| Some thoughts on ' Loving God'..And preparation|
' Hear,O Israel;...thou shalt love the Lord thy God with ALL thy heart,and with ALL thy soul,and with ALL thy mind,and with ALL thy strength..'
' Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.'
* THIS is perfect love.(1Jn. 4:18,...perfect love casteth out fear )
THIS love will cast out fear,because one casts him / her self, through the Grace of God, totally upon God,...and He will comfort us,with a Spirit of trust..peace...joy,...in our hearts.
What does it mean to ' love God '...?
And this is the God that we love ! .....It says, Jn.1:1, In the beginning,was the Word,....and the Word was God
God is Spirit,He is Truth,......He is righteous...
To SEEK the kingdom of God,and His righteousness,.
But how do we do this ?
I would say, by bowing our hearts,and asking,as Paul,..continually,..'What would Thou have for me to do Lord ?'
Not my will, but Thy will.....Oh, but there is a dieing !...But can there be a resurrection, without a death ?
This comes with a promise that He will take care of our needs,...food,..clothing
I believe Steven loved God like this,..When God brought Steven all the way through and out the other side,still in Him,..He saved Steven to the uttermost.... Steven was an overcomer...and that is our desire.
Steven was prepared,..prepare us O'Lord,
| 2012/6/24 0:24||Profile|
| Re: Some thoughts on ' Loving God'..And preparation|
Your Thread here reminded me of something which I read while upgrading the TLJ Site. It is titled "We Have Everything!"
It's in keeping with your saying: "This comes with a promise tht He will take care of our needs, ... food, ... clothing."
We Have Everything
By Wijgert Gooijer
At first glance this sounds slightly exaggerated. People tend to be annoyed and sceptical when they hear a disciple of the Kingdom say a thing like this. Yet throughout the centuries it has been the testimony of the believers. As early as Genesis 33.11 we read that Jacob approached his brother Esau with a gift of cattle. At first Esau refused, saying: 'I have so much'. Jacob replied: 'I have everything'. In his famous 23rd Psalm David confessed: 'The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want'. And in the New Testament the apostle Paul wrote that we have fulness of life in Him, (Col 2.10).
In all these testimonies it is not so much a matter of natural blessings, for all to see, but of the unseen treasures which have become our most valued possessions. That is why, in a seemingly contradictory appraisal, it can be said of a servant of God that he has nothing, and yet possesses everything, (2Cor 6.10).
How is this possible? An old story in 2Kings 4 provides the glorious answer. The widow who approached Elisha the prophet for help was in a tight spot indeed. Her husband had died, and all he left was a whopping big debt which she was unable to pay. However, the moment she contacted the prophet, she proved to have what it takes in the line of faith. The first thing she said was not that she missed her husband so badly. Any self pity she may have had was of secondary importance. She didn't tell Elisha that her husband had left a debt; he had, she said, feared the Lord. Well, that's a positive statement at least. The fact that the prophet of Israel was accessible to her, and her problem, showed him to be a real servant of the living God. This will always be the case in true. servants of God. They have lots of time for the individual, especially for the despised and oppressed individual.
Jesus, the Son of God, was able to give several hours of His time to instruct the woman at the well, a citizen of Samaria without any influence or standing whatsoever. He didn't think this a waste of time. He kept concentrating on the single person. He wasn't carried away when thousands started to follow Him. The attention of the masses did not turn our Lord into a platform orator who does nothing but preachify. He was truly human and had a warm interest in the individual. The danger for preachers and evangelists is, that their service for God is possible only from behind a battery of microphones. They have no time or attention for the individual and his problems, and questions. They prefer to send him on to somebody else. Sometimes they even go so far as to say that personal counselling does not form part of their ministry. That, however, is self-deceit. Every true servant of God will be a good counsellor in the first place. Attention for and counselling of the individual cannot be pushed to the background in any duty or ministry in the Kingdom of God. He who does this, has strayed from the way of truth and serves God in a manner which was foreign to the prophets and apostles. It will show in the fellowship between individuals if a person is fit for the platform. Any clown, compere, salesman, politician, actor or demagogue will be all right on the platform. But their value as human beings does not show on the stage, but in man to man contact. A man of God is a person with lots of interest in his fellow men. Under no circumstances will he try to get away from this responsibility.
Good Pastoral Care:
It is typical for the attacks of the evil one on the children of God that he always takes along with him a number of his comrades. The widow's husband had hardly been buried when the creditor knocked on the door. The troubles and worries began to pile up. This is satan's way of wearing out the children of God, but praise the Lord who made a public display of the powers of darkness. We know their intentions and tactics! When the widow told the man of God about her worries, the prophet proved to be no magician or Santa Claus who conjures up ready-for-use answers out of his hat. The religious masses like to make a man of God into a kind of conjurer who is able to produce anything they ask him for.
