Posted by: dhkrause | December 13, 2017

My Jewish Connection

Genesis 22_18

Genesis 22:18
In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”

Yeshua (Jesus) is the ultimate fulfillment of this promise to Abraham.  Prophet, Priest and King, He is the Lion of the tribe of Judah, and the Lamb prophesied by Abraham in Genesis 22:8, “God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering.”  This was a foreshadowing of Yeshua’s declaration in John 3:16, “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.”

In the Incarnation Yeshua (Jesus) was observant of the Law.  This is affirmed consistently in the Gospels, perhaps most notably in Matthew 5:17-18, “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.

Archeology also is increasingly confirming this aspect of Yeshua as shown, for example, in the cover article of the December, 2017 issue of National Geographic, “The Real Jesus – What Archeology Reveals About His Life”.  On page 60, author Kristin Romey includes this quote from a prominent professor, Craig Evans: “Thanks to archaeology, there’s been a big change in thinking – from Jesus the cosmopolitan Hellenist to Jesus the observant Jew.”

While I have not investigated the matter thoroughly, I appear to have some Jewish ancestry on both sides.  My father’s mother’s maiden name was Pasach, the Hebrew word for Passover.  There are many Jewish people with my last name, Krause, or its variant, Kraus.  My mother’s maiden name was Schultz (variant of Schulz), a common German and Jewish-Ashkenazi family name in Northern Germany, per Wikipedia.  Her mother’s maiden name was Cassidy, and I see there are many Jewish people with that name as well.  Some have suggested I have DNA testing done to further research this.  However, my Jewish connection does not depend on genealogy or DNA!

Yeshua (Jesus) is Jewish to the core, and by following Him I have been spiritually adopted into His family!  In his book, “Twelve Gates – Where Do the Nations Enter?”, Messianic Jewish author Boaz Michael explains this further:

“The day is coming when the holy city, the New Jerusalem, will descend, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.  The twelve gates of the city will be open, day and night.  …  Each gate is made of precious stone.  The names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel are inscribed upon the gates, just as they were inscribed on the twelve stones of the high priest’s breast piece.

 “Through which gate will you enter?

 “The Bible teaches that in Jesus, “the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body” with the Jewish people (Ephesians 3:6), and “fellow heirs with Christ” Himself (Romans 8:17).”  …

“If I were a Gentile Christian and someone asked me, “What gate will you enter?”, I would reply, “I will enter through the gate of Judah.  Although I am not from that tribe, my Master is the son of David from the house of Judah.”  Shouldn’t the king’s bride pass through the king’s gate?  Shouldn’t  a man’s servant enter through the same gate as his master?” …

“Our Lord is coming; indeed, he is coming soon!”

(“Twelve Gates – Where Do the Nations Enter?”, by Boaz Michael, First Fruits of Zion, 2012, p. 56-57)

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 12/12/17, https://compellinglove.net/

Posted by: dhkrause | December 10, 2017

My Wife, the First Responder

 

Marla circa 1984

Dad and Kevi, circa 1989

             Marla, circa 1984                                      Dad & Kevi, circa 1988

It amazes me how my wife Marla is able to quickly assess an emergency situation and take exactly the actions needed.  No wonder our eldest son Kevi was drawn to become a paramedic, where these very same instincts are essential to the job.  I remember a particular occasion when they joined together to prevent an accident in progress from getting much worse.

The incident occurred when Kevi was in his early twenties and had been working as a paramedic and volunteer fireman.  Kevi, Marla and I, plus several of his siblings were on a family outing to a park with a barbecue pit, where we were planning to enjoy a lunch together.  One of us had made the mistake of bringing propane fuel in lieu of fuel specifically designed for use with coals.  As Kevi was heating the coals for cooking, he decided to speed things up by pouring about an ounce of propane onto the coals from a Styrofoam cup.

Immediately, the flames followed the vapor trail to his hand and the next moment his shirt was ablaze.  Kevi dropped to the dirt and began rolling to extinguish flames, while the rest of us stood there staring in horror.  All of us, that is, except Marla.  She raced over to him and began swatting his shirt just below the neckline where his rolling was not stopping the flames.  Kevi yelled, “Leave me alone, I know what to do!”  Ignoring his plea, she kept swatting the flames in that area until they were out.

