The Right Kind

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It doesn’t take a lot of people to make an impact for Christ; it merely takes the right kind.



Today’s passage proclaims the sovereignty and majesty of the living God and calls on everyone throughout the nation to fear and tremble before Him. Those verses could have been written by King David or one of the other psalmists, but they were written by a pagan king to a pagan nation. His remarkable tribute to God’s glory was the fruit of Daniel’s influence on his life.

God doesn’t really need a lot of people to accomplish His work; He needs the right kind of people. And Daniel shows us the impact one person can have when he or she is sold out to God. That’s how it is throughout Scripture. For example, Noah was God’s man during the Flood, Joseph was God’s man in Egypt, Moses was God’s man in the Exodus, and Esther was God’s woman in the days of King Ahasuerus. So it continues right down to the present. When God puts His people in the right place, His message gets through.

As a Christian, you are God’s person in your family, school, or place of employment. He has placed you there as His ambassador to influence others for Christ. That’s a wonderful privilege and an awesome responsibility.

Suggestions for Prayer

Thank the Lord for His marvelous grace in your life and for the opportunities He gives you each day to share His love with others.

For Further Study

The key to Daniel’s fruitfulness, and to yours as well, is given in Psalm 1. Memorize that psalm, and recite it often as a reminder of God’s promises to those who live with biblical integrity.

Creation Groans

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You are surprised that the world is losing its grip? That the world is grown old? Don’t hold onto the old man, the world; don’t refuse to regain your youth in Christ, who says to you: ‘The world is passing away; the world is losing its grip; the world is short of breath. Don’t fear, your youth shall be renewed as an eagle.’

—Augustine of Hippo

Our Calling

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Chris Rice – Go Light Your World Lyrics

There is a candle in every soul
Some brightly burning, some dark and cold
There is a Spirit who brings a fire
Ignites a candle and makes His homeSo carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the helpless, confused and torn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your worldFrustrated brother, see how he’s tried to
Light his own candle some other way
See now your sister, she’s been robbed and lied to
Still holds a candle without a flameSo Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the lonely, the tired and worn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your worldCause We are a family whose hearts are blazing
So let’s raise our candles and light up the sky
Praying to our Father, in the name of Jesus
Make us a beacon in darkest times

So Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the helpless, deceived and poor
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world

Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the helpless, confused and torn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your world

 

THE PROMISE :)

4Him – The Promise

 

I’ve been watching You, holding on for me
But through the waiting and the wonder
Somehow You still believe
If Your faith is strong

Someday You will find
It may not be like You expect it
But I will come to You
In a perfect time

You may be waiting for the fire
When I’m calling through the rain
You may be listening for the thunder
While I’m whispering Your name

You may be searching for a sign
To let You know that it’s okay
Hold on ’cause I’m on my way

I came to Abraham, I was the sacrifice
And forty years I walked with Moses
Through the wilderness of life
I came to Bethlehem

I saw them crucify the Lamb
And as I rolled away the stone
I heard Him say
That He’s coming back again

You may be waiting for the fire
When I’m calling through the rain
You may be listening for the thunder
While I’m whispering Your name

You may be searching for a sign
To let You know that it’s okay
Hold on ’cause I’m on my way

Wisdom Of A Christian

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The most experienced psychologist or observer of human nature knows infinitely less of the human heart than the simplest Christian who lives beneath the Cross of Jesus. The greatest psychological insight, ability, and experience cannot grasp this one thing: what sin is. Worldly wisdom knows what distress and weakness and failure are, but it does not know the godlessness of man. And so it also does not know that man is destroyed only by his sin and can be healed only by forgiveness. Only the Christian knows this. In the presence of a psychiatrist I can only be a sick man; in the presence of a Christian brother I can dare to be a sinner. The psychiatrist must first search my heart and yet he never plumbs its ultimate depth. The Christian brother knows when I come to him: here is a sinner like myself, a godless man who wants to confess and yearns for God’s forgiveness. The psychiatrist views me as if there were no God. The brother views me as I am before the judging and merciful God in the Cross of Jesus Christ.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together: The Classic Exploration of Christian Community

And Even Closer Still

It seems I am becoming more bold in my desire to discuss the coming rapture.  We are so close… As August draws closer I can hardly contain my excitement…. US Solar Eclipse 8/21/17 followed 7 years later by another 4/8/24 to make a complete X over US.

