11 For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good. Titus 2:11-14
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. John 3:16
Blessings today! It is Wisdom Wednesday! As we have focused on Hebrews, my heart has been touched by the Holy Spirit’s revealing Jesus as the Superior One…Superior to any ‘g’od we may choose to worship. My heart has been pressed all the more with the need for every person to know Jesus in an intimate, personal, devoted relationship. Today’s post are just a few Tozer quotes and most importantly, Scriptures that I hope will bring Selah moments, pause and ponder. Be blessed today in the Presence of the Lord!
But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because He suffered death, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone. Hebrews 2:9
See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end. 15 As has just been said: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.” Hebrews 3:12-19
The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. Romans 1:18-20
And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 35 For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. (Mark 8:34–35)
“You are My witnesses,” declares the Lord, “And My servant whom I have chosen, So that you may know and believe Me And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, And there will be none after Me. “I, even I, am the Lord, And there is no savior besides Me. “It is I who have declared and saved and proclaimed, And there was no strange god among you; So you are My witnesses,” declares the Lord, “And I am God. “Even from eternity I am He, And there is none who can deliver out of My hand; I act and who can reverse it?” Isaiah 43:10-13
One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple. Psalm 27:4
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
11 We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand. 12 In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! 13 Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. 14 But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Hebrews 5:11-14
Blessings today and thanks so much for your prayers, thoughts, and encouragement. God has been faithful and I am healed and renewed. I pray all is well with you.
Hebrews 5:11, “We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand” presents a question for each of us: “How is your spiritual development coming along? How is your understanding? Are you seeking God, meditating upon His Word day and night?”
Verse 11 speaks of a very sad condition for any true believer for God tells us in Proverbs 4:7, “The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.” This passage encourages us to never tire of seeking understanding and wisdom from the Lord. The ESV translates Hebrews 5:11 to say, “About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing.“
Dull of hearing…you know, when we no longer want to read our Bibles, when we do so out of duty rather than fellowship and thirst, when we have no idea what we just read…we just know we fulfilled the law and did it, when we blame the preacher and say we got nothing, and the Sunday School teacher is always just off…you know, when we no longer hide the Word in our hearts, when the Word is no longer sweet to our taste-sweeter than the honeycomb, when we would rather spend our time listening to the world’s rhetoric than the Word.
Another reason this condition is sad is because the writer of Hebrews, the Holy Spirit, has truth to impart but the dullness of hearing makes it hard for the Word to penetrate the hearer’s heart and thereby faith is not increased and transformation slowed. It is a side effect of embracing dullness. The condition get worst because in reality, there is no stand still in Kingdom living. We either grow or backslide depending on our response to the Word. We should always remember that faith comes by hearing the Word of God (Romans 10:17).
Dullness of hearing is a symptom and when we know this is the place we are spiritually, it is time to seek help by falling on knees before the Lord, confessing our sin of dullness, repent and asking the Lord to cleanse our hearts, open His Word to our hearts, and our hearts to His Words.
We need to have attitude of the Thessalonians,
“And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the Word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men but as what it really is, the Word of God, which is at work in you believers.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13
“Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be mature.” 1 Corinthians 14:20
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
“Show me your ways, Lord, teach me your paths.
Guide me in your truth and teach me, for You are God my Savior,
and my hope is in you all day long.” Psalm 25:4-5
“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3
For the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account. Hebrews 4:12-13
I am praising the Lord today for His Word…that The Living Word of God is able to cut right through the mess in my heart to defeat the enemy and I can walk in the victory in Jesus died to give me. “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly (John 10:10″.
And this is eternal life: [it means] to know (to perceive, recognize, become acquainted with, and understand) You, the only true and real God, and [likewise] to know Him, Jesus [as the] Christ (the Anointed One, the Messiah), Whom You have sent. John 17:3 AMPC
So thankful that the Word of God is not dead but lives and has the power to change the heart, to turn the heart of stone into the heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26). This truth is so important because as Jeremiah 17:9 tells us that “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?” The LORD is the One who knows every man’s heart and His Word is able to change it. The Word is able to penetrate the heart of man more than any two edged, sharp sword…deep into the innermost being and it exposes the heart of man.
The Word judges the thoughts, attitudes, motive, and intent of a man. This is why I often pray from Psalm 139, search me and know my heart…lay it bare. Show me the ‘Pat’ You know. Let there me no evil unbelief in my heart. Let me not cherish sin. Give me a clean heart that loves You with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind, and all my strength…that I might serve You and display Your glory!
