God’s Gifts to the Faithful - Purity 944
Purity 944 01/18/2023 Purity 944 Podcast
Purity 944 on YouTube:
Today’s photo a large sunflower being bathed by a brilliantly shining sun under blue skies comes to us from TammyLyn Clark who shared this photo along with a bible verse on social media a couple of days ago before the launch of her new blog (https://tammylynask.blogspot.com/) which she created to have her own space where she could archive her previous messages and to share her photography, bible verses, and new messages. 2022 proved to be a busy year for TammyLyn as she will be using 5 W2’s for this year’s taxes as she was moved through a series of 4 different full time jobs and had a part time job. She will be sharing that testimony soon so I’ll let you read all about it.
TammyLyn’s story will undoubtedly demonstrate how God blesses those who are faithful to follow Him although there may be many a dark valley we may be called to walk through when we decide to “come and see” all that the Lord has for us.
The Bible verse that she shared with today’s photo was:
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
While there are many a snarky bible scholar that would point out that this “word” was given to the nation of Israel as they were facing dark days with the Babylonian Exile and that if we try to apply this verse to our lives as Christians we are taking it out of context, I would challenge them by asking:
So God doesn’t have plans for us? God doesn’t have plans to prosper us, to not harm us, or to give us a hope and a future?
Sometimes it seems learned Christians like to be “right” and appear intelligent rather than being encouraging.
As far as I’m concerned the context that we as Christians should most be concerned with when it comes to the word of God is “how can God’s word help me to love Him more and be faithful to follow Him.”
So as far as I’m concerned if Jeremiah 29:11 or any verse to the Bible encourages you to seek the Lord, to trust Him, and to follow Him with the way you live your life, I would say you got “the message” the Lord was sending you.
As much as we want to know the proper context of scripture historically, we should also be concerned with applying God’s word to our lives to empower us.
As Christians, I am sure that God has plans to prosper us, to not harm us, and to give us a hope and a future. Christ said as much to His apostles, which they felt encourage to share with us, in
John 14:1-2 (NKJV) where Jesus said:
1 "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.
2 In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
That sounds like a plan to not harm us and to prosper us to me! That sounds like a hope and a future to me!
But just like a salesman with an amazing offer I would say, that’s not all that God has for us!
The word of God is filled with precious promises and I am sharing a link on the blog to open bible dot info if you want to look some up, https://www.openbible.info/topics/gods_promises) but I would point out that these promises, these gifts from God are for the faithful. So be sure to make Jesus your Lord and Savior and be faithful to follow Him to redeem those promises, to receive God’s gifts for you.
My walk as a Christian has not always been easy. I had some deep valleys to walk through after coming to Christ. I had to overcome all of my ignorance concerning the gospel and walking in the Spirit, which is probably the biggest struggle – renewing your mind. But I also had to emerge from the struggles of broken relationships and addiction too. That was no walk in the park but I received my victory and freedom because I remained faithful to the simple directive to surrender and seek the Lord and His will in all things.
I’m still on that path of Christian Discipleship of course and still have more to learn I am sure but this morning I wanted to point to how the Lord blesses the faithful and I really set you guys up.
I have shared the story before of how God literally brought my wife TammyLyn into my life by directing her path to the Community Freedom Ministry I was doing at my local church back in 2021 because God put it in me to start the mt4christ247 podcast. Through a friend, she heard about the classes I was teaching, listened to the podcast, and then faithfully answered God’s call to travel an hour to start attending the classes in person, where we met, became friends, were engaged, and married on January 1st 2022. I thoroughly believe that my wife, TammyLyn, was the answer to my prayers for a faithful Christian wife. She was and continues to be God’s gift to me for my faithfulness.
I was originally going to call today’s post – “The Box of Love” because on our first anniversary surprised me with a gift that will continue to bless me and humble me for all of 2023. I’m sharing photos of the “Box of Love” that TammyLyn gave me. It is decorated with sweet sentiments about the love of a married couple and inside the box TammyLyn included a message a day, or so, for each day of year of our marriage during 2022. Unbeknownst to me, each day she was putting in a Bible verse, a message, or a photo, into an envelope sealing it with the date and putting it into the box. So for this year I have an envelope to open each day, that will remind me of how much my wife loves me and how truly blessed I am by God who has gifted her to me.
