On God’s Side

Psalm 118:7   (KJV)   7 The Lord taketh my part with them that help me: therefore shall I see my desire upon them that hate me.

No matter how hard our problems, no matter how numerous and how powerful our enemies are, we don’t fear. We believers no longer live for ourselves but for Him Who Psalm 118.7 - On God's Sidegreatly loves us and Who mercifully saved us. We’re for Him; He’s for us. He helps us and will never fail doing so.

We’re sincerely committed to living uprightly; we strive to walk faithfully before our Lord. We don’t selfishly pick and choose which part of His Word we would believe and obey. Loving our enemies is not an easy task, but we do. Given a choice, we would rather not have enemies in the first place. But we can’t deny the obvious reality and increasing presence of evil. No matter how much we treat everyone lovingly, there are those who see us and treat us as their enemies.

Because we choose God; because we abide by His ways; because we refuse to be a part of lawless and godless systems, we experience indifference, disapproval, hatred, and even violent attacks from lawless and godless people. That’s natural—not pleasant—but that’s the truth. What’s interesting though is how we see our loving desires and prayers come to fruition. They get saved; we see them undergo even drastic and unbelievable but genuine changes.

Praise God, He can make friends an families out of our enemies. The moment they turn away from their godless ways, place their full dependence on our precious Lord Jesus for their salvation, and bow their hearts in surrender to Him, they become children of God—our spiritual brothers and sisters. But you may ask, “What about those who decide to continue in their crooked ways: what about those who continue to attack you?” We’re neither worried not afraid. Our victorious Lord has made us overcomers—more than conquerors.

 

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Song-Filled Life

Psalm 59:16   (KJV)   16 But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning: for thou hast been my defence and refuge in the day of my trouble.

We have so many reasons to sing for;  imagine starting out our days with it.

Psalm 59.16 - Song-Filled LifeEvery new day we’re given is a demonstration of God’s bountiful mercy, amazing grace, and unfailing love.

We have many enemies—starting with our own flesh, then there’s the world, then there’s the devil.  All we need is one Ally.  For us believers, He’s already in us.

We face troubles, tests, trials, and temptations daily.  Many of them are beyond our power to solve and overcome.  Not for God.

God has always carried us through. He hasn’t failed us, and He won’t ever do.

Unshaken

Psalm 16:8   (KJV)   8 I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.

The Lord is in control of all things; that’s absolutely true; He isn’t at our beck and call. We don’t dictate to Him how to conduct Himself. We don’t tell Him where He should position Himself. To set the Lord always before us isn’t to give Him a mandate; it’s to psalm-16-8-unshakenconscientiously think about the continuing abiding presence of the Lord. He’s always before us—guiding: He’s always beside us—protecting; He’s with us; He’s in us.

In God, we’re always protected. It’s not a question of whether or not He can; it’s a given—He’s able. It’s Him we go to. He powerfully protects; He sufficiently provides. I admire godly people; I follow their examples as they follow Jesus; they know what they’re doing; they’re wise; I love watching them as they go about their Christian journey—often quietly—in fear of the Lord, without fear or men, as the Lord prospers the works of their hands and blesses their every step. They walk without paralyzing trepidation.

We’re not moved; we’re steadfast. Life-threatening dangers obviously abound; persecutions against believers are real—they’re increasing. The voices of those who dislike us are bold and loud. They call us intolerant and hateful as they cowardly attack us from behind—no longer just with words but physically—openly. But with all these, we rest in the fact that God allows only what we can bear. Death itself isn’t defeat for us. How can those who hate us truly hurt us? Often, God surprises us by raising people of influence, authority, and power who fights for us.

We won’t be coaxed into violence; we won’t give in to their call to unrighteousness—we won’t be intimidated into it. God alone is our choice. He is the right choice. I pray for people to realize this so they too can enjoy His precious presence—a presence that brings protection, provision, and peace.

Of Peace and God

Psalm 46.10

Psalm 46:10    (KJV)   10 Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.

God is God. He’s the one true all-loving, all-powerful, all-wise, all-present, just, holy, unchanging, righteous, immanent, and transcendent Creator and Father. People’s belief or unbelief doesn’t change this truth; it doesn’t change Him. It’s obvious: there are a lot more people in the world who don’t believe Him. But there will come a time when everyone will. Every person, every family, every nation will bow their knees before Him and honor Him for Who He really is. When people or nations rise up against Him, we’re not troubled; He is God, and that’s more than sufficient assurance.

People come and go; kingdoms rise and fall; God is still on His throne: He reigns, and He will reign forever. There are plenty of unbelievers. There are even people who don’t believe His existence but spend so much of their energy trying to fight Him. I pray for them; it’s not easy to kick against a rock.  Those who hate God or the concept of God also hate His followers. It’s understandable why our precious Lord Jesus told us that we are sent out like sheep among wolves. We get persecuted, and these persecutions have come in varying degrees. Some are tortured; some are killed. Amazingly, we can be still; we have peace; God is here; He is our very present help in times of trouble.

It’s because of this inner peace that we are people of peace. We can disagree yet love those we disagree with. God is love, and we who are born of God love everyone. We even love our enemies. Calamities of any form don’t scare us. Earthquakes may come; mountains may crumble; people may riot; nukes may fly–and we would rather not have them, but when they come, our peace doesn’t leave us. God is among us; He is our strength; He is our shield; He is our shelter in the time of storm and chaos. This doesn’t mean passivity. We prepare for potential dangers, but we have peace even in preparation. We live wisely. Our preparation covers the eternal facet. We live honorably before God and men; we love; we care; we do well; we walk righteously; we pursue peace.

So yes, troubles may come, and evil may increase, evil people may rise, but we are still; God is God.

