvenience on our part.  That is all part of how we live to create a clean and healthy environment with those around us.  Even the servant reaps the benefits of his service.  

Let us esteem others as better than ourselves and be mindful of not what just suits our needs, but what will bless and minister to others as well.   Make sure what you leave behind you is as good or better than what you found it. 

Happy Trails!

 
 
Blessings,
#kent

Judgement in the House

October 28, 2015

Jeremiah 14:7-10
Although our sins testify against us, O LORD, do something for the sake of your name. For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against you. 8 O Hope of Israel, its Savior in times of distress, why are you like a stranger in the land, like a traveler who stays only a night? 9 Why are you like a man taken by surprise,
like a warrior powerless to save? You are among us, O LORD, and we bear your name; do not forsake us!
10 This is what the LORD says about this people: “They greatly love to wander; they do not restrain their feet. So the LORD does not accept them; he will now remember their wickedness and punish them for their sins.”

Judgement in the House

Why does the Lord not hear us when we call? Why does His ears seem deaf when we cry out in our distress? How many times has the Holy Spirit tried to speak into our hearts, but we ignored Him, tuned Him out and went about our own ways?
God is so longsuffering with us, patient and kind. He often does not reward us according to what we deserve. There comes a time when He will be ignored no longer, nor will He forever tolerate our sinful ways and rebellious hearts. Finally the judgement of God is come and justice is served. We are now bewildered by why God won’t hear our prayers, deliver us and meet our needs.
Whether we comprehend it or not, all of God’s ways are just and true. Even in the severity and judgement of the All Mighty it is tempered in His love. When we fail to correct our course, we get so far off of course that God has to make a severe course adjustment. For many of us that is enduring a significant life-changing event. 1 Corinthians 11:31 exhorts us, “But if we judged ourselves, we would not come under judgment. 32When we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned with the world.” Judgement of God for us is not His condemnation, but His correction, so that we will not be condemned with the wickedness of the world.
Often we are comparing ourselves with the world and we are making judgements upon the lost and those outside the body of Christ, but God wants us to be concerned about judging our own house. We do not live by the standards of the world, but by the standards of God’s Word. That standard should not be a law that robs from us in it’s restraints, but rather brings us into the light of the blessing we have as we walk by the Spirit and not after the flesh. God is not trying to rob us from joy in this life, but is giving us vision and comprehension to lay hold of the love, joy and peace of His kingdom while we still abide upon this earth. God holds us to higher standard because He is our righteousness and we are to be the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. So then judgement begins first with us, discerning and searching our heart for any unclean way. It comes from repentance and a turning away from our sins by His grace and the power of His life in us. Now if unrighteousness and sin is blatantly taking place before us and we are aware of it, we, as the body of Christ, have a responsibility to judge, correct and discipline for it. Otherwise defilement spreads to the rest of the body. 1 Corinthians 5:12 says, “What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked man from among you.”” Judgement is to maintain purity and righteousness within the body. God’s corrections humble us and remind us of whom we are without Him.
King Hezekiah was a righteous king who loved and served the Lord, but he was stricken in feet with boils even unto death. Isaiah, the prophet came to him and told him he was going to die. Isaiah 38:2-3 says, “Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD, 3 “Remember, O LORD, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.
4 Then the word of the LORD came to Isaiah: 5 “Go and tell Hezekiah, ‘This is what the LORD, the God of your father David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will add fifteen years to your life. 6 And I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria. I will defend this city.” “The prayers of a righteous man availeth much.” In an excerpt from the writings of Hezekiah after his illness and recovery he writes, “I cried like a swift or thrush, I moaned like a mourning dove.
My eyes grew weak as I looked to the heavens. I am troubled; O Lord, come to my aid!”
But what can I say? He has spoken to me, and he himself has done this.
I will walk humbly all my years because of this anguish of my soul.
Lord, by such things men live; and my spirit finds life in them too.
You restored me to health and let me live.
Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish.
In your love you kept me from the pit of destruction; you have put all my sins behind your back.”
God became more real and personal in Hezekiah’s affliction and eventual healing than He probably had been in any other time in his life. When we have been disciplined, corrected and restored by the hand of Lord, it works a humility and reverential fear of the Lord we don’t soon forget.
If we experience God’s correction it is a good thing that restores us in righteousness. It is not pleasant, but painful at the time; yet it works the peaceable fruits of righteousness. Much of our pain and estrangement from God can be avoided as we judge, discern and align our hearts in obedience to His will and His Word. It is better to judge ourselves than to be judged.

Blessings,
#kent

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