If We Say We Have No Sin – John 1: 8-10

1 John 1:8-10

[8] If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
[9] If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
[10] If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (KJV)

When we admit our sin, the Lord is faithful and just, forgiving us and cleansing us from all unrighteousness.

If we deceive ourselves and say we have not sinned, that shows that we do not have Jesus working in us and we continue to live as sinners, which at our death keeps us out of eternal life.

Jesus has already done the first part for each and every person. He took all of our sins on the cross with him.

To activate the work he did for us, we must confess that Jesus is Lord and ask him to come into our lives and to be our Saviour.

It is very important to confess our sins as sin. It is wrong for us to say “if I have sin within me, please cleanse me”. That is not confessing we are sinners.

We need to admit we are sinners and feel the conviction of our sin and then confess those sins through Jesus. If we believe we are hiding from sin, it is better to say “Jesus, please search me and show me my sin so that I can confess it with my mouth”. Then confess all that he shows you.

Once we are forgiven through grace, we become closer to our Father, allowing us to pray directly to him, through the name of his son, Jesus Christ.

Heavenly Father

Thank you for sending your son Jesus to the earth. Because of his work on the cross, you can now offer me salvation. Without salvation, I would still be carrying all of my sin and with that sin, I would never be able to be in your presence.

May I always remember that I am a sinner. Regardless of what I think I have or have not done, there is sin within me, that must be confessed. There is the sin I know and the sin that I am unaware of. They both need to be confessed to cleanse me.

Lord, I come humbly before you and ask for forgiveness. I know that I have sinned and done, thought or said things that are not pleasing to you and I pray you will forgive and cleanse me. Search me Lord, bring to my mind the things I need to confess.

Thank you Lord for bringing those remembrance of sin to my mind. I now confess them with my mouth. 

Thank you Father, for cleansing me, through Christ Jesus, with your grace and love.  I now accept your forgiveness with thanks and gratitude.

Father I thank you that when I come before you with a regretful heart and confess my sin to you, that you forgive me. I am so very blessed Lord. Thank you.

In Jesus’ holy name I pray.

Amen

Hallelujah!

Have you asked Jesus to be Lord over your life? If that is something you would like to know more about click here for a link to Salvation.

He that Covers Sin – Proverbs 28:13

Proverbs 28:13

[13] He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy. (KJV)

If a sinner does not acknowledge that he has sin or tries to cover it up or even makes excuses for the sins, then he is keeping himself out of life eternal. By concealing his transgressions, he will not be forgiven.

Why do so many people (myself included) try at times, to hide their sins from God?

I realize that many times we are so ashamed of what we’ve done or figure our sins are just too big for God to forgive that we put off taking them before the Lord.

We can see in scripture that God drew all sorts of sinful people to himself. He forgave their sins and then used those very same people for wonderful ways to spread the Word of God.

King David, Saul/Paul and even the chosen disciples were not without fault. Some tried to hide their sin, but ended up miserable and feeling alone.

There is nowhere to hide from the Lord. He is the creator of this world, the people and everything in it. There is no where we can hide, that he doesn’t see. There is nothing we can think that he doesn’t know. He already knows what our thoughts are and what we have done in the past, present and yes, even in the future.

We all need turn to the Lord and confess our sins, no matter what we’ve done. He already has the knowledge of them so through true confession we can be freed from the shame and guilt.

Father in Heaven

Thank you that through my confession to Jesus, I am made righteous and I can come to you with my prayers. Without that cleansing, I could not come before you.

Lord Jesus, I come humbly to you and ask for forgiveness. I know that I have sinned and done, thought or said things that are not pleasing to you and I pray that you will show me mercy, and forgive and cleanse me. Search me Lord, bring to my mind the things I need to confess. 

Thank you Lord for hearing my confession and I now accept your forgiveness with thanks and gratitude.

Please go before me today Lord. Keep me on the straight and narrow path. Holy Spirit please convict me when I sin and remind me to confess, when I do. Thank you Lord for loving me so much that you are ready to show me grace and mercy even in my sin.

In the name of Christ Jesus I pray,

Amen

Are you carrying sin? Do you feel weighted down by the guilt of it? Go to the Salvation tab on the bar above.

One Mediator – 1 Timothy 2: 4-5

1 Timothy 2:

[4] Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

[5] For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;

Paul tells us that it is God’s desire that everyone should be saved, so he became flesh and sent his son Jesus Christ to be our Saviour.

Every person, during their lifetime, will hear the good news of Jesus Christ, learn of repentance and hear that having faith in Jesus will bring them salvation (the knowledge of the truth).

Paul tells us that another part of that knowledge of the truth is the importance of learning that Jesus is our one mediator.

At the moment of Jesus’ death on the cross, he became our high priest, giving us the privilege of praying and confessing our sins “directly to God”.  Jesus bridges the gap between us (God’s children) and Father God.

Jesus is the only one who can intercede, reconciling man to God. The Virgin Mary, saints, other gods, angels, man or idols cannot! If we believe that others can do what Jesus came to do, what then, was the point of Jesus’ horrendous crucifixion?

He alone became our bridge to God so it’s important that all prayers to God must go through our one and only mediator and that is Christ Jesus.

Our Father God is the only one who can know our real inner feelings. When he hears the true confessions of a believer, total forgiveness is given through Christ Jesus, grace and mercy; in that moment, without penalty or works.

When people, other gods, the Virgin Mary, saints, idols, angels or mere men hear our confessions, are they able to discern, in the same manner as our Father (with Jesus as our advocate) and know without doubt what is really in our hearts and the “degree of each sin”? No!

Since God has not authorized anyone (other than Christ) the job as advocate, it’s important for men to know that only Jesus can take our sins before God and that God is the one that can completely remove our sins.

However, on Judgement Day, there will be no-one that can save people from death. Those who have accepted Jesus into their lives have already gone before Jesus and are waiting for the New Jerusalem (Heaven) to arrive.

When the end of this world as we know it comes to a close,  Jesus becomes the judge. Those who come to judgement on the last day, no longer have Jesus acting as advocate for them.  They have already lost the chance of being saved to life eternal (Heaven).  They have previously made their decision and it was not to be saved through Christ Jesus.

Simply put, God is proceeding according to His plan. All die, but many will live eternally, by the knowledge of the truth through our one and only mediator, Christ Jesus.

Loving God,

Because Jesus is the one who hears my confessions, I can pray at any moment of the day and do not have to wait and confess to one particular person.

It’s important that I do not to keep the sin but to confess and turn away from it, as soon as I am made aware of the sin.

Once confessed, I can be open to receive the forgiveness, compassion, love and mercy that you alone can give me.

With that in mind…

Father God I come humbly before you and ask for forgiveness. I know that I have sinned and done, thought or said things that are not pleasing to you and I pray Lord you will cleanse me. I come before you now to confess my sins.

Thank you Father that I have laid all of my sins down, in the name of Jesus as my advocate. I consciously accept your forgiveness and ask that you would now lead and guide me in all I do.

Thank you Father for such wonderful gifts as Jesus and forgiveness. You are an awesome God and I give you all the praise and glory.

In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray.

Amen

If you have not accepted Jesus into your life, and want to, you can do so by going to the link “salvation”.

Hear My Cry, O Lord – Psalm 130:1-4

Psalm 130

[1] Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord.

[2] Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.

[3] If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?

[4] But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.

No one knows for sure who wrote this Psalm but some believe it was Nehemiah the priest and that it was probably written during captivity in Babylon. Some think it was a prayer for Israel; however most believe it was a prayer for himself. Regardless of the why, Nehemiah was praying earnestly to God.

The Psalmist realized that his sins were keeping him from God and more importantly that they would keep him separated from God right into eternity.

In the depth of his guilt of sin and with admission to God that he was a sinner, the Psalmist shows that he realizes that there was no one, except God, that could forgive sins. He’s crying out, hoping that God will hear his prayers.

After asking for God’s forgiveness, he stood in faith, acknowledging his belief that God heard him. Nehemiah knew that without God’s grace, no one could stand before God, without falling.

The closer he got to God, the more Nehemiah felt the fear of God:

(awe – reverence)

(afraid of sinning again).

As Nehemiah grew in fear and faith of gratitude, his love also grew. He learned that true forgiveness comes only from God.

Heavenly Father

Thank you that today, as a Christian, I am covered by the Holy Trinity.

Thank you Father that I have the Holy Spirit living in me and he convicts me when I have sinned.

Thank you that I live in a time where my sins are covered with the blood of Jesus.

Thank you Father that Jesus is my advocate, going between you and me and that in you, I am forgiven and loved by your grace.

The more I know you Lord, the deeper my faith becomes. Like Nehemiah, I put my faith and trust in you.

In the name of Christ, I pray

Amen

Are Sins Keeping You from God – Psalm 130: 3-4

PSALM 130: 3-4

3 If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?

4 But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.

No one knows for sure who wrote this Psalm but some believe it was Nehemiah the priest and that it was probably written during captivity in Babylon.

Some scholars/authors think it was a prayer for Israel and some believe it was for himself. During my meditation, I felt that Nehemiah was praying for himself, so that is the way I will go with my notes. Regardless; someone was praying earnestly to God.

The Psalmist realized that his sins were keeping him from God and more importantly that they would keep him separated from God right into eternity.

In his admission to God that he was a sinner and through his thought process, he appears to understand that with faith, and repentance the true God could take away his sin and so Nehemiah used that faith.

After asking for God’s forgiveness, he stood in that same faith, acknowledging his belief that God had heard him.

As he grew in that faith, his love grew also. The closer he got to God, the more he felt the fear (awe/respect/love) of God!

Heavenly Father

Thank you Father that you sent your Son and the Holy Spirit to help me live my life for you. Thank you Lord that I have the Holy Spirit living in me and he convicts me when I have sinned. Thank you Lord that Jesus is my advocate, going between you and me.

Thank you that I live in a time when my sins can be covered, with the blood of Jesus.

Thank you God that each and every day you lead me, guide me, accept my prayers when I ask for forgiveness and cleanse me totally. I am blessed.

In Jesus’ precious name, I pray,

AMEN

Annoyed vs Angery – Psalm 51

PSALM 51: 10-13

10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

11 Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.

The author (probably David) is feeling horrified at his own sins and pleads with God to cleanse him. David is asking for his heart to be washed and cleansed totally. He wants it to be as a completely new heart, one that has never been soiled with sin.  David asks for forgiveness and to be restored to the joy of his salvation.

Regardless of the reason, David has felt a deep conviction, has admitted his sins, has pleaded to be totally restored as a new man. David is begging God not to leave him without the joy. He has known what it was like to be in a close relationship with God and now what it is like not to be and he does not like it at all!

It interests me that David begins to thank God for the mercies he hopes to receive by pledging to change and is even thanking the Father for a renewal of heart. He tells the Lord that he will be an example to others and show how he has changed. He promises to guide others, in their sinful times, to go before God, the Father.

This wasn’t a bribe David was making but a sincere promise of what the new man would be able to accomplish, for (and with) the Lord.

I love the trust and faith that David had. Somewhere inside of him, he had faith that Father God would restore him and David did everything he could to gain that friendship back.

Through this scripture I’ve learned that God was  angry with David for two reasons.  First because David was sinning against God in some way.  The second reason for God’s anger was because David was supposed to set an example of how people were to live for God and apparently, the example David had been setting, wasn’t a good one.  

We are told that at salvation the new “man” gets rid of the “old” man.  And that is very true.  As soon as we ask the Lord into our lives, we change.  We may not feel different but we most definitely are. We have just become a  child of God.  We now have Jesus as our Saviour and his example to follow. We also now have the Holy Spirit as our helper, with his many attributes, including his guidance (and his convictions). 

