Blog

God Almighty

And God spoke to Moses and said to him: "I am the LORD. I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty, but by My name LORD I was not known to them.” Exodus 6:2-3

How many times we forget that God is in control. Sometimes God needs to remind us of that fact. There is a danger in forgetting He is the Lord! Whenever mankind forgets who God is, he is prone to exalt either himself or other men. 

Sometimes we see our problems as great mountains, so formidable and large. We think, “I will never overcome a problem like this, it’s too big.” Does that describe how you feel today? You have been climbing for so long and never seem to reach the top; it’s just too big.

In Romans 1:20-21 we read, “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.”

Speaking of God’s creation, in space, there is a pillar of gas and dust called the Cone Nebula. The Hubble Telescope took a picture that shows the upper 2.5 light-years of the nebula, a height that equals 23 million round-trips to the moon.

You and I are used to measuring distances in inches, feet or miles but when astronomers use their telescopes to look at stars, things are different. The distances are gigantic. For example, the closest star to Earth (besides our sun) is something like 24 trillion miles away. That's the closest star.

When you start talking about those kinds of distances, a mile or kilometer just isn't a practical unit to use because the numbers get too big. So they measure really long distances in Light Years. A light year is the distance that light can travel in a year, and the speed of light is 186,000 miles per second, so a light year is 5,865,696,000,000 miles long. That's a long way! Now, if the Cone Nebula is 2.5 light years across, then 2.5 x 5,865,696,000,000 = 14,664,240,000,000 miles wide.

You could travel for a whole year at the speed of light and not even be half way across the Cone Nebula. Now, that’s only one formation out in space among billions!

Check this out - God Almighty (El Shaddai in Hebrew) has created all things, and that mountain your are facing today seems so small to the Lord. Paul said in Colossians 1:16-17 “For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.”

So next time you think that mountain is just too big, think of the Cone Nebula, so vast and big, and remember that the Lord God Almighty spoke it into existence!

Now, if Jesus is your Lord and Savior, there is nothing in your life He cannot overcome. He will help you and fight for you, but He must be the Lord of your life.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Bob

 

 

 

The Object of Your Love

“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

People become oblivious to their present circumstances and their difficulties when they are in love.  They become fixated on the object of their love.  I remember the first time I met my wife, Lori.  It was 1979 and I was 19 years old.  I had been stood up that night for a date so I went to a bible study led by my brother-in-law, Bill. 

Disgusted with the dating scene, I told God I would be OK if I were single for the rest of my life, the old monastery prayer.   I went to the bible study and sat down on the couch next to my brother Mark, trying to make the usual awkward conversation about why I wasn’t on my date, when Lori walked in the room and sat down. I immediately began to pray, revoking the monastery thing and all that stuff about being single!

Our first date was several games of racquetball, and she won every game.  She was very competitive at everything we did together and I loved it!  She was a spit-fire, and that is what I like about her to this day. Since the first time I saw my wife, I have never been the same.  I think she is so beautiful and intriguing.  As I look back to that night in Garden Grove, California and after 35 years of marriage, I am still discovering new things about her.  I want to spend all my free time just being with the one I love. 

Who is the object of your love? This is an important question because the object of your love will receive all of your attention.  You will sacrifice for them, stay up late waiting for them, rise early to meet them, and find all kinds of ways to spend time with them.  You will talk, embrace, and laugh with them.

Perhaps the object of your love is not another person, but yourself!  After all, you have never met anyone like you! Maybe the object of your love is a thing like a career, sports, a house, or boat.

When writing about love, Paul turns our attention towards God in Romans 8:28 which says  “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” What a beautiful and rich promise from God’s word! I hope you have memorized this promise.  Put it on the refrigerator or on the bathroom mirror. God says “all things work together for good” not only one thing, a few things or most things but all things!

From this verse, every Christian can be assured of God’s love and care for them.  God has a plan for your life!  Before the earth was formed and life appeared, and before the seas pounded the shore God had a plan for you and for me. 

Yes, we will suffer in this present world.  We may get sick, or wounded.  We may get aches and pains, we might have financial trouble, or things might worry us.  We will see loved ones suffer, but God is using everything now in your life and in my life for good.

As you look back over the road you have traveled, as you look forward beyond today to the future, what is the object of your love?  Do you love God? Is He the One you think about?  Are you discovering new things about Him?  Is He the One you want to spend time with? 

The object of your love will receive all of your attention.  Just stay close to the Lord!  He will never leave you or forsake you.  He has an awesome plan for your life.  

