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    • By 1Timothy115 in Devotionals
         11
      Psalms 119:1-8                                         Sep. 5 - Oct. 2, 2019
      1 ALEPH. Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD.
      2 Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart.
      3 They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways.
      4 Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently.
      5 O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes!
      6 Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments.
      7 I will praise thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned thy righteous judgments.
      8 I will keep thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly.
      The following verse stood out to me...
      5 O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes!
      At first glance it seemed to me this person’s soul is poured out with intense desire to have God’s direction in keeping His Word.
      I made a small wood fire in our backyard for my granddaughter, Julia, since she would be staying overnight with us. My wife and Julia stayed outside at the fire for about half an hour. Then, I found myself alone to watch the fire die out on a particularly lovely evening. So I took my verse from above and began to repeat it for memorization. As I repeated the verse, I tried to contemplate the words and apply them to what I was seeing around me. 
      The moon and stars were out now peering through the scattered clouds above.
      [Genesis 1:16 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. Genesis 1:17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, Genesis 1:18 And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.]
      Thought 1         
      The moon has stayed his course since the day God created him, also the stars, obeying the statutes directed by God from the first day they were created. Can you imagine God’s direction to the Moon and stars, “moon you will have a path through the sky above the earth, stars you will occupy the firmament above the moon and be clearly visible in the cloudless night sky.”
      Then, the trees, grass, even the air we breathe obey the statues God gave them from the beginning. None of these creations have souls, none have hearts, none have intelligence, but they all observe God’s statutes, His instructions for their limited time on earth.
      Thought 2
      What if we were like the moon, stars, trees, grass, or the other creations which have no soul? We would be directed to keep God’s statutes without choosing to keep them. This is not the image of God, there would be no dominion over other creatures, or over the earth. We would not be capable of experiencing the joy and peace of learning the love of God
      Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
      Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
      Thought 3 (October 2, 2019)
      Is the psalmist pleading God to force God’s statutes to become the man’s ways? No, he is speaking of his own failure in keeping God’s statutes and his desire to keep them, very much like Paul in Romans 7:14-25.
      God doesn’t work through force to turn men from their ways that they would desire His statutes or desire God Himself. Men must reject (repent) put aside his own ways and voluntarily seek God and His statutes.

Scripture - what was the effect on you?

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So, do you have a scripture which recently or previously influenced you or made a positive change in you. How did it provide, reproof, correction, instruction, confirmation, encouraging, or joy?

Nothing too personal, use some discretion for the audience sake.

Recently, more than one verse...
When your morning devotion falls on Psalms 139 self-reflection comes easily to any who walk the pilgrim’s way. If tears blur your reading before you’re half way through the twenty-four verses, it’s understandable. David states that the Lord has searched him and known him within the first six verses. Then, in the last two verses he asks for God to do it again. "23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: 24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." The first six remind me of my salvation and the last two remind me of the need for continuing sanctification. This David (I) can identify well with the David of this Psalm. I received reproof (I know I will fail God's search of me), confirmation (God is at work molding me) , encouragment (God cares and reveals my needs), and joy (tears and thanksgiving because God loves me). I know it was long but what a blessing it was to me?

Edited by 1Timothy115
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Reading through Jeremiah,  I got a renewed perspective on the judgment God was giving Israel.

Before I was thinking worldly, looking at the judgment as too harsh and to much punishment being repeated..

 

Then I realised first.. since God is doing something about Israel's idolatry, He is showing He cares for Israel.

 

Second, God was forewarning what would happen to Israel/Judah. He didn't just wipe them out, do the judgment. Even though they were doing evil God gave them many chances to turn to Him.

Third, the forewarning can be read as God crying out to Israel with a broken heart... as Jeremiah was in that state of broken hearted ness.

So Jeremiah,  despite the judgment and warnings can be read as  a love letter

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9 hours ago, 360watt said:

Reading through Jeremiah,  I got a renewed perspective on the judgment God was giving Israel.

Before I was thinking worldly, looking at the judgment as too harsh and to much punishment being repeated..

 

Then I realised first.. since God is doing something about Israel's idolatry, He is showing He cares for Israel.

 

Second, God was forewarning what would happen to Israel/Judah. He didn't just wipe them out, do the judgment. Even though they were doing evil God gave them many chances to turn to Him.

Third, the forewarning can be read as God crying out to Israel with a broken heart... as Jeremiah was in that state of broken hearted ness.

