Tag Archives: Bible Study

Looking For The Presence Of God

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Looking For The Presence Of God

Luke 2:41-46 NKJV
“His parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the Passover. And when He was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem according to the custom of the feast. When they had finished the days, as they returned, the Boy Jesus lingered behind in Jerusalem. And Joseph and His mother did not know it, but supposing Him to have been in the company, they went a day’s journey, and sought Him among their relatives and acquaintances. So when they did not find Him, they returned to Jerusalem, seeking Him. Now so it was that after three days they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions.”

Under the law men were required to go to Jerusalem for the feast of the Passover. The people who lived outside of Jerusalem had to make the annual pilgrimage to Jerusalem. The Scriptures tell us that every year Joseph and Mary, along with Jesus, went to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover.
After they finished what the law required, Joseph and Mary gathered their things and headed back home. When they had traveled for one day, they began to look for Jesus. They did not find Him with their relatives or acquaintances that were traveling the same way as them.
Is it possible that since Joseph and Mary went to Jerusalem three times a year, year after year, that they had gotten into a routine? If you’ve been to many family gatherings, you will notice that the children always want to ride home with someone other than their parents. Maybe this was true of Jesus also. Maybe it was so routine that His parents assumed He was traveling back with His friends or cousins.
In the natural realm, they had allowed someone else to be responsible for Jesus so many times that when they did not see Him they assumed He was still with their group. They had allowed someone else to be responsible to carry the presence of the Lord. Instead of following along with the people making the journey back home, Jesus stayed in Jerusalem.
According to the Bible, years later, Jerusalem was the place where Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to fill the believers.

Acts 1: 4-5 NKJV
“And being assembled together with them, he commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

Jesus could have sent the believers anywhere to wait on the infilling of the Holy Spirit, but He chose Jerusalem. Jerusalem was a place of worship under the law. Many of the people that worshipped God in Jerusalem had a revelation of God, but not an intimate relationship with Him. When revelation and relationship (intimacy) come together mighty things happen.

Acts 2:1-4 NKJV
“When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place, And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”

It was in Jerusalem that the early believers ministered unto the Lord for many days, and as a result God filled the room where they were with His presence. The people in the upper room were baptized in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues. They weren’t just speaking anything-they were praising and worshipping God. They were giving glory to God.

Acts 2:11 NKJV
“Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.”

The Holy Spirit will help us worship God in spirit and in truth, just like He helped the early believers. The presence of God brings power and results. After Peter was baptized with the Holy Spirit, he stood up and spoke to the crowd. Because of the anointing upon him and the words that he spoke, many believed.

Acts 2:41 NKJV
“Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand
souls were added to them.”

After the people believed, the Bible tells us, that they fellowshipped in the breaking of bread and in prayers.

Acts 2:42 NKJV
“And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of
bread, and in prayers.”

This verse does not mean that they sat around eating all their meals together. The early church shared times of corporate worship and prayer as well as communion (breaking of bread). Communion is a very intimate time between you and God, even when taken together as a group.
The are times in our lives that we might be like Joseph and Mary. We happily travel along the
path we choose assuming that Jesus is with us. Once down the road we begin to “look” for the presence of Jesus, but He is no where to be found. Only then do we begin to seek His presence.

Luke 2:46 NKJV
“Now so it was that after three days they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the
teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions.”

When Joseph and Mary discovered that Jesus was not with them, they began to look for Him. They returned to Jerusalem, the last place that they had seen Him. Joseph and Mary found Jesus in the temple, a place of worship. When they became desperate for Him they found Him.

Matthew 7:7 NKJV
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”

James 4:8 NKJV
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”

All across the world, many people are traveling along assuming that the presence of the Lord is with them. They have a form of godliness, but no power.

2 Timothy 3:1-5 NKJV
“But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!”

Matthew 23:25-28 NKJV
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cleanse the outside of the cup and dish, but the inside they are full of extortion and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee, first cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.”

Like the early church, we need to rediscover what worshipping God in Spirit and in truth is.

John 4:23-24 NKJV
“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

God doesn’t just want you to know who He is, He wants an intimate relationship with you too. Many people know the name of God, but few know Him intimately.

