Posted by: dhkrause | October 20, 2014

Prophetic Gospel Message in Genesis Genealogy

For God So Loved the World

The meanings of the Hebrew names in the genealogy from Adam to Noah contain a prophetic gospel message:

Man is appointed mortal sorrow; (but) the Blessed God shall come down teaching (that) His death shall bring (the) despairing rest.

(Chuck Missler, ‘Hidden Treasures in the Biblical Text’, p. 17)

Genesis Geneology

Bible reference: Genesis 5, 9:29

The Holy Spirit inspired these names over the span of a thousand years forming a prophetic statement about the Son of God whose death would bring salvation to a lost and dying world.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

Posted by: dhkrause | October 13, 2014

Living for God’s Glory

A central message of the Bible is that God’s people are called to live for His glory. In Psalm 72, Solomon praises the name of the coming Messiah, and of the God of Israel, and prays that the whole earth will be filled with His glory.

Psalm 72 (NKJV)
17 His name shall endure forever;
His name shall continue as long as the sun.
And men shall be blessed in Him;
All nations shall call Him blessed.
18 Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel,
Who only does wondrous things!
19 And blessed be His glorious name forever!
And let the whole earth be filled with His glory.
Amen and Amen.

David prophesies in Psalm 86 that all nations will come and worship, and glorify God’s name, and personally vows to glorify His name forever.

Psalm 86
All nations whom You have made
Shall come and worship before You, O Lord,
And shall glorify Your name.
10 For You are great, and do wondrous things;
You alone are God.
11 Teach me Your way, O Lord;
I will walk in Your truth;
Unite my heart to fear Your name.
12 I will praise You, O Lord my God, with all my heart,
And I will glorify Your name forevermore.

In Psalm 96, upon returning the Ark to Jerusalem David exhorts people of all nations to give glory to the Lord and worship Him in the beauty of holiness.

Psalm 96
Give to the Lord, O families of the peoples,
Give to the Lord glory and strength.
Give to the Lord the glory due His name;
Bring an offering, and come into His courts.
Oh, worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness!
Tremble before Him, all the earth.

John 1 declares that the Word became flesh, revealing His glory:

John 1
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. …14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

Jesus, the living Word of God, was focused upon giving glory to the Father in his life, death and resurrection, as seen in his prayer in John 17.

John 17
Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do. And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.

In John 12, nearing the hour of his death on the cross, Jesus prays in the garden of Gethsemane, “Father, glorify Your name.”

John 12
27 “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.
28 Father, glorify Your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, saying, “I have both glorified it and will glorify it again.”

In John 14 and 15, Jesus encourages the disciples to pray to the Father in His name, promising that the Father will be glorified in the Son by answered prayers, and by the revelation of His love.

John 14
12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.

John 15
If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples. “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

Jesus exhorts believers to live in a way that inspires others to glorify God.

Matthew 5
14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

In Matthew 6, Jesus teaches the disciples how to pray for God’s glory.

Matthew 6
In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
13 And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power
And the glory forever. Amen.

We live for God’s glory by doing all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

Colossians 3:17
And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, http://compellinglove.net/, 10/12/2014

Posted by: dhkrause | September 29, 2014

Resurrection Life in Christ

The Bible records that Jesus was crucified, buried, and rose again after three days, fulfilling many Messianic prophecies including the “sign of Jonah”. Jesus (Yeshua) explains in Matthew 12 that the account of Jonah being three days in the belly of a fish and then emerging alive is a prophetic picture of his death and resurrection:

Matthew 12 (NKJV)
38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from You.”
39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. 40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

In 1 Corinthians 5:20, Paul (Shaul) describes Christ’s resurrection as “the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep”, recalling the promise of Daniel 12:2, “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, some to shame and everlasting contempt.” Paul describes the promise of resurrection life this way in Romans 8:11:

But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.

In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul compares the first man of the earth, Adam, with Christ, the second Man, who is the Lord from heaven, and makes this promise in verse 49: “as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.”

1 Corinthians 15 (NKJV)
20 But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. 23 But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ’s at His coming.

47 The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven. 48 As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly. 49 And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.