At the center of the X will be the town of Carbondale, Ill (also known as Little Egypt)

Aug 2017 eclipse https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/solar/2017-august-21

April 2024 eclipse https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/solar/2024-april-8

solar eclipse history https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/solar-eclipse-history.html

interestingly the last total solar eclipse US was June 8, 1918 https://www.greatamericaneclipse.com/20th-century/

Soooo many many signs including but definitely not limited to the huge focus since election on Israel peace push… Jared Kushner’s (won’t even get started on everything concerning about him) visit to Israel today cause all the more bells and whistles to go off.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/jun/21/kushner-arrives-in-israel-tasked-with-progressing-trumps-ultimate-deal

not to mention the lotus flower (Egyptian symbolic keep in mind not Christian) art piece given to the Pope by Trump at his visit named of all things (Rise Above) all point to going home any moment brothers and sisters!!!  It really is a shame so many churches aren’t  trumpeting the sincere urgency of this time.

 

Facts on the Illuminati Lotus Flower http://nexusilluminati.blogspot.com/2014/10/blue-lotus-entheogen-of-ancient-egypt.html

 

 

Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. Revelation 3:10  (KJV)

Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.  Matthew 24:40 (KJV)

 

A Compassionate Heart

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Give me … a compassionate heart, quickly moved to grieve for the woes of others and to active pity for them, even as our Lord Jesus Christ beheld our poverty and hasted to help us. Give me grace ever to alleviate the crosses and difficulties of those around me, and never to add to them; teach me to be a counselor in sorrow, to take thought for the stranger, the widow, and the orphan; let my charity show itself not in words only but in deed and truth.

Johann Arndt  – German Lutheran theologian who deeply influenced the Pietists (1555-1621)

Universal Ruler

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This most beautiful system of the sun, planets, and comets could only proceed from the counsel and dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being. And if the fixed stars are the centers of other like systems, these, being formed by the like wise counsel, must be all subject to the dominion of One, especially since the light of the fixed stars is of the same nature with the light of the sun and from every system light passes into all the other systems; and lest the systems of the fixed stars should, by their gravity, fall on each other mutually, he hath placed those systems at immense distances from one another.

This Being governs all things not as the soul of the world, but as Lord over all; and on account of his dominion he is wont to be called “Lord God” . . . or “Universal Ruler.” . . . It is the dominion of a spiritual being which constitutes a God. . . And from his true dominion it follows that the true God is a living, intelligent and powerful Being. . . he governs all things, and knows all things that are or can be done. . . He endures forever, and is everywhere present; and by existing always and everywhere, he constitutes duration and space. . . In him are all things contained and moved; yet neither affects the other: God suffers nothing from the motion of bodies; bodies find no resistance from the omnipresence of God. . . As a blind man has no idea of colors so we have no idea of the manner by which the all-wise God preserves and understands all things. He is utterly void of all body and bodily figure, and can therefore neither be seen, nor heard, nor touched; nor ought to be worshipped under the representation of any corporeal thing. We have ideas of his attributes, but what the real substance of any thing is we know not…. Much less, then, have we any idea of the substance of God. We know him only by his most wise and excellent contrivances of things. . . We reverence and adore him as his servants, and a god without dominion, providence, and final causes, is nothing else but Fate and Nature. Blind metaphysical necessity, which is certainly the same always and everywhere, could produce no variety of things. All that diversity of natural things which we find suited to different times and places could arise from nothing but the ideas and will of a Being necessarily existing. . . And thus much concerning God, to discourse of whom from the appearances of things does certainly belong to Natural Philosophy.

Sir Isaac Newton – Principia mathematica (1687)

Homesick For Heaven

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“The Christian says, ‘Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well, there is such a thing as water. Men feel sexual desire: well, there is such a thing as sex. If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. If none of my earthly pleasures satisfy it, that does not prove that the universe is a fraud. Probably earthly pleasures were never meant to satisfy it, but only to arouse it, to suggest the real thing. If that is so, I must take care, on the one hand, never to despise, or to be unthankful for, these earthly blessings, and on the other, never to mistake them for the something else of which they are only a kind of copy, or echo, or mirage. I must keep alive in myself the desire for my true country, which I shall not find till after death; I must never let it get snowed under or turned aside; I must make it the main object of life to press on to that country and to help others to do the same.”

C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

Much is given

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Question: “What does it mean that ‘to whom much is given, much will be required’ (Luke 12:48)?”