We doused the burned areas with water, and then I drove Kevi to the nearest hospital which was not far away.  The ER nurse who met us razzed him a little when he gave her a quick synopsis of the accident.  She said, “You, a paramedic and fireman, poured propane on a fire?”  They gave him the best treatment they could for his burns which fortunately were minor compared to what they might have been.  In the weeks to come, the last place to heal completely was the spot just below his neckline where the fire had burned the longest.  Kevi was a brave and uncomplaining patient through it all.

We were all grateful  that his burns turned out to be relatively minor, and that his skin healed quickly.  What impressed me most about this incident, apart from the bad judgments that caused it, was the way Marla instantly assessed the situation, saw what was needed, and leapt to do the most needful thing, as one “first responder” to another.

Posted by: dhkrause | December 2, 2017

More Than Conquerors

In Matthew 4, Jesus demonstrates how to win the victory over the devil who seeks to derail our lives in many clever ways.  Jesus stands on the written Word of God in meeting each of the devil’s three temptations.  Later, as the  resurrected Lord, Jesus makes this promise to all who follow in His footsteps to win the victory in their own lives:

Revelation 3:21
To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne,
as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.”

Revelation 3_21

To understand how Jesus used scripture to defeat the devil, it helps to examine the context of each scripture he quoted.

The First Temptation

The devil first appealed to Jesus’ physical need for food after having fasted for forty days and nights.  He cleverly challenged Him to do something that would both prove He is the Son of God, and provide Him with food to eat.

Matthew 4 (NKJV)
1 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry.
Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.”
But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”

Matthew 4_4

In this declaration, Jesus quoted from the following passage:

Deuteronomy 8:3 (NKJV)
So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord.

Application:
God sometimes allows us to experience hunger or some other need that He intends to satisfy in a supernaturally natural way.  The devil likes to step in with an unrighteous alternative, something outside of God’s will.  If we hold faithfully to God’s commands and promises, we will see Him meet our needs “exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think.” (Ephesians 3:20Trust in the Lord with all your heart!”  (Proverbs 3:5)

The Second Temptation

The devil next gave Jesus a mocking challenge, this time cleverly using scripture in an attempt to trap Him into losing face if He refused the dare.

Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him,
If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down.
For it is written: ‘He shall give His angels charge over you,’
and, ‘In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone
.’”

Psalm 91_11

The devil was quoting here from Psalm 91:11-12, which reads in context:

Psalm 91 (NKJV)
Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
12 In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.

The Psalm is promising those who have taken refuge in the Lord, and dwell in Him, that He will protect them, and send His angels to watch over them to keep them safe in all their ways (which are also His ways, because they belong to Him).  The angels will bear them up as they walk, so that they will not even stub their toes against a stone.  (Notice the Psalm does not promise angels will rescue a fool who leaps from a tower to put on a show.)

Jesus ignores the devil’s false use of scripture, giving a rebuttal based on the true use of God’s Word:

Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’”

Jesus was quoting from Deuteronomy 6:

16 “You shall not tempt the Lord your God as you tempted Him in Massah. 17 You shall diligently keep the commandments of the Lord your God, His testimonies, and His statutes which He has commanded you.”

Matthew 4_7

The reference to Massah takes us to Exodus 17, where we find the children of Israel contending with Moses, tempting the Lord to deal harshly with their rebellion.  They were not trusting God to fulfill His promises, and they were almost ready to stone Moses, God’s appointed leader.

Out of compassion, God met their need supernaturally, causing a huge flow of water to come forth where Moses struck the rock, instantly carving a massive well and fountain.  (Interestingly, in recent years archeologists exploring in that area have found a massive stone with a deep vertical crevice that appears to have been formed by tremendous hydraulic force of water erupting from below.)

God spared the people from judgment on this occasion, but He warned them not to tempt Him again as they had in Massah.  In referring to this scripture, Jesus was conveying that jumping off a high pinnacle on a dare would be an act of rebellion such as God had warned His people not to do.

Application:
When we experience thirst or other hardships, God is calling us to keep believing in Him as our Provider, and never turn back.  He answers our faith with supernaturally natural provision, and we will come out of the testing spiritually stronger than ever.  Trust and obey!

