Showing posts with label trust. Show all posts
Showing posts with label trust. Show all posts

Wednesday 12 January 2011


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Jesus wants you to "REST"

Are you tired of going through it all alone?

This is for my Christian friends and anybody who experience anxiety toward their future, their finance, their job, their health, and their marital relationship. This is for all who seek rest.

Matthew 11:28
“Come to Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

To Rest In The Lord Is Simple. All You Need To Do Is To Choose To Take Him by His words. When you do, you choose to believe and to hope, and that is called "Faith".

If it’s that simple then why are we not at rest? Why are we full of anxiety?  Because we are human beings living in a world of human doing.  Many such as I, have brought hardship to ourselves.  The old tradition was that a man must be well-established before he married. For that reason, many women became widows at a young age. A woman would accept marriage only to a man who could provide for her and give security and that would usually be an older man.  Wisdom came before love.

Today’s fad is to put emotional love (or hormones) before wisdom.  Is it not an act of love to use wisdom to prepare for such a responsibility to care for a family?   Nature itself teaches that lesson; birds prepare their nest, and foxes prepare their den.  A big contrast compared to today's costume. We lived in common-law first to see if we were compatible, and moved into an apartment.   We get married, get a mortgage, car, maybe 2 since both got to work to make payments. Children if any, are sent to daycare by 6 am, pick them up at 6 pm. eat, clean up, and go to bed. Start all over the next day.

...Hmmm, there is wisdom in tradition don't you think?  Maybe you were wise and did all the right things yet are full of anxiety. 

I, as for so many lacked wisdom, nevertheless, there is hope. “Come to me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”.   ‘ALL’ which includes the wise and the not so wise. In as much deliverance became available to the tribe of Israel, and slaves to Egyptians, deliverance from anxieties is available to all of us now. It is Jesus’ will to deliver us from the care (yoke) of this world. It is part of our long Christian life experience to ‘trust’ in our Lord.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you”. Matthew 6:33…all these things shall be added to you, ALL, which means all, not just a little here or maybe. Jesus meant ALL. All You Need To Do Is Take Him by His Word.

There have been a multitude of sermons, commentaries, books, songs, and hymns written on the subject, all expressing individual experiences in resting in the Lord. Yet when difficult circumstance appears most of us fall into doubt and fear.   We seem to have difficulties to apply rest. Why? Because we doubt?  When things go well, all we want is to be independent and take care of ourselves. We do not accept the fact that Jesus proposes to take care of all things in good times as well as bad times.  In good time Jesus proposes to even make it easier. The time to learn to rest in the Lord is when things go well. But most of us never learn. The statistic shows that 90% of Christians live in a state of uncertainty.

This commentary is for someone desperately seeking an answer to the dilemma he/she finds himself or herself. My dear American Christian friends who are experiencing being let down by your government and who are going through the worst recession ever and only to get worse. This is for my Christian friends who experience anxiety toward the future, their finance, their job, their health, and their marriage. This is for all who seek rest yet are full of fear and anxiety. This is Jesus' call to you, “Come to Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest,”  (Matthew 11:28). 

To rest in the Lord is to trust in the Lord. To trust in the Lord is to believe in the Lord’s words. To believe in the Lord’s words is to apply faith in the Lord. Faith is a gift. The gift of faith comes from God’s grace. God’s grace comes from His mercy. His mercy comes from His love.

The most important gift ever given is the gift of the Holy Spirit who dwells in us. All this for one purpose; to help us to seek first the kingdom of God so that you may know God and that you… “may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God,” Ephesians 3:18-19.  

Listen to the word of the Holy Spirit, and read the whole chapter of the book of Proverb 8.  Is it not wonderful? Not only have we not received the gift of eternal life but also the presence of the Holy Spirit in us. We have everything going for us. We have the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit desires that we succeed, not fail.  Our inheritance is to reign with Jesus.  After salvation, which qualified us into the family of God, we are trained for, a king and priest position.

It took 65 years for Enoch to learn to walk (at "rest") with God.  "After he begot Methuselah, Enoch walked with God 300 years and begot sons and daughters.  So all the days of Enoch were 365 years" (Gen 5:22-23).  It took me 56 years to learn to "rest" in the Lord, and still in training.  How long will it take you?

What is God's will? “For this is the will of God, your sanctification”, (1 Thes 4:3). This means that we are set apart, and belong to God. It is God’s will that we enter into His rest. “Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience,” (Hebrews 4:11). What kind of rest is the author of the Book of Hebrews talking about? It is more than resting from all the works of attaining our salvation, it is by grace alone that we are saved. Jesus calls us to a perpetual Sabbath rest. It means a rest from all worldly works. That "rest" is available now while we are waiting for Jesus's return.

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Do you know what is so ironic? It is that the people of Israel had a strong witness of God's power and glory. God liberated them from slavery from the hand of the Egyptians and yet refused to enter the land promised to them.  They refuse to enter His rest.  What were the consequences? See Hebrews 3:11, forty years in the wilderness. And yet, once in the promised land, they continually refused to let God take care of them so that they could fulfill their real purpose, and that is to represent God’s kingdom here on earth. They refused to enter into God’s rest. Why? Hebrews 3:19, “because of unbelief”.  They refused by not seeking God and His righteousness. That is the main reason why they were led in captivity in Babylon. They experience the wrath of God, which is tough love. Their captivity was of their own doing, living their own choices. As a good father, God gave us freedom of choice. 

Beginning Of Sorrows: As The Tension Rises, Don't Give Up!

Are we any different? We suffer the consequences of our choices. We are experiencing God’s tough love also. We have been liberated from slavery from the hand of Satan yet refuse to enter God’s promised rest.  We were like chickens living in a hen house that the fox had built and that fox is Satan. We are free yet refuse to get out of the hen's house.  Jesus pleads to the Jews by sending a multitude of prophets inviting them into His rest, yet refused.

"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!"  (Matthew 23:37).  

What's good for the gander is good for the goose. That invitation to the Jews as a nation is now available to both Jews and Gentiles as "The Church" There is a time shortly when Israel as a nation will accept Jesus's invitation, but for now, that invitation is for all Gentiles.

Many Christians do not realize that we are commanded to enter His rest. I never could understand as a Christian why I was as miserable and insecure as so many Christians. The reason is that it is not taught in most secular denominations. Most denominations concentrate more on developing social activities than teaching God's way of life.  See my commentary title, “Why is Jesus’ Church Divided?  Christianity is like the menu of an Ice Cream Parlour.”

First, we must understand that rest was instituted from the beginning, (Heb 4:3b) 

“…although the works were finished from the foundation of the world”.
Adam was living in a state of rest, "the works were finished."  

Everything was provided for him. He/she sought after God’s kingdom and His righteousness. Humanity lost that condition of "rest"? It was lost when Adam disobeyed. His mind became distorted when he chose to be self-directed. He is the originator of the spirit of "self-provider”. It was then that Adam entered a state of restlessness, and we followed. To know more about the intended rest I encourage you to read my commentary I wrote, titled, “Economic Crisis: As Christians what are we do? "REST"”

Here is an excerpt:

"Rest" is available now as it was with Enoch, Noah, Job, Abraham, Moses, Daniel, and many more.  "Rest" always was available; furthermore, because we have been separated from the fellowship with God for such a long period, we needed a helper to teach us to attain that "rest".  How do you acquire "rest"?  It is simple.  This might be a surprise, but that too is Jesus' work.  You need to be attentive to the following:

Once you have accepted Jesus as your personal saviour and redeemer, it is His responsibility to bring you to a green pasture (rest).  Jesus is our Good Shepherd.  "He looks for a good pasture for His sheep.  He found good pasture with plenty of grass" (1 Chronicles 4:39).  "The LORD is my Shepherd, I shall not be in want (Ps 23: 1)".  "I am the Good Shepherd.  The Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep” (Jn 10:11).  Not only did He lay down His physical life for us, but He also gives all His time and attention to teach and provide us "rest".

By grace, you are saved and have guaranteed everlasting life, but you are not at rest.  Jesus will be looking for you.  Actually, He is at work right now in your life to bring you into His "rest".  "I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen" (at "rest").  If you are not at rest now, you are not of His pen.  “I must bring them also.  They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one Shepherd,” Jn 10:16.  His sheep are members of His Church.  Some are already of His pen, they are the ones at "rest". He is going after those members (other sheep) who are not at "rest".  The "other sheep" are not "the unsaved" as some have been taught.  His sheep are inside and outside of His pen.  They are part of the same body, the farm property (among the good ground, and among thorns, (Matt 13:7,8).  (Luke 15:4-7), shows how much more Jesus rejoices after one of His stray sheep is found and returns to rest with the other sheep.

Some Christians are in a peaceful and restful mind setting and others are not.  That is the reason why some members of your congregation seem to function stress-free in their life and others do not.  It is not necessarily sins that keep us from receiving His "rest" daily, but a matter of not learning the principle of coming at "rest" in the Lord.  Sin confessed is sin forgiven.  That is the first fundamental part of learning to "rest".  "Rest" is, learned.  That is moreover Jesus's responsibility to teach you.  Are you a good student?  Do you pay attention to Jesus's life lesson?  Are you conscious of Jesus's presence and at work in you, in your life?  Eventually, He will get your attention.  Invite Jesus to live in your life daily, and be conscious of His presence.

"Rest is the secret of human fruitfulness. As you consent to this, a wonderful thing will begin to happen. You will find the rest. Jesus said you would. "Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart, and you will find rest," Matthew 11:29. Rest, with all it implies in terms of fruitfulness and dominion; reigning, ruling, producing that which is worthwhile and satisfying in life. That is the secret of life. This is why Jesus said, "If any man will save his life, he shall lose it. But if he shall lose his life for my sake, he shall find it," (Matthew 16:25, Mark 8:35, Luke 9:24). He will find rest; he will fulfill the Sabbath rest for that is what the Sabbath is. It is God's divine provision for us".