Matthew 7:13-14 NKJV
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”

We need to allow our revelation and our relationship to come together- we need to “Return To Jerusalem”. Just like Joseph and Mary, when we become desperate for the presence of God we will find Him, in a place of worship.

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Review
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1. According to the second chapter of Luke, why were Jesus and His family in Jerusalem?
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2. How long (how many days) had Joseph and Mary traveled before they realized that Jesus was not with them?
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3. As a group name some reasons why Mary and Joseph might not have realized Jesus wasn’t with them.
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4. One definition of assume is to suppose something or to accept that something is true without checking or confirming it. Have you every assumed something only to later find out that you were wrong?
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5. What were the believers instructed to wait for?
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6. What did Jesus tell His followers that they would be baptized in?
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7. The people that worshiped in Jerusalem did not have what with God?
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8. When Jesus’ followers were gathered together they heard what?
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9. When the followers were filled with the Holy Spirit what happened?
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10. What were the people in the upper room doing when they were baptized in the Holy Spirit?
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11. One definition of minister is to give something to someone. How can you personally “minister” to God?
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12. The Holy Spirit filled Peter with boldness and as a result how many people were saved that day?
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13. What does communion mean to you?
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14. Jesus does not leave us, we leave Him. As a group, discuss and list some ways that we leave Jesus.
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15. Who is 2 Timothy 23:25-28 talking about?
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16. According to Matthew 7:13-14, how must we worship God?
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17. When we really become desperate for God, will we find Him?
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18. Has there ever been a time in your life that you were truly desperate for God and His presence?
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19. Write a prayer asking God to draw you closer to Him.
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I Will

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I Will

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Your life must be an expression of admiration of and worship to God.

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Bible Text:

Psalm 9:1-2

Deuteronomy 6:5

Psalm 9:1

Psalm 111:1

Hosea 10:1-2

Psalm 119:10

Psalm 119:10

Psalm 119:2

Psalm 24:3-5

Psalm 66:18

Matthew 5:8

Deuteronomy 32:3-4

Isaiah 60:1-6

Mark 1:39-45

1 Peter 2:9-10

Psalm 9:2

Psalm 31:7

Isaiah 25:9

Revelation 19:7

Exodus 15:21

1 Chronicles 16:23

Psalm 9:11

Psalm 13:6

Psalm 135:3

Isaiah 12:5

Isaiah 42:10

Psalm 9:1-2 NKJV

“I will praise You, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works.
I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.”

According to the above verse we should praise God with our whole heart, we should tell of God’s marvelous works, we should be glad and rejoice in God, and we should sing praises to God.

I. We should praise God with our whole heart.

A. Entire Heart

One definition of whole is entire. An entire heart is one that leaves nothing left out. Without a question God absolutely must have every part of our heart. He desires to be close to us. Things or people will not draw us closer to God.

1.) We are to love God with our entire heart.

Deuteronomy 6:5 NKJV

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.”

2.) We are to praise and worship God with our entire heart.

Psalm 9:1 NKJV

“I will praise You, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works.”

Psalm 111:1 NKJV

“Praise the Lord! I will praise the Lord with my whole heart, In the assembly of the upright and in the congregation.”

B. Undivided Heart

A second definition of whole is undivided. An undivided heart is one that is in agreement with God and of one mind with Him. God created within each of us a “place” or “spot” that only He can fill with His love. The world, or the things of the world, can not fill the place that belongs to God. Trying to fill this spot with other things, or people, only bring heartache and sadness. Our hearts cannot long for God and the world at the same time.

Hosea 10:1-2 NKJV

“Israel empties his vine; He brings forth fruit for himself. According to the multitude of his fruit He has increased the altars; According to the bounty of his land They have embellished his sacred pillars. Their heart is divided; Now they are held guilty. He will break down their altars; He will ruin their sacred pillars.”

God had blessed Israel with many things. Instead of being thankful they failed to express or feel gratitude for all that God had done for them. Instead of worshipping God they turned to idolatry. The Israelites were untrustworthy and hypocritical. The people claimed to worship God, but their actions said something different. Their hearts longed for the things of the world more than they did God.

God want you to long for Him, and Him alone, and to seek Him with your whole heart.

Psalm 119:10 NKJV

“With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!”