The Third Temptation

 Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him,
All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”
10 Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written,
You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’”

Matthew 4_10

Jesus here refers to Deuteronomy 6:13, where God commands His people to worship and serve only Him.  The confrontation ends here, as He sends the devil packing.  The devil had fired his best shots, and Jesus had defeated him, referring each time to the written Word of God.

11 Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.

Application:
The Lord our God is calling His people to be completely committed to Him.  If we are worshiping some other God, or seeking benefits outside of His will, we do not belong to Him.  His passion for us will not be fulfilled until we turn fully to Him, and reciprocate his undying love.  Give it all to Him!

By faithfully following Jesus and standing on God’s Word, we too will be
more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” (Romans 8:37)

We will be overcomers, sitting with Him on His throne.  (Revelation 3:21)

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 12/2/2017, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
http://flickriver.com/photos/daily-bible-verse/tags/cross/
https://weheartit.com/entry/176220430
http://karinforeman.com/psalm-91/psalm-91-11-wscripture/
http://slideplayer.com/slide/8691809/
http://slideplayer.com/slide/7049919/

Posted by: dhkrause | November 19, 2017

The Promise and Power of God’s Love

John 3_16 (2)

God continually draws and invites people to receive the promise of His love, to drink deeply of His living water, and to walk in the power of His Spirit.

Receive the promise of His love for you.

The promise of God’s love for us is seen in His sending of His only Son, Jesus Christ, through whom we have eternal life.  When we receive Him and believe in Him, He lives in us – “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

John 3 (NKJV)
16 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. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

Paul speaks in Colossians 1:26-27 of “the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to His saints… Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

In Jesus’ prayer in John 17, He declares that we receive eternal life by knowing  the one true God and Jesus Christ whom He has sent.

John 17 (NKJV)
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.

Romans 5_5

By faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, we stand in God’s grace, and “the love of God is poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”

Romans 5 (NKJV)
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

John 17 is frequently called “the high priestly prayer of Jesus”.  In verses 1-5, Jesus prays for himself.  Then in verses 6-19, he prays for the disciples.  Starting in verse 20, he prays for all believers – those who would believe in him through the word of his disciples.  In verse 23, he prays that He would be in believers, as the Father is in Him, (I in them, and You in Me), and again in verse 26, that his love may be in us, and that he himself would be in us (that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them).

John 17_26

John 17 (NKJV)
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.

24 “Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me. 26 And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

Jesus Christ, the risen Son of God, invites believers to open the doors of their hearts for an ever closer and more intimate relationship to Him.

Revelation 3 (NKJV)
20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. 21 To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.

John 8_38

Drink deeply of His living water.

Jesus spoke of the Holy Spirit whom He would give, using the image of “living water”.  He invites all who are thirsty to come to Him and drink.

 John 4 (NKJV)
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.”

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.”

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.

Romans 15_13

Walk in the power of His Spirit.

By the power of the Holy Spirit, the God of hope fills us with all joy and peace, and overflowing hope, as we trust in Him.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Rom. 15:13)

Being led by the Spirit of God, we are His sons and daughters, and joint heirs with Christ.

Romans 8 (NKJV)
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.

God has given us a spirit of power, love and a sound mind.  (2 Tim. 1:7)
He pours out His love in our hearts, by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 11/18/2017, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
http://www.godswordimages.com/wallpaper/gentleness/john-3-16/
https://likegoldrefinedagain.wordpress.com/category/memorisation-bible-verses/page/14/
http://www.feedmysheepjerusalem.com/system/files/gallery/
http://bibleversewallpapercreations.blogspot.com/2013/04/
https://missionventureministries.wordpress.com/2016/07/27/what-is-the-meaning-of-hope-in-the-bible-romans-1513/

 

Posted by: dhkrause | November 4, 2017

The Way, the Truth, and the Life

John 14_6

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through Me. – John 14:6 (NKJV)

What does it mean for Jesus to be “the way, the truth and the life”, and how is it that no one comes to the Father except through Him?  The context for this verse is that Jesus has just promised to prepare a place for His followers in His Father’s house, and to bring them there in due time.  They will not need to find the way there, because He Himself is the way!

 John 14 (NKJV)
1 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. 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. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.”

Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?”

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

In this passage, He was also declaring that eternal life comes through Him.  He is the truth, because He reveals the Father: He and the Father are one.

John 14
“If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.”

John 14_9

Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.”

Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 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 works. 11 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 1 helps bring understanding of the statement that the Son of God is “the way, the truth and the life”, and why is it that no one comes to the Father except through Him.  Here we see the Son of God described as being Creator with the Father, and giver of life and light to all men.  He took on flesh to reveal the Father, and to bring grace, truth, and life everlasting to those who receive and follow Him.

John 1 (NKJV)
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.

That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world.

John 1_9

10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of 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.

16 And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.

The events and conversations in John 11 are helpful for understanding the identity of Jesus as the Son of God, and why it is that in the resurrection at the last day, no one will come to the Father except through Him.

John 11 (NKJV)
1Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. It was that Mary who anointed the Lord with fragrant oil and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. Therefore the sisters sent to Him, saying, “Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.”

John 11_25-26

When Jesus heard that, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”

Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So, when He heard that he was sick, He stayed two more days in the place where He was. Then after this He said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.”

17 So when Jesus came, He found that he had already been in the tomb four days. 18 Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles away. 19 And many of the Jews had joined the women around Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother.

20 Now Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met Him, but Mary was sitting in the house. 21 Now Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You.”

23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”

24 Martha said to Him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”

25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. 26 And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

27 She said to Him, “Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.”

38 Then Jesus, again groaning in Himself, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”

Isaiah 61_10

Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.”

40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”

41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. 42 And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.” 43 Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” 44 And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.”

Jesus came to bring eternal life and everlasting joy to God’s people  (John 3:16).  The description in John 14:1-3 parallels that of a Jewish wedding, like the  bridal language in Isaiah 61, describing the coming Messianic kingdom.

Isaiah 61 (NKJV)
10 I will greatly rejoice in the Lord,
My soul shall be joyful in my God;
For He has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
He has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
As a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments,
And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the earth brings forth its bud,
As the garden causes the things that are sown in it to spring forth,
So the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 11/4/2017, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
http://www.tellthelordthankyou.com/blog/2015/1/30/john-146-jesus-is-the-only-highway-to-heaven
https://www.pinterest.com/jborrageiro/12-apostles/
https://thebottomofabottle.wordpress.com/2016/08/23/the-light-john-19/
http://www.crosscards.com/cards/holidays/easter/he-is-risen-john-11-25-26.html
http://brendaboen.blogspot.com/2012/04/isaiah-6110-timeline-cover.html

 

Posted by: dhkrause | October 21, 2017

Overcome Evil with Good

John 1_17

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth
came through Jesus Christ. – John 1:17 (NIV)

God’s truth and grace are alive in His people, as Jesus teaches in John 14, enabling us to overcome evil with good.  He promises to anyone who loves Him and keeps His word, that the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of truth, will dwell in him, and that He and His Father will make Their home in him:

 John 14 (NKJV)
15 “If you love Me, keep My commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.

23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.

We now have the distinct privilege of overcoming evil with good, as 1 John 4:4 declares: “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”

Matthew 5_16

The life of Joseph in the book of Genesis gives a wonderful picture of overcoming evil with good.  There are significant parallels between the mission of Jesus and the life of Joseph.  For example, God planned the suffering of Joseph in advance to save many (Genesis 50:20), and Jesus said, “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 3:16)  Both were tempted but without sin, staying focused on giving glory to God in every circumstance, as Jesus describes in Matthew 5:

Matthew 5 (NKJV)
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 every circumstance, Joseph prospered because the Lord was with him.  His jealous brothers had sold him as a slave to Ishmaelite traders who later sold him in Egypt to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh and captain of the guard.  Even as Potiphar’s slave, everything prospered in his hand.  Seeing this, Potiphar made him the overseer of his house.

Genesis 39 (NKJV)
Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. And Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him down there. The Lord was with Joseph, and he was a successful man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian. And his master saw that the Lord was with him and that the Lord made all he did to prosper in his hand. So Joseph found favor in his sight, and served him. Then he made him overseer of his house, and all that he had he put under his authority. So it was, from the time that he had made him overseer of his house and all that he had, that the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the Lord was on all that he had in the house and in the field. Thus he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand, and he did not know what he had except for the bread which he ate.

Genesis 39_3

Later, Potiphar’s wife falsely accused Joseph of attempting to lie with her, and succeeded in arousing Potiphar’s anger, resulting in Joseph being put into prison.  Yet, once again he prospered because the Lord was with him.

