Friday, January 24, 2020

Never Disappear

"In the beginning You laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You remain; they will all wear out like a garment. Like clothing You will change them and they will be discarded." (Psalm 102:25-26) 




"But in keeping with His promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth,
where righteousness dwells." (2 Peter 3:13)


The present universe as we know it will someday disappear. Everything that is corrupted by sin will pass away. There will be a new heaven and a new earth. See, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind." (Isaiah 65:17)



"Your Word, Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens." (Psalm 119:89) The only sure thing in this uncertain world is God's Word. Jesus is God; therefore, His words stand firm forever and will never disappear. We can believe whatever He says because His words are true and never change. In context of Matthew 24, Jesus refers to His promise that He will return. He indeed is coming again. The promise of Christ's second coming gives us His followers hope and encouragement in this dark and hopeless world. "Don't complain about what this world is coming to. Proclaim the One Who is coming to this world!" (Unknown)

"Amidst all the revolutions on earth, the fading glories of natural objects, and the wasting strength of man, God's truth remains unaffected. Its beauty never fades; its power is never enfeebled. The gospel system is as lovely now as when it was first revealed to man, and it has as much power to save as it had when first applied to the human heart." (Barnes) Focus on what matters. "Lord, stamp eternity on my eyeballs." (Jonathan Edwards) It is indeed foolish to put our trust in anything temporal. Trust in Jesus and trust what He says for His words are trustworthy, living, active, and enduring/ indestructible.

"Before the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947, the oldest Hebrew manuscripts dated about A. D. 900. The Dead Sea Scrolls, in startling agreement with the Masoretic text, dated to about 150 B.C. But now archaeologists have discovered a pair of tiny silver scrolls that date back to about 600 B.C.! While digging at the site of a fifth-century church in Jerusalem, researchers found a Roman legionnaires' cemetery. Exploring still deeper, they found a small burial cave containing the scrolls. Very carefully, less than a hundredth of an inch at a time, the scrolls were unrolled. On each of them appeared an excerpt from the book of Numbers that included the word Jehovah. And these scrolls date back to the days before the exile to Babylon, earlier than liberal scholars supposed that the Pentateuch had even been written! The Bible has been wonderfully and accurately preserved. Copies of portions of the New Testament, dating to within fifty years of the original manuscripts, have been found, and they coincide with what we have today. The Bible can be trusted as the inspired, inerrant Word of God." (D. C. Egner)



"THIS BOOK contains the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners and the happiness of believers.

Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its histories are true, and its decisions are immutable.

Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe and practice it to be holy.

It contains light to direct you, food to support you and comfort to cheer you.

It is the traveler's map, the pilgrim's staff, the pilot's compass, the soldier's sword and the Christian's character.

Here paradise is restored, heaven opened and the gates of hell disclosed.

Christ is its grand object, our good is its design and the glory of God its end.

It should fill the memory, rule the heart, and guide the feet.

Read it slowly, frequently, and prayerfully.

It is given you in life and will be opened in the judgment and will be remembered forever.

It involves the highest responsibility, will reward the greatest labour, and will condemn all who trifle with its sacred contents." (Unknown) 

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for the gift of Your eternal Word! Your Word gives me hope, comfort, strength, peace, guidance, understanding, confidence, and encouragement. Please help me to faithfully study, memorize, and live out Your Word. Please empower me to boldly share Your gospel with the lost. Please open their eyes to see that You're the only Hope in this sinful, wicked world!



Thursday, January 23, 2020

Every Word of God Is Flawless


"Every word of God is flawless; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. Do not add to His words, or He will rebuke you and prove you a liar." (Proverbs 30:5-6)

Every word of God is pure and flawless. God's Word is perfect and true, powerful and trustworthy.  We cannot always rely on people's words but we can confidently rely on God's Word always. God is a Shield to those who take refuge/put their trust in Him. "The Lord is my Strength and my Shield; my heart trusts in Him, and He helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise Him." (Psalm 28:7) He gives us His Word for our protection from sin, Satan, worldliness, errors, and false doctrines. "You are my Hiding Place and my Shield; I hope in Your Word." (Psalm 119:114)

Since God's Word is already pure and perfect, there's no need to change any of it whatsoever. We must never corrupt it by adding our own opinions or speculations. God will rebuke those who add to or subtract from His words and prove them a liar. There are serious consequences.
"I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll. And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll." (Revelation 22:18-19) In addition, beware of those who misuse Scriptures (taking some verses out of context or twisting Scriptures to fit their own agenda).


