Luke – Chapter 12

Christ Warns About Hypocrisy

Verse 1 – In the meantime, when an innumerable multitude of people had gathered together, so that they trampled one another, He began to say to His disciples first of all, “Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.

Verse 2 – “For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, nor hidden that will not be known.

In the New Testament, yeast is normally a symbol of corruption or evil. Hypocrisy behavior can fool man, but it will eventually be uncovered and made known by God, who is never fooled. I call them “pretenders.” Pretending to be something they are not. They usually expose themselves by what comes out of their mouth.

Verse 3 – “Therefore whatever you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in the ear in inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops.

Verse 4 – “And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.

Verse 5 – “But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!

I believe there is less fear of God these days than any other time in history. People do exactly what they want to do to others without any remorse or fear of the consequences. They just don’t care. They make fun of there being an actual hell, and they make fun of the ones who do believe.

Verse 6 – “Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God.

Verse 7 – “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

Does anyone know the exact number of hairs on your head? God does, so don’t ever underestimate how much He loves you. You are valuable to Him!

Verse 8 – “Also I say to you, whoever confesses Me before men, him the Son of Man also will confess before the angels of God.

Verse 9 – “But he who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God.

How do people deny Christ before men? (1) by hoping no one will think they are a Christian, so that they can fit in with the crowd; (2) by not speaking up for what is right; (3) by being silent about your relationship with God; (4) and by accepting the worldly values and principles. Never, ever, be ashamed of being a Christian, and Jesus will never, ever be ashamed of you!

Verse 10 – “And anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but to him who blasphemies against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven.

According to the parallel passage in Mark 3:28-30, blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is to attribute to Satan the works of God’s Spirit. This is deliberate and ongoing rejection of the Holy Spirit’s work; and if you reject the Holy Spirit’s work, you reject God. This cannot be forgiven.

Verse 11 – “Now when they bring you to the synagogues and magistrates and authorities, do not worry about how or what you should answer, or what you should say.

Verse 12 – “For the Holy spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.”

The promise of the Holy Spirit’s help does not compensate for lack of preparation. In time of need, God will bring His truths to mind, when you know His word. However, He can’t bring anything to mind if you haven’t studied His word in the first place.

Parable of the Rich Fool

Verse 13 – Then one from the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

Verse 14 – But He said to him, “Man, who made Me a judge or an arbitrator over you?”

Verse 15 – And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.”

Verse 16 – Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of  a certain rich man yielded plentifully.

Verse 17 – “And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’

This story is about to show us what greed and covetousness is.

Verse 18 – “So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods.

Verse 19 – ‘And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.” ‘

Verse 20 -“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will these things be which you have provided?

Verse 21 – “So is he who lays up treasures for himself, and is not rich toward God.”

None of us knows whether we will see tomorrow. Wouldn’t it be more practical to spend more time concentrating on where we are going to spend eternity, then gathering wealth to leave behind?

Seek The Kingdom of God

Verse 22 – And He said to His disciples, “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what yo will eat; nor about the body, what you will put on.

Verse 23 – “Life is more than food and the body is more than clothing.

Verse 24 – “Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn, and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds?

Verse 25 – “And which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

Verse 26 – “If you then are not able to do the least, why are you anxious for the rest?

Can we change anything by worrying or being anxious? Jesus is plainly telling His disciples life is so much more than what we eat and what we wear, so quit worrying about small things that they will be provided for. We are to keep our mind stayed on Jesus and He will keep us in perfect peace. Take all your concerns to Him in prayer.

Verse 27 – Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of the these.

Verse 28 – “If then God so clothes the grass, which today is in the field and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will He clothe you, O you of little faith?

Do you see what worrying and anxiety really is? It is a lack of faith in our Creator who promises to provide our every need. Do we trust that His words concerning us is really true? When He says He will supply our needs, He means it! When you doubt, you’ll go without!

Verse 29 – “And do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind.

Verse 30 – “For all things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things.

Verse 31 – “But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you.

Part of seeking God’s kingdom is striving to live by His standards and principles. Christ in a believer’s life, should always be “center focused.” We don’t play around in some areas and then rigid in others.

Years ago, I asked God to show me exactly what it meant to, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these other things will be added unto you. And He did. Attitudes and behaviors had to change towards a lot of areas. We are willing to compromise in too many ares, and that’s not the way it should be. We don’t pick and choose which part of scripture we like and don’t like. When a believer starts to take this Christian walk seriously, “all these other things will be added unto us.”

Verse 32 – “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

It’s foolish not to look for the small things at the hand which freely gives us the greater things.

Verse 33 – “Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail where no thief approaches nor moth destroys.

If our financial goals and possessions hinder us from giving generously, loving others, or serving God, sell what yo must to bring your life into perspective. Wealth on this earth can be stolen or destroyed, but heavenly treasures are eternal secure. Mercy and compassion are matters of the heart.

Verse 34 – “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

We have to start with being honest with ourselves: Are you stingy when it comes to giving to the less fortification? Do you see others needs and are willing to do what you can to help?

James 4:17 – Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.

Verse 35 – “Let your waist be girded and your lamps burning;

Verse 36 – “and you yourselves be like men who wait for their master, when he will return from the wedding, that when he comes and knocks they may open to him immediately.

Verse 37 – “Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes, will find watching. Assuredly, I say to you that he will gird himself and have them sit down to eat, and will come and serve them.

Verse 38 – “And if he should come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants.

Verse 39 – “But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed the house to be broken into.

Verse 40 – “Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.

Are you longing for the return of Christ? Will He find you about the Father’s business, or will He catch you off-guard, concerned with only your life and your agenda?

Verse 41 – Then Peter said to Him, “Lord, do You speak this parable only to us, or to all people?”

Verse 42 – And the Lord said, “Who then is that faithful and wise steward whom his master will make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of food in due season?

Verse 43 – “Blessed is that servant whom the master will find so doing when he comes.

Verse 44 – “Truly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all he has.

Jesus doesn’t answer Peter’s question directly. Instead He says that the ones that He finds faithful will be ruler over all that he has.

Verse 45 – “But if that servant says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying his coming,’ and begins to beat the menservants, and to eat and drink and be drunk,

Verse 46 – “the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.

I believe this is a message for backsliders. Beware of making fun of those who are diligently serving the Lord, as the backslider falls away. They will have their place with the unbelievers.

Verse 47 – “And that servant who knew his master’s will, and did not prepare himself or do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.

Verse 48 – “But he who did not know, yet committed things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For to everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.

The more understanding we have, the more we are responsible for to use effectively for the kingdom. We are not responsible for what we don’t know, but it is our responsibility to seek it out. God expects all His children to learn, study, and seek His will and be obedient to it. When you start getting revelation on the things in scripture, more will be given. It is your responsibility to read scripture and find out what it says and then do it. So please don’t try to convince another that you are a follower of Jesus Christ, and you never go to church or pick up His Word.

The Cost of Discipleship

Verse 49 – “I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!

Verse 50 – “But I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how distressed I am till it is accomplished!

Verse 512 – “Do you suppose that I came to give peace on earth? I tell you, not at all, but rather division.

Verse 52 – “From now on five in one house will be divided: three against two and two against three.

Verse 53 – “Father will be divided against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against her mother in-law.”

