Bad Company Corrupts Good Character 1 Cor 15:33

Bad company corrupts good character. Think carefully about what is right, and stop sinning. For to your shame I say that some of you don’t know God at all. 1 Corinthians 15:33 Company: Homillee-ah=companionship, to be friends with, partnership (strongs)

Don’t team up with those who are unbelievers.

How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? What harmony can there be between Christ and the devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever? And what union can there be between God’s temple and idols?
For we are the temple of the living God.


As God said: “I will live in them and walk among them.

I will be their God, and they will be my people.
Therefore, come out from among unbelievers,
and separate yourselves from them, says the LORD.

Don’t touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you
And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the LORD Almighty. 2 Cor 6:14-18

If God is walking with you, does He approve of the company you are with? The words spoken? The places you go?

We are 4 given commands:
1. Come out from unbelievers
2. Separate yourself from them
3. Do not touch or get near their filthy things
4. Do not team up with unbelievers

I Considered the questions Paul asked…
1. Can righteousness partner with wickedness?…well…no
2. Can light live with darkness? Uhmmm impossible
3. Can there be harmony with Christ and the Devil? Never
4. Can there be union between God’s temple and idol? No way!
5. Then why do you think a believer be a partner with an unbeliever? Because I’m wrong

This verse reminds us:
1. You are the temple of the Living God
2. He is your Father
3. You are His sons and daughters

Separate yourselves and you shall be my sons and daughters.

They can “shipwreck you”
When these people eat with you in your fellowship meals commemorating the Lord’s love, they are like dangerous reefs that can shipwreck you. They are like shameless shepherds who care only for themselves. They are like clouds blowing over the land without giving any rain. They are like trees in autumn that are doubly dead, for they bear no fruit and have been pulled up by the roots. 13 They are like wild waves of the sea, churning up the foam of their shameful deeds. They are like wandering stars, doomed forever to blackest darkness. Jude 1:12

Enjoy the company of those who call on the Lord with Pure hearts
If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.  Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts. 2 Timothy 2:22

Stay away from all believers who live idle lives and don’t follow the tradition they receivedfrom us.  For you know that you ought to imitate us. 2Thes 3:6

Stay away from them, but warn them as you would a brother or sister
Take note of those who refuse to obey what we say in this letter. Stay away from them so they will be ashamed. 15 Don’t think of them as enemies, but warn them as you would a brother or sister 2 Thes 3:6

“Stay away from people like that….
in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!  They are the kind who work their way into people’s homes and win the confidence ofvulnerable women who are burdened with the guilt of sin and controlled by various desires. 7Such women are forever following new teachings, but they are never able to understand the truth.) These teachers oppose the truth just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses. They have depraved minds and a counterfeit faith. But they won’t get away with this for long. Someday everyone will recognize what fools they are, just as with Jannes and Jambres

I call it “Keeping a healthy distance” 1 Cor 5:9-13

When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. But I wasn’t talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or are greedy, or cheat people, or worship idols. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that. I meant that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or is a drunkard, or cheats people. Don’t even eat with such people. It isn’t my responsibility to judge outsiders, but it certainly is your responsibility to judge those inside the church who are sinning. God will judge those on the outside; but as the Scriptures say, “You must remove the evil person from among you.

Associate: soon-an-am-ig-noo-mee: means to mix with, associate with, and keep company.

       This is different from the meaning of words used in other scripture (1 Cor 15:33/ Ps 106). which implies creating friendships, marriage, partnerships with unbelievers and those living in sin. It would be impossible to avoid every non believer. We do associate with them, but the scripture warns us not to joined in a relationship that could destroy our walk with the Lord. Be an example of the love of Christ and remember the people that Jesus came for – the sick, the lost, the captive, the sinners- be an example of Christ – but stay away from the sin that binds them. Putting all the scripture together, we can see that there is a line we are not to cross. We can associate with non believers living in sin, but we are not to team up with them or mingle to the point where we corrupt ourselves. Now about the believers who live in sexual sin- what would that say to the world if you were to form a partnership with them? Just think about it..on to the rest of my post…..