So Jeremiah,  despite the judgment and warnings can be read as  a love letter

I heard a preacher once say that Jeremiah is a good book to study for the man of God in the latter days or who is laboring in a very hard area. This is because despite all his preaching and crying over souls Jeremiah only had one convert and that was Baruch. 

Edited by SureWord
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45 minutes ago, SureWord said:

I heard a preacher once say that Jeremiah is a good book to study for the man of God in the latter days or who is laboring in a very hard area. This is because despite all his preaching and crying over souls Jeremiah only had one convert and that was Baruch. 

Yeah, that is a key comparison with latter days too.

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On 2/16/2021 at 3:53 AM, 360watt said:

Reading through Jeremiah,  I got a renewed perspective on the judgment God was giving Israel.

Before I was thinking worldly, looking at the judgment as too harsh and to much punishment being repeated..

 

Then I realised first.. since God is doing something about Israel's idolatry, He is showing He cares for Israel.

 

Second, God was forewarning what would happen to Israel/Judah. He didn't just wipe them out, do the judgment. Even though they were doing evil God gave them many chances to turn to Him.

Third, the forewarning can be read as God crying out to Israel with a broken heart... as Jeremiah was in that state of broken hearted ness.

So Jeremiah,  despite the judgment and warnings can be read as  a love letter

Me too, countless times prior understanding of scriptures changed by further study in God's Word. How many times I missed the need to ask God to help me understand, sadly they are countless too.

I just read in Spurgeon's Morning by Morning today, "Prayer is always the preface to blessing. It goes before the blessing as the blessing's shadow. When the sunlight of God's mercies rises upon our necessities, it casts the shadow of prayer far down upon the plain."

"How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!" [Proverbs 16:16]

Edited by 1Timothy115
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3 hours ago, 1Timothy115 said:

 

Me too, countless times prior understanding of scriptures changed by further study in God's Word. How many times I missed the need to ask God to help me understand, sadly they are countless too.

I just read in Spurgeon's Morning by Morning today, "Prayer is always the preface to blessing. It goes before the blessing as the blessing's shadow. When the sunlight of God's mercies rises upon our necessities, it casts the shadow of prayer far down upon the plain."

"How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!" [Proverbs 16:16]

I used to pray every time before reading the Bible. For some reason I've stopped though sometimes I'll pray during reading. Prayer has always been a struggle for me.

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Indeed, I have a story about how Scripture (unadulterated by men) changed my future and the futures of my sphere of influence. For over 30 years I was deceived by a "gospel message" that counted the costs of my belief for me.

Everything changed eight years ago. I began an experiment based on God's Word. God tells us that faith comes by hearing the Word of God. It doesn't say by reading, it says by "hearing". I know, seems like a semantics argument but in the reality of practice it is far from it.

At first I had to force myself to listen but it did not take long at all before I started hearing truths I had never heard before from any preacher ever. Quickly I became immersed in listening in prayer as dots started connecting and even the most widely held fundamentalist teachings were exposed by God's Word as false.

After a short few months of listening intently in prayer several hours a day, even while commuting, the crushing weight of the Spirit's conviction and my fake profession became clearer and clearer to me. You see it was context that became crystal clear in passages unlike anything I experienced before. In addition to context, listening prayerfully cross references Scripture in your mind much more than before. This of course, prompted in depth study.

I soon discovered that I had only been taught bits and pieces of God's Word, plucked out of context, isolated and declared "sound doctrine". I had been given a vaccine AGAINST the true Gospel of our Lord. I was brainwashed into religion in Jesus' Name, and not yet born again by the Spirit of God.

I also realized that I was working the works of men to be seen of them more than anything else. I realized that I had merely added religion in Jesus' name to my life, made the symptoms of sin less noticeable outwardly and followed the preaching from the pulpits. Nearly every supposedly Bible-based doctrine I had been repeatedly taught by men started to unravel as fiction. Leading the pack of apostasy is the fake "gospel" of a fictional "jesus". What God's Spirit taught me through listening first and foremost is men's outrageous audacity to proclaim any other person as born again. The Spirit's stark reality hit me: Every person proclaimed saved by men ARE TARES created by tares - just like I was.

