Tag Archive | sin

Going over hurdles

This Christian walk is a race like Paul says: 1 Corinthians 9:4 –

Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it.

Hebrews 12:1-

[ The Race of Faith ] Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.

We all know that Olympics are going on just about now.  Sometimes during the Olympics they run hurdles, as they do at other track events.
I wasn’t very good at hurdles, but they can definitely be a part of life that we need to overcome.  We as Christians are supposed to be overcomers.

I don’t know how many of you have actually ran with hurdles, but it takes the strategic balance of running fast and the coordination of lifting up your knees over the hurdles.  After you have passed the challenge of running a regular 25 yard or 50 yard dash, then the next thing that they might put you on is hurdles.
James 1 says:

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. 14 But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. 15 Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.

We are running the marathon race of life in which there are many hurdles.   Many people running a marathon get weak during the final stretch, and precious saints we are in the final stretch before the Lord Jesus comes to judge the righteous and bestow punishment upon the wicked who revel in their sin.   Those that hold on to their faith despite whatever challenges come their way, will receive the crown of life.  What a blessed reward to receive from the Lord, and that we all cast down at His feet when our race is through.  Sometimes hurdles are just hurdles, and sometimes hurdles are much more than hurdles and may actually feel like a wall that you have to crawl over.  But Praise Jesus He has the dunamis which is where we get the word “dynamite” power to go break down that wall that is keeping you from pursuing Him, and going after Him.

At this time I want to encourage those that don’t know the Lord, that may be involved in sins such as adultery, fornication, witchcraft, idolatry, or anything else that you know in your heart of hearts is not right, but you do not want to give it up because it has overaken you, God is a just and merciful God who is slow to anger, and quick to forgive for those who come to Him and turn to Him, but you must take this take this seriously, and not just hit the “like” button on the post.

Heavenly Father,

I know I am a sinner, I know how flawed and imperfect I am and that I fall short of Your perfection and holiness because I know You are the light of this world, and if I cannot stand to be in the presence of the sun, then how can I stand to be in the Presence of You who are brighter then the sun?  I thank You for Your Precious Son Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for my sins and washed me with His precious blood and cleansed me with His righteousness and He His holiness and His grace which overlooks all my sin and gives me a brand new start.  I ask You to do the life changing work in my life and give me a brand new start and I choose to leave behind all forms of wickedness behind and choose to take up Your life and Your Cross in my life.

In Jesus Mighty Name I pray,

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why America is in danger of Judgement and the different levels of sin

 

This video does a clear explanation of sin, trespass, transgression, and iniquity and how as a nation we are following into a dangerous pattern and if we don’t turn around and repent, then we will see the natural disasters increasing.  From the Bible it clearly explains what the cup of iniquity is and how when the cup of iniquity is full God can pour out His Judgment upon a nation.

I believe that the Church should take this standing in these last days –

Ezekiel 3

16 Now it came to pass at the end of seven days that the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore hear a word from My mouth, and give them warning from Me: 18 When I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand. 19 Yet, if you warn the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul.

20 “Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and I lay a stumbling block before him, he shall die; because you did not give him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood I will require at your hand. 21 Nevertheless if you warn the righteous man that the righteous should not sin, and he does not sin, he shall surely live because he took warning; also you will have delivered your soul.”

 

Jeremiah 18:7-9 says –

The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it. And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, 10 if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it.

 

So for the person and the nation when they sin, there is hope, and ultimately it’s hope remains in Jesus Christ, and turning away from the iniquity and repenting and living an honest and decent life before God.  When God gives people over to a reprobate mind, then He has no reason to spare the nation from violent natural disasters much worse than what we saw in Japan’s earthquake, and they were prepared for the worst case scenario.  This isn’t meant to scare you, but to caution you to get your heart right before God, and I know we all make mistakes and do things wrong before God, at times because we are not perfect people.  But as a nation – wouldn’t you like to see less people dying and being killed everywhere?   It would make the President’s job – whoever is easier, it would make the Senate and Congressmen’s job easier, and people would be getting along better if we just followed with this nation was founded on instead of going against the divine order of God.
Once again I’d like to thank Perry Stone for putting into clear perspective this teaching on the dangers of Judgment upon America and the different levels of sin and for now putting his broadcasts on youtube, and to God for allowing our voices to be heard so that we can share the Good News of the Gospel, then we are living a repentant life before God, then we can experience the grace, favor, and mercy of God resting upon our lives.

