Friday, October 30, 2015


How many times have you recited the model prayer that the LORD used to teach the disciples how to pray and really thought about each phrase?  One of the first phrases in that prayer states, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.”  It’s an expression of one’s desire for Jesus to come and take His throne as King of kings and Lord of lords on the throne of David in Jerusalem.  When that time comes, Jesus will be the ruling authority over the whole planet according to His will, His law. Satan will be bound and not allowed to exert his influence as the god of this world as he does now. 

Revelation 19:11–16 “And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war….and his name is called The Word of God….And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”

When Jesus is on the throne, war will be a thing of the past.  Democracy will be a thing of the past.  Despotism will be a thing of the past.  Political correctness will be a thing of the past.   Manipulation of the masses will be a thing of the past.  Abortion and murder will not be tolerