DIG for Monday the 20th of April…..time to repent (change your mind)…..Hebrews 10 v 12

My Bible flopped open at Hebrews chapter 10 this morning; I wanted to read some of the Word before I headed out for a very busy day.

Hebrews 10 is one of my favourite and most encouraging passages of Scripture and I was not surprised that it opened there.

Hebrews chapter 10 reminds us that Jesus has dealt with ALL our sin; He paid for it ONCE and now ALL our sin has been paid for.

Jesus paid for all our faults and inadequacies, all our errors and shortcomings ONCE.

He is now seated at the right hand of the Father with His work finished.

I think we all need to be reminded of that once in a while.

We can easily slip into condemnation and give ourselves a hard time over what we se as our faults and shortcomings.

Last night it was pointed out to me (very gently) by a very dear sister, that I seemed to be pouring condemnation on myself for something I thought was not good.

I was reminded that Jesus has paid for ALL my faults and iniquities, and that God has chosen not to remember them (Hebrews 10 v 17).

Was it not about time that I gave myself some leeway? Was it not about time that I repented (changed my mind) and moved on?

I would suggest that we all have things that we are not happy about in our lives; certain behaviours or faults that we allow ourselves to be condemned over.

This morning the Lord is telling you that His Son has paid for ALL those faults and that He has chosen not to remember them.

He is telling you to stop this cycle of condemnation and guilt, telling you to repent (change your mind) and move forward in your life, concentrating on His Son and not on your sin.

Moving forward looking to Him, and not looking back, will help you move away form these faults and behaviours.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord for the finished work of Jesus Christ, and thank you that all my sin has been dealt with once and for ever”.

Hebrews 10 v 12…..But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God

DIG for Tuesday the 21st of April….build up a brother or sister today…..1 Thessalonians 5 v 11

I received a message on Facebook from a brother in America the other day, it is written below.

“Vic, though we have never met face to face, your posts and positive words about life in general are inspiring to me. Thanks! I am praying blessings for you!”

I have to say that this really encouraged and edified me.

Sometimes in ministry you are really not sure how effective or helpful you are being; I am sure it is the same in most areas of life.

Generally we seem to think that if no one is complaining then things are going reasonably OK.

However it is really nice every now and again, for someone to give you positive feedback, or to show some appreciation.

“Thank you” and “you are doing well” are words that build people up and encourage them, and are phrases that are not used often enough today.

I know how I felt reading those positive comments, and I am going to try and edify and build up people more going forward.

How about you?

Is there someone in your life who deserves a “thank you” or “I really appreciate what you are doing”?

Is there someone you can help to build up today with words of light, life and positivity?

The words we speak over people are important, having creative power to be positive or negative.

Be positive and edify someone today.

Speak this out…..”Thank you Lord that you have made our words creative and powerful, help me edify and build someone up today”.

1 Thessalonians 5 v 11…..Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do

DIG for Sunday the 19th of April…..spiritual laws work even if we don’t agree with them…..Proverbs 18 v 21

The Lord is sovereign in this world in that He set up spiritual laws and rules that “govern” things. (He is not sovereign in that He has control over all that occurs as taught by Calvinist doctrine).

Just as gravity is a physical law and is always on, there are spiritual laws that are always on.

If I jumped off a building and said, “I do not agree with gravity and I will not partake in it today”, you would think I was crazy.

This is of course crazy, as is someone else saying, “I do not believe that my words or thoughts are that important”.

There is a saying that many people seem to believe in; sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me.

The words that we say are very important; what we say about ourselves, and also what we say about others.

All of our words have creative power, and they can be used for good or for evil.

Death and life (evil and good) are on the power of the tongue is what the Bible says.

This is a spiritual law, set in place by God for our good.

We can “use” this spiritual law in a negative way however and work evil in our life and in the lives of others.

The creative power of all our words is never switched off.

It is a spiritual truth that is always on!

What we say (and therefore what we think) is of the utmost importance for us and for those we influence.

Speak out positive words, good words, words of encouragement and edification.

As my Mum used to say, “If you have nothing good to say, then don’t say anything”.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord for the creative power of our words, thank you for this spiritual law that you have put in place for our help”.

Proverbs 18 v 21…..Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof

DIG for Saturday the 18th of April…..He is the only way to life, anything else is just an existence…..John 20 v 31

Many times I see people with things going wrong in their lives, chaos all around them, and think, “How can they live like that?”

