The Shepherd Part 3

The Bible depicts the church in many different ways, including a family and a place for fellowship, but it is also a flock.

Psalm 100:3 – Know that the LORD, He is God; it is He who made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture.

John 10:10 – “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly. (Verse 11) “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. (Verse 12) “But he who is a hireling and not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them.

(Verse 13) “The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep. (Verse 14) “I am the good shepherd, and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.”

Sheep can’t do much without a shepherd.

A good shepherd provides.

Psalm 23:1 – The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. (The word “want” in the Hebrew means “lack.” I shall not lack.) (Verse 2) He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. (Verse 3) He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.

The Lord is a shepherd so He’s a provider. He always provides what we need. The Jews wanted a political leader, but they needed a Savior. The first step in believing He’s our provider is bringing the tithe to the house of God. Under, “He’s a provider,” is “He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside still waters.”

Green pastures and still waters: Every believer’s life should be characterized by these two things: Contentment and peace! Green pastures for sheep would be contentment. And still waters represent peace. We sit by the still waters in worship and eat from the green pastures during the Word. This is one of the reasons why we attend church.

“He makes me lie down.” Has God ever had to make you lie down? Are you a person that always has to be doing something? Do you always have to be busy? It’s alright to stop and be still by still waters. It’s alright to do nothing once in a while and just take in calmness.

He restores. 

“He restores my soul.” Our mind, will, and emotions. When something bad happens, we can be crushed. It’s the Lord that restores our soul, mind, will, and emotions from the stress.

He leads. 

“He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.” We’re put in right standing through grace, but I also want to walk in right standing with God. I want to be pleasing to the Lord, don’t you? I need His leading and guidance.

Shepherds don’t “drive” sheep, they lead them. Yes, sometimes they herd them with sheepdogs, but the best way is to lead them. Did you know that each shepherd has a way of calling his own sheep? The sheep will only follow the voice they know. And Jesus said, “My sheep know My voice!” His true sheep will only follow Him.

A good shepherd protects the flock.

Psalm 23:4 – Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. (Verse 5) You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over.

Death is the biggest fear of humans. Jesus takes the biggest fear we have an annihilates it. Why? Because He conquered death at the cross!

Jesus is with us in the battle.

“For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.” Why would His rod and staff comfort us? Because He doesn’t use His rod and His staff on us! He doesn’t hit the sheep. He hits the wolf, the enemy! What’s the wolf afraid of? He’s afraid of the shepherd. He’s not afraid of us. A wolf is not afraid of the sheep. He’s afraid of the Shepherd and that’s why we stay right beside the Shepherd and don’t wander off!

He blesses us in the battle. 

Psalm 23:5 – You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; We would prefer that He prepares a table for us “after” He kills our enemies. However, He does it while in the presence of them. Why? Because He’s not afraid of the enemy. And sometimes He calms the turmoil around us and sometimes He just calms the sheep. 

He refreshes us in the battle.

(Verse 5) You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. The effects of oil represent two things in Scripture: refreshing and strength. The Holy Spirit refreshes us and strengthens us! In the midst of the battle, we are refreshed and strengthened. Jesus fills us until it runs over!

He promises.

(Verse 6) Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell int the house of the LORD forever.

Goodness, mercy, and eternal life. These are promises from the Lord. That is what our Shepherd promises every believer. In Hebrew, the word follow means “Chase!” Surely goodness and mercy shall “chase” me! God’s goodness and mercy will catch you if you just stop running.

1 John 2:25 – And this is the promise that He has promised us – eternal life. 

Hebrews 10:23 – Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.

Ezekiel 34:12 – “As a shepherd seeks out his flock on the day he is among his scattered sheep, so will I seek out My sheep and deliver them from all the places where they were scattered on a cloudy and dark day.”

Think about that verse: Do you remember in Scripture that it said how dark it got the day Jesus was crucified? The Good Shepherd gave his life for the scattered sheep on a cloudy and dark day! Amen!!

