Digging  The  Word


  "I rejoice in Your word like one who discovers a great treasure."

Doing The Stuff

It's time to get busy working for Jesus.

 

Video: Doing the Stuff 

Matthew 9:36-38 When He saw the crowds, He had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 He said to His disciples, "The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask Him to send more workers into His fields."

There are too many people in the church that are very content to be consumers, they come and take in the show and enjoy the music and preaching but they never contribute to the work of the church.

Many of us talk about the work and train to do the work but we never actually get to work, in the Bible there are plenty of examples of God's people working for him and very little discussion or training about the work, it makes me wonder how we got off course.

Jesus saw how desperate the world around him was and it moved him deeply and his heart was broken that there were so few workers for such a large amount of work that needs to be done. Jesus saw the field that needed to be harvested and asked his disciples to pray for more workers.

Work, Work, Work!



Matthew 5:16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.

John 17:4 I brought glory to You here on earth by completing the work You gave Me to do.

1 Corinthians 15:58 So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.

Colossians 3:23 Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.

The idea of working for God for the rest of your days on this planet is talked about all over the Bible and especially the New Testament.

Jesus has asked us to join in the work of helping with the harvest and praying for other people to join us in the work. What an honor and privilege to be chosen for such a highly important work.

RELATED ARTICLES

Doing The Works Of Jesus (desiringgod.org)

Simeon: A Song Of Hope

Jesus gives me hope for this life and for eternity.

 

Luke 2:25-32  At that time there was a man in Jerusalem named Simeon. He was righteous and devout and was eagerly waiting for the Messiah to come and rescue Israel. The Holy Spirit was upon him 26 and had revealed to him that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.

27 That day the Spirit led him to the Temple. So when Mary and Joseph came to present the baby Jesus to the Lord as the law required, 28 Simeon was there. He took the child in his arms and praised God, saying,

29 "Sovereign Lord, now let Your servant die in peace, as You have promised. 30 I have seen Your salvation, 31 which You have prepared for all people. 32 He is a light to reveal God to the nations, and He is the glory of Your people Israel!"

The story of Simeon is a perfect blog post for after Christmas because Simeon didn't get to celebrate Jesus birth on the day it happened. The shepherds were told but Simeon didn't get to meet Jesus until Joseph and Mary brought him to the temple.

Mary was considered impure and consequently, she was not permitted to go to the temple, The laws pertaining to the "days of her purification" required the mother to stay home for forty days after the birth of a baby boy. (Leviticus 12:3-4)

We do not know very much about Simeon but what the Bible shares with us is enough. We know about the character and honor of this man, we know that God made a promise to him, and most importantly he believed the promise and God came through for him.

The Man's Character


He was a devout man with a proper relationship with God, from what we know of the other men of Jerusalem, he might have been the only one. Simeon was eagerly waiting, there was an expectation, I think that maybe he was like a kid that is waiting for Christmas morning.

We can see from these verses that Simeon's faith is mature, the fact that the Holy Spirit was upon him was an unusual occurrence at this time, this isn't said of many people before the Holy Spirit came to the early church after Jesus' resurrection.

We can also see his spiritual maturity from the things that he said about Jesus. He was fully aware of Jesus' mission to be the Messiah to all people.

The Promise Comes 


Simeon is still living with the power of the Holy Spirit when Jesus is brought to the temple. Can you imagine the commotion that he must have made as he rushed to see Jesus? What did Jesus' parents think about this old guy rushing up to hold their son?

What did the people around them think about the prophecy that Simeon made about Jesus? It seems that nobody else in the temple that day had any idea what was happening. They must have been cold spiritually to ignore the excitement. The light of the world, the glory of God's people was here and yet there wasn't any response from anybody else.

The Source Of Hope

Romans 15:13  I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
The hope that comes from God will give you peace and joy that will get you through the difficult times that you experience in this world. This hope will also give you peace and joy when you realize that the end of your life on earth is near, there will not be any reason to fret or worry about dying, this hope is good for today and will stay with you for eternity.