19 So it was, when his master heard the words which his wife spoke to him, saying, “Your servant did to me after this manner,” that his anger was aroused. 20 Then Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners were confined. And he was there in the prison. 21 But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. 22 And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners who were in the prison; whatever they did there, it was his doing. 23 The keeper of the prison did not look into anything that was under Joseph’s authority, because the Lord was with him; and whatever he did, the Lord made it prosper.

One day, Joseph interpreted the dreams of the Pharaoh’s chief butler and chief baker in prison: that the butler would be restored to his position and the chief baker would be executed.  Both of these predictions came true soon afterward.

Two years later, Joseph was brought out of the prison to interpret Pharaoh’s two dreams.  These interpretations predicted that after seven years of great plenty, seven years of severe famine would arise.  Then Joseph advised Pharaoh on what to do, and the king decided to make Joseph his executive ruler over all of Egypt.

 33 “Now therefore, let Pharaoh select a discerning and wise man, and set him over the land of Egypt. 34 Let Pharaoh do this, and let him appoint officers over the land, to collect one-fifth of the produce of the land of Egypt in the seven plentiful years. 35 And let them gather all the food of those good years that are coming, and store up grain under the authority of Pharaoh, and let them keep food in the cities. 36 Then that food shall be as a reserve for the land for the seven years of famine which shall be in the land of Egypt, that the land may not perish during the famine.”

37 So the advice was good in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of all his servants. 38 And Pharaoh said to his servants, “Can we find such a one as this, a man in whom is the Spirit of God?”

39 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Inasmuch as God has shown you all this, there is no one as discerning and wise as you. 40 You shall be over my house, and all my people shall be ruled according to your word; only in regard to the throne will I be greater than you.” 41 And Pharaoh said to Joseph, “See, I have set you over all the land of Egypt.”

Later, in Genesis 50:20, Joseph tells his brothers, “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.

Genesis 50_20

The missionary, Bruce Olson (Bruchko) likewise has a testimony of overcoming evil with good.  He followed the leading of the Holy Spirit to go to the native Columbians  in the jungles of South America.  When he met up with the Indians, one of them suddenly stabbed him in the side with a spear causing him to lose consciousness.  Upon awakening, he found himself in the care of a teenage Indian who had been assigned as his caretaker until he returned  to health.  He prayed asking God, “Did I truly hear you correctly, when You directed me to come here?”  The Lord replied, “Yes, you are doing exactly what I want you to do.”  Much fruit has resulted from his ministry with the Motilone Indians in the Jungles of Columbia beginning in 1961.

Darlene Rose, missionary to New Guinea, experienced the fruit of obeying Jesus’ command to “pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you”.  She prayed for the mean officer over of the woman’s prisoner-of-war camp in New Guinea in the Second World War, and  God answered her prayers by changing his heart.  This commander later saved her life, and after the war went on to preach the gospel over Japanese national radio.

Matthew 5 (NKJV)
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

As His sons and daughters, we have the privilege and power to overcome evil with good, because “greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.”  (1 John 4:4 KJV)  When we do, His light shines through us and our Father in heaven is glorified.  (Matthew 5:16)

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 10/21/2017, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
https://newcreeations.org/john-117/
http://praying-olatubosun.blogspot.com/2016/04/matthew-516-let-your-light-shine-in-me.html
https://www.heraldandbanner.com/hb/lesson-highlight-the-lord-made-all-to-prosper/
http://clifflukaye.co.ke/daily-bible-verses/2017-08-08-genesis-50-20.html

Posted by: dhkrause | October 8, 2017

Eternal Life

Psalm 16_11

Psalm 16 portrays David’s close relationship with God, and his faith in God’s promise of eternal life.  He also prophetically points to the Resurrection of God’s Holy One, the Messiah to come.

Psalm 16 (NKJV)
I will bless the Lord who has given me counsel;
My heart also instructs me in the night seasons.
I have set the Lord always before me;
Because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved.

 Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices;
My flesh also will rest in hope.
10 For You will not leave my soul in Sheol,
Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.
11 You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

In His prayer in John 17, Jesus describes the Son of God as the giver of eternal life.  He further declares, “this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

John 17 (NKJV)
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.