 

 

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Jesus, the Human

The last study, part 1, was on Jesus the builder, even before He walked the earth and is still a builder today. However, this is the only aspect that Jesus was while on the earth that He is not now – human. He was, however, a human for thirty-three and one-half years He knows what it is like to be us. Jesus did not settle for the illusion of identification. He became a human; He was born; He was a toddler; He was in a family; He went to work, like all of us.

Hebrews 2:14 – Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil. (NLT version) Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form.

So even though He was human while on this earth, how does that help us today? Hebrews 2:17 – Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. (Verse 18) For in that He Himself suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted. 

Because Jesus was tempted in all things, He is able to help us in our temptations and weaknesses.

Hebrews 4:15, 16 – For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. (Verse 16) Let us, therefore, come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

As our High Priest, Jesus was tempted in all points which makes Him merciful and sympathetic to our temptations and needs. When a person can sympathize with us, immediately there is a bond because they know how we feel or how we struggle. Jesus was tempted in all areas and all points. He understands how we feel! Don’t ever think that our Lord and Savior doesn’t know what we go through because He lived it yet without sin.

Satan tries to convince people that they are worse than anyone else. He will tell people nobody is as bad as them. That’s how he keeps people from even going to the house of God. He tells them that they are so bad that they shouldn’t even try to go and sit among the righteous. He lies because he is the father of lies. However, Jesus says, “Come. I understand who you are and what you’ve done. Come to my throne of mercy and grace and receive forgiveness!”

Because Jesus was human: Jesus understands relationships.

Mark 6:3 – “Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us?” And they were offended at him.

So we know He had four brothers and at least two sisters, maybe more. He knew what it was like to have siblings. He also understood what it was like to be single and can sympathize, if need be,  with those who are. But here’s the amazing thing:

He even knows and understands marriage. Even though He was never married in the sense of literally having a wife, yet He does. The Bride of Christ! The church is who Jesus is married to. So yes, He understands marriage and what it means to be faithful, committed, and dedicated. One step further – He knows what it’s like for His spouse to be unfaithful! He also knows what it’s like to have children and even disobedient children! There is nothing that we can’t talk to Him about. He understands what it’s like to have a family.

Mark 3:31 – Then His brothers and His mother came and standing outside they sent to Him, calling Him. (Verse 32) And a multitude was sitting around Him; and they said to Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers are outside seeking You.” (Verse 33) But He answered them saying, “Who is My mother, or My brothers?” (Verse 34) And He looked around in a circle at those who sat about Him, and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! (Verse 35) “For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.”

Have you ever felt that even though you have blood family but they are not really family? Why did Jesus not get up and go to his family? But remember what His family did to Him in Mark 3:21 – But when His own people (family) heard about this, they went out to lay (seize) hold of Him, for they said, “He is out of His mind.” They said He was crazy!

Has your family ever thought you were something you’re not? Jesus said the ones that do the will of My Father are His family, so He understands when our own family disowns us. It doesn’t matter because as believers we have a more loving family and a heavenly Father that understands and loves us.

Jesus also understands when all of our friends desert us when we need them the most, as some family members do. He understands what it’s like to be betrayed by a close friend. There is nothing that’s going on in our lives that we can’t talk to him about.

Jesus understands work.

Jesus worked as a carpenter longer than He was in the ministry. He understands hard work. Tradition says He probably started with His father at twelve years old and worked until He was thirty. I imagine He was in excellent shape and only God and He knew what all He built. And He more than likely had callouses and blisters on His hands.

He also knew what it was like to own His own business. He knows what it’s like to work with or for lost people who lie and cheat. He also knew and knows what it’s like with church people who lie and cheat. There is nothing about our work we can’t talk to Him about.

Jesus understands pain.

We all go through pain, emotional and physical. We’ve all had both. Look at the emotional pain at this verse: Isaiah 53:3 – He is despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

And physical pain: Isaiah 53:5 – But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes, we were healed.

Jesus was mocked and despised because of Him being a carpenter, His birth, being a Jew so He knows what it’s like to be mocked and ridiculed. Jesus was beaten by three different garrisons of guards; they plucked His beard; they not only beat Him with their fists but with rods; they drove a crown of thorns down on His head; they flogged Him over and over; they nailed spikes in His wrists and feet; and then hung Him on a cross until He died. He was tortured to death!