Elisha, in his answer to the widow, stressed the grace of God which has appeared to train us, (Titus 2:12). He did not call up a shower of silver dollars, but acted as any good pastor would act: he asked her what she had in her house. This is sound pastoral counsel in our days.
Elisha's example might well serve as a correction of the hasty layings on of hands whenever somebody has a problem. The ministry of the laying on of hands and rebuking or casting out demons is one of the glorious treasures of God's people. But we have to understand its limits: we can't 'minister' each other into heaven. It sometimes seems as if laying on of hands and discernment of spirits is given more importance than faith. If this is the case, we have gone beyond the limits. Outside faith the laying on of hands is a gesture without meaning. This is the reason why Elisha began by asking what she had in her house.
The house is the place from which victory and abundance start. All who call for help with the words: "I've lost everything", first have to change to an attitude of faith. The widow answered that she had nothing but a small jar of oil. She showed to be well aware of what she had. She might have said: "1 happen to have a small jar of oil, but apart from that I have nothing". This would have been a statement of unbelief.
In the same way a brother or sister might say: "I am a child of God and baptized in the Holy Spirit, but apart from that I have nothing ...". This is unbelief and unfaithful neglect of the gifts of God. A believer may find himself in a situation where he has lots of troubles and a whole list of worries, but his conclusion will always be: "And yet I am a child of God!"
That which follows the word 'yet' is decisive, not that which precedes it. At first glance this seems a mere matter of syntax, but actually the whole meaning is different. The widow believed. She said to the prophet: "Your maidservant has nothing in the house, except a jar of oil". Here the words of Jesus were fulfilled: "For to him who has will more be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away", (Matt 13:12).
When a child of God has problems and becomes impressed by their size to the extent of neglecting his inheritance, and acts as if the Baptism in the Spirit does not amount to much, he finally will lose everything. Of course Jesus' words are about believers, for how can things be taken away from those who have nothing? You cannot get blood out of a stone. In these words the Lord addressed those who received God's grace, yet live as if they are poor beggars. Brothers and sisters who find their objections more important than God's grace are in danger of having received God's grace in vain, (2Cor 6:1). It is remarkable how in all her worries the small jar of oil evidently had such great value for the widow. She did not forget that she had it at home. It may seem unimpressive, but the believer does not despise the day of small things, (Zech 4:10).
Plenty of Oil:
The widow's attitude of faith gave Elisha a chance to continue with her. Her little possessions proved to be a beginning of abundance. The prophet told her to go and borrow empty vessels of all the neighbors'. "Go outside', he told her pointedly. When he was building the ark on dry land, Noah had every opportunity to have himself mocked and ridiculed. The same applied to the widow, and to all believers, at that. While she and her sons carried the empty vessels from the neighbors to their own house, many people in the village must have thought she had gone mad. Or probably they pitied her. "When her husband died, she seemed to stand up to the strain, but now, look at her, she's cracked". The widow knew better. She had the courage to be a spectacle to the world.
The things which then started to happen took place behind closed doors. "Shut the door upon yourself", Elisha said, for what was going to happen was no unbeliever's business. The miracle of the never-ending flow of oil could easily have deteriorated into a stunt to publicize the work of the great man of God. "Let's get the newspapers and TV', many people would say nowadays. After all this is to the glory of God". Elisha did not share this view. "Shut the door", he said. Inside, the Lord shows us His glory. He does not intend it to be a means of propaganda. God does not need a miracle to make Himself acceptable.
Once the widow started pouring, she never stopped. No quick glances to see how many containers had been filled already. She kept the final purpose in mind: everything has to be filled. This is a beautiful image of the inclination of heart we, God's co-workers, should have. When you are ploughing, it is useless to look back to see what has already been done. Once we start doing this, the evil one will easily be able to get a finger in the pie. On the upward way we need not take a look in the mirror to see how tall we have already grown in the Kingdom of God. By doing this some fall into a snare of the evil one; this one because he is quite satisfied with the progress he made; that one because he thinks he made no progress at all and starts having feelings of guilt and inferiority. Paul said about this that he does not judge himself, (1Cor 4:3). He kept his attention focused on the final purpose.