I teach my children that if their friends choose to be bullies and hurt others, they need to back away and find new friends to associate with. They still associate with them at times and are nice, but they are not to take part in the things they do.

What about marriage??? 1 Cor 7:12-23
 Now, I will speak to the rest of you, though I do not have a direct command from the Lord. If a Christian man has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to continue living with him, he must not leave her. And if a Christian woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to continue living with her, she must not leave him. For the Christian wife brings holiness to her marriage, and the Christian husband brings holiness to his marriage. Otherwise, your children would not be holy, but now they are holy. (But if the husband or wife who isn’t a believer insists on leaving, let them go. In such cases the Christian husband or wife is no longer bound to the other, for God has called you to live in peace.) Don’t you wives realize that your husbands might be saved because of you? And don’t you husbands realize that your wives might be saved because of you? Each of you should continue to live in whatever situation the Lord has placed you, and remain as you were when God first called you. This is my rule for all the churches. For instance, a man who was circumcised before he became a believer should not try to reverse it. And the man who was uncircumcised when he became a believer should not be circumcised now. For it makes no difference whether or not a man has been circumcised. The important thing is to keep God’s commandments. Yes, each of you should remain as you were when God called you.

Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble. Prov 13:20

You must influence them; do not let them influence you! Jeremiah 15:19

But were mingled among the heathen, and learned their works Psalm 106:33-42
Because they provoked his spirit, so that he spake unadvisedly with his lips. They did not destroy the nations, concerning whom the LORD commanded them: But were mingled among the heathen, and learned their works. And they served their idols: which were a snare unto them. Yea, they sacrificed their sons and their daughters unto devils, and shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan: and the land was polluted with blood. Thus were they defiled with their own works, and went a whoring with their own inventions. Therefore was the wrath of the LORD kindled against his people, insomuch that he abhorred his own inheritance. And he gave them into the hand of the heathen; and they that hated them ruled over them. Their enemies also oppressed them, and they were brought into subjection under their hand.

Mingle : aw-rab – to intermix, have fellowship with, mingle, partnerships

What was the trap? The snare that destroyed them? They were mingled among the heathen and learned their works.

What were the sins that they learned and lived? (nlt version)
1. They learned and adapted their evil customs
2. they worshiped their idols (worshipping things of this world –Eph 5;7-11)
3. sacrificed their sons and daughters to demons
4. shed innocent blood
5. polluted the land with murder
6. defiled themselves by their evil deed
7. adultery – their love of idols.

 Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us. 2 Thes 3: 6 

As a Christian, I find that sometimes I have to step back and stay away from certain circles of people even though I like them and enjoy their company. I cannot stand with them when they make fun of others, when they mock the weak, gossip about friends, get drunk, use filthy language, live promiscuous lives or hurt others with their words. At times I can feel sad about this and feel left out, but Psalm 1 encourages me. The words remind me of His promises for me and lead me along the path that pleases Him. My life goal is to live a life pleasing to Him. When I stop to remember 2 Cor 6:14- that He walks me, it makes me really consider the people I mingle with – would the Lord approve of this conversation?

Psalm 1- Blessings for obedience

 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

Psalm 1 instructs us:
1. Do not walk with the ungodly
2. Do not stand in the way of sinners
3. Do not sit in the seat of the scornful

Don’t participate in the things these people do Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God. You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world. Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey him. Don’t participate in the things these people do. For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.  Carefully determine what pleases the Lord.  Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them Eph 3-11

Don’t participate and don’t have it AMONG YOU –OR AROUND YOU.
 What should you keep away from? What is not for you?
1. obscene stories
2. foolish talk
3. coarse jokes
4. impurity
5. greed (idolater)
6. sexual immorality

Here’s our warning: Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey him. Don’t participate in the things these people do.
Warning: Some want to lead you astray from your fellowship with the Father and the Son 1 John 2:24-27

Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go: Lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul Prov 22:24