So please don’t ever think our precious Jesus doesn’t understand physical pain, because He knows more pain than you or I will ever go through in this life!

Think about this: Joseph, Jesus’ father, died at some point during Jesus life. Jesus could have raised His earthly father from the dead, but He didn’t. Do you think maybe it was so that He would know how it felt to lose a parent in order to be sympathetic toward us when we lose a parent?

Jesus knows our emotions and what we go through with physical pain, so go to Him, He understands.

 

 

Jesus, The Same Yesterday, Today, & Forever Part 1

The Builder

What was Jesus’ occupation when He lived on this earth? Mark 6:3 – “Is this not the carpenter…”

Carpenter in the Creek – tekton/tek-tone. One who uses various materials (wood, stone, and metal) in building – builder, carpenter. There is every reason to believe that in Biblical times one who was regarded as a Tekton would be skilled in the use of wood and stone possibly even metal.

Hebrews 13:8 – Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. If Jesus was a builder when He was on this earth, do you think He’s still a builder today? Do you think He has a plan, a blueprint for our lives? Also, when Jesus was on this earth, He was a Teacher. Does He still teach us today?

Jesus also was a healer! Does He still heal today? If Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever, then all these attributes of Jesus can be claimed for today!

Yesterday

Is God the God of the past? I hope so. Just because someone has a bad past, it’s no indication they have a bad future. God is eternal, so He’s God of the past also.

Hebrews 11:3 – By faith, we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

The word “framed” is a building term. Jesus is the word, Jesus framed the worlds. Think about this: The earth is the exact distance from the sun in order for us to have life. However, He didn’t just frame the world: Psalm 139:15 – My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in secret… David wrote that, talking about when he was yet in the womb! God made our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual frame.

Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the thoughts that I have toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” God has a good plan for our lives no matter what a person has gone through in the past. He is the Master builder and has it all laid out perfectly!

Here is the problem with our past, it hurts and tries to affect our future. We can either run from our past or learn from it, but don’t wallow in it! God can take our past and can build it into a good future.

Today

Jesus is still a builder today. Luke 19:9 – And Jesus said to him (Zacchaeus), “Today salvation has come to this house,…” 2 Corinthians 6:2 – For He says, “In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in the day of salvation I have helped you.”Behold now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation. God is a God of today! When God speaks to us, He wants a commitment that day.

Deuteronomy 11:2 – “Know today that I did not speak with your children,…” Deuteronomy 11:8 – “Therefore you shall keep every commandment which I have commanded you today,…” Deuteronomy11:13 – “And it shall be that if you diligently obey My commandments which I command you today…”

God is still speaking to us today just like He spoke to the children of Israel through His prophets in the past. Only today He speaks directly to us. When He speaks we have a choice whether or not to obey His word.

Deuteronomy 26:17 – “Today you have proclaimed the LORD to be your God, and that you will walk in His ways and keep His statutes, His commandments, and His judgments, and that you will obey His voice.

So when the Lord speaks, we obey, and He works out the details. That’s His commitment to us. What we do today, will determine our tomorrow!

Forever

Matthew 16:18 – “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock, I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.”

1 Peter 2:5 – you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. We are His church, living stones. If a person refuses to obey what God has said today, they stop the building process. He’s the God of yesterday, today, and tomorrow, our future. He has an awesome plan for each of our lives!

Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever!

 

Blessed Be The Light

God begins with light. Life requires light; faith requires light. Why, because we live in dark times. Yet in the midst of darkness stems the following truths: Jesus still saves! Jesus still delivers; Jesus still heals, and Jesus is still coming back for His children!

Matthew 5:14 – “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. (Verse 15) “Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. (Verse 16) “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

When light stands next to darkness, the darkness fades. Blessed to be light by who you are. We can not be light until we discover who we are. What defines us? Are we defined by our past or by our circumstances? You can be if you choose to. Or are we defined by what others say about us?