Answer: “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked” (Luke 12:48). This statement of Jesus has become somewhat of an idiom in Western culture and is found, paraphrased, in Uncle Ben’s words of wisdom to Peter Parker in Spider-man: “With great power comes great responsibility.”

The idea of “to whom much is given, much will be required” is that we are held responsible for what we have. If we are blessed with talents, wealth, knowledge, time, and the like, it is expected that we use these well to glorify God and benefit others.

In context, Jesus had just told a parable about being ready for His return. His disciple Peter asked if the parable was for just them or for everyone. Jesus replied with another parable in which He defines the “faithful and wise manager” as one who gives out food and other allowances “at the proper time.” When the master returns and finds the faithful servant managing his resources well, he “put him in charge of all his possessions” (Luke 12:42–44). We have been entrusted with certain things, and faithfulness requires that we manage those things wisely and unselfishly.

Jesus continued the parable with a contrast: “Suppose the servant says to himself, ‘My master is taking a long time in coming,’ and he then begins to beat the other servants, both men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk. The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the unbelievers. The servant who knows the master’s will and does not get ready or does not do what the master wants will be beaten with many blows” (Luke 12:44–47). The unfaithful servant mismanages the master’s resources to satiate his own greed, and Jesus warns that judgment is certain for that servant. The Lord then summarizes the point of the parable with these words: “Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more” (verse 48, ESV). A related parable that also deals with stewardship is the Parable of the Talents (or the Parable of the Bags of Gold) in Matthew 25:14–30.

It is easy to assume that only wealthy people have been “given much,” but, in truth, we have all been given much (1 Corinthians 4:7). We have been granted the abundant grace of God (Ephesians 1:3–10; 3:16–21; Romans 5:8–11; 8:14–17), the Word of God, and the gifts of the Holy Spirit (John 14:16–21; 16:13; Romans 12:6). “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms” (1 Peter 4:10).

We should also not assume that the less we know about God and His gifts, the less we’ll have to do. As evident in Jesus’ parable, we are held responsible to know our master’s will. God has plainly shown us what He requires (Micah 6:8).

God gives us resources such as finances and time, talents such as culinary skills or musical ability, and spiritual gifts such as encouragement or teaching. We should ask God for wisdom on how to use those resources and commit ourselves to expending them according to His will so that He may be glorified. In regards to spiritual gifts, Paul said, “We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully” (Romans 12:6–8). This is simply responsible stewardship.

We have been given much, and God desires us to use what He has given to further His Kingdom and proclaim His glory. It’s what we were created to do. “Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. . . . For the Son of Man . . . will reward each person according to what they have done’” (Matthew 16:24–25, 27). We are living sacrifices (Romans 12:1), giving the things God has given us in service to others, and in that we actually find life. God, the giver of all good things (James 1:17), gives us everything we need to fulfill His will. “Freely you have received; freely give” (Matthew 10:8).

 

https://www.gotquestions.org/much-given-required.html

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

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We are fearfully and wonderfully made for we are the work of the Father’s hand. What a comfort and joy to know that although we do not see the Lord He not only sees us but knows us intimately and has each of one us in His thoughts constantly. He fashioned and formed us – He selected our parentage and scheduled every day of our lives. Each one of us can say with certainty:- Your eyes saw me in my mother’s womb, before my body was even formed and You have scheduled every one of my days – everything about me is written in Your book and planned before I was even born.

There is nothing for us to fear – nothing to concern our hearts, for whether we ‘feel’ it or not His word is true. We are the children of the omniscient, omnipotent God of the universe. He has searched our hearts and He knows us, He knows our every move and each fleeting thought that passes through our hearts, He knows whether we are waking or sleeping and understands our inner thoughts and the desires of our hearts. He is before us and He is behind us – He is within us and He dwells in the inner recesses of our heart. He is our guard and He is our guide and wherever we go and no matter whatever happens to us – He is there to lead and to guide to comfort and to succour.

When we know what we believe and believe what we know we should have no fear for He is with us – His rod and His staff are our comfort for he knows and cares for You and for me with a blessed intimacy.

 

http://www.knowing-jesus.com/psalm-139-16/

 

Ready For Battle

Hoorah!  What an awesome and powerful truth!!! I’m ready for today’s battle… Praise Jesus!!!