Simeon endeavored to have a right relationship with God. He didn't go after God so that he would get something from God, he pursued God first before the promises came along, Simeon knew that he should seek the giver, not the gifts that he can provide.

1 Peter 1:3  Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead

I was dead in my sin, a hopeless situation that I could not possibly get myself out of, but now I have been born again into a life of hope. The resurrection of Jesus is proof that I will also rise. Praise God for such an awesome Christmas gift!

I am still waiting for my hope to be realized in the life to come for all of eternity. I will rejoice despite the waiting for my hope to be realized. I will continue to live for Jesus each day out of gratitude for the hope that I could never deserve.

RELATED ARTICLE:

How Advent Teaches Us To Wait Well (crossway.org)

Our Lullaby

Peace on earth has finally arrived.

 


Hush little baby don’t you cry
Heaven’s watching out for you tonight
Watching you tonight
Hush little baby don’t you fret
Nothing’s gonna hurt you
Not even death
No not even death

Lullaby
Let heaven and angels sing for you tonight
For you tonight
This is our lullaby
Peace on earth has finally arrived

Hush now Mary don’t be afraid
Baby done come to clear the way
Come to clear the way
Hush now Joseph, don’t you fuss
Soon this child gonna carry us
Gonna carry us

The day will come soon enough
When you are singing over us
But tonight sleep in heavenly peace
And we’ll be the ones to sing

Hush little baby don’t you cry
Heaven’s watching out for you tonight
Watching you tonight


One Solitary Life

If Jesus life changed the world then maybe you should learn more about him.

 


One Solitary Life

He was born in an obscure village
The child of a peasant woman
He grew up in another obscure village
Where he worked in a carpenter shop
Until he was thirty when public opinion turned against him

He never wrote a book
He never held an office
He never went to college
He never visited a big city
He never travelled more than two hundred miles
From the place where he was born
He did none of the things
Usually associated with greatness
He had no credentials but himself

He was only thirty three

His friends ran away
One of them denied him
He was turned over to his enemies
And went through the mockery of a trial
He was nailed to a cross between two thieves
While dying, his executioners gambled for his clothing
The only property he had on earth

When he was dead
He was laid in a borrowed grave
Through the pity of a friend

Nineteen centuries have come and gone
And today Jesus is the central figure of the human race
And the leader of mankind's progress

All the armies that have ever marched
All the navies that have ever sailed
All the parliaments that have ever sat
All the kings that ever reigned put together
Have not affected the life of mankind on earth
As powerfully as that one solitary life

Dr James Allan Francis 1926

Have you ever considered the fact that one person made such a huge difference in our world? He didn't have a blog or social media, he didn't have a talk show or become a star in Hollywood.

It makes me wonder why we spend so much time listening to the people that have any of those things going for them. The people that have a platform as a news anchor, a Hollywood star or a writer or whatever popularity they have are nobody special. So many of them think that they have the answers and we need to hear what they are because they are special and they are enlightened.

Wouldn't we be better off if we found out what this one man said and did? If we dig into God's word and get a better understanding of this one ordinary life then we would have something solid to base our life on.

Angels: A Song Of Peace

Is there really peace on earth? Can you have peace despite your circumstances?

 

Luke 2:8-16  And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10 And the angel said to them,

"Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger."

13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, 14 "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!"

15 When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, "Let's go to Bethlehem! Let's see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about." 16 They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger.

The shepherds in the field watching their flock during the night were not very likely candidates to have such an amazing announcement made to them. God's Son has just made his entrance into the world that he created and the event is announced to some dirty, unlikable working class guys on the night shift.

The angels tell them that they don't need to be afraid, they are here with the best news that there has ever been, they announce that Jesus is born and tell the shepherds how to find him and then they break out into praise and worship.

