Hide in His faithfulness

Chapter 9

Good Monday Morning to this week 9 of 2021

How does one find and write about “only one” verse to write about in Hebrews? There is so much wisdom shown in and through this book.

And now we have run into his heart to hide ourselves in his faithfulness. This is where we find his strength and comfort, for he empowers us to seize what has already been established ahead of time—an unshakeable hope! 19 We have this certain hope like a strong, unbreakable anchor holding our souls to God himself. Our anchor of hope is fastened to the mercy seat Hebrews 6. 18-19 TPT

The consolation (comfort after loss, disappointment or distress), received from God, is strong enough to support us, His people, under their heaviest trials. Here is a refuge for all who flee to the mercy of God according to the covenant of grace, laying aside all other confidences.

Though we be as ship at sea, tossed up and down and in danger of being cast away, we need an anchor to keep us sure and steady. First we experience his consolation as we hide in his faithfulness. Out of this place of protection, tent of his faithfulness we find, this certain hope, strong and unbreakable, as an anchor in the storms of this time empowering us to seize what is promised and lies ahead of us.

Wishing a very good start to this week!

Philemon

Sown in peace

Chapter 8

Good Monday Morning to this week 8 of 2021

Today from the book of James

The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. James 3:18

St Mary’s Catholic Church in Umbarger, Texas, was an unlikely place for an international work of art. But toward the end of World War II, seven Italian prisoners of war, who were being held at a large camp nearby, were chosen to help decorate the church’s plain brick walls.

The prisoners were reluctant to aid their captors, but they agreed on the condition that their efforts be considered a contribution toward Christian brotherhood and understanding. But as they worked on their paintings and a woodcarving of the Last Supper, one of the POWs later recalled, “A spontaneous stream of good feelings began almost at once to flow among us.” No one spoke of the war or the past because “we were here for a work of peace and love.”

Our lives are filled with unlikely settings for introducing God’s peace. We can feel imprisoned by hard feelings, strained relationships, and confining circumstances. But peace has the power to break out anywhere. James reminded us that “the wisdom that is from above is . . . peaceable, gentle, willing to yield . . . . The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. James 3:17-18

The best peacemakers are those who know the peace of God.

Wherever we are today, ask God to use you as His peacemaker.

Wishing a good start to this new week!

Philemon

Peace within

Chapter 7

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1. Peter 5.7

Good Monday Morning to this week 7 of 2021

There is no question that we live in a high-pressured time, we have responsibilities, personal expectations, work, family and alongside many personal goals. The further and the longer this pandemic goes on, the more anxiety is around, not knowing of how the illness or the consequences will change us or augment anxiety. Often anxiety can be like an inner pressure-cooker.

King Solomon wrote: “Anxiety in the heart of a person causes dejection, but a good word will turn it into joy.” The Hebrew word and thinking we find for dejection – “yashchenah”, has three different meanings, depending on how the word is read. It can mean:

1. to suppress.
2. to ignore.
3. to articulate.

A first level – Suppression

Suppression can be necessary in terms of both ourselves, and of the situation. Very often we become so obsessed with a situation that we forget that there are other important and issues. Recognizing this can lessen its intensity. The problem may still be there, but it has been cut down to size and no longer threatens to crush us. This all in regard to anxiety.

Another level – Disassociating

Ignoring like in separating ourselves from it, disassociating from it. The lesson here is that the mind is never empty. According to the laws of physics, nature abhors a vacuum, and emptiness is going to attract something. Therefore we remove ourselves from the negative by ignoring it, separating ourselves from it, and embracing “the God” perspective

A third level – Articulating

Is this where Peter comes in? Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you!

“If there is anxiety in the heart of a person, articulate it, speak about it, and a good word will bring joy. We need to have people in our lives who we respect and to whom we turn for advice. In the Torah the idea has often been advocated, of having someone to speak with, finding a counselor, someone with whom you can speak and who can help give you guidance. When we speak about something, we bring it out into the open and in Peter’s words we bring it to the Creator.