Only the Word of God teamed with the Spirit of God can “pierce even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow” to reveal to man the true inner workings of his soul and spirit. There is no hiding or room for getting it twisted, verse 13 assures us that God sees us all, every heart, through and through, nothing is “hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.” The LORD is the Great Reveal-er and is no respecter of persons. No one will be excluded.
What a blessing it is that God loves us so much that He deals with our hearts in this way. “For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. For it is written: “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” So then each of us shall give account of himself to God (Romans 14:10-12}.”
The Word of God leads us in the way of repentance, renewal, and refreshment as our loving Father washes us by His Word and causes us to walk in obedient faith and claim His promises. The Day of accounting is coming, what a joy to know that because of the Living and Powerful Word of God that transforms and keeps hearts, it is possible for us to hear the LORD say, “Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master (Matthew 25:21).”
So looking forward to that Day when we will bow before the Almighty, Holy, and Righteous God and proclaim
“Not to us, Lord, not to us but to Your Name be the glory,
because of Your love and faithfulness.” Psalm 115:1
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
In my distress I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help.
From His temple He heard my voice; my cry came before Him, into His ears.
15 Moses replied to his father-in-law, “Because the people come to me to inquire of God. 16 Whenever they have a dispute, it comes to me, and I make a decision between one man and another. I teach them God’s statutes and laws.” 17 “What you’re doing is not good,” Moses’ father-in-law said to him. 18 “You will certainly wear out both yourself and these people who are with you, because the task is too heavy for you. You can’t do it alone. 19 Now listen to me; I will give you some advice, and God be with you. You be the one to represent the people before God and bring their cases to Him. 20 Instruct them about the statutes and laws, and teach them the way to live and what they must do. 21 But you should select from all the people able men, God-fearing, trustworthy, and hating bribes. Place them over the people as commanders of thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens. 22 They should judge the people at all times. Then they can bring you every important case but judge every minor case themselves. In this way you will lighten your load, and they will bear it with you. 23 If you do this, and God so directs you, you will be able to endure, and also all these people will be able to go home satisfied.” 24 Moses listened to his father-in-law and did everything he said. Exodus 18:15..23
So…you are called to be a leader of God’s people. God uses Jethro to give us some key points of leadership. I won’t take much time but I pray that you will take some ‘selah’ time and examine yourself before the Lord.
- Teach the “God’s statutes and laws,” not your opinions. Just lovingly and gently put your finger on the Word…and teach, what God has to say is far more important than your opinions. It is His Word that brings life, not ours UNLESS our words are His Word. 🙂
- Represent the people before God and bring their cases to Him. This is called prayer, pray for those you lead. I believe this is more that one big swoop, bless them, Lord prayer. We are to bring their specific cases before the Lord.
- “Teach them the way to live and what they must do.” Please note that in verse 2o, instructing the people about the statues and laws is followed by the word “and.”
It is one thing to know a Bible verse and another to know how to practically apply that verse to one’s life. Leaders are called to teach both, with words and action.
- Leaders should be people who are “able, God-fearing, trustworthy, and hating bribes.”
- Verse 23 – don’t leave God out and go it alone. First, discern that God is in fact leading you and then keep Him as your Leader. It is easy to begin with God and then plow ahead and leave Him behind. When we allow God to lead us, we find that He provides everything we need to carry our our assignments to His glory, lead the people for His glory, and endure while witnessing His glory along the journey. Both the leader and people will find their satisfaction in the Lord. There is no sweeter place to be!
- Be able to listen and accept counsel and do all God leads you to do as He sends and uses others give you His wisdom. There is not even a glimmer of Moses being offended or declaring his own importance or knowledge. He listened, received, and moved on a due word in due season to establish the system that God was putting in place.
Selah, pause and ponder and pray!
Blessings today! It is Wisdom Wednesday!
The blog on yesterday centered around Psalm 119 and the blessings of praying the Word remains with me. Today, I am praying God will our stir hearts around the great treasure of His Word and prayer once again. I pray that the Scriptures and quotes from my friend, A. W. Tozer will be a blessing to us all. Please leave a comment if so inspired by the Lord!
Blessed are those whose ways are blameless,
who walk according to the law of the Lord.
Blessed are those who keep his statutes
and seek him with all their heart— Psalm 119:1-2
How sweet are your words to my taste,
sweeter than honey to my mouth!