Jesus tells His disciples and those listening, “You will go through fiery trials when you become a disciple of Mine.” People will persecute and mock you for your faith. Then Jesus talks about His agony and suffering He calls “His baptism,” because He will be emerged in the world’s sin upon Himself. Then He goes on to tell them that when they become disciples of His, there will be division. There will be some that stand with you and some who will come against because of your faith. It’s not an easy road to walk, but Christianity is the only choice we have if we want an eternity with Jesus. Christ is bigger than anything or anyone that comes against His child. What are we willing to sacrifice to gain eternal life? Sometimes it’s our family.

Verse 54 – Then He said to the multitudes, “When you see a cloud rising out of the west, immediately you say, ‘A shower is coming’; and so it is.

Verse 55 – “And when you  see the south wind blow you say, ‘There will be hot weather’; and there is.

Verse 56 – “Hypocrites! You can discern the face of the sky and of the earth, but how is it you do not discern this time?

Verse 57 – “Yes, and why, even of yourselves, do you not judge what is right?

Verse 58 – “When you go with your adversary to the magistrate, make every effort along the way to settle with him, lest he drag you to the judge, the judge deliver you to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison.

Verse 59 – “I tell you, you shall not depart from there till you have paid the very last mite.”

Just as the multitude Jesus was talking to knew how to tell when rain was approaching or when it was going to be hot, so do we today. But people then didn’t recognize that the Savior of the world had come among them. So is it today; we can predict hurricanes, earthquakes, flooding, and many disasters, but too many are ignoring the “signs of the times.” Jesus is coming back soon and there will still be people who haven’t prepared for that day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Luke – chapter 11

The Lord’s Prayer

Verse 1 – And it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.”

Verse 2 – So He said to them, “When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Verse 3 – Give us this day our daily bread.

Verse 4 – And forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”

First, acknowledge God as your Father and praise Him. Show reverence to God All Mighty. Second, trust His kingdom is coming and will be established on earth as it is in heaven. Third, acknowledge that the Father’s will, will be done, trusting that He is sovereign and knows all things. Fourth, tell Him you trust Him to supply your daily needs, that’s a promise from Him. Fifth, ask Him to forgive you, as you forgive others who have wronged you. Release them for your own peace of mind. And sixth, the Lord tempts no one with evil, but He does test us. So ask Him to help you with the testing and trials you go through in life.

The Bible says in James 4:7 – Submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. The key is to “submit to God,” and then resist the temptations of the devil, and he will flee!

Verse 5 – And He said to them, “Which of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves;

Verse 6 – ‘for a friend of mine has come to me on his journey, and I have nothing to set before him’;

Verse 7 – “and he will answer from within and say, “Do not trouble me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give to you’?

Verse 8 – “I say to you, though he will not rise and give to him because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will rise and give him as many as he needs.

This story always bothered me, because it gives the impression that if we aggravate God long enough, He will give us what we want. I always thought about the guy banging on someone’s door late at night too, how rude that would be. I missed the point completely. The point is to pray bold and persistent prayers. Unlike the reluctant homeowner, our loving God who cares for His children will respond generously.

Verse 9 – “And I say to you, ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.

Verse 10 – “For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.

Asking, seeking, and knocking reflects the aspects of prayer. Prayers are not always answered in the way we want them though. Prayers will be answered in God’s timing and according to God’s will. The Father knows best and works all things out for our good.

Parable of the Good Father

Verse 11 – “If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish?

Verse 12 – “Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?

No loving father would give their child a stone, serpent, or scorpion in place of fish, bread, or an egg. When we pray for our daily provisions, our loving Father provides.

Verse 13 – “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”

This verse goes much deeper than just asking for daily provisions. If you are born-again, then you have the gift of the Holy Spirit living on the inside of you. So if you seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, all these other things, provisions, will be added unto you. By seeking the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, you will know God’s will for your life and will be given revelations on how to conduct your life.

Christ Heals the Demonic

Verse 14 – And He was casting out a demon, and it was mute. So it was, when the demon had gone out, that the mute spoke; and the multitudes marveled.

Verse 15 – But some of them said, “He casts out demons by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons.”

Verse 16 – And others, testing Him, sought from Him a sign from heaven.

Verse 17 – But He, knowing their thoughts, said to them: “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and a house divided against a house falls.

Verse 18 – “If Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? Because you say I cast out demons by Beelzebub.

Verse 19 – “And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges.

It was total nonsense to think that Satan would drive out his own demons from his own kingdom. These people hated Jesus so much that they were blinded in seeing the power of God.

Verse 20 – “But if I cast out demons with the finger of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you.

Verse 21 – “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are in peace.

Verse 22 – “But when a stronger than he comes upon him and overcomes him, he takes from him all his armor in which he trusted, and divides his spoils.

The implication is that Jesus being stronger than Satan, was in the process of disarming him.

Verse 23 – “He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters.

There is no neutral ground. If you are not actively for Jesus, you are against Him. A lot of people think there are “grey” areas when it comes to the ways of God, but I can’t find any in scripture.

Verse 24 – “When an unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’

Verse 25 – “And when he comes, he finds it swept and put in order.

Verse 26 – “Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first.”

Jesus was illustrating an unfortunate human tendency – our desire to reform, often doesn’t last long. Unless Christ enters by faith and dwells in the person, nothing will prevent evil spirits from entering that person again and bring more evil with them. Then the person becomes worse than they were initially.

Verse 27 – And it happened, as He spoke these things, that a certain woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!”

Verse 28 – But He said, “More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!”

Jesus stated that a person who hears God’s word and acts upon it in faith is even more blessed than anyone who has mere family ties to Him. A person’s response to God’s word followed by obedience, is more important than who our ancestors were.

Christ’s Only Sign is Jonah

Verse 29 – And while the crowds were thickly gathered, He began to say, “This is an evil generation. It seeks a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah the prophet.

Verse 30 – “For as Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so also the Son of Man will be to this generation.

Verse 31 – “The queen of the South will rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and indeed a greater than Solomon is here.

Verse 32 – “The men of Nineveh will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and indeed a greater than Jonah is here.

Since Jonah’s preaching promoted repentance by the people of Nineveh, such preaching would be the only sign Israel would receive from Jesus. The queen of Sheba (queen of the South) responded to the wisdom of Solomon, which was not equal to the wisdom and salvation offered by Jesus the Son of Man. If Nineveh repented at Jonah’s preaching, how much more should the crowds repent at Jesus preaching.

The Ninevites and the Queen of the South turned to God with far less evidence than Jesus was giving His listeners and far less than we have today. With the knowledge and insight that is available to us, our response to Christ ought to be even more complete and wholehearted!

Parable of the Lighted Lamp

Verse 33 – “No one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a secret place or under a basket, but on a lampstand, that those who come in may see the light.

Verse 34 – “The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness.

Verse 35 – “Therefore, take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness.

Verse 36 – “If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, the whole body will be full of light, as when the bright shinning of a lamp gives you light.”

The lamp is Christ and the word of God; the eye represents spiritual understanding and insight. Evil desires make the eye less sensitive and blot out the light of Christ’s presence. Once sin starts to cover the light and darkness grows, that light will get dimmer and dimmer and sin progresses.

Woe To The Pharisees

Verse 37 – And as He spoke, a certain Pharisee asked Him to dine with him. So He went in and sat down to eat.

Verse 38 – And when the Pharisees saw it, he marveled that He had not first washed before dinner.

