Calling things that be not as though they were….

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

How often we speak only of what we see, instead of the “good outcome” that we really mean.

“The mouth of the upright will deliver them” isn’t merely a Proverb that sounds good…

Jesus gave instruction on speaking to the “mountain,” so He surely was advocating that we should.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations), before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were. Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, so shall thy seed be.” Romans 4:16-18 KJV

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good report. Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” Hebrews 11:1-3 KJV

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7

“But having the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, ‘I believed, therefore I spoke,’ we also believe, therefore also we speak.” 2 Corinthians 4:13

“…but the mouth of the upright will deliver them.” Proverbs 12:6 (Proverbs 10:11; Proverbs 12:14; Proverbs 12:18; Proverbs 13:3; Proverbs 15:4; Proverbs 18:20-21; Proverbs 21:23 and others)

“And Jesus answering saith unto them, ‘Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass, he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.’” Mark 11:22-24 KJV

“And Jesus said to the centurion, ‘Go your way; let it be done to you as you have believed.’ And the servant was healed that very hour.” Matthew 8:13 (from the account in Matthew 8:5-13)

Jesus said, “Have faith in God….” as the following scripture from Isaiah also speaks of the surety of God and His Word:

“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there without watering the earth, and making it bear and sprout, and furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; so shall My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:10-11

More on this at http://www.cappsministries.com with books, such as “Changing the Seen and Shaping the Unseen” or the booklet, “Calling Things That are Not.”

For a daily schedule of speakers at the Southwest Believers’ Convention, go to: http://www.kcm.org/swbc

“For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” 1 John 5:4 KJV

“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10:17 KJV

May all God’s children persevere, continuing in His Word…. God bless!

Photo/Unsplash

Southwest Believers’ Convention

“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.”  John 3:16 (NKJV)

“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.”   John 1:12 (KJV)

“Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God….” 1 John 3:1 (KJV)

“So Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Have faith in God.’” Mark 11:22

“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”
Psalm 119:105 (KJV)

You can view this week’s encouraging messages from Fort Worth, Texas, Kenneth Copeland Ministries, at www,govictory.com or the Victory Channel is also on DIRECTV, Channel 366, DISH, Channel 265, Apple TV 4th Generation, Amazon fireTV, and ROKU.

(August 2-7)

Rains can’t endure; God’s mercies are sure…

After the rain, the sun will come out…
Of the Lord’s faithfulness, we must not doubt.

Rain is most often a life-giving thing…
May the “rains” of life be faith-strengthening.

P. A. Oltrogge

“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.”

Psalm 103:1-5

Psalm 25:6; Psalm 40:11; Psalm 89:1;
Psalm 107; Psalm 136:1-26; Psalm 145:9

“But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:  The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness.”   Lamentations 3:21-23 RSV

“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….”  Psalm 107:1-2

“Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!  For He satisfies the longing soul, and fills the hungry soul with goodness.”  Psalm 107:8-9

“Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.” James 1:2-3 NASB

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

Jesus said: “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.” 
…from Matthew 7:24-29

(Scriptures NKJV, or as noted)

Our Father of Forgiveness

A subject that Jesus taught, and that He made so perfectly clear,
was the need to forgive others—God’s standard, to which we’re to adhere.

By word and by His example, especially on the cross, this was displayed
when forgiveness, of even His enemies, was the kindness for which Jesus prayed.

Jesus had warned that if we ever felt this was something too difficult to do,
then, He said, of our trespasses, that “neither will your Father in heaven forgive you.”

Obviously, our merciful God has forgiveness at the very core of His heart.
If there is someone you haven’t forgiven, therefore, forgive, letting withholding of Christian love depart.

Then, you’ll be confident, with Christ as your Savior, when you go to enter heaven…that you’ve forgiven others, along your life’s journey, as Jesus said, even “seventy times seven.”

