Sunday, January 10, 2010

Living in Darkness vs. Light

Ephesians 5:8-14
8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. 14 Therefore He says: "Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light."

The light produces good fruit (v.9)

The Light of Jesus will produce good fruit within us . . . fruit others can see. This is one reason we need others around us to not be afraid to tell us the truth of what they see in us. We should embrace their opinion and put it to prayer, rather than reject it as just "their opinion."

The light exposes our heart (v.10)
The light of Jesus exposes the motives of our heat, which is usually hidden from us, until it is too late. The Lord has to chasten because we can be stiff necked and refuse to listen.

The light exposes evil (v.12)
The light of Jesus exposes evil - the reason is because mose evil is done when it's dark or a heart has been darkened.

The light cleanses (v13-14)
Whatever is exposed to the light of Jesus will become influenced by the light . . . if only for a while - the impression as been made. Light has a healing effect. Think about bilirubin light that babies are put under to heal their bodies. When the light of Jesus is put on a sinful heart, the result can bring healing to that soul.

Believers (should) always walk in the light.

It is our choice. Unbelievers choose to walk in darkness. We can ask ourselves "what would Jesus do?" when making important decision or sharing our heart with someone.
Isaiah 60:1
Arise , shine ; for thy light is come , and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.

It is saying "Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead and Christ will shine on you!"

Luke 14:26-27
26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. 27 And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple

In the beginning of our (new) walk with Christ, our (unsaved) family members don't usually hate us. Instead they'll continue to love us, as they always have, carnally, in the flesh. When a person is reborn, they not only love one another in the flesh, but even more importantly, we love one another spiritually.

As we desire to obey God, more then man, and begin to voice our displeasure over the worldliness all around us - it upsets our family's perceived unity, causing division.

A man of the light
In Genesis 12: 1 "the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will show you."

Now here's a true example of walking by faith. Abraham had great faith in God. This belief is God was so strong the motivated him to submit AND obey God. Do we have this kind of faith? What motivates us to submit AND obey God? Abraham willingly gave up more than any other man to follow God. Even at 133 years old he couldn't just relax and enjoy is old age - God has another "test" for him.....the BIGGEST one yet! God will not tempt us (James 1:13) but he does test us.

Genesis 22:3
So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him

I think one of the most important things God wants us to understand about Abraham's faith is that he was obedient to God FIRST and was willing to make a complete break from his old life. Only when we are willing to sacrifice or give up what we may want for what God's desire is for us will be truly grown spiritually and become what God wants us to be, in Him.

1 Peter 4:16-19
16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter. 17 For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 Now "If the righteous one is scarcely saved, Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?" 19 Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good, as to a faithful Creator.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

More about us.....

We enjoy regular fellowship with one another throughout the week and not just on Sundays, like some do. We are not offended with one another as we work to hold each other accountable, striving towards increasing holiness in our lives. We fully believe Hebrews12:14 that says, "Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to BE HOLY; without holiness, NO one will see the Lord," much less enter His kingdom! Our desire is to live our lives in such a way, as to be an example and Light for the next generation to follow, leading them out of the darkness that permeates this world today. So many are being deceived and drawn into the darkness of sinfulness rather than the glory of the Light today. We pray about many of these concerns, when we come together. We have seen the power of the Holy Spirit move, our prayers answered and miracles take place, when we meet together and pray.

The study of God's Word together, enriches all of us and we look forward to it each week. Each one of us has the opportunity to share what the Lord has placed on our hearts throughout the week, because we do not have the time restraints of a traditional church service. We all remember when life was simpler and less influenced by all the sinfulness that's happening all around us today. We are grieved as we watch the world entrap so many we know and love, drawing them away from God and deafening them to the voice of the Holy Spirit. John 6:44 says, " NO ONE can come to Me UNLESS THE FATHER who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day." When this happens, GENUINE repentance takes place and a life is changed FOREVER not just a "feeling" of guilt at hearing a sermon, walking a aisle and parroting a prayer, where the "change" is only temporary. This may be conviction but not repentance, that's why it is a "feeling" and doesn't last.

This is one reason we focus a lot of our time together in prayer. We understand the importance of praying in unity. The decline of GENUINE spirituality in this world and the false representation of the gospel truths being taught by hirelings in the pulpits, has led multitudes into a self-blinded, lukewarm status. It is time those of us who know the Truth will take a stand for righteousness and holiness and refuse to bow down to the gods of this world, leading so many to hell. It is time to be like John the Baptist......a "voice in the wilderness" and speak up, with boldness. Yes, we serve a God of love but He is also a God of justice and people tend to overlook this.

Following our time of Studying God's Word and worshipping in song and praying, we enjoy "breaking bread" or eating a meal together. This is where we truly get to know one another. Many times, we spend the afternoon laughing together as we hear each others "stories" about our lives and enjoying the food we have all brought together to share. We truly experience the feeling of being the "family" of God here and look forward to the time when others will be led by the Holy Spirit, to experience with us the Light He has shown us, and together be a new life in Him. May we all grow wiser each day we live, in Him.
Daniel 12:3 says, "And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.