The Pharisees had made an entire ritual of washing before a meal. Jesus wasn’t in to their ritual.

Verse 39 – But the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees make the outside of the cup and dish clean, but your inward part is full of greed and wickedness.

This washing that the Pharisees did, was not done for health reasons, but as a symbol of washing away any contamination from touching anything unclean. Not only did the Pharisees make a public show of their washing, but they also condemned everyone else to follow a practice originally intended for the priests.

Verse 40 – “Foolish ones! Did not He who made the outside make the inside also?

Verse 41 – “But rather give alms of such things as you have; then indeed all things are clean to you.

They only gave alms to the poor in the public eye.

Verse 42 – “But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass by justice and the love of God. These you ought to have done, without leaving the  others undone.

It’s easy to rationalize not helping others because we have already given to the church, but a person who follows Jesus will share and help needy neighbors. Our help to others shouldn’t stop with our local church.

Verse 43 – “Woe to you Pharisees! For you love the best seats in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces.

This second woe was because they loved the spotlight, not the Lord.

Verse 44 – “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like graves which are not seen, and the men who walk over them are not aware of them.”

Regarding this third woe; if Jews walked over “unmarked” graves, they became defiled. Ironically, Jesus said that following the teachings of the Pharisees was like walking over an unmarked grave; you would become defiled without knowing it, because the teachings of the Pharisees were corrupt and misleading.

Can you imagine, going into a house and sitting down to eat, the host then criticizes you for not following their ritual of washing, and then you blast them with words that show how corrupt and wicked they are?

“Woe” on the Lawyers (scribes)

Verse 45 – Then one of the lawyers answered and said to Him, “Teacher, by saying these things You reproach us also.”

Verse 46 – And He said, “Woe to you also, you lawyers! For you load men with burdens hard to bear, and you yourselves do not touch the burdens with one of your fingers.

These “burdens” were the laws the Pharisees had added to God’s law. Does this sound familiar with our law-makers we have today running this country? The law-makers don’t obey their own laws, but if the “regular” citizens break them, they go to jail!

Verse 47 – “Woe to you! For you build the tombs of the prophets, and your fathers killed them.

Verse 48 – “In fact, you bear witness that you approve the deeds of your fathers; for they indeed killed them, and you build their tombs.

Jesus point: They loved to build monuments after they had killed and silenced the prophets. The Pharisees and scribes were like their fathers.

Verse 49 – “Therefore the wisdom of God also said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they will kill and persecute,’

Verse 50 – “that the blood of all prophets which was shed from the foundation of the world may be required of this generation,

Verse 51 – “from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah who perished between the altar and the temple. Yes, I say to you, it shall be required of this generation.

God’s prophets had been persecuted and murdered throughout history. But this generation was rejecting more than a human prophet – they were rejecting God.

Verse 52 – “Woe to you lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge. You did not enter in yourselves, and those who were entering in you hindered.”

They took away the key of knowledge by their erroneous interpretations of Scripture and their added man – made rules, they made God’s truth hard to understand and practice. They had closed the door to God’s love and thrown away the key.

Verse 53 – And He said these things to them, the scribes and the Pharisees began to assail (make a violent attack) Him vehemently, and to cross-examine Him about many things,

Verse 54 – lying in wait for Him, and seeking to catch Him in something He might say, that they might accuse Him.

They wouldn’t be able to arrest Jesus for just merely words. They had to find a legal way to get rid of Him. These people could not be corrected: Proverbs 9:8 – Do not reprove a scoffer, lest he hate you; rebuke a wise man, and he will love you. Proverbs 23:9 – Do not speak in the hearing of a fool, for he will despise the wisdom of your words. However, “Jesus took them to school!”

 

 

 

 

Luke – Chapter 10

Mission of the Seventy

Verse 1 – After these things the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go.

Verse 2 – Then He said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the labors are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.

Verse 3 – “Go your way; behold I send you out as lambs among wolves.

Verse 4 – “Carry neither money bag, sack, nor sandals; and greet no one along the road.

Jesus couldn’t reach all He needed to in such a short time. A lot of people forget that Jesus had more than only twelve disciples. The same goes today. We have missionaries all over the world preaching and reaching thousands. But these went before Him to prepare their hearts, so when He entered their city, they would be ready to hear the message of God’s kingdom.

Verse 5 – “But whatever house you enter, say, ‘Peace to this house.”

Verse 6 – “And if a son of peace is there, your peace will rest on it; if not, it will return to you.

Whether good or bad in Jewish custom, a man is called, “Son of … Wicked men were called children of wrath; Judas is called, son of perdition. Son of peace in this text not only means a peaceable, quiet man, but one also of good report for his uprightness. It would have been a dishonor to this mission, had the missionaries taken up their lodgings with those who had not a good report among them.

Verse 7 – “And remain in the same house, eating and drinking such things as they give, for the laborer is worthy of his wage. Do not go from house to house.

Shifting from house to house could offend the family who first took them in. Some families might begin to compete if they were to move from house to house. And, ministers of God should be paid for their work as the apostle Paul says in 1 Timothy 5:17, 18.

Verse 8 – “Whatever city you enter, and they receive you, eat such things as are set before you. (Don’t be picky.)

Verse 9 – “And heal the sick who are there, and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you!

Verse 10 – “But whatever city you enter, and they do not receive you, go out into its streets and say,

Verse 11 – “The very dust of your city which cling to us we wipe off against you. Nevertheless know this, that the kingdom of God has come near you.’

This makes it very clear: If you don’t receive the message of the Gospel, you can’t expect anything from God.

Verse 12 – “But I say to you that it will be more tolerable in that day for Sodom than for that city.

In that day of judgment. Sodom was destroyed for their great wickedness, Genesis 19. Sodom will suffer at judgment day, but cities who saw the Messiah and rejected Him will suffer even more.

Verse 13 – “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented a great while ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes.

Verse 14 – “But it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment than for you.

Verse 15 – “And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be thrust down to Hades.

Verse 16 – “He who hears you hears Me, he who rejects you rejects Me, and he who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me.”

You can’t skip over Jesus and get to God! Plain and simple. The only way  to the Father is through Jesus Christ. If you reject Jesus, then you reject God, because He is God.

Verse 17 – Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord even the demons are subject to us in Your name.”

Verse 18 – And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.

Verse 19 – “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the powers of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

Verse 20 – “Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.

There’s nothing wrong with being excited when we lay hands on people and they are healed. However, be cautious about how you begin to think of yourself. Pride is what caused Satan to be cast out of heaven. Keep focused on what is so much more important, that your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life!

Verse 21 – In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.

That Thou has not revealed these things to the Pharisees and scribes, who idolize their own wisdom; but has revealed them to the simple and humble of heart.

Verse 22 – “All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows who the Son is but the Father, and who the Father is but the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.”

It is impossible for spiritually dead humans to know God the Father or His Son unless the Son through His Holy Spirit reveals both. That’s why people who are not “born-again”, have no understanding of scripture, it’s foreign to them.

Verse 23 – And He turned to His disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes which see the things you see;

Verse 24 – “for I tell you that many prophets and kings have desired to see what you see, and have not seen it, and to hear what you hear, and have not heard it.”