Psalm 119:10 NKJV

“With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!”

Psalm 119:2

“Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, Who seek Him with the whole heart!”

C. Unimpaired Heart

A third definition of whole is unimpaired. An unimpaired heart is a heart not marred by sin. God is holy and does not tolerate sin (impurities). When God created man (man and woman), they were pure. When sin entered the world man’s purity and innocence was lost. God had intended for us to be pure always, but because of sin we no longer were. We are all born into sin – we have all sinned and been made impure. But, if we accept Jesus and His gift of salvation, He makes us pure again.

1.) If you have sin in you will not receive true and lasting blessings from God.

Psalm 24:3-5 NKJV

“Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who may stand in His holy place?
He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, Nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive blessing from the Lord, And righteousness from the God of his salvation.”

2.) If you have sin in your heart God will not hear your prayers.

Psalm 66:18 NKJV

“If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear.”

3). If you have sin in your heart, you will not see God, however if you are pure in heart you will.

Matthew 5:8 NKJV

“Blessed are the pure in heart, For they shall see God.”

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1. We should praise God with our whole heart, we should tell of God’s _________________ _________, we should be glad and _______________ in God, and we should sing praises to God.

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2. God absolutely must have ____________ part of our heart.

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3. Will things or people draw us closer to God?

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4. God created within each of us a place that only He can fill with His ________________.

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5. When __________ entered the world man’s purity and innocence was lost.

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6. What does Psalm 66:18 say about sin in your life and prayer?

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II. We should tell of God’s marvelous works.

God does many wonderful and marvelous things (acts and deeds.) We should proclaim to others what He has done. Tell means to relate events or facts, to give an account in speech or writing of events, express something, to express a particular thing in speech, inform somebody, to inform somebody of something, express something in words to somebody, to express thoughts or feelings to somebody in words.

Works – acts. deeds or actions

Marvelous – amazingly impressive, extraordinarily wonderful, extremely good

Deuteronomy 32:3-4 NKJV

“For I proclaim the name of the Lord: Ascribe greatness to our God.
He is the Rock, His work is perfect; For all His ways are justice, A God of truth and without injustice; Righteous and upright is He.”

Isaiah 60:1-6 NKJV

“Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.
For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, And deep darkness the people; But the Lord will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you.
The Gentiles shall come to your light, And kings to the brightness of your rising.
“Lift up your eyes all around, and see: They all gather together, they come to you; Your sons shall come from afar, And your daughters shall be nursed at your side.
Then you shall see and become radiant, And your heart shall swell with joy; Because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you, The wealth of the Gentiles shall come to you.
The multitude of camels shall cover your land, The dromedaries of Midian and Ephah; All those from Sheba shall come; They shall bring gold and incense, And they shall proclaim the praises of the Lord.”

Mark 1:39-45 NKJV

“And He was preaching in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and casting out demons.
Now a leper came to Him, imploring Him, kneeling down to Him and saying to Him, “If You are willing, You can make me clean.”
Then Jesus, moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, “I am willing; be cleansed.”
As soon as He had spoken, immediately the leprosy left him, and he was cleansed.
And He strictly warned him and sent him away at once,
and said to him, “See that you say nothing to anyone; but go your way, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing those things which Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”
However, he went out and began to proclaim it freely, and to spread the matter, so that Jesus could no longer openly enter the city, but was outside in deserted places; and they came to Him from every direction.”

1 Peter 2:9-10 NKJV

“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;
who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.”

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7. We should ___________________to others what God has done.

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8. What does tell or proclaim mean?

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9. How can I personally tell or proclaim about God and His goodness?

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What examples from my life can I give?

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III. We should be glad and rejoice in God.

Our attitude to God concerning His mercy for us and the things that He has blessed us with should be gratitude.

Glad – delighted, happy and pleased, grateful, appreciative of or grateful for something .

Rejoice – be happy, to feel very happy or show great happiness about something.

Rejoiced in – have something desirable: to be lucky enough to have or own something.

Psalm 9:2 NKJV

“I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.”

Psalm 31:7 NKJV

“I will be glad and rejoice in Your mercy, For You have considered my trouble”

Isaiah 25:9 NKJV

“And it will be said in that day: “Behold, this is our God; We have waited for Him, and He will save us. This is the Lord; We have waited for Him; We will be glad and rejoice in His salvation.”

