In the beginning...

Just say Jesus

Month: November 2015 (Page 1 of 2)

11-30-2015 Genesis 9:8-11

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8 Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying: 9 “And as for Me, behold, I establish My covenant with you and with your descendants after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you: the birds, the cattle, and every beast of the earth with you, of all that go out of the ark, every beast of the earth. 11 Thus I establish My covenant with you: Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood; never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.”

Here God establishes a covenant.  Covenant is defined as a contract, agreement, commitment, guarantee, promise, etc.  You get the picture.  This is the beginning of God’s promise to redeem man.   When God makes a promise you can count it.  The same can’t be said for us.  Just look at our daily lives.  Everyday people get married and make a lifelong promise to the other, however 40 to 50 percent of marriages end in divorce.  The divorce rate for subsequent marriages is even higher, and this is our biggest “promise” or “commitment” we ever will make.  Even the ones that stay married still fall short of their promise.  Some are unfaithful, abusive, or just not attentive.  So what does this mean?  I believe it shows us just who we are, and who God is!  The Bible tells us “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:4-6).  God will tell you which way to go and He is the only one that won’t let you down.  For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5).   As far as each of us, we need to be committed to God, so we can be more committed to others.  When we turn our will and our life over to God and allow him to direct our path, we become more like Him.  Then our promises towards others will be more lasting.  We will never be perfect, but we can repent when we fall short.  When we fall we sometimes need help getting back up.  Jesus said: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).   God has promised to be there no matter what, and to lift us back up!  But if you’re tired, confused, lost, or just don’t know what to say or do….just say Jesus!

11-20-2015 Genesis 9:4-7

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But you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. 5 Surely for your lifeblood I will demand a reckoning; from the hand of every beast I will require it, and from the hand of man. From the hand of every man’s brother I will require the life of man. 6 “Whoever sheds man’s blood, By man his blood shall be shed; For in the image of God He made man. 7 And as for you, be fruitful and multiply; Bring forth abundantly in the earth And multiply in it.”

In these four verses the word blood is mentioned four times.  I believe God is trying to make a point here.  In the book of Leviticus  Moses wrote:  “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls” (Leviticus 17:11).  So life is in the blood, however blood must be shed to atone for sins.  There is a penalty to pay for sins and it must be paid for in blood.  The writer of the book of Hebrews writes: “Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins” (Hebrews 9:22).  So if the life is in the blood, and blood has to be shed to be made right from sin, death must occur.  A sacrifice has to be made.  Jesus is and was that sacrifice.  Jesus’ blood was shed so we can have life.  He gave His blood to atone for our sins.  The only thing we have to do is accept it.  Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.  It’s a free gift, yet people reject it.  Why?  Maybe because it sounds to good to be true.  Everything in this world comes with a price.  Even when you think you are getting something for free, there is always something attached to it.  The only thing attached to this free gift is eternal life.  Here is the reality: Everyone is a sinner, your soul is eternal, and there is a price to pay for your sins.  Where your soul resides after your mortal body dies is up to you.  I encourage you today if you haven’t accepted Jesus don’t wait any longer.  But if you don’t know what to say or do…just say Jesus!

11-19-2015 Genesis 9:1-3

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Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. 2 The fear and dread of you will fall on all the beasts of the earth, and on all the birds in the sky, on every creature that moves along the ground, and on all the fish in the sea; they are given into your hands. 3 Everything that lives and moves about will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything.

In the 1st verse God said “Be fruitful”.  At this time there were only 8 people on the earth.  Everyone else had perished in the flood.  So what does it mean to “be fruitful”.  Jesus said “You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.  A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Therefore by their fruits you will know them” (Matthew 7:16-20). Is this not true in our world today? We know who someone is, not by their words, but their actions.  What they do towards others, shows us their character.  How we treat others has a lasting impact.  If you show anger, hate or even indifference it can and will effect the other person in a negative way. It then multiplies itself as that attitude is passed on to the next person.  You know how it is ….you have a bad day at work and now you come home and take it out on everyone else.  However, if you learn to show love, compassion, joy, and hope, this also multiplies itself.  Statistically you will meet approximately 100,000 people in your lifetime.  And they will meet 100,000 people in their lifetime.  That’s 10,000,000,000 people that your life will have somewhat of an affect on! So each and everyone of else has a responsibility to show that love.  What a difference we can make with just showing a kind word, a thankless effort, or just a smile. However, if you’re still confused, not sure, or don’t know what to say or do….just say Jesus!

11-18-2015 Genesis 8:20-22

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20 Then Noah built an altar to the Lord and, taking some of all the clean animals and clean birds, he sacrificed burnt offerings on it. 21 The Lord smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: “Never again will I curse the ground because of humans, even though[a] every inclination of the human heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done.

22 “As long as the earth endures,
seedtime and harvest,
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night
will never cease.”

Here we see Noah gave God thanks.  He knew to give God the credit for bringing him and his family through the destruction of all except for that which was on the ark. God knew Noah’s heart just like He knows ours, and so God had mercy on Noah.  God has mercy on us also, however we are saved by His grace.  Mercy is deliverance from judgement or the fact that God is not punishing us as our sins deserve. Paul the apostle writes: ” For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Grace is extending kindness to the unworthy, or God’s blessing even though we don’t deserve it.  That’s the second part of Paul’s statement.  It’s a gift from God. This gift is free to us because Jesus paid the price.  Someone died in our place so that we could be made righteous.  That’s how much God loves us.  He desires to have a relationship with us. So He went all out and gave His Son.  Can you imagine giving something so precious for everyone else, and they don’t deserve it? That’s who God is! Today I pray for mercy on our country, our world, and the people of this world.  I believe He is doing that now, however if we reject His free give of salvation He has no place for us.  Why would any of us reject a free gift? I’m not sure, but if you’re reading this and aren’t sure, cry out, call out, reach out, do something.  But if you don’t know what to say…just say Jesus!

11-17-2015 Genesis 8:13-19

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13 And it came to pass in the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, that the waters were dried up from the earth; and Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and indeed the surface of the ground was dry. 14 And in the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth was dried. 15 Then God spoke to Noah, saying, 16 “Go out of the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons’ wives with you. 17 Bring out with you every living thing of all flesh that is with you: birds and cattle and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, so that they may abound on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.” 18 So Noah went out, and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him. 19 Every animal, every creeping thing, every bird, and whatever creeps on the earth, according to their families, went out of the ark.

Here again God commands Noah.  He tells him to go out of the ark.  He tells him to bring everything out also. For me I see how God calls all of us to come out, and not only that but bring the stuff with you.  For me, my mess becomes my message. When I can share what Jesus did for me it has power.  John the apostle writes in the book of Revelation: “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” (Revelation 12:11). My testimony shows others the power of Jesus.  Jesus brought me out of a dark place, gave me new life, and put in my heart to share that same love with others. Noah was told to be fruitful and multiply the earth.  When I share the love of Jesus, He multiplies.  It’s a ripple effect. If I want to be loved I must love.  Yesterday I quoted 1 John chapter 4 verse 8; it reads: “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love” When we learn to love others, we can then come to know God.  Today I will try to love everyone I encounter.  Give it a try, but if you don’t know how to do this or what to say….just say Jesus.

 

11-16-2015 Genesis 8:6-12

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6 So it came to pass, at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark which he had made. 7 Then he sent out a raven, which kept going to and fro until the waters had dried up from the earth. 8 He also sent out from himself a dove, to see if the waters had receded from the face of the ground. 9 But the dove found no resting place for the sole of her foot, and she returned into the ark to him, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth. So he put out his hand and took her, and drew her into the ark to himself. 10 And he waited yet another seven days, and again he sent the dove out from the ark. 11 Then the dove came to him in the evening, and behold, a freshly plucked olive leaf was in her mouth; and Noah knew that the waters had receded from the earth. 12 So he waited yet another seven days and sent out the dove, which did not return again to him anymore.

In verse 10 and verse 12 Noah waited or in other words he was patient.  Patience is defined as the ability to accept or tolerate delays, problems or suffering without becoming annoyed or anxious. This is a hard one.  We want what we want, when we want it.  If we can understand that God has a plan for our lives (Jeremiah 29:11), and know that He will never leave us or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:8) we can begin to understand why God needs us to be patient.  In 1Corinthians 13:4 Paul writes ” Love is patient, love is kind”.  All of us need love.  John the apostle wrote: “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4:8).  So if God is love then God is patent, and God has been patient with us.  Today I will try to be patient and show love to everyone I encounter.  However, if your not sure how to do this or just don’t know what to say….just say Jesus!

11-13-2015 Genesis 8:1-5

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Then God remembered Noah, and every living thing, and all the animals that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters subsided. 2 The fountains of the deep and the windows of heaven were also stopped, and the rain from heaven was restrained. 3 And the waters receded continually from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters decreased. 4 Then the ark rested in the seventh month, the seventeenth day of the month, on the mountains of Ararat. 5 And the waters decreased continually until the tenth month. In the tenth month, on the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains were seen.

