Outpourings of Love

…from Luke 7:36-50
(likely in Capernaum)

A certain woman of the city heard that Jesus was at the home of Simon, a Pharisee. So she came with an alabaster flask of ointment–her sins had weighed her down very heavily. Her tears washed Jesus’ feet, which she kissed and wiped with her hair–then anointed them with the oil–all tokens of the love she had come there to share.

Simon’s thought was that Jesus should have known that she was a woman to shun. If Jesus was truly a prophet, he would not have permitted her because of the things she’d done. Jesus then told him a story of two debtors, freely forgiven of debts of lesser and greater amounts. It was an explanation to Simon of a sinner’s gratefulness–her debt of sin was large (and, therefore, so was her love) by all accounts.

Jesus expressed appreciation for her kisses and for the tears that she had shed. “Your sins are forgiven” and “Your faith has saved you; go in peace,” He said. Those who sat at the table with Him began to discuss that, saying “Who is this?” His forgiveness of her sins was an authoritative statement they really couldn’t dismiss. 

…from John 12:1-8
(in Bethany at the home of Lazarus, Martha, and Mary)

In another narrative, six days before Passover, the scriptures tell of Mary–who used spikenard, a costly oil–the fragrance of which, the entire house would carry. After supper, there in Bethany, she anointed Jesus’ feet, also wiping them with her hair. Judas then asked why the oil hadn’t been sold and the money been given to the poor–not that he actually did care.

Jesus told Judas to let her alone for she had kept the oil for His burial day. “For the poor you have with you always, but Me you do not have always,” was what He had to say.

…from Matthew 26:6-13 and Mark 14:3-9
(in Bethany)

A similar occurrence at the house of Simon the leper, Matthew and Mark record,
was that of a woman who took spikenard, pouring it, this time, upon the head of Jesus, her Lord. There were some who, like Judas, criticized her, saying that the oil might have been sold for the poor. But Jesus said she had done this for His burial, speaking of her with grace, and that in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, she would forever have a place.

Today, God is pouring out His love and the Holy Spirit upon each open heart. May we fill our own “alabaster jars,” with love for Him, and eagerly do our part. There’s a world of people Jesus died for, and many are in great need. Guide and strengthen us, Lord, as we seek to be Your servants, caring with both word and deed.

We thank You for Your great sacrifice; we thank You for Your steadfast love. We appreciate so much what it cost You to visit us from heaven above.

P. A. Oltrogge

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16

“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1 John 4:7-11

“Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8 

“And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly I say to you inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’” Matthew 25:40 (and verses 31-46) NKJV

“And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and are in him that is true, even in his Son, Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.” 1 John 5:20 KJV

“Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments, and abide in His love.” John 15:9-10 

Scriptures: NASB/Ryrie Study Bible, or as noted

(These accounts were described as they’re told in the four different scripture references.)

What time is it?

I will bless the Lord at all times, His praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1

When troubles disappoint, overwhelm, or sometimes shock, remember, then, what time it is–it’s always Praise o’clock!

As much-loved members of the Good Shepherd’s flock, His goodness makes us praise Him all around the clock.

After praise and a mighty shout, the walls of Jericho fell down flat. The people followed Joshua’s instructions, and that was that!

When Daniel faced the lions in their den ’til morning light, an angel at Praise o’clock came there to keep their jaws shut tight.

Paul and Silas were imprisoned; their feet were placed in stocks; but they just sang with all their hearts, and made that prison rock!

If your prayer is for a miracle, but it seems to be “out of stock,” don’t give up, don’t give in–look at the time, it’s still Praise o’clock.

Surely when the way seems hard, there’s an answer to any “block,” for continually and forever, the correct time is Praise o’clock!

P. A. Oltrogge

“O come, let us sing for joy to the Lord, let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving. Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms. For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods, in whose hand are the depths of the earth, the peaks of the mountains are His also. The sea is His, for it was He who made it, and His hands formed the dry land. Come let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand.” Psalm 95:1-7 (NASB, Ryrie Study Bible)

“For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height–to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fulness of God.