Jesus let His disciples know that it was both a privileged and a blessing to see the prophesies spoken of by the prophets and kings, coming to pass. In 1 Peter 1:12, he said that even the angels desired to see these things. Please don’t ever take your Christianity for granted. What a privilege we have, being able to have it all written down for us in any language we choose. By faith, we read, hear, and experience the grace of God through what Jesus has done for us all. Get to know Him, and never ever stop learning of His gracious love.

How to Inherit Eternal Life

Verse 25 – And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him saying, “Teacher, what shall we do to inherit eternal life?”

An expert in law refers to a scribe, many of whom were also Pharisees.

Verse 26 – He said to him, “What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?”

Verse 27 – So he answered and said, “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and your neighbor as yourself.’ ”

Verse 28 – And He said to him, “You have answered rightly; do this and you will live.”

Jesus didn’t go on to explain that no one can do these things perfectly all the time. No one loves perfectly all the time in every situation but Christ.

Parable of the Good Samaritan

Verse 29 – But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

Verse 30 – Then Jesus answered and said; “A certain man went down to Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, who stripped him, and departed, leaving him half dead.

This lawyer wanted to justify himself by appearing to be a righteous man. Jesus is about to teach them, that a neighbor is anyone from any nation or religion, who is in distress and needs help.

Verse 31 – “Now by chance a certain priest came down that road. And when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.

If the priest thought the man was dead, he couldn’t touch him because then he would be unclean. But the priest didn’t even check.

Verse 32 – “Likewise a Levite, when he arrived at the place came and looked, and passed by on the other side.

Verse 33 – “But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion on him,

The Jews considered the Samaritans to be half-breeds, who had intermarried with foreigners and who were guilty of false worship. The half-dead man, was more than likely a Jew, because he was traveling to Jerusalem to Jericho. To this lawyer, the person least likely to act correctly would be the Samaritan. They were hated enemies of the Jews.

Verse 34 – “And went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.

How many people do you know who would stop what they were doing, or stop where they were going to attend to someone’s need? Having compassion, does something about the situation.

Verse 35 – “On the next day, when he departed, he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said to him, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I come again, I will repay you.

Trust me when I say, “All Christians will be tested in this area, at one time or another.” Do we interrupt our daily lives to see to someone’s needs, knowing they could never repay us?

Verse 36 – “So which of these three do you think was neighbor to him who fell among the thieves?”

Verse 37 – And he said, “He who showed mercy on him.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

Verse 38 – Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house.

Verse 39 – And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word.

Verse 40 – But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”

Verse 41 – And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things.

Let’s not be so hard on Martha, after all, she was trying to give Jesus and His twelve disciples a proper welcome, and she was overwhelmed with work. This would be like big family gathering, people sitting around, and watching one person wait on everyone, making sure everything was “just right.” However, Jesus doesn’t see it the way Martha sees it.

Verse 42 – “But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

Mary and Martha both loved Jesus. On this occasion they were both serving Him. But Martha thought Mary’s style of serving was inferior and a waste of time. We shouldn’t let our business interfere with just spending time with Jesus. Jesus didn’t blame Martha for being concerned about household chores, He was only asking her to set priorities and to not fault those who do.

 

 

Luke – Chapter 9

The Twelve Are Sent to Preach

Verse 1 – Then He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases.

Nowhere in the New Testament did I read where Jesus ever took back this power. So from this time forward they had that power and authority over demons and curing diseases. However, did they continue to use it? No. Believers: “Don’t ever forget that same power that raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you!”

Verse 2 – He sent them to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.

If Jesus had limited Himself to preaching only, the people would have thought the kingdom was spiritual only. If He healed without preaching they would only expect what they could physically see without discernment. The truth is, Jesus is both God and man, physical and spiritual and the salvation He offers is for the soul and the body. Miracles will follow those who believe!

Verse 3 – And He said to them, “Take nothing for the journey, neither staffs nor bag nor bread nor money; and do not have two tunics apiece.

Verse 4 – “Whatever house you enter, stay there, and from there depart.

Jesus wanted them to depend on others for all their needs because: (1) It would clearly show that the Messiah did not come to offer wealth to His followers; (2) It forced the disciples to depend on God’s power and not on their own provision; (3) And , it got the people involved and made them more eager to receive the message.

Verse 5 – “And whoever will not receive you, when you go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet as a testimony against them.”

This actin would show that the disciples were not responsible for how the people responded to the message. Like the disciples, move on from people who are not responsive to the gospel, to people who are.

Verse 6 – So they departed and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.

Do you ever wonder why there is nothing recorded of what Jesus was doing while the disciples were gone? I can assure you, He wasn’t sitting idle.

Verse 7 – Now Herod the tetrarch heard of all that was done by Him; and he was perplexed, because it was said by some that John had risen fro the dead,

Verse 8 – and by some that Elijah had appeared, and by others that one of the old prophets had risen again.

Verse 9 – And Herod said, “John I have beheaded, but who is this of whom I hear such things?” And he sought to see Him.

Verse 10 – And the apostles, when they had returned, told Him all that they had done. And He took them and went aside privately into a deserted place belonging to the city called Bethsaida.

Verse 11 – But when the multitudes knew it, they followed Him; and He received them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who had need of healing.

We don’t see the disciples healing and preaching along side of Jesus because Jesus took the lead after the disciples returned. Jesus shows us how to respond when people interrupt our schedules, help them.

Five Thousand Are Fed

Verse 12 – When the day began to wear away, the twelve came and said to Him, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding towns, and country, and lodge and get provisions; for we are in a deserted place here.”

Verse 13 – But He said to them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we go and buy food for all these people.”

When you know God wants you to accomplish something that looks impossible to you, don’t look at your lack. Trust and faith combined will show God you are willing. He will supply whatever you need. Leave the “how” up to Him!

Verse 14 – For there were about five thousand men. And He said to His disciples, “Make them sit down in groups of fifty.”

Matthew says, “Besides women and children,” so there very well could have been close to a million people there.

Verse 15 – And they did so, and made them all sit down.

Verse 16 – Then He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looked up to heaven, He blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the multitude.

What do you think the Lord wants us to learn here? I believe, if we give the first of our increase to the Lord, in tithes, God will bless and multiply the rest. Offerings are over and above the tithe and the tithe is 10% of our earnings (what is placed in our hand). It will not multiply until it leaves our hands.

Verse 17 – So they all ate and were filled, and twelve baskets of the leftover fragments were taken up by them.

Jesus was concerned with both their physical need and their spiritual need. You can’t help those in need unless we consider both.

Peter’s Confession of Faith

Verse 18 – And it happened as He was alone praying, that His disciples joined Him, and He asked them, saying, “Who do the crowds say that I am?”

Verse 19 – So they answered and said, “John the Baptist, but some say Elijah, and others say that one of the old prophets has risen again.”

Verse 20 – He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered and said, “The Christ of God.”

Matthew 16:16 – “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” The Christian faith goes beyond knowing what others believe. It requires us to hold this belief ourselves.

Verse 21 – And He strictly warned and commanded them to tell this to no one,

Verse 22 – saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed and be raised the third day.”

We can’t explain to others what we don’t fully understand ourselves. Jesus begins at this point to  explain what was about to happen so they wouldn’t be surprised when it did. The disciples had to first spend time learning and discerning the truths of the kingdom. Once that was complete, they would wait for the Holy Spirit to come upon them with knowledge and power to strengthen their testimony of the Christ.

Verse 23 – Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and  follow Me.