Recessions come and go.  Jesus "rest" is permanent and sure.  You do not have to wait for His return to benefit from His "intended rest".  The "Law under Christ" as Paul expressed "I am under Christ's law", (1 Corinthians 9:21) gave me not only freedom but also "rest". Invite Jesus to live in you.  Increase awareness of Him working in you.  Learn to "rest".  “For we who have believed do enter that rest”, (Heb 4:3a) “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us”, Ephesians 3:20.

Now let's put each statement in perspective, one by one. To rest in the Lord you must trust Him, believe in Him, and apply faith in the Lord.


God gives us free choice. Most Christians choose to doubt God.  Yes, choose. It is His words against your reasoning. We do not “Take Him by His Word”.  The factor that helps us to achieve trust is by understanding that God knows our destiny, (1 Tim 6:15,  1 Cor 4:8).  He knows what is important to us, (Matt 6:32).  Therefore let us trust Him with all our needs, (Proverb 3:5,6).  

You may not be aware of, or perhaps you were taking God’s mercy for granted but showing a lack of trust toward God is an act of disobedience, therefore, a sin. It offended God when Israel refused to enter the land promised to Abraham. It offended God when Saul did not keep the instruction to wait on Samuel, (1 Samuel 13:13).  Even Job offended God in not trusting God.  Oh yes. It was not only self-righteousness that caused Job suffering but doubt. 

Job said, “ For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me. I was not in safety, neither had I rest, neither was I quiet, yet trouble came,”  (Job 3:25-26). 

 Job doubted. Job was not at rest.  As it turns out, in my opinion, his doubt of God's protection invited and warranted these tragedies.  While living a full life of health and prosperity, did Job fear that disasters could be not far behind? He expected them. Do you expect God's wrath toward you at the first moment you fall back and sin?  I was rear in the Catholic tradition of fearing God's wrath which is not true worshiping. Job's frequent burnt offerings could prove his insecurity toward God, believing that God is out to get him on the first sign of disobedience. Could it be that he did not understand God's grace and mercy? God is not out there to punish us but to help us grow as a loving father is toward a child.

What about us? Some not only doubt their salvation by fulfilling unnecessary works but doubt God's divine protection and blessing by working to please God so that His curse would not fall on us. We are no better than pagans who offer sacrifices to their idols to appease their anger. 


What is the root cause of fear? Doubts. What is the root cause of doubt? Not believing, not taking God by His Word. Here are some examples; Many doubt that God did not create heaven and earth and that it took 6 days to create the earth, all living creatures, and the universe.  There are many Christians who prefer trusting secular scientists who teach the theory of the Big Bang. Science did not intimidate Daniel who was surrounded by the best of king Nebuchadnezzar's consultant.  He trusted God to reveal to him the mystery of the king’s dream.  Please read my commentary title, "Mystery In The Trinity Revealed In A Molecule Of Water (H²O)" to help you understand the mystery of God's creation.

Many doubt the validity of the Adam and Eve story. It is a fairy tale for many. If it is a fairy tale, we would not need a redeemer. We would not need to be saved. Please take the time to read my article titled, “Simplicity In The Gospel…Step 1 Believe”.

What about the virgin birth of Jesus? What about Jesus, was He a man with special talents or was He really the Son of God? Did He really resurrect from the dead?  Why are you reading the horoscope?  Why are you buying a lotto ticket?  What is the motive?  Do you believe that it is Mother Nature that is in control of the weather?  Do you doubt God’s words?  Then how can you trust Jesus to take care of all things?


Please read the whole chapter of Hebrews 11.  It is all about faith.  Faith is a choice.  “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,” (Eph 2:80.  “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”, (Heb 11:1).  It is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. What are the things not seen?  They are His promises.  Faith is believing and hoping for God's promises.  The Bible is full of God's promises, and 'rest' is one of many.

To believe is a choice.  To trust God is a choice.  It is a choice to apply faith.  It is a choice. Here are the most common excuses that I hear from Christians; 

“ It is one thing to say, another to do”; "It is easier said than done";  “It is hard”; "You don't understand, my circumstance is different."  

Let me be very clear, most Christians sound exactly like the Israelites, they murmured and refused to enter the promised land. They refused to enter God's rest, (Heb 3:11).  To believe is a choice.  To trust God is a choice.  It is a choice to apply faith. It is a choice. It is not a physical afford. It is a decision, a choice. Therefore - Chose. (Heb 4:10):

  • By (his choice) faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain,
  • By (choice) faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death
  • But without (choosing) faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe (and no doubt) that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
  • By (his choice) faith Noah… prepared an ark to save his household, and became the heir of the righteousness, which is according to (his choice) faith.
  • By (his choice) faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place, which he would receive as an inheritance.
  • By (his choice) faith he dwelt in the land of promise as in a foreign country
  • By (her choice) faith Sarah herself also received the strength to conceive seed, and she bore a child
  • These all died in (their choice) faith, not having received the promises
  • By (his choice) faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac
  • By (his choice) faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come
  • By (his choice) faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff.
  • By (his choice) faith Joseph, when he was dying, made mention of the departure of the children of Israel and gave instructions concerning his bones
  • By (his parent's choice) faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden three months by his parents because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s command.
  • By (his choice) faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward.
  • By (his choice) faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured as seeing Him who is invisible.
  • By (his choice) faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, lest he who destroyed the firstborn should touch them.
  • By (their choice) faith they passed through the Red Sea as dry land, whereas the Egyptians, attempting to do so, were drowned.
  • By (choice) faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days.  By (her choice) faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe when she had received the spies with peace.
  • And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets: who through (their choice) faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.  Women received their dead raised to life again.
  • Others were tortured, (by choice) not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. Still, others had trials of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment.  They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, and were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented— of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth.
  • And all these, having obtained a good testimony through (choice) faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.  'Do you understand that some by choice decided to accept death rather than deliverance knowing something better awaits them'.
 Hebrews 12

  • Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight (disbelief), and the sin (doubt) that so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith (our choice), who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
It is by choice that Jesus went on the cross.  Why would it be any different for us? We are to choose to believe, to trust, to hope, and therefore to apply faith to enter God's rest“Since therefore it remains that some must enter it (rest)”, Heb 4:6a. 
Now make it a prayer of choice to believe. 

Proverb 3:5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.

…and this is how we enter God’s rest.


“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus,”  (Philippians 4:19)

When ready to make a commitment, please print this contract with Our Lord and sign it.

“For we who have believed do enter that rest,” Hebrews 4:3a

Wednesday 5 January 2011

The New Covenant commandments are sum up in three aspects; Believe, Trust, and Love

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These are what we are to teach and things we must observe which Jesus commanded.

1.     Believe

Believe that Jesus is the Son of God, (Matt 16:16), the One that God had sent so that whoever believes in Him may receive the gift of eternal life, (John 3:16).  “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live””, (John 11:25).  Salvation is an event, not a process.  All it takes is to believe.  I am a firm advocate that once saved always saved, (Hebrews 13:5).  Jesus died for all sins, past, present, and future.  Once we make that choice to believe in Jesus as the Son of God and accept him in our hearts, we are forever His.  If we believe that we are saved because we belong to a congregation, or by our good deeds, we are deceiving ourselves.  It is through Jesus obeying the will of the Father that we are redeemed and given eternal life, nothing else, (John 6:38-40).  We are not saved by our conduct or our works.  We are saved by believing only.  I encourage you to read this excellent commentary by Jack Kelly's title, “OSAS, The Whole Story" Once Saved Always Saved.  Sin will never separate us from God…. our guilt and shame will.  Just do not do what Adam did, run away and hide.  Run toward the cross.  God is merciful; His Son Jesus is sitting beside Him as a beacon of the price Jesus paid for our sins.  We are His children; therefore, He acts as a good father even better than our earthly parent.  He is rebuking us to teach us not to condemn us.  Got that?

2.     Trust

Trust.  This is part of a process called sanctification, “to set apart for special use or purpose”.  It is a lifelong process of learning to trust God to do His work in us.  It is called “Walking with God”.  The factor that helps us to achieve this is understanding that God knows our destiny, (1 Tim 6:15, 1 Cor 4:8).  He knows what is important to us, (Matt 6:32), therefore, let us trust Him with all our needs, (Pr 3:5-6).  You may not be aware of, or perhaps you were taking God’s mercy for granted but showing a lack of trust toward God is an act of sin against Him.

From Apostasy Now (author unknown)

“And Job Said:

Job 3:25-26 “ For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me.26 I was not in safety, neither had I rest, neither was I quiet; yet trouble came”.

Note verse 26, Job accounted his basic insecurity and watchfulness as a hedge of protection against such tragedies. These were the things he greatly feared. Job accounted his TACIT CONFESSION that these things would or might come as a form of righteousness...he expected that by admission to his LIABILITY to such things, he was exonerated of the sin of presumption. Job was afraid that if he INSISTED THAT GOD would preserve him, THIS would be THE sin that brought on the things he greatly feared. As it turns out, it was not his presumption on God's protection, but his DOUBT OF IT that invited and warranted these tragedies.

After a full life of health and prosperity, Job greatly fears that such tragedies are not far behind. He expected them. Do you?

Many years of walking with God, and many years of blessing, are not enough to convince Job that he is SAFE with his God.”