Prayer: Thank You, Father, for Your Holy Word that transforms, teaches, guides, encourages, and comforts me! Oh how precious Your Words are to me! Thank You for being my Strength and my Shield! You are my Hiding Place; I will always trust in You and in Your Word.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

God's Word Will Accomplish What God Desires

God's thoughts are certainly higher than our thoughts because God is infinite but we are finite. He knows everything; we know so little. "The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law." (Deuteronomy 29:28) God reveals what we need to know. The rest remains mysteries. "Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; His greatness no one can fathom." (Psalm 145:3) God knows the future; we don't. "Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to an all-knowing God." (Corrie ten Boom) God possess infinite wisdom. God's thoughts are pure and holy; our thoughts are tainted by sin. Therefore, we must trust God and His Word (which reveals His thoughts). "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding." (Proverbs 3:5)  And always pray for God's will because God knows what's best for us. "This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us." (1 John 5:14)

God's ways (how He works things out or how He answers prayers, etc.) are definitely higher (better) than our ways. "There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death." (Proverbs 14:12) People have tendency to rely on their own thoughts, ideas, and ways, rather than on God's Word. When we trust/rely on selves without regard for God, we are in trouble. Look at what happened when Satan deceived Eve by convincing her to focus on her own reasoning/idea (of what's best for her) rather than what God (Who knew what's best for her) said. She failed to trust God's ways. God's Word says, "Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts. Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for He will freely pardon." (Isaiah 55:7)

God's thoughts and ways surpass human's understanding. It's impossible for us fully comprehend God's thoughts or His dealings. Therefore, we must trust God's Word and God's ways, even when we don't understand. Be thankful that God's answers are always wiser than our prayers. It's okay to ask God why but don't expect Him to explain everything. God does whatever He pleases. He doesn't owe to us to give account of any of His matters. We should be content to know that God is good and faithful and He has our best interest because He loves us. God tells us to trust Him at all times, not to understand everything. God's Word says He is always with us. God's Word says all things work together for good to those who love God and have been called according to His purpose. God can and does overrule and work even through tragedies, failures, and mistakes, to accomplish His purpose. Trust God and His WordGod is too good to be unkind and He is too wise to be mistaken. And when we cannot trace His hand, we must trust His heart.” (Charles Spurgeon)

The rain and snow do not come down from heaven in vain (they make the earth fertile); neither does God's Word. God's Word always produces fruit. God's Word will always accomplish what He desires and achieve His purpose. Never underestimate the power of God's Word. Keep sharing His Word and the gospel with others. Keep planting seeds; God can make it grow.

Prayer: Abba Father, I am so glad and thankful that Your thoughts and Your ways are far beyond what I can comprehend and that You are sovereign over all! It demonstrates how great and wonderful and majestic You really are and it gives me peace, comfort, and contentment to know that my life is in Your capable, wise, holy, and merciful Hand. Please empower me to walk by faith, not by sight or by feelings. Thank You for Your Word that encourages me, guides me, transforms me, sanctifies me, strengthens me, and shows me how to live for You! Please enable me to faithfully and boldly share Your Word and the gospel with others. In Jesus' Name, I pray. Amen.



Tuesday, January 21, 2020

All Scripture

"All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

The whole Bible is God's inspired Word. The Bible is not human ideas about God. Through the Holy Spirit, God revealed His person and plan to certain believers who wrote down His message. "Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation of things. For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit." (2 Peter 1:20-21) The writers wrote down what God wanted them to write. All Scripture is completely trustworthy because God was in total control of its writing from beginning to end.

God's Word is entirely authoritative and profitable for our faith and our lives. It's useful for teaching us about Who God is, what God does, what God desires, how to be saved, and all that God wants us to know & apply it to our lives. Doctrine (Scriptural teaching on theological truths) matters. If we are not thinking rightly/Biblically (having sound doctrine), we cannot be living rightly. The Bible is our standard for testing what we hear/are taught. "Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true." (Acts 17:11) We are to "measure" what is sung and preached in our churches against the plumb line of God's Word. It's our safeguard against false teaching/false doctrines.

God's Word is useful for rebuking/reproof. The Scripture is the Spirit's tool for convicting us of our wrongdoing. The Scripture exposes all sins, error, and falsehood. "For the Word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." (Hebrews 4:12)

God's Word is useful for correcting those who are in error. It shows us where we go wrong and directs us to the right path. It restores and straightens us to the proper condition.

God's Word is useful for training us in righteousness/Godliness/Christlikeness. It's our source of guidance for how we should live. It trains us to become spiritually mature.

The Scripture's purpose is to
thoroughly equip us, servants of God, to do good work...to do God's work in the world for God's glory. 



"Your thoughts are here, my God,
Expressed in words divine,
The utterance of heavenly lips
 

In every sacred line." (Bonar)

Prayer: Thank You, Abba Father, for speaking to me through Your Word! Please help me to learn what You want me to learn and to be doers of the Word, not just hearers. Please enable me to continually hide Your Word in my heart so that I may not sin against You. Please equip me for Your kingdom work. In Jesus' Name, I pray. Amen.

Monday, January 20, 2020

God Revealed Himself Through His Word

"The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul.
The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever.
The decrees of the Lord are firm, and all of them are righteous."
(Psalm 19:7-9)

God has not only revealed Himself through His wonderful works (creation), but also through His written Word. There are two types of God's revelation: general revelation (creation and conscience) and special revelation (the written Word and the Incarnate Word). In order to know God's heart, attributes, and will, we must read God's Word. In these verses, six names are used for God's written Word: the law of the Lord, the statutes of the Lord, the precepts of the Lord, the commands of the Lord, the fear of the Lord, and the decrees of the Lord. "When David described Creation, He used Elohim, the name that speaks of God’s great power; but when he wrote about God’s Word, seven times he used the “covenant” name Jehovah, for the God of creation is also the God of personal revelation to His people." (Warren Wiersbe)
The law of the Lord
(Jehovah) is perfect (flawless) and complete. It revives/refreshes, restores, heals, and strengthens our soul as the law of the Lord gives us instruction, doctrine, and direction which
nourish and enrich us. Scripture is the essential soul food to sustain our spiritual growth.

The statutes (testimonies) of the Lord are trustworthy, true, sure, and dependable. They make us wise because they are a wealth of wisdom which guides us in our life's journey and counsels us through our problems. Wisdom is knowing how to respond rightly to life's situations, making right decisions, and being able to follow the best course of action, based on knowledge and understanding. God's Word provides spiritual wisdom that we need.

The precepts (principles/rules) of the Lord are right. God's principles and rules bring joy (when we obey them) because they are given out of God's love for us, for our good, and for His glory and they are right for all situations of life.

The commands of the Lord are radiant. God's commands give light to the eyes (give discernment and insights for living). They take away our soul's blindness, help us see truth, make us aware of our sinfulness and our need for redemption, show us what to do and what not to do. They illuminate our life path and enable us to walk in it without stumbling. "Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path." (Psalm 119:105)


The fear of the Lord in this verse refers to "the revealed way in which God is to be feared". Studying God's Word should lead us to have a deep, humble reverence for God, His character, and His standards. The fear of the Lord is pure. God's Word cleanses our heart., purging away the love of sin, self, and worldliness. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction." (Proverbs 1:7) God's Word endures forever because it is grounded in the immutability of the Eternal God. The Bible has truly stood the test of time. 

The decrees (judgments) of the Lord are firm (certain, stable, reliable) and righteous (conforming to the nature and will of God).