P. A. Oltrogge

“But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.” Mark 11:26

“Then Peter came to Him and said, ‘Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him, up to seven times?’ Jesus said to him, ‘I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.’” Matthew 18:21-22

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” Matthew 3:43-45

“Then Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.’” Luke 23:34 KJV

On the need to forgive ourselves at times: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

“The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.” Psalm 103:8

“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14

Come, you blessed of My Father

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” John 13:34

Did you learn to love (as I’ve loved you) in your daily walk;
Or was it not really genuine, but, instead, merely talk?

That’s an outline of a question Jesus will ask one day
In separating His sheep and removing the goats away.

If you took care of others, even “one of the least of these,”
He’ll say you did it to Him, and will have found that to please.

Kindnesses done for others in His Name, with sincerity of heart,
Are implied to be noted by Jesus, as if on a heavenly chart.

The righteous will ask, “When did we do these things for You?”
While the unrighteous will insist that they did them, too.

Faith in Jesus saves us through His service, highest of all;
But we serve Him, out of love…it’s our heavenly call.

“Works” left undone or devoid of Him won’t carry any weight;
Make Jesus your Savior and Shepherd before finding it’s too late.

P. A. Oltrogge

“All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. 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.’

“Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: for I was hungry and you game Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’

“Then they also will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You? Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

Matthew 25:32-46

Photo by Karen Roe/Flickr
See archived post for direct link.

The Sea of Galilee

also called Kinnereth, Lake of Gennesaret, and Sea of or Lake Tiberias

I’ve not ever visited the Holy Land of Israel or viewed Galilee’s beautiful sea,
but I can visualize the prominence of its waters in Jesus’ life and ministry.

Peter, Andrew, James, and John made their living there–then suddenly were called
to follow the Messiah, after which they experienced some miraculous catches hauled.

Near to its shores, five thousand men, and women and children, were divinely fed
through a little boy’s blessed lunch of just two fish and only five loaves of bread.

After leaving Nazareth, Jesus settled in Capernaum, which lies beside its waters;
and Mary, of Magdala, a seaside town, became one of God’s beloved daughters.

We know that Jesus walked on its waves; and Peter did, too, to some degree.
Another time, the disciples called on Jesus to save them when it became a raging sea.

Jesus told His disciples to cross over it at times in following His Father’s direction.
And from a mountain above it, He shared The Beatitudes–a major spiritual reflection.

You may not have seen the Sea of Galilee, that Jesus and the disciples traveled along;
but you can experience the Spirit’s “living water,” which is God’s gift to make us strong.

P. A. Oltrogge

Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.’” But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified. John 7:37-39

Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.
John 16:7 KJV

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth. Acts 1:8 and all of Acts 2

When Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who were listening to the message. And all the circumcised believers who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out upon the Gentiles also. Acts 10:44-45

So I say to you, ask and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him! Luke 11:9-13

Excellent books on the Holy Spirit: “Baptism in the Holy Spirit” and “How You Can Be Led by the Spirit of God” (book or CD) by Kenneth E. Hagin at http://www.rhema.org under Bookstore.

Also: “The Holy Spirit is a Genius” by Mark Hankins at http://www.markhankins.org and other of his books on the Holy Spirit (and other topics).

Photo/Unsplash

The day that Jesus was crucified, as Simon of Cyrene might have related it…

Like other people, I’d heard some stories about the man named Jesus.
He’d done unheard-of miracles and had lived a life that was upright and clean.

So I never thought I’d arrive in Jerusalem at such a terrible time,
of seeing Him being brutally led to His own crucifixion…that was the scene.

It seemed incomprehensible that His acts of compassion
were being “rewarded” with this punishment to which He was going.

I could see that He was becoming too weak to bear the heavy cross;
He’d obviously been scourged, and blood from the stripes was flowing.

Suddenly, I was pressed into service by some of the Roman soldiers.
I was ordered to carry His cross, in His stead, as His strength was depleted.

Had He done something criminal that I hadn’t heard of in His recent past?
I didn’t know, but the mocking and reviling were being repeated.

Of course, I didn’t appreciate being singled out for such a despicable task.
It seemed obvious to me that I’d been in the wrong place at the wrong time.

But something in the eyes of this Jesus, who staggered beside me,
reflected kindness; and I sensed something noble or majestic—nothing of crime.

