The Nations Surround Us

Psalm 118:5-9 ESV

Out of my distress I called on the Lord;
the Lord answered me and set me free.
The Lord is on my side; I will not fear.
What can man do to me?
The Lord is on my side as my helper;
I shall look in triumph on those who hate me.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in man.
It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in princes.

The best freedom there could ever be is to be free from our slavery to sin. Amen! It doesn’t mean we will never sin again, but that sin no longer has dominion over us. Satan has no more power over our lives. We are no longer under the control of sin and Satan, for Jesus has set us free!

So many people totally miss this, though. They think that Jesus’ death on a cross was merely to forgive our sins so that we could escape hell and have the hope that we will go to heaven when we die. But, his death paid the penalty for our sin so that we could be delivered out of our slavery, like he delivered the Israelites out of their slavery in Egypt.

Jesus already won this battle for us. He put sin to death on that cross that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. So, in his power and strength within us, we can be victorious over sin and Satan. We can daily put on that armor of God with which to fight off Satan’s evil attacks against us. For, Jesus already made the way of escape for us. Thus, not one of us who believe in Jesus should ever be bound by slavery to sin ever again.

So, it is better that we get the truth about our salvation from the Word of God and not from other humans. For, humans may pull scriptures out of context to try to convince us of a salvation that does not put sin to death, but that leaves us still in slavery to sin.

So, we need to read the scriptures in context so that we get the full understanding of what they mean. For, Jesus died on that cross to deliver us from slavery to sin, not merely to forgive sin.

He Lifted Our Burdens

An Original Work / February 15, 2014
Based off Isaiah 9:2-7

People walk in darkness.
They abide in their sin.
It has power o’er them.
True belief escapes them.

Jesus Christ came to save them.
He gave His life up for them;
Crucified; died for our sin,
So we might be forgiven,
And have life up in heaven.

Many come to know Him.
God’s love now o’erflows them.
They rejoice in vict’ry.
Their sin is but hist’ry.

We were once bound in slav’ry.
Jesus lifted our burdens;
Set us now free from Satan,
So we now walk in freedom.
Sin has no more dominion.

Praise be to our Savior!
He showed us His favor.
He took all our burdens;
Cast them all upon Him.

He is our mediator;
The Light which shines in darkness.
Counselor in our troubles;
He gives peace now in our hearts;
Joy which is everlasting.

Psalm 118:10-16 ESV

All nations surrounded me;
in the name of the Lord I cut them off!
They surrounded me, surrounded me on every side;
in the name of the Lord I cut them off!
They surrounded me like bees;
they went out like a fire among thorns;
in the name of the Lord I cut them off!
I was pushed hard, so that I was falling,
but the Lord helped me.

The Lord is my strength and my song;
he has become my salvation.
Glad songs of salvation
are in the tents of the righteous:
“The right hand of the Lord does valiantly,
the right hand of the Lord exalts,
the right hand of the Lord does valiantly!”

The nations (the world, including the worldly church) have come against the faithful in Christ Jesus, and they have come against the gospel of our salvation as taught by Jesus and his NT apostles. And, they are out to destroy the gospel message and to discredit its messengers.

Their goal is world-wide unity politically (governmentally) and spiritually (religiously). And, so they have been on the all-out attack against the gospel and its messengers for some time now. So, they have diluted the gospel message to make it more acceptable to all people – to all human flesh. And, they have reduced it to nothing more than a mere acknowledgment of Jesus Christ and an acceptance of his grace and forgiveness of sins.

But, they remove the most critical components from the gospel message. They remove the requirement that we come to Christ humbly, in confession of our sins, in true repentance, and that we turn our hearts over to Jesus Christ in surrender to his will, and in submission to his Lordship, and in obedience to his commands (his instructions to us for godly living).

So, in this day and age when the gospel and its messengers are under severe attack, we who believe in Jesus Christ must stand firm in our faith and in defense of the gospel. And, we must expose the lies for what they are, and we must tell people the truth, for their eternity depends on them knowing and living the truth.

For, Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. If we don’t die with him to sin, and if we don’t live with him to his righteousness, then we don’t have eternal life with God. We don’t have the hope of heaven when we die. But, we have the promise of eternity in hell. So, know the truth through reading the Bible, and then live the truth (See: Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24; 1 Jn. 1:5-9; Gal. 5:19-21; Gal. 6:7-8).

Courageous!

An Original Work / December 24, 2013
Based off Various Scriptures

The Word of God throughout taught.
Some people heard, but did doubt.
Still others had faith in Christ.
By grace He purified them.

They turned from sin
And they obeyed Christ.
He opened up their blinded eyesight;
Turned them from darkness
To the true Light;
Forgave their sin by His might.