How many of us walk through life doubting God deep down in our minds.  We want to believe, nevertheless ‘the want to be’ is not faith, is not trusting.  Why?  Our mind is full of myths and false teaching.  We never challenge what we believe.  Take for example the theory of evolution.  There are many Christians who embrace such teaching as a possibility…maybe it did take 400 billion years for God to create the earth and the universe and everything that lives on it…  maybe Jesus was just a man with great humanity and values…maybe there are more than one way to an after life higher existence… maybe it is by buying a lottery ticket that God will provide for me.   What causes doubts?    Like Sarah, Abraham's wife, we do not wait, we just go ahead take action, and assume that it is God’s will.  What causes us to sin?  (Is 42:8, 48:11).

Please understand this, evolution is a science-explained process, and creation is by the word of God spoken.  In Heb 11:3 it is recorded that it is through faith that we understand that the worlds were framed, put together by the word of God: so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.  If you ever have spare time, take the time to read this article entitled “Evolution or Creation, Which?” By A.T. Jones.

Again from Apostasy Now (author unknown)

“Job's righteousness was a real faith in a living God who could be prevailed upon to come to his rescue. Job had that faith that has been the same since the beginning of time:

Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Romans 4:19-22 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about a hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb: 20 He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; 21 And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. 22 And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.

Abraham was accounted righteous BECAUSE HE BELIEVED A PROMISE. We are nowhere told that Abraham was accounted righteous because he believed a commandment or a threat of punishment: but because he BELIEVED A PROMISE from God!”

Did not God promise to take care of us?  A promise made is a promise kept.  How many make God a liar?  You wouldn’t dare accuse God of being a liar of course but you might justify your doubts, right?… as I am not good enough, God is not pleased with me, I have a secret sin that I kept avoiding discussing with God…etc.

From Apostasy Now (author unknown)

“True faith is not easy to attain to, because it requires a conscience that is void of offense. A conscience void of offense is not a rash presumption that God "has no objections to anything in me because Christ has died for me". A conscience void of offense comes from facing the facts about yourself; facing the truth of the Word of God, and living up to the light we already have. The Bible plainly says that an uncondemned heart gets WHATEVER IT ASKS FOR. (1 John 3:19-22)

The fact is.....that our heart may not ask for what our mouth asks for a man asks for healing - but in his heart, he knows he shouldn't have it - he knows that his sickness is his just deserts. He knows that it would be UNRIGHTEOUS of God to give him what he is asking for; he does not really expect to get what he is asking for; he doesn't REALLY want what he is asking for despite his profession to the contrary. GET RIGHT, AND BE BLESSED.”

It is important to acknowledge our sins and doubt.  Ask for forgiveness for our lack of trust.  We do not lose our salvation; we are temporarily on hold from His fellowship and from receiving His favors.  This is “one” of the many other reasons why God does not answer prayers.  This is the way God rebukes us, and gets our attention.  As Jesus explained to Peter, only the feet need to be washed, not the whole body.  Jesus took care of the body by washing it with His blood.  We only need to take care of our feet, John 13:10.  God is quick to forgive and to restore our fellowship with Him, (1 John 1:9). 

Look at the life of Enoch.  Enoch lived for 365 years and walked with God (trusting God) for 300 years.  It took 65 years for Enoch to learn to trust God, (Genesis 5:21-23).  I wonder sometimes how he faced life before the flood.  I read that it was as bad as it is today, Luke 17:26, 2 Peter 2:5.  How long will it take us to learn that lesson?  How long will it take you to take Jesus at His Word?  Frankly, I would be afraid to go through life today without Jesus.  The Israelites were 40 years in the desert and sent in captivity for 70 years in Babylon, and yet as of today Israel as a nation has not learned to trust God.  Israel is still God’s people, (Zec 2:8, Ezekiel 37:11-12).  Hard to believe... this only proves how secure is our salvation.  More may be found on this subject of trusting God by reading my commentary on the subject titled “Economic Crisis: As Christians, what are we to do?  Answer: "REST"” Trust is the element that 90% of Christians fail to apply in their life with Jesus.  Most live a defeated life; appear worrying, and sad, and show a life of sacrifice instead of a life full of an abundance of joy as it was intended, “I have come that they may have life and have it abundantly”, (John 10:10).  They either had bad teachers or just did not learn.  Too many are among thorns as I was:  “Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the Word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the Word, and he becomes unfruitful”, (Matt 13:22).  Failing to trust does not take away our salvation.  It just makes life miserable and unfruitful.  The sooner we learn to trust God the better so that we can go on and do what Jesus set us apart for and purpose.  To trust is a decision.  To please God is to trust Him.  To trust God is to please God.  We have heard of the saying; “God helps those who help themselves”, surprise…that is not in the bible.  God helps those who depend and hope entirely on Him.