 

Script from video…

I Will Fight
——————

The Christian life is not a playground; it’s a battle ground.
So today, I will give no place to fear or failure.
I will not accept a trace of apathy in my attitude or actions.
I will reject complacency and embrace the greatness that God has planted inside of me.
I will waste no opportunity to glorify God and maximize everything He has entrusted to me.

I Will Fight.

My battle is not against flesh and blood, but against a spiritual enemy who opposes me.
So, I will draw the battle lines and face my enemy with a bold determination.
I will dismantle every argument and pretension that he presents, which contradicts what God has spoken.
My enemy fights against me because he fears me.
And every time he reminds me of my past, I will remind him of his future.
Every time I resist him, he must flee.
And every time I speak the truth, every stronghold must surrender.

I Will Fight.

I will make no excuses, but through every obstacle I will find a way.
I will not procrastinate my progress.
I will not defer my destiny.
I will not waiver when I’m weak.
I will not cower when my circumstances takes a turn for the worse.
Because greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world.

I Will Fight.

I will pursue, overtake, and recover everything that the enemy has come to kill, steal, and destroy in my life.
And even if I lose the battle, I will win the war because I am more than a conqueror, through Him who loves me.
I am raised to life with Jesus Christ and I reign with him because I look to Him for strength.
I will reject the lies that echo in my mind, telling me that I don’t have what it takes, that I cannot survive this trial, that my best is behind me, or that humiliation awaits me.
The devil is a liar and my God always causes me to triumph, through Jesus Christ my Lord…

I Will Fight.

I am unashamed to represent a kingdom that is unshakeable.
No one will be able to stand against God’s plan for me, all the days of my life.
With my God, I will advance against every troop.
With His help, I will scale every wall.
Though my enemies surround me, my God surrounds my enemies.
Though they may come at me one way, they will flee seven ways.
Because no weapon formed against me will prosper.
And every evil thing that rises against me I will condemn…

I Will Fight.

I have determined to build my life on the solid foundation of God’s perfect word.
By faith, I will activate every promise He has made.
And I will aim these promises as weapons of mass destruction, obliterating every opponent.
The weapons God has given me, have divine power.
I defy and defeat sin because of the finished work of Christ, my Savior.
I am wholeheartedly devoted to the cause God made me for.
And I have no intention of letting the world define me, because I know who I am:
A humble warrior.
A good soldier.
A strong and mighty servant, of the living God.
In Christ, I am courageous.
In Christ, I am confident.
My heart is steadfast.
My purpose is immovable.
I am always abounding in the work of the Lord.
And my potential is unlimited because the limitless God lives within me.

I Will Fight.

The cross is before me.
The world is behind me.
Ill never turn back.
I’ll never give up.
I’ll never settle.
I’ll never stop short.
I will press toward the mark for the prize that is already mine.
For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
Neither height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation shall be able to separate me from my God.
And if my God is for me, who can be against me.

I Will Fight.

 

Honoring God In An Unequally Yoked Marriage

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When a married couple are not on the same page spiritually, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to reconcile our differences in this area.

In some respects, you need to treat your spouse just as you would if he or she were a believer. If you’re the husband, you’re to love your wife as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it (Ephesians 5:25). If you’re the wife, you’re to treat your mate with respect as head of the house (Ephesians 5:22-23; I Peter 3:1). In fact, precisely because your spouse is not a Christian, it’s especially important to demonstrate daily what a Christian is. Your purpose: to attract him or her to a relationship with the Lord.

The apostle Paul advises that as the believer in the marriage, you’re to go the extra mile: “If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her. And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him . . . How do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife?” (I Corinthians 7:12-13, 16)

In other words, your first priority is your spouse’s spiritual welfare – not your own comfort level. Remember as well that your choices will affect the spiritual state of your children if you have any (I Corinthians 7:14). This is no time for a selfish decision.

Does this mean it will be easy for you to live with a non-believing spouse? On the contrary, it’s unusually difficult and demanding. After all, the two of you live in two different worlds. Trying to explain to a non-Christian spouse your deepest spiritual insights and feelings is like trying to describe colour to a person blind from birth. So be realistic about your situation. Remember that this is not a “preaching mission.” Don’t nag your spouse to “get right with the Lord.” If he or she is to be won at all, it will be through your love, respect and quiet example of genuine godliness.