How do you define peace? Most of us would say that it is a lack of trouble and the state of being where nobody is bothering us. That is a good idea but there is a deeper meaning that the Bible talks about.

In the praise and worship that the angels did in front of the shepherds they made it clear that peace comes to the people that please God. The world will try to help you have peace, it is usually a denial of your circumstances or a plan to get rid of the trouble around you, they might even tell you that you need just one more thing that money can buy.

God's Peace

Jeremiah 33:8-9 I will cleanse them of their sins against Me and forgive all their sins of rebellion. Then this city will bring Me joy, glory, and honor before all the nations of the earth! The people of the world will see all the good I do for My people, and they will tremble with awe at the peace and prosperity I provide for them.
God's children had a lot of people telling them how to have peace. Just like it is today, they had a lot of people telling them what it takes to have peace, but not all of these people knew what they were talking about.

A good relationship with God is the key. A sign of a false prophet in the Old Testament was their message of peace that came without any repentance. The real prophets message told the people that peace could never be achieved without righteousness and justice.


Even with great trials we can still be at peace. Consider the fact that Jesus told his disciples that he was giving them the gift of real peace just hours before he would calmly go on trial and be crucified. (John 14:27) And then there is Paul, a man that had plenty of sorrow and hardships, he told many of the churches that he started that followers of Jesus have peace with God despite the persecution. (Romans 5:1-3, Philippians 4:6-7)

Yes, there is peace on earth, you just have to look beyond the cheap peace of this world. You just have to know the Prince of Peace.

Light Of The World

The world waits for a miracle, oh come, oh come Emanuel.

 


John 1:1-5 In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He existed in the beginning with God. 3 God created everything through Him, and nothing was created except through Him.

4 The Word gave life to everything that was created, and His life brought light to everyone. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.

John 1:9-14 The One who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He came into the very world He created, but the world didn't recognize Him. 11 He came to His own people, and even they rejected Him. 12 But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God.

13 They are reborn--not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God. 14 So the Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen His glory, the glory of the Father's one and only Son.

Mary: A Song Of Trust

Trusting God when I lack understanding and I don't have all of the answers.

 

Luke 1:38 Mary responded, "I am the Lord's servant. May everything you have said about me come true." And then the angel left her.

Luke 1:46-55 Mary responded, "Oh, how my soul praises the Lord. 47 How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! 48 For He took notice of His lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed.

49 For the Mighty One is holy, and He has done great things for me. 50 He shows mercy from generation to generation to all who fear Him. 51 His mighty arm has done tremendous things! He has scattered the proud and haughty ones. 52 He has brought down princes from their thrones and exalted the humble. 53 He has filled the hungry with good things and sent the rich away with empty hands.

54 He has helped His servant Israel and remembered to be merciful. 55 For He made this promise to our ancestors, to Abraham and his children forever."

There are not very many people that can say that God has spoken so vividly as he did to Mary, I have not heard of anyone that has knowingly had a conversation with an angel from God, I have to wonder how you or I would respond.

Mary already knew what happens to unwed mothers and now through no fault of her own she is in that predicament.  This is a huge change in her life, Mary would never be the same, people would treat her differently, would they ever believe that she didn't do anything wrong? Would she ever have a husband, would Joseph go through with the wedding? Would all of the men shun her? Would she be allowed to live or would she have to run away from home?

Luke 2:52 Jesus grew in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and all the people.

The biggest question was how could she raise the Son of God? There are a lot of books on raising boys these days but they didn't have them in her day and this boy wasn't just any boy. The gospels say almost nothing about Jesus for thirty years of his life. We don't know anything about Mary's parenting skills or what happened to Joseph.

Mary's response to the angel was amazing, she must have still had plenty of questions and reasons to hold back her trust in God but she told the angel that she was willing to allow everything that he said to happen to her.