Here is the good news: Christ defines us! We are defined by the Spirit inside of us. We are defined by His covenant. We are not defined by our failures, we are defined by His forgiveness. We are not even defined by what we do for God. We are defined by what God already did for us. The cross, the tomb, the upper room, His blood, His word, by the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit defines us.

Galatians 2:20 – “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

How we respond to what defines us will determine whether our light will overcome the darkness in this hour here on earth. Jesus said, “You are the light of the world!” You are the church of Jesus Christ and the gates of hell shall not prevail. That’s who Jesus said we are. Every believer has this light that they let shine to the world around them.

Too many times when people allow circumstances to rule their lives, they forget who they are. The enemy may come against us in many ways and many times, but Jesus says we are victorious in Him!

Jesus is not coming back for a defeated church. He’s coming back for a glorious, thriving church. Shouldn’t we all remind ourselves that we are blood washed, blood-bought, children of the living God! We’re far from perfect, but God calls the willing not the perfect.

We are blessed to be light by removing the obstacles. No one hides a light. When it’s in you, you let it shine to light up the darkness that surrounds. We can not be light until we embrace the following: Today’s complacency is tomorrows captivity! There is no such thing as comfortable Christianity. We are what we tolerate. God didn’t give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind.

There is a spiritual battle to turn off our light and some have allowed this to happen. I believe the church slept for decades while secular garbage took over. All the while the church sat back and didn’t get involved. They thought for too long that being in government was not their concern. I’ve talked to Christians that don’t even bother to vote. It’s called “complacency!” Just let others fight that battle.

If we as Christians are supposed to be “Light of the world,” then how is that going to happen if we continue not to do battle? Christians, listen up! Don’t drink the kool-aid! We have tolerated evil too long by compromising what God calls sin and what society calls sin. Society says anything goes. Just because society accepts a life-style does not mean God does. Read His word. It’s plain as day and night. He does not change, people do!

All of these principalities and evil spirits that are running rampant over this earth are still not as powerful as the “Living Holy Spirit of All Mighty God!” They can be defeated!

Zachariah 4:6 – “Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, saith the LORD.”

It’s time for Christians to stand up and be light with courage and conviction! For every devil that rises up against you, there is a Mightier God that rises up to take up battle with you!

1 John 2:8 – Again, a new commandment I wrote to you, which thing is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away, and the true light is already shining.

Blessed to be light by where you stand. There are not “many ways to heaven!” There is only one way to heaven and only one wat to be saved; one way to eternal life; one way to be born again, and that one way has the name above all other names in which every knee shall bow and that name is Jesus!

Psalm 89:14 – Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; mercy and truth go before Your face. We stand on that! We stand on the certainty that Christ is the only way.

In today’s society where most are looking to their government to solve all their problems, that government will never take care of you like our heavenly Father does and will. That government didn’t die for you to bring you life! God is God all by Himself.

Blessed to be light by what we do. Do you know that every time we help someone we are letting our light shine? Jesus changed the world because of who He was, what He said, and what He did! Let us do likewise.

Ephesians 5:8 – For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light. 

There is no such thing as “Silent Christianity.” We magnify our light when we do for others. Others need to know: Jesus still heals; Jesus still delivers, and Jesus still saves!

Matthew 6:33 – “But seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.”

Let your light shine among men!

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it!

 

Following Jesus In A Self-Centered World

Have you ever taken a “selfie?” When I was growing up, no one turned the camera on themselves. Most of the pictures taken today are selfies and then posted on some type of media. Now we live in a “Selfie” absorbed world. If you are in a group picture, you know you look for yourself first, we all do.

However, any pictures we take today can be filtered to make the image much better than what it really is. Because we portray a filter with things, the less authentic we actually appear to be. Technology and social media are changing the way we interact.

How is technology changing our relationships?

There are a lot of good things about this new technology though. For instance: we can “face-time” with people who don’t live close. But there are many unintended consequences and here are a few:

People are starting to fear unfiltered communications.

There is an entire generation that is fearful of not showing their best self. Very few people talk on the phone anymore, they text. When doing this, it makes us in control of our response. We either answer right then or wait until a more convenient time.