Paul goes on to teach in 2 Corinthians 5:17 that even here and now, believers have new life in Christ:

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

In Revelation 1:17-18, the risen Lord announces himself to John, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. 18 I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen.” In Revelation 21, John sees a new heaven and a new earth, and the Lord declares in verse 6, “I am the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.”

Revelation 21 (NKJV)
Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.”
And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts. He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.”

This revelation of the Son of God who is also the Son of Man, the Beginning and the End, who makes all things new, is prophetically pictured in the first sixteen letters of the Hebrew Bible, as explained by Doctor Yonathan Fass in his book, “Creation’s Heartbeat”.

Genesis 1 (NKJV)
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

בראשית ברא אלהים את השמים ואת הארץ׃

Bereisheet bara Elohim et hashamayim ve’et ha’aretz

The first four words (16 letters) in the Hebrew Bible contain shorter words within them. For instance, the word, בר (bar) meaning “son” occurs within both the first and second words. (Note: Hebrew is read from right to left.) Taken with the following letters, one finds the phrases, son of Seth (the third son of Adam and Eve), and son of God.

The same two consonants, בר , also are used in forming the verb “bara”, meaning “create”. The repetition of these letters carries a suggestion of a new creation. Finally, the fourth word, את (et), is composed of the first and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet, Alef and Tav, and has a prophetic sense of “the beginning and the end”.

In John 11:25-26, just before raising Lazarus from the dead, Jesus declares, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.”

Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 4 that He who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us up, and the eternal glory we will have with Christ will outweigh any troubles we may encounter in this life:

2 Corinthians 4 (NKJV)
13 And since we have the same spirit of faith, … 14 knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you. … 16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. 17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, http://compellinglove.net/, 9/28/14

Posted by: dhkrause | September 24, 2014

Can You See God?

A teacher was using the scientific method to try to teach a 5th grade class about evolution and the nonexistence of God. She asked Tommy if he could see the tree outside. Tommy says yes. She goes on asking him if he can see things like the grass, the flowers, and the sky. Then she asks if he could see God. He answers “No” and the teacher says, “That’s my point. We can’t see God because he isn’t there. He doesn’t exist.”

A girl in the class asked if she could ask the boy some questions and the teacher agreed. So the girl asks Tommy the same questions: Can you see the sky, the tree, etc. And then she asks him, ”Do you see the teacher?” Tommy says Yes. “Can you see the teacher’s brain?” Tommy says No, and the girl replies, “Then according to what we were taught today in school, she must not have one!”

Posted by: dhkrause | September 14, 2014

The True Shepherd and His Sheep

In David’s most famous Psalm, he describes the many ways the Lord is a shepherd to him, providing for his needs, giving rest and restoration, wisdom to walk in His ways, freedom from fear, and the knowledge of His presence. His rod protects the sheep, and applies discipline if needed; his staff draws them away from harm. By the anointing and provision of the Lord they overcome their enemies. Goodness, mercy and life everlasting in His presence – these are His promises to those who follow Him.

Psalm 23 (NKJV)
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil; for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

Psalm 100 reminds us to give thanks and praise to the Lord our God. It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture.

Psalm 100
Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands!
Serve the Lord with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing.
Know that the Lord, He is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.

Isaiah 53 describes the atoning sacrifice of the Messiah-Savior who was yet to come. He has carried our sorrows and taken our judgment upon himself, as a shepherd giving his life for his sheep who have gone astray.

Isaiah 53
Surely He has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned, every one, to his own way;
And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Peter describes how Jesus (Yeshua) fulfilled the promise of Isaiah 53, bringing salvation and healing by his sacrifice for all who believe in him.

1 Peter 2
24 who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed. 25 For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

In John 10, Jesus describes his work as the shepherd of his people. He is both the shepherd and the gate of the sheepfold. He speaks, and his sheep hear his voice. He leads them and brings them into abundant life in God’s presence. As the good shepherd, he has laid down his life for us, and he is risen from the dead just as he said. F. F. Bruce writes, “If he was to impart resurrection life to others, he must receive resurrection life himself, and to receive resurrection life he must pass through death.” He did this for all who believe in him, as John 3:16 declares. We are eternally secure in him; he and the Father are one.

