Posted by: dhkrause | August 18, 2019

The Joy of the Lord

Nehemiah 8_10 (4)

True and lasting joy comes from walking with the true and living God. In Paul’s description of the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22, he lists joy second, right after love: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness”.  Lasting joy is from God, and the joy of the Lord is your strength, as Nehemiah 8:10 declares:

Nehemiah 8:10
Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

Abiding in God’s presence brings fullness of joy, as David describes:

Psalm 16 (NKJV)
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.

Psalm 5_11

Those who put their trust in God, love Him and obey Him will rejoice in His goodness.  He will bless them with favor, and surround them as with a shield:

Psalm 5 (NKJV)
11 But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You;
Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them;
Let those also who love Your name be joyful in You.
12 For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous;
With favor You will surround him as with a shield
.

As we walk in God’s light and truth, He becomes our exceeding joy.

Psalm 43 (NKJV)
Oh, send out Your light and Your truth!
Let them lead me;
Let them bring me to Your holy hill
And to Your tabernacle.
Then I will go to the altar of God,
To God my exceeding joy
;
And on the harp I will praise You,
O God, my God.

Psalm 51_12

The joy of the Lord is lost when a person willfully sins against God.  The only remedy is to sincerely repent, and ask God to restore the joy of your salvation, as David did in Psalm 51:

Psalm 51 (NKJV)
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.

Luke 2 describes the birth of Jesus Christ, the long awaited Savior that had been prophesied.  The angel announcing the birth of Jesus to the shepherds in the field told them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.

Luke 2
Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. 10 Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.

Luke 2_10

11 For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:
14 “Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

Jesus urged His followers to abide in His love.  If we do, His joy will remain in us and our joy will be full.

John 15
Love and Joy Perfected
“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.

11 These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”

Jesus Christ, the captain of our salvation, suffered and died to bring “many sons to glory”, through His death and resurrection.  This was the “joy set before Him” for which He endured the cross.

Hebrews 12_2(2)

Hebrews 2
10 For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

Hebrews 12 (NKJV)
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Paul says in Philippians 2:5, “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus”.  Jesus put the will of His Father first, the eternal life of each of us second, and Himself last.  He said 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.”  If you put Jesus first, others second and yourself last, you will have true and lasting Joy. It may even be contagious, affecting all nature around you!

Isaiah 55 (NKJV)
12 “For you shall go out with joy,
And be led out with peace;
The mountains and the hills
Shall break forth into singing before you,
And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, https://compellinglove.net/, 8/18/2019

Photo credits:
(1) https://pilgrimtraveler.com/for-the-joy-of-the-lord-is-your-strength/
(2) https://www.christianwallpapersfree.com/2014/01/sing-for-joy.html
(3) https://thejoyfulchristianministry.com/tag/salvation/ (Includes excellent teaching)
(4) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m_XxLWeQneg
(5) https://blog.peacebewithu.com/where-is-your-focus/ (Includes excellent teaching)

Posted by: dhkrause | August 4, 2019

The Kingdom of God

Matthew 6_33 (2)

The phrases, “Kingdom of God” and “Kingdom of Heaven” are used synonymously in the New Testament, occurring about 100 times.  In some passages the phrase refers to Christ’s millennial reign on the earth, or His eternal reign in the new heaven and new earth.  In other passages it refers to God’s reigning in our lives here and now through the Holy Spirit.  Jesus taught that above all else we are to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.”

Matthew 6 (NKJV)
25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Matthew 6_10

In the prayer Jesus taught to the disciples, the phrase “Your kingdom come” is looking forward to the God’s coming kingdom here on earth, as well as  praying for God’s complete rulership in the believer’s life.

Matthew 6 (NKJV)
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.

Jesus taught that one must be born of the Spirit to see kingdom of God.

John 3 (NKJV)
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.

