ASSURANCES

DO I REALLY “KNOW?”

…FATHER, I come to You ready for You to search me. Scripture says that I can “know” that I have eternal life.

For years now I’ve been settled believing I “know.” But is that because I’ve grown up in the church? The church says I’m supposed to possess the faith to believe Scripture. Do I believe I have eternal life because Scriptures says I should believe it? Are my beliefs just facts in my head with no HOLY SPIRIT influencing my actions?

There is a reason why You include in Your Word that creatures are not to judge (Matt 7:1) and it is because we are not capable of doing it correctly. That fact is brought home by Your words in Isaiah. JESUS is both Your divine Son and the Son of Man; in Isaiah 11:3 You are speaking of Him as the Son of Man. “…He will not judge by what His eyes see, Nor make a decision by what His ears hear;” (NASB).

I am not capable of making correct decisions on my own. With just my thinking I cannot make the decision that I “know” I have an eternal relationship with You. For my heart is deceitful and tells me lies (Jer 17:9). No, I require the HOLY SPIRIT to assure me that I’m going to live with You forever.

FATHER, take the literature I’ve collected for blogging this next year and allow me to wait in Your presence until You provide answers to the many questions written there. Send Yourself to me through Your SPIRIT that I may experience more and more assurances that I am bound for heaven when I die.

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PRELUDE TO PRAISE

Prayer Facts:

“It is in prayer that we hold up our desire to the light of God’s Holy Will, that our motives are tested, and proof given whether we ask indeed in the name of Jesus, and only for the glory of God.” Andrew Murray (ref#19, ELEVENTH LESSON),

Reasons for Waiting for GOD:

Because in CHRIST all the treasures of divine wisdom and spiritual knowledge and enlightenment are stored up and lie hidden (Col 2:3), I will wait for You.

Because all nations shall fall down before Your Son and serve Him (Ps 72:11), I will wait for You.

Read Through the Bible in a Year: Dec 30th -31st

Dec 30   Ps 145-146

Dec 31    Ps 147-148

SUPPLICATION

GENERAL TRIBULATION

[We all can think of a Christian sister or brother experiencing so much affliction they may not be able to pray for themselves. Here’s an opportunity to pray for them. Fill their name in the blanks.]

REASONS FOR AFFLICTION – SCOURING AWAY EVIL

…FATHER, You are presently sustaining ____ with the bread of adversity and the water of affliction (Isa 30:20). It makes (him/her), LORD, weep with grief (Ps 119:28). But sometimes it takes a painful experience to make us draw closer to You. Pain that hurts has the ability to chase evil from our hearts (Prov 20:30). Your sharp reproofs that sting our conscience scours away evil (ref#16, [Prov 20:30]).

May ____ understand the good that comes out of humility caused by affliction, yet FATHER, in Your discipline do not give (him/her) over to (his/her) enemy (Ps 31:8). You tell (him/her) You will not hide Yourself when You afflict (him/her) (Isa 30:20). You will cause (him/her) to hear You saying, “This is the way, walk in it”, when (he/she) turns to the right or to the left (Isa 30:21).

FATHER, in Your time, You will draw (him/her) out of the net You have caused (his/her) enemy to lay for (him/her); therefore, gladly into Your hands I commit ____’s spirit (Ps 31:4-5). Make (him/her) be glad and rejoice in Your mercy and steadfast love—because You have seen (his/her) affliction—because You have taken note of (his/her) distresses—because You will never give (him/her) into the hand of the enemy (Ps 31:7-8).

THANKSGIVING

“God is not a human being, that he should lie, or a mortal, that he should change his mind. Has he promised, and will he not do it? Has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it” (Num 23:19 NRSV)?

“I made the earth, and created humankind upon it; it was my hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their host” (Isa 45:12 NRSV).

“God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them” (Rev 21:3 NLT).

“It is good to give thanks to the Lord, And to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; To declare Your lovingkindness in the morning, And Your faithfulness every night, (Ps 92:1-2 NKJV).

“…I will sing of Your power; Yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; For You have been my defense And refuge in the day of my trouble. To You, O my Strength, I will sing praises; For God is my defense, My God of mercy” (Ps 59:16-17 NKJV).

“…Nothing is too difficult for You, who shows lovingkindness to thousands, but repays the iniquity of fathers into the bosom of their children after them, O great and mighty God. The Lord of hosts is His name; great in counsel and mighty in deed, whose eyes are open to all the ways of the sons of men, giving to everyone according to his ways and according to the fruit of his deeds;” (Jer 32:17-19 NASU).