To Be In Christ:
The oil in the widow's jar is an image of the power and glory of the Holy Spirit which the believers have received. A life in the Kingdom of God without the Baptism in the Holy Spirit is just as impossible as life without oil in Israel of old. Oil was used to anoint priests and kings. Without oil temple service and royal dignity were impossible. Oil also served as currency: for the timber he received, king Solomon paid king Hiram of Tyre a huge quantity of oil. Oil was also used in dressing wounds. That is why the Holy Spirit is also called the Comforter. Oil was used in baking bread and cakes. And there was oil in the lamps to be able to see at night. Without oil, life would come to a stop. If in our days therefore people think that the work of the Holy Spirit is for evangelization only, or for the development of undeveloped countries, or for guidance when reading God's Word, they certainly limit the Spirit of God. All vessels have to be filled.
We too should keep in mind that which Elisha said to the widow: "And not too few". We received the Holy Spirit that all parts of our life should be completely governed by Him. 'Being in Jesus Christ' means having received His Spirit and living by that Spirit. For Christians who live this way the Word of God has great promises.
In Philippians 4:19 Paul said: "My God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus". He could have said, quite superficially and placidly: "God will provide". But the Lord can only 'provide in glory'. He is capable of supplying every need, without any exception. God can only 'supply in glory' because He does so 'according to his riches', that means, according to the fulness that is in Him. Paul added: 'in Christ Jesus', that is, in faith.
He who lives in faith has everything. In great tribulations, in heavy battles, when the problems seem to overwhelm us, the victory always starts with a positive answer of faith to the question: "Tell me, what have you in the house?" If we refuse to leave this example, we will have abundant life, being conquerors in all circumstances.
| 2012/6/24 16:03||Profile|
| Re: |
Thank you for your response and the ortical.
I've tried to go to your tlj site,..To check it out...
.maybe you are working on it ?
| 2012/6/24 16:34||Profile|
| Re: |
Yuh know? Sometimes I can read something and then years later I read it again and come away with so much more that I did not pick up previously. This was the case with this particular article. It was first published in 1973 and I had read it at that time. But when I was having to import during the TLJ Update process today, I was thrilled once again to reaffirm the treasure of it.
I will copy/paste another article in a few minutes which you might find a good read. I re-discovered it today and it's titled " All Things Are Yours".
Unfortunately, I'm still working on the TLJ Site Update. It should all be completed by tomorrow for sure.
Ummm, I discovered that there was a surprisingly amount of work to accomplish because the 'Live Bible Conference Chat' and the 'TLJ Community' (Facebook clone) were needing major Code Updates.
So, the easiest and fastest thing to do was to erase the previous Site entirely and rebuild the Site again from scratch.
So, my apologies to you.
It's actually all working properly; but I'm now importing the 1000 plus articles/documents to the Updated Site. For sure everything will be up an'running again by tomorrow early morning.
| 2012/6/24 16:56||Profile|
| Re: All Things Are Yours|
All Things Are Yours
By J.E. van den Brink
"For all things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future, all are yours; and you are Christ's; and Christ is God's. (1Cor 3:22-23).
The Congregation In The Center:
At the end of 1 Corinthians 3, Paul the apostle summarizes the tenor of his letters and the purpose of the calling of all workers in the Kingdom of God: for all things are yours.
The congregation of God is the centre of everything. Paul, Apollos or Cephas are not its owners but simply the servants of God's temple on earth. Although certain workers regard the congregation as their private affair, for God the congregation, not the servant, is in the centre. It is not the gardeners that matter but the garden: "For we are God's fellow workers; you are God's field". It is not the master builder that matters but the temple: "You are God's building", (1Cor 3:9). True, the workers are indispensable, but this only applies as far as their contribution to the building of the congregation is concerned.
It is high time for us full gospel Christians to consider what the Bible has to say about the congregation. During the last half century many things have demanded our attention and certain truths have been rediscovered, yet not very many sound and strong congregations have been founded. Circles, groups, assemblies and meetings were established under one slogan or another, around one person or another, but building healthy congregations proved to be too difficult.
Very few seem to realize that Jesus Christ and his congregation form an inseparable unity. Where the Lord is there is His body, where His body is there is the Lord. For Paul it was not only a matter of an invisible, heavenly body but also of its concrete realisation on earth. The wisdom of God is manifested on earth in the congregation. In it He carries out his plan for man. Only there can be experienced the bond of love, the positive attitude of the brethren toward one another. If we say we have fellowship with God, if we think we walk in the light, the only way to prove it is by having fellowship with one another.
True Christianity excludes individualism. True Christianity forms spiritual families where eternal, unbreakable bonds are established. The final purpose of our faith, the salvation of our souls, will be reached collectively and together. To that end God has given to the congregation apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers and evangelists, "for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God". "That you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have power to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you maybe filledwith all the fulness of God". "That throughthe church the manifold wisdom of God might be made known (here on earth) to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places".