The Spirit's witness with my spirit did not exist. Only religious brainwashing did. I kept the sword, I kept my ambitions for a better temporary life and success according to men and I kept those ambitions for my children, continuing to store treasure on earth for our futures and kept my ego alive and well away from church, in other words, all the cares of this life. Oh, but I went to "church" 3 times a week and gave my 10% as instructed, working various ministries over the years.

The new birth cannot be witnessed by others according to God, only the affects of regeneration are noticeable to others and these affects are not what I was lead to believe by men. The new birth is intimate and personal between a believer and our Lord and cannot be dictated, reinforced, witnessed or proclaimed by others. No where in Scripture is reassurance ever given to any believer by men. Nor is any person ever declared saved by men. Only our Lord made any declaration of this sort because it is a matter of the heart, invisible to men.

The Spirit showed me that this cheapened "gospel" of these last days in which salvation is proclaimed but disciples are never made is a counterfeit gospel not contained in contextual Scripture. Plenty of "converts" and even preachers are produced but no crucified with Christ disciples.

Our Lord taught in His Gospels and reiterated throughout the NT that only those whose Spirit's desire is to overcome the world as HE DID are truly His. Christ's Example is the antithesis of the natural man. Not resisting evil, not rendering railing for railing, not taking up arms, turning the other cheek, giving to all who ask, meekness (the absence of ego), mercy, peacemaking, etc. This is the Spirit of Christ. If that isn't you yet, then get busy and get away from the noise of the harlots and their adulterous, convoluted teachings. Focus only on his Word while there is still time and there isn't much time left. Stop counting the costs in this soon to end world. At the very least, this will strengthen your faith in every way and with these trying times, that is exactly what everyone needs right now. 

Bread of Life

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2 hours ago, wretched said:

The new birth cannot be witnessed by others according to God, only the affects of regeneration are noticeable to others and these affects are not what I was lead to believe by men. The new birth is intimate and personal between a believer and our Lord and cannot be dictated, reinforced, witnessed or proclaimed by others. No where in Scripture is reassurance ever given to any believer by men. Nor is any person ever declared saved by men. Only our Lord made any declaration of this sort because it is a matter of the heart, invisible to men.

 

2 hours ago, wretched said:

Stop counting the costs in this soon to end world. At the very least, this will strengthen your faith in every way and with these trying times, that is exactly what everyone needs right now. 

I read it all but these two areas I could identify with most. The first quote is something I came to realize, the intimate and personal relationship with Jesus Christ and in Christ alone. The second quote I have sufficient means for all my needs. Now, this said, I'm still being sanctified. I think the Lord is working  in the hearts of His own to prepare us for His soon meeting with us. Thank you for your openness and honesty.

On 2/19/2021 at 2:05 PM, SureWord said:

I used to pray every time before reading the Bible. For some reason I've stopped though sometimes I'll pray during reading. Prayer has always been a struggle for me.

I've just recently had a realization of a lack of prayer but mine is a need to pray always, especially during difficulties no matter how much I would like to 'handle' it myself. 

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14 hours ago, 1Timothy115 said:

 

 

I've just recently had a realization of a lack of prayer but mine is a need to pray always, especially during difficulties no matter how much I would like to 'handle' it myself. 

I just picked me up a prayer journal where you write down who or what you are praying for and then there's a section for when it is answered. I figured this might help me be more disciplined with it especially for praying for individuals.

 

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6 hours ago, SureWord said:

I just picked me up a prayer journal where you write down who or what you are praying for and then there's a section for when it is answered. I figured this might help me be more disciplined with it especially for praying for individuals.

 

I keep a spreadsheet for my journal and daily devotions, it's worked well for me for many years now. Do what works for you. I thought of you and our conversation while reading this morning... I was reading from Psalms 145 and the verse that caught my attention was... 18 The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth. 

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23 hours ago, wretched said:

The Spirit's witness with my spirit did not exist. Only religious brainwashing did. I kept the sword, I kept my ambitions for a better temporary life and success according to men and I kept those ambitions for my children, continuing to store treasure on earth for our futures and kept my ego alive and well away from church, in other words, all the cares of this life. Oh, but I went to "church" 3 times a week and gave my 10% as instructed, working various ministries over the years.

I thought about you too today during Pastor's message, "Eschewing Worldly Behaviors In The Last Days" from 2 Tim. 3:1-9. During the message pastor referenced 1 Tim. 6:17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;

"nor trust in uncertain riches"

"but (trust) in the living God"

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