John 10
Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. … 14 I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. 15 As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep.
17 “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. 18 No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.”
27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. 30 I and My Father are one.”

In John 17, Jesus prays that the union of life and love he shares with the Father would be shared by every believer, and that the glory the Father has given to the Son would shine through us, so that the world may know that the Father has sent His Son and loves us as He loves Him.

John 17
20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 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. 22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 23 I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, http://compellinglove.net/, 9/14/2014

Posted by: dhkrause | September 1, 2014

All Things Working Together for Good

In John 9, Jesus responds to the disciples questioning about why a man was born blind:

John 9 (NKJV)
Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.

The blind man may have had this question himself from time to time over the years. Strikingly, Jesus states that the man was born blind so that the works of God could be revealed in him.

While Jesus was physically in the world, God purposed to reveal he was the light of the world through signs such as this, as Jesus then explains:

John 9
I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

Sometimes God takes what we consider to be evil and makes it work together for good. Paul declares this principle in Romans 8:28:

Romans 8
28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

This theme is particularly well illustrated in the life of Jacob’s son Joseph who was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. Years later when he was co-regent with the Pharaoh in Egypt, his repentant brothers came to him after their father’s death to plead for mercy. Joseph famously responds:

Genesis 50
19 Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God?
20 But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.

The way God sets things up for His purpose to be fulfilled is also clearly seen in the book of Esther. When Mordecai urges her to intercede for her Jewish people by going before the king unasked at the risk of her life, he declares, “… Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14) She consents, declaring, “… if I perish, I perish”, and the rest is history. (Esther 4:16)

The man born blind may not have known he was called by God for this special purpose, but later looking back at his healing by Jesus he most likely understood. God’s purposes override our own because our lives on earth are meant to glorify Him, not us. Like this blind man healed by Jesus, we too have the joy and privilege of living for God’s glory and letting His light shine through us. (See Matthew 5:14-16)

Upon being healed, this man realized Jesus was sent from God. When asked, he answers, “He is a prophet.” He testifies repeatedly of what he had just experienced: “He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” Still being pressed by his questioners, he exposes the error in their perspective:

John 9
30 The man answered and said to them, “Why, this is a marvelous thing, that you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes! 31 Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him. 32 Since the world began it has been unheard of that anyone opened the eyes of one who was born blind. 33 If this Man were not from God, He could do nothing.”

Jesus finds the man to let him know exactly who he is:

35 Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when He had found him, He said to him, “Do you believe in the Son of God?”
36 He answered and said, “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?”
37 And Jesus said to him, “You have both seen Him and it is He who is talking with you.”
38 Then he said, “Lord, I believe!” And he worshiped Him.

Jesus explains that those who are spiritually blind but think they see need to recognize that they are spiritually blind in order to be healed:

John 9
39 And Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.”
40 Then some of the Pharisees who were with Him heard these words, and said to Him, “Are we blind also?”
41 Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you say, ‘We see.’ Therefore your sin remains.

Several of the Beatitudes in Jesus’ “Sermon on the Mount” likewise point to the blessedness of knowing we are poor in spirit without Him, of hungering and thirsting for righteousness, and having a pure heart focused on seeing God:

Matthew 5
“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
     for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
     for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
     for they shall see God.

What Jesus desired the healed man, and all others to see is that true fruitfulness can only come through being connected to Him, as he later explains:

John 15:5
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.

Jesus invites all who sense the need for the help that only He can give, to come to him to learn and find rest for our souls:

Matthew 11
28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, http://compellinglove.net/, 8/31/14

Posted by: dhkrause | August 18, 2014

Light of the World

God is the source of all light, both inner and outer. By His word, light broke forth upon the waters covering the earth, and the cycle of day and night began. On the sixth day, He created man in His own image – male and female – with the light of self consciousness.

Genesis 1 (NKJV)
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.

26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.

All things were created through the eternal Word of God. John’s gospel reveals the Word of God to be His Son, eternally dwelling with the Father. Light and life flow from the living Word of God who became incarnate as Jesus Christ. He declared in John 8:12, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

John 1
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world.