Instructions: 
1. Love others. 1 J 2:9 If anyone claims, “I am living in the light,” but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is still living in darkness. Anyone who loves another brother or sister is living in the light and does not cause others to stumble. But anyone who hates another brother or sister is still living and walking in darkness. Such a person does not know the way to go, having been blinded by the darkness.
2. Be careful that we don’t fall into idolatry and begin to worship the things of this world. 1 J 2:15-17: Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.
3. Be Patient with others Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.Eph 4:2
4. Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection,and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them. Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all! Romans 9:12-16

Hear the Word of the Lord

Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble. Prov 13:20

So this is what the LORD says to his people: “You love to wander far from me and do not restrain yourselves. Therefore, I will no longer accept you as my people. Now I will remember all your wickedness and will punish you for your sins.” Jeremiah 14:10

The LORD has given me a strong warning not to think like everyone else does. He said, “Don’t call everything a conspiracy, like they do, and don’t live in dread of what frightens them. Make the LORD of Heaven’s Armies holy in your life. He is the one you should fear. Isaiah 8: 11-13

Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing. Truthful words stand the test of time, but lies are soon exposed. Deceit fills hearts that are plotting evil; joy fills hearts that are planning peace! No harm comes to the godly, but the wicked have their fill of trouble. The LORD detests lying lips, but he delights in those who tell the truth. The wise don’t make a show of their knowledge, but fools broadcast their foolishness. Prov 12:18-23

All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants. John 3:20-21

Follow the steps of good men instead, and stay on the paths of the righteous. For only the godly will live in the land, and those with integrity will remain in it. But the wicked will be removed from the land, and the treacherous will be uprooted. Proverbs 2:20

If you have ever had to separate yourself from certain things, events or people because of your beliefs, you can understand how Jeremiah felt: Jeremiah 15: 15

I said “LORD, you know what’s happening to me.
Please step in and help me. Punish my persecutors!
Please give me time; don’t let me die young.
It’s for your sake that I am suffering. 
When I discovered your words, I devoured them.
They are my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name,
O LORD God of Heaven’s Armies. 
I never joined the people in their merry feasts.
I sat alone because your hand was on me.

I was filled with indignation at their sins. 
Why then does my suffering continue? Why is my wound so incurable?
Your help seems as uncertain as a seasonal brook,
like a spring that has gone dry.” 
This is how the LORD responds:
“If you return to me, I will restore you so you can continue to serve me. If you speak good words rather than worthless ones, you will be my spokesman. You must influence them; do not let them influence you!  They will fight against you like an attacking army, but I will make you as secure as a fortified wall of bronze. They will not conquer you, for I am with you to protect and rescue you. I, the LORD, have spoken!  Yes, I will certainly keep you safe from these wicked men. I will rescue you from their cruel hands.” 

  But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God.  So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God.

Dear children,
   Don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it shows that they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous.  But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God.  So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God. o you must remain faithful to what you have been taught from the beginning. If you do, you will remain in fellowship with the Son and with the Father. And in this fellowship we enjoy the eternal life he promised us.

    May the grace of the Lord be with you. May He fill you with all knowledge, wisdom and understanding. Be a light in this world. Work hard to please Him. He loves you.

www.hearhisword.wordpress.com

“Let God’s curse fall on anyone, including us or even an angel from heaven, who preaches a different kind of Good News than the one we preached to you.” Galations 1

Those who have ears….listen

Let God’s curse fall on anyone, including us or even an angel from heaven, who preaches a different kind of Good News than the one we preached to you.  I say again what we have said before: If anyone preaches any other Good News than the one you welcomed, let that person be cursed (Gal1:6-10)

Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.1j4;1

         I am shocked that you are turning away so soon from God, who called you to himself through the loving mercy of Christ. You are following a different way that pretends to be the Good News  but is not the Good News at all. You are being fooled by those who deliberately twist the truth concerning Christ.

 Let God’s curse fall on anyone, including us or even an angel from heaven, who preaches a different kind of Good News than the one we preached to you.  I say again what we have said before: If anyone preaches any other Good News than the one you welcomed, let that person be cursed.   Obviously, I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.