Revelation 19:7

Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.”

IV. We should sing praises to God.

Everywhere we go, and in everything that we do, we should praise God. We must live a life of praise. Our lives must be an expression of admiration of and worship to God.

Tell – tell about something, to praise somebody or proclaim something, especially in verse, be happy: to rejoice or be extremely happy

Praises – expression of admiration, words that express approval or admiration, e.g. for somebody’s achievements or for something’s good qualities, worship and thanks to God

Exodus 15:21 NKJV

“And Miriam answered them: “Sing to the Lord, For He has triumphed gloriously! The horse and its rider He has thrown into the sea!”

1 Chronicles 16:23 NKJV

“Sing to the Lord, all the earth; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day.”

Psalm 9:11 NKJV

“Sing praises to the Lord, who dwells in Zion! Declare His deeds among the people.”

Psalm 13:6 NKJV

“I will sing to the Lord, Because He has dealt bountifully with me.”

Psalm 135:3 NKJV

“Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good; Sing praises to His name, for it is pleasant.”

Isaiah 12:5 NKJV

“Sing to the Lord, For He has done excellent things; This is known in all the earth.”

Isaiah 42:10 NKJV

“Sing to the Lord a new song, And His praise from the ends of the earth, You who go down to the sea, and all that is in it, You coastlands and you inhabitants of them!”

10. What should our attitude be toward God concerning His mercy and grace?

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11. When and where should we praise God?

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12. Our lives must be an ___________________ ______ ___________________of and worship to God.

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13. What does entire mean?

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How can I personally worship God with an entire heart?

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14. What does undivided mean?

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How can I personally worship God with an undivided heart?

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15. What does unimpaired mean?

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How can I personally worship God with an unimpaired heart?

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The Baby Grew Up

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The Baby Grew Up

m1Thousands and thousands will gather and sing about Jesus’ birth, but will reject His authority. They adore Him as an infant, but ignore that He came to take their punishment for their sin. They reject the true meaning of the cross. The majority of the people in this world are happy to let Jesus be a baby in a manger, but not willing to acknowledge that He is the Son of God, the second person in the trinity.

John 3:16 NKJV

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

Matthew 3:17 NKJV

“And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’ ”

John 1:18 NKJV

“No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bossom of the Father, He has declared Him.”

1 John 4:9-10 NKJV

“In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”

Matthew 17:5 NKJV

“While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”

 

Dear Father,

As we gather and sing about Jesus’ birth, may we truly accept His authority. As we adore Him as an infant, may the reality that He came to take our punishment for our sin burn deep within us. May we embrace the true meaning of the cross. By the power of the Holy Spirit, may we never be happy to let Jesus just be a baby in a manger – may we acknowledge that He is the Son of God, the second person in the trinity.

In Jesus’ name, Amen

 

 

Prayer, Praise & Worship As Seen Through The Tabernacle

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Prayer, Praise & Worship As Seen Through The Tabernacle

The tabernacle was the center of worship to God by the people of Israel while wandering through the desert. It was a tent-like structure that stood within a court enclosed by linen curtains. The tabernacle consisted of three parts: the outer court, the holy place and the holy of holies.

The first part of the tabernacle was the outer court.

The outer court was a place of sacrifice and a place of cleansing. The priest ministered to the people, and prepared themselves to minister to the Lord in the outer court.

Self-examination is critical to our relationship with God. If we are allowing sin to stay in our lives God will not hear our cries.

When we come before God and confess our sins to Him, He will forgive us.

When we ask Him to give us clean hands and a pure heart He will.

When we come to Him with a broken heart He is near.

When we bring to Him the sacrifice of a broken spirit and contrite heart, He will accept it.

Psalm 24:3-4 NKJV

“Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?

Or who may stand in His holy place?

He who has clean hands and a pure heart,

Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol,

Nor sworn deceitfully.”

Job 22:30 NKJV

“He will even deliver one who is not innocent;

Yes, he will be delivered by the purity of your hands.”

Ephesians 1:7 NKJV

“In Him we have redemption through His blood,

the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace”

Psalm 51:17 NKJV

“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,

A broken and a contrite heart –

These, O God, You will not despise.”