Blessed is the man…/woman… who trusts in the LORD,
      And whose hope is the LORD. 
       For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters,
      Which spreads out its roots by the river,
      And will not fear when heat comes;
      But its leaf will be green,
      And will not be anxious in the year of drought,
      Nor will cease from yielding fruit.  Jer 17:7-8

nbsp; It is all about making the decision to trust.  STOP SINNING AND TRUST.  Romans 6

3.     Love

Love.  Paul couldn’t emphasize more on this subject,  “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.  But the greatest of these is love”, (1 Corinthians 13:13).  Read all of John’s three letters.  It is summed up in this; (1 John 5:3):

“For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments.  And His commandments are not burdensome 
and in (1 John 4:21): 
“And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother also

It does not say ‘should try, tolerate or worship apart’, (Gal 5:14, 1 Tim1:5).  Mercy and grace we want, but how quick are we to do to others as Jesus did to us?  We may want to take the time to read the parable of the unforgiving servant (Matt 18:23-35).  We are to show love in the form of mercy and grace not only toward a few and then ask for but as an act of compassion without his/her asking, (Luke 23:34).  To dispute over preferences, that appear to be common sense for some is not sinful, but is a good opportunity to show mercy and grace.  For someone to prefer different flavors than ours, which is important to us, is also a good opportunity to show mercy and grace. 

The New Covenant is based on love.  God’s love toward us and love between each other; (1 John 2:7-11, Matthew 22:34-40).  “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another,” John 13:34.  By this all will know that you are My disciples if you have a love for one another,” John 13:35.  “ALL” meaning the whole of society will know that we are God’s disciples if we love one another.  Do we understand now, why division hinders God’s Works“Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against himself will not stand”.  Take a good look inside of many churches.  There are many empty pews and some who attend are too busy to live with all these added flavors and avoid living with love.  The churches are brought to desolation.  In my opinion, this is the one major cause for the prophetic event called the “falling away”, (2 Thess 2:3).  Jesus concluded with this strong assertion, “He who is not with me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad” Matt 12: 30.  Let me put it this way; he who is not with Jesus by practicing love in the form of mercy and grace within the church communities is against Jesus, he who does not practice love, does not gather with Jesus but scatters abroad, breaks up the church or keeps people away.  Let us start practicing loving people in the church.  We may find it easier to love those within the world. 

It is very sad.  The loyal aging attendees are the ones who suffer the most.  They remember the time when the church was alive and the pews were full.  Sunday was an all-day family gathering from church to home.  The family would share meals, sing songs, and share their life experiences.  Now it is only memories.  The church is empty, and they return to an empty home.  Sad…very sad.

Ray C.  Stedman's commentary on the Parable of the Leaven titled "The Case of the Sneaky Housewife" wrote:

“That is what is often lacking in the church today.  We have taken away the koinonia, the commonness of the body of Christ.  We have lost that to a great extent in the church in general.  But we have held onto the kerygma, the preaching, the proclamation.  We expect to convince everybody by an intellectual presentation of truth.  But the reason why the evangelical church of our day is rejected and set aside in so many quarters is that people who come to it are disappointed because they hear great Words but they don't see great lives; they don't see warmth, they don't see love and acceptance, they don't see understanding and forgiveness.  What they too often run into is strife and bickering and fighting and quarreling and unforgiveness, jealousy and bitterness, grudges and splits and feuds and divisions, hostility and anger, worry and anxiety.  They listen to the preaching of these great Words that the church has to say and then they look at our lives to see how it works.  And what they see convinces them that the Words are not true.  What they see is exactly what they find in their own lives and homes.”  

So they say to us, "What are you Christians talking about?  What's the difference?  What do you Christians have that we don't have---without the inconvenience of having to go through all the rites you go through.  What is so great about this message?  Why doesn't it do something for you?  Why should we believe it and go to all the trouble of becoming a Christian when we can live the same way ourselves?  We don't need the church or the Bible to teach us how to fight.  We don't need the gospel to help us to be angry and resentful and bitter and divided against each other.  We can do all that without it." And so there is an immediate loss of attention to the message that we are proclaiming because there is no evidence of the witness of communion.  What is missing is the oneness, the precious fellowship together of the people of God living the life of God.

Hypocrisy is what we display in society.  The society is right to accuse Christians of being hypocrites.  What is so ironic is that many Christians do not want to face this truth…they prefer to be in denial and view themselves as victims of Christian persecution.  We are rightly being judged by society and we do not listen.

Ray C.  Stedman continued with this strong accusation toward today’s churches: 

“What is the result of all this leaven that has come in?  Well, we can see it abounding on every side, can't we?  People come to church.  They listen, they sing a hymn, they stand at the right time, they bow their heads at the right angle, they close the book together, and they sit down.  They go through the motions, but there is no exchange of life.  There is no oneness, no sense of openness, no acceptance, no forgiveness.  And homes, which are supposedly Christian, are often filled with strife and bickering and fighting, even physical attack.  These things are the result of the leaven which has permeated and pervaded the body of Christ.”