 I am surprised and astonished that you are so quickly turning renegade and deserting Him Who invited and called you by the grace of Christ and that you are transferring your allegiance to a different [even an opposition] gospel.  Not that there is or could be any other genuine Gospel, but there are some who are troubling and disturbing and bewildering you with a different kind of teaching which they offer as a gospel and want to pervert and distort the Gospel of Christ into something which it absolutely is not. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to and different from that which we preached to you, let him be accursed.  As we said before, so I now say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel different from or contrary to that which you received [from us], let him be accursed  Now am I trying to win the favor of men, or of God? Do I seek to please men? If I were still seeking popularity with men, I should not be a bond servant of Christ (AMPLIFIED)

DO NOT HAPPILY PUT UP WITH WHATEVER ANYONE TELLS YOU-EVEN IF THEY PREACH A DIFFERENT JESUS ….

    You happily put up with whatever anyone tells you, even if they preach a different Jesus than the one we preach, or a different kind of Spirit than the one you received, or a different kind of gospel than the one you believed. 

          I hope you will put up with a little more of my foolishness. Please bear with me. For I am jealous for you with the jealousy of God himself. I promised you as a pure bride to one husband—Christ. But I fear that somehow your pure and undivided devotion to Christ will be corrupted, just as Eve was deceived by the cunning ways of the serpent.  You happily put up with whatever anyone tells you, even if they preach a different Jesus than the one we preach, or a different kind of Spirit than the one you received, or a different kind of gospel than the one you believed. 2 Corinthians 11:4-

   DON’T ALLOW OTHER TEACHINGS TO CONFUSE YOU

This false teaching is like a little yeast that spreads through the whole batch of dough!  I am trusting the Lord to keep you from believing false teachings. God will judge that person, whoever he is, who has been confusing you. Gal 5:9-10

  WATCH OUT THAT YOU DO NOT LOSE WHAT HAS BEEN WORKED FOR….. 

 I say this because many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist. Watch out that you do not lose what we have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully. Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take them into your house or welcome them.  Anyone who welcomes them shares in their wicked work. 2 john 1:7-11

THERE ARE FALSE TEACHERS AMONG US

But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.  And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you ( In their greed they will make up clever lies to get hold of your money): whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.2 peter 2:1-3

DO NOT ADD OR SUBTRACT ANYTHING FROM HIS COMMANDS

    And now, Israel, listen carefully to these decrees and regulations that I am about to teach you. Obey them so that you may live, so you may enter and occupy the land that the Lord, the God of your ancestors, is giving you.  Do not add to or subtract from these commands I am giving you. Just obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you.“So be careful to obey all the commands I give you. You must not add anything to them or subtract anything from them. Deut 4:1-2,12:32

 AGAIN WE ARE TOLD- DO NOT TOLERATE FALSE TEACHING

“I know that you live in the city where Satan has his throne, yet you have remained loyal to me. You refused to deny me even when Antipas, my faithful witness, was martyred among you there in Satan’s city.  “But I have a few complaints against you. You tolerate some among you whose teaching is like that of Balaam, who showed Balak how to trip up the people of Israel. He taught them to sin by eating food offered to idols and by committing sexual sin.  In a similar way, you have some Nicolaitans among you who follow the same teaching.  Repent of your sin, or I will come to you suddenly and fight against them with the sword of my mouth.

 Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. Rev 2:13-17

LOOK! HE IS COMING SOON

 Let the one who is doing harm continue to do harm; let the one who is vile continue to be vile; let the one who is righteous continue to live righteously; let the one who is holy continue to be holy.”

 “Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds.  I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”  Blessed are those who wash their robes. They will be permitted to enter through the gates of the city and eat the fruit from the tree of life.  Outside the city are the dogs—the sorcerers, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idol worshipers, and all who love to live a lie.

 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this message for the churches. I am both the source of David and the heir to his throne. I am the bright morning star.”

BE CAREFUL WITH THE TEACHINGS YOU HEAR AND TEST THEM WITH SCRIPTURE

 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” Let anyone who hears this say, “Come.” Let anyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who desires drink freely from the water of life.  And I solemnly declare to everyone who hears the words of prophecy written in this book: If anyone adds anything to what is written here, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book.  And if anyone removes any of the words from this book of prophecy, God will remove that person’s share in the tree of life and in the holy city that are described in this book.

