Thought for Today – Obstacles –

Thought for Today

Obstacles

“As for the Jebusites the inhabitants of Jerusalem,
the children of Judah could not drive them out:
but the Jebusites dwell with the children of Judah
at Jerusalem unto this day”
Joshua 15:13

Though the Land of Promise had been given, it was the responsibility of His people to take the land and possess it. Within every promise given to us by God there remains a warfare and a battle of faith to make it our own.

“This charge I entrust to you, Timothy, my child,
in accordance with the prophecies previously made about you,
that by them you may wage the good warfare
1 Timothy 1:18

It is in the receiving of God’s promises and embracing His call upon our lives that we contend in faith to see them come to pass. There is no victory without the battle, no crown without the fight and no overcoming without the exercising of our faith.

It has taken me years to appreciate that every obstacle in my life is for my own good and learning. It is in these things we discover the true value of Grace and Mercy. If the victory in these things were easy and within the realm of our own strength, then we would be a poor example of what HE has intended for us. If we do not engage in the warfare, our walk will never be able to show forth His victory in our lives and we will live a life of compromise with our enemies…

“By little and little I will drive them out from before thee,
until thou be increased, and inherit the land”
Exodus 23:30

God has a purpose in the obstacles which stand between us and His promises… it is to the “increase’ of our faith and our strength. He has purposed us to become strong, He has intended us to be persistent and determined in the apprehending of the promises given to us. It is in these things we grow strong in our God for we have learned that our God is strong!

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

 

PRISONERS OF HOPE

PRISONERS OF HOPE

“Turn you to the strong hold,
ye prisoners of hope”

Zechariah 9:12

A living HOPE produces a life of strength and stability. It is a power within the life of the individual who has been captivated by its beauty. In the book of Hebrews it is described as “an anchor for the soul”. It is more than a theoretical concept; it is an ANCHOR that holds us in the storms of life. It is a light that shines in our darkness and gives us the ability to stand in this day of obscurity. Without Faith, Hope is dead. Faith is the SUBSTANCE of the thing for which we hope. Faith has within itself the evidence of all that we hope for. This living Hope will not leave us destitute in some poverty stricken state for we are confident that…

“HOPE MAKETH NOT ASHAMED…”

Hope also has the power to produce a righteous life and a purified heart.

“And every man that hath this hope IN him purifieth himself,
even as he is pure”

1 JOHN 3:3

We are to be people whose lives are captivated by the beauty of our Risen Christ. The HOPE we have in HIM, whereby we know that HE is able to subdue all things under His Feet, takes us from the corruption of the Old Adam into the perfections of the New. This HOPE is to be ours to such a degree that we are purified “even as HE is pure”! The reality of our HOPE is revealed in a life where our motives are freed from selfish gain; we do things because they are right and not for the sake of being seen by others. Our actions are scrutinized by the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Truth MUST produce true expressions within the lives of those who are exercised by it.

Let us HOLD FAST to the power of that living HOPE that we may stand in this evil day, unashamed, undeterred in our pursuit of HIS KINGDOM and HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS. For our hope is based on the RESURRECTION LIFE of JESUS.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again
unto a lively hope BY the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead”

1 PETER 1:3

Ω

“Great hopes make great men.”
Thomas Fuller

Brian Troxel

TITUS 2:14 PART FOUR

TITUS 2:14

“Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity,
and purify unto himself a peculiar* people,
zealous of good works.

Titus 2:14

PART FOUR

“The Private Purse”

May the Spirit of truth impress upon our heart the reason why He gave Himself for us; “that He might…. purify unto Himself a peculiar people.” Not only to redeem us from something but more importantly unto something. The church in our day as a whole has as its focus that we have been redeemed; how true and wonderful that is. But redemption’s purpose is not simply to grant us forgiveness that we might go out and live our lives unto ourselves, but rather that we live unto HIM. The very Greek word for redemption used here implies more than something paid to obtain release. It speaks of the very release itself. Religion is very content with a legal statement; in the New Testament there is a Greek Word that is also translated redeem to convey this thought. But a heart that desires truth sees this as the starting point not the end. Paul is stressing here the reality of this truth; to be redeemed is unto something and that something is a purified life unto Him. In the very process of becoming purified unto Him we become a peculiar people! We hear all kinds of puns about the people of God being peculiar in reference to something other than a good thing. But, the English word peculiar is from a Latin word* that means a private purse. The implication of the private purse is one where special and private resources have been set aside for those who are in Christ Jesus. This word was used to describe a special fund which was appointed for the training, supporting and financing of a family member which was  outside or in addition to the regular allowance for the household. In other words the people of God should be experiencing a life that has additional resources to which those outside of the New Covenant have no access! This is a build on the original Greek word used here and is the only time it is used in the entire New Testament. The Greek Word “periousios” comes from two Greek Words “peri” (beyond) and “ousia” (substance or being) commonly used words such as abundance, exceeding, and others are dim expressions of all that this word implies. In other words, HE has come that we might live beyond the substance of our own resources! It is with such things in view that the scripture declares…

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard,
neither have entered into the heart of man,
the things which God hath prepared for them
that love him.”

I Corinthians 2:9

Purified unto a peculiar people by the redemptive ACT of God! Purified until the motive of our heart is single; for if “our eye be single, our body is full of light”. If in all our trials God has produced in us a pure heart we will with single purpose seek to glorify HIM in them. If there are other motives at work the trials will reveal those and we then have the opportunity to allow HIM to burn off the dross that the purity of HIS heart may shine forth. The Christian life is not a life that is lived in the absence of trials but one in which through the trials we begin to discover the “private purse”. We learn how to draw from the abundant resources of the living Christ that in every circumstance we might live unto the Glory of HIS Holy Name. The private purse; a hidden resource of which this world knows nothing. A power that flows out of weakness, a richness that is freely given out of poverty and a life that is lived to a fullness out of death. Such wonder and power is ours by the God of all Grace taking upon Himself the initiative of redeeming us “from all iniquity… unto HIMSELF!” May the truth of these things stir our hearts afresh to walk in the power, the life and the Glory that is ours in Christ Jesus.

“Now unto HIM that is able to keep you from falling,
and to present you faultless
before the presence of HIS Glory
with exceeding joy.
To the only wise GOD our saviour,
be glory and majesty, dominion and power,
both NOW and ever, AMEN.”

Jude 1:24 – 25

*NOTE: Περιούσιος is from the participle of περιεῖναι to be over and above: hence περιουσία abundance, plenty. Περιούσιος also means possessed over and above, that is, specially selected for one’s own; exempt from ordinary laws of distribution. Hence correctly represented by peculiar, derived from peculium, a private purse, a special acquisition of a member of a family distinct from the property administered for the good of the whole family. (Vincent Word Studies)

The Authorized Version “peculiar” expresses the sense exactly, and the περιούσιος of our text and of the LXX., from whom it is borrowed, is meant to define either that special reserved portion of a man’s property over and above what he spends for ordinary expenses, which nobody can interfere with, or those jewels on which he sets a special value, and places safely in his treasury. (The Pulpit Commentary)

The thought expressed here is two-fold.

  1. Where the purified believer has access to a private purse of provision and supply above and beyond the ordinary provisions of the regular house-hold
  2. The purified believer is to become a “peculiar” or set apart possession of the master of the house. This is speaking of a sanctified life where the one which has been set aside for a “peculiar” purpose is a prized possession of the Master.

“If a man therefore purge himself from these,
he shall be a vessel unto honour,
sanctified, and meet for the master’s use…”
2 Timothy 2:21

Brian Troxel