The Counsel of the Lord

Psalms 33:10-12 ESV

“The Lord brings the counsel of the nations to nothing;
he frustrates the plans of the peoples.
The counsel of the Lord stands forever,
the plans of his heart to all generations.
Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,
the people whom he has chosen as his heritage!”

Many people make plans for themselves without regard for God and for what he has planned for their lives. And this includes many people professing faith in Jesus Christ, too. And it includes leaders of a nation whose moto is “one nation under God.” Of course, when we witness these leaders’ actions we have to wonder what “god” our nation is actually under. For America, where I live, is not a godly nation of people. Even the American church is not godly.

Many people who are professing faith in Jesus Christ are not living for the Lord. They are still walking in sin according to the flesh, and they are not walking according to the Spirit with hearts surrendered to Jesus Christ as Lord (Owner-Master). They are a god to themselves for they decide their own life course, and they choose their own path, and they deliberately and habitually sin against God and other humans without conscience.

Some of them sin in secret and so they will cover up their sins with lies and with deception and manipulation. Some of them will even put on a show of righteousness to cover up their sins or perhaps as their own fleshly means of trying to persuade others that they are on the right course and that they are actually following Jesus in obedience when all is being done in the flesh. For they are still not surrendered to Christ, and he is still not Lord of their lives.

But no humans can frustrate the plans of God. He frustrates their plans. No matter what evil plots they may have in mind they cannot carry them out unless God allows it, for a time. The counsel of God will stand forever no matter how many people are trying to destroy it. God’s plan absolutely will be accomplished no matter how many people try as they may to thwart it. For God brings the counsel of the nations to nothing… to nothing! Amen!

I know of no physical nation on this earth whose God is truly the Lord – Father, Son (Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit. But as true followers of Jesus Christ we are a holy nation belonging to God that we may proclaim the excellencies of him who called us out of darkness into his wonderful light. We are a holy people set apart from the world and unto God who have died with Christ to sin and who are living to God and to his righteousness.

[Rom 1:6-7; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-29; Rom 12:1-2; 1 Co 1:9; 1 Co 3:17; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15,21; Gal 5:13-21; Eph 1:3-4; Eph 2:10,21; Eph 5:27; Col 1:22; Col 3:12; 1 Thess 4:7; 2 Tim 1:8-9; 2 Tim 2:21; 1 Pet 1:13-16; 1 Pet 2:5-9,24; 2 Pet 1:3; Tit 2:11-14; Lu 9:23-26; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Jn 2:3-6]

Psalms 33:13-17 ESV

“The Lord looks down from heaven;
he sees all the children of man;
from where he sits enthroned he looks out
on all the inhabitants of the earth,
he who fashions the hearts of them all
and observes all their deeds.
The king is not saved by his great army;
a warrior is not delivered by his great strength.
The war horse is a false hope for salvation,
and by its great might it cannot rescue.”

The way many people live their lives these days you would think that they have no knowledge of God and of right and wrong. They must convince themselves that God cannot see what they are doing. In fact, that is what many people are teaching that once we “believe” (not defined) in Jesus that all sins are forgiven (past, present, and future) and so God can no longer see when we sin. All he sees is Jesus, and so he delights in us, they say.

Now, I know I am teaching from the Old Testament, but the New Testament definitely makes it quite clear that God can indeed still see when we sin and he takes our sins into account if we are among those who are deliberately and habitually sinning against him. And even if sin is no longer our habit still the New Testament Scriptures are filled with warnings to Christians about continued sin and its results. And many of their sins are named specifically.

What the NT Scriptures teach us is that if we continue in deliberate and habitual sin, and if righteousness and obedience to our Lord are not our practice, and if we hate our brothers and sisters, and we do not love them, that we will not inherit eternal life with God. We will die in our sins and hell will be our eternal destination, not heaven. So, we need to take this to heart for what God says, he will do. You can count on it!

Thus, we are not saved from our sins and we don’t have eternal life with God if our profession of faith in Jesus Christ is not preceded by genuine repentance and if it is not followed by walks of holiness and righteousness in obedience to our Lord and to his commands (New Covenant). Daily we are to be dying to sin and to self and walking in obedience to our Lord, and we must continue steadfast in these walks of faith until the very end.

It doesn’t matter if we attend a public worship service once or twice a week faithfully, or if we give our tithe to these institutional churches, or if we are involved in ministries within these “churches,” or if we do good deeds and give to the poor, etc. These things are a vain hope for salvation. What matters to God is the surrender of our lives to him, the forsaking of our sins, and our walks of obedience to him according to his will and purpose.

[Lu 9:23-26; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 1:28-32; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; Rom 6:16; Rom 8:3-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:26-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Jn 15:1-11; Rev. 2-3; Rev 18:1-6; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15; Matt 7:21-23]

Psalms 33:18-19 ESV

“Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him,
on those who hope in his steadfast love,
that he may deliver their soul from death
and keep them alive in famine.”

Those who fear the Lord are us who submit to Christ as Lord (Owner-Master), who have forsaken our lives of sin, and who are walking in obedience to the Lord and to his commands. It doesn’t mean that we are perfect people but that we are no longer living in slavery (addiction) to sin but we are now walking in holiness and righteousness by the grace of God who saved us, and we are doing so in his power, wisdom and strength.

Our hope is in God’s steadfast love, and that love is what sent Jesus Christ to die on that cross that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. For Jesus died that we might no longer live for ourselves but for him who gave his life up for us. He shed his blood for us on that cross to buy us back for God (to redeem us) so that we would now honor God with our bodies. His love delivered us out of our slavery to sin so we’d be slaves of God.

By God-given faith in Jesus Christ we are crucified with Christ in death to sin and we are raised with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. The old us is put to death with Christ so that the new us can live in Christ according to his will and purpose. Sin is to no longer have mastery over our lives so that we obey its lustful desires, but now Jesus Christ is to be our only Lord and Master. Amen!

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:22-25; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Heb 12:1-2; Jn 6:44; 2 Pet 1:1; 1 Co 15:58; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; 1 Co 10:1-22; Heb 3:1-19; Heb 4:1-13]

For Our Nation

An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

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