“It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.”
God wants us to have hope while we wait. He desires us to have faith that He is working behind the scenes. Hope develops Faith. Faith develops patience.
“For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.”
Patience is not a fun quality to develop. We’ve all heard the saying, “Don’t pray for patience.” But we have not, because we ask not. Many times in the growing of our patience, we only hope for the waiting to be over. Instead, God wants us to quietly wait for Him, and while we wait in silence we should exercise our faith that He will come through. Hope is simply faith marked with a waiting period.
When the Lord makes us wait. He has a purpose. He may delay something for His glory & our good.
“And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him.”
Are you loudly waiting for the Lord? Exercising only your jaws will not get you very far. God gave us two ears so that we could listen twice as much as we speak. We can’t hear as well while we are talking. Let your words be few today.
Are you quietly waiting for the Lord? Exercising your faith on your knees allows the Lord to lift you up in His timing. Humble yourself before Him today, and quietly wait with the faith that He does all things well.
I Chronicles 13-14 | Colossians 3 | Proverbs 1
“The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.”
Remember playing hide & seek? Maybe you’ve had the chance to play it recently with a cute little kid who asked and you couldn’t say no when they wanted you to play. One person waits and counts to ten while the other player(s) go and hide. Then the counter has the task of seeking out where the others are hiding. God doesn’t hide from us, but we can all learn from this game. We must stop and wait while God is working in our lives, and begin to seek Him as we walk through this dark world shining our Light as we go. While we wait, we must seek God through prayer and reading His Word.
Why should we wait & seek God?
Because the Lord is Our Portion.
“The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot.”
“My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.”
Because the Lord is Our Hope.
“I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.”
“Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.”
“Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.”
I Chronicles 16:11
“Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually.”
If we want to have strength in our walk, we must wait on the Lord; and while we wait, we must seek Him.
Decide today to quit running. Stop. Then begin to Wait & Seek Him.
I Chronicles 11-12 | Colossians 2 | Psalm 150
“And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause.”
Again. The first word of Chapter 2 of the Book of Job tells us the scene. Much like the first chapter, Satan comes to present himself to the Lord once again. While he is there, the Lord asks him, again, if he has considered His servant Job. Times of testing and trial are never singular. We see this in the Book of James as we read “count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations”. The text does not read temptation, but rather “temptations”. It also does not say if ye fall, but rather “when ye fall”.
Times of testing are inevitable. The rain falls upon the just and the unjust. We are repeatedly told throughout Scripture that we will suffer persecution and trials.
Our text today has been called the key verse of the Book of Job because it summarizes his integrity despite his circumstance. Throughout all of his trials, Job held fast to his integrity despite what those around him had to say about his situation.
Satan was given permission to destroy Job’s children, servants, livestock, herdsmen, home and even his health. God allowed Satan to persecute Job, all the while knowing the bright future ahead. The Lord sees what we don’t see. Job only saw his current situation; yet he did not waver in his integrity. He continued to trust God despite his circumstances. Even Job’s wife thought he should give up because of the attacks.
“Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die.”
How did Job respond? He rebuked her negativity. Job understood that both blessings and trials come when we walk with the Lord. Despite his wife's opinion and advice, Job stood strong without sin in his trial.
May we mirror the integrity of Job when we endure trials. When we can’t see anything but the storm, God holds us in the palm of His hand. He will never leave us nor forsake us, and because of that we can have integrity. Hold fast to your Saviour when the winds of life assail.
“God forbid that I should justify you: till I die I will not remove mine integrity from me. My righteousness I hold fast, and will not let it go: my heart shall not reproach me so long as I live.”
I Chronicles 9-10 | Colossians 1 | Psalm 149
“And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?”
Job. The mature and upright man from the land of Uz, who feared God and departed from evil. He had a reputation with men as the greatest man in all of the east. But he also had a reputation with God. He was His servant. The Lord said there was none like him in all of the earth.
Job had such a relationship with the Lord that he was chosen to be the example encased within the canon of Scripture of the permission from the Lord that Satan needs before he touches one of God’s children.
Notice how Satan answers the Lord’s question to him:
“Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on ever side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.”
Satan is aware of the hedge of protection the Lord has placed around His children. Be thankful for the hedge that surrounds you today. If you are a child of God, nothing can happen to you unless God allows it.
When the Lord allows difficult circumstances to come into our lives it is an opportunity for us to be an example to those around us, and shine our Light. Like Job, we can use the situation to turn our weeping into worship.
“Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped…the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.”
Job could have easily quit. He could have gotten mad at God for all that he lost. Instead, Job chose to fall on his knees and worship his Lord.
Examine your walk with the Lord today. Could you be considered upright and one that feareth God? Rejoice when you are considered worthy to be a partaker of Christ’s sufferings.
I Peter 4:13
“But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.”
I Chronicles 7-8 | Philippians 4 | Psalm 148
“And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.”
Cain and Abel were the first two sons of Adam & Eve. They were the first children to be conceived and born into this world. And as brothers often are, they were competitive with each other. Both wanted to bring a sacrifice unto the Lord.
Cain was a man who tilled and prepared the ground to bare crops. He was proud of his work, and chose to use his work within his offering.
Abel worked in the fields keeping watch over his flock of sheep. He also chose to use his work in his offering unto the Lord.
The Accepted Sacrifice – Genesis 4:4b
“…And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:”
Abel’s offering was different because his involved the shedding of blood. It was the blood that was accepted. For without the shedding of blood there is no remission. He not only chose to slay one of his flock, but it was a “firstling”. Abel brought the very best thing he had in order to give it back to the Lord. He had faith that the Lord would provide, and gave the Lord his best because He felt the Lord was worthy of nothing less. Abel was confident in the blood’s atonement, which speaks of Christ’s atoning blood for us.
The Rejected Sacrifice – Genesis 4:5
“But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.”
Cain’s sacrifice was from the work of his hands. He was dependent upon what good he had done and his own ability; therefore the Lord did not have respect for his offering. Cain was confident in himself and his works, which speaks of a works salvation. It is not by works of righteousness that we have done, but through the precious blood of Jesus Christ that we find salvation. Because Cain’s sacrifice did not include the blood, the Lord was not pleased. He has no respect for any other means of salvation other than the blood of His Son.
Which brother do we relate to today? Which sacrifice do we depend on?
Nothing but the Blood of Jesus!
I Chronicles 5-6 | Philippians 3 | Psalm 147
“And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.”
Andrew scoffed at the resources they had…the lad’s lunch. “What are they among so many.” Oftentimes we look at what we have to offer the Lord, and our resources seem daunting in comparison to the need of the task at hand. We, like Andrew, tend to doubt the Lord’s power and what is possible when all that we have is given to Him.
When we submit our lives to Him, He often begins to break us. Just like the five barley loaves He broke apart so that they could be used and given to the great company of people, God often breaks us so that we can be used of Him. We are unusable until we are broken by our Lord.
Christ gave the pieces of bread to the disciples so that they could then disperse them to the multitude. Much like God gives the men of God in our lives the messages we need, and then they deliver God’s message to us. Once the people had their fill to eat, Christ commanded the disciples to gather up what was left.
“When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.”
The disciples picked up every piece of bread that was leftover. Miraculously there was twelve baskets full. One for each disciple. Each of them had in their hands a basket full of food that was in itself more than they started with. Not only did 5,000 men eat, an undisclosed amount of women and children, but also the disciples had food for themselves and their families. God had given them the fragments to serve as a witness and reminder that with God nothing shall be impossible.
God always has a purpose for breaking us. He must break us in order to empty our vessels so that the Potter can begin to mold us into His image, and fill us with His Spirit.
What fragments do you have leftover? If you could gather them all up, they are sure to be even more than what you had when you gave the Lord the little you started with.
Those fragments of your life now stand as a witness and reminder of God’s power. We are nothing without Him, but when we surrender our lives to Him we are sure to find that He has done exceeding abundantly above all that we originally asked or thought.
Be thankful for your fragments.
I Chronicles 3-4 | Philippians 2 | Psalm 146
“I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.”
When we take grace out of salvation, or mix grace with works, it is “another gospel: Which is not another”. Salvation apart from the grace of Christ’s sacrifice, or adding to the grace of His substitutionary death, is not the Gospel at all.
“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
Peter understood that there was only One Way, and that not only those who he was preaching to, but he as well can only be saved through Jesus Christ alone.
The same Truth still applies today. Regardless of religious or denominational affiliation, there is only One Way to Heaven.
“Any faith that rests short of the Cross is a faith that will land you short of Heaven…Morality may keep you out of jail, but it takes the blood of Jesus Christ to keep you out of hell…If you do not find salvation in Christ, you will never find it elsewhere.” Charles Spurgeon
“If we are not changed by grace, we are not saved by grace.” A.W. Tozer
“The only people who want to change the Gospel are those who are unchanged by it.” Leonard Ravenhill
I Chronicles 1-2 | Philippians 1 | Psalm 145
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.”