“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus, to all generations, forever and ever. Amen” Ephesians 3:14:21 NKJV

“I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Psalm 27:13 NKJV

“Fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.” Isaiah 41:10 RSV

It’s in serious times or circumstances that it’s exactly right to praise God in expectation of His help. At the same time, we take our authority, through the blood and name of Jesus, over evil spirits that would hinder or harm in any circumstance, as we’re seated with Christ in the heavenly places, far above them. (Reference Ephesians 1:18-23 and 2:4-10)

“What time is it?” can also make us contemplate the time of Jesus’ return. We’re to occupy until He comes…

“And as they heard these things, he (Jesus) added and spake a parable, because he was nigh to Jerusalem, and because they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear. He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, ‘Occupy till I come.'” Luke 19:11-13 KJV

And on his encouraging post today, Dutch Sheets refers to “chronos,” the Greek word for general or chronological time, and “kairos,” strategic and opportune time. It can be read or viewed at:

http://www.givehim15.com 

From Adam to the Last Adam

Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, ‘Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.'” Genesis 2:15-17 NKJV

The first man, Adam, knew he should not partake from that tree, though its fruit was pleasant to the sight. Because of his doing so, God sent a Redeemer to be born as a man, “the last Adam,” to make things right.

Despite Adam and Eve’s sin of disobedience, God planned for their redemption from the fall. We can certainly see how He CAME THROUGH for them, for Jesus took sin’s penalty for them and for us all.

When we consider God’s love, amidst life’s battles, we must believe that God will COME THROUGH for us–with Him, we can’t lose. He’s no respecter of persons, but will be the caring orchestrator of our own breakthroughs.

Just as the devil contradicted what God had said when he tempted Eve to disobey…he may tell you that God can’t be fully trusted–that you can’t cast your cares on Him; but that’s an evil lie to be cast away….

Believe that God will always COME THROUGH for you…He sent, for us, a personal Savior, who defeated that foe.  As the scripture in Psalm 107:2 states, “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so!”

P. A. Oltrogge

“But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.” 1 Corinthians 15:20-22

“And so it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being.’  The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.”  1 Corinthians 15:45

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”  2 Corinthians 5:17

“Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, ‘Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons.'”  Acts 10:34  KJV

“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!  For His mercy endures forever.  Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the enemy, and gathered out of the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south.”  Psalm 107:1-3  

“Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:37-39

“Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous. Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more, so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 5:18-21

“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.” 2 Corinthians 2:14

“He (Abraham) staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.” Romans 4:20-22 KJV

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:16-17

“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:6-7

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7 

“And He spoke a parable to them, that men ought always to pray and not lose heart….” words of Jesus in Luke 18:1 

“And David said, ‘The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.’ And Saul said to David, ‘Go, and may the Lord be with you.’” 1 Samuel 17:37

“Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and He will give you into our hands.” 1 Samuel 17:47

The encouraging books,  Never Run at Your Giant with Your Mouth Shut, and The Spirit of Faith, by Mark Hankins, are available at http://www.markhankins.org

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; Be strong, and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27:13-14 (NASB, Ryrie Study Bible)

Scriptures: NKJV, or as noted.

Prayer for the U.S.A.

Important prayer needs are featured daily, but please see today’s post with prayer directives at:

http://www.ifapray.org

Father, as you have rescued us from individual concerns in our own lives, thank you for rescuing the United States of America from the evil with which it strives. Thank you for hearing us when we call–you are the Mighty God and Lord of all….

in Christ’s name,

Amen

“For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

“Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves.'” John 14:9-11

I believe in…

Father,

I believe in Your great love, which the Bible says that You have for me.  I believe in Your merciful love–You sent Your Son, Jesus, to set people free.

I believe in coming boldly to Your throne of grace when I pray.  I believe in what Jesus said–that answers are supported by the words I say.

I believe in using Your Word and faith-filled words to keep the force of faith from stopping.  I believe in being sure of answered prayer–I won’t be just window shopping.