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

In Numbers 6:24-26, God gave Moses this priestly blessing for Aaron and his sons to speak over the children of Israel:  “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.” His face shone upon David, who declares in Psalm 27, “The Lord is my light and my salvation”. He sought not just the help of the Lord, but His face, to behold the beauty of the Lord in His temple.

Psalm 27
The Lord is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the strength of my life;
Of whom shall I be afraid?

One thing I have desired of the Lord,
That will I seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the Lord
All the days of my life,
To behold the beauty of the Lord,
And to inquire in His temple.

Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice!
Have mercy also upon me, and answer me.
When You said, “Seek My face,”
My heart said to You, “Your face, Lord, I will seek.”

David’s son Solomon writes prophetically of the Messiah in Proverbs 16:15, “In the light of the king’s face is life, and his favor is like a cloud of the latter rain.” Paul (Shaul), with a heart for God like David, declares in 2 Corinthians 4:6, “For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”

Isaiah 60 describes a coming time when the glory of the Lord will be seen upon His people Israel, and the nations will come to her light. The Lord will be to her an everlasting light, and her glory.

Isaiah 60
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.

19 “The sun shall no longer be your light by day,
Nor for brightness shall the moon give light to you;
But the Lord will be to you an everlasting light,
And your God your glory.

John describes the glory of the New Jerusalem in a very similar way:

Revelation 21
22 But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light. 24 And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it. 25 Its gates shall not be shut at all by day (there shall be no night there).

In Ephesians 5, Paul urges believers to walk as children of light through Jesus Christ, who came into the world for this very purpose:

Ephesians 5
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord.

14 Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.”

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, http://compellinglove.net/

Posted by: dhkrause | August 4, 2014

Grand Canyon Salvations

From Russ Miller, Creation, Evolution & Science Ministries
Quarterly Newsletter, August, 2014, http://www.CreationMinistries.org

God provides the harvest
On one of our recent Grand Canyon Rim & Raft tours, during which we play many of Russ’ DVDs and reveal original creation rock, judgment layers and more, our bus driver and his wife began the trip by telling us they were “spiritual.”  At the end of the tour, over the bus’s PA system, they announced they now know Jesus is Who they have been seeking.  God is good.

You Can’t Top God
A raft guide on a recent Rim & Raft tour was very combative, arguing as I shared how the biblical view of the Canyon bested the secular misinterpretations of geology.  Well, two weeks later he was again one of our guides and I expected more of his opposition.  Instead he explained the Canyon from a biblical perspective and said he was a Christian!  (I was blown away!)

Posted by: dhkrause | August 4, 2014

The Fountain of Living Waters

God promises to be the fountain of living waters for all who come to Him. Jeremiah 17 speaks of God’s life-giving spirit abiding with those whose hope and trust are in Him.

Jeremiah 17 (NKJV)
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,
And whose hope is the Lord.
For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters,
Which spreads out its roots by the river,
And will not fear when heat comes;
But its leaf will be green,
And will not be anxious in the year of drought,
Nor will cease from yielding fruit.

 In Jeremiah 2, God warns that trusting in false gods causes people to be cut off from Him, “the fountain of living waters”.

Jeremiah 2 (NKJV)
13 “For My people have committed two evils:
They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters,
And hewn themselves cisterns—broken cisterns that can hold no water.

In Psalm 91, God promises to deliver and honor those who set their love on Him, giving them long life and showing them His salvation:

Psalm 91(NKJV)
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

14 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him on high, because he has known My name.
15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”

The word for salvation in Hebrew is “Yeshua”. Jesus (Yeshua) promises that those who come to him will receive “living water”, that will become in them “a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life”.

John 4 (NKJV)
A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.

Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.

10 Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”

11 The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? 12 Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?”

13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”

In John 6:16-21, Jesus’ disciples were frightened when they saw him walking on the stormy sea and drawing near the boat. “But He said to them, “It is I; do not be afraid.” Then they willingly received Him into the boat, and immediately the boat was at the land where they were going.” Psalm 77 contains a parallel prophetic description:

Psalm 77 (NKJV)
I cried out to God with my voice—
To God with my voice;
And He gave ear to me.