Throughout our study over the past several days on the Word of God, we have focused on several different aspects of the Truth of God’s Word. Today, we will take a different look at the Word Itself. Within the Scriptures about the Word of God we can learn more about our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
We find here in the first five verses of the Gospel of John that Jesus is The Word. Not only was He with God, He was God and He is God. “He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.” They denied Him as God, and they rejected Him as their Messiah and Saviour.
He was present at creation in the very Words that God the Father said as He spoke this world into existence. All things were made by The Word, there was nothing made without Him. Including us.
We find life within The Word. When God breathed into the dust of the ground and man became a living soul, He gave us life through The Word. Then when Adam and Eve fell in sin, Jesus Christ was the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world. He provided us the means of eternal life by willingly offering Himself on the Cross of Calvary for our sin.
The Word still shines Light today through the darkness, and yet the darkness still doesn’t comprehend the Truth. Instead, this dark world continues to push out the Light of the Son and the Light of the Scripture.
We have the Light within us, and can hold the Light in our hands. Shine the Light today in you and allow It to shine through you.
II Kings 23-25 | Ephesians 6 | Psalm 144
“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
When the circumstances of life get us down, it becomes a struggle to make it through the day. Sometimes it is hard to find the energy to continue to do our routine tasks due to the weight of the burdens upon us. It is in those times that we should stop, and turn to the Word of God for It is quick to bring us the help we need.
The word “quick” in our verse today refers to the act of giving life, or making something alive. Those times when we need revived the Scripture is the Water of Life that we need to help our thirsty souls.
“…the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”
We see several references within today’s verse to the characteristics of a sword. The Sword of the Spirit is “sharper than any twoedged sword” so that It can cut us to our core and correct us when we go astray. The Word of God can pierce through the hardest heart and bring conviction to both the sinner’s heart and the backslidden Christian. Numerous times throughout the canon on Scripture do we see the God’s Word referred to as a sword.
“And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:”
When we put on the whole armour of God, there are many defensive tools, yet only One offensive. The Word of God is the only offensive weapon that we need in order to be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Jesus Christ proved this Truth when Satan came to Him and tempted Him. Each time Satan offered the Lord Jesus something, how did Christ respond? “For it is written…” This should encourage us to fill our hearts and minds with Scripture so that we can fight against the fiery darts of the wicked.
The Living Sword brings life to our weary souls, provides power to continue our work for the Lord, cuts us to the core when we need corrected, heals our wounded hearts, and defeats our enemy’s spiritual attacks.
Take your Sword with you today, and allow the Truths of God’s Word to bring life to your soul.
II Kings 21-22 | Ephesians 5 | Psalm 143
“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”
This familiar verse gives us hope and direction. In this one verse we have a promise that His Word provides both present and future direction.
His Word Is Our Lamp
“a lamp unto my feet”
We can have present direction because His Word is a Lamp that provides just enough brightness to see where to take the next step. We have been given a Lamp that we can hold in our hands to shine in the darkness and allow us to see where to take the next step in our walk with the Lord. He wants us to have the faith to trust Him each step of the way. He doesn’t show us the big picture of His will all at once, but through the Lamp we can develop faith that He will guide us through every step. In order to shine, a Lamp must have oil. The Oil of the Holy Spirit provides us the understanding to discern the Truths of the Scripture.
His Word Is Our Light
“a light unto my path”
His Word shines Light ahead providing direction as to which path to continue to take, or allows us to see that we are heading down the wrong one. The correction that the Word of God brings is seen through the Light. Praise God for those times in our lives that we have been redirected through the Scripture and applied the changes that were needed in order to regain our fellowship with the Lord.
The Light of God’s Word also shines the way on our path from our temporary home to our eternal Home. When we allow the Light of the Scripture to direct our lives we cannot be led astray. The straight and narrow way will lead us Home. When we don’t know which way to turn, the Light of the Word provides understanding.
“The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.”
God has given us exactly what we need. Direction for today, and for tomorrow. He instructs us through each phase and journey of life through His Word, if only we would take the time to read and apply His Truth to our life.
“For the commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life:”
Charles Spurgeon explains our verse today so simply...
“The Word of God is a lamp by night, a light by day, and a delight at all times.”
Delight in both the Lamp & the Light today.
II Kings 19-20 | Ephesians 4 | Psalm 142
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