Just as God remembered Noah, He too will remember us.  To me this is extremely comforting.  Jesus told us “But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered” (Luke 12:7). In Noah’s time there was but one man and his family that walked with God.  That was Noah.  He brought them through the most horrific storm the world has ever seen.  God tells us “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6).  If we follow God He not only remembers us, but He walks right along side of us.  Our world seems to be much like the days of Noah.  I don’t know how much longer the Lord will allow it to last.  There will be a final judgement and this world will be wiped out once again.  Jesus said ” Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away” (Matthew 24:35).  And in that final judgement Jesus will have only two statements for you: “Well done my good and faithful servant (Matthew 25:21), or “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness” (Matthew 21:23).  If we follow Him, He knows us. He tells us “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and the follow Me” (John 10:27). God remembered Noah, and He will also remember you.  If your not sure of this and don’t know what to say or do…just say Jesus!

11-12-2015 Genesis 7:17-24

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17 For forty days the flood kept coming on the earth, and as the waters increased they lifted the ark high above the earth. 18 The waters rose and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. 19 They rose greatly on the earth, and all the high mountains under the entire heavens were covered. 20 The waters rose and covered the mountains to a depth of more than fifteen cubits. 21 Every living thing that moved on land perished—birds, livestock, wild animals, all the creatures that swarm over the earth, and all mankind. 22 Everything on dry land that had the breath of life in its nostrils died. 23 Every living thing on the face of the earth was wiped out; people and animals and the creatures that move along the ground and the birds were wiped from the earth. Only Noah was left, and those with him in the ark. 24 The waters flooded the earth for a hundred and fifty days.

Here we see how God wiped out all living things.  The only thing that was saved were those in the ark.  To me I see a correlation between what God did here, and what happens when we are born again.  When we are born again we are saved just like Noah and his family.  For me, God had to wipe out all the wickedness that was in me, and at the same time save the part that was righteous.  I am in no way perfect, or will ever be, but I try to live in a way that’s pleasing to God.  How I do this is by being obedient to God’s word, meditation and prayer, and showing love, kindness, and compassion to everyone God brings in my path.  This brings a peace and joy that I have never felt in my life.  Words can’t describe what God has done for me.  The truth is that everyone has to make a choice.  Here at Helping Up Mission we have an acronym to describe how to get to that place I have described.  It’s called HOW.  It goes like this…. Today I will be Honest about who I am and who God is (I’m not God), Open to what God is saying to me, and  Willing to do the things He asks me to do.  It works pretty well, however if you still are lost and don’t know what to say or do….just say Jesus!

11-11-2015 Genesis 7:13-16

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13 On the very same day Noah and Noah’s sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth, and Noah’s wife and the three wives of his sons with them, entered the ark— 14 they and every beast after its kind, all cattle after their kind, every creeping thing that creeps on the earth after its kind, and every bird after its kind, every bird of every sort. 15 And they went into the ark to Noah, two by two, of all flesh in which is the breath of life. 16 So those that entered, male and female of all flesh, went in as God had commanded him; and the Lord shut him in.

So it was God who shut the door.  Have you ever felt shut out or rejected. Unloved or unworthy.  I know I have, however God has always been there for me and His door is open.  This will not be the case forever.  The Bible tells us that judgement day is coming.  God will once again shut the door.  This time it will be just like in the days of Noah.  Everyone and everything inside the ark were saved.  Today, everyone who accepts God’s free gift of salvation will be inside.  Jesus said “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved” (John 10:9).  God does indeed want all to be saved, however some will reject this gift and be damned. For the scripture teaches us that there is no salvation outside of Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12, John 14:6).  Here in lies “the choice”.  What is “the choice”? Here is the reality… death will consummate the choice.  At some point all, of us will ask…who am I? Where did I come from? What’s next?  There really is only two choices.  Light and darkness.  Jesus said “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life”(John 8:12).  Those who don’t follow Jesus follow darkness.  Today I choose the light.  If you are in a dark place, or if you just don’t know what to say or do…just say Jesus!

11-10-2015 Genesis 7:7-12

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7 So Noah, with his sons, his wife, and his sons’ wives, went into the ark because of the waters of the flood. 8 Of clean animals, of animals that are unclean, of birds, and of everything that creeps on the earth, 9 two by two they went into the ark to Noah, male and female, as God had commanded Noah. 10 And it came to pass after seven days that the waters of the flood were on the earth. 11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened. 12 And the rain was on the earth forty days and forty nights.

After reading this over and over I see that Noah along with his family and all of the animals entered the ark just as God had commanded.  How does this apply to us?  Jesus said “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).  We need to follow God’s word. If we continue to refuse the commands of God we will utterly be condemned.  I don’t about you, but I want what Jesus has promised.  Jesus promised us a place with him.  In John 14 He tells his disciples: “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”  This is great, however many don’t know the way just as Thomas the disciple ask Jesus “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  This was true then and is true today and every day.  In order for God not to shut the door on you, just like in the days of Noah, you must follow Jesus.  There is no other way.  So for today, if you don’t know what to say….just say Jesus!

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