Thought for Today – The Evidence of Grace

Thought for Today

The Evidence of Grace

“But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord”
Genesis 6:8

Within the pervading darkness of Noah’s day, God’s grace found a resting place. The fading light of the conscience of a whole generation was falling into the morass of a violence which covered the earth (Genesis 6:11). Man left to himself will always succumb to the fallen beastly nature of perdition. The very DNA of man, corrupted by its own desire for self-realization; grasping, taking and robing from each other in order to achieve the glorification and gratification of its own evil self; necessitates God’s intervention and judgment. It is in this unruly, ungodly and lawless ethos that “Noah found grace”!

This Grace which Noah “found” caused him to be a light to His generation. His light was a prophetic word of things to come. His works were the expression of his faith.

“By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith”
Hebrews 11:7

Noah’s faith was moved by godly fear unto the building of the Ark… by the which he condemned the world! It is in our living, our doing and our obeying God that we are the light of our generation. Our works are the revelation of our salvation, they are the offspring of Grace through the wonder of faith. We are not saved by works; our works are simply the revelation of our salvation (Ephesians 2:8-10).

True grace received must always produce obedience within the life of the recipient. The proportion of grace received will be revealed in the evidentiary expression of it in the life lived and the corresponding works of grace into the world around it (1 Corinthians 15:10).

“Thus did Noah;
according to all that God commanded him,
so did he”
Genesis 6:22

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – Dwight Moody

Quote for Today

DL Moody

“Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God’ (Rom. 10:17). That is whence faith comes. It is not for me to sit down and wait for faith to come stealing over me with a strong sensation, but is for me to take God at His Word”
– Dwight Moody

And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
– Luke 4:4

Quote for Today – Thomas DeWitt Talmage

Quote for Today

Thomas De Witt Talmage

“I like the Bible folded between lids of cloth, or calfskin, or morocco, but I like it better when, in the shape of a man, it goes out into the world-a Bible illustrated.”
– Thomas De Witt Talmage

“Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God”
– 2 Corinthians 3:3

Thought for Today – Choose Life

Thought for Today

Choose Life

“By Faith Moses… choosing and
Esteeming the reproach of the Christ
greater riches than the treasures in Egypt,
for he had respect unto the
recompense of the reward”
Hebrews 11:24-26

Our estimation of Christ is revealed in the life we live. The previous verses describe what Moses did, this verse tells us why he did what he did. What people do (not what they say) reveals their true life and the motivations of their heart.

Moses forsook Egypt though he found himself a part of the Egyptian Royal Family to a life of luxury and comfort. The scripture tells us he “choose” to suffer with God’s people rather than to enjoy the “pleasures of sin”. How little emphasis is put upon the choices we make daily in terms of our walk with God.

“…choose you this day whom ye will serve”
Joshua 24:15

Joshua put forward his admonition to the people of God in his day; “Choose you this day”. The life of a true Christian is revealed in the everyday walk. It is expressed in the choices and the decisions we make. God Himself is the witness to our everyday conduct. He sees the hidden thoughts, the agendas and the intentions behind all of our actions and words. They who know and walk in the abiding sense of His presence are ever aware of His eyes being upon them. They who are insensitive to these things walk in the foolishness of this world.

The ever present word of God to us all…

“I call heaven and earth to record this day against you,
that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing:
therefore, choose life…”
Deuteronomy 30:19

Brian Troxel

Thought for Today – Vance Havner

Thought for Today

Vance Havner

“The vision must be followed by the venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps – we must step up the stairs”
Vance Havner

“A vision without obedience remains an ethereal dream with no substance or vitality”
Brian Troxel

“Whereupon, O king Agrippa,
I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision”
Acts 26:19

Thought for Today – Faithfulness

Thought for Today

Faithfulness

 

“And let us not be weary in well doing:
for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not”
Galatians 6:9

Endurance is the secret to reaping. Endurance is the womb from which faithfulness springs. Faithfulness implies “being full of faith”. Faithfulness speaks of sowing in hope, believing God for the harvest to follow. It needs no seeing or evidence to continue steadfastly in the things at hand. It believes God, trusts God and rests in God knowing He is faithful. Our faithfulness is proportional to our trust in His faithfulness.

“But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly;
and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully”
2 Corinthians 9:6

Ω

“He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed,
shall doubtless come again with rejoicing,
bringing his sheaves with him”
Psalm 126:6

Brian Troxel

Thought for Today – The War Against the Soul

War Against the Soul

The War Against the Soul

“Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims,
abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul”
1 Peter 2:9

The aged and seasoned Peter beseeches the people of God to abstain from the fleshly lusts of this world which have long embattled the souls of the pilgrims of faith. Throughout the varied history of God’s people, the tendency has been to compromise with their enemies rather than eradicate them. The enemies and vices with whom one generation makes covenants/compromises, rule over them in succeeding generations. The things that one generation allows become the excesses of the next; the purity and the life of Christ ebbs away with each passing generation.