Mary's song has three sections:


✔  God Always Uses An Ordinary Person (Luke 1:46-49)


Mary's blessing was not something that she earned, just like you and I, she was unworthy and had no special goodness. God chose to favor her by his design, God has never been one to show respect for anyone because nobody has ever deserved it.

If Mary could come back to earth and tell us anything it would probably be to "call me blessed but don't go any further!" She doesn't have an super powers or special status with God, Mary is just another frail, imperfect human being just like every other Bible character that we know.

Mary’s song of praise reflects her total submission and deep gratitude to God for what he was doing through her despite her shortcomings and sin nature. Mary's song was similar to the song of Hannah whose son also came about under special circumstances and whose son would serve the people as a priest. (1 Samuel 2:1-10)

✔  God doesn't use the rich and powerful (Luke 1:50-53)


Mary expands her praise from God's goodness to her to his goodness and power in general to all mankind and especially for his people. Mary shows greater humility in the fact that she didn't dwell on herself but she went beyond herself to include all of us.

Psalms 34:2-3 I will boast only in the LORD; let all who are helpless take heart. Come, let us tell of the LORD's greatness; let us exalt His name together.

God's blessings are for everybody and we should celebrate everyday but especially at Christmas. Have you ever thought about the fact that God uses anybody, no matter what status that we put on people that doesn't make any difference, God will use anyone who trust him.

Video:  Mary Did You Know - Pentatonix

✔  God was being faithful to the promises he gave to Israel (Luke 1:54-56)


Israel didn't trust God to come through with his promises, if you were in their shoes and you had heard the promises from previous generations and you didn't see any evidence that they were about to come true during your lifetime then you wouldn't be any different. (Genesis 22:17-18)

Our human nature makes it difficult to let go and trust God despite the evidence, Noah, Abraham and so many others had to look beyond their own reasoning and believe the promise.

Trust In The Lord

Proverbs 3:5-7 Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6 Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take. 7 Don't be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the LORD and turn away from evil.
Trust is difficult but to trust with all of my heart is a new level of difficult, my own wisdom and understanding gets in the way, I start to analyze the situation and even though I want to trust with all of my heart my understanding makes me fearful and it gives me really good reasons to stop trusting.

My security and my God given reasoning abilities can work against me so that I hold back but I need to remember the next verse tells me that I better not be impressed with my own wisdom. God may ask you to do the unreasonable, my wisdom may clash with his plans to redeem the world and display his glory, his plans may not include me living a safe life to a ripe old age. Mary's plans for her life were so much easier that God's plans!

God has announced great news and promises to me, I need to respond with complete trust despite what my head may think, I need to follow with all of my heart. God's blessings to me are mind blowing. I know that I will inherit a glorious home in heaven someday so I need to trust him and not be focused on having the best life now.

What is your response? Are you blessed or entitled? Can you truly trust God with all of your heart?

He Shall Reign Forevermore

Unto us a child is born, the King of kings and Lord of lords.

 


He Shall Reign Forevermore
In the bleak mid-winter, all creation groans
For a world in darkness, frozen like a stone
Light is breaking, in a stable
For a throne

And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore
And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore
Unto us a child is born
The King of kings and Lord of lords
And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore

If I were a wise man, I would travel far
And if I were a shepherd, I would do my part
But poor as I am
I will give to Him my heart

And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore
And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore
Unto us a child is born
The King of kings and Lord of lords
And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore

Here within a manger lies
The One who made the starry skies
This baby born for sacrifice
Christ, the Messiah
Into our hopes, into our fears
The Savior of the world appears
The promise of eternal years
Christ, the Messiah

He shall reign forevermore, forevermore
And he shall reign forevermore, forevermore
He shall reign forevermore, forevermore

And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore
Unto us a child is born
The King of kings and Lord of lords
And He shall reign forevermore, forevermore

From the album:


God With Us: Why Did He Come?

What did God accomplish in sending his Son to die?