As disciples of Christ, we can expect painful situations because of our allegiance to Christ. The Christian life is not a bed of roses, but the reward in the end far out-weighs this life’s heartaches.

Verse 42 – “For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, will save it.

If the things of this world like money and material things are most important to you, then the end result will be without Christ. However, if we are willing to obey, be uncomfortable, and be stepped on and persecuted for Christ’s sake in this life, then our reward is with Him throughout eternity.

Verse 43 – “For what advantage is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?

Verse 26 – For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels.

Luke’s Greek audience would have found it difficult to understand a God who could literally die, just as Jesus’ Jewish audience would have been perplexed by a Messiah who would let Himself be captured. Both would be “ashamed” of Jesus for letting either happen, if they did not look past His death to His glorious resurrection and second coming. Then they would see Jesus not as one who looses, but as the Lord of the universe who through His death brought salvation to all!

Verse 27 – “But I tell you truly, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the kingdom of God.”

To all those who would witness the resurrection and ascension.

Verse 28 – And it came to pass, about eight days after these sayings, that He took Peter, John, and James and went up on a mountain to pray.

Verse 29 – And as He prayed, the appearance of His face was altered, and His robe became white and glistening.

verse 30 – Then behold, two men talked with Him, who were Moses and Elijah,

Verse 31 – who appeared in glory and spoke of His decease which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.

Verse 32 – But Peter and those with him were heavy with sleep; and when they were fully awake, they saw His glory and the two men who stood with Him.

Verse 33 – And it happened, as they were parting from Him, that Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good for us to be here; and let us make three tabernacles; one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah” – not knowing what he said.

Verse 34 – While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were fearful as they entered the cloud.

Verse 35 – Then a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!”

Verse 36 – And when the voice had ceased, Jesus was found alone. But they kept quiet, and told no one in those days any of the things they had seen.

If a person’s teaching is true, it will agree entirely with scripture. God told the disciples to “Hear Him!” We are to do the same. Compare everything you hear to His words and you will not be led astray. That’s the best advise we could ever take in.

Verse 37 – Now it happened on the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, that a great multitude met Him.

Verse 38 – Suddenly a man from the multitude cried out, saying, “Teacher, I implore You, look on my son, for he is my only child.

Verse 39 – “And behold, a spirit seizes him, and he suddenly cries out; it convulses him so that he foams at the mouth, bruising him, it departs from him with great difficulty.

Verse 40 – “So I implored Your disciples to cast it out, but they could not.”

Well, we know that Peter, James, and John had been with Jesus on the mountain, so it wasn’t these three the man was talking about. Scripture doesn’t mention it was the other nine disciples either, as being the ones. We can assume it might have been others who were followers, but had not been given power to cast demons out.

Verse 41 – Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here.”

Verse 42 – And as he was still coming, the demon threw him down and convulsed him. Then Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, healed the child, and gave him back to his father.

Christ Prophesies His Coming Death

Verse 43 – And they were all amazed at the majesty of God. But while everyone marveled at all the things which Jesus did, He said to His disciples,

Verse 44 – “Let these words sink down into your ears, for the Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men.”

“Pay close attention to what I’m about to ell you!” The disciples need to be alert so that when these things begin to take place, they wouldn’t be afraid.

Verse 45 – But they did not understand this saying, and it was hidden from them so that they did not perceive it; and they were afraid to ask Him about this saying.

You know how, when someone is trying to tell you something, but it’s just not registering? This is how the disciples were. They didn’t want to hear that Jesus had to suffer and die, so they just denied it. It’s like when you receive that horrible news that a loved one has died. However, here, the disciples were being told beforehand, and they more or less rejected it.

Verse 46 – Then a dispute arose among them as to which of them would be the greatest.

Verse 47 – And Jesus perceiving the thought of their heart, took a little child and set him by Him,

Verse 48 – and said to them, “Whoever receives this little child in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me receives Him who sent Me. For he who is the least among you all will be great.”

This argument came up often among the disciples. They had a competitive attitude, as we do. Jesus pointed out that whoever had a truly humble attitude, as a child does, they would be great.

Our care for others is a measure by the kingdom’s greatness. How much concern do you show to others? This is an actual question that can measure greatness. How much do we help others who can give nothing back in return.

Verse 49 – Then John answered and said, “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow with us.”

Verse 50 – But Jesus said to him, “Do not forbid him, for he who is not against us is for us.”

Our pride is hurt when we see someone else succeed where we have failed. There is no room for jealousy in spiritual warfare.

Verse 51 – Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem,

Verse 52 – and sent messengers before His face. And as they went, there entered a village of the Samaritans, to prepare for Him.

Verse 53 – But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem.

Verse 54 – And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?”

James and John were nicknamed, “Sons of Thunder.” This was likely because perhaps they had fiery tempers.

Verse 55 – But He turned and rebuked them, and said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of.

Verse 56 – “For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.” And they went to another village.

Did you catch that? Revenge is a “spirit”, and it’s not from God. Vengeance belongs to the Lord.

Verse 57 – Now it happened as they journeyed on the road, that someone said to Him, “Lord, I will follow You wherever You go.”

Verse 58 – And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.”

In other words: Count the cost before you commit to following Him. To follow Christ, is to loosen our grip on the things that normally provide physical and emotional securities.

Verse 59 – Then He said to another “Follow Me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.”

Verse 60 – Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.

The man’s words were an excuse to delay. People who don’t really want to follow Jesus, can find all kinds of excuses not to. They reason within themselves, but the real reason is, “They simply love sin more than Him.”

Verse 61 – And another also said, “Lord I will follow You, but let me first go and bid them farewell who are at my house.”

Verse 62 – But Jesus said to him, “No one having put his hand to the plow, and looking back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

Can a farmer keep a straight furrow if he looks behind him? The person who is employed in the work of ministry cannot do the work of evangelist, if he turns his desires to worldly profit.

 

 

 

 

Luke – Chapter 8 –

Verse 1 – Now it came to pass, afterward, that He went through every city and village, preaching and bringing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with Him,

Verse 2 – and a certain woman who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities – Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons,

The “glad tidings” of the kingdom of God are “righteousness, peace, and joy,” in the Holy Ghost, Romans 14:17.

Verse 3 – and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who provided for Him from their substance.

By allowing these women to travel with Him, Jesus was showing others, that all people are equal under God. These women supported Jesus with their own money.

Parables of the Soil

Verse 4 – And when a great multitude had gathered, and others had come to Him from every city, He spoke by a parable:

Verse 5 – “A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it.

A parable forces the listeners to think for themselves, comparing the known with the unknown. A parable also hides truths to listeners who are too lazy to think for themselves. Most of Jesus parable have one point and only one meaning.

Verse 6 – “Some fell on rock; and as soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture.

This is a sower throwing out good seed by hand. Some falls by the wayside and some falls on rocks. The seed that is devoured by birds or springs up and withered, is no fault of the farmer or the seed. The yield depends on the condition of the soil.

Verse 7 – “And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it.

Verse 8 – “But others fell on good ground, sprang up, and yielded a crop a hundredfold.” When He had said these things He cried, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!”

Verse 9 – Then His disciples asked Him, saying, “What does this parable mean?”

Verse 10 – And He said, “To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is given in parables, that ‘Seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.’