What we are not necessarily told is that we don’t instantly become the new man totally, but that we begin a life long process to become a new creation, based on the image of God himself. 

However, if we continue to sin deliberately without confession, without repentance, without sorrow and without attempting to fight against the sin, then we have not changed and true salvation was never ours.  True salvation comes from within and if we choose not to change, then perhaps   we were never truly saved.  And if that’s the case, then one day we will face God’s judgement , without a saving grace.

Dear Father of Grace and Mercy,

This scripture caught me off guard. It’s strange but for some reason, I always think you as a loving, kind Father who sees my sins and is waiting patiently for me to ask for forgiveness.

I have never thought of you as a stern father. It never dawned on me that you were possibly angry with me every time I’ve sinned, no matter how insignificant I believed it to be.  

I haven’t worried about repeating the same sins over and over because I believed that I could confess them and be forgiven each time. I realize now that I am not coming to you with true repentance in my heart?  A sin is a sin! And sin will bring the downfall of man!

Biblical repentance is to change one’s mind that results in a change of action. As a Christian I must set an example, one that looks like I am a creation of you, the God Almighty.  Please Father, have the Holy Spirit continue to encourage me to change my ways? I pray I will listen and heed his guidance!

Lord, I am so thankful that you led me to this particular scripture today and opened my eyes. Help me Father to stay on the straight and narrow path. Help me to be a good example of Jesus in all ways, everyday.

Thank you Father that in the past, when I came before you, asking for forgiveness and mercy, that you, seeing what was deep inside my heart, forgave me. Even so, I pray Lord, that from this moment on, we will have a better relationship because I know now that I must change and grow and, with your help, I will.

Right now Lord, I ask your forgiveness.  As David prayed, now I will also pray.  Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.

I am so very blessed to be your child. Please Lord don’t ever let me get so far away from you that I would lose my joy.

I give you all the thanks and glory. In Jesus’ precious name.

Amen

 

Jesus is Concerned Over Every Lost Soul – Luke 15:1-32

Luke 15:1-32

1 Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.

2And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.

3And he spake this parable unto them, saying,

4What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?

5And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.

6And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

7I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

8Either what woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece, doth not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she find it?

9And when she hath found it, she calleth her friends and her neighbours together, saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which I had lost.

10Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.

11And he said, A certain man had two sons:

12And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.

13And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.

14And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.

15And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.

16And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.

17And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!

18I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,

19And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.

20And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

21And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.

22But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

23And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:

24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

25Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing.

26And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant.

27And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound.

28And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him.

29And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends:

30But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf.

31And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine.

32It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.

When I started studying this piece of scripture, I was immediately drawn into the whole chapter.

Although I would love to do an entire Bible study on Luke 15, I will contain myself! In today’s post I will be using just a few verses of the scripture, even though I have included Luke 15 in its entirety.

I encourage you to read all of Luke 15 and then meditate or study on it. There are so many precious nuggets just waiting to be found.

Luke tells us that although Jesus used parables many times to teach the disciples and/or the people, these particular parables were mostly for the benefit of the Pharisees.

They had come against Jesus for “hanging out” with sinners and even eating with them. The Pharisees believed the sinners needed to be shunned and they would never have anything to do with sinners, tax collectors and the like.

They had made accusations against Jesus and now Christ is going to retaliate by using 3 narratives to teach them. The first is the parable of the lost sheep. The second is the parable of the lost coin and the third is of the lost son. It’s not the stories themselves that my focus will be on, rather the message that appear in all three parables, the message of finding what was lost. Today I will focus mostly on verses 7, 10 and 32.

Luke 15:7 – The Lost Sheep

“I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.”

Luke 15:10 – The Lost Coin

“Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.”

Luke 15:32 – The Lost Son

“It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.”