Thank the Lord that He provides through the programs for the poor and needy through the government, but at the same time, the Government has to do what’s right and follow a sense of ethics and pass laws based on wise decision making, instead of following the crowd and delighting in the demands of the people when they are not the best decisions to make.

 

Jesus knows your name

Jesus Christ knows your name – He knows everything about you.  He died for you so that your soul can be saved.  He is the lover of your soul.  He loves you with his entire being.   He loves everything about you.  He knows your deepest darkest secrets and He came to save your life.   He’s alive and He wants to save you from your sins.

 

Do you want accept Jesus Christ in your life today?

Missing the Mark

The first mention of missing the mark, as the term is used in Judges 20:16 – 16 Among all this people were seven hundred select men who were left-handed; every one could sling a stone at a hair’s breadth and not miss. – This stone was probably used in a sling shot hence the word sling.  At a hair’s breadth means that their target was very small and very thin, and they did not miss the mark.

There are other words for sin or missing the mark in the Bible but I am not going to go into them.  Using a sling shot or a bow and arrow are practically the same thing.  When I was in high school I took a course in Archery, and when I took the course, I failed miserably.  Failure is also another word for sin.  I would point the arrow toward the target and it would never end up right on course with precision.  These skillfull people who used sling-shots were able to get it on target and right on the bulls eye.  But for that they had to have good hand and eye coordination, a good stance and good follow through, and most importantly that had to have faith that they could, with God’s help hit the target much like David did.

In our Christian walk we are often at a place where we seem to struggle, and sometimes we feel like no one understands and sometimes we may feel like God doesn’t listen or hear.  It is those times when we have injured our hands or for throwing the stone that we seem to be painfully aware of our injury and how when we once were able to hit the hair’s breadth, that now we may be falling off target.  Maybe it’s not your hands, but maybe it’s your eyes.  You can’t see things the way you used to and everything is blurred around you, and of course if you can’t see then everything else around you is going to get blurred and out of focus and you’ll miss your shot.

I remember one time I broke my left hand and it was fractured and it was hurt, and nobody likes to have a broken bone.  A broken bone is no fun.  When you’re older it is especially not any fun.  It takes patience, treatment and rest to be able to recover, and sometimes we get so anxious we don’t want to rest.  We want everything to be on target all the time and that can lead us to a very dangerous place thinking that we can make every shot every time.  We must understand that everyone is in training to receive the prize, and we must endure through the difficult process.

There was a news story recently about a woman who went hiking and her leg came off for about four days she prayed to God (I don’t know if she was Christian or not) but Elohim (Our God the Creator) heard her prayer and her leg was miraculously attached to her in the hospital and she said “Once this is over I’m going to go hiking again”.  What happened is that she kept her eyes on her dream.

We as Christians have dreams – to go to Heaven, and to meet Jesus and to be seated in Heavenly Places.  We have dreams to preach the Gospel to a lost and dying world. So what happens when we miss the mark.  Is it something that is going to take us away from our dream?  Not if we truly regret what we have done and we turn to God.  We shouldn’t feel condemned by what we’ve done and we shouldn’t be discouraged.

Hebrews 11 talks about all the heroes of faith and how they looked for a city whose builder and Maker is God.

30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. 31 By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies [t]in peace.

We may have walls in our life that are causing us to sin, and those walls need to be broken down so that God can come in and take over.  Just because we miss the mark sometimes whatever the reason does it mean that God is not a good God or that God is not a God of love?  God is definitely good and God is a God of love and He longs to restore our aching and broken hearts each time we fall down and stumble.  He wants to help us where we are struggling, but we are so focused on missing the mark that we forget to see what is the real reason behind the faith.  The real reason behind the faith is to see Jesus the King and Mighty Ruler as the Prince of Peace who lives and reigns in our hearts.  We can’t see with our own eyes how many lives we have affected with our presence in them.  We have no idea.  Only God knows how many lives we have touched and how many broken hearts He has used us to touch and how many times people were in desperation and He used you to turn to them and provide them comfort.