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Bob

 

 

Saved by Faith

“For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit.”. 1 Peter 3:18

Given the choice to keep God’s commandments or to live life apart from God, mankind has chosen to disobey God.  We have turned our backs on him. The result is separation from God. All human beings have sinned and are in the same sinking boat, unable to save themselves. In Romans 3:23, we learn “for all have sinned and fall short of the glofy of God.”  But mankind needs to know that there is a God who loves them and wants to save them and forgive them of their past mistakes and sins. Even the most ungodly person can be washed pure and clean in the blood of the Lamb.

Have you noticed there are many people with a shady past mentioned in the bible? Take for example, Rehab, who was a Canaanite prostitute, first mentioned in the Book of Joshua. Rehab risked her life in order to hide and protect Joshua’s spies, proving that she identified with God’s people and not her pagan culture. Although Rehab was a sinner, lost in immorality, she realized that God was Lord of all. As a result, God saved Rehab from the destruction of her city.

It is fascinating to note that Rehab is later mentioned in the Book of Matthew as part of the Genealogy of Joseph, the stepfather of Jesus. In Hebrews 11:31, it says that Rehab was saved by her faith. As damaged as Rehab was, it shows us that God isn’t reluctant to adopt us as His own children even if we have a tainted past.

When Christ died voluntarily on the cross, he died in our place. He paid the penalty and the judgment for our sin so we could be forgiven. He died as our substitute. In Jesus, God the Father is saying “I want you to know that I love you.” Jesus Christ is the only adequate bridge to cross the gulf between God and man. Christ has made it possible to cross over to God's side but it is not automatic. We need to take action that demonstrates our faith in what Christ has done. In prayer, we need to acknowledge to God our sinfulness, ask his forgiveness because of what Christ has done and ask Christ to take charge of our lives.

Faith in Jesus Christ saves the sinner from destruction and provides eternal life.  God demonstrated His love for us by sending Jesus to die on the cross for our sin.  But if we don’t accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we are lost.  Believing in Christ means trust and commitment. We need to accept the fact that he has died in our place, and let him become the person who controls our life. Eternal life in Christ is a gift from God. A gift can be free, but unless we reach out and take it, it is not ours. The right response is to accept and receive it by faith.

Is Jesus your Lord and Savior today? If not, what is holding you back from acknowledging your sinfulness, asking His forgiveness, making changes in your life?

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Bob

 


Tender Hearted

“Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18

Of the seven things that God hates the most, pride is listed among them. “God isn’t watching,” prideful people say to themselves in Psalm 10:11 “he’ll never know!”  Pride tricks us into thinking we can live independently of God.

There is an incompatibility between blind arrogance and the presence of God in our heart. The proud person depends on himself rather than on God. This causes God’s guiding influences to leave his life. When God’s presence is welcome, there is no room for pride, because he makes us aware of our true self. Our heart is tender towards things of God.

What happens to the Scriptures that reach your mind and heart? Do the seeds of truth take root and grow, or do they bounce off because your heart is hard towards the Lord?  If your heart is broken because of your own sin, or the condition of the fallen world around you, chances are the Word will reach good soil and grow. Keep a tender heart towards God and stay humble before Him and others.

Listen for God’s voice. Through the Book of Deuteronomy, a part of God’s word to Moses, he heard what God desired of His people. People always ask me, “Ok, so you say God speaks to His people, but I have never heard His voice.” To this I say, while there are times when the Lord chooses to speak directly to His people, for me, almost always, it’s when I am reading the Bible, meditating on the Scriptures, having my devotion with my wife, Lori, that I hear the voice of the Lord. That’s how he understood God’s will.

If you are truly brokenhearted with the way the world is today, it will motivate you to preach the gospel, to tell others about Jesus, to share your hope and faith with them. I also believe we should live our lives as God’s people with the expectation that God is going to guide us and lead us. If you pray “Lord, show me if I should take the job, marry that girl or buy that house,” why not expect Him to respond? Romans 8:14 says “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.”

I believe the Lord is coming back soon, just like He promised. He told the church to watch and be ready, because we won’t know ahead of time when He will come. But when He does, we will go to be with Him in Heaven, and we won’t be around the world’s calamity of school shootings, terrorism, cancer, and child trafficking. Find your rest in Christ’s finished work.

Believer, your inheritance is in heaven waiting for you. It is a future existence of righteousness, peace and joy. Right now you are not home, but one day you will be home. You will close your eyes in this world and open them in the next, and then you will find your rest.

Until that day comes, keep a tender heart for God, stay humble, listen carefully for His voice in His word, share the gospel, stay in prayer, expect God to respond, and find your rest in Christ’s finished work.

Yours In Christ,

Pastor Bob

 

 

© boblane.net 2014