All of these parables have one thing in common; something was lost and then found.

Jesus is accused of eating and being with sinners, so he attempts to teach the Pharisees with parables. Christ makes it clear that finding the ONE lost sheep was worth the shepherd leaving all ninety-nine to go and find that one that was lost. Then when the sheep is found, the shepherd calls out to his friends to rejoice with him (verse 6). Jesus ends this parable by showing that although there may be ninety-nine “believing” people, it’s the lost ONE that is important.

Jesus continues with the parable of the lost coin. A lady has ten coins and loses one of them. The woman searches diligently for that ONE that is lost. When she finds it, she calls her friends to rejoice with her (verse 9). Jesus ends this parable by showing that although the woman still had nine coins, it was very important to find that one lost ONE.

Jesus continues with the parable of the prodigal son. The younger son wants to take his inheritance and leave; so his father gives him the money and the son goes on his way. After he loses everything, he humbly returns to his father’s house. verse 24 “And they began to be merry.” Jesus ended this story by saying the son was dead and is now alive, lost but now found.

In all of these parables, we see the same message; something has been lost and then is found. Jesus was telling the Pharisees that to save sinners, they needed to be invested in them, not to shun or preach at them, but to befriend them.

Here’s what I found in studying…

The “lost” are not necessarily people who are lost to heaven due to sin. They can be Christians that have moved from the narrow path leading to God and eternal life to the wide path leading to eternal death. These “lost” could also be people who have not heard about Jesus or are confused and need help understanding.

The sheep represents the person who is falling away from faith. This tells us that God is concerned over EVERY lost soul.

The lost coin represents a believer, who has fallen away from the church. It’s the church’s duty to watch out for each other and to diligently search to save souls.

The last parable digs a little deeper. The elder brother represents the Jewish people who remained solid and hung onto God but became self-righteous, proud and eventually ended up far from God (like the Pharisees)

This parable shows that the father of the two sons, loved both equally. In the same way, God loves the Jews and the Gentiles equally.

Once humbled, the father took his “lost” son back immediately, just as if nothing had ever happened. God will also take back his humbled “lost” children as if they never left.

Jesus was attempting to get the point across to the Pharisees and others that anyone who is lost or those who have moved away from God are just as important as those who love and believe in God (and after the crucifixion, believed in Jesus).

God doesn’t have to take us back! Nor does he have to find the lost, save people or forgive our sins. He does it because he wants to and because he loves us so much.

Unfortunately, most of the Pharisee’s didn’t listen or take advantage of Jesus’ warnings to change their ways.

The job God has given believers today, is to find the lost (regardless of who they are or what they’ve done) and tell them about Jesus. That may even mean “hanging out”, or perhaps sharing a meal with sinners.

We need to keep in mind that we are all sinners and not one person today or throughout all of history deserves to be saved by Jesus. However God loves all of us and does not want to see, even one person lost.

Father God

I ask you Lord, to place the lost along my path, those you know I can help. Guide me and give me the words that would touch their hearts and open their eyes to you or to hear your call.

Help me to realize that not every person I talk to wants to be rescued. Help me also to remember that “I” am not the one to save people, you do that. My job is to pray and seek the lost and then show them to the way to be live once found. Unfortunately, not all will accept that offer.

I will praise and glorify your name each and every day. I will continually be on the watch for the lost and tell them of the good news of Jesus Christ.

I will continue to pray for those who do not know you, praying they will hear your call..

Thank you Father for loving each and every person in this world and that every one of them have exactly the same option of finding Christ and receiving salvation, as I did.

In the name of Jesus Christ, our Saviour, I pray.

Amen

Search Me O God – Psalm 139: 23-24

Psalm 139: 23-24

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:

24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

David is talking to God. He realizes that within himself and possibly even hidden from himself, are sins. David must feel strongly that there is something within him that is not of God.

He is asking the Lord to look into his heart, to test him, to peer into David’s deepest thoughts and to examine him in whatever way God wants to.