After reaching the destination, I couldn’t bear to watch the proceedings.
If He’d been wrongly accused, there was nothing I could have done to stop the event.

So I left; but, later, darkness came over the land, and an earthquake caused tombs to open. Some people were reported as having been raised from the dead after the temple curtain was rent.

After all that had happened, a centurion and other guards declared that, truly, Jesus was the Son of God. Perhaps my unchosen role in this—being singled out—had, instead, been a divine appointment.

A great many people were recipients of Jesus’ ministry, and believed that He was who He said He was. That day lives large in my memory; and His disciples are saying that His Name is God’s healing and saving ointment.

P. A. Oltrogge

One of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, regarding a man made well through the name of Jesus, spoke to the rulers, elders, and scribes gathered in Jerusalem:

“…let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by this name this man stands here before you in good health. He is the stone which was rejected by you, the builders, but which became the chief corner stone. And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”

Acts 4:10-12 NASB

Through Every New Bloom

Through the beauty of a flower, we see our great God’s creative heart.
Or the birth of a baby is an expression of another awesome part
of His endless creativity and His giving to us of others to love…
Every good and perfect gift comes down from the Father of lights above.

Praise and thanks to our beautiful Savior, Jesus, the King of Creation…
We trust You, placing our hand in Your loving hand through every situation.
Help us to share Your love with people who are near to us or far…
telling them that You’re the Lord of all, the Bright and Morning Star.

P. A. Oltrogge

“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.” Revelation 22:16 NKJV

“God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high….” Hebrews 1:1-3 NKJV

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” James 1:17 NKJV

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 KJV

“The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ—He is Lord of all—” Acts 10:36 NKJV

“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 NKJV

Wonderful true account:
http://www.ilivedonparkerave.com

Photos/Unsplash

In Everything Give Thanks

When it looks to you, at times, like there’s simply no way out,
let thanking God, the Father, be your sure and chosen route.

When it seems that pressing problems have no known solution,
let thanking the Lord turn any worries into a grace revolution.

Paul and Silas were imprisoned but raised their praises high–
then found they were delivered, with praise their only cry.

When the way seems very foggy and you’re tempted to despair,
just know, though you can’t yet see it, the victory is there.

A great principle of the Bible is to walk by faith and not by sight–
so thank God for His presence when it’s dark and you need His light.

Like a pilot relies on instruments through weather good or bad–
let thankfulness be the “instrument” with which your life is clad.

P. A. Oltrogge

Acts 16:23-40:
“But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns of praise to God, and the prisoners were listening to them; and suddenly there came a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison house were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s chains were unfastened.” (25-26)

“But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” Colossians 3:14-17 NKJV

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7 NKJV and Hebrews 11:1

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

“But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
1 Corinthians 15:57

Seek First God’s Kingdom and His Righteousness

“Seek the Lord and His strength; seek His face continually.”

1 Chronicles 16:11 NASB

“Seek the Lord while He may be found;
Call upon Him while He is near.
Let the wicked abandon his way,
And the unrighteous person his thoughts;
And let him return to the Lord,
And He will have compassion on him,
And to our God,
For He will abundantly pardon.” Isaiah 55:6-7

Seek the Lord while He may be found…
In doing so, your life will be crowned
with God’s lovingkindness, for God is love;
every good and perfect gift comes down from Him above.

a bit of the poetic by P. A. Oltrogge

“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.” 1 John 4:7-9

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” James 1:17

“I am the rose of Sharon, the lily of the valleys.”

Song of Solomon 2:1 NASB

“For this reason I say to you, do not be anxious for your life, as to what you shall eat, or what you shall drink, nor for your body, as to what you shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body than clothing?

“Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And which of you by being anxious, can add a single cubit to his life’s span? And why are you anxious about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory did not clothe himself like one of these.

“But if God so arrays the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more do so for you, O men of little faith? Do not be anxious then, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink’ or ‘With what shall we clothe ourselves?’ For all these things the Gentiles eagerly seek; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
Words of Jesus in Matthew 6:25-34