Psalm 34:18 NKJV

“The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,

And saves such as have a contrite spirit.”

 

God desires that all people delivered from captivity (sin) would be priests unto Him.

Exodus 19:3-6 NKJV

“And Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountains, saying, ‘Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel: You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles‘ wings and brought you to Myself.

Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine.

And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel.”

Because of disobedience and sin, not all of the people were allowed to become priests that ministered unto Him. God chose the tribe of Levi to minister unto Him. That is why it is so important for you to examine yourself on a continual basis and especially if you want to minister to the Lord.

Deuteronomy 10:8 NKJV

“At that time the Lord separated the tribe of Levi to bear the ark of the covenant of the Lord, to stand before the Lord to minister to Him, and to bless in His name, to this day.”

The second part of the tabernacle was the holy place.

The Holy Place was the first part of the tabernacle that was hidden by a tent. In the holy place the priests ministered unto the Lord by burning a sweet smelling incense. The incense that was burned in the holy place represents praise, worship and prayer rising up to God as a sweet smelling incense.

 

Psalm 141:2 NKJV

“Let my prayer be set before You as incense,

the lifting of my hands as the evening sacrifice.”

As Zacharias was burning incense before God, and receiving the elements on the table of showbread, he was having an intimate relationship with God.

It was during this time that God performed a miracle in his life – God meet Zacharias’ need during his ministry unto God. God can and will do the same thing today. God wants to minister to us just like He did Zacharias in the Holy Place. God wants to meet our needs, but first, we must minister to Him.

Hebrews 13:15 NKJV

“Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.”

We were chosen by God to be a priest. We were chosen to be His own special people. As a priest we are to proclaim His praises. We are to offer up sacrifices of praise.

1 Chronicles 16:29 NKJV

“Give to the Lord the glory due His name;

Bring an offering, and come before Him.

Oh, worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness!”

Psalm 134:2 NKJV

“Lift up your hands in the sanctuary

And bless the Lord.”

Psalm 103:2 NKJV

“Bless the Lord, O my soul; and forget not all His benefits.”

1 Chronicles 16:29 NKJV

“Give thanks to the Lord, the glory due His name; bring an offering, and come before Him. Oh, worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness!”

The third part of the tabernacle was the holy of holies.

The Holy of Holies was the second part of the tabernacle that was hidden by a tent. It was there the very presence of God came to dwell. Once a year the high priest went into this part of the tabernacle on behalf of the people and God communicated with him.

Ezekiel 44:17-18 NKJV

“And it shall be, whenever they enter the gates of the inner court, that they put on linen garments, no wool shall come upon them while they minister within the gates of the inner court or within the house. They shall have linen turbans on their heads and linen trousers on their bodies; they shall not clothe themselves with anything that causes sweat.”

When the priest went in to minister to God, it had to be the way that God had instructed them. The priest could not enter any way he liked. There was a certain way to enter then and now.

Today, God does not communicate with us only one time a year. He communicates with us all the time in our spirit.

At the moment of the death of Jesus, the veil between the holy place and the most holy place was torn into. From that moment on we all have access to the Father through the Son. Each believer became a priest at Calvary.

1 Peter 2:9 NKJV

“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

As a priest we can go before God in prayer on behalf of our needs and the needs of others. When we join with others in prayer our prayers become even stronger.

Ecclesiastes 4:12 NKJV

“Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him.

And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

 

Who Do You Say I Am?

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Who Do You Say I Am?

Matthew 16:13-15 NKJV

“When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, ‘Whodo men say that I, the Son of Man, am?’ So they said, ‘Some say John the Baptist, someElijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’ He said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?”

To truly worship Jesus, we must acknowledge Jesus’ relationship with the Father, the sacrifice He paid and who He is.

One definition of worship is to ascribe value to someone or something. You only value what you acknowledge as valuable. How can a person worship, ascribe value to, Jesus if you do not know who He is? Or what agony He suffered for them?

We must acknowledge Jesus’ relationship with the Father:

Jesus is the Son of God and He is the only way to the Father.

John 3:16 NKJV

““For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

John 14:6 NKJV

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

John 14:9-11 NKJV

“Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not know Me, Phillip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the work. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves.”