He who best can do something about it. With renewed strength and perspective we walk through anxiety.

In Psalm 55.22 it says, “cast your burdens/anxiety upon the Lord, he shall sustain thee!

Wishing you peace within!

Philemon

God’s time is Patience

Chapter 6

Good Monday Morning to this week 6 of 2021

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3.9

Peter continues to answer the mocking of the false teachers. They ask, “Where is this coming Jesus promised?” They teach that it’s been too long, He is not coming. The first reminder was to remember that God is not bound to human time. For God, a thousand years is like a day and vice versa. God is not subjected to our limitations of time, or even our confusion about it, or the way we get stressed about it.

Peter insists that this implies in a equal way, as to the question of time, it implies to his promises. God is not slow in keeping His promises, He the one who set the schedule. He cannot be “late.” nor ahead of time. Instead, God keeps these His promised, every promise at His, God’s time.

For us this feeling of being delayed, can mean the opposite, it is a witness of God’s patience not his tardiness. In His love-driven patience, God is willing to give more time for the fulfillment of the promises and the enfolding of His coming Kingdom. In the heart of God is that none be lost, not even “one of the 100 sheep” as in another parabol. In His sovereignty and power God decided not to demand by force. Peter shares and show us this exactly, God’s heart for his people. Mercifully God is creating more space and time for the fulfillment of His promises.

This thought fills me with hope, it’s not just God’s patience, but His time creating more space for the fulfillment of His promises!

Wishing you a good start to this new week!

Philemon

Confidence

Chapter 5

Good Monday Morning to this week 5 of 2021

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. 1 John 5. 14-15

This is the confidence – the liberty of access and speech, that if we ask anything according to his will, that is, which he has promised in his word.

His word is a revelation of his will, in the things which concern salvation and redemption. All that God has promised we are justified in expecting; and what he has promised, and we expect, we should pray for.

Prayer is the language of God. He who is been received of God speaks this language. He calls God Abba, Father, in the true spirit. Prayer also is the language of dependence on God. Faith and prayer are not boldly to advance claims upon God; we must take heed that what we ask and believe for is agreeable to the revealed will of God.

What we find promised, that we may plead.

This phrase “according to his will.” is only used two other times in the New Testament. In Luke 12, a parable is told about a servant who did not act “according to his [master’s] will” and received judgment. In Hebrews 2:4, the author mentions gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed “according to his will.”

Verses such as this clear up the common misconception that God promises to give us “absolutely anything” we ask for, no matter what. God is not a vending machine, or a robot. He acts according to His ways, not ours.

He hears our prayers, but it should come as no surprise that He responds to those prayers “according to His will”. This all reminds me of the other 3 principles; Ask, Seek, Knock!

“Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. Matthew 7.7

Pray, as in asking.
Seek, with diligence .
Knock, persevere importunately in that diligence.

All in great confidence as we continue to approach God!

Yes, I have this confidence, but in regard to the many people I know, living in great poverty, and praying exactly these prayers, I conclude that without the faith in the confidence I am not completely satisfied. These verses remain a challenge to me as I think and pray for many in great need.

Wishing you a good start to this week!

blessings

Philemon

Walk in it!

Chapter 4

Good Monday Morning to this week 4 of 2021

And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, that, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it. 2. John 1.6

Second John was written around 95 A.D. from Ephesus where John served after being released from exile on the island of Patmos. If there is one thing to summarize the message of 2 John, it’s walking with God. So how are we to walk with God?

Twenty-five people embarked on a trip from Urfa to Hebron about 900km from Turkey to Israel, following Abraham’s legendary walk from what may have been his place of birth, to the place he is believed to be buried. This journey, from womb to tomb, laid the foundation for a visionary and hopeful project: the development of walking trails approximating the travels of Abraham and his family in Mesopotamia, who shared hospitality with people they met along the way. Walkers foster friendships across sometimes challenging divides, enriching understanding of this region and its peoples.