 

John 3:16 "For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.

Each Christmas we celebrate the birth of somebody that would have never died, somebody that came so that he could die, somebody that died because of nothing that he did. What an amazing thought! Jesus could have stayed home and he would have avoided a lot of suffering. If I had to choose, I am pretty sure that I would have stayed home, I could not be so concerned for somebody else that I would leave the splendor of heaven and live here on this planet.

Such drastic actions on Jesus part should make us wonder, why did Jesus come to die? Who killed Jesus? What was the purpose? Why didn't he stay home avoid a lot of pain and sorrow?

Free book download: Fifty Reasons Jesus Came To Die - John Piper

In my study of "God With Us" this Christmas, I came across this John Piper book that is a free PDF download. The book there is a detailed study of why Jesus came to die, with an exhaustive list of reasons and a detailed explanation of what each reason is about and the Bible verses that backup each reason.

Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die:


1. To Absorb the Wrath of God
2. To Please His Heavenly Father
3. To Learn Obedience and Be Perfected
4. To Achieve His Own Resurrection from the Dead
5. To Show the Wealth of God’s Love and Grace for Sinners
6. To Show His Own Love for Us
7. To Cancel the Legal Demands of the Law Against Us
8. To Become a Ransom for Many
9. For the Forgiveness of Our Sins
10. To Provide the Basis for Our Justification
11. To Complete the Obedience That Becomes Our Righteousness
12. To Take Away Our Condemnation
13. To Abolish Circumcision and All Rituals as the Basis of Salvation
14. To Bring Us to Faith and Keep Us Faithful
15. To Make Us Holy, Blameless, and Perfect
16. To Give Us a Clear Conscience
17. To Obtain for Us All Things That Are Good for Us
18. To Heal Us from Moral and Physical Sickness
19. To Give Eternal Life to All Who Believe on Him
20. To Deliver Us from the Present Evil Age
21. To Reconcile Us to God
22. To Bring Us to God
23. So That We Might Belong to Him
24. To Give Us Confident Access to the Holiest Place
25. To Become for Us the Place Where We Meet God
26. To Bring the Old Testament Priesthood to an End and Become the Eternal High Priest
27. To Become a Sympathetic and Helpful Priest
28. To Free Us from the Futility of Our Ancestry
29. To Free Us from the Slavery of Sin
30. That We Might Die to Sin and Live to Righteousness
31. So That We Would Die to the Law and Bear Fruit for God
32. To Enable Us to Live for Christ and Not Ourselves
33. To Make His Cross the Ground of All Our Boasting
34. To Enable Us to Live by Faith in Him
35. To Give Marriage Its Deepest Meaning
36. To Create a People Passionate for Good Works
37. To Call Us to Follow His Example of Lowliness and Costly Love
38. To Create a Band of Crucified Followers
39. To Free Us from Bondage to the Fear of Death
40. So That We Would Be with Him Immediately After Death
41. To Secure Our Resurrection from the Dead
42. To Disarm the Rulers and Authorities
43. To Unleash the Power of God in the Gospel
44. To Destroy the Hostility Between Races
45. To Ransom People from Every Tribe and Language and People and Nation
46. To Gather All His Sheep from Around the World
47. To Rescue Us from Final Judgment
48. To Gain His Joy and Ours
49. So That He Would Be Crowned with Glory and Honor
50. To Show That the Worst Evil Is Meant by God for Good

Get the details for each reason in the free book download: Fifty Reasons Jesus Came To Die by John Piper.

God With Us: This Changes Everything!

We are so familiar with "God with us" that we don't really consider what that means.

 

Matthew 1:18-25  This is how Jesus the Messiah was born. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph. But before the marriage took place, while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant through the power of the Holy Spirit.  19  Joseph, her fiance, was a good man and did not want to disgrace her publicly, so he decided to break the engagement quietly.