Some people think that there is some big “purpose” or big “destiny” to you being born, and there is definitely a plan for your life which is for good and to give a future and a hope, but if we get so caught up in “finishing” or work or calling or purpose on earth,that if God forbid something happens before that time, then we still have purpose by the smile we put on someone’s face and kind words, and a friendly voice. So friends don’t get discouraged even if you are missing the mark sometimes because God knows how many lives you’ve touched and God sees what’s bigger and better than anything the world can see or even people closest to us can see.  God knows that He has placed us as seeds of love and whenever we put our heart on the line at the risk of getting hurt in order to restore love to a lost and dying world, then God sees that and it puts a smile on His face.  Don’t be discouraged dear friends.  Even in the darkest moments of our lives, through all the tears, and sleepless nights, God is still by our side, and even though it may seem that darkness is all around us, we have a light on the inside of us that keeps on burning and shining and being bright.

 

 

A little bit of the book of Jonah in all of us

I don’t know about you all, but I’ve been finding a little bit of Jonah in myself.  I think sometimes we Christians can behave a lot like Jonah given our circumstances.

Jonah’s Disobedience

1 The word of the Lord came to Jonah the son of Amittai saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh the great city and cry against it, for their wickedness has come up before Me.” But Jonah rose up to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. So he went down to Joppa, found a ship which was going to Tarshish, paid the fare and went down into it to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.

Interestingly enough, I found this passage title to be “Disobedience”.  That is the beginning of all of our problems.  When God initially tells us not to do something, and we don’t listen.  Unforgiveness is an area where we can be disobedient to the Lord.  Also doing all the little things He tells us not to do can be considered being disobedient to the Lord.  Some Christians know they are not supposed to do things like drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, go to nightclubs, watch soap operas, but they do it anyway because something inside our carnal nature just wants to rebel.  It’s in all of us.  The amazing thing about Jonah is that he had the Presence of the Lord with him, and then he decided to leave and turn away.  Some of us may be experiencing great things in the Presence of the Lord in our church and when times get tough we may be tempted to pull away.

The Lord hurled a great wind on the sea and there was a great storm on the sea so that the ship was about to [a]break up. Then the sailors became afraid and every man cried to his god, and they threw the [b]cargo which was in the ship into the sea to lighten it [c]for them. But Jonah had gone below into the hold of the ship, lain down and fallen sound asleep. So the captain approached him and said, “How is it that you are sleeping? Get up, call on your god. Perhaps your god will be concerned about us so that we will not perish.”

Doesn’t this story sound familiar?  This is exactly what happened with Jesus on the boat.  The storm was raging and He was still asleep.  There must be something about security in the Lord that allows you to fall asleep during the worst of circumstances.  I remember when Hurricane Ike hit Houston.  It was pummeling the roofs, and it was one of the worst ones we’ve had that caused a lot of damage, but it wasn’t as bad as Katrina.  Well I was rattled by the storm, and my dad, who was and is an unbeliever slept through it.  If an unbeliever can do that, how much more can we who have faith sleep through the literal storms, and the symbolic storms in our life.  It’s easy when things are going well.  But when things are hard it’s hard to have that faith that everything is going to turn out for good.  Jonah was even out of the Presence of the Lord, which is why he was getting them into trouble.  Sometimes when we are disobedient, we can cause the ship of local church to be in turmoil.  It is also a reminder that if you’re considering switching churches, then, what can happen, when you do.

Each man said to his mate, “Come, let us cast lots so we may [d]learn on whose account this calamity has struck us.” So they cast lots and the lot fell on Jonah. Then they said to him, “ Tell us, now! On whose account has this calamity struck us? What is your occupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? From what people are you?” He said to them, “I am a Hebrew, and I fear the Lord God of heaven who made the sea and the dry land.”

10 Then the men became extremely frightened and they said to him, “[e]How could you do this?” For the men knew that he was fleeing from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them. 11 So they said to him, “What should we do to you that the sea may become calm [f]for us?”—for the sea was becoming increasingly stormy. 12 He said to them, “Pick me up and throw me into the sea. Then the sea will become calm [g]for you, for I know that on account of me this great storm has come upon you.” 13 However, the men [h]rowed desperately to return to land but they could not, for the sea was becoming even stormier against them. 14 Then they called on the Lord and said, “We earnestly pray, O Lord, do not let us perish on account of this man’s life and do not put innocent blood on us; for You, O Lord, have done as You have pleased.”

15 So they picked up Jonah, threw him into the sea, and the sea stopped its raging. 16 Then the men feared the Lord greatly, and they offered a sacrifice to the Lord and made vows.

So here Jonah makes his declaration that he is the reason that they are in the boat because he fled from the Presence of the Lord.  This is what Adam and Eve did as well.  When we have that Presence of the Lord upon our lives (which comes through living a repentant life and worship and the Truth of God’s Word) we shouldn’t leave it at any cost.  We shouldn’t let our unforgiveness be an issue and we should choose to let our anger, bitterness, resentment, and all the things in our heart that are keeping us away from God, not be an issue in our lives anymore.

17 [i]And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the stomach of the fish three days and three nights.

This is the stomach of the fish that Jonah was in.  Jonah was in the fish three days and three nights.  Jesus was in the tomb three days and three nights and then He was and is risen.  Sometimes we feel like we are dead and stuck, and we are in the same place.  We don’t think that we are going to get out of it, and then a miracle happens. But during those times we cry out in distress and in pain so that we can see a deliverance from our problems.

[a]Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the stomach of the fish, and he said,

“I called out of my distress to the Lord,

And He answered me.

I cried for help from the [b]depth of Sheol;

You heard my voice.

“For You had cast me into the deep,

Into the heart of the seas,

And the current [c]engulfed me.

All Your breakers and billows passed over me.

“So I said, ‘I have been expelled from [d]Your sight.

Nevertheless I will look again toward Your holy temple.’

“ Water encompassed me to the [e]point of death.

The great deep [f]engulfed me,

Weeds were wrapped around my head.

“I descended to the roots of the mountains.

The earth with its bars was around me forever,

But You have brought up my life from [g]the pit, O Lord my God.

“While [h]I was fainting away,

I remembered the Lord,

And my prayer came to You,

Into Your holy temple.

“Those who regard [i]vain idols

Forsake their faithfulness,

But I will sacrifice to You

With the voice of thanksgiving.

That which I have vowed I will pay.

Salvation is from the Lord.”

10 Then the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah up onto the dry land.

Look at the prayer that Jonah made.  He said what misery that he was in and he knew the Lord’s power.  That’s a key to answered prayer.  To recognize and be truthful about your situation.  He also offered up thanksgiving, which some people say should be at the beginning but it actually takes place at the end. I am not sure if Nineveh or Tarshish is the place that Jonah is talking about in his prayers but I am assuming it is Nineveh.  This place that Jonah hated so much was full of idols according to him.  Sometimes we get caught up in a place that is full of idols.  We just want to see them leave and we get so bitter and angry even in our prayers, that we don’t see that God still loves them. Sometimes we ourselves get caught up in our own idols

Nineveh Repents

3 Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh the great city and proclaim to it the proclamation which I am going to tell you.” So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was [a]an exceedingly great city, a three days’ walk. Then Jonah began to go through the city one day’s walk; and he cried out and said, “Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown.”

Then the people of Nineveh believed in God; and they called a fast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them. When the word reached the king of Nineveh, he arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, covered himself with sackcloth and sat on the [b]ashes. He issued a proclamation and it said, “In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let man, beast, herd, or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water. But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth; and let [c]men call on God earnestly that each may turn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in [d]his hands. Who knows, God may turn and relent and withdraw His burning anger so that we will not perish.”

10 When God saw their deeds, that they turned from their wicked way, then God relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would [e]bring upon them. And He did not do it.