I gain understanding from your precepts;
therefore I hate every wrong path. Psalm 119:103-104
Yet you are near, Lord,
and all your commands are true.
Long ago I learned from your statutes
that you established them to last forever. Psalm 119:151-152
Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies,
I keep your precepts with all my heart.
Their hearts are callous and unfeeling,
but I delight in your law. Psalm 119:69-70
Deal with your servant according to your love
and teach me your decrees.
I am your servant; give me discernment
that I may understand your statutes. Psalm 119:124-125
Your word, Lord, is eternal;
it stands firm in the heavens.
Your faithfulness continues through all generations;
you established the earth, and it endures. Psalm 119:89-90
I seek you with all my heart;
do not let me stray from your commands.
I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you. Psalm 119:10-11
David praised the Lord in the presence of the whole assembly, saying,
“Praise be to You, Lord , the God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting.
Yours, Lord , is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
for everything in heaven and earth is Yours. Yours, Lord , is the kingdom;
You are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from You;
You are the ruler of all things. In Your hands are strength and power to exalt
and give strength to all. Now, our God, we give You thanks, and praise Your
glorious name. “But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able
to give as generously as this? Everything comes from You, and we have
given You only what comes from Your hand.
1 Chronicles 29:10-14
The holiday of Thanksgiving 2016 has come and gone BUT God’s goodness remains.
David prayed the above prayer before the people in regards to the gifts given to build the temple. As I look around me, I can pray the same prayer in regards to my life. Who am I that I would even know the One True and Living God in intimate relationship? Who am I that Jesus would give His life? Who am I that I would have the bounty of His Word and Spirit? Who am I that the Lord would so generously bless my husband and I with our sons and grands? Who am I that as we have faced the enemy time and time again, I Am That I Am has been our Advocate and Defender? Who am I that when I have absolutely messed up, the Lord looked past my fault and saw my need? Who am I to know God’s amazing grace and tender mercy? Who am I that the Potentate of the Universe would come to my rescue? Who am I that when my body was diseased, Jehovah Rapha brought forth healing? Who am I that my water runs clean and I have a choice of what my meal will be?
I won’t bother you with the rest of my list but do encourage you to spend some Selah time today to make your own…and then follow the example of David and the people in verse 20.
“David said to the whole assembly, “Praise the Lord your God.” So they all praised the Lord, the God of their fathers; they bowed low and fell prostrate before the LORD …”
“Your word I have treasured and stored in my heart, that I may not sin against You.”
Psalm 119:11 AMP
Psalm 119 is the longest chapter in the Bible. It has 176 verses. I love it because it exalts the Word of God! It declares in so many glorious and descriptive ways the beauty, power and excellence of God’s Word!
For me, The Word, is God’s love letter to the world. Jesus is the Living Word and the Holy Bible is the written, God-breathed Word and my most prized possession. It causes my heart to sing because through His Word, I can commune and fellowship with my God. The One who loved me so much that He gave His only, begotten, special, unique Son that He and I could experience intimate relationship with one another. He truly is Abba Father, the loving and personal Father. My relationship with Jesus is the single most important aspect of my life.
Reading through Psalm 119 is a delight and praying through it brings such comfort, peace, strength, joy and hope. There is absolutely much power in the Word. Verse 11 speaks of its power to cause us not to sin. I particularly like the Amplified translation as it speaks of treasuring and storing the Word in our hearts. The Word in our hearts is a strong defense against sin and broken fellowship with our Lord and Savior.
Merriam-Webster defines treasure as something of great worth or value. Jesus and The Word should be our greatest treasure. Nothing should have any greater worth or value for they are the measure, the plumb line, for all other things.
I looked up some synonyms for treasure and this is what I got:
- appreciate – connotes sufficient understanding to enjoy or admire a thing’s excellence
- value – implies rating a thing highly for its intrinsic worth
- prize – taking a deep sense of pride [value] in something one possesses
- treasure – emphasizes jealously safeguarding something considered precious
- cherish – hold in high estimation
The question is how much do you and I appreciate, value, prize, treasure, and cherish the Word of God? Does it cause us to praise the Lord with an upright heart (v. 7), walk in obedience (v. 1, 8), seek God with all our hearts (v. 2, 10)? Do I rejoice in (v. 14), meditate on (v.15) or delight in (v.16) His Word? The meditation and washing could go on and on, many selah moments to be experienced, so much talking with our Savior…just by spending time in Psalm 119. I pray that you will…me as well! Truly the Word is sweeter than the honey comb, more precious than silver and gold!