Most 18 to 25-year-olds don’t like talking on the phone at all. This is all about filtering what is said when it is said, and how it is said. They have total control.

But what does the Bible say about authenticity? 2 Corinthians, Chapter 3 is a reflection of when Moses ascended to Mount Sinai and he received the 10 Commandments. When he came down off the mountain, his face was glowing and he put on a veil to cover his face.

Read in the New Testament, the reason Moses put on the veil was to keep the people from seeing that the “glory” was starting to fade away. It was like “putting a filter” on the picture that he wanted everyone else to see. In 2 Corinthians, the Apostle Paul wanted the Corinthians to know how much greater the New Covenant was than the Old Covenant.

2 Corinthians 3:13 – unlike Moses, who put a veil over his face so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the end of what was passing away. (Verse 14) But their minds were hardened. For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament because the veil is taken away in Christ. (Verse 15) But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. (When the Old Covenant was read in the Sanogogues, there were unbelieving Jews who could not see the truth.)

2 Corinthians 4:4 – whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe…

22 Corinthians 3:16 – Nevertheless, when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 

However, by nature, most are not transparent people, they are insecure. We try to cover up our faults in front of others, and most would rather conceal their sin instead of confessing it also.

So, what image of ourselves do we show other people? Are we authentic all the time? What image do we portray to others? Is it the real you?

I think this is especially true in the church. People want others to think they are the best of Christians all the time when in reality they don’t follow any of Christ’s ways outside of the church building.

A veil that first covers the face eventually covers the heart.

What starts as a superficial covering, becomes a spiritual condition. If people are not going, to be honest with themselves and others, they more than likely will never be honest with God in their relationship with Him.

There is an entire generation growing up that has no idea who the real self is. When they are eventually exposed, we see the anger that reaches rage. They have tried to hide behind a veil for so long that when they finally are exposed, they fly into a rage. I’ve seen this in teenagers and adults.

Christians come under pressure also to prove they are so spiritual all the time when their real world is falling apart. Why are there so many people today afraid to show who they really are? They are afraid others may not like the real them. They fake their true personalities because it’s so easy on social media. They may have over three-hundred friends on facebook but in reality, only two friends that truly know who they are. But when they post something about themselves, or a “selfie” they get hundreds of likes and all these people telling them how pretty or great they are. This meets their immediate need for attention. They may impress people through their strengths, but they should be connecting through their weaknesses. We connect when we are open and honest with first ourselves and then others.

If you find yourself living behind a veil, go to Christ because He is the only One that can remove the veil. 2 Corinthians 3:16 – But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 

The person doesn’t take the veil away, Jesus does it after turning to Him. But a person must turn to Christ first and stop pretending. Turn away from the “Me” and turn to Jesus. When our identity is in Him, we can stop looking for approval from others.

Don’t be obsessed with what others think of you. How about being obsessed with what God thinks about you. He’s the only approval you need. Surrender to Christ and He will remove the veil. We are not who others say we are, we are who Christ says we are.

2 Corinthians 5:20 – Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God.

We are the light of this world and are filled with the very same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead!

When the veil is removed, suddenly we are authentic, transparent, not trying to be something we’re not. The true person God created us to be will shine through!

 

 

Treasures Of The Heart

The Treasure of the Kingdom

Matthew 13:44 – “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid, and for joy, over it, he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.

Most think that the treasure that the man finds is the kingdom and he gives up everything he has to gain that treasure. I don’t think that is accurate and here’s why: First, you can’t hide the kingdom and second you can’t buy it. If the treasure is the kingdom then nothing in that verse lines up.

You can’t find it because we didn’t find God. God found us! We love Him because He first loved us. The Bible says that we were blinded to the gospel so we could not have found the kingdom on our own.

You can’t hide it because it’s too big! We might be able to hide the light that is in us, but we can’t hide the entire kingdom of God.

We defiantly can’t buy it! It’s not for sale. This parable is not about us attaining the kingdom or us doing or giving enough to obtain it.