Ray Stedman then explains the cause and the solution:

“If the leaders of the church through the centuries had faithfully stuck with the Scripture…‘ the cone and the ice cream’… and had taught it as it is, these unhappy developments would have been prevented.  But everywhere I go as a pastor today, speaking to groups of other pastors, I find out that this is the great weakness -- pastors are not teaching the Bible.  They are not instructing their people from the Word of God and teaching what it actually says about how they are to live together.  They aren't saying a Word about that.  They are discussing remote doctrinal questions and giving their opinions on the social and political issues of the day…the flavours… instead of instructing in what the Bible is really aimed at -- the very personal lives of individuals and their relationships one with another.  If the leadership of the church were carefully going over the Scriptures together with people, unfolding the Word of God, the whole effect of leaven would be greatly minimized within the body of Christ.”

How sad to see what all these undesired flavors do.  It has destroyed the purpose of the Body of Christ. 

Lambert Dolphin's commentary titled “The Church at the End of the Age” points out:

“The church described as the body of Christ, with Christ the head of the Body (Ephesians 4, 1 Cor 12-14) is a reminder that the true church is a living organism, not an organization.  We need one another and depend on one another as the various organs and systems of the human body are interdependent.  Each member of the church reports directly to the Head, there is no hierarchical leadership in the church.  All members have spiritual gifts and all are called to the ministry.  "If one member suffers, all suffer, if one rejoices all rejoice."

Lambert Dolphin again in his commentary titled, “Keeping Ready for the Return of the Lord” explained;

“One of the haunting problems in the church today is its identity crisis.  In many places, it seems to have lost the sense of what it was intended to be.  Instead of a body, with each one "members one of another" and ministering to one another in love and concern, it has become an organization operating various programs.  Paul wrote to the Galatians, "Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ" (Galatians 6:2).  But today's Christians often touch each others' lives on only the most superficial basis, and do not want to hear another's problems because they "don't want to get involved.”      

Further, in his commentary Lambert Dolphin clarifies the intent of the church:

“Being ready means loving, trusting, and waiting for Jesus Christ, of course.  The faithful servant is faithful because he is expecting his Lord's return.  But it also has to do with faithful service, that is, continuing to carry out what Jesus has left us in this world to do.  We find the same idea in two of the three parables in chapter 25.  In one parable faithfulness is demonstrated by the wise use of the talents Christ has given (Matt.  25:14-30).  In the other, it is seen in selfless service to those who are hungry or thirsty or have other pressing needs (Matt.  25:31-46).”

To live in the spirit of the church of Philadelphia we are to keep His Word, and not deny His name.  It is accomplished by believing, trusting, and loving.  The pure taste of ice cream should take precedence over all other flavors.  That is the simplicity of the church.  That is ‘in a nutshell’ the signification of the talents in the Parable of the Talents in (Matt 25:14); the talents are His love.  “For to everyone who has…love… more will be given, and he will have abundance, but from him who does not have…love… even what he has will be taken away.” 

Love in its true form of grace and mercy is what we have received to invest.  The
Parable of the Creditor and The Two Debtors in (Luke 7:41-43) explain in plain words what the servant in the Parable of the Talent received.  Let's read Luke 7:41-43

“There was a certain creditor who had two debtors.  One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty.  And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both.  Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?”
And He said to him, “You have rightly judged.”

The one that owned the most is the one that sins the most.  It is the one that suffers most of the consequences of his/her sins…the family broke up, loss of a job due to dysfunctional behavior caused by sins, ravaged by health problems due to promiscuous sex, and left alone.  He/she is the one most grateful for receiving forgiveness and acceptance in God’s family compared to those who have little consequences for their sins.  These are the ones that are rejected and set apart by some traditional denominations…they do not fit their mold.

Now let us put ‘grace and mercy’ in perspective in the Parable of the Talents Matt 25:14-16

Now according to these two parables, servants will have a greater return on the goods…forgiveness ‘mercy and grace’…they received?  Which one would actively forgive, showing mercy and grace to others?  The answer is, “the one that loves him more for receiving an abundance of His mercy and grace”, the one that appreciates more the gift of forgiveness.  That is according to his/her own ability to do the same.  Ability to do what?  It is in the ability to love as Jesus loved us…the ability to love Jesus by obeying His commandment to love, to do the same…got it?

This is how we obtain a return on the goods that we have received; “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy”, (Matt 5:7).  Paul expresses in his own Word the demonstration of love…grace, and mercy…defining the talents as ‘treasure in earthen vessels’ Read (2 Corinthians 4:7-15).  In v15, we see the return on our investment, “For all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God”.  How do we spread grace?  The message from the parable of the Good Samaritan is all about what we are to do with our talents  (love…grace and mercy).  “Then Jesus said to him, Go and do likewise (Luke 10:37).  Love is what we receive in goods.  For what purpose, “that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body” (2 Cor 4:10). 

Some have defined talents as God’s Words with good reason….  however, within the context of the New Covenant, love (koinonia) is more likely to be the right description of the symbol of talents. 

Micah 6:6-8 illustrates precisely, what Our Lord required from us, that is to love mercy over flavors:

“With what shall I come before the LORD,
And bow myself before the High God?
Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings,
With calves a year old?…Sunday after service barbecue…
Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams,
Ten thousand rivers of oil?…fund raising….
Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression,…donations…
The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?…service to the community…
He has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the LORD require of you
But to do justly
To love mercy,

And to walk humbly with your God

The Philadelphia church and the Thessalonians church had this in common.  They did not need to be taught.  To the Thessalonians church, Paul wrote:

“But concerning brotherly love you have no need that I should write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another; and indeed you do so toward all the brethren who are in all Macedonia.  But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; (1 Thess 4: 9-10).  To the Philadelphia church, Jesus stated:  “I know your works.  See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My Word, and have not denied My name, (Revelation 3:8).  Paul understood the importance of living in love between each other, “But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more”

We are to spread mercy and grace to all.  That is what sets Christians apart from this world.

Love in the form of mercy and grace is what we lose if not invested, separated from God forever.  “And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness.  There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”  (Matt 25:30).  The unfaithful servant was a hypocrite and a pretentious Christian.  He/she was a tare.  He/she did not accept Jesus' love in the form of grace and mercy, he/she buried it and, therefore never had the desire nor the intention to do the same to others.  They look and act like a gentile under the guise of Christianity but they are not saved.  They fail to apply love…mercy and grace.  So again, what are we to do with the tares in the church communities”?  Nothing.  It is not our business.  It is not for us to go on a witch-hunt to disclose them.  It is Jesus's business.  He only knows the heart.  Our business is to love in the form of grace and mercy.  We never know, we might even influence a tare to accept Jesus’ love.

Paul cautions the Corinthians to be aware of what is added to the cone and to the ice cream, (1 Corinthians 3:10b-15);

But let each one take heed how he builds on it.  For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.  Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw…all different kinds of flavours… each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is.  If anyone’s work, which he has built on, it endures, he will receive a reward.  If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” 

It is interesting to see that the result after being tested over what was built on Jesus is to receive a reward.  Salvation is not a reward.  We already acquired salvation through believing.  The reward is for those who have increased their talents even to a minimum.  To the ones who did not bury it. 

The fire that will test our love for Jesus and others is in our everyday life challenges.  How do we react toward diversities?  Do we still trust God?  How do we react toward someone who deliberately makes our life miserable?  Do we still act in love, mercy, and grace?  Do we forgive especially those in the family of God, our brothers and sisters in all denominations?  So, let us be conscious of what we put on the ice cream cone.  Our flavors hinder God’s works and hinder our understanding of His Word.  We live by His Word by being pure salt and a true lamp. 

(Philippians 1:27) 
"Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.”  

It is our conduct, by trusting Jesus and loving each other that makes an impact in society.  Here is a revelation for some; it is not a wide range of church activities that draw people to Jesus.  It is not by preaching moral values or the 10 commandments or of all the do’s and don’ts that draw people to God e.g. on how to keep the Sabbath, not to play cards, not to drink wine, not to wear make-up, these are personal flavors...  God’s kindness, grace, and mercy are what draw people to Him.

(Acts 2:46); 
“So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart.” 
With one accord by loving each other.

(2 Corinthians 1:12); 
For our boasting is this: the testimony of our conscience that we conducted ourselves in the world in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom but by the grace of God, and more abundantly toward you”.  Conducting ourselves in society in love, in grace, and in mercy.

In conclusion:

Pray for the unity of the Body of Christ, all the communities, and individuals who live according to the spirit of the Philadelphia church.  Let us be united; let us practice mercy, grace, and kindness toward each other even toward the tares…they are the ones that need it the most for no one taught them.  Let us “LOVE ONE ANOTHER”. 

Last Words

I know who I am because Jesus tells me so.  I am first and foremost a son of God, (Gal 3:26); my citizenship is in heaven, (Phil 3:20); I am neither Jew nor Greek, neither slave nor free, neither male nor female; for we are all one in Christ Jesus, (Gal 3:28), neither circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all, (Col 3:11); I am not of Paul, or I am not of Apollos, or I am not of Cephas, I am not of Christ, (1 Cor1:12-13); I will reign with Jesus, (2 Tim 2:12); I am a holy brethren and partakers of the heavenly calling, (Heb 3:1); I am free, (John 8:32), (Rom 6:22); hence, I know who I am and I know where I belong …in the body of Christ. Thank you, Father, thank you, Jesus, thank you Holy Spirit.

“Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work”, (not flavors)…(2 Thess 2:16-17).

References and reading suggestions:

·       The Case of the Sneaky Housewife, Series: Behind History, Author: Ray C.  Stedman at

·        “Keeping Ready for the Return of the Lord” by Lambert Dolphin at Dolphin from Lambert Dolphin’s Library

·       The Church At The End Of The Age” by Lambert Dolphin from Lambert Dolphin’s Library at

·       Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will be Done....  A book on prophecy by Ron Graff & Lambert Dolphin at   (It is a must-be read)

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Contact: Andre Delage, at