“To know the mysteries,” is to grasp the revealed secrets. In the New Testament it always means “something once hidden is now revealed.” God is a revealer of secrets. This parable of the sower was the people’s reaction to Jesus teachings, here and the rest of the parables. The believers would understand His sayings and the unbeliever wouldn’t, it would remain a mystery.

Verse 11 – “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

Verse 12 – “Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.

In any congregation, there will be those who hear the word, but yet remain unsaved.

Verse 13 – “But the ones on the rock are those who when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away.

These are those who are shallow, impulsive listeners, whose enthusiasm only lasts for a time. However, when temptation, in any form of affliction or persecution comes which tests the moral conduct, they fall away.

Verse 14 – “And the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity.

This class of people have worldly ambitions, preoccupied with earthy careers and pleasures crowding out the good seed – overriding the Word of God. They never cultivated their soil.

Verse 15 – “But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with, patience.

These are fruitful believers who receive God’s Word with an open heart, persevere in faith. These put their faith towards good works for the kingdom of God.

Parable of the Lamp

Verse 16 – “No one, when he has lit a lamp, covers it with a vessel or puts it under a bed, but sets it on a lampstand, that those who enter may see light.

Verse 17 – “For nothing is secret that will not be revealed, nor anything hidden that will not be known and come to light.

Our Christianity should not be hidden from others. Why would we ever hide the Gospel of Jesus Christ from anyone? However, some do. When God’s Holy Spirit comes to live on the inside of us, He brings power and light. That light needs to shine forth into others lives, so they too can have a changed life.

Verse 18 – “Therefore take heed how you hear. For whoever has, to him more will be given; and whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.”

Keep in mind that Jesus is still talking about “light.” Those who have truth, understanding, and revelations, more will be given! And to those who don’t have this light, even what little truth, understanding, and revelation, they have, will soon be forgotten!

Christ’s True Brethren

Verse 19 – Then His mother and brothers came to Him, and could not approach Him because of the crowd.

Verse 20 – And it was told Him by some, who said, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, desiring to see You.”

Verse 21 – But He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.”

Human relationships built upon mutual faith in Christ, spiritual openness to one another, and shared obedience to the word of God, are more important than relationships with physical family member’s, especially if the family members are unbelievers.

The Storm Is Stilled

Verse 22 – Now it happened, on a certain day, that He got into a boat with His disciples. And He said to them, “Let us go over to the other side of the lake.” And they launched out.

Verse 23 – But as they sailed He fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water, and were in jeopardy.

The Sea of Galilee is actually a large lake. Storms can be fierce and all of a sudden, with waves as high as 20 feet.

Verse 24 – And they came to Him and awoke Him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!” Then He arose and rebuked the wind and the raging water. And they ceased, and there was calm.

Verse 25 – But He said to them, “Where is your faith?” And they were afraid and marveled, saying to one another, “Who can this be? For He commands even the wind and water, and they obey Him!”

So what is the lesson here? Fear is not from God! 2 Timothy 1:7 – For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love of a sound mind. There will be situations all through life that will come with a fear of something dreadful happening. However, if you belong to God, just stop and say to yourself, “This is not from God!” Our God is sovereign and knows and controls everything concerning you. Rest in His hands and think on Him. He promises to keep us in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Him!

Verse 26 – Then they sailed to the country of the Gadarenes, which is opposite Galilee.

Verse 27 – And when He stepped out on the land, there met Him a certain man from the city, who had demons for a long time. And he wore no clothes, nor did he live in a house but in tombs.

Verse 28 – When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before Him, and with a loud and voice said, “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me!”

Don’t torment me, probably refers to Jesus sending the demon to the abyss, a place where some of the demons are currently confined. Demons are Satan’s messengers, are powerful and destructive. Still active today, they attempt to distort and destroy people’s relationship with God. If we resist the devil and trust in Christ, he will flee from us (James 4:7).

Verse 29 – For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the wilderness.

Verse 30 – Jesus asked him saying, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion,” because many demons have entered him.

Verse 31 – And they begged Him that He would not command them to go out into the abyss.

The abyss is referred to as the bottomless pit in Revelation 9:1 and 20:1-3.

Verse 32 – Now a herd of swine was feeding there on the mountain. And they begged Him that He would permit them to enter them. And He permitted them.

Verse 33 – Then the demons went out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the lake and drowned.

Some might ask, “Why didn’t Jesus completely destroy  the demons?” Because the time for their total destruction had not come yet. God has a final destination for all wickedness. That plan is laid out in the Book of Revelation.

Verse 34 – When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country.

Verse 35 – Then they went out to see what had happened, and came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had departed sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid.

Why were the people afraid? Jesus had released a power they had never seen before and that power revealed His identity!

Verse 36 – They also had seen it told them by what means he who had been demon possessed was healed.

Verse 37 – Then the whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes asked Him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. And He got into the boat and returned.

Verse 38 – Now the man from whom the demons had departed begged Him that he might be with Him. But Jesus sent him away, saying,

Verse 39 – “Return to your own house and tell what great things God has done for you.” And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.

Jesus didn’t intend on returning to this area, so He told the man to tell people what the Lord had done for him.

Verse 40 – So it was, when Jesus returned, that the multitude welcomed Him, for they were all waiting for Him.

A Woman Is Healed

Verse 41 – And behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue. And he fell down at Jesus’ feet and begged Him to come to his house,

Verse 42 – for he had an only daughter about twelve years of age, and she was dying. But as He went, the multitude thronged Him.

Verse 43 – Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any,

Verse 44 – came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.

What a difference there is between the crowds that are curious about Jesus and the few who reach out and touch Him! Today, many are familiar with Jesus, but nothing in their lives change or are bettered because of Him. It is only faith that release God’s healing power. We are to seek Him with all our hearts.

Verse 45 – And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?” When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng You and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?”

Jesus knew exactly who touched Him. He didn’t want her hiding anymore. He also wanted her to know it wasn’t His garment that healed her, it was her faith in Him. This woman had taken a huge chance by even being in public, because by law, it wasn’t allowed.

Verse 46 – But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.”

Verse 47 – Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.

Is this not a perfect example of how we come to Jesus when we know only He can save us? We come guilty and ashamed, but with faith, knowing only Jesus can make us “New!” Then as this woman did in front of the multitude, we should proclaim our faith in Jesus the Christ!

Verse 48 – And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer, your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

Verse 49 – While He was still speaking, someone came from the ruler of the synagogues’ house saying to him, “Your daughter is dead. Do not trouble the Teacher.”

Verse 50 – But when Jesus heard it, He answered him, saying, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.”

During the slight delay of Jesus interacting with the woman with the issue of blood, Jairu’s daughter had died. However, Jesus wanted Jairus and the crowd to know, “The same kind of faith that the woman had, was the same faith that would raise Jairus’ daughter to life again.

Verse 51 – When He came into the house, He permitted no one to go in except Peter, James, and John, and the father and mother of the girl.

Verse 52 – Now all wept and mourned for her; but He said, “Do not weep; she is not dead, but sleeping.”

When Jesus is present, there is always hope.

Verse 53 – And they laughed Him to scorn, knowing she was dead.

We know from verse 51, that only the father, mother, Peter, James, and John, are in the house with Jesus and the girl, so who “blew off” what Jesus said about her only sleeping? They did! So yes, there was doubt present.

Verse 54 – But He put them all out, took her by the hand and called, saying, “Little girl, arise.”

They missed seeing the miracle because of their scoffing! Don’t miss out on your deliverance because of your unbelief!