He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon!”
Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!
May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s holy people
 If anyone does not love the Lord, that person is cursed. Our Lord, come!
May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with you.
My love to all of you in Christ Jesus 1 cor 16:22-24, Rev 22,1john 4

REMEMBER YOUR FIRST LOVE

26 Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins. 27 There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies. 28 For anyone who refused to obey the law of Moses was put to death without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 Just think how much worse the punishment will be for those who have trampled on the Son of God, and have treated the blood of the covenant, which made us holy, as if it were common and unholy, and have insulted and disdained the Holy Spirit who brings God’s mercy to us. 30 For we know the one who said,

“I will take revenge. I will pay them back.” He also said, “The Lord will judge his own people.”

31 It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.  Think back on those early days when you first learned about Christ.[j] Remember how you remained faithful even though it meant terrible suffering. 33 Sometimes you were exposed to public ridicule and were beaten, and sometimes you helped others who were suffering the same things. 34 You suffered along with those who were thrown into jail, and when all you owned was taken from you, you accepted it with joy. You knew there were better things waiting for you that will last forever.

35 So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! 36 Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.

37 “For in just a little while, the Coming One will come and not delay. And my righteous ones will live by faith. But I will take no pleasure in anyone who turns away.”  But we are not like those who turn away from God to their own destruction. We are the faithful ones, whose souls will be saved. Heb 10:24-29

1 John 4

He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon!”
Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!
May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s holy people
 If anyone does not love the Lord, that person is cursed. Our Lord, come!
May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with you.
My love to all of you in Christ Jesus

CALM DOWN!!!! Psalm 131 calm down! calm down!

Lord, my heart is not haughty,
Nor my eyes lofty.
Neither do I concern myself with great matters,
Nor with things too profound for me.
Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul,
Like a weaned child with his mother;
Like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forever.

           I don’t know about you, but sometimes when I stop to pray- even if my surroundings are quiet and calm, my mind is going a million miles per hour. I just can’t seem to quiet my mind down enough to pray-  or even to quiet my mind in order for Him to speak to me. It’s like my mind is a wild race horse running away from it’s owner-“Hey! Get back here, I need you!”

In the quietness of my house I knelt down quietly, bowed my head- and off I went…..

“Dear Lord,
      blah blah blah blah- what do I do about this, and what about that, agh! do I have to look at my sins? can I just pray? uh,my dog barking, great there’s my phone ringing …. O Jesus my heart and mind are running mad, I wish I was on a Billy Graham retreat …  I have a million things to discuss talk about, ask, and an innumerable amount of prayer requests for others, is there room for me and oh my kids, and my family and I have to do my dishes and go to work and do you know what someone said to me and when can I go to the gym, oh yes, my husband, and talk talk talk talk oh yes and thank you thank you give me wisdom and Lord I’m all confused and my mind is going to fast for me to prrrraaaaaaaaay,Oh Jesus, help me calm down so I can pray.”

I sat in silence-a bit sad that I was too hyper in my mind to feel like I could talk to the Lord.

  Again I asked “ Lord help me calm down so I can pray

Kind of disturbed with myself, I got up, sat on the couch and opened up my bible to wherever. I opened up to Psalm 131— and read

“ I have calmed and  quieted myself”

Lord, my heart is not proud;
my eyes are not haughty.
I don’t concern myself with matters too great
or too awesome for me to grasp.
Instead, I have calmed and quieted myself,
like a weaned child who no longer cries for its mother’s milk.
Yes, like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, put your hope in the Lord—  now and always

Wow, that’s weird……I just prayed for that. I began to read, reread, ponder and meditate until I had the entire verse memorized.  After hours of studying this scripture, something supernatural happened. It was amazing.  How can I explain it?????  I felt as if I was underwater swimming – in a beautiful place- quietness surrounded me and my soul was calm. My mind was refreshed and silenced as I looked in awe and wonder of God’s great creation.  Quiet… beautiful.. 
   To prepare my mind and heart for prayer, I always stop to meditate on this verse. 