He strengthened them in their faith.
He said, “Remain my faithful.”
He called them to obedience.
By faith, they were so grateful.

By faith, they were to follow Jesus;
To daily sit and listen to Him;
To have such faith
That mountains could move;
To love those whom He gave them.

Be on your guard; courageous.
Stand firm in faith. Be thankful.
Take up the shield of your faith;
Protect against all evil.

Do not move from
The hope that you have.
Your faith in Jesus let it endure.
Hold to the truth;
Your conscience be clear.
Endure with perseverance.

Psalm 118:17-24 ESV

I shall not die, but I shall live,
and recount the deeds of the Lord.
The Lord has disciplined me severely,
but he has not given me over to death.

Open to me the gates of righteousness,
that I may enter through them
and give thanks to the Lord.
This is the gate of the Lord;
the righteous shall enter through it.
I thank you that you have answered me
and have become my salvation.
The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.
This is the Lord’s doing;
it is marvelous in our eyes.
This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.

The Lord will allow us to go through persecution, for it is for our strengthening, and it is for his glory. He has allowed this time in history, too, when the gospel and its servants are under severe attack by the nations and by the worldly church (See: Matt. 24; Rev. 13).

For, it is God’s will, not only that we live for him, but that we suffer for him, too. But, these times of suffering come to test our faith to see if it is genuine, and they come, too, for God to prune us and to purify us and to conform us, too, to the likeness of Christ. So, they are for our good.

So, we should give thanks to the Lord for these trials and tribulations, for they are ultimately for our good, that we may walk in the ways of the Lord, and that we might please him in all that we do.

For, when things are going easy for us, we may be tempted to get consumed with self and not with God. Thus, these difficulties are used by God to draw us closer to him, and to make us into the people he has called us to be. Yet, what results from these trials all depends on how we respond to them.

So, when we are persecuted, although it is certainly ok to cry it out to God in our pain and suffering, we should submit ourselves over to our Lord and allow him to work his will and his ways in and through our lives, for his purposes and for his glory. For, he is working his righteousness in our lives that we may walk in his ways and in his truth, and that we may be pure vessels ready for his use in sharing his gospel with the world around us, so that many people may come to know Jesus Christ, too.

All Through the Night

An Original Work / December 7, 2013
Based off Various Scriptures

Blessed are you when you’re persecuted
Because of your faith in Jesus Christ.
Blessed are you when people insult you,
And falsely say what leads folks to doubt.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is
Great in the heavens. You’re not alone.

When you are persecuted in one place,
Flee to another. God will be there.
You will be hated by all the nations
Because you testify of God’s grace.
Many will seize you and persecute you,
And put to death the foll’wers of Christ.

Yet, do not fear what humans may do to you,
For I’m with you all through the night.
I tell you, love your enemies with my love,
And forgive as I forgave you.
Pray for those who do evil against you.
Rest in my love and grace from above.

Friday, January 11, 2019

10 thoughts on “The Nations Surround Us

  1. Amem. No one can hurt us physically or mentally. We are covered thru the Father thru the death and raising of Christ and His Blood on the alter befor God our Father. :))

    Like

    • Bonnie, people can and will hurt us physically and mentally. I have been hurt plenty in my lifetime, beginning as a small child and continuing throughout my lifetime even into the present, so all 69 years of my life.

      But, what they do to us does not have to take us out. It doesn’t have to destroy us if our trust is in the Lord. They may even put us to death physically, but they can’t take the Holy Spirit from us. They can’t remove our peace or our joy or our salvation.

      So, even though they persecute us severely, and God allows it, it doesn’t have to end in our destruction, but it can end in our joy and in our comfort in the Lord, and in our praise to God, and in our being strengthened in our faith and even more determined than ever to keep following Jesus Christ with our lives. And, that is much cause for rejoicing, for this is all possible through our faith in Jesus.

      What we can take away from this is that, even though God leads us through tough times, he is our support and our help, and he is allowing these situations in our lives ultimately for our good, and for our maturity in Christ and our strengthening of our faith and for our endurance. So, when we go through these times, which we will, we need to learn to lean on Jesus and trust him with our lives and pray for wisdom and guidance in knowing what to do and how to respond, and then we just need to obey him, and not follow our feelings.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Yes, You are right. I should have qualified it by stating that only in our God’s will can this happen. Like Job. Thank you for correcting me. :))

        Liked by 1 person

      • Bonnie, you are fine. I thought that was probably what you meant. I just needed to clarify it just for the sake of clarity.

        For I would never want to leave the impression that following Jesus means we will never face persecution, but that when we do face persecution, we have our Lord on our side, and he will help us through it all. And, he will work it all out for our good and for his glory and for his purposes.

        Thank you for your gracious response. I appreciate your heart!! ❤ ❤

        Liked by 1 person

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