Verse 55 – Then her spirit returned, and she arose immediately. And He commanded that she be given something to eat.

Verse 56 – And her parents were astonished, but He charged them to tell no one what had happened.

Jesus wanted the people in this town to see this miracle for themselves. No explanation needed. He also wanted them to seek Him, not His miracles. We build the relationship – the kingdom first, by seeking after Him and His righteousness, and the miracles will follow!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Luke – Chapter 7

A Centurion’s Servant Is Healed

Verse 1 – Now when He concluded all His sayings in the hearing of the people, He entered Capernaum.

Verse 2 – And a certain centurion’s servant, who was dear to him, was sick and ready to die.

It is recorded that this centurion loved the nation and had built the synagogue, even though he was a Roman official.

Verse 3 – So when he heard about Jesus, he sent elders of the Jews to Him, pleading with Him to come and heal his servant.

Matthew records that the centurion went himself for the benefit of showing his faith to the Jews. However, Luke’s audience that he wrote to, were Gentiles, and he wanted to show a good relationship between Jewish elders and the Roman centurion.

Verse 4 – And when they came to Jesus, they begged Him earnestly, saying that the one for whom He should do this was worthy,

Verse 5 – “for he loves our nation, and has built us a synagogue.”

Verse 6 – Then Jesus went with them. And when He was already not far from the house, the centurion sent friend’s to Him, saying to Him, “Lord, do not trouble Yourself, for I am not worthy that You should enter under my roof.

Verse 7 – “Therefore I did not even think myself worthy to come to You. But say the word, and my servant will be healed.

Verse 8 – “For I also am a man placed under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.

This centurion recognized Jesus power to heal and His authority to do so from wherever He was.

Verse 9 – When Jesus heard these things, He marveled at him, and turned around and said to the crowd that followed Him, “I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel!”

The centurion’s faith was amazing because he was a Gentile and had not been brought up in the ways of God. We can’t always assume when telling others about Christ, that they understand and know how loving our God is. We have to tell them, but above all, show them with our actions.

Verse 10 – And those who were sent, returning to the house, found the servant well who had been sick.

A Widow’s Son Is Raised

Verse 11 – Now it happened, the day after that He went into a city called Nain; and many of His disciples went with Him, and a large crowd.

Verse 12 – And when He came near the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of this mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the city was with her.

Nain was about six miles south of Nazareth. Jesus, with His disciples, met a funeral procession for a window’s only son. I think Luke mention’s that she is a widow because he wants his readers to know, now she will not have any financial support. She would more than likely resort to begging for food.

Verse 13 – When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, “Do not weep.”

Verse 14 – Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, “Young man, I say to you, arise.”

By custom Jewish funerals had open coffins, but anyone who touched the corpse became ceremonially unclean. This is the first of several times that Jesus raised a person from the dead.

Verse 15 – And he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother.

Verse 16 – Then fear came upon all, and they glorified God saying, “A great prophet has risen up among us”; and “God has visited His people.”

This dead man did not earn his second chance at life, and neither do we earn our new life in Christ. This is a perfect example of being “dead” in our sin, and being “raised” to life in Christ Jesus.

Verse 17 – And this report about Him went throughout all Judea and all the surrounding region.

Verse 18 – Then the disciples of John reported to him concerning these things.

Verse 19 – And John, calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to Jesus, saying, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?”

At this time, John was in prison. He asked this question out of confusion, not doubt. On one hand, Jesus acted as the Messiah should have, but on the other, He did not free all the righteous prisoners and overturn the Roman government. So John sent the disciples to ask for sure, “Are You the One?”

Verse 20 – When the men had come to Him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to You, saying, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?’ ”

Verse 21 – And that very hour He cured many people of their infirmities, afflictions, and evil spirits; and to many who were blind He gave sight.

Verse 22 – Then Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them.

We might think it odd that Jesus kept healing after John’s disciple’s came to Him with a question, but Jesus wanted them to be an eyewitness to these things. When they returned to John and was able to tell him first-hand what they had seen, John would have his answer.

Verse 23 – “And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”

Jesus responded in a way that John would understand. Blessed are those who gladly receive the miracles of Jesus the Christ.

Verse 24 – When the messengers of John had departed, He began to speak to the multitudes concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind?

Verse 25 – “But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed those who are gorgeously appareled and live in luxury are in king’s courts.

Verse 26 – “But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet.

Verse 27 – “This is he of whom it is written: ‘Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, who will prepare Your way before You.’

Verse 28 – “For I say to you, among those born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.”

John was the last to function like the Old Testament prophets and the last to prepare the people for the coming Messiah.

Verse 29 – And when all the people heard Him, even the tax collectors justified God, having been baptized with the baptism of John.

Verse 30 – But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him.

All those who had repented and been baptized by John, acknowledged God’s way of righteousness. But the Pharisees and lawyer’s who would not repent and humble themselves and refused to be baptized by John, rejected God’s plan of salvation.

Jesus Criticizes His Generation

Verse 31 – And the Lord said, “To what then shall I liken the men of this generation, and what are they like?

Verse 32 – “They are like children sitting in the marketplace and calling to one another saying: ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we mourned to you, and you did not weep.’

Verse 33 – “For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’

Verse 34 – “The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look, a glutton and a winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’

Verse 35 – “But wisdom is justified by all her children.”

Jesus declared that it was impossible to please the people of his generation. John the Baptist had a very strict lifestyle, but was accused of having a demon. Jesus was accused of living a loose lifestyle by eating with sinners and was called a glutton and a drunkard. Jesus called them hypocrites.

A Woman Anoint’s Jesus’ Feet

Verse 36 – Then one of the Pharisees asked Him to eat with him. And He went to the Pharisees house, and sat down to eat.

Verse 37 – And behold, a woman in the city who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at the table in the Pharisees house, brought an alabaster flask of fragrant oil,

Verse 38 – and stood at His feet behind Him weeping; and she began to wash His feet with tears, and wiped them with her hair of her head; and she kissed His feet and anointed them with fragrant oil.

This woman was an uninvited guest. By her example, it showed a huge honor and gratitude toward Jesus. She had evidently heard His teaching and it had affected her deeply, enough to entered this Pharisees house uninvited.

Verse 39 – Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw this, he spoke to himself, saying, “This man, if He were a prophet, would know who and what manner of woman this is who is touching Him, for she is a sinner.”

In other words: “If Jesus was truly a prophet, He would know the character of this woman, and would be repelled by her.”

Verse 40 – And Jesus answered and said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he said, “Teacher, say it.”

This Pharisee is not Simon Peter. There are several Simon’s in the New Testament, which was a very common name.

Verse 41 – “There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty.

Verse 42 – “And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?”

Verse 43 – Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.” And He said to him, “You have rightly judged.”

Has Jesus forgiven us much? How do we show our gratitude? Are we kind to others, not thinking we are better than them? Do you compare yourself with others because you haven’t been as sinful? Sin is sin, anyway you look at it. One is not greater than the other. Our lesser sin does not make us more of a Christian than the murderer who also has God’s forgiveness.

Verse 44 – Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head.

Verse 45 – “You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in.

Verse 46 – “You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil.

Verse 47 – “Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.”

It was customary when a guest entered a house, that they would be greeted with a kiss on the cheek and water in which to wash their feet. They wore sandals and their feet were dusty from the road. Jesus received neither from this Pharisee.