John 17_3

To understand these statements, it is helpful to carefully read and understand the prologue to John’s gospel (John 1:1-18).  He begins by declaring the eternal existence of the Son of God (portrayed in this passage as “the Word”) and His relationship to the Father, with whom He shares deity:

John 1 (NKJV)
The Eternal Word
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.

The eternal Word, the Son of God, is declared to be the Creator, through whom all things were made:

All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.

The Son of God, the eternal Word, is the source of all life, and the source of the light of consciousness in every person:

In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.

John 1_4

When this light of life shines in the darkness of this world, people do not readily understand and comprehend it.

And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

When Jesus begins His ministry, John the Immerser bears anointed witness of Him:

 John’s Witness: The True Light
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.

Jesus Christ, the incarnate Word, came into the world that He had made, and people did not know Him.  He came to His own, a nation specially called to be God’s people, and most did not receive Him:

10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him.

John 1_12

But those who did receive Him, those who believed in His name, were born from above by the Spirit, as children of God:

12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

In summary, the Word became flesh (incarnate) and dwelt among His people.  Those who beheld His glory saw Him to be the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth:

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.

When Jesus begins His ministry, John points his own followers to Him saying that although “He comes after me”, “He was before me.”  John meant that though Jesus was born after him, and  began His public ministry after him, Jesus was before him – eternally existing as the Son of God:

15 John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me.’”

Jesus was the fullness of God in human flesh, and those who followed Him received of His fullness, and grace upon grace.

16 And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.

John 1_16

God gave the law through Moses, and through Jesus Christ He gave grace and truth to fulfill the law.

17 For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

Though none of us has seen God, the Son of God who is continually with the Father, has declared and revealed Him.

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

1 John 5 declares that He came so that we may know the true and living God: “Him who is true” and His Son Jesus Christ.  “This is the true God and eternal life.

1 John 5 (NKJV)
20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 10/7/2017, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
https://dailyverses.net/psalms/16/11
https://www.onlythebible.com/Backgrounds/John-17-3
https://images.knowing-jesus.com/i/john-1-4-life-in-him-green
http://www.clifflukaye.co.ke/daily-bible-verses/2017-06-27-john-1-12.html
http://pictures.agodman.com/john-1-16-for-of-his-fullness-we-have-all-received-and-grace-upon-grace-rm/

Posted by: dhkrause | September 24, 2017

Unstoppable Faith

Faith Unlocks Victory

According to 1 John 5:4, faith is the victory that overcomes the world.  This is the inspiration for the grand old hymn with that title:

Faith is the Victory
(Song Lyrics, verse 4 and refrain):

To him that overcomes the foe,
White raiment shall be giv’n.
Before the angels he shall know
His name confessed in Heav’n.
Then onward from the hill of light,
Our hearts with love aflame,
We’ll vanquish all the hosts of night,
In Jesus’ conqu’ring Name.

Faith is the victory! Faith is the victory!
O glorious victory, that overcomes the world.

Faith is the victory that overcomes the world!  Here is the context for this thought provoking declaration:

1 John 5 (NASB)
Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

Born Again

To better understand what believing in Jesus Christ has to do with being “born again”, we turn to the beginning of John’s gospel:

John 1 (NKJV)
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.

10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

We learn more about what it means to be “born again” in John chapter 3, just before the famous verse, John 3:16: 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 3_16

John 3 (NKJV)
There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”

Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”

Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

Believing in Jesus and receiving Him is much more than a mere mental assent that He is the Christ, the Savior sent from God.  It means putting your whole trust in Him to keep every promise, and walking with Him in loving obedience.  It is said that the longest distance in the universe is the distance between the head and the heart!Bruce OlsonThis was illustrated by an interaction missionary Bruce Olson (Bruchko) had in Columbia with a young Indian lad named Bobby who was helping him during his recovery from some injuries.  All the people in the village slept in hammocks, so he had to do the same.  However, to keep from falling out while sleeping, he kept one leg out of the hammock with his foot on the ground.  This was causing him to wake up with serious aches and pains.

Bobby advised him, “Bruchko, you need to have complete trust in the hammock, and put both feet in!”  He summoned up the courage and tried it, and it worked!  Later Bobby told him he wanted to come to Jesus but was afraid to trust Him completely with his life.  Bruchko replied, “Bobby, you just need to jump in with both feet!”  The young man returned later and declared, “Bruchko, I get it!  I’m trusting Jesus with my whole heart!”