I believe in Your faithfulness to keep Your Word–You never could lie.  I believe in persevering despite setbacks, knowing You’ve heard my heart’s cry.

And I believe in Your supernatural power and love, Father God, in any of life’s details, for I believe in Your Word, which says, “Love never fails!”

P. A. Oltrogge

“Love never fails….” from 1 Corinthians 13:8

“He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.” 1 John 4:8

“As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him.” Psalm 18:30 KJV

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:16-17

“So Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” Mark 11:22-24 (and 25-26, on forgiveness)

“And this is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.” 1 John 5:14, 15

“…it is impossible for God to lie…” (from Hebrews 6:18)

“God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?” Numbers 23:19

“Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:14-16

“The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry.” Psalm 34:15

‘…Be not afraid, only believe.” Mark 5:36 KJV

“The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord endures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.” Psalm 138:8

“And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13

If you’ve experienced some disappointments, leave with God the reason why. Never give up on the love of God, His Word, and faith in Him, the Most High….

“Then they remembered that God was their rock, And the Most High God their Redeemer.” Psalm 78:35

Be blessed at http://www.sandrakennedy.org

“Click on “Read/Articles” and “Watch/Featured Videos” (Of special note is “The Healing Collection Story”)

Coming to the aid of others…

While we look to Biblical examples, such as Daniel, (in today’s post), believing and trusting in God’s deliverance, we know that the Lord wants us to come to the aid of those we can possibly help who are in dire situations, such as war and disasters of any kind. At the bottom of this note is a reminder of just a few Christian ministries, which are doing that. And, of course, we continue to pray….

“Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’

“Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’” Matthew 25:34-40


http://www.jerusalemprayerteam.org
http://www.kcm.org
http://www.ob.org
http://www.samaritanspurse.org
http://www.sga.org

and others of which you’re aware….

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2

“The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” Psalm 18:2

Daniel in the Lions’ Den

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Psalm 46:1 KJV

…from the account in Daniel 6:

Due to Daniel’s outstanding capabilities, and out of concern that the king had given thought to putting him in charge over the entire kingdom, the other officials, knowing of Daniel’s reverence for God, concocted a plan to persuade the king to make an irrevocable decree—that for thirty days, whoever would pray to any god or man other than to the king, Darius, should be cast into a den of lions. After he had signed the decree and it was brought to his attention that Daniel continued in worship of his God, the king was greatly displeased with himself for having agreed to issue it; and he sought for a way to exempt Daniel. Finding no way to do that, the account continues:

“So the king gave the command, and they brought Daniel and cast him into the den of lions. But the king spoke, saying to Daniel, ‘Your God, whom you serve continually, He will deliver you.’” Daniel 6:16

The Bible tells of the faithfulness of Daniel, yet he was thrown into a lions’ den. But God sent His angel to foil that plot of some evil-intentioned men.

The angel shut the mouths of the lions, that normally would have killed–thereby saving Daniel’s life, which left his accusers…with a plan that was unfulfilled.

That the king had fallen for their words and created the outrageous decree, was a weak moment he quickly regretted, for he respected Daniel to a great degree.

Daniel remained steadfast in his worship of God–his prayers and praise were not diminished. We read that Daniel was delivered and prospered, and that his enemies met their own deaths before things were finished.

Today, there are those who seek to defeat our reverence for the one and only God, too. But we should recall the example of Daniel, and how strong faith in God brought him through.

Opponents of Christianity may make their strikes against us, the Bible, and Jesus’ name. But we, too, can continually worship the Lord, believing for His intervention, like Daniel of lions’ den fame.

Some Bible teachers have said of this account, that it points to Jesus, as well. For the plot against Him couldn’t thwart God’s plan, leaving only of Christ’s death to tell.

No, God raised His beloved Son up–to the place of victory and greatest acclaim. To this day, and forever, power and victory…are synonymous with Jesus’ Name.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Then King Darius wrote:

“To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth:

“Peace be multiplied to you.