Walk with me through the scripture……….

Psalm 131
Lord my heart is not Proud,

            I don’t consider myself above others, this only leads to restlessness. I don’t hunger for adoration or attention. I consider Moses, the most humble man on the earth. I put others first. This humbleness and contentment allows God’s leading in our life. I don’t need to prove myself to others, but the Lord is my security.
           I keep far from pride and check my heart for any hidden pride that may have snuck in. Uh ooo- everytime I meditate on this, it’s as if the Lord opens my eyes to hidden sins I didn’t see- maybe unforgiveness that snuck in, the way I treated someone, not putting Him first, or wrong motives.  Father keep me humble and non judgemental. Teach me to live like Jesus, seeing others greater than I and being a servant to others. Let me not seek fame, wealth or anything this world has to offer, but give my life and heart and mind to the Lord.
 
My eyes are not haughty
              
My eyes do not condemn others. I don’t think I’m better than other people. I put others first and consider them. Have I been selfish? Have I looked down on someone else because of the way they look or dress? Lord, forgive me for my pride and help me live with a humble heart.  Put others first – this is the way to lead others to Christ. Teach me to die to myself and let Christ reign in my life.

I don’t consider myself with things to great for me to grasp. Neither do I concern myself with great matters,Nor with things too profound for me.     
     I put my life in the Lord’s hands and trust Him. I bring my thoughts, anxieties and my unanswered questions captive to Jesus. I don’t worry about matters that surround me, for I know the Lord takes care of me. I remember Isaiah 51:12 that reminds me not to worry about the words of defeat and despair around me, but to put all my trust in my heavenly Father.
      Sure, I want all the answers….but patience is key as well as bringing thoughts to Christ.
       Don’t sit and worry- why? how? what if? what’s going to happen? what will they think of me? Don’t worry and don’t be concerned with these things. Think only of things that are true, God honoring, worthy of Praise, trustworthy,  holy, thankfulness, noble and virtuous (Phil 4:8) bringing all things up to Him in prayer.

I have calmed and quieted myself
        Ahhhhhh – that feels good to be calm and worry free. God has calmed my heart. It is like diving into a beautiful ocean deep within the sea. There is quietness and calmness around me. My heart is calm and quiet as I am surrounded by His Glory and beauty. In Wonderous awe, I am silenced as I see the beauty that surrounds me. There I am, surrounded by His awesome works and His mighty Power.
          Be calm and quiet- Fix your thoughts

Like a weaned child with his mother

        My complete trust and faith in Him grows more and more each day. I know He takes care of me and will always supply all my needs. I don’t need to throw myself on the ground, kicking and screaming about what may happen tomorrow. I know the Lord will supply and surround me with all the grace I need for each day.
       Like a child who fully trusts in his parents- who doesn’t need to worry about tomorrow- so is my soul within me.

Like a weaned child is my soul within me

  Just in case it didn’t sink in the first time,  the bible repeats this for confirmation.As a content child, so is my soul- fully trusting, content, and calm. I am like a child who has everything he wants or needs. My heart is calm and content. I have everything I need in Christ Jesus. I am happy, content and quiet- and so is my soul.  The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. He leads me, He guides me, He restores me and prepares a table before me in the presence of my enemies. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I shall dwell in the House of the Lord forever

O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forever.
   Dear Child of God, you can put your trust in Him. O Lord, I put all my hope in you, now and forever.

 ( I’ve been tested on calmness the entire time I’ve been writing this post. My teenager decided now would be the perfect time to have a meltdown about sport tryouts, my dog hasn’t stopped barking, I got locked in the office as I was writing because the doorknobs fell off then my entire computer shut down and everything disappeared- then my side dish I made for dinner has mysteriously disappeared and now I have to cook again. hmmmm)


Scripture to meditate on:

Zephaniah 3:17 For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.”
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid
 Isaiah 30:15  This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust (confidence) is your strength
Isaiah 32:17  The fruit of that righteousness will be peace; its effect will be quietness and confidence forever.
Zechariah 2:13 Be still before the LORD, all people, because he has roused himself from his holy dwelling.”
Exodus 14:14 :The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
Mark 4:39 : He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm
1 Thessalonians 4:11 and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you,
1 Peter 3:4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price
Job 6:24 TNIV :Teach me, and I will be quiet; show me where I have been wrong.
1 Peter 3:11Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it
Joshua 1:8  Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
Psalm 1:2 but who delight in the law of the LORD and meditate on his law day and night.
Psalm 77:12I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds.” -they are constantly on my thoughts, I cannot stop thinking about your mighty works.
Ps.119:11  I have hidden your word in my heart.
Psalm 119:48 I reach out for your commands, which I love, that I may meditate on your decrees.
Psalm 119:78 May the arrogant be put to shame for wronging me without cause; but I will meditate on your precepts.
Psalm 145:5 They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty— and I will meditate on your wonderful works
Psalm 107:43Let all who are wise heed these things and ponder the loving deeds of the LORD.
Psalm 111:2Great are the works of the LORD; they are pondered by all who delight in them.
Psalm 5:3 In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.

Isaiah 51:12: I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass;
Psalm 27:14Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.
Psalm 33:20 We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield
Psalm 37:7Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Psalm 38:15 LORD, I wait for you; you will answer, Lord my God.
Proverbs 20:22 Do not say, “I’ll pay you back for this wrong!” Wait for the LORD, and he will avenge you
Psalm 130:5I wait for the LORD, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.
Psalm 130:6 I wait for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning.
Isaiah 30:18 Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!
Isaiah 64:4 Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.

       We wont hear the Lord’s voice if we are so busy, anxious, worried, hurried and stressed. The Lord is always speaking to us. I always hear- as if it is a light rain always falling “I love you, I love you, I love you” he showers down upon us throughout the day.

And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen Romans 16:20

The Gift of Teaching : Teach and lead others along God’s Path. (42 Biblical guidelines for teachers) Mark 6

Guidelines for Teachers of the Word

   Are a teacher of the Word? Are you a shepherd to your flock?  It doesn’t matter if you teach or preach to millions, a few friends, or our own children- these words are for everyone . I went through some scripture to find out what the Lord expects of those who teach. There is much more than what I wrote here- but could take me years to compile the list. 

Remember  There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all.  There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord.  God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us. A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other….. He alone decides which gift each person should have.
      Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.  And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles?  Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret?  But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way.

42 Biblical Guidelines for teachers

1. Teach the Lord’s ways and the way of righteousness.

2. Prepare your heart with all determination to seek Him ( Ezra 7)

3. Prepare your heart to do this and not to give up or quit.

4. Teach with God’s wisdom, not your own

5. Don’t teach from doctrines or the commands of Men (Matt 15:9, Mk7:7)

6. Teach others to observe all the things Jesus commanded us (love, mercy, forgiveness, etc)

7. Teach and Preach the Word of the Lord.

8. Teach these things that concern the Lord Jesus Christ with all confidence and boldness. Don’t let anyone stop you-(Acts 28:31)

9. Teach every man in all (God’s) wisdom, warning every man that we may present every man perfect in Christ.

10. Teach and lead others along God’s path as a loving shepherd lead His sheep.Mk 6:34

11. Teach them of things to come Mk 8:31

12. Don’t stop teaching about Jesus Christ- don’t give up

13. Be blameless, trustworthy, and of good behavior giving often to hospitality.1T3:2

14. Teach others to teach- teach faithful men to teach. Commit the truth to these faithful men

15. Teachers must be gentle, patient and do not allow the teaching of anything ungodly.

16. Let the Lord’s commands be your constant guide Ps 119:99

17. Study the Word of god with all determination Ezra 7:10

18. Obey the Lord and His Words.

19. Teach His doctrines and regulations to the people.

20. Don’t miss the point of your purpose.

21. Don’t spend your time in meaningless discussions.

22. Your purpose in teaching this good news is to have all believers be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and genuine faith

23. Always check your pride. Psalms 131 always helps me with this. When the enemy throws wrong thoughts and false ideas in my head- I fix my thoughts and don’t let it enter (Phil 4:8) BUT if I’m caught off guard and some ungodly pride tries to come in- Psalm 131 is my weapon and my sword. It always destroys and smashes any hidden haughtiness or pride that might have snuck in. I try to recite it before every prayer- this psalm is supernatural for me. It calms me down and gets me quieted down in my heart and mind preparing me before I go to the Lord. It calms my mind when my thoughts are racing and I feel wound up. It brings a quiet peace over me. Ps 131 is my secret weapon.

