Tag Archives: reward

Rediscovering the Christmas Season XII – True Love


True Love

Exposure: Read the warning against turning from your first love. Look up the lyrics of The Twelve Days of Christmas. Find at least one other person to sing it with you.

Exploration: Who is your first love? Think back to how your feelings of love change over time. In what ways can you relate to the Ephesian church?

Expression: Write lyrics to your own version of the song as an expression of what you would like to give to Jesus—your true first love. Include in your song the pieces of your life that He wants, the changes He wants you to make, and the things He wants you to take action on.

Experience: Read the passage from 1 John about his great love for us. What gifts has our True Love already given to you?

REV 2:2-5 NKJV – “I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars;  and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary.  Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.  Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent.

1JN 3:1-3 NKJV – Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. 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.

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Before the Cross VI


MATTHEW 24:30-31 NET – Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man arriving on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.  And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet blast, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

MATTHEW 24:27 NET – For just like the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so the coming of the Son of Man will be.

1 CORINTHIANS 15:50-52 NET – Now this is what I am saying, brothers and sisters: Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.  Listen, I will tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed –  in a moment, in the blinking of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.

MATTHEW 23:39 NET – For I tell you, you will not see me from now until you say, ‘ Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! ’”

MATTHEW 16:27 NET –  For the Son of Man will come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done .

REVELATION 22:12 NET – O
(Look! I am coming soon, and my reward is with me to pay each one according to what he has done!

Before The Cross: We Are Powerful

For believers, we actually have God within us. Not only does the Holy Spirit guarantee our inheritance (Ephesians 1:13-14), but He helps us in our weakness and leads us in how to glorify God and how to live the Christian life.

If we were left to be led by our own sinful flesh, we would only want to serve and glorify ourselves. It is only by the power of the Holy Spirit, that we can do anything and serve the Lord. The Spirit even intercedes for us on our behalf as we pray to God (Romans 8:26-28).

Let us be confident as sons and daughters of the King. Let’s be confident in the fact (because the Bible says so) that we have God within us. If He is in us and leads us, anything is possible. If God is for us, who could be against us? What a honor and privilege that He would see our bodies fit as a dwelling place for Him.

And in the end, He will be Glorious…

The Faith of Elisha I


1KINGS 19:14-21 ESV

He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord , the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” And the Lord said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. And when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. And Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint to be king over Israel, and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint to be prophet in your place. And the one who escapes from the sword of Hazael shall Jehu put to death, and the one who escapes from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha put to death. Yet I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.”  So he departed from there and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen in front of him, and he was with the twelfth. Elijah passed by him and cast his cloak upon him. And he left the oxen and ran after Elijah and said, “Let me kiss my father and my mother, and then I will follow you.” And he said to him, “Go back again, for what have I done to you?” And he returned from following him and took the yoke of oxen and sacrificed them and boiled their flesh with the yokes of the oxen and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he arose and went after Elijah and assisted him.

Elisha’s story begins in 1 Kings 19:14-21 as God tells Elijah to anoint Elisha as the prophet to replace him. In this passage we read that Elijah finds Elisha plowing in a field with a pair of oxen and immediately throws his mantle on Elisha as an invitation to follow him. Elisha immediately obeys and burns his plow and cooks the oxen and gives it to his friends to eat. Elisha exhibited ridiculous commitment to Elijah. He wasted no time in obeying. He didn’t go away to take time to think about it. He didn’t write out a list of pros and cons. He didn’t play it safe. He immediately said yes to God’s calling through Elijah.

Elisha’s ridiculous commitment shows that the cost of following God is great, but the cost of not following Him is even greater. Furthermore, Elisha’s commitment was complete. He burned his plows, slaughtered his oxen, and left his family’s inheritance behind. He left everything he knew and loved behind. Elisha shows us that to step toward your destiny, you have to step away from your security. Is your commitment to God immediate and complete like Elisha’s? What security might you need to walk away from in order to walk toward your destiny?

Courtesy of LifeChurch.tv


Johann Arndt, a follower of Martin Luther said, “When you get to heaven, God will not ask you what you know, but rather how you have loved.”

1 John 4:7 (KJV)
7  Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. 

 John 13:35 (DRV)
35  By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one for another.