Here are a few principles to keep in mind as you face the daily challenge of living with a mate who doesn’t share your deepest spiritual commitments:

1)    Be patient. Try to remember that God loves your spouse even more than you do. He may be taking your partner on a spiritual journey that you know nothing about. He may choose to use you in the process, but He doesn’t need your help. So don’t play the role of the Holy Spirit. Stay in prayer and trust the Lord to do what He wants to do.

2)    Don’t stand in the way. While perfection isn’t possible or even necessary, your behaviour can attract or repel your spouse where spiritual things are concerned. You’re living out what you’re experiencing with God. Is it appealing? Is your relationship with Christ making you a more enjoyable person to live with – or just a more religious one?

3)    Be authentic. You should not only share your faith with your spouse, but your concerns as well. In other words, don’t be afraid to reveal your personal weaknesses. It would be hypocritical to pretend that you’re not worried when you really are, or that you don’t have doubts when you really do. Your transparency can be especially healing if your mate has felt – accurately or not – that spirituality has become a competition in your marriage. The spouse who struggles with faith issues needs a “safe” and gentle partner to come home to. A holier-than-thou approach is sure to deepen the divide – not only between your partner and yourself, but also between your partner and God.

4)     Stay balanced. There’s no doubt about the importance of faith. But it’s possible to lose a healthy perspective when you’re worried about your spouse’s spiritual welfare. You can’t be too devoted to Christ, but overspiritualization and hyper-religiosity will hinder your efforts as much as falling into the opposite error of apathy.

5)    Examine the reasons. Take time to explore and understand the underlying reasons for your spouse’s skepticism. What was his religious experience as a child? Was his faith nurtured or hindered? Was his parents’ faith real and meaningful or a hypocritical chore? The Bible is clear: we’re not authorized to judge others (Matthew 7:1). Sometimes in marriage we’re prone to judge because of what we know – or think we know – about our spouses. Only God can see the individual heart.

 

 

 

https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/honoring-god-in-an-unequally-yoked-marriage

Forgive Others As He Did For You

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Forgiveness

We all appreciate being forgiven, but forgiving others, especially when they have wounded us, feels like a different thing. Emotions get involved. We decide they need to suffer for the hurt they’ve caused, and we delay offering forgiveness, sometimes for years, decades, or forever.

Getting Even Instead of Forgiving

When we hurt, we want the person who is the source or that wound to hurt as much as we do. But the Bible provides a different perspective.

“Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God, for he has said that he will repay those who deserve it. Don’t take the law into your own hands” (Romans 12:19TLB).

Forgiving Those Who Don’t Ask for Forgiveness

As Jesus suffered on the cross, he asked God to forgive those who wrongly condemned him to death. Often those who offend us never ask for our forgiveness or admit any wrong-doing. Forgiving these people is perhaps the hardest. But Jesus is our example for forgiving those who don’t appear to be sorry or ask to be forgiven.

“Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing” (Mark 11:25 NIV).

“The one who forgives an offense seeks love, but whoever repeats a matter separates close friends” (Proverbs 17:9 NET).

Forgiving Others

While it may seem forgiving others is to their advantage, you are really the one who benefits most. Unforgiveness breeds anger, and swallowed anger results in depression. When you choose to forgive others, you give yourself a gift. Once you decide to forgive, you can move on with your life instead of stagnating in hurt and resentment, and in forgiving, you mirror a forgiving God.

“If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6: 14-15 NLT).

“Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others” (Colossians 3:13 NLT).

“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32 NIV).

Asking for Forgiveness

It’s easier to recognize sin in others, than to see it in ourselves. Pride gets in the way, and often, we make excuses for our actions. But the Bible tells us unconfessed sin and unforgiveness block our relationship with God.

“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift” (Matthew 5:23-24 NIV).

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9 KJV).

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV).

God’s Forgiveness

“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace” (Ephesians 1:7 NIV).

“Therefore, my friends, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you” (Acts 13:38 NIV).

“The Lord our God is merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against him” (Daniel 9:9 NIV).

“O Lord, you are so good and kind, so ready to forgive, so full of mercy for all who ask your aid” (Psalm 86:5 TLB).

 

 

Copyright 2016 Candy Arrington. Used by permission.