John 3_3

The Knowing-Jesus.com website comments on this passage:

Nicodemus could only relate to our physical birth – our natural birth where when a human baby is born through the action, will and work of man. But the new birth is not something that can be implemented by the action, will or work of man. The new birth is a supernatural, spiritual act, that is performed by the Holy Spirit, within the heart of a man or woman, the moment that they put their trust in Jesus Christ.(https://dailyverse.knowing-jesus.com/john-3-3)

Teacher Mary Fairchild writes:

The Kingdom of God is the realm where Jesus Christ reigns as King and God’s authority is supreme. This Kingdom exists here and now (in part) in the lives and hearts of the redeemed, as well as in perfection and fullness in the future.(https://www.learnreligions.com/what-is-the-kingdom-of-god-701988)

At every moment, we have the choice to be abiding in His kingdom or outside of it.  That is why Paul enjoins, “Pray without ceasing.”

1 Thessalonians 5 (NKJV)
16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

John 15_4 (2)

Jesus teaches that if we abide in Him, we will be fruitful for God’s kingdom.

John 15 (NKJV)
1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.

Abiding with Christ means walking in the Spirit and not fulfilling the lusts of the flesh.  Paul contrasts the works of the flesh with the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5.

Galatians 5 (NKJV)
16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Galatians 5_25

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

Francis L. Harris comments on this verse:

Let God speak to you through His Word, The Holy Bible. After being born of the Spirit, we must walk in the Spirit, that is, yield ourselves to God to be led of the Spirit. If you allow the Holy Spirit to guide you, you will avoid the old ways of the flesh, and pursue holiness in the fear of God, “speaking to yourselves in Psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the LORD”, Ephesians 5:19. “Rejoice in the LORD always: and again I say, Rejoice.” Philippians 4:4. This is walking in the Spirit.
(https://versaday.com/Months/12/1214.aspx)

Walking in the Spirit means daily becoming more like Jesus.  As we abide in the hope of His coming, we will purify ourselves, just as He is pure.

1 John 3 (NKJV)
Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, https://compellinglove.net/, 8/4/2019

Photo credits:
(1) https://www.bibleversesof.faith/2019/03/matthew-6-33.html
(2) https://twitter.com/sprec61551/status/970149469055430656
(3) https://dailyverse.knowing-jesus.com/john-3-3
(4) https://www.yhwh.today/2018/08/john-154.html
(5) https://versaday.com/Months/12/1214.aspx

Posted by: dhkrause | July 21, 2019

Joy in the Fellowship of God

Psalm 63_3 (2)

Our greatest fellowship is with God.  He desires for His love and joy to be perfected in us as we walk with Him.  David experienced this close fellowship with God when he was in the wilderness of Judah fleeing from king Saul who out of jealousy sought to take his life.  He prays in Psalm 63:3, “Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you!” 

Psalm 63 (NLT)
O God, you are my God;
I earnestly search for you.
My soul thirsts for you;
my whole body longs for you
in this parched and weary land
where there is no water.
I have seen you in your sanctuary
and gazed upon your power and glory.
Your unfailing love is better than life itself;
how I praise you!
I will praise you as long as I live,
lifting up my hands to you in prayer.
You satisfy me more than the richest feast.
I will praise you with songs of joy.
I lie awake thinking of you,
meditating on you through the night.
Because you are my helper,
I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings.
I cling to you;
    your strong right hand holds me securely.

Psalm 16_11 (3)

David’s steadfast hope and trust in God brings to mind the testimony of Job who declared, “For I know that my Redeemer lives, and He shall stand at last on the earth.” (Job 19:25 NKJV)  Like Job, David longed to meet the Redeemer who would one day stand upon the earth.  He refers to Him in Psalm 16:10 as “Your Holy One” who would not see corruption.  He prays in Psalm 16:11, “In Your presence is fullness of joy.”

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
.

The hopes and expectations of Job and David for their coming Savior are fulfilled in Jesus Christ who declared, “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_16 (7)

The revelation of God’s love that comes with receiving and following Jesus leads one to declare like David, “Your love is better than life!”  His abiding love is more precious than life itself.  He is the light of life, as declared in John 1:4, “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.”  

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

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 declares 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.”  A close walk with Jesus is a walk in light and love.  At the Last Supper, after washing the disciples’ feet, he declares in John 13:34-35, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

In John 15, Jesus continues to teach about His love and joy being perfected in those who follow Him:

John 15_9

John 15 (NKJV)
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.
11 
These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another.

Jesus prayed in John 17 that His followers would behold His glory and abide in the love that He shared with the Father before the creation of the world.

John 17 (NKJV)
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.”

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 7/21/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
(1) https://www.theaweandwanderco.com/shop
(2) https://manna.amazingfacts .org/amazingfacts/website/amazingfacts/images/scripture-pictures/psalm-16-11.jpg
(3) https://www.bibleverseimages.com/john-3-16.htm
(4) https://revwhitehous .com/2018/02/21/revolution-verse-of-the-day-02-21-18/

 

 

Posted by: dhkrause | July 7, 2019

Faith More Precious Than Gold

Job 19_25-27

Faith is a gift from God more precious than gold.  Job exemplified this truth when he explained to his friends that though he did not see God in the midst of his hard circumstances, he knew God saw him.  He then declares, “When He has tested me,
I shall come forth as gold.” (Job 23:10)

Job 23 (NKJV)
“Look, I go forward, but He is not there,
And backward, but I cannot perceive Him;
When He works on the left hand, I cannot behold Him;
When He turns to the right hand, I cannot see Him.
10 But He knows the way that I take;
When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold
.

In chapter 19, Job declares, “I know that my Redeemer lives”, and then expresses his faith in a bodily resurrection when he would meet his Redeemer face to face.  He yearned for that great day.

Job 19 (NKJV)
25 For I know that my Redeemer lives,
And He shall stand at last on the earth
;
26 And after my skin is destroyed, this I know,
That in my flesh I shall see God,
27 Whom I shall see for myself,
And my eyes shall behold, and not another.
How my heart yearns within me!

1 Peter 1_7

https://thoughts-about-god.com/blog/katherine-kehler_pure-gold/
“Father, purify our hearts. Make us wholly Yours.
May our lives reflect Your radiance wherever we go. Amen.”
(Katherine Kehler)

Peter describes how the genuineness of one’s faith is much more precious than gold:

1 Peter 1:7 (NKJV)
that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,

Faith in Jesus Christ is a precious gift from God, as 2 Peter 1 describes.  Through faith we receive the promise of eternal life, and the power to walk with God here and now.

2 Peter 1_1-2

2 Peter 1 (NKJV)
Simon Peter, a bondservant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

2 Peter 1_2

Peter goes on to describe qualities of character to be added to our faith for fruitful growth in our walk with God.

2 Peter 1 (NKJV)
But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.

10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; 11 for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

2 Timothy 4_7

Paul, like Job, fought the good fight, finished the race, and kept the faith.

2 Timothy 4 (NKJV)
For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.

Hebrews 11 describes the assurance of faith, the foundation of faith, and the importance of faith in God’s eyes.

Hebrews 11 (NKJV)
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.
By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

By grace through faith we receive the gift of eternal life.

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

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 7/6/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
(1) http://angiesthatsthat.blogspot.com/2017/05/
(2) https://thoughts-about-god.com/blog/katherine-kehler_pure-gold/
(3) https://images.knowing-jesus.com/i/2-peter-1-1-like-precious-faith-yellow
(4) http://www.untilsheflies.com/?p=1526
(5) https://jorieswallofword.wordpress.com/tag/2-timothy-47-niv/

Posted by: dhkrause | June 17, 2019

Put on the Armor of Light

Romans 13_11

https://hightimetoawake.com/rom-13-verse-11/

“It is high time to awake out of sleep”, “cast off the works of darkness” and “put on the armor of light,”  “the Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 13:11-14), “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27).

Romans 13
11 And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. 13 Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. 14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.

The Holy Spirit sends red light signals to us when we are about to step out of our armor of light.  To ignore those signals is like not obeying traffic signals when driving, as a  blogger on the “Partners in Hope” website writes:

Psalm 119:1-3, 35 (NLT)
Joyful are people of integrity, who follow the instructions of the Lord. Joyful are those who obey his laws and search for him with all their hearts. They do not compromise with evil, and they walk only in his paths … Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found.

Romans 13_12

“A driver who ignores traffic signals is “an accident looking for a place to happen.” …  The Scriptures too have some “red lights” that should make us stop and consider our lives as Christians. They are the prohibitions against behaviors that are detrimental to our walk with the Lord and our growth as Christians. Some “red lights” include thoughts such as envy, pride, hatred, lust, irreverence, and selfishness while others have to do with outward behaviors such as sexual immorality, abuse and addictions.

“When the Holy Spirit alerts us to the presence of “red light” thoughts and behaviors in our lives, we should immediately hit the brakes. We don’t always see the surrounding circumstances that require the red light in order for everyone to be safe, including ourselves.  God knows.  God cares and God prescribes boundaries and safety lights for the best of reasons.  We would do well to pay attention and follow the signal.”

http://pihtoday.blogspot.com/2013/04/thursday-april-4-2013-following-signal-1.html

In 1966 I wrote the following poem expressing the aspiration of Christians to walk with God continuously:

High Time
Is twenty-four too many hours to give a day to You?
Is seven days too many days to give each week to You?
Is fifty-two too many weeks to give per year to You?
No, all my time is just enough to give my life to You.

The only way to walk with God continuously is to put on the armor of light, which is to put on the Lord Jesus Christ  (Romans 13:12,14).   In Romans 7, Paul describes how without this armor he fails to do what he wills to do, because of the law of sin and death that is at work in him.  He has no rule over his own spirit, and the result is as described in Proverbs 25:28, “Whoever has no rule over his own spirit Is like a city broken down, without walls.”

John 15_4

Romans 7 (NKJV)
19 For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. 20 Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. 21 I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. 22 For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man.

23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!

So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.

Finally in Romans 8 Paul gives the key to being delivered from this “wretched” condition.  Putting on the armor of light, we are able to “not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” 

Romans 8 (NKJV)
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

Colossians 1_27

In Romans 12, Paul continues the theme of setting one’s mind on the things above, and living according to the Spirit.  He exhorts, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

Romans 12 (NKJV)
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Worship leader Buddy James in a sermon at New Life Church Novato on June 16, 2019 summarized faith leading to wholeness through surrender: “Embrace grace by faith.  Step into wholeness.  Step into surrender.”

Paul speaks again of this transformative change in Galatians 2:20:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

Put on the Lord Jesus Christ who is our armor of light. (Romans 13:12,14)  The Holy Spirit is faithful to send us signals to hit the brakes when needed to keep our armor on, guiding us into all truth (John 16:13).  Truly, the Spirit’s law of life in Christ Jesus has made us free from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2).  We are in Him and He is in us, as Jesus teaches in John 15:4, and prays in John 17:21-23, “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 6/19/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
(1) https://hightimetoawake.com/rom-13-verse-11/
(2) http://pihtoday.blogspot.com/2013/04/thursday-april-4-2013-following-signal-1.html
(3) https://biblia.com/bible/esv/John%2015.4
(4) https://matttullos.com/tag/colossians-127/

Posted by: dhkrause | June 9, 2019

The Light of Life

Psalm 36_9 (2)

Eyesight is a wonderful gift from God through which we can appreciate His glory in Creation.  In Psalm 36:9, David prays, “For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light.”

Psalm 36 (NKJV)
A Psalm of David the servant of the Lord.
How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God!
Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings.
They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house,
And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures.
For with You is the fountain of life;
In Your light we see light.

John’s gospel teaches that the Son of God was with the Father before the creation of the world.  He came into the world so that we may personally receive and walk in the light of life.

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.

John 1_4 (2)

In John 8:12 and again in John 9:5, Jesus declared, “I am the light of the world”.

John 8_12 (4)

Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who
follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” (John 8:12)

As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”  (John 9:5)

 In John 9, Jesus heals a man born blind to demonstrate He is indeed the light of the world.  The healed man receives both physical and spiritual sight.

John 8_12, 9_5

John 9 (NKJV)
A Man Born Blind Receives Sight
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. 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.”

When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing.

Therefore the neighbors and those who previously had seen that he was blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?”

Some said, “This is he.” Others said, “He is like him.”

He said, “I am he.

10 Therefore they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?”

11 He answered and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’ So I went and washed, and I received sight.”

12 Then they said to him, “Where is He?”

He said, “I do not know.”

13 They brought him who formerly was blind to the Pharisees. 14 Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes.

John 9_25 (2)

15 Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, “He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.”

16 Therefore some of the Pharisees said, “This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.”

Others said, “How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among them.

17 They said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him because He opened your eyes?”

He said, “He is a prophet.”

18 But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind and received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight. 19 And they asked them, saying, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?”

20 His parents answered them and said, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; 21 but by what means he now sees we do not know, or who opened his eyes we do not know. He is of age; ask him. He will speak for himself.”

22 His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that He was Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. 23 Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”

24 So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.”

25 He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.”

26 Then they said to him again, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?”

27 He answered them, “I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become His disciples?”

28 Then they reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples. 29 We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from.”

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.”

34 They answered and said to him, “You were completely born in sins, and are you teaching us?” And they cast him out.

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.

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.”

Jesus’ detractors were spiritually blind and did not know it.  Yet spiritual sight is far more important than physical sight, especially as it pertains to knowing Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who said in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.” 

John 14_6 (3)

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 6/9/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
(1) https://dlw-walkinfaith.tumblr.com/post/97291539839/psalm-369
(2) https://ukmidcopts.org/readings/2016/12/03/
(3) https://www.hearthymn.com/i-am-the-light-of-the-world-john-8-12.html
(4) http://janieseltzer.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/I-am-the-light-of-the-world.png
(5) https://agentsoflight.org/i-was-blind-but-now-i-see/
(6) https://wiirocku.tumblr.com/post/140710347308/john-146-nkjv-jesus-said-to-him-i-am-the

 

 

Posted by: dhkrause | May 28, 2019

A Heavenly Inheritance

1 Peter 1_3 (2)

Peter’s first epistle teaches about our heavenly inheritance as believers, and our pilgrimage in getting there.  Those placing their trust in Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord have a living hope through His resurrection from the dead, to a heavenly inheritance that will not fade away.  As we await the fulfillment of this hope, we are “kept by the power of God through faith”.

1 Peter 1 (NKJV)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the deadto an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for youwho are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

Minister Debra Aiken writes, “Jesus Christ is coming again with grace for his people and being assured of this guaranteed hope we have in Him we can find hope and confidence even in suffering.  Every believer, (child of God) through faith in Jesus Christ is born a second time by the Holy Spirit of God; therefore, hope lives in us.

The gifts that we received from our new birth in Christ are (1) grace and mercy (2) a living hope and (3) an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for us who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.”

(http://www.tellthelordthankyou.com/blog/2018/9/27/1-peter-13-it-was-grace-and-mercy)

1 Peter 1_8-9

We have the living hope of eternal life in the presence of God’s love and glory.  Our hope, combined with faith in Christ’s words of promise, causes us to rejoice with “joy inexpressible and full of glory.”  Though we have not seen Him, we love Him and believe in Him, awaiting the full salvation of our souls, including body, mind and spirit.  The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the “firstfruits” of many to come.  (1 Corinthians 15:20,23)

1 Peter 1 (NKJV)
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you loveThough now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of gloryreceiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.

God calls us to rest our hope fully upon His grace, keeping our faith through hard times, as we are “upheld by His power”. (1 Peter 1:5).  He calls us, and enables us, to “be holy in all (our) conduct”.

1 Peter 1 (NKJV)
13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”

1 Peter 1_13 (2)

We are born again through faith in the living and enduring word of God.  Peter describes how we are to walk that out.

1 Peter 1 (NKJV)
22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever, 24 because

“All flesh is as grass,
And all the glory of man as the flower of the grass.
The grass withers,
And its flower falls away,
25 But the word of the Lord endures forever.”

Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.

1 Peter 1_23

The God of all grace has called us to eternal glory by Christ Jesus.  As we submit ourselves beneath His mighty hand,  He promises to exalt us in due time, “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”

1 Peter 5 (NKJV)
Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for
“God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”
Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.

1 Peter 5_7

He calls us to resist the devil, steadfast in the faith, and promises to “perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle us” in this pilgrimage to His eternal glory.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. 10 But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. 11 To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 05/25/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
(1) http://www.tellthelordthankyou.com/blog/2018/9/27/1-peter-13-it-was-grace-and-mercy
(2) https://resources.worldprayr.org/1-peter-18-9/
(3) https://bible.knowing-jesus.com/1-Peter/1/13
(4) https://www.verseoftheday.com/en/01232016/
(5) http://www.tellthelordthankyou.com/blog/2015/8/7/1-peter-57-casting-your-worries-on-god-or-carrying-them-on-own-which-are-you-doing

Posted by: dhkrause | May 14, 2019

He Could Have Called Ten Thousand Angels

Matthew 26_53

https://biblepic.com/44/matthew_26-53.htm

He Could Have Called Ten Thousand Angels

http://dianaleaghmatthews.com/called-ten-thousand-angels/.

This morning I woke up with this chorus going through my mind.  It turns out that the author of the song, Ray Overholt, was not saved when he wrote it.  He describes how the song brought him to the Savior:

“Sometime later I found myself singing at a small church. I sang ‘He Could Have Called Ten Thousand Angels’.  Following my singing, a preacher spoke a message that gripped my heart. I knew I needed Christ. So I knelt there and accepted, as my Savior, the One whom I had been singing and writing about.”

You can read the full story behind the song at the link above.

Here are two outstanding renditions:

Ten Thousand Angels – Stephen J. Nasby – with lyrics
https://youtu.be/bjMinJ4Seho

Ten Thousand Angels – Jamie & Karen
https://youtu.be/AnhmwjX0dFM

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 5/13/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Posted by: dhkrause | May 12, 2019

Christ in You, the Hope of Glory

Christ in You, the Hope of Glory (2)

https://aglowhouston.com/tag/hope-of-glory/

When a person receives Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, He dwells in them, “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”  He lives in us through the Holy Spirit who is given to us.  Through the Spirit, the Father and the Son of God take up residence in us, and nothing can separate us from the love of God.

In Colossians 1:27, Paul describes this as a mystery now being made known.

Colossians 1 (NKJV)
27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

Jesus taught that the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of truth, would dwell in the disciples, and He promised to be with them through the Holy Spirit.

John 14 (NKJV)
Jesus Promises Another Helper
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 you18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.

John 14_15-18

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eOaWCKqZMWw

 Jesus promised to manifest himself to them, and that both He and the Father would come and make their home in them.

John 14 (NKJV)
Indwelling of the Father and the Son
19 “A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also. 20 At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. 21 He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”

22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, how is it that You will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?”

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. 24 He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father’s who sent Me.

God will give life to our mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in us:

Romans 8 (NKJV)
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.

Romans 8_11

https://www.heartlight.org/gallery/2811.html

Those who are led by the Spirit of God are His sons and daughters.  The glory that will be revealed in us outweighs any suffering that we may experience.

Romans 8 (NKJV)
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God15 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.

18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us19 For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; 21 because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body

Romans 8_28 (3)

https://www.amazingfacts.org/news-and-features/scripture-pictures/scripture-pictures-by-verse/verse/e/28145/t/romans-8-28

 God makes all things work together for good to those who love Him, though we may not see it until later.

Romans 8 (NKJV)
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 purpose29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.

Romans 8:39 declares that nothing can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8_39

https://dailyverse.knowing-jesus.com/romans-8-39

W. Tozer wrote, “The Persons of the Godhead never work separately. Every act of God is done by all three Persons.” Jesus said the Holy Spirit would lead us into all truth, and enable us to do the works that He did.  He also declared that both He and the Father would answer our prayers.

John 14 (NKJV)
The Answered Prayer
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 (NKJV)
16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you17 These things I command you, that you love one another.

 “Christ in you, the hope of glory” is a hope that will not disappoint!

“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.”  Romans 5:5 (NKJV)

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 5/11/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Posted by: dhkrause | April 28, 2019

No Greater Love

1 Peter 3_18 (2)

There is no greater love than that revealed by the gospel of Jesus Christ.  He suffered and died for us, “the just for the unjust,”  so that by believing in Him we can have eternal life abiding in His love and glory.

1 Peter 3:18 (NKJV)
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit.

In John 10, Jesus describes himself as the good shepherd who voluntarily lays down his life for the sheep, predicting both his crucifixion and his resurrection:

John 10 (NKJV)
11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. … 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.”

John 15_13 (2)

Jesus declared in John 15:13, “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.”  He calls us friends if we walk in His love.

John 15 (NKJV)
Love and Joy Perfected
“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.

11 “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. … 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another.

In John 3, Jesus describes the greatest gift of God’s love, that we receive by faith.  Receiving this supreme gift by faith, we are inspired with thankful hearts to live for Him who died for us.

John 3 (NKJV)
13 No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. 14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 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.

John 3_16 thank you (1)

A card available from International Bible House (www.ibhgospel.com) describes this amazing gift of God’s love, and our rightful response:

“Thank You” expresses warm gratitude when someone has done something for us. Do you know the glorious thing that God has done for you?

Despite the fact that we have turned from God and gone our own way, He loved us enough to send His Son, Jesus Christ, to die for us.

Why was that even necessary?  Our rebellion (our sins) against God had separated us from Him and we were helpless to do anything to change that. But God’s wonderful gift of forgiveness is possible because Christ paid the penalty for our sins. All who believe in Him will have their sins forgiven and everlasting life.

Have you trusted Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour?  Why not take the step to thank God for what He has done?  It will make all the difference in your life.

But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory
Through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:57 (NKJV)

Romans 12 describes our reasonable response to God’s gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ:

Romans 12 (NKJV)
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Romans 12_2 (2)

Paul describes a yet greater transformation in 1 Corinthians 15: “But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. … For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”

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.

51 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”

55 “O Death, where is your sting?
O Hades, where is your victory?”

56 The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 12_2

Hebrews 12:2 declares that Jesus “for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross.”  Hebrews 2:10-11 reveals that part of that joy was “in bringing many sons to glory”… “He is not ashamed to call them brethren.” 

Hebrews 12 (NKJV)
The Race of Faith
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 2 (NKJV)
Bringing Many Sons to Glory
10 For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. 11 For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren.

There is no greater love than that which Jesus describes in His prayer for believers in John 17:22-23:

And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 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, 4/28/2019, https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:
(1) https://www.christianityeveryday.com/index.php/bible-verse-photo-1-peter-318/
(2) http://deborahhbateman.com/daily-bible-reading-greater-love-john-1513/john-15-13/
(3) http://ibhgospel.com/shop/message-cards/thank-you/
(4) http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/romans/romans12.htm
(5) https://heartpathjournal.net/2015/10/29/you-are-his-joy/

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