October 31, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO KEEP ME SATISFIED

Proverbs 28:25 He that is of a proud heart stirreth up strife: but he that putteth his trust in the LORD shall be made fat.

I know what you are thinking. This is not a Biblical mandate to put on a few extra pounds. I have heard numerous opinions and jokes about this verse over the years. Most of which have nothing to do with what the Bible is talking about here.

Individuals that seem to be constantly stirring up things with others are normally discontent people. Pride has quite a stronghold on their life. They are normally never happy about anything. They are always the victim, things are always unfair, and they always have juicy information to share. Strife follows them wherever they go, but they never think that it is their fault. They are so discontent with their own life that they become consumed with everyone else’s. This verse teaches that it is a heart problem. “He that is of a PROUD heart stirreth up strife”. There are normally some major issues in their own heart. They have been disappointed by people or life. They have kept their eyes on circumstances instead of keeping their eyes on the Lord. They are always stirring up strife. They are critical of everyone else’s accomplishments, jealous of everyone else’s possessions, and interjecting in other people’s lives.

God says here that we do not have to be that way. God says, “he that putteth his trust in the LORD shall be made fat”. This word “fat” means satisfied, or literally content. It means that I am so content with what God has done and given me, that I have no interest in obsessing about everyone else’s life. I am so thankful for my possessions, that I am not jealous of others possessions. I am so thankful for what God has done for me, that I could never begrudge what God has done for others. When I trust the Lord, I believe with all my heart that whatever I have is exactly what I needed. I trust that God will give me what is best, and I will forget the rest. People that are stirring up strife are really deep down constantly searching for satisfaction. Isn’t it amazing that the only way to get that satisfaction is to simply be content with what you have? It’s trusting in God’s provision for you. I am persuaded that God is able to keep me satisfied.

October 30, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO HELP US UNDERSTAND

PROVERBS 28:5 Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the LORD understand all things.

So many things in life can seem so unfair. Each of us can be so confused why certain things happen, and why certain things happen to certain people. We can begin to question why God would allow these things to take place. Solomon spent much of his life struggling with the things that seemed unfair, vain, and unsatisfactory. Moses could not understand why God did certain things. Jacob certainly struggled with it too. We could go on and on with individuals in and out of the Bible that did not understand certain “judgments”.

This word “judgment” means verdict or ruling. We believe that God is our judge. I do believe that God is seated on the “highest throne”. There are so many things that we will never understand in our minds because we are not Holy and perfect like God is and we do not know the past, present, and future as God does. Each of us are also inherently “evil”. We were all born with a sinful flesh. Even though we might be saved, we still have an evil flesh. When you and I are being controlled by that flesh, we will struggle with some of God’s judgments.

Notice what this verse says. “They that seek the LORD understand all things”. This is the key. Here is the answer: Instead of seeking answers, we need to seek the Lord. Instead of seeking what is fair, we need to seek the Lord. Instead of seeking justice, we need to seek the Lord. This verse makes it clear that for us to begin to understand God, we must seek Him. As long as you and I are seeking reasons, we will never understand. You see, when we forget about justice, forget about answers, forget about what makes sense to us, and forget about what we think is fair, and we just determine to seek God and His will, it is amazing how we will begin to be at peace with what God does. When our old flesh kicks up, we’re going to struggle with everything that happens. But when we submit to the Lord and seek His face, we begin to accept and submit to what God is trying to do. I am persuaded that He is able to help us understand.

October 29, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO RECEIVE EACH OF US

Romans 14:1 Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations. 2 For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs. 3 Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him. 4 Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.

We all have our own opinions. We all have our own quirks. We also all have our own weaknesses. Unfortunately, that brings with it a whole lot of judgement of others. When someone has a different opinion than we do, or when someone does things differently than we do, we criticize that. Criticism is a form of rejecting. When it comes to spiritual issues, some people just don’t know better. Some have not been taught any different. Some people just have a different perspective. The Bible is our final authority, and the truth of God’s Word is not debatable, but there are some religious opinions and preferences that differ. God says that we should receive those that are of like faith, but not to argue and debate with each other constantly.

In this passage, some apparently felt is acceptable to eat certain things that other people did not think was acceptable. The difference is that if a God receives them, who are we not to? Verse four says, “who art thou that judges another man’s servant”. God is saying that other people do not answer to us. They are not our servants. God is who other believers answer to, not us. God is able to receive them, and God is able to make them stand. If a brother or sister in Christ is wrong about something, God will take care of it. It is God’s responsibility and right to do so. We should still love and care about each other because we are part of the same family. We might feel differently about some things. We are all probably right about some things and wrong about some things. Either way, we all serve and answer to God, not each other. If God is able to receive someone, shouldn’t we?