Are You Rapture Ready

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Love this…

Original Link to this checklist Here



Are You Rapture Ready? A Bible Study from Anne Graham Lotz

By Anne Graham Lotz   •   April 24, 2017

Several days before I am due to go on a trip, I begin to plan and prepare for it. My executive assistant briefs me on what my responsibilities will be. My travel assistant goes over flight and hotel arrangements, as well as alerting me to departure and arrival times. I decide the messages I will give and the clothes I will wear. I make arrangements for my pets to be cared for and my home to be secure in my absence. And to make sure nothing is forgotten or overlooked, I make a checklist that I continually reference. Preparing to leave takes time, thought and energy.

The Bible teaches that all followers of Jesus are to plan and prepare for a “trip.” The trip is not only undertaken when we move to Heaven following death, but it is also a very unique one that will take place at the end of human history as we have known it. We are told that believers in the last generation will not experience physical death, but will be caught up in what is called the “rapture”… the “snatching away”… to meet Jesus in the air and be reunited with loved ones who have died in Christ and have gone before us. It will be the trip of a lifetime—a trip that is out of this world. Are you ready?

Read John 14:1-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 1 Corinthians 15:51-58.

I. THE COMING TRIP

  • What is the primary purpose of the trip, also known as the rapture? Read John 14:1-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; and 1 Thessalonians 5:10.
  • What phrases indicate we will leave suddenly? See 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 and Matthew 24:36-44.
  • Are you ready to leave at a moment’s notice?
  • What are two blessings of knowing about our trip in advance? Read Matthew 24:44; 1 Thessalonians 4:18; and 1 Thessalonians 5:11.

II. THE CHECKLIST

A. Abounding in Love

  • Where does the command to love others come from? See John 13:34-35 and 1 Thessalonians 4:9.
  • Give aspects of this love from the following verses: Romans 12:10; Galatians 5:13; 1 Peter 1:22; 3:8; and 1 Corinthians 13:4-7.
  • What is our motivation to love, as shown in 1 John 3:23 and 1 John 4:11?
  • Who do you know who needs to hear of God’s love as expressed in John 3:16 before you leave?

B. Established in Faith

  • How is faith established, in Romans 10:17?
  • What do you need to do to make sure your faith is established … rooted … grounded?
  • Who do you need to help establish authentic faith before you go?
  • Will genuine faith be a common characteristic of people before Jesus returns? Read Proverbs 20:6; Luke 18:8; and Matthew 24:10.
  • How critical is our faith as we prepare for the trip? Read Hebrews 11:5-6; Romans 5:1-2; and 1 Corinthians 15:13-20.
  • As life becomes more difficult in the last days before we take our trip, what difference does our faith make? Read Matthew 7:24-27.
  • What do you need to do to obey the commands in 1 Corinthians 16:13?

C. Confident in Hope

  • What is our hope, as given in Titus 2:13?
  • How does Peter describe our hope in 1 Peter 1:3-5?
  • Is Biblical hope half-hearted? Read 1 Peter 1:13.
  • Put Psalm 33:20 into your own words, as a prayer.
  • Putting 2 Peter 3:9 with 3:15, why have we not left yet?
  • Who do you know who seems hopeless concerning the future? How can you share your confidence with him or her?

D. Unblamable in Holiness

  • Define holiness from 2 Corinthians 7:1 and 1 Thessalonians 4:3-7.
  • Explain in your own words what it means to be holy.
  • How important is it to be found holy when Jesus returns for us? Read Hebrews 12:14 and 2 Peter 3:11-14.
  • Is holiness optional? See 1 Peter 1:15-16 and 1 John 2:28.
  • What do you need to do now to be more holy today than you were yesterday? More holy tomorrow than you are today?

E. Steadfast in Service

  • As the time for our trip draws near, what two types of servants does Jesus describe in Matthew 24:45-51?
  • Why are some servants not steadfast? Read 2 Peter 3:3-7 and Matthew 25:5.
  • What encouragement do you receive from 1 Corinthians 15:58? Galatians 6:9? See also 1 Corinthians 3:11-15 and Matthew 25:21, 23.
  • What is your service for Jesus? How can you serve Him even more as the time for departure draws near?

III.  THE CLARION CALL

  • How will we know when it’s time to leave? Read 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.
  • When the call to leave comes, will you be ready?
  • What items on your checklist will you wish you had “packed?”
  • We haven’t left yet, so there is still time to increase and excel in each item on the checklist. Ask God to help you prepare so that you are rapture ready.

“May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.” (1 Thessalonians 3:12-13).
©2017 Anne Graham Lotz