19 Your way was in the sea,
Your path in the great waters,
And Your footsteps were not known.
20 You led Your people like a flock
By the hand of Moses and Aaron.

In John 7, Jesus reveals the key to knowing if what he teaches is true: if anyone wills to do God’s will, he will know that what Jesus speaks is true.

John 7 (NKJV)
16 Jesus answered them and said, “My doctrine is not Mine, but His who sent Me. 17 If anyone wills to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, whether it is from God or whether I speak on My own authority. 18 He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who seeks the glory of the One who sent Him is true, and no unrighteousness is in Him.

Jesus promises to give the Holy Spirit to those who come to him and drink. “Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” The Spirit was given with power after Jesus rose from the dead and ascended to the Father.

John 7 (NKJV)
37 On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. 38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” 39 But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

Revelation 7 describes a great multitude of believers that will come out of the great tribulation and stand before the throne of God. Jesus, the Lamb of God, will shepherd them and lead them to “living fountains of waters”.

Revelation 7 (NKJV)
14 … So he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them. 16 They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any heat; 17 for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”

Jesus Christ, the Son of God, ever continues to be the fountain of living waters, leading and empowering by his Spirit all who come to Him.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, http://compellinglove.net/

Posted by: dhkrause | July 21, 2014

The Bread of Life

Jesus bread of life

In John 6:48, Jesus declares, “I am the Bread of Life.” He continues in verse 51, “I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.”

How does one eat of this bread of life? This is the subject of Jesus’ teaching to the crowd who came to Capernaum seeking him after the miracle of feeding the five thousand men and their families. Jesus begins by scolding them for being motivated by their desire for another free lunch, rather than by desiring to know the meaning of this sign:

John 6 (NKJV)
25 And when they found Him on the other side of the sea, they said to Him, “Rabbi, when did You come here?”
26 Jesus answered them and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. 27 Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.”

Some then began changing their focus to seek for the “food which endures to everlasting life”. So they asked Jesus what kind of works did they need to do to obtain this food. They did not yet grasp that the “work” God was looking for was that they believe in the Son whom He has sent:

28 Then they said to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?”
29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”

The people then requested that Jesus help them believe by performing a sign such as sending bread from heaven, similar to the manna people ate during their forty years in the desert:

30 Therefore they said to Him, “What sign will You perform then, that we may see it and believe You? What work will You do? 31 Our fathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’” [Exodus 16:4; Nehemiah 9:15; Psalm 78:24]

Jesus draws a contrast between the manna their fathers ate in the wilderness, and the true bread from heaven:

32 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

Some of the listeners then believed that Jesus could give this food, but they had yet to realize that Jesus himself is both the giver and the gift. Jesus then describes the relationship between the Father and the Son of God, and declares it is the Father’s will that “everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life”:

34 Then they said to Him, “Lord, give us this bread always.”
35 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. 40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”

Those who knew Jesus as the “son of Joseph” and also knew his mother wondered how he could claim to have come down from heaven. Jesus again describes the relationship of the Father and Son of God, and the crucial need for faith declaring, “he who believes in Me has everlasting life.” Then he astounds them further by declaring, “I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.” Some of them misunderstood him to be speaking of cannibalism:

41 The Jews then complained about Him, because He said, “I am the bread which came down from heaven.” 42 And they said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that He says, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”
43 Jesus therefore answered and said to them, “Do not murmur among yourselves. 44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. 45 It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught by God.’ [Isaiah 54:13] Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me. 46 Not that anyone has seen the Father, except He who is from God; He has seen the Father. 47 Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50 This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. 51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.”
52 The Jews therefore quarreled among themselves, saying, “How can this Man give us His flesh to eat?”

Jesus again declares that “unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you.” He is speaking of spiritual nourishment, as he clarifies by saying, “As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me”:

53 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. 56 He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. 57 As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. 58 This is the bread which came down from heaven—not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live forever. …   63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.

F. F. Bruce writes, “The true sustenance and refreshment of our spiritual life are to be found only in him who died that we might live.” [The Gospel & Epistles of John, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, MI, 1983, p. 160]

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, http://compellinglove.net/, 7/20/14

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