Sometimes we are so on top of the world and that we have achieved to new levels and new heights and we think we are great and may have taken God for granted not realizing how much we need Him and how much we have drifted away and that is when we become overthrown.  Then we begin to believe in God, and we may go through periods where even food is not as important as God and we cry out.  If you’ve never lived a day where you are so hungry, then you really don’t know what it is like to be fasting.  The king said, “Do not let beast, herd, or flock taste a thing.  Do not let them eat or drink water.”    Can you imagine that – not being able to eat or drink water.  It’s almost like having the stomach flu, but this didn’t happen by chance, it was voluntary.  Can you imagine the suffering. They repented by fasting and turning from their wicked way, which God changed His mind about them.

Jonah’s Displeasure Rebuked

4 But it greatly displeased Jonah and he became angry. He prayed to the Lord and said, “Please Lord, was not this [a]what I said while I was still in my own country? Therefore [b]in order to forestall this I fled to Tarshish, for I knew that You are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, and one who relents concerning calamity. Therefore now, O Lord, please take my [c]life from me, for death is better to me than life.” The Lord said, “Do you have good reason to be angry?”

So then Jonah, was like – “I had to go through all that for nothing – for no good reason.  I had known as much to begin with, and I had to go through all that.  It wasn’t worth it.  It’s better off if I died”  God was not pleased with Jonah’s attitude.  God was looking for a good reason to be angry.  In his mind he was thinking what he went through would have been better off if they hadn’t repented.  If they had just stayed the way they were.

Then Jonah went out from the city and sat east of [d]it. There he made a shelter for himself and sat under it in the shade until he could see what would happen in the city. So the Lord God appointed a [e]plant and it grew up over Jonah to be a shade over his head to deliver him from his discomfort. And Jonah was [f]extremely happy about the [g]plant. But God appointed a worm when dawn came the next day and it attacked the plant and it withered. When the sun came up God appointed a scorching east wind, and the sun beat down on Jonah’s head so that he became faint and begged with all his soul to die, saying, “ Death is better to me than life.”

Sometimes we get so stressed out by different things and different things come our way and we just don’t know how to handle it.  Sometimes we find little satisfaction in temporal things for comfort but when they are not working we get discouraged.  Sometimes we like our car so much and it gives us joy and freedom and then it gets totalled then we get so discouraged.   Sometimes God provides shade, but then He removes it too.  Don’t you think Jonah would have gotten out of his predicament if He said a prayer like “Thank You Lord for the awesome sun who shines upon the heat during the day.  Great is the Lord who created the sun, and deliver me from this heat.”  We might tend to think that it is like the Amalekites, or the devil that attacks us at our weakest, but sometimes it could be God trying to teach us a lesson.  We don’t rely upon God and his goodness and what he has done for us.  Jonah had been rescued out of the fish.  That was a big deal!!!  Imagine just all no air and you can’t breathe, but then you get delivered and don’t you believe that the God who did before can do it again.  We too often become like Jonah.  God used this reminder to show Jonah to sympathize with what the Ninevites were going thorugh.

Then God said to Jonah, “Do you have good reason to be angry about the plant?” And he said, “I have good reason to be angry, even to death.” 10 Then the Lord said, “You had compassion on the plant for which you did not work and which you did not cause to grow, which [h]came up overnight and perished [i]overnight. 11 Should I not have compassion on Nineveh, the great city in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know the difference between their right and left hand, as well as many animals?”

The lesson that God was trying to teach Jonah and all of us is compassion.  There are so many lessons in this book of Jonah.  When a city comes to repentance, God spares the city.  When we come into repentance God spares our lives.  This shows the mercy of God and His immense compassion.  We often see God in the Old Testament as wrathful and strict and showing Judgment, but in this example it shows us that He is still merciful and kind and loving.  That He loves us immensely, and He wants to show us compassion.  Sometimes when we are angry with someone and we can’t seem to see the big picture and the whole situation God uses circumstances and speaks to us regarding certain issues so that we can live out the characters He wants to see us develop.

 

 

Turn your sin into sing

Many times we are bombarded with living up to a perfect standard in Christ because we are called to be like Him.  Sometimes even the word repentance can be scary because even though it means to change your mind some people have made you think that you can lose the hedge of protection or the covering for sin or even that you might lose your salvation if you sin.  But the purpose of repentance is not to make you afraid and terrified of God so much that you cannot rest or trust in Him because you think or going to end up in a dark place or that He is going take you and tear you to shreds unless you repent.  God is a loving God and He wants you to turn your sin into singing.

If you are addicted to alcohol then He wants you to recover and be of support to people struggling with the same issue.  If you are anxious and worried and afraid He wants you turn around and comfort people who are also anxious, worried, and afraid because He knows that we have nothing to fear because He is always by our side.  Whatever your sin may be, great or small, He has already accounted for it in His provision.  It is part of His accounting system.  Like in accounting you measure the ledger by the money going out and the money coming in, He knows that His blood is on the other side of the scale of Justice to account for the sin that we have made, and for that we can rejoice.  We can also rejoice in knowing that as it says in Psalm 121 He is our Protector.  There is nothing that can change Him from who He is and it is no matter what you do it can’t change who He is.  He is our Redeemer as well as our Protector and His will is always for own best interest.  Of course there are things that we probably shouldn’t be doing because they are harmful to ourselves and others, but we don’t have to live with guilt and anxiety because of these things.  It is by His grace and His perfect measure of peace and mercy that all things work together to His divine plan and that His mercy is forever as it says in Psalm 136 – His steadfast love endures forever –

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods,
for his steadfast love endures forever.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords,
for his steadfast love endures forever;

to him who alone does great wonders,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
to him who by understanding made the heavens,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
to him who spread out the earth above the waters,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
to him who made the great lights,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
the sun to rule over the day,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
the moon and stars to rule over the night,
for his steadfast love endures forever;

10 to him who struck down the firstborn of Egypt,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
11 and brought Israel out from among them,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
12 with a strong hand and an outstretched arm,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
13 to him who divided the Red Sea in two,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
14 and made Israel pass through the midst of it,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
15 but overthrew[a] Pharaoh and his host in the Red Sea,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
16 to him who led his people through the wilderness,
for his steadfast love endures forever;

17 to him who struck down great kings,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
18 and killed mighty kings,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
19 Sihon, king of the Amorites,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
20 and Og, king of Bashan,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
21 and gave their land as a heritage,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
22 a heritage to Israel his servant,
for his steadfast love endures forever.

23 It is he who remembered us in our low estate,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
24 and rescued us from our foes,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
25 he who gives food to all flesh,
for his steadfast love endures forever.

26 Give thanks to the God of heaven,
for his steadfast love endures forever.

In this passage it means that His steadfast love and His mercy are the same thing.  His all encompassing everlasting promising love of His will be with us always no matter what we do.

The question is once you realize that He is your Redeemer or Protector or Healer or Provider and some circumstance comes to challenge that will you still believe that is who He is?  It is that in which He is testing you on.  He is not testing you on if you are not perfect or if you lie sometimes or get angry sometimes or want to scream at the telemarketers or do things that just don’t seem like what you are supposed to be doing, will you still trust that He is your Redeemer and that He will always be your Redeemer.  The problem is that in most of these Attributes of God we don’t seem to have a problem with Him, but we often have a problem with Him being a Judge, but He judges even on the basis of the balance of what is right and wrong knowing that we have a Mighty Counselor or Advocate in Jesus Christ and that His blood washes us away from sin.

I think most of the Church has gotten off track on repentance, which is best defined as a transition from being what was once a caterpillar going into the cocoon and turning into a butterfly.  Some of us are still in the cocoon wondering when we are going to get out, but God knows when we are ready, but we must never lose our faith in the cocoon which is giving us wings so that we can fly high and soar.  Sometimes we are dismayed by all the things around us and all the challenges around us that we begin to question who Jesus is and how much He actually loves us and is Jealous for us and wants us to “change our minds about Him” – we must remember that He is Jealous.

Revelation 2 says –

2 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands.