David wants to make sure that he is totally open to the Father and that there is nothing hidden that would stop David from an eternal life with God (the Father, Son and Holy Spirit).

God – our Shophet (pronunciation: sho-PHAIT)

You are the One whose righteousness demands perfect justice.  You are also the one who has provided a way for us to be acquitted through Jesus. 

I know Lord, that sometimes I may do, say or think things that are not pleasing to you. Sometimes I wonder if they are my thoughts or if I have unknowingly listened to the enemy whispering in my ear. Regardless, there are times when I try to justify the action or thoughts, instead of coming to you in repentance.

I want a closer relationship with you and if I am carrying sin, it can’t happen. Help me Father to always be on the lookout for pitfalls and prepare me to jump over them. I know Lord there will be times when I will fall, so please help me be alert at all times. When I do sin, let me feel the conviction of it and confess immediately. Don’t let me bury any wickedness away.

Oh Father, I ask for forgiveness. As you did for David, please Lord, search me, inside and out and find anything that it not pleasing to you. Examine me and reveal all of my iniquities, especially the ones I call “justified sins” so that I can confess them with my mouth and be cleansed by you.   Lord, please find any and all wickedness that is within me and reveal it to me right now .

I now confess, in the name of Jesus, the sins that I’ve buried or justified in some way.

I come before you Lord humbled and with thanks that you are a loving Father that will not hold these iniquities against me but will forgive me, in the name of Jesus. I now consciously accept your forgiveness and grace with thanks.

Father please help me to stay strong in you from this day forward. Thank you that I am your child and that You will lead me in the way everlasting. I am looking forward to spending eternity with you. I am so truly blessed.

Maranatha!

In the name of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus, I pray.

Amen

Draw Near to God – James 4: 6-10

James 4:6-10

[6] But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
[7] Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
[8] Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.
[9] Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.
[10] Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

God gives grace – If we are willing to submit to God and allow him to take the lead, we are blessed with grace and in that grace we are able to give ourselves over to God. However, He will not move in the people who believe it’s all about them (the proud).

Resist the devil – As soon as the natural person truly gives their self over to God, they become his child. One of the wonderful gifts we receive from him is the authority to resist the devil. As strong as Satan is, he cannot overcome a Christian’s given authority and will flee at the name of Jesus.

Draw nigh to God – James is telling the people they must stay close to God. The closer they are to him, the closer he will be to them. The same principles apply for us today. We must make a conscious effort to stay close to God, following his lead. The flip side is that when the enemy is in control, we are not living the life God intended for us.

Cleanse your hands – Because of Adam’s downfall in the Garden of Eden, we live in a world of sin. Therefore, it is very important for us to go before God; in the name of Jesus, confess and wash our hands of sin, and then receive God’s grace, his mercy and forgiveness.

Purify – We need our hearts to be purified. So many times we will only clean what we or others see. However it is very important to ask for God to search us, inside and out, to find whatever sins we may be hiding – possibly even from ourselves. Then we can take them before God, confess the sins and be purified through Jesus.

Double-minded – God has given us the right to make our own choices in the way that we live. However, it’s important for us to remember that we cannot serve two masters; it’s either the enemy’s we serve or God, our heavenly Father.

Be afflicted – Yes; a person living without the Lord may be enjoying life to the fullest, but there are eternal consequences. Without God’s presence, the worldly things that bring us joy, laughter and happiness are short lived and useless. James is telling us that it’s very important to let go of the worldly way of living and turn to God.

James is warning us that as we get closer to God, our sins will become more evident and we will feel convicted. This is a good thing! The need to lament, mourn, and weep will come upon us and we will feel the heaviness of the sin and will be crying out to God, to be rid of it.

Humble yourselves – As we go before God humbly, asking and receiving forgiveness, our Loving Father will wipe away our sins and then he will lift us up, giving us genuine love and happiness for eternity.

Do you long to know Jesus? Go to salvation on the main page.