Here is the meaning of this parable: The field is the world. The man is Jesus and the treasure is you and me! So that old tradition that people may have been taught that the treasure is the kingdom makes no sense. You and me are the treasure! Jesus is the One that gave up everything to buy us. Ver plainly in 1 Corinthians, it says we are not our own, we were bought with a price.

This is not a parable about us doing something to get the kingdom. This is a parable about Jesus doing something to get the kingdom and people are the kingdom!

Jesus found us and paid the price for us. We are a treasure to Him. And notice, He bought the whole field. He paid the price for the entire world. So how much are we worth? The value of anything is how much someone is willing to pay for it. Everyone that comes to Christ is worth the same amount which is the “The blood of Jesus!” The highest price that’s ever been paid for any one person, was paid by Jesus for you and me. For joy, He bought the whole field!

Do you know why God found you? Because He values you and was looking for you! You are the treasure of the kingdom.

The Treasure of the Heart

Matthew 6:21 – “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

So many pastors and others miss quote this verse: They will say, “Where your heart is, there your treasure will be also.” That’s backward! Jesus said, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Your heart will follow your treasure.

If we invest in a “stock,” we will start checking that stock, although we never did it before, but, because we put some of our treasure there, value, we put our heart there also. Make sense?

If you want your heart to be in the kingdom, put your treasure there, because your heart will follow your treasure. You are God’s treasure!

The kingdom is like a treasure, hidden in the world, and a Man, with joy, sold everything He had and bought that treasure!! The treasure is you and we should never forget it!

Why Did God…?

So many people ask why did God…? For instance: Why did God create hell? Why would a loving God send anyone to hell? Why did God create two trees in the Garden? Here’s the key to all these questions you have to remember when answering why to any of these questions: You can never answer any question about God that goes outside of His character and nature and expect to get the correct answer.

We know His nature and character through Scripture and the whole of Scripture, not just picking here and there. If a person tries to answer difficult questions about God without taking into consideration His character, they will come to the wrong conclusion of His nature.

God Is A Good God!

Psalm 119:68 – You are good, and do good; teach me Your statutes. God isn’t good because He does good. God does good because He is good. God being good is not dependant upon Him doing good, He does good because He is good. It’s because God is truth. Because God is truth He can’t lie!

This falls in line with the way people think about the Sovereignty of God. Most people think this means that God can do anything He wants to do. What it means is that He’s sovereign, because He’s the supreme ruler of the universe. But because He is who He is, He can’t act outside of His character.

Now in this same way God is love. So everything we read in Scripture we put in the basic, God is good, God is truth, and God is love.

Moses had asked God to see His glory. Here is a practical definition for glory: Glory is what you’re famous for; it’s what you’re known for. So when Moses asked God to show him His glory, he wanted God to show him what He’s famous for. What is God best at doing?

Exodus 33:18 – And he (Moses) said, “Please, show me Your glory.” (Verse 19) Then He said, “I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.”

Now we know that anything we read in the Bible about God has to line up with “God is good.” If we don’t do this, we will think that God is harsh or mean. For instance; When we read that Adam and Eve sinned, God drove them out of the Garden and gave the reason why He did it: Genesis 3:22 – Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever” – (Verse 23) therefore the LORD God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken. (Verse 24) So He drove out the man, and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.

Too many people think that God was mad at Adam and Eve and just kicked them out of the garden. No, that’s not correct. Here’s why He drove them out. Adam and Eve sinned and were now in a fallen state. They became separated from God and if they ate from the tree of life, they would live forever in a fallen state! Separated from God forever. God didn’t want that so He drove them out!

That is God’s goodness. People won’t pick up on that if they don’t have it rooted in them that “God is a good God!”

By the way: That same tree of life is in heaven and we can eat from it all we want because we will be in a redeemed state. God didn’t want Adam and Eve to stay in a fallen state.

God Is Also Just!

Isaiah 45:21 – …”And there is no other God besides Me, a just God and a Savior; there is none besides Me.” There will never be injustice with any of God’s judgments. That’s why I don’t believe that God chose some people to go to hell and some to go to heaven because that’s not just. God doesn’t choose anyone to go to hell. It’s a choice by the individual.