“’It is He who changes the times and the epochs; He removes kings and establishes kings; He gives wisdom to wise men And knowledge to men of understanding. ‘It is He who reveals the profound and hidden things; He knows what is in the darkness, And the light dwells with Him” (Dan 2:21-22 NASU).

 “to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, be the glory forever. Amen” (Rom 16:27 NASU).

CONFESSION

REASONS FOR DISOBEDIENCE – A SPIRIT CHECK

…FATHER, out of my sin nature that wants only to act like JESUS comes pernicious reasonings and evil intentions (Matt 15:19). FATHER, point out my resistance toward You through the following questions:

  • Am I pleased or troubled about situations?       Does my countenance depend on my comfort in the situation or do I forget about assessing my feelings and simply obey CHRIST (ref#76, p89)?
  • Do I provide for myself instead of letting CHRIST supply my needs? Do I control, rule, serve and love myself and not turn to CHRIST for strength (ref#76, p91)?
  • Do I judge myself? Do I settle in despondency dwelling on my faults or believe I am doing well and become puffed up (ref#76, p85)?
  • Am I “an evangelical hypocrite who sins more safely because grace abounds, who tells his lusts that Christ’s blood cleanseth them, who reasons that God cannot cast him into hell, for he is saved, who loves evangelical preaching, churches, Christians, but lives unholily” The Valley of Vision (ref#76, p72)?

O FATHER, my “every sense, member, faculty, affection is a snare to me”The Valley of Vision (ref#76, p74). Sin is my downfall (Ezek 18:30) and “my greatest snare is myself” The Valley of Vision (ref#76, p74).

Thank You for revealing the rebellion lurking in my members. Thank You for cleansing me from these hidden faults as I admit to them. I don’t want sin to control me (Ps 19:12,13). Through this confession turn my face toward You once again so that I may express extravagant love to You.

ADORATION

Chord Progression:  (C  F/C  Dm6  C/E)  (C  F6  G7  C)

YOUR THRONE, O GOD, IS FOREVER

“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; the scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom” (Ps 45:6 AMP). “…It is you who has made the heavens and the earth by your great power and…outstretched arm!…” (Jer 32:17 NRSV).

 

“…’You, LORD, in the beginning

laid the foundations of the earth,

And the heavens are the work of Your hands” (Heb 1:10 NKJV).

“…they will all grow old like a garment;” (Heb 1:11 NKJV).

 

“…But You are the same,

And Your years will not fail’” (Heb 1:12 NKJV).

“…You, O Lord, remain and reign forever;

Your throne endures from generation to [all] generations” (Lam 5:19 AMP).

 

“You show steadfast love…

O great and mighty God whose name is the LORD of hosts,” (Jer 32:18 NRSV).

“great in counsel and mighty in deed;…” (Jer 32:19 NRSV).

“…Nothing is too difficult for You,”(Jer 32:17 NASU).

CHRISTMAS POST 2017

CHRISTMAS

The celebration of CHRIST’s birth brings to an end the 1st covenant between GOD and His people—the tiny nation, Israel. No more will sacrificing and rituals be the way to GOD (Luke 2:32,34-35). No more can Israel rest on the fact that they are heirs of Abraham and thus GOD’s people (Luke 3:8-9).

John the Baptist first announces the 2nd covenant: He proclaims a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins instead of animal sacrifices (Luke 3:3). JESUS was about to challenge all men, Jew as well as Gentile.

One thing that stands out in reading the four Gospels is how the actions of JESUS create a visible distinction between people whose hearts are hard toward him (chaff) or receptive toward Him (wheat). CHRIST shook people up; they either loved or hated Him!

John the Baptist said of Him, “…He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire” (Luke 3:16-17 ESV).

“Whether being baptized ‘with the Holy Spirit and fire’ will be positive (involving the coming of the purifying fire of the Spirit at Pentecost, Acts 1:8; 2:3) or negative (involving the divine judgment of fire; Luke 9:54;12:49;17:29) depends on the response of the individual person” (ref#125, p1953, [Luke 3:16]).

In our day JESUS speaks just as defining-ly through the written Word. His Presence now with us demands a response. No more assuming we are GOD’s people.

FATHER, am I wheat or chaff? If I’m ever to rest in peace I must know.

Beginning in 2018 this blog plans to address the topic of assurances of salvation. It will continually ask the question, “Am I going to heaven?”