Today’s message from TammyLyn from January 18th 2022 , stated:
“One day someone will walk into your life and get it right where everyone else got it wrong. One day you won't have to wait for a call or a text back. One day you won't be the only one giving your all. One day you'll finally meet someone who wants to help you grow in life. One day you will finally meet someone who isn't afraid to give love another chance. One day you will finally meet someone you can trust with everything. One day you'll have your best friend, your biggest supporter, and your teammate all wrapped up into one person.
Thank you for being my “one person”. I am so grateful I found my one day...”
With notes like that, you can see why I believe that TammyLyn is a gift of God to me!
As much as I am humbled and grateful for TammyLyn’s unbelievably kind words, I would like to point out that the “ONE PERSON” who meets all of these criteria is the Lord God Almighty.
I have and undoubtedly will continue to disappoint my wife from time to time but the Lord is the one who meets all of those criteria perfectly, all the time, and He truly blesses those who are faithful to follow Him.
Before Christ my life was a fruitless search for meaning and satisfaction, but then my one day came. I heard the message of God’s love that saved my soul and put me on a course to know the ONE who would be my best friend, biggest supporter, and teammate all wrapped up in one, the Lord. He will never leave me or forsake me. He has plans to prosper me, to not harm me, and to give me a hope and a future.
And He knew that it was not good for man to be alone, and so the Lord brought TammyLyn into my life to give me someone to love and to walk through life with.
After a meandering path of confusion in 2022, The Lord has blessed TammyLyn with a new job as a special education teacher, that will likely be her career going forward. She was faithful and God had a plan to prosper her.
TammyLyn and I are reasonably intelligent and have some skills and talents but before we both made the decision to faithfully follow the Lord, I think we would both admit that our lives were somewhat of a mess. But after we both individually decided to live by faith, the Lord’s plan to prosper us became clearer and led to our marriage.
So let me encourage you, God has gifts for you. God has plans for you. God has the ultimate hope and future for you that should fill you with joy and peace: eternity with Him.
But let me also encourage and assure you, that if you are faithful in making the daily decision to seek the Lord, to know and love Him more, and to follow where He leads, He will give you the peace that goes beyond all understanding here in the land of the living regardless of circumstance and you may very well see the goodness of the Lord here on earth as He works all thing together for good.
So keep walking and talking with God and see what plans He has for you.
Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.
This morning’s meditation verse is:
Timothy 1:7 (NKJV)
7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
Today’s verse reminds us of the nature of the Spirit that God has given to all those who place their faith in Christ.
When we walk in the Spirit, we pay attention to what we think and how we feel. If we are taking every through captive to the obedience of Christ, we should notice a big difference in terms of what we feel emotionally and what we think about.
A Christian mindset would be one of contentment, gratitude, Biblically based reason, and love.
If you notice fear is not on that list.
God’s love which is shown for us through Christ’s sacrifice, death, and resurrection casts our all fear.
In Christ we have victory over death and sin. So there is nothing to b a afraid of. Death is the worst case scenario for those on earth but if we have Christ, we have eternal life. Nothing to be afraid of there.
As for sin, if we are afraid of making mistakes – we are covered by God’s love there too. Through God’s grace and faith in Christ, we are forgiven for all of our sins, even the ones we haven’t done yet! So we don’t have to fear punishment.
But we also have been given true power over sin, when we abide in Christ and let Him live through us our hearts will be on living in His peace and not violating God’s Law and acting out of the character of our new life in Christ.
God’s love will work in and through us to make all things new.
And even though the world may say that living for God is “crazy”, His word assures us that the spirit that leads us to follow the unseen God is of sound mind.
So do not fear and choose to stop the “insanity” of a secular life by choosing to live by faith in the power of the Holy Spirit.
As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.
Today we continue sharing from A.W. Pink’s “The Sovereignty of God.”
As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase Bonhoeffer’s books for your own private study and to support his work. This resource is available on many websites for less than $20.00.
THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD
By ARTHUR W. PINK
THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD IN SALVATION, continues.
2. The Sovereignty of God the Son in Salvation
For whom did Christ die? It surely does not need arguing that the Father had an express purpose in giving Him to die, or that God the Son had a definite design before Him in laying down His life—“Known unto God are all His works from the beginning of the world” (Acts 15:18). What then was the purpose of the Father and the design of the Son. We answer, Christ died for “God’s elect.”