People still ask: Would a just God send anyone to hell? Here’s another question people ask: Would God send someone to hell that’s never had a chance to hear the gospel? Never answer these questions in your own opinion, use Scripture.

Romans 1:18 – For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, (Verse 19) because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. (manifest, to make known)

(Verse 20) For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,

God manifests Himself to every person internally and externally. God makes His presence known to every human being. That’s what this Scripture is saying. God manifests Himself by giving to every person what only God can give.

God gave us a conscience so He manifests Himself on the inside of each of us. He manifests Himself on the outside because we have His creation all around us. Conscience and creation both manifest God’s presence. Our conscience tells us there is a God. And creation tells us there is a God.

Why do you think He created a universe this big? There are stars 300 million light-years away. He wants us to walk outside and look up in awe and say, “There’s got to be a God that created all this!” Here’s another amazing thing; Nothing collided with nothing, it all stays in perfect orbit! The “Big bang” theory is still just a theory.

Did you know that God put eternity in every person’s heart? No person will ever be able to say, “No one told me.” Here’s why: Because God can come and say, “I told you!” He’s got so many ways to speak to us, including His creation. From the time we are a small child, God puts it in our hearts to wonder about Him. Every person who seeks after God will find HIm.

Proverbs 8:17 – “I love those who love Me, and those who seek Me diligently will find me.” 

Jeremiah 29:13 – And you will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. 

Matthew 7:7 – “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. (Verse 8) For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.”

Acts 17:26 – “And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us.”

God Is Love

God is a good God, He’s a just God, and He is love! 1 John 4:8 – He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. Now for the question so many ask: “Why would a loving God send anyone to hell?” Let’s look at this from a Biblical perspective. God did not create hell for people. God created hell for the devil and his angels.

Matthew 25:41 – “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: God prepared heaven for people that love Him and created hell for the devil and his angels. However, man became evil.

Isaiah 5:11 – Woe to those who rise early in the morning, that they may follow intoxicating drink; who continue until night, till wine inflames them! (Verse 12) The harp and the strings, the tambourine, and flute, and wine are in their feasts; but they do not regard the work of the LORD, nor consider the operation of His hands. (Verse 13) Therefore my people have gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge; their honorable men are famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst. 

(Verse 14) Therefore Sheol (Old Testament word for hell) has enlarged itself and opened its mouth beyond measure; Their glory and their multitude and their pomp, and he who is jubilant shall descend into it.

Hell was enlarged by necessity, not by design. Satan enlarged it by getting a third of the angels to follow him and then he got people to follow him.

Let’s look at the constant, inexcusable, rebellious rejection of a loving God that does everything right. Lucifer was the worship leader in heaven and lead a third of the angels to rebel against God. They were not created in a bad situation. God never abused them, never treated any of them bad and a third of them, including Lucifer rejected Him. That’s the first rebellious story of the rejection of God.

The second one is found in Genesis 3. God creates Adam and Eve, perfect bodies, perfect health, perfect garden, perfect marriage, perfect relationship with God and a perfect relationship with each other. And they rebelled against God.

Here’s the third story of the rejection of God: God sent His own Son to this earth who explained the Scriptures and who did nothing but good for thirty-three and one-half years. He healed people, raised people from the dead, loved on people, had dinner with sinners, never acted prideful or arrogant, and the people rejected Him so bad that they tortured Him to death.

So the answer to that question, “Would a loving God send someone to hell,? is that people send themselves to hell by the choice they make. Jesus already paid for all of our sins and all we have to do is believe in Him and we choose heaven for all eternity.

Here’s another question people ask: “Why did God create us with a free will?” You can’t truly love anyone unless you have a free will to do so.

This earth and what’s in it and on it, one day will be burned up. What is left is God’s family. He gets a family that truly loves Him! Choose to be in God’s family and we spend eternity with Him. Choose a life of rebellion and you choose not to be in His family.

My question is: Why would anyone reject a loving God? Eternity is your choice. You will never be able to blame God because God makes Himself known in and to every person in this world.