As I celebrate CHRIST’s birth today, I thank Him for coming to earth not only to provide a way of everlasting life for me but also that I might know for sure NOW whether or not I have everlasting life.

JESUS has come. His presence divides. Am I chaff or wheat?

PRELUDE TO PRAYER

Prayer Facts:

“As long as in prayer we just pour out our hearts in a multitude of petitions, without taking time to see whether every petition is sent with the purpose and expectation of getting an answer, not many will reach the mark” Andrew Murray (ref#19, TENTH LESSON).

Reasons for Waiting for GOD:

Because Your testimonies are wonderful far exceeding anything conceived by man (Ps 119:129), I will wait for You.

Because You are good and ready to forgive, and abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You (Ps 86:5), I will wait for You.

Read Through the Bible in a Year: Dec 23rd – 29th

Dec 23    Ps 125-126

Dec 24    Ps 127-128

Dec 25    Ps 129-130

Dec 26    Ps 131,133

Dec 27    Ps 134,136

Dec 28    Ps 137-138

Dec 29    Ps 139, 141

SUPPLICATION

NON CHRISTIAN Resisters

[We all have friends and family that do not want anything to do with Christianity so it is up to us to pray for their salvation. Here’s an opportunity to pray for them. Fill their name in the blanks.]

BRING CALAMITY

O LORD, Your children will walk in Your statues and they will be careful to obey Your rules when You “cause” them to do so (Ezek 36:27). I have many friends and family that know about You but still order their own lives. I pray that You do what is needed to cause them to abandon their own efforts to rule themselves.

Did not Your own Son learn obedience by suffering (Heb 2:10). Do You not say, “Spiritually prosperous are the destitute and helpless…” (ref #37, p9, [Matt 5:3])? ____ will never look for You unless You bring calamities that will cause (him/her) to question ruling (his/her) own life. Avert (him/her), making (him/her) realize that (he/she) is a sinner by nature (Matt 9:13), and not righteous in character (Mark 2:17). Exhaust (him/her) in (his/her) troubles, make (him/her) wander aimlessly so that (he/she) throws (himself/herself) to the ground in an utterly prostrate condition as a sheep not having a shepherd (Matt 9:36).

I pray for sorrow that leads to salvation—a sorrow that stirs up ____’s heart so (he/she) cannot rest until (he/she) finds pardon through Your mercy (2 Cor 7:10). My desire is that (he/she) turn to You in a wind-blown, out-of-control situation and find (his/her) heart regretful of (his/her) way and wishing to change it (2 Cor 7:9).

FATHER, cause ____ to labor through (his/her) days in vain. Turn (him/her) to see it is CHRIST who will cause (him/her) to cease from such useless labor.   CHRIST will take away (his/her) burdens and refresh (him/her) with rest (Matt 11:29).

You cause grief, but You will have compassion according to the abundance of Your steadfast love; for You do not willingly afflict or grieve (Lam 3:32-33). Every languishing soul You will replenish (Jer 31:25).

When ____’s pride is shattered and (he/she) is ready for love, (he/she) will not escape Your notice, will (he/she) (Ps 51:17)? O LORD, make it so that in (his/her) distress (he/she) seeks You, for You will be found (2 Chron 15:4). I pray all this to You—a faithful GOD (Ps 145:13).

THANKSGIVING

Chord Progression:  (C  Dm  G7  C)  (Em  Am  Dm  G7)

YOUR TESTIMONIES ARE WONDERFUL

“Your testimonies are wonderful

[far exceeding anything conceived by man];…” (Ps 119:129 AMP).

“Your righteous testimonies are everlasting

and Your decrees are binding to eternity;…” (Ps 119:144 AMP).

 

“Your word is very pure (tried and well refined);…” (Ps 119:140 AMP).

“Your decrees are very trustworthy;…” (Ps 93:5 ESV).

You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness;…” (Heb 1:9 NKJV).

“…holiness befits your house, O Lord, forevermore” (Ps 93:5 ESV).

 

“You are the God Who does wonders;

You have demonstrated Your power among the peoples” (Ps 77:14 AMP).

“For you bless the righteous, O Lord;

you cover him with favor as with a shield” (Ps 5:12 ESV).

 

“You…have led forth…whom You have redeemed;

You have guided them in Your strength…” (Ex 15:13 AMP).

“You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive,

And abundant in mercy to all…who call upon You” (Ps 86:5 NKJV).

 

“Before the mountains were born

Or You gave birth to the earth and the world,

Even from everlasting to everlasting,

You are God” (Ps 90:2 NASU). You are GOD!!