"Grace be to you, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ." - Ephesians 1:2
Grace and peace are inseparably linked. "Grace be to you and peace" was a common greeting in the early church. Grace is God's great kindness to those who are undeserving of it but have put their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace is the fountain and peace is the stream. We who are the recipients of His grace have "peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." We also have "the peace of God which passeth all understanding.." This is the Holy Spirit's way of assuring us that God is in control even in the midst of difficult circumstances. The world's peace is fleeting and temporary because it is grounded in circumstances. God's peace is absolute because it is grounded in God's grace.
One of my favorite poems on prayer was written by Alfred, Lord Tennyson:
"More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.
Wherefore, let thy voice rise like a fountain for me night and day.
For what are men better than sheep or goats that nourish a blind life within the brain,
If, knowing God, they lift not hands of prayer both for themselves and those who call them friends?
For so the whole round earth is every way bound by gold chains about the feet of God"
He died for our sins
He purchased us with His precious blood
He makes me whole
He is God with us
he is the Anointed One
He is the wisdom of God
He guides our steps
He can do all things
"If God be for us, who can be against us?" - Romans 8:31
That is a great verse! The psalmist wrote: "The Lord is for me, I will not fear; What can man do unto me?" (Psalm 118:6) Remember that His name is Emmanuel: God with us. Therefore all of His nature is arrayed for the defense and safety of His people. God is committed to us. It is encouraging to realize that God is with us and for us. God is ours and we are God's. Why then should anything or anybody alarm or terrify us?
"He delighteth in mercy" - Micah 7:1
Prophets, psalmists and apostles all extol God as the God of mercy. Sin puts us in need of mercy. God has revealed Himself as being rich in mercy and as One who delights in pardoning our sins, saving us and meeting our needs. He is "the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;" As such, He delights in forgiving those who repent of their sins and trust in Christ as their Savior.
Thy mercy in Jesus exempts me from hell;
Its glories I'll sing, and its wonders I'll tell
'Twas Jesus, my Friend, when He hung on the tree,
That opened the channel of mercy for me.
"For who hath despised the day of small things?" Zechariah 4:10
Often we look down upon little things as insignificant. Little things can result in great change. The mere look of Jesus resulted in a great transformation in Peter. Zacchaeus was "little of stature" but Jesus didn't by-pass him. Jesus stopped where He was. Zacchaeus was gloriously saved. The window with the two mites seemed to have given far less that what those who put in large amounts had given. Yet, Jesus said that by giving all that she possessed, she had put in more than all. How we react to little things can tell a great deal about us. We can think of words as being of little consequences but Jesus said we will account for every idle word. Beware of looking with contempt on little things.
You are writing a gospel,
A chapter each day
By the deeds that you do
And the words that you say.
Men read what you right,
Whether faithful or true;
Just what is the gospel,
According to you?
"Upholding all things by the word of His power." - Hebrews 1:3
Percy Shelley, the poet, wrote of those who "defy power which seems omnipotent." But the power of God is omnipotent. The omnipotence of Jesus Christ extends to every realm. All power is His in heaven or on earth. He unrolls all things by His authoritative Word. He is sovereign over creation, redemption, history, prophecy, current events and your life. All are in His sovereign hands. Problems and difficulties may surround your life. They may seem insurmountable to you. But be assured that His power will prevail in your life. He is able to exceeding abundantly above all that you ask or think. Remember: there is nothing to hard for Him!
Robert Louis Stevenson called courage "the footstool of the virtues, on which they stand." The Bible has much to say about Christians living courageously.
Courage is important whether it be physical, moral, or spiritual courage. Courage is certainly important for us today as we live in perilous times as we are on a collision course with the Tribulation. Moral courage often transcends physical courage and this is what we need to stand for "the Word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ" in the face of an increasing secular, godless and hostile world. Blind John Milton asked for "courage never to submit or yield." Courage is essential in spreading and preserving the truth. it takes courage to live a Christ honoring life. Courage is an expression of personal faith in Christ and our commitment to Christ and His Word. We need to "dare to be a Daniel and dare to stand alone." Remember: "It is human to stand with the crowd; it is divine to stand alone."
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Pleasant Hill Christian Church - 1712 Pleasant Hill Liberty Rd, Liberty, NC 27298 - 336.376.9653