Knowledgeable Zeal

Acts 14:19  (KJV)   19 And there came thither certain Jews from Antioch and Iconium, who persuaded the people, and having stoned Paul, drew him out of the city, supposing he had been dead.

They were stoned!!! This is crazy. Just prior to the arrival of the antagonists, the people were worshiping Paul and Barnabas as “gods.” Totally wrong. The apostles tried really hard to stop them, and explained to them Who the True God is; they were trying to educate them to truth, but they were persistent. They were full of zeal, but without knowledge. As quickly as them concluding that the apostles were divine, they also quickly changed their minds; persuasive words from the enemies caused them to join in and stone the apostle Paul. Forget about the amazing visible miracles, compelling words turned them away – just like that.

Zeal without knowledge is dangerous; it could lead to a lot of errors. It could harm us and hurt a lot of people. Zeal is good, but not without knowledge. Knowledge is good, but not without zeal. Both have to be present. We have to know the truth. And we have to have absolute truths as our non-negotiable foundation for our convictions. Without it, we will just be like directionless waves, tossed every which way by every wind of human opinion. And as we can easily notice, there’s a lot of opposing opinions. This is why we get a barrage of attacks. So many people today are very zealous – so passionate about their beliefs. They’re full convinced that they’re helping others – even saving them from dangerous people by presenting us as uneducated simpletons who are out to stall and hurt humanity’s progress. Why believe a three thousand year old archaic writings? For them it doesn’t make sense. They conclude that what we believe are irrelevant to our generation. They can’t explain why of course except for the fact that it contradicts their own beliefs, opinions and lifestyles. They’re passionate, but without any knowledge. Or, if they have knowledge, it’s not based on an authoritative source or foundation. We can expect continuing attacks. But let’s hold on. As the old saying goes “Truth will always prevail,” and may I add: In His time.

Dear God and Father, our one true God, the Truth, our Protector, may we live with zeal and knowledge. Please give us the wisdom to march forward unflinchingly with the Truth. Please give us the wisdom to be ready always to give an answer to every man who asks us why we believe what we believe. Please give us the courage to stand our unshakable foundation in the presence of a very antagonistic world. Please lead our steps to those whose hearts are ready to listen, understand, believe, persevere and grow with us.

Triumph of Good

Psalm 12:5  (KJV)   For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, saith the Lord; I will set him in safety from him that puffeth at him.

The context of chapter 12 seems to be the diminishing number and influence of the godly as well as the widespread influence and louder voice of the ungodly. The poor and the needy in this verse may refer to the godly who are now in poor standing and in a needy state because they’ve become the target of oppression, persecution and attacks. Evildoers now have the power – accepted, praised and are having their heyday, marching proudly with their vileness. They are punishing those who will oppose and stand in their way. They have forgotten that all the powers they’ve accumulated and achieved still stand matchless against the God they so arrogantly fight. God, in His perfect timing will arise and will defend, vindicate, and lift up those who remained faithfully His.

We see it everywhere; there’s no longer any regard for God in many sectors of our society. Believers who speak about God and their faith are quickly ridiculed, labelled as bigots, haters, and intolerant, and they are quickly silenced. Any attempt to share their faith is quickly described as “shoving in the throat,” – no matter how gently and lovingly it’s done, and any expressed disagreement to a popular public opinion is considered hate speech, discrimination or dangerous phobia. But hope for believers is never lost. An expansive and overpowering popularity of ungodliness never meant defeat for the cause of our Christ. God is in control and has never in any moment in time lost grip of that. He will arise, and we will see the day when everyone who has foolishly rose in battle against Him and His people will be quickly brought down.

Our sovereign, holy, and victorious God, we put our hope in You. May we not dread the millions of marching minions of Your already defeated enemy. Help us to remember that all the seeming triumphs of evildoers and its advocates are actually Your administration of judgment to them. Thank You Lord for the victories You’ve invited us to enjoy with You. In Jesus’ Name, amen.

Surviving Leadership Threats

Exodus 17:4  (KJV)    And Moses cried unto the Lord, saying, What shall I do unto this people? they be almost ready to stone me.

Moses was a clear-cut God-picked leader. God backed him up with super-sized miracles – a lot of them. He received a divine leadership validation extraordinaire. Despite all that, because of a new problem, the Israelites wanted to kill Him. I mean, forget all the nation-liberating, empire-humbling miracles; forget about the Nile turning to blood, hails, death of the firstborn of the “enemies,” parting of the Sea of Reeds and the complete annihilation of the charging Egyptian armies – all through the power of God. They didn’t have water to drink. Understandable. Without it, they’ll all eventually die. It was a real problem. But the greater real problem was that they forgot that God had been solving their way bigger than “we don’t have water to drink” problems. But that comes within the territory of God-called leaders or ministers. Moses had forgetful, ungrateful, hateful EGR (extra-grace required) few or many in the flock. The God-called, God-backed, God-empowered, God-validated leader had many of them – approximately 2 million men, plus women and children.

We need to accept it; we have to expect it; we will have people the Lord has placed under our care who will be pains in the neck, and head, and stomach – thorns in our flesh – if you may. The presence of complains, and criticisms, and even death-threats neither nullifies nor disproves God’s call in our lives as His laborers or leaders. We ought to be prepared for them. If there’s none like them, praise God; if there are, praise God. Instead of acting like them – forgetting God and all His wonderful works in and through our journey with Him, instead of retaliating to them – criticizing them and threatening to kill them as well, we ought to keep our eyes on God. He has always came through for us before; He will always come through for us.

Our Miracle-Working, Problem-Solving God, may we always find it a joy to serve you, never wavering that no matter what challenges we face – from situations and from people, You will enable us; You will equip us, because You have called us, in Jesus’ Name, amen.