Quote for Today – Charles Finney

Quote for Today

“Many professing Christians are characterized by the fear of punishment and an unconcern for sin. True friends of God and man are more afraid of sin than of punishment. They don’t ask “If I do this, will I be punished?” Instead, they ask the question that Joseph asked: “How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” This is the spirit of a child of God…”
– Charles Finney

THE HEART – The Issue of LIFE –

THE HEART
THE ISSUE OF LIFE

“My son, forget not my law;
but let thine heart keep my commandments
PROVERBS 3:1

In the life of the authentic believer every action and word spoken is a direct revelation of the heart. While there are many Christian adherents to a teaching, a code of ethics, a dress code or outward compliance to a perceived religious concept, we read here that God is only interested in an obedience that is heart felt. It is the internal motivation that determines whether or not a thing has merit before Him. True life consists in knowing His Word and following it with our heart. Many good religious works may be done with the desire to be seen of others, to ease our conscience, or to reap some other benefit. Obedience from the heart is true worship. God sees more than just our actions; he sees the motives and intentions of our heart.

“For the Lord is the God of knowledge;
And by Him actions are weighed”
1 SAMUEL 2:3

We measure deeds by our own criteria but God sees and values things from His own perspective and heart.

“And Jesus sat over against the treasury,
and beheld HOW the people cast money into the treasury:
and many that were rich cast in much.
And there came a certain poor widow,
and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing.
And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them,
Verily I say unto you,
That this poor widow hath cast more in,
than all they which have cast into the treasury:
For all they did cast in of their abundance;
but she of her want did cast in all that she had,
even all her living”
MARK 12:41-44

Jesus drew the attention of his disciples to this incident so they would “see” the unfolding of everyday occurrences from His perspective. We live in a day of great religious works, buildings and programs but unless we can see things from His heart we will miss Him in the true opportunities that are presented to us in our daily lives. It is a process in our own heart that frees us from outward and seemingly good works into a walk of faith that is authentic and springs from a deep love of our Saviour.

“Now it came to pass, as they went,
that he entered into a certain village:
and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house.
And she had a sister called Mary,
which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word.
But Martha was cumbered about much serving,
and came to him, and said, Lord,
dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone?
bid her therefore that she help me.
And Jesus answered and said unto her,
Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:
But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part,
which shall not be taken away from her”
LUKE 10:38-42

Many are absorbed in the doing of numerous RELIGIOUS things FOR God while His real purpose is for us to be doing HIS WILL IN God.

“Truly, truly, I say to you,
the Son can do nothing of his own accord,
but only what he sees the Father doing.
For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise”
JOHN 5:19

The heart is the centre from which the core issues of our life are determined. What a man loves, what he treasures, and where his allegiance lies are kept in the secret places of the heart. How necessary it is that we invite Him to purify our hearts in order that we may obey His commandments uprightly and be freed from the outward works of religion.

“This people honors me with their lips,
but their heart is far from me;
in vain do they worship me,
teaching as doctrines the commandments of men”
MATTHEW 15:8-9

May our love for Him be the motivation from which we keep his commandments and honor His Name. This is true worship.

 

Brian Troxel

Peace WITH God & The Peace OF God

Peace WITH God & The Peace OF God

PEACE

“Therefore being justified by faith,
we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ”
Romans 5:1

Peace is the fruit of Righteousness; the greater the depth of righteousness the greater will be the depth of that Peace. In the life of every believer we are to know by faith we have (present tense) Peace with God. This peace was secured by the precious Lamb of God’s supreme offering of Himself for us on Calvary. Not only is this an historic fact it is an eternal truth upon which we can stand even in the face of our own personal failures and defeats. It is by this eternal truth that we meet the accusation of the enemy with the power of this declaration. It is a Peace settled in heaven by the guarantor of our salvation. May HE ever be praised! This is the starting place from which we begin our journey in Him.

HE came that we might have life, abundant life. That Life begins with the declaration that we are His children and because of that we have peace WITH GOD. May the Lord open our eyes to the glorious reality that HE IS COME that we may go on in HIM to have the peace OF GOD!

“And let the peace of God rule* in your hearts,
to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful”
COLOSSIANS 3:15

Here we see that this peace OF God is to rule in our hearts. It is a peace that rules and reigns within the concourse of our everyday life. It is to govern our conduct within the scope of our daily lives. It is to teach us the more perfect way of God. We are to walk in that Peace to such an extent that we recognize when we lose or trouble that Peace we are missing God on some point of action. The fruit of the righteousness of God in our lives is peace and when that peace is disturbed we can be sure that we are stepping out of His way to walk in our own. Peace is found in walking in His Way. The Way of Peace is mentioned in the scriptures as a path wherein we must walk to know of its reality. The Good News is that HE is come to guide our feet into the Way of Peace.