What I have come to realise is that for many people today there is no life; what they have is an existence.

Life in the Biblical context is health and wholeness, joy and peace, abundance and prosperity.

This can only be achieved through faith in Jesus Christ; anything else is not life.

Jesus came that we might have life, and have that life in abundance (John 10 v 10).

He came that we might live in health and prosperity (3 John 2).

This type of life is only available through believing on and in Him (John 20 v 31).

Anything without Jesus is not life.

People may say, well I’m having a great life without Jesus thank you very much!

I don’t believe that, it is a lie.

We often hear of rich and famous people talking about having something missing, about something not right in their life.

Life is only available through faith in Jesus.

Faith in Jesus will bring all that is required for an abundant life, with anything else just being a temporary existence.

Speak this out today….”Thank you Lord that through faith in Jesus I have been given an abundant life as a gift of grace”.

John 20 v 31…..But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God,; and that believing ye might have life through his name

DIG for Friday the 17th of April…..of course He was dead…..John 19 v 34

There are no words in Scripture by mistake; they all have a purpose and meaning for being there.

So why did the writer of the Gospel of John say that blood and water flowed from Jesus when He was pierced by the soldier’s sword? (John 19 v 34)

Well, I believe it was written to show us that Jesus really was dead.

There is one “theory” that has been around for a long time that says Jesus just fainted on the cross and then “came to” in the cool of the tomb.

This is of course nonsense, but believed and used by some to say that Jesus did not die and therefore was not raised from the dead.

When a person dies the blood starts to separate out into the constituent parts, with the red blood cells separating from the plasma (there is a technical term for this but I cannot remember it and don’t feel like searching the internet for it!).

This would give an effect of looking like blood and water, or blood and a clear liquid.

This is also caused by heart failure, something that may have been the ultimate cause of the death of Jesus.

Whatever, when Jesus’ side was pierced there flowed out blood and water, a clear indication that He was dead.

Of course Jesus died, that was part of His mission.

He came to die and came to be raised again!

He did die and He was raised again and He is now ascended and seated at the right hand of the Father with His work finished.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Father that Jesus came and that Jesus died, paying the price for all my sin”.

John 19 v 34…..But one of the soldiers pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water

DIG for Thursday the 16th of April…..if we listen we will hear…..John 10 v 27

Many people have said to me that they cannot hear from God; as much as they try they think that God is not speaking to them.

This is not the truth.

The truth is that God is always speaking to us; the truth is that we are not listening or not hearing.

In John 10 Jesus talks about sheep and shepherds.

He is the shepherd and we, as believers, are His sheep.

He says that the sheep hear His voice and follow Him (John 10 v 27).

From this we can be assured that Jesus is therefore talking to us; He has to be talking for us to hear and follow.

Sheep get to know their shepherd through time, by listening to him and being around him.

Another reason for us not hearing from the Lord is because we are not spending time with Him.

The more we are in His presence, the more we will listen, hear and recognise His voice.

Quantity of time as well as quality time is required with the Lord; giving the Lord a few minutes when we get up and a few minutes before we go to bed is not enough time to develop a relationship to the extent that we can hear from Him.

I say this with all due respect, but it is the truth; if you are not hearing from God it is not for His want of trying, it is your fault for not listening or hearing!

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that you are talking to us constantly, help me to enter into Jesus’ rest in order to listen, hear and follow”.

John 10 v 27…..My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me

DIG for Wednesday the 15th of April…..this is a very important question……Psalm 139 v 14

I want to ask you a very important question this morning; then I want you to be very honest with yourself, think it over and come up with an answer.

“How do you see yourself?”

This is a fundamental question that will affect how you live your life.

The second question I want to ask you is this, “do you see yourself as God sees you?”

In order to see how God sees you, you need to look into His Word.

God says that He created you and that you are wonderful (Psalm 139 v 14).

God says that you are a new creature, that you have been reconciled to him and that you are righteous (2 Corinthians 5 v 17 to 21).

God says that He has blessed you and given you all that you need for life and godliness (Ephesians 1 v 3 and 2 Peter 1 v 3).

God says that you have been adopted into His family (Ephesians 1 v 5).

God say that He accepts you (Ephesians 1 v 6).

God says that you have unconditional and complete forgiveness for all your sin (Ephesians 1 v 7 and Colossians 1 v 14).

God says that He loves you and sent Jesus for you (1 John 4 v 10).