We are called to abstain from these things for they war against our very soul. These lusts and desires wither and shrink the vision of our Beloved. They taint the thought life, the inner sanctum of our being, and blind the soul from the light and glory of God Himself. It is an all-out assault on the minds and souls of God’s people. There is but one answer: the Lordship of Christ within the life of every believer. Victory! His Lordship coupled with our obedience insulates us in His Holy Presence. Joseph fled temptation and in the end became the Zaphnath–paaneah of the known world. If Christ’s Spirit does not rule within, our outward life will not stand in this day. His Kingdom starts within the thoughts, desires and intentions of every heart.

The Kingdom of God is not a message; it is a life. It is not a teaching, a word or a concept; it is the rule of God within the heart of man. It is a state of being; a heart fully submissive to the intonations of His Holy Spirit. His will is our will. His thoughts are our thoughts and He is seen and heard within the lives of His own.

“For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power”
1 Corinthians 4:20

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

It takes power and an authority beyond the scope of human nature to bring this kingdom into the heart and soul of man. Just as in the days of Israel, our enemies are stronger and more powerful than we are. The secret of victory is in our humility of learning the ways of His warfare. His Spirit teaches our hands to war and our fingers to fight.

“He teacheth my hands to war;
so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms”
1 Samuel 22:35

“Blessed be the Lord my strength,
which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight”
Psalm 144:1

The war of the soul takes place in the unseen realm of our thoughts, far away from the sight of all but God. It is here that the battle rages. It is here that the unseen foes are defeated by the power of His Spirit working within our lives.

“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ”.
2 Corinthians 10:3-5

The authority of His Kingdom is known first and foremost in the secret places of the heart.

“For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it”
Matthew 8:9

True authority in God’s Kingdom will be revealed through those who are under His authority. Many may claim authority because of knowledge, associations, and strength of personality; but God sees into the secret places and sets His love upon those who love Him.

“In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men
by Jesus Christ according to my gospel”
Romans 2:16

It is a day to avail ourselves of His grace to find the strength to fight the fight of faith and having done all to stand victorious in this evil day! To Him be the Glory and the Power and the Praise!

“Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God,
that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day,
and having done all, to stand”
Ephesians 6:13

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – John Wesley

Quote for Today

John Wesley

“To him that hath” that is, useth what he hath, it shall be given still and that more abundantly. Therefore, use your every grace, stir up the gift of God that is in you, be zealous, be active, according to your strength, speak for God wherever you are”
– John Wesley

“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself”
– Luke 10:27

Thought for Today – Seeing God

Thought for Today

Seeing God

“Pursue… holiness,
without which no one will see the Lord””
Hebrews 12:14

Holiness is never an end in itself; rather it is the seeing of God. Knowing God is the chief purpose of all life. Holiness is simply the condition of heart whereby the individual is able to see Him. Nature determines relationship, not teaching.

The things of God are never a resting place in themselves, for those who desire the Pearl of Great Price. Justification is a precious truth yet not the goal of a true heart. It is but the doorway into the knowing of Him as He is. Functioning in the gifts of the Spirit is not an end but simply an embellishment of the graces and mercies of our God. Salvation by grace is the gateway not the end of the pure in heart. Heaven is never the goal of the true child of God; HE is. Christ Himself, the Pearl, is the end and purpose of all creation. There is no relationship with the Father apart from being hid in Christ. It is in Christ alone the heart is at peace and filled with the wonder and Glory of God. There is no other call or purpose.

The pursuit of personal holiness is the means and the lens by which the individual believer may behold, touch and know Him. If the lens is dirty, clouded over with the filth, the stain and the impurities of this world our seeing of Him is partial, obscured and even tainted by our own condition. Purity of heart is the result of holy living.

“Blessed are the pure in heart:
for they shall see God”
Matthew 5:8

It is the horror of religion that makes holiness the end rather than the means. Self-righteousness is the bane and folly of the short sighted; the selfish desire of a wicked heart. The Pharisee in Jesus’ day was the corruption of the selfish pursuit of ungodly men. Pharisee in the original language means “called out ones”. They may at one time have been people whose sole purpose was right and true but with the passage of time (as is often the case) their eyes grew dim and the pursuit for the knowing of God became a selfish pretext to flaunt themselves.

The pure in heart pursue holiness in order to behold Him. It is in seeing the Pearl of Great Price that the pure in heart sell all that they have to acquire this one thing. True holiness is simply forsaking all other things in order to know this One Thing.

“Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss
for the excellency of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord…”
Philippians 3:8

Brian Troxel