Walking is a tool for deepening understanding of self and other; it allows an experience of culture that is unattainable from the seat of a bus. The simple act of walking has connected people around the world since time immemorial. The Abraham Path Initiative has seeded walking trails here in order to reintroduce this storied region as one of irrepressibly hospitable people. This walk evokes the beloved regional origin story that shows up in everyday life: residents welcome strangers in honor of Abraham, a spiritual ancestor of over half of humanity.

By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. Hebrews 11.8

This verse defines the kind walk John speaks of. Here, it means obeying or walking God’s commandments, also in faith! Love is not merely an emotion, but requires actions based on truth and movement along with a selfless focus on other people

John re-emphasizes that this command is one the reader should already be familiar with and apply by being able to “walk in it” or obey it.

Wishing you a good walk of faith in this week!

Philemon

Truth

Chapter 3

Good Monay Morning to this week 3 of 2021

I’m following in the pattern, one verse to one book of scripture. Today to 3. John:

I greatly rejoiced when some of the brethren arrived and testified to the truth of your life, as indeed you do follow the truth. (3 John 1:3)

Speaking of being consistent in his actions:

He showed the truth in his life, what impressed John was not that he knew the truth, but that he followed the truth. He lived it. He had a consistent life.

Truth’ involves both the quality of “faithfulness, fidelity, loyalty, sincerity, veracity”, and that of “agreement with fact or reality”.

Truth is the property of being in accord with fact or reality. In everyday language, truth is typically ascribed to things that aim to represent reality or otherwise correspond to it, such as beliefs, propositions, and declarative sentences.

Merriam Webster defines truth as :

: the truth
: the real facts about something
: the things that are true
: the quality or state of being true
: a statement or idea that is true or accepted as truth. In many Judeo-Christian churches the definition of truth is based upon statements made by new testament authors and the messiah. Truth, reality; the unveiled reality lying at the basis of and agreeing with an appearance; the manifested, the veritable essence of matter. The Hebrew thought and the culture is the driving force behind all of the translations. The word translates as truth, true, truly, right, faithfully, assured, assuredly , established, faithful, sure, verity, firmness, faithfulness, sureness, reliability, stability and continuance.

While that gives us a little more revelation, it is still not concrete, actually looking deeper we find out that truth is not antiquated or fulfilled.

Truth was, is, and is to come! This is wording we are very familiar with:
Who is, who was and who is and who is coming!

A great concept to tackle the concept of truth in our daily lives!

Wishing a blessed week, full of truth!

Philemon

Conviction

Chapter 2

Good Monday Morning to this week 2 of 2021

This year i’m planning on taking 52 verses out of 52 books of the Bible.

Jude 1:21 – keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life.

Keep yourselves in the love of God  ….

Jude’s words are but the echo of the tenderer words of his Master and ours, when He said, ‘As My Father hath loved Me, so have I loved you. Abide ye in My love. If ye keep My commandments ye shall abide in My love.’

The words are in great harmony with the general tenor of Bible and Jesus language: , and, in “continue ye in my love” or in Pauls language “the love of Christ constraineth us”.

looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ ….

The verb implies, that the “mercy” is thought of as in the future. There is no ground, however, for limiting it to this significance, and it may well include all acts of mercy to which men were looking forward in patient expectation, as in store for them during the remainder of their earthly pilgrimage.

Thoughts for Every-Day Living writes it beautifully:

“Keep yourselves in the love of God” does not mean keep yourselves loving God, but keep believing and rejoicing that God loves you. “Conviction” is a good word there, because it comes from con and victum—conquered, or vinculum—a chain. Be conquered, be enchained, by the thought that God loves you. “Keep” means guard, protect, as in a fortress. Live in this castle, and no enemy of doubt or fear can by any means hurt you.

