DIG for Tuesday the 22nd of July…..what an amazing encounter with Jesus…..John 4 v 25 and 26

•July 22, 2014 • Leave a Comment

We see many people having wonderful encounters with Jesus as we read through the Gospels; my favourite is in John 4 where He encounters the Samaritan woman at the well.

There are many things we can learn from this encounter but I think the most important is the change that we see in the woman after meeting Jesus.

Before her encounter she was a woman driven by shame, not coming out to get water until after all the other woman had returned home (it was the sixth hour or six hours after day break).

In the eyes of society she was a very wicked woman as she was both an adulteress and a fornicator.

Yet after meeting Jesus she changed; she suddenly became an evangelist, going into town and speaking to the men about Jesus.

She changed after understanding that Jesus was the Christ, that He was the Messiah.

You may not realise the extent of the change, going from a woman who hid herself away due to shame to a woman speaking in public and preaching the Good News.

This is a phenomenal change.

For the woman having a meeting with Jesus was a life-changing encounter, and the same is true for us too.

When we encounter Jesus and are born again we are completely changed; our old spirit man dies and a new born again spirit comes into being.

This spirit is righteousness and truly holy and absolutely perfect (Ephesians 4 v 23).

What a phenomenal change, going from an old spirit driven by sin to a new spirit driven by righteousness and holiness.

Just like the Samaritan woman at the well we have also been changed by our encounter with Jesus.

After encountering Jesus and understanding that He is the Messiah people will never be the same again.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord for Jesus and thank you for my life changing encounter with Him”.

John 4 v 25 and 26…..The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he

DIG for Monday the 21st of July…..with our eyes on Jesus we can walk on top of any storm…..Matthew 14 v 29

•July 21, 2014 • Leave a Comment

The disciples were afraid, they were panicking, the boat was being pounded by the storm and there was a real chance that it would sink (Matthew 14 v 2 to 26).

Then Jesus came and told them to cheer up as He was now with them (Matthew 14 v 27).

We then see Peter and Jesus talking, which resulted in Peter getting out of the boat and going to Jesus.

At this point Peter was walking on the water, over the crashing waves, the spray and the boisterous seas; in one sense he was walking on top of the storm.

With his eyes on Jesus, on his Lord, Peter was able to walk on water and overcome the storm.

However at some point he took his eyes off Jesus looking at the storm instead and started to sink (Matthew 14 v 30).

He saw the storm about him and became afraid and this was when he started to get into trouble.

We can learn from this account when we are in a storm.

The key is to focus on Jesus, to look to Jesus, to look to spiritual truths.

What will cause us to fear is looking at the physical circumstances in the storm or by focussing on what our flesh is saying.

Yes we should be aware of what is happening but we should not let that be the focus of our thinking.

If we keep our eyes on Jesus we will be able to overcome and walk over the storm; we will be able to resist and fight and get that storm under our feet.

Are you in a storm today?

If you are then keep your eyes fixed on Jesus and that will help you to overcome your storm and walk on water.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I can look to Jesus and to His finished work to bring me strength through the storm”.

Matthew 14 v 19…..And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus

DIG for Sunday the 20th of July…..cheer up; you have so much to be thankful for so cheer up…..Matthew 9 v 2

•July 20, 2014 • Leave a Comment

In my message today I spoke about Paul telling the crew of a sinking ship to ”cheer up”; and I went on to tell the fellowship that one thing they should, and could do in a storm, is to cheer up.

It sounds really silly to say this in a time of extreme hardship and concern, yet this is clearly what Paul said (Acts 27 v 22).

Paul could do this as he knew and understood a spiritual truth that would eclipse the physical facts; God had told him that he would reach Rome and He also told him that not a single person would die from the ship.

Even in our storm we can cheer up because we have been told some amazing spiritual truths that can make any storm pale into insignificance.

Jesus told the sick man to cheer up as all his sins had been forgiven (Matthew 9 v 2); all our sins have also been forgiven.

Jesus told His disciples in the sinking boat to cheer up as He was now with them (Matthew 14 v 27); through His Holy Spirit Jesus is now with us and in us.

Jesus told His disciples on the eve of the worst day of their lives to cheer up as He was a world overcomer (John 16 v 23); because we have His Spirit in us we are now world overcomers.

My friend, it does not matter what storm you are in today, you can cheer up.

You have been forgiven, you have the Living God dwelling within you, and because of that you are a world overcomer; that is surely more than enough to rejoice in and cheer yourself up.

If that is not enough you have been accepted by God (Ephesians 1 v 6), adopted by God (Ephesians 1 v 5), been reconciled to God (2 Corinthians 5 v 18 and 19), been redeemed by God (Galatians 3 v 13) and been made righteous by God (2 Corinthians 5 v 21).

Now can you choose to cheer up?

The choice is yours.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I can choose to cheer up because of what you have done for me and to me through the finished work of Jesus Christ”.

Matthew 9 v 2…..And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee

DIG for Saturday the 19th of July…..do you realise how important we are to this world…..Philippians 1 v 23 and 24

•July 19, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Paul talks in this passage of Scripture about wanting to go to be with the Lord but knowing that he needs to stay on earth for the present.

He wants to get to heaven, but knows he has a purpose on earth and needs to stay for the good of others.

In this case it was for the good of the church at Philippi.

My friend, do you know the same is true for you and me; it would be much better to be in heaven with Jesus however we have a purpose on earth and need to stay and fulfil that calling.

It is not arrogant to say that Christians are essential on this earth and we need to be here.

Jesus said we are the salt of the earth (Matthew 5 v 13).

Jesus said we are the light of the world (Matthew 5 v 14).

Without light there would be no life on earth; plants need light to produce sugars thorough photosynthesis and this is the basis of all food on earth.