Yahweh Roi (Pronunciation:  yah-WEH row-EE)

The Lord is my Shepherd who watches over me night and day and leading me along the path of righteousness.

Thank you Lord, that when you called to me, I accepted your invitation and drew close to you. I then confessed my sins and made you the Lord and Ruler of my life. I have never looked back! The life I enjoy today with you by my side is more than I ever imagined. In you I have found peace, love, and joy.

Thank you Father for this message from James. As I studied it this week, it was a reminder for me to always stay close to you.

Search my heart Lord for those sins that could be deeply hidden inside me. Bring them to my mind so that I can confess with my mouth and have my heart purified.

The enemy is always standing right beside me, urging me to fall away from you, tempting me with all sorts of gifts and lies. Help me Lord to stay strong in Jesus, and resist the enemy.

If I am not living my life with you as my central authority, then I have no chance at resisting the devil. Please stay close to me and have the Holy Spirit convict me the moment I may drift towards the enemy’s territory.

I know Lord that as a Christian, my life will still be full of ups and downs. I understand that I am not immune to bad things happening in my life. However, I do know that as your child, you will always be at my side; leading, helping and comforting me. Regardless of what is going on around me, help me to stand strong in you, covered by the Armour of God.

Thank you Father for your love, you grace, your mercy, and for all the wonderful gifts that I receive from you. Thank you for sending your son Jesus and the Holy Spirit to earth to help us be the best we can be.

May I always consciously and purposely choose you to lead my life.

For the glory to God and in the holy name of Christ, I pray.

Amen

Are Your Prayers Answered? – Mark 11: 25-26


Mark 11:25-26

25 And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.
26 But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.

This scripture is not saying that whatever we pray for we will receive. It is also not saying that if our faith is strong enough, we will receive what we are asking for.

It is saying that we are to believe with faith, that God has heard our prayers and that He will answer in a way that is best for us. The answers of our prayers are not necessarily given in the way we envisioned them being answered.

It is our job to pray in faith, and then stand in faith (stay strong, believe that God has heard our prayers) knowing that our Father knows what is best for us in all circumstances.

Forgiveness! How are we at forgiving others? Do we forgive on the outside but have burning bitterness inside our hearts? How can we expect God to forgive us if we are holding grudges/anger/hatred/unforgiveness against others?

We need to make things right and truly forgive those we hold anger over. In our forgiveness of others, our Father will then forgive us our trespasses.

If we are holding on and can’t seem to let the anger go, ask the Lord for help. He is very willing to lead us to the peace of forgiveness. If for some reason we choose not to forgive the person, (regardless of what the anger is about) then God will not forgive us.

Divine Father

I understand that I need to forgive those I hold anger towards and that I cannot have bitterness and unforgiveness in my heart.

I understand a big part of my prayers being answered depends on whether I am justified (cleansed). I receive that cleansing by true repentance and asking you for forgiveness and mercy.

Thank you Jesus for coming to stand for me and for being an intercessor between myself and God. Help me to be strong, in you. Help me to realize immediately if I start to hold bitterness inside. It is much easier to forgive right away than to allow it to simmer inside, eventually getting to a boiling point.

I know my prayers are effectual when I’ve been forgiven by you Father and have received your mercy.

I ask you to show me the situations or people that I am refusing to let go. Help me Lord to erase all anger, bitterness, hatred that I am holding over a situation or a person. I know Father sometimes bitterness is buried so deep that I am no longer even aware that it’s there. Please search me and bring it all to my remembrance so that I may deal with it (with your help) and be rid of it once and for all.

       Right now, I ask you Father for forgiveness for ….

Thank you Lord for all you do for me and for giving me the knowledge of this very important verse.

In the name of Jesus, I pray.

Amen

Side note: The scripture says “when we stand praying”…one author points out that it doesn’t matter whether we stand, sit, kneel or whatever method we choose to pray, as long as the prayer is given with true faith in God, he hears us.