Complete trust is shown by acting on your faith, as in the story about an acrobat preparing to ride a bike over a tightrope strung between two cliffs. He turned and asked a young male onlooker, “Do you believe I can do this?”  The boy answered, “Yes I do!”  The man replied, “Great, hop on!”

In His earthly ministry, Jesus focused on reaching “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matthew 15:24).  However, he had great compassion for gentiles who came to Him in faith.  In the following incident, the woman asking for help believed not only that He could help her, but that He would. So even when Jesus seemed to be denying her request, she took heart and persisted with unstoppable faith!

Great is Thy Faith

Matthew 15 (NKJV)
A Gentile Shows Her Faith
21 Then Jesus went out from there and departed to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 And behold, a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon-possessed.”

23 But He answered her not a word.

 And His disciples came and urged Him, saying, “Send her away, for she cries out after us.”

24 But He answered and said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

25 Then she came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, help me!”

26 But He answered and said, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.”

27 And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.”

28 Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, https://compellinglove.net/, 9/23/2017

Photo credits:
http://www.breakthroughforyou.com/faith-is-our-victory/
http://tellmethatstory.com/born-again
http://larrytherubbishman.com/john316.htm
https://christianlifemissions.org/causes/bruce-olson-ministries/
https://www.pinterest.com/Dunkeleben/matthew-1527-yet-the-dogs-eat-of-the-crumbs-which-/

Posted by: dhkrause | September 9, 2017

The True Shepherd

God loves and guides His people just as a true shepherd loves and guides his sheep.  As with sheep, the members of His flock learn to know His voice and follow Him.  God also raises up leaders to shepherd His people with love and humility, completely  dedicated to their well being.  Members of local congregations follow both the lead of righteous shepherds, and of the “Chief Shepherd” who is Jesus Christ.

The first mention of God as “the Shepherd” is in Jacob’s last words to his sons. Speaking of Joseph he declares, “But his bow remained steady, his strong arms stayed limber, because of the hand of the Mighty One of Jacob, because of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel” (Genesis 49:24 NIV).

Genesis 49

Four centuries later, God raised up Moses to be a shepherd over Israel, leading them out of Egypt and preparing them to enter the Promised Land.  After forty years, God led Moses to anoint Joshua as the next shepherd over Israel:

Numbers 27 (NKJV)
15 Then Moses spoke to the Lord, saying: 16 “Let the Lord, the God of the spirits of all flesh, set a man over the congregation, 17 who may go out before them and go in before them, who may lead them out and bring them in, that the congregation of the Lord may not be like sheep which have no shepherd.”

18 And the Lord said to Moses: “Take Joshua the son of Nun with you, a man in whom is the Spirit, and lay your hand on him; 19 set him before Eleazar the priest and before all the congregation, and inaugurate him in their sight. 20 And you shall give some of your authority to him, that all the congregation of the children of Israel may be obedient.

Psalm 23_1

David describes his close walk with the Lord as his Shepherd, exemplifying the relationship that God desires to have with each of His people.

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.

The Lord also made David a shepherd over Israel.  The Lord told Nathan the prophet, “Now therefore, thus shall you say to My servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts: “I took you from the sheepfold, from following the sheep, to be ruler over My people, over Israel.” (2 Samuel 7:8) 

Psalm 78_70

Asaph describes how God took David “from the sheepfoldsto shepherd  Jacob His people”.

Psalm 78 (NKJV)
70 He also chose David His servant,
And took him from the sheepfolds;
71 From following the ewes that had young He brought him,
To shepherd Jacob His people,
And Israel His inheritance.
72 So he shepherded them according to the integrity of his heart,
And guided them by the skillfulness of his hands.

Even as David was shepherding the nation of Israel, he prayed that the Lord Himself would shepherd them and “bear them up forever”.  He declared, “The Lord is my strength and my shield” and also, “The Lord is their strength”.  His desire was for each person to know the Lord personally as their Shepherd.

Psalm 28 (NKJV)
Blessed be the Lord,
Because He has heard the voice of my supplications!
The Lord is my strength and my shield;
My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped;
Therefore my heart greatly rejoices,
And with my song I will praise Him.
The Lord is their strength,
And He is the saving refuge of His anointed.
Save Your people,
And bless Your inheritance;
Shepherd them also,
And bear them up forever.