This was a perfect opportunity for Jesus to demonstrate a sincere heart of repentance. The Pharisee thought he was too good to wash Jesus feet or greet Him with a kiss, and that neither was his sin great. Those who think their sin is not as bad as another, will be forgiven little.

Verse 48 – And He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

Verse 49 – And those who sat at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”

Verse 50 – Then He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.

Jesus makes it clear that her faith in Him, saved her. His authority to forgive sins was once again in questioned.

 

 

Luke – Chapter 6

Jesus Works On the Sabbath

Verse 1 – Now it happened on the second Sabbath after the first that He went through the grainfields. And His disciples plucked the heads of grain and ate them, rubbing them in their hands.

Verse 2 – And some of the Pharisees said to them, “Why are you doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath?”

The only law the disciples were breaking, was the law the Pharisees had made. The disciples were merely plucking the heads of corn, no one had a sickle in which to harvest (Deuteronomy 23:25).

Verse 3 – But Jesus answering them said, “Have you not read this, what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him:

Verse 4 – “how he went into the house of God, took and ate the showbread, and also gave some to those who were with him, which is not lawful for any but the priests to eat?”

Jesus simply told them: “There are exceptions even to important religious standards.” The need of them being hungry was more important than their ceremonial regulations. Jesus says, “If you condemn Me, then you must condemn David,” which they would never do.

Verse 5 – And He said to them, “The Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath.”

They didn’t understand nor would they admit, Jesus created the Sabbath and the Creator is always greater than the creation.

Verse 6 – Now it happened on another Sabbath, also, that He entered the Synagogue and taught. And a man was there whose right hand was withered.

Verse 7 – And the scribes and Pharisees watched Him closely, whether He would heal on the Sabbath, that they might find an accusation against Him.

How ridiculous! They weren’t even concentrating on the fact that a Man such as Jesus could heal instantly, but instead on the day that He did it. It was more important for them to keep the law than a man be healed of a withered hand.

Verse 8 – But He knew their thoughts, and said to the man who had the withered hand, “Arise and stand here.” And he arose and stood.

Verse 9 – Then Jesus said to them, “I will ask you one thing: Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to destroy life?”

Verse 10 – And looking around at them all, He said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” And he did so, and his hand was restored as whole as the other.

Verse 11 – But they were filled with rage, and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus.

It was ironic that it was their hatred, combined with their zeal for the law, that drove them to plot murder, which was against the law. People’s hearts haven’t changed today either. A Christian doing good still infuriates some, enough to want to kill them.

Verse 12 – Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.

Verse 13 – And when it was day, He called His disciples to Him; and from them He chose twelve whom He also named apostles;

Apostle – one who is sent out on missions of preaching and teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Disciple – a follower of Jesus Christ, learning from Him in order to make other disciples.

Verse 14 – Simon, whom He also named Peter, and Andrew his brother; James and John; Philip and Bartholomew;

Verse 15 – Matthew and Thomas; James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called the Zealot;

Verse 16 – Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot who also became a traitor.

Sometimes the disciples are called by different names: Peter was often called Simon or Cephas; Matthew is also known as Levi; Bartholomew is thought to be the same person as Nathanael (John 1:45). Judas the son of James is also called Thaddeus.

Verse 17 – And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases,

Verse 18 – as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed.

Verse 19 – And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all.

Sometimes healing has to come before you can teach, because the pain might be too extreme for the person to concentrate. And other times you may need to feed someone before you tell them about the Lord. Teaching isn’t always first, sometimes it’s trust that has to come first.

The Beatitudes

Verse 20 – Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciple, and said: “Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.

Matthew adds, “in spirit.” Blessed are you with humble hearts who love and show mercy. Not placing yourself above others because of your possessions.

Verse 21 – Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.

Matthew makes this more clear: Blessed are you who hunger after righteousness,” for you shall be filled. And those who weep now, you shall be comforted.

Verse 22 – Blessed are you when men hate you, and when they exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake.

If you are a true Christian, you will be persecuted for Christ’s sake.

Verse 23 – Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, for in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.

Verse 24 – “But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation.

If you are trying to find fulfillment through riches, wealth, and possessions, that may be the only reward you receive. Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:33 to “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all these other things will be added unto you.”

Verse 25 – Woe to you who are full, for you shall hunger. Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.

He’s not talking about food. This is speaking about those living their lives in sin to the fullest, thinking “this is great,” but always feeling empty inside. There will come a day of reckoning.

Verse 26 – Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for so did their fathers to the false prophets.

The friends of this world are enemies of God.

Verse 27 – “But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,

Verse 28 – “Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you.

Those two verses are probably the hardest for us to actually do.

Verse 29 – “To him who strikes you on the one cheek offer the other also. And from him who takes your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either.

Christians are to love those who hate them and pray for those who use them. The striking us on one cheek and turning the other cheek also, means we don’t seek revenge when people are mean to us.

Verse 30 – “Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back.

Lending or giving not expecting anything in return. This doesn’t mean allowing people to come in your house and rob you.

Verse 31 – “And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.

Treat people how you want to be treated.

Verse 32 – “But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them.

Our standards and principles must rise above the ordinary level of habit, custom, which prevail in the world.

Verse 33 – “And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same.

Christians are to practice a deeper selfless love.

Verse 34 – “And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back.

Verse 35 – “But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Highest. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.

People can be ungrateful when you help them, but Jesus wants us to know, “Our reward does not come from them; it comes from Him!” He also wants us to know that it is His goodness to those who are ungrateful and evil, that will turn their hearts towards Him.

Verse 36 – “Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.

Verse 37 – “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven.

Verse 38 – “Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”

Nowhere is this verse talking about money! So when you hear this to get you to give or pay your tithes, “Please stop!” A loving spirit, demonstrates that a person has received God’s forgiveness. Measuring involves weighing and judging. Be fair to others, because the measure you use will return to you. If you are generous, generosity will be given back to you in full measure. If you are stingy and uncharitable person, such will be the standards by which you are judged.

Has God been merciful to you; has He forgiven you much; has He blessed your life over and over? Then treat others the same way God has treated you. Your reward is from Him!

Parable of the Blind Leading the Blind

Verse 39 – And He spoke a parable to them: “Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall in a ditch?

Verse 40 – “A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone who is perfectly trained will be like his teacher.

Spiritual teachers that are blind to the truth will lead others astray. A person will go no further spiritually than the teacher.

Verse 41 – “And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the plank in your own eye?

This is a person that harshly criticizes a small weakness (speck) in another person, while overlooking a huge fault with themselves – hypocrite.

Verse 42 – “Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove the speck that is in your eye; when you yourself do not see the plank that is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck that is in your brother’s eye.

Verse 43 – “For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.

Verse 44 – “For every tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a bramble bush.

Verse 45 – “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.

What kind of fruit is determined from what kind of tree it comes from. A person’s actions and words show what kind of heart they have, good or evil.

Parable of Two Foundations

Verse 46 – “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord; and do not do the things which I say?

Verse 47 – “Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like:

Verse 48 – “He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock.

Verse 49 – “But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great.”

Do you ever wonder why some Christians can go through horrific tragedies or hardships, and come out of them stronger than ever?These are those who are consistent in their belief in Jesus Christ. The difference between a life that can withstand the storms of life and one that cannot, is whether one comes to Christ and hears His words and also acts on His teachings.