“I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel,

“For He is the living God,
And steadfast forever;
His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed,
And His dominion shall endure to the end.
He delivers and rescues,
And He works signs and wonders
In heaven and on earth,
Who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.

“So this Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian.”

Daniel 6:25-28 NKJV

“‘No weapon that is formed against you will succeed; and every tongue that rises against you in judgment you will condemn. This [peace, righteousness, security, and triumph over opposition] is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and this is their vindication from Me,’ says the Lord.”

Isaiah 54:17 AMP

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” 

Philippians 2:5-11 NKJV

“For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I should not be a bond-servant of Christ.” 

Galatians 1:10 NASB

Psalm 91…I Will Say to/and of the Lord

If you heard Keith Moore at the Southwest Believers’ Convention this week, he emphasized, as Psalm 91 states, the benefit of our saying/agreeing with the Psalm…

Psalm 91:

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most high will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!”

For it is He who delivers you (me) from the snare of the trapper, and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you (me) with His pinions, and under His wings you (I) may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.

(You may want to continue to personalize it….)

You will not be afraid of the terror by night, or of the arrow that flies by day; Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness, or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.

A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not approach you. You will only look on with your eyes, and see the recompense of the wicked.

For you have made the Lord, my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place. No evil will befall you, nor will any plague come near your tent.

For He will give His angels charge concerning you, to guard you in all your ways. They will bear you up in their hands, lest you strike your foot against a stone.

You will tread upon the lion and cobra, the young lion and the serpent you will trample down, Because he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him securely on high, because he has known My name.

He will call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him, and honor him.

With a long life I will satisfy him, and let him behold My salvation.

_________________________________________

After we’ve come through the dark hours of night,
a pink sky in the morning is a magnificent sight.

In that very first light when the morning is breaking,
it uplifts and inspires—and is truly breathtaking.

Our Creator coats masterfully the sky with His paints,
and gives a song to the birds for the waking of His saints.

P. A. Oltrogge

“The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.” Psalm 19:1 NASB

“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life.” Psalm 143:8 NIV

Bless the Lord, O my soul

Psalm 103, NKJV

Bless the Lord, O my soul;

And all that is within me, bless His holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
Who forgives all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases,
Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
Who satisfies your mouth with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

The Lord executes righteousness
And justice for all who are oppressed.
He made known His ways to Moses,
His acts to the children of Israel.
The Lord is merciful and gracious,
Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.
He will not always strive with us,
Nor will He keep His anger forever.
10 He has not dealt with us according to our sins,
Nor punished us according to our iniquities.

11 For as the heavens are high above the earth,
So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;
12 As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
13 As a father pities his children,
So the Lord pities those who fear Him.
14 For He knows our frame;
He remembers that we are dust.

15 As for man, his days are like grass;
As a flower of the field, so he flourishes.
16 For the wind passes over it, and it is gone,
And its place remembers it no more.
17 But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting
On those who fear Him,
And His righteousness to children’s children,
18 To such as keep His covenant,
And to those who remember His commandments to do them.

19 The Lord has established His throne in heaven,
And His kingdom rules over all.

20 Bless the Lord, you His angels,
Who excel in strength, who do His word,
Heeding the voice of His word.
21 Bless the Lord, all you His hosts,
You ministers of His, who do His pleasure.
22 Bless the Lord, all His works,
In all places of His dominion.

Bless the Lord, O my soul!

Photos: Eagles, Pxfuel, Dandelion, Unsplash

“Origins” on UFO’s and Other Topics

If the subject of UFO’s is of interest to you, an “Origins” program regarding that, “The UFO Phenomenon,” with Ray Heiple and Gary Bates, can be explored at:

http://www.originstv.org 

It’s a presentation on the subject, with Biblical slants through scripture.

Also found there is a program which discusses the validity of the thought that man could have evolved from apes, “Monkey Business,” with Ray Heiple and Bruce Malone.

Still available for viewing are some broadcasts from the series, “Marvels of our Creator.”