1 Peter 5_4

1 Peter 5 describes true shepherds of God’s people: overseers who are willing and eager to serve, “being examples to the flock; and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.”

1 Peter 5 (NKJV)
The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed: Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock; and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.

I am the Good Shepherd

In John 10, Jesus describes His own mission as the good shepherd who gives his life for the sheep, and He also predicts his resurrection.  He also says, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.” (v. 27-28)

John 10 (NKJV)
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. 16 And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.
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.”

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 9/9/2017, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
http://pilgrimwatch.com/2015/01/
https://brokenbelievers.com/2016/09/05/psalm-23-understood/
https://allenbible.org/podcast/2015/10/5/david-a-life-worth-studying-a-god-worth-knowing-ps-7870-72
https://www.versaday.com/Months/10/1030.aspx
https://www.slideshare.net/SammieGSmith/11-november-17-2013-john-101-42-jesus-the-true-shepherd

Posted by: dhkrause | August 26, 2017

Repentance and Grace

Great peace have those who love Your law,
And nothing causes them to stumble.”  (Psalm 119:165)

We can obey God’s law without stumbling, with His help!

Jude 1 24Jude, the brother of Jesus, writes:

Jude 1 (NKJV)
24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling,
And to present you faultless
Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,
25 To God our Savior,
Who alone is wise,
Be glory and majesty,
Dominion and power,
Both now and forever.  Amen.

Jesus Christ gave Himself as an atoning sacrifice for our salvation, which we receive by repentance, faith and ongoing obedience to God’s commands.  The first step is to turn around and give oneself to Him, confessing and repenting of sins, and committing oneself to follow Him.  God promises to respond with grace, forgiveness and cleansing:

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9) 

1 John 1_7 (2)

Thus begins a victorious ongoing walk with God in light,  in fellowship with Him and with one another:

5This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. (1 John 1:5-7) 

True repentance is necessary for the blotting out of our sins.  Peter, after healing the lame man at the Gate Beautiful, exhorted the people:

Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out.
(Acts 3:19)

Jesus’ parable of the lost son illustrates how repentance is the key leading to grace and forgiveness.  Spiritually, this son was dead.  After he came to his senses, repented and returned home, he found grace and forgiveness from his father.  His joyous father declared, “this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found”.  This is a picture of how repentance leads to grace.

Luke 15
The Parable of the Lost Son
11 Then He said: “A certain man had two sons. 12 And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the portion of goods that falls to me.’ So he divided to them his livelihood. 13 And not many days after, the younger son gathered all together, journeyed to a far country, and there wasted his possessions with prodigal living. 14 But when he had spent all, there arose a severe famine in that land, and he began to be in want. 15 Then he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country, and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 16 And he would gladly have filled his stomach with the pods that the swine ate, and no one gave him anything.

Luke 15 24

17 “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! 18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, 19 and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants.”’

20 “And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. 21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.’

 22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. 23 And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; 24 for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ And they began to be merry.

David found grace and forgiveness after he repented and confessed his sins.

Psalm 51 (NKJV)
Have mercy upon me, O God,
According to Your lovingkindness;
According to the multitude of Your tender mercies,
Blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
And cleanse me from my sin.
For I acknowledge my transgressions,
And my sin is always before me.

Psalm 51 9 10

Hide Your face from my sins,
And blot out all my iniquities.

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from Your presence,
And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors Your ways,
And sinners shall be converted to You.

Grace is costly, as Jesus shows in the parables of the Treasure Hidden in a Field and the Pearl of Great Price.  “Selling  all that one has” is a picture of being sold out to God,  living fully for Him.

Treasure Hidden in a Field

Matthew 13
The Parable of the Hidden Treasure
44 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.

Pearl of Great Value

The Parable of the Pearl of Great Price
45 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, 46 who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.

Jesus, our Redeemer and Lord, comes with grace and forgiveness to those who renounce their sins, and keep obeying to win the kingdom of heaven:

 “The Redeemer will come to Zion,
And to those who turn from transgression in Jacob,”
Says the Lord.  (Isaiah 59:20)

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 8/26/2017 https://compellinglove.net/

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