Wishing you a great sense of conviction of God’s love for you as you start into this new week.

Philemon

Reversal

Good Monday Morning to this first and week Nr. 1 of 2021

Chapter 1

And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Revelation 21.5

God is making all things new? Is this a prophecy, a wish, a desire, a vision ….

The first and only time that God addresses the seer, or speaks again after the verse in which he names himself as the Alpha and Omega. The almost unbroken silence assigned to God in the Revelation corresponds to the Egyptian idea of the divine Reason needing no tongue but noiselessly directing mortal things by righteousness. (Expositor’s Greek Testament)

A new conception of God. Often referred to a “new name” of God, for us to discover yet another part of God as he let’s this be known to us.

A a new spiritual body, a corruptible exchanged for the incorruptible.

A new character with new dispositions and habits.

A new social condition. Probably nothing will be more marked in the Kingdom of God than the new and then total reversals of the judgments and patterns of injustice currently prevailing .

A new dwelling place. Not literally, no need that we should take it that way. But as the other changes take place so with these changes result therefrom. In Psalm 107 there is much emphasis of this reversal. He turneth the wilderness into a standing water, and the dry grounds into water springs.” So is it for the righteous. So many are the aids to the faith, that, given a new moral character, there will be a new dwelling place.

The regeneration of the earth on which they dwelt is fulfilled in  Psalm 67: “All the people praise thee, O God; then shall the earth yield her increase; God shall bless us, and all the ends of the world shall fear him.”

Now, of all this, and much more is part of this this blessed spring tide. This spring tide needs to carry a seed. Have we, then, the seed of the life of God within us?

“I am come,” said the Lord, “that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” S.C

Lord, send us this spring tide, carrying the seed of life with these reversals for this earth, your creation, all people and nations, for us, create in us, create with us this “new thing” in this new year 2021.

Wishing all to see more of these “new things” and reversals this year.

Philemon

Make straight our paths!

Chapter 52

Good Monday Morning to this week 53 of 2020

Proverbs 3:5-6, ESV Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

It will be hard to grasp this year 2020 in a few words or a short review, I won’t even try, but it does echo in the verse of Proverbs. “lean not on your own understanding”. Often when we thought things were going to change for the good, another shockwave of announcements reached our ears.

It has been very interesting to see how many Bible verses sounded different, reading them was different this year. Actually, I understood some of the writers a lot better. Let’s look at a few verses coming to the end of this year 2020.

Romans 12:1-2, NIV Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God – this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.

We were challenged not to conform to the world, not to all the newest announcements nor to the latest theories of Christian friends sending out their newest conspiracy theories. We were also challenged not to fear, not for ourselves or our loved ones.

Renewal of mind … this was a constant for me. A constant checking, comparing, reading and seeking God and His Truth. In the renewal of mind, there was much new information and many new concepts to handle. Then followed the testing and approving of what I thought what the right way or God’s will for the ministry or my life or the lives of my family.

Isaiah 40:31, ESV but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.

This verse a great encouragement to wait, have patience and let my strength and faith be renewed, not to grow weary. Well, yes I did grow weary, very weary as many of you I assume as well. But this year showed even more that when all our common remedies against weakness don’t function we turn back to spiritual applications and draw our strength from there.

Ecclesiastes 3:11, NIV He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.

Oh yes, everything has it’s time. Eternity in the hearts of men, I am sure we’re going to hear amazing stories of personal and individual change that happened 2021. When all the noise of Corona or other important matters were pushed aside, great changes started to happen in so many. I heard of many very good decisions being made, even in some of their darkest moments.

To conclude with Lamentations is very fitting to 2020. The following verse is so raw, so honest and right to the point and so true!

Lamentations 3:22-24, NASB The unfailing love of the LORD never ends! By his mercies, we have been kept from complete destruction. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each day. I say to myself, “The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”

Yes I will hope in Him!

I wish you a very blessed start into this new and last week of 2020!
Philemon