 Lord, my heart is not proud my eyes are not haughty.
I don’t concern myself with matters too great or too awesome for me to grasp.
Instead, I have calmed and quieted myself,
like a weaned child who no longer cries for its mother’s milk.
Yes, like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, put your hope in the LORD— now and always.
        One gift is not greater than the other. We are all part of one body.

24. Cling to your faith in Christ and keep your conscience clear. Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit with the things you allow yourself to see, hear, say or go. Be careful! Don’t let your faith get shipwrecked 1 Tim 1:19

25. Be Prepared for opposition- A time is coming ( and I believe it is here) when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear

26. Don’t preach for man’s approval

27. Don’t teach for man’s approval. Fear God.

28. Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive His approval

29. Work hard at telling others the good news.

30. Fully carry out the ministry the Lord has given you

31. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord

32. Keep a clear mind in every situation 2 tim 4:5

33. Endure Suffering

34. Stand up! Don’t quit! Your enemy wants to make you feel defeated and make you feel bound and held back- but you know you are NOT! You have the power of God living inside of you.

35. Stand up strong soldier for Christ – don’t get involved and tied up in the affairs of civilian life

36. Teach the Good News- that Jesus Christ, a descendant of King David was raised from the dead.

37. Always be ready to share your faith

38. Know how to correctly explain the Word of Truth 2 Tim 2:11-13

39. Be kind to everyone (even difficult people)

40. Gently instruct those who oppose the truth, perhaps God will change their hearts. ( and remember: we do God’s work and He does the rest. Send out His Word, and He makes sure it does not come back void (Is 55) We pray for healing and He does the healing- Do what the Lord calls you to do and be confident in this :that He who began this good work in you will make sure it is carried on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Phil 1:6)

41. And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching. Titus 2:7

42. Free those in captivity, set the prisoners free. Do the works Jesus showed us bringing all glory to God the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost. We must become less and less and He MUST BECOME MORE AND MORE.

Never give up! Run to Win! Dust yourself off and Keep on Keeping ON

      Be Strong in the Lord and the in the Power of His Might. The Lord wants you to be aware that your enemy the devil wants to destroy, discourage and make you feel defeated. You must remember the Power of God lives within you. You must continue on and be determined to never quit or give up!  Practice controlling your thoughts. If someone says something negative or mocks you- decide not to ponder on it. Practice Philippians 4:8 and Fix your thoughts, stay focused and stand strong.

     Remember what the great men of the bible went through like Jeremiah, Elijah, Isaiah – they certainly did not live an easy life.  I noticed that satan has certain targets, for example – Job- a goldly and innocent man, and Daniel- how the angel of Persia tried to interfere with Daniel’s prayers, and also Peter- Jesus told Peter that Satan had asked to sift him like wheat.

    Don’t find it a strange thing if you are not well liked, if you are mocked or hated. Never give up and Never quit!  Rejoice in your trials and tribulations  and count it all joy when you fall into various trials.

A challenge?
    And I venture this one thing more- if you are not suffering for the sake of the good news, enduring hardship, mocked, hated by the world or rejected in some way for your teaching or beliefs……. I wonder- is their something more the Lord has called you to do and you have not stepped out and obeyed?

If we don’t Love others we are just a bunch of noisemakers

 “And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am both nothing.

“for the gracious hand of his God was on him for Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the LORD, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel” Ezra 7:9-10

 Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled.  In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us. Titus 2:6-8

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,  so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Tim 3:16-17

 Devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. Tim 4:13

2 John 1:9 Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son.

Acts 5:42 Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah.

 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us….if it is teaching, then teach. Romans 12