20  As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. "Joseph, son of David," the angel said, "do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit.  21  And she will have a son, and you are to name Him Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins."

22  All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord's message through His prophet:  23  "Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call Him Emmanuel, which means 'God is with us.'"  24  When Joseph woke up, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded and took Mary as his wife.  25  But he did not have sexual relations with her until her son was born. And Joseph named Him Jesus.

The familiarity that we have of the scripture about Christmas makes us tune out early when we hear a sermon or a Sunday school lesson on the subject. The familiar doesn’t speak to us as well as it should, the awesomeness of the Christmas story disappears and the mind blowing reality of the facts disappear.

There are a lot of names and titles given to Jesus but the most significant is Emmanuel, this name which Matthew refers to in his Gospel (Matthew 1:23), was first given to Jesus by the prophet Isaiah 700 years before Jesus birth (Isaiah 7:14).

Slow down and focus for a minute, consider the awesomeness and how mind blowing this phrase is, I want to look at each word of the phrase:

“God With Us”


God

The world cannot come up with enough ways to distract us from the real reason that we celebrate at this time of year. There was a time when almost everybody in the United States knew what the celebration was all about but in today's world the truth about Christmas has been lost.
Luke 2:20  The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.
The one and only true God came into our world! The promise that the prophets shared with us has come to pass. As Jesus grew into a man there was plenty of proof that convinced the people that knew him that he is God.


Many of the other religious systems would tolerate it but the first century Jew was the least likely to worship a human being and yet the Bible tells us that Jesus was being worshiped right after his birth by the angels and then by the shepherds. Even the demons that saw Jesus acknowledged that Jesus is the Son of God.

With

The characters in the Christmas story all knew that God was with them! The very person that all of the Old Testament had been talking about was with them.
John 1:14   So the Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen His glory, the glory of the Father's one and only Son.
Wasn't God always with the human race?  Yes, God was with us but the baby changes how we relate to God. God, the Creator, has always been with His creation, but the God we see in the Old Testament was always terrifying. 
Exodus 19:16-18  On the morning of the third day, thunder roared and lightning flashed, and a dense cloud came down on the mountain. There was a long, loud blast from a ram's horn, and all the people trembled. Moses led them out from the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. All of Mount Sinai was covered with smoke because the LORD had descended on it in the form of fire. The smoke billowed into the sky like smoke from a brick kiln, and the whole mountain shook violently.
God is with us and he isn’t scary, the baby that is with us in the manger is the polar opposite of God as we see him in the Old Testament, God has removed the veil what Moses wanted to see through. Moses was denied what we have, the terror and fear are gone

The baby changes everything, they were able to approach the child and even hold him in their arms, Moses would wonder why we don't celebrate this amazing event in a manner that is more suitable for the reality of God with us. (2 Corinthians 3:12-18)

In his book the disciple John wants us to know that he was there, he had personal contact with Jesus, he saw what he did, he heard him teach and he touched a real physical body. John believed and he wished that his readers might come to the same conclusion that he had. (1 John 1:1-4)

Us

Who is the us that God came to be with? The rich and powerful were not chosen to be the ones that God revealed the child to. The dirty, the weary and oppressed, people that were hungry and desperate, those are the people that Jesus came to be with.

The spiritually hungry people that come to Jesus with nothing, no works or defense for their sin. We must come to God on his terms, see ourselves the way that he sees us and then we will be able to receive great gifts from him.

This Changes Everything

Galatians 4:4-7 But when the right time came, God sent His Son, born of a woman, subject to the law.  5 God sent Him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that He could adopt us as His very own children.

6 And because we are His children, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, "Abba, Father."  7 Now you are no longer a slave but God's own child. And since you are His child, God has made you His heir.
A baby changes everything but not every baby changes things as much as baby Jesus this child had an affect on world history. Jesus didn't just change world history, my desperate situation is completely gone and now as God's son I am an heir of the kingdom. My personal history had me destined to bear the punishment that was bore by Jesus. The baby can change your history as well!