 “‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false.I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.  He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’

In this context the word repent means to change your mind about Christ, which is the real essence of the verse because if you look at it – they hated the deeds of the evildoers so they were not doing evil, but they had turned their minds against Christ and did not have the love that once had.  I am guessing this was because of offense, strife, and bitterness which had gotten into their hearts.  They became hard hearted toward Christ and had to turn to Him.

Revelation 2:12-17 says

To the Church in Pergamum

12 “And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write: ‘The words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword.

13 “‘I know where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is. Yet you hold fast my name, and you did notdeny my faith[b] even in the days of Antipas my faithful witness, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells. 14 But I have a few things against you: you have some there who hold the teaching ofBalaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, so that they might eat food sacrificed to idols and practice sexual immorality. 15 So also you have some who hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans. 16 Therefore repent. If not, I will come to you soon and war against them with the sword of my mouth. 17  He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.To the one who conquers I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.’

I am not going into all the verses in Revelation to define the Word repent, in all these cases, but in this context it seems that Jesus is grieved by the eating of food sacrificed to idols and of fornication, and there is a deep history behind these verses that goes in with the iniquity and injustice done by these verses.

Even though we have the Blood of Jesus as our standard and measuring device by which to measure all things as they pertain to Christ, and in regard to sin, we must not let us let anyone take away from the fact that Jesus is Judge and Redeemer at the same time.  He judges injustice, but He redeems at the same time.  It is part of His divine nature to make the vessel in whichever way He created, and He prefers to use cracked pots instead of self-righteous perfect vessels.  He knows that through our weaknesses and failures and sins and iniquities that there is a prize of an upward calling, a glorious manifestation of us seated with Christ in heavenly places, but if we are so bogged down and beating ourselves up for our sins or not being able to clearly identify with Him in all His attributes.  We are called to be Christ-like, but can we really be 100% Christlike – He is our Redeemer, can we be a redeemer as well, I think not!  There is only one Redeemer and that’s Him, and there’s only One Judge and that’s Him, and in Him everything is made Righteous so to even attain such a glorious calling seems to be an unattainable aspiration. So what do we do?  We accept that we in ourselves are imperfect and that we must stop trying to work in our selves to earn a place in God’s respect, and just accept that we are lost and helpless and we need a Savior, and that the very sin that we commit is going to turn into beauty for someone else.

I have done things before I was Christian which I regret dearly, and I now can thank God that He has changed me, but I still am a work in progress and sure there are things I don’t understand right now like Bible Prophecy, but that doesn’t change the fact that God is who He says He is.  Sometimes as I read on one blogpost, we read the Bible and think it is about us, but it is not – it is all about Him, and everything in the world is about Him, and it is His story, so we should rejoice in that fact.  We don’t see Him as Healer because we haven’t identified with Him as that – that takes a personal revelation from Him, that comes from Him.

13 When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”

14 So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.

15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”

16 Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed[d] in heaven.”

This rock – means firmness and strength of a man’s soul –

Blue Letter Bible. “Dictionary and Word Search for petra (Strong’s 4073)“. Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2012. 2 May 2012. < http:// www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?
Strongs=G4073&t=KJV >

Jesus changed Simon’s name to mean firmness and strength and do you know why?  He would have to have this identity because Jesus knew that Peter would deny Him three times, and He knew that while he professed in his own strength to have enough courage and steadiness not to deny Christ, He in the end would be turned away from Christ.  So in this revelation of Christ as the Son of the living God, His identity is revealed to Peter.  So has the identity of Christ as your Redeemer been revealed to you?  Has the identity of Christ as your Savior been revealed to you?  Only the Father will be able to reveal this to you.  But if you seek it out in His Word, it can clearly be seen.  So what attribute of God has been revealed to you and do you still hold on to that promise?  Will you when you sin instead of mourning and grieving over your sin, will you make it an opportunity to sing?

Yes God is Holy, but to call ourselves unholy will grieve the Holy Spirit and wreck havoc to us because it is by faith that we are made holy, we are to call things that are not as though they are and in this we can find perfect peace.  But until we come complete revelation of Him as our Redeemer we will be wrestling with our sins, guilt, shame, fear, and pain, until we realize that Jesus has came and done it once and for all!!!