John 17:21 NKJV

“That they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; That they also may be one in us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.”

We must acknowledge Jesus’ sacrifice:

Jesus’ entire life centers around sacrifice and pleasing the Father. Jesus’ attention was not on the pain and agonies of the Cross, but on the joy that it would bring the Father. Jesus focused on the reward instead of the suffering.

Hebrews 12:2 NKJV

“looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

We must acknowledge Jesus for who He is:

To truly reverence Jesus you must know who He is. Reverence is a feeling of deep respect mixed with wonder, awe, and love. When you reverence someone you will have great respect for them. We must worship Jesus for who He is.

Matthew 16:13-19 NKJV

“When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?” So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

Dear Father,

By the power of the Holy Spirit, cause me to always remember, and be thankful for, the sacrifice that Jesus, Your Son, paid for me. All the agony He suffered was for me personally. Through Jesus’ sacrifice I have access to You and my relationship with You has been restored. I have been given a new and everlasting life. May I follow Jesus’ example and focus on the reward instead of the suffering in all situations and circumstances. May I grow in reverence for You, O Lord.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Admitting, Believing, Confessing, and Forsaking

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Admitting, Believing, Confessing, and Forsaking

BIBLE THOUGHTSEveryone that experiences true salvation will be received by God. True repentance is being sorry for doing wrong (for going against God), not being sorry that you were caught doing wrong. If we are truly sorry that we have sinned and we go to Jesus for forgiveness, we will receive forgiveness.

Admit

Everyone who wants to receive salvation must admit that they have sinned.

Romans 3:23 NKJV

“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

Believe

Everyone who wants to receive salvation must believe in Jesus Christ.

Acts 16:31 NKJV

“So they said, ‘Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.’ ”

* They must believe that Jesus is the Son of God (the deity of Jesus Christ).

* They must believe that Jesus came to this earth through a virgin birth.

* They must believe that Jesus lived a sinless life while here on earth.

* They must believe that Jesus died on the cross, and that His blood was shed for the remission of their sins.

* They must believe that Jesus rose from the grave, that He is alive in heaven and that He will return to earth again.

Confess

Everyone who wants to receive salvation must confess their sin to God. Today we have direct access to God through Jesus, therefore we do not have to confess our sin to a priest or another person. We can go directly to God with our confession.

1 John 1:9 NKJV

”If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Forsake

Everyone who wants true salvation must forsake their sin. Once you have experienced the full knowledge of Christ and His salvation, do not turn back. Knowledge of Christ without obedience to Christ can be very dangerous. It is not enough to know that we are to turn from evil, we must do it. Don’t return to your old (sinful) ways.

2 Peter 2:20-22 NKJV

“For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter end is worse for them than the beginning,

For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them. But it has happened to them according to the true proverb: ‘A dog returns to his own vomit,’ and, ‘a sow, having washed, to her wallowing in the mire.”

God takes the commitment that we make when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior very serious. Once we become part of the kingdom of God we are not to look back, or to return to our old ways.

Luke 9:62 NKJV

“But Jesus said to him, ‘No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”

You Are What You See

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You Are What You See

BIBLE THOUGHTS 

What are you allowing to enter into your mind and heart through your eyes?

Luke 11:34-36 NKJV

“The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness. Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness.
If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, the whole body will be full of light, as when the bright shining of a lamp gives you light.”

You must be careful what you set before your eyes. In other words, you must be very careful what you allow into your mind and heart through your eyes.

Psalm 101:3-4 NKJV

“I will set nothing wicked before my eyes; I hate the work of those who fall away; It shall not cling to me. A perverse heart shall depart from me; I will not know wickedness.”

Like David, we must hate what God hates and love what God loves. One definition of hate is to have a strong distaste for something. God does not like or approve of wickedness (evil), nor should we.

A person cannot be intimate with God and intimate with wickedness at the same time. If we want a close relationship with God we must have a clean heart.

Dear Father,

By the power of the Holy Spirit help me to set nothing wicked before my eyes. Keep me from a perverse heart and remove all wickedness from me. Cause me to hate what You hate and to love what You love. May I not embrace evil or evil people. Help me to be full of light and to have no part in darkness.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.