Christmas is all about getting near him, just look at what he did to get close to you, God kept his promise to us. How can we ignore such an opportunity to be in close fellowship with our creator?

It will cost me some time, I will have to get out of bed earlier, I will have to find a quiet place to meet with him, and push aside all of the distractions. But who cares! The chance to meet with God is an amazing opportunity that we should take advantage of. It is amazing that we let it go without much concern.

"Christmas Changes Everything" by Josh Wilson

God with us changes everything, I can relate with him in a the most intimate, personal relationship imaginable with Him. I can approach God without shame or fear, I can depend on Him for all things and walk daily knowing that God is with me.

I need to take the time to really ponder the reality of God with us, I need to make the familiar story fresh again and see it with new eyes.

RELATED ARTICLES

God With Us (redeemer.com)
Why Did Christ Come (desiringgod.org)

Christ Is Born!

Lord most holy we worship and adore you!

 


Lord most holy
Lord most holy

We worship and adore You
O Holy Child of Heaven
O God incarnate One with the Holy Spirit
And with the Father

We lift our songs of praise to Thee
Redeeming love has set us free
For Christ has been victorious
and he will reign eternally

The Son of God, our Hope,
Our Great Redeemer, The Prince of Glory
We lift our songs of praise to Thee
Redeeming love has set us free

We long for heaven and for his return
and we will praise him eternally

A Heart Of Thanks: Joyfully Praises God

Shout for joy when you remember God's love and faithfulness.

 

Psalms 100:1-5 A psalm of thanksgiving. Shout with joy to the LORD, all the earth!  2 Worship the LORD with gladness. Come before Him, singing with joy.  3 Acknowledge that the LORD is God! He made us, and we are His.

We are His people, the sheep of His pasture.  4 Enter His gates with thanksgiving; go into His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him and praise His name.  5 For the LORD is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and His faithfulness continues to each generation.

This world is a noisy place, it is so bad that there are people that have issues with sensory overload, everything begins to sound like fingernails on a chalkboard. This sensitivity to noise is known as hyperacusis, a condition that occurs from a problem in the way the brain processes noise.

The noise that the world makes is not joyful, there are so many people that are angry yelling about whatever, there are cell phones ringing and Facebook notifications and text messages dinging. Construction equipment, political ads, airplanes and gunfire, this world fills up our heads with unpleasant sounds all day long.

The noise that God's people make is joyful, it is a celebration of who he is and what he has done for us, when you realize how incredibly good he has been it should make you a noisy person. We should be bold and noisy, clapping our hands, shouting and singing praises, playing instruments to express our gratitude with joyful abandon. (Psalm 95:1; 98:6; 149:3; 1 Chronicles 15:28).

Yes, I know, there is a time for quiet reverence in the presence of God and he often speaks in a still small voice but he also delights in us giving it our all to thank him for who he is and what he has done. (Psalm 5:7; 95:6)

Heaven is a noisy place, our voices will not be silent in heaven, we will be joining in with what is already going on there. (Revelation 5:6-14, 14:1-3, 19:1-2) When we break out into song and worship God we are getting a head start on heaven, bringing a piece of heaven to earth, why should we wait until we get there?

Colossians 3:15-17 And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.

Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom He gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.

And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

Always be thankful, it should be a part of our identity as believes, a believer that isn't thankful doesn't get it. Singing helps us to get the truth of scripture into our heads so we won't forget them when we are in difficult situations. Think about the noise that Paul and Silas made while they sat in jail. (Acts 16:25-30)

Consider your attitude. Are you as thankful or grateful as you ought to be? How can you express thanksgiving in a more regular manner?

Lord help me to make a joyful noise all of the time. You are great and you should be praised greatly.  I want to sing your praises now and get a head start on what I will be doing in heaven.

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The Happy Choir Of Heaven (desiringgod.org)