We are not unmindful of the fact that the limited design in the death of Christ has been the subject of much controversy—what great truth revealed in Scripture has not? Nor do we forget that anything which has to do with the person and work of our blessed Lord requires to be handled with the utmost reverence, and that a “Thus saith the Lord” must be given in support of every assertion we make. Our appeal shall be to the Law and to the Testimony.
For whom did Christ die? Who were the ones He intended to redeem by His blood-shedding? Surely the Lord Jesus had some absolute determination before Him when He went to the Cross. If He had, then it necessarily follows that the extent of that purpose was limited, because an absolute determination of purpose must be effected. If the absolute determination of Christ included all mankind, then all mankind would most certainly be saved. To escape this inevitable conclusion many have affirmed that there was not such absolute determination before Christ, that in His death a merely conditional provision of salvation has been made for all mankind. The refutation of this assertion is found in the promises made by the Father to His Son before He went to the Cross, yea, before He became incarnate. The Old Testament Scriptures represent the Father as promising the Son a certain reward for His sufferings on behalf of sinners. At this stage we shall confine ourselves to one or two statements recorded in the well known fifty-third of Isaiah. There we find God saying, “When Thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed,” that “He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied,” and that God’s righteous Servant “should justify many” (vv. 10 and 11). But here we would pause and ask, How could it be certain that Christ should “see His seed,” and “see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied,” unless the salvation of certain members of the human race had been Divinely decreed, and therefore was sure? How could it be certain that Christ should “justify many,” if no effectual provision was made that any should receive Him as their Lord and Saviour? On the other hand, to insist that the Lord Jesus did expressly purpose the salvation of all mankind is to charge Him with that which no intelligent being should be guilty of, namely, to design that which by virtue of His omniscience He knew would never come to pass. Hence, the only alternative left us is that, so far as the pre-determined purpose of His death is concerned Christ died for the elect only. Summing up in a sentence, which we trust will be intelligible to every reader, we would say, Christ died not merely to make possible the salvation of all mankind, but to make certain the salvation of all that the Father had given to Him. Christ died not simply to render sins pardonable, but “to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself” (Heb. 9:26). As to whose “sin” (i.e., guilt, as in 1 John 1:7, etc.) has been “put away,” Scripture leaves us in no doubt—it was that of the elect, the “world” (John 1:29) of God’s people!
(1) The limited design in the Atonement follows, necessarily, from the eternal choice of the Father of certain ones unto salvation. The Scriptures inform us that before the Lord became incarnate He said, “Lo, I come, to do Thy will O God” (Heb. 10:7), and after He had become incarnate He declared, “For I came down from heaven, not to do Mine own will, but the will of Him that sent Me” (John 6:38). If then God had from the beginning chosen certain ones to salvation, then, because the will of Christ was in perfect accord with the will of the Father, He would not seek to enlarge upon His election. What we have just said is not merely a plausible deduction of our own, but is in strict harmony with the express teaching of the Word. Again and again our Lord referred to those whom the Father had “given” Him, and concerning whom He was particularly exercised. Said He, “All that the Father giveth Me shall come to Me; and him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out.… And this is the Father’s will which hath sent Me, that of all which He hath given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day” (John 6:37, 39). And again, “These words spake Jesus, and lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify Thy Son, that Thy Son also may glorify Thee; As Thou hast given Him power over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as Thou hast given Him.… I have manifested Thy name unto the men which Thou gavest Me out of the world: Thine they were, and Thou gavest them Me; and they have kept Thy Word.… I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which Thou hast given Me; for they are Thine.… Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am; that they may behold My glory, which Thou hast given Me: for Thou lovest Me before the foundation of the world” (John 17:1, 2, 6, 9, 24). Before the foundation of the world the Father predestinated a people to be conformed to the image of His Son, and the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus was in order to the carrying out of the Divine purpose.
Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!
at https://mt4christ247.podbean.com, You can also find it on Apple podcasts
(https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-mt4christ247s-podcast/id1551615154). The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and Audible.com.
These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@MT4Christ247
Email me at email@example.com to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.
My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog (https://tammylynask.blogspot.com/ ), her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock (https://www.facebook.com/groups/529047851449098 ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (https://feed.podbean.com/tammalyn78/feed.xml)
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Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship