April 30, 2014

An Eternal Memorial

Exodus 3:13-15And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I Am hath sent me unto you. And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, the Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.

When God calls Moses to return to Egypt to bring the people out that land, Moses asks what will the people say the name of the God of our fathers is. God says that His name is I AM, I AM THAT I AM. This is God’s name forever. It is His memorial unto all generations.

As Jesus testified before the Pharisees concerning His Father, He explained His own existence as God. Jesus said that before Abraham was, I AM (John 8:58, read entire chapter for context). Jesus is God who became flesh (John 1:1-14); the image of the invisible God; the firstborn of every creature; He is before all things, and by Him all things consist; He is the head of the body of the church: who is the beginning (Colossians 1:12-18).

I AM is His name forever.

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By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,God   -  Tags:      

Exodus 3:7-8 And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows; And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites.

The Lord Himself had seen the affliction of the children of Israel and has heard their cry. He previously stated that after four hundred years of affliction in Egypt, Abram’s seed would be delivered (Genesis 15:13-16). That nation of people would return to the land promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Israel (Jacob) after the iniquity of the Amorites was full (Genesis 15:16).

As we face afflictions, trials, tests, and difficult times, may we not forget that God sees and hears our afflictions and will deliver us in due time. Let us be faithful unto Him and wait for His deliverance and restoration.

Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Additional scriptures: Exodus 2:23-25, Psalm 11:4, 33:13, 34:17, 145:19; Hebrews 4:13

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By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,God,Help,Patience,Perseverance   -  Tags:                

April 29, 2014

Help in Leadership

As Jethro watched Moses judge all of the cases of Israel, he said this thing was not good. He said it would wear away both him and the people (Exodus 18:13-26). He suggested he receive help from among the people to assist him in judging the smaller cases. The men Jethro proposed would be:

1. Able men 2. Men that fear God 3. Men of truth 4. Hating covetousness

Men such as this would ensure justice, fairness, and obedience to the Lord (and His statutes).

Such men were needed for Moses and they are needed today. Many businesses and ministries suffer because people of this caliber were not selected for leadership positions. Instead we find scandals, abuse, embezzlement, and mistreatment.

Be very selective of those you allow on your leadership staff. Pray to the Lord for people of Jethro’s caliber to lead within your church, organization, community, and nation.

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By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,Help,Leadership   -  Tags:

Exodus 32:1-6And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. And Aaron said unto them, Break off the golden earrings, which are in the ears of your wives, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring them unto me. And all the people brake off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them unto Aaron. And he received them at their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, after he had made it a molten calf: and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, To morrow is a feast to the Lord. And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play.

Leaders are responsible for the conduct of those under their responsibility. They are to enforce and emulate established standards and conduct. When followers violate such standards (or even desire to), leaders must be willing to quickly correct, discipline, and re-enforce the standards to ensure those under their care continue to comply. Doing this will silence any widespread violations of standards and ensure everyone conducts themselves properly.

1. Followers will test your boundaries. Followers will test the establish standard out of their own desire to live by their own rules. Some will rebel for no reason other than not wanting to follow standards. Others will do what they want when the leader is not watching.

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By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,Decisions/Guidance,Integrity,Leadership,People   -  Tags:  

April 28, 2014

An Honorable Work

Exodus 36:1-3Then wrought Bezaleel and Aholiab, and every wise hearted man, in whom the Lord put wisdom and understanding to know how to work all manner of work for the service of the sanctuary, according to all that the Lord had commanded. And Moses called Bezaleel and Aholiab, and every wise hearted man, in whose heart the Lord had put wisdom, even every one whose heart stirred him up to come unto the work to do it: And they received of Moses all the offering, which the children of Israel had brought for the work of the service of the sanctuary, to make it withal. And they brought yet unto him free offerings every morning.

The Lord brought His Spirit upon Bezaleel, Aholiab, and every wise hearted man giving him wisdom, understanding, and knowledge to perform all manner of work in the service of the sanctuary (Exodus 31:1-11). The Lord does the same with us by giving His Spirit throughout the body of believers to accomplish His purpose for His glory. Paul identified spiritual gifts given through the Spirit in 1 Corinthians 12. It was not for one person or spiritual gift to be considered greater than another, but for the body of believers to be as one…one in suffering, and one in rejoicing. The gifts are given for the edification of the entire body, not only one or two. They are given for the perfecting of the body of believers may be whole and complete, not lacking any thing (Ephesians 4:7-16).

Even beyond the spiritual gifts listed in 1 Corinthians 12, many people are given gifts from the Spirit of God to cook, clean, solve math problems, drive, etc. Our gifts and talents are not only used to provide for our own substance and wealth, but as a means to acknowledge and glorify the Lord (Deuteronomy 8:18; Matthew 5:14-16). May you find joy in whatever service the Lord calls you, and appreciate the work and efforts of others.

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By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,Business   -  Tags:      

April 27, 2014

Mirrored Holiness

Leviticus 11:44-45 For I am the Lord your God: ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy: neither shall ye defile yourselves with any manner of creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. For I am the Lord that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.

1. To sanctify is to set apart. The Lord called the children of Israel to sanctify themselves. To sanctify is to set apart from something or someone. It is a conscience and moral decision to separate (and cleanse) one’s self from sinful and defiling actions, people, and situations. It is a commitment to the ways of God.

2. Be holy as I am holy. The Israelites were called to holiness. He wanted them to duplicate His character and nature. As we receive a similar call to be holy as God is holy (1 Peter 1:15), we should also consider God’s character and nature. God forgives. He is patience and kind. God doesn’t take advantage of others or mistreats them for His own purposes. He is not selfish or inconsiderate of others. God is love (1 John 4:7-8).

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.com/camptown

By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,Gods Will,Holiness   -  Tags:      

John 2:13-17And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise. And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.

Jesus drove out the money-changers and those in the temple selling oxen, sheep, and doves. Even though much of their merchandise for the purchase of providing offerings for the temple unto God, it dishonored the purchase the temple was meant to accomplish as a house of prayer.

Many churches today have coffee shops, book stores, and other stores within their building. Though there may be good intentions for providing convenience services, ministry products to the congregation, or establishing other revenue streams, these intentions cannot be placed above our Father’s honor and glory.

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By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,Church,Integrity,Ministry/Service   -  Tags:          

Matthew 5:43-48 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

If you want to be perfect as your Father is perfect:

1. Love your enemies.

2. Bless them that curse you.

3. Do good to them that hate you.

4. Pray for them that despitefully use you and persecute you.

We were once enemies of God, yet He showed us mercy through Jesus. He blessed us though we cursed Him. He was good to us, even when we hated Him. Jesus prayed for us when we were selfish, hateful, evil, and filled with sin. The Lord has shown us His perfection. May we show our perfection by loving, blessing, and praying for our enemies.

Photo courtesy of freeimages.com/OzRock79

By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,Gods Will,Love   -  Tags:

John 7:18 He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him.

Our reason for speaking is founded either for our own pleasure or the pleasure of others (whoever that may be). As Jesus identifies, those that speak of themselves, only seek their own glory. They want people to marvel and be astounded at their gifts, talents, possessions, and works. Additionally, their speaking reveals how they seek their own pleasures of living in the world.

However, those that will seek the glory of the Father (the one that sent Jesus), will speak of God and Him alone. In addition, Jesus says that no unrighteousness is in that person. A person that seeks to glorify God (and not themselves) will be found righteous in the sight of God.

Photo courtesy of freeimages.com/omacaco.

By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,People,Pride/Humility,Purpose   -  Tags:

April 26, 2014

Choked Out

Luke 8:14 And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.

Many believers are affected by the thorns of life. The cares, riches, and pleasures of this life chokes out a life wholly dedicated to God.

When people are more concerned about the riches and pleasures of this life, they are not concerned about their afterlife and how they prepare for it. They are only concerned about the here and now, pleasures which satisfy the soul, but not spirit. Though the believer produces fruit, it cannot grow to perfection. It does not have the proper setting (within the heart, mind, or soul) to mature. It will be lacking, unable to meet its potential, and short of the standard it was always meant to meet.

In order for us to enjoy fruit borne to perfection, we must be able to cast off the cares, riches, and pleasures of this life that were once the object and affection of our hearts. We must be able to delight in the Lord and allow Him to be our joy and reward.

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By: Spiritual Combatants   -  In: April 2014,Christian Living,Holiness,Righteous   -  Tags:



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