“To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the way of peace
LUKE 1:79

“And the way of peace have they not known…”
Romans 3:17

I know in my own experience that I have, without a doubt, peace with God and after forty years of walking with Him it is an unshakeable truth. But my heart longs for continued growth in the knowing of the peace of GOD that passes ALL UNDERSTANDING and is available to all who come to God by Christ Jesus. This PEACE OF GOD is of such a nature that nothing can affect its power, no outside circumstance nor any principality or power can disrupt its dominion in our lives. It is a peace that can only be known in the SON by the HOLY SPIRIT.

“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink;
but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost”
Romans 14:17

May we not grow weary and may our hearts desire for Him to propel us into the depths of this covenant relationship with our God. For it is HIS good pleasure to brings us into to the full knowing of the Son wherein we discover the fullness of HIS righteousness by the which we know the fullness of the PEACE of GOD.

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;
and all these things shall be added unto you”
MATTHEW 6:33

Ω

* βραβεύω brabeuō; fut. brabeuso. To be a brabeus, an umpire, director or arbiter in the public Greek games. In the NT, to rule, govern, and metaphorically to prevail, abound. Used intrans. (Col. 3:15, “the peace of God rule in your hearts”).

Brian Troxel

PSALM 23 – PART 14 – CORRECTION AND GROWTH –

PSALM 23

PART FOURTEEN

CORRECTION AND GROWTH

“Thy Rod…comforts* me”
PSALM 23:4

Without correction and accountability personal growth and fruitfulness becomes stagnated and stunted. Men who refuse correction cease to grow and cease to live. Jesus said “every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit”. We see this truth so aptly revealed in the world around us. Everything concerning life needs to be channelled in order to have direction and purpose. A river without banks is a flood, electricity without a path and a purpose we call “static” and a believer in God who has no personal vision or “mark” (Philippians 3:14) is one who will be without discipline or purpose. A good landscaper prunes his garden that it may grow and become all that he has purposed and envisioned it to be when he planted it. Jesus said that His father was the Vinedresser and they that are of this Vine (Jesus) are to bear fruit that the Father may be glorified. Therefore Fruit is anything that pleases and glorifies the Father.

It is in us receiving of His correction that we grow in fruitfulness and the inherent ability to bring forth expressions of the Son to glorify the Father. Let us hear the admonition from God’s Word; “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor detest His correction; For whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights” (Proverbs 3:11 – 12) The proof of God’s Love and His ongoing investment into our lives is REVEALED IN HIS ROD. We read In the Old and New Testament of the evident Hand of God actively expressing His Love and correction in the lives of people; some were EXERCISED by it and others refused it with eternal consequences. Men who refuse correction choose a life that eventually comes to ruin. God’s Word has summed up this truth in one powerful verse…

“He who keeps instruction (Hebrew: correction) is in the way of life,
But he who refuses correction goes astray”
PROVERBS 10:17

Does this not convey to us the reason behind the apostasy in our land today? Is there not a reason that the LOVE OF MANY has grown cold and indifferent? People are content to go through the motions of religion while failing to realize that we are here to BEAR FRUIT unto HIM who has called us out of darkness into HIS LIGHT that we might ever live to GLORIFY HIM.

God’s Word to HIS PEOPLE today is one of grave importance; one that reveals and lays bare the reason that we are in such disarray, impotence and apathy….

“I have even sent to you all My servants the prophets,
daily rising up early and sending them.
Yet they did not obey Me or incline their ear, but stiffened their neck…
This is a nation that does not obey the voice of the Lord their God
NOR RECEIVE CORRECTION.
Truth has perished and has been cut off from their mouth”
JEREMIAH 7:25 – 28

It is a Day for us to turn, to receive correction and to be EXERCISED in it that we may come forth as Gold tried in the Fire; purified and freed from our own agendas to DO THE WILL OF HIM that there may be Glory and Honour in His House.

King David knew well the power of change and repentance found in the ministration of truth from others in His day and the fruit that comes from the receiving of it.

“Let the righteous strike me; It shall be a kindness.
And let him rebuke me: It shall be as excellent oil;
Let my head not refuse it”
PSALM 141:5

Ω

“Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance,
baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession,
absolution without personal confession.
Cheap grace is grace without discipleship,
grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer

* See Psalm 23 Part 12 for the definition of the Hebrew Word used here

Brian Troxel