Without salt all animals would die; we all need salt in our bodies to allow our nervous systems to pass electrical signals correctly for example.

Physical life is impossible without salt and light; and true spiritual life is impossible without Jesus.

And who will tell a needy world about Jesus if we do not?

We are essential on this earth.

We have a job to do.

We are ambassadors for Jesus (2 Corinthians 5 v 20) and we are here (or rather one of the reasons we are here) is to tell people about our Lord and Master.

The world needs you my friend; your family, friends, schoolmates or work colleagues need you.

You are salt and light to may people around you even if you do note realise it at the moment; to many people you may be the only exposure that they have to Jesus.

Shine my brothers and sisters and be the salt to this needy world.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I have many purposes in this world, and one is to be salt and light”.

Philippians 1 v 23 and 24…..For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you

DIG for Friday the 18th of July….the ransom has been paid, we are now free…..Romans 3 v 24

•July 19, 2014 • Leave a Comment

I have been thinking about the word redeemed today.

I was given a thank you card after preaching at an event on Saturday night that used the word redeemed and I met the artist who actually made the card this morning in Costa.

We spoke about the card and that got my mind onto redeemed.

The root word for redeemed (and its other derivatives) is agorazo, which literally means to go to market and by implication to purchase.

When we read that we have been redeemed or that we have redemption it really means that we have been purchased or bought; that we have had a ransom paid for our freedom.

This is a wonderful concept; that we were once slaves to sin and death but have now been bought, had a ransom paid, so that we can live in freedom.

Once a person has been freed with a ransom they do not go back to their slavery or bondage.

The Word says that we have been redeemed (or purchased or ransomed) from the curse of the law (Galatians 3 v 13).

We should therefore not return to this and try to live by the law, we have been freed from this and now live under grace (Galatians 5 v 1 and Romans 6 v 14 and 15).

Through the finished work of Jesus Christ we have been redeemed; his blood has purchased us and we now have forgiveness (Ephesians 1 v 7 and Colossians 1 v 14).

The ransom has been paid to free us form the slavery of sin and death and we are now “slaves” to forgiveness, righteousness, mercy, love and abundance.

We have the fullness of God and all His blessings dwelling within us because of the work of Jesus as a gift of grace.

We would be crazy to try and return to live under the law.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I have been redeemed through the finished work of Jesus Christ and the shedding of His blood”.

Romans 3 v 24…..Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus

 

DIG for Thursday the 17th of July…..He does not want our efforts, works or self-righteousness…..Exodus 20 v 25

•July 17, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Some of what we read in the Old Testament can be quite cryptic, take for example the account where God wanted an alter built with unworked stone (Exodus 20 v 25).

Why did God ask for this?

He asked for this as it was a picture (or type or shadow) of self-effort and self-righteousness; the very thing that God does not want from us.

God wanted an alter made from stone that He had created; he did not want anything that had been worked on my man.

He did not want man trying to improve upon His workmanship.

This is a picture of what the Lord wants from us.

He made us righteous as a gift of grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5 v 21).

He does not want us to try and be right before Him with our own works, efforts and self-righteousness.

He does not want us to think we have to improve our “religious performance” to be made more righteous.

This is like taking what God has done through Jesus and trying to make it better.

This is like saying Jesus has not done enough and I need to do more.

It is like asking God for forgiveness when we have already been forgiven through the shed blood of Jesus (Ephesians 1 v 7 and Colossians 1 v 14).

God has already forgiven us and does not want or need us to ask for forgiveness; we cannot improve on what He has done already through Jesus Christ.

I have a small piece of rock from a local hill called Benrinnes and it is just marvellous the way it is, I don’t think I could do anything to improve it.

In terms of my forgiveness and my righteousness there is nothing I can do to improve what God has done and made me through the finished work of Jesus Christ.

God wants us to build our life and Christian walk upon an understanding of what He has done and what He has made us; he does not want or need us trying to improve what He has already done with our own religious works and self-righteousness.

Enjoy what He has done and enjoy what He has made you.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I have been forgiven and made righteous because of what you have already done through Jesus Christ”.

Exodus 20 v 25…..And if thou wilt make me an alter of stone, thou shalt not build it of hewn stone: for if thou lift up thy tool upon it, thou hast polluted it

DIG for Wednesday the 16th of July…..if you want to reap it, you had better sow it…..Galatians 6 v 7

•July 16, 2014 • Leave a Comment

If you want to get a crop of tatties in your garden you would be stupid to sow barley seeds.

If you were a farmer wanting a crop of wheat you would be a nut job to sow oats.

There is a natural law that says you will reap what you sow, and there is the same law in the spiritual realm.

If we sow love we will reap love, and if we sow hatred we will reap hatred.

Paul wrote to the Galatians and told them that they would reap what they sowed (Galatians 6 v 7).

He told them not to be deceived or to be in error and think that this law would not work for them.

The law of sowing and reaping is a universal law that God has placed in this world and works for every single person.

I have had people say to me “Vic, I have no friends, what should I do?”

My reply always is “well, find some people and be friendly”.

If you want people to love you, go out and love them.

If you think people are being judgemental and rude to you, well my friend, you are more than likely being rude and judgemental yourself.

What you sow you will reap; that is a natural and spiritual law.

Take the realm of finance for an example; the law of sowing and reaping would say that if you need more finances or money, then give some away.

The world would say save as much as you can and cut down on your spending in order to have more money; but the way of the world is not the way of the Lord.

I know it sounds daft but there is nothing daft about the law of sowing and reaping, if you want more finances for your ministry for example go and give more money to another ministry.

The law of sowing and reaping works, I suggest that you give it a try.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord for the law of sowing and reaping, and thank you that I can participate in this in a good way right now”.

Galatians 6 v 7…..Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap

 
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