October 27, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO GET OUR ATTENTION

Jeremiah 22:21 I spake unto thee in thy prosperity; but thou saidst, I will not hear. This hath been thy manner from thy youth, that thou obeyedst not my voice.

Those who have put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ are now the Children of God. God is now our Father. We belong to Him. Having children of my own, there is nothing that I love more than doing something special for my boys. I do not enjoy disciplining them. I do not enjoy dealing negatively with my sons. I want them to be happy, and I want them to know that I love them. However, if they will not listen to me when I am giving and generous to them, then I will have to resort to other means to get their attention.

God says here that He has tried to speak to the people of Juday by bringing them prosperity, but they just would not listen. In fact, according to the verse, they went as far as to tell God that they were not listening. God said something interesting here. God says that this has been “thy manner from thy youth”. God was saying that He might expect something like this from an immature, young baby, but He would expect more from them by now. Here are people that never really grew up spiritually.

A lot of people are like that. You can understand a little more not listening to God before a person knows better, but why would you continue to not listen when you do know better. God is saying you didn’t listen to me before, and you’re not listening to me now. God is saying that He had tried to be good to them, and tried to be generous, but they won’t listen. So now God is going to have to go a different route. Now God is going to have to try a different approach.

You and I have a tendency to listen to God when things are not going well, but as soon as we become prosperous and things start to run smoothly, we fail to hear what God has to say to us. It is as if we think we don’t need Him now. We only listen to God when we think He has something to say that we need to hear. Dear friend, we need to hear everything God has to say to us. We need to hear it all. If God has been generous to you, then show appreciation by listening intently to what He has to say. Let’s not make God to go to other lengths to get our attention.

October 26, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO RECOMPENSE EVIL

PROVERBS 20:22 Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the LORD, and he shall save thee.

We have all heard the verse:

* Romans 12:19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

I believe one of the hardest things in life is to feel unfairly treated, and yet do nothing about it. Every part of who we are desires to avenge ourselves when we feel we have been done wrong. It is human nature.

Our verse in Proverbs says that instead of pushing back at someone that has done you wrong, “wait on the Lord”. There is that word again. Why does so much of God’s system require that we “wait”? “Waiting” takes you and I out of the equation and then gives God control. Impatience is always a sign that we want control. We have a problem. We want control, and God demands control. Our verse teaches us that if we wait on the Lord, “He shall save” us. If we do not wait on the Lord, we shall make things worse. The verse does not say that, but it is implied.

Normally, when we are done wrong, the part of us that becomes so wounded is our “ego” or “pride”. We all know what God’s Word says about our pride. Here is my point. If we will wait on the Lord, God will not only “save thee” from the person that did us wrong. God will not only “save thee” from the circumstance that has discouraged us. God will also save us from ourselves. The worst damage that is done to our life is normally not the damage that someone has done to us, it is the damage that we do to ourselves. Our reaction sometimes to a wrong that has been done to us can create more damage to our life than the wrong that was done. If we do not wait on the Lord to avenge us, the odds are high that we will cause ourselves some very bad damage. I encourage you today, God is able to recompense evil that is done to you in your life. Let Him take care of it.

October 25, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO TO FAN THE FLAME, NOT PUT IT OUT

Isaiah 42:1 Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. 2 He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. 3 A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. 4 He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law

JESUS DOESN’T QUENCH WHAT IS STILL SMOKING.
“SMOKING FLAX” is a linen wick of a candle or lamp that is almost quenched. Jesus did not quench the spiritual fire in anyone, He kindled it. Maybe there was a time when you were on fire for God, but your flame has begun to flicker out. Maybe a passion used to burn in your soul for The Lord. Maybe you were in Gods Word and it burned inside your soul, but you have grown apart from God’s Word. Maybe the preaching of Gods Word used to kindle a desire to serve The Lord, but you have become more difficult to motivate. Maybe life has thrown some water on your fire. Maybe circumstances have decreased the flame inside your soul. Maybe coldness has entered where heat used to dominate. Maybe gradual apathy has quenched the burning desire that once motivated you to serve God. Maybe you are but a spark of the fire you once were. Maybe the heat of your spiritual fire that had at one time even heated others, has now failed to even heat yourself. Maybe you feel that the fire is gone and fading smoke is all that is left

God will not quench that dying fire, and if you let Him, He will breathe new life into your fire. He will pile the wood of his grace to reignite your fire. He will kindle what is left with His mercy, stoke what is still burning with His Word, and ignite with possibility the burning in your soul. Others might be lining up to criticize what your fire has become. Some might be kicking dirt into the remains of your fire, but God is determined to see you burn once again.

* II Corinthians 4:7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. 8 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; 10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.