God says that you are holy and that you are a saint (Ephesians 4 v 24)

We will have more success in life and in our Christian walk if we believe what God says about us rather than what the world says.

The Word is full of truths about you; full of truths about what Jesus has done for you and full of truths about what God thinks of you.

Let the Word of God influence you and change the way you view yourself.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that you see me as holy, righteous, forgiven and accepted”.

Psalm 139 v 14…..I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well

DIG for Tuesday the 14th of April…..don’t let the unbelief of others stop you…..Mark 6 v 5 and 6

Jesus was limited by what He could do sometimes because of the unbelief of others; the same will happen to us.

At the start of the sixth chapter of Mark we see Jesus trying to minister to the people of his “own country”.

Because of the unbelief of the people Jesus was not seeing as many miracles, signs and wonders as “normal”.

This was nothing to do with Jesus and nothing to do with God; Jesus and God always want to see people healed (3 John 2).

This did not stop Jesus though.

He managed to heal some people and then went on his way, teaching in other places and to other people.

We must do the same as Jesus if we are seeing the same thing.

We are living in a day when there is more unbelief than ever before.

The media blasts us with unbelief all day and every day, and parts of the church even speak out unbelief about healing, prosperity and the miraculous.

We are to lay hands on the sick in order to see them healed (Mark 16 v 18).

We are to speak out healing and wholeness over people in order to see their lives changed (Proverbs 18 v 21 and Matthew 21 v 21).

If we do not see healing every time we must carry on, we cannot stop!

Don’t let doubt and fear creep in if you are not seeing results 100% of the time.

Use the example of Jesus and carry on trying to teach and help people; don’t let the doubt and unbelief of others get you down.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that by the authority of Jesus and through the power of the Holy Spirit I can lay my hands on the sick and see them healed”.

Mark 6 v 5 and 6…..And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them. And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round the villages, teaching

DIG for Monday the 13th of April…..what is truth…..John 18 v 38

Pilate is an interesting man, being at the centre of the account of the crucifixion and death of Jesus.

He makes some very interesting remarks, including the exchange that we see in John’s Gospel.

In chapter 18 and verse 38 he asks a question that man has asked for thousands of years and is still asking today, “what is truth?”

Then Pilate stated one of the most important truths in the history of mankind, “I find in him no fault” (John 18 v 38).

In stating this he is almost being prophetic, giving us a picture or type or shadow of the perfection of Jesus.

He stated that Jesus was perfect; this is an awesome and essential truth about Jesus.

When he said this I wonder if any of the Jews let their mind wander back to when Jesus was baptised, when John the Baptist had called him the Lamb of God.

Jesus was the sacrificial lamb that would be sacrificed for the sins of the whole world, and like every other sacrificial lamb before Him He was spotless, perfect and pure, or in other words He had no faults.

He was not only perfect but He was truth; truth and grace came by Jesus Christ (John 1 v 17).

Pilate asked what truth was yet did not recognise that truth, and that perfection, when it stood right in front of him.

Jesus was and is truth, Jesus was and is perfect, and Jesus was and is the salvation of the world!

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Father God for Jesus and for His finished work that brings salvation to all who accept Him”.

John 18 v 38…..Pilate said unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault at all

DIG for Sunday the 12th of April….we choose who we let influence us…..Proverbs 23 v 7

We had a great message at MGF today highlighting the fact that we were created to be influenced by God.

We were created to learn and increase our understanding about the Lord.

It is very important to say however that if God is not influencing us then someone or something else will take that place.

As with everything else in this Christian life we are responsible what we are influenced by.

We choose who we listen to, we choose what we read, we choose what we watch, we choose who we interact with and come into fellowship with; in other words we choose who we give the opportunity to influence us.

We should submit to God and let Him influence us; this does not give the enemy a chance (James 4 v 7).

Whatever influences us will alter the way we think and alter what we believe about ourselves.

As Christians it is our responsibility to believe what the Word of God says and let that influence us.

We are special and unique and there is a plan for our lives; that is what the Word of God says and that is what we should let influence us.

Stop listening to the “doom and gloom merchants” and start listening to God through His Word.

Stop letting “Mr and Mrs Negative” have space in your head and give that space instead to a God who loves you, desires you and wants the best for you.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that you love me, want to spend time with me and want to influence me with Your truth”.

Proverbs 23 v 7…..For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he……