It is profitable/nourishing to our soul to meditate on God's Word which helps us to know God more. God uses His Word to renew our mind and transform our hearts. We must be diligent in studying the Bible and fill our mind with God's Word so that we won't be wandering off the narrow path, be led astray by lies and false teaching, or be troubled by the worries of this world. Through God's Word, we're reminded of God's love, grace, mercy, and faithfulness, assured of God's power, providence, and promises, guided to stay on the right path, encouraged, and comforted. O how precious God's Word is! "They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the honeycomb. By them your servant is warned; in keeping them there is great reward." (Psalm 19:10) 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for the gift of Your Word through which You revealed Yourself to us! It's truly a treasure with incomparable wealth. It's my joy and delight to read, study, ponder, and apply Your Word. I love reading Your "Love Letter" to me again and again. I don't want to miss anything that helps me to know You more. Please empower me to understand Your Word correctly. Please guide me through this life to know and to do Your will always. In Jesus' Name, I pray. Amen.

"The Bible contains . . .
  the mind of God,
  the state of man,
  the way of salvation,
  the doom of sinners, and 
  the happiness of believers. 

Its doctrines are holy, 
its precepts are binding, 
its histories are true, and 
its decisions are immutable.

Read it to be wise, 
believe it to be safe, 
and practice it to be holy. 

The Bible contains . . .
  light to direct you,
  food to support you,
  and comfort to cheer you.

It is . . .
  the traveler's map,
  the pilgrim's staff,
  the pilot's compass,
  the soldier's sword and
  the Christian's charter. 

Here too, Heaven is opened--and the gates of Hell are disclosed.

Christ is its grand subject, 
our good is its design, and 
the glory of God is its end. 

The Bible should . . .
  fill the memory,
  rule the heart
  and guide the feet. 

Read it slowly, frequently and prayerfully.  

The Scripture is . . .
  a mine of wealth,
  a paradise of glory,
  and a river of pleasure!

It . . .
  is given to you in life,
  will be opened at the judgment,
  and be remembered forever. 

The Bible . . .
  involves the highest responsibility,
  rewards the greatest labor, and
  

  will condemn all who trifle with its sacred contents!"
(Unknown)



The chart below is taken from https://www.preceptaustin.org/psalm_197-14_commentary .
THE MULTI-FACETED ALL SUFFICIENT
WORD OF THE LORD
The Name of
the Word
The Character of
the Word
The Effect of
the Word
The Target
of the Word
Ps 19:7
Law
Teachings
Perfect
Whole
Complete
Sufficient
Lacking nothing
Good
Restoring
Transforming
Renewing
Reviving
Converting
Refreshing
Preserving
Life giving
Giving new strength
Soul
Life
Ps 19:7
Testimony
Witness
Decree
Sure
Trustworthy
Reliable
Steadfast
Dependable
Certain
Wisdom
Proper understanding of life,
of God,
of self,
of others
Simple
Ordinary People
Plain People
Inexperienced
Ps 19:8
Precepts
Orders
Statutes
Rules set down
Right
Correct
Upright
In accord w what is just & good
Appropriate & fitting
Fair
Joy
Sense of serenity
Making glad
Giving Well Being
Bringing Tranquility
Heart
"Control Center"
Ps 19:8
Commandment
Pure
Clear
Bright
Radiant
Untainted with evil or error
Enlightenment
Giving Insight for life
Lighting up one's way
Making the eyes light up
Eye
"Window to/of the soul"
Ps 19:9
Fear
Reverential Awe
Obedient Respect
Worshipful submission
Clean
Uncontaminated
Free from impurity
Undefiled
Enduring
Permanent, Unchanging,
Relevant, Up to date,
Never outdated
Never in need of alteration
(Mind)
Ps 19:9,11
Judgments
Decisions
Ordinances
True/Righteous
Correspond to & accurately reflect reality
"Tell it like it really is"
Reflect what is right
/Completely fair
/Absolutely just
Warning/Reward
Moral guidance/Spiritual riches
Make conscious of danger
(Will)


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