Paul addressed the believers of our days, the people who hate to go beyond having devotional gospel meetings here and there, when he wrote: "Or do you despise the church of God?" You hide in various activities such as evangelisation and the missions, but you fail to carry out the great commandment of the Lord: to build congregations.
World, Life or Death:
All things belong to the true church of God, be it world .... !
Whether we believe it or not, the whole universe exists for no other reason than to produce the church. Every created thing, whether in the visible or in the unseen world, is there for the sake of the congregation. Moses, the representative of the Old Covenant, once said to the people: "When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of men, he fixed the bounds of the people according to the number of the sons of Israel", (Deut 32:8). Israel saw Jerusalem as the 'navel' of the earth. How beautiful is the insight this shadow gives us about the spiritual reality. To use a false metaphor, the congregation is the cork which keeps the world afloat. The church is the New Creation which was produced by the old. She is permanent and eternal in a transient and temporal world. She will produce the future rulers of the world, for "they shall reign on earth".
All things belong to the congregation, be it life or death ... !
The decisive battle between life and death is fought in the congregation, and the final victory over death is won by the church. She is a stronghold of life in a world where death reigns supreme. Only the congregation will conquer death, for in her words of eternal life are working. In her sinners are saved, set free and baptized with the Spirit of God. In her healing and health can be obtained. In the congregation it proves true that "death is swallowed up in victory. O death where is your victory? Death where is your sting?"
Life and death are yours, for the congregation has eternal life and victory over death. in her can be found the people who have been raised from the dead and transferred into a newness of life. "The old has passed away, behold, the new has come".
The Present or the Future:
"For all things are yours, whether the present or the future". In the present as well as in the future the thing that really matters is the church of Jesus Christ. In times past the imagination of the average believer was mainly occupied with the future; their dreams of a fairy-tale heaven were based on infantile, pedestrian and earthly ideas. After having travelled past a number of stars in space, in due time the golden throne and the city with the golden streets were expected to be seen. They talked about the friendly angels who carried the souls of dead little children to heaven, but they had no insight whatsoever into the unseen world of the present. The world of the spirits was no concrete realitywhich had to be taken into account in the life of faith. Even God, who is spirit, was pictured in super-natural images.
The principal meaning of repentance and regeneration was in the security they offered after death. Too often I have sat through gospel meetings where the people were told: "Repent, for if you would die tonight, where would your soul be ?" Never did I hear them say: "Repent, for if you have another twenty, forty or sixty years to live you will have a chance to amount to something in the Kingdom of God and you'll be able to lay up treasure in heaven".
We have the present to build the Kingdom of God and to prepare for ourselves a garment of righteousness by means of our righteous deeds. We, the church of Jesus Christ, are called to grow up in grace and to carry out together the task He gave us to do.
By the Spirit poured out in the congregation we begin to understand the thoughts of God and to know His plan, and we are called to be fellow-workers of God to carry out His plans in detail. The works of God do not resemble the confusion of threads on the back of an embroidered cloth. Rather, they are like a well planned design and specification of a Master Builder. This plan God seeks to reveal to us by his Spirit, that it may be carried out in the congregation. Living in the heavenly places, the congregation does not see the back of God's embroidery but its beautiful top-side.
If we are looking for chaos it can be found in this world which is ruled by the lawless one. The present belongs to the congregation, for her to be founded and edified in it.
To the congregation also belongs the future, whether this is the near future in which the temple of God will be completed, or the distant future of eternity when the congregation will be on the throne of God with Christ her head.
Paul did not know of anything in the time ahead which would have any importance for God except the church. "All is yours",he said. All the promises and predictions of the apostles and prophets are yours. As it says of the prophets of the Old Covenant:" It was revealed to them that theywere serving not themselves but you, in the things which have now been announced".
If, therefore, the bible mentions the reign of Christ on earth, the theocracy of Jesus, this also includes the reign of the church. As the Lord will then reign, so will the church in his name. "But you are Christ's, and Christ is God's". The church is directed at Christ, she belongs to Him; and Christ is directed at God the Father.
The congregation is one with Christ, as the wife with her husband. She is one spirit with Him. When He appears, she will be revealed with Him. "The head of every man is Christ, the head of a woman is her husband, and the head of Christ is God". "All is yours but you are Christ's". And at the marriage feast of the Lamb, "the Son himself will also be subjected to Him who put all things under him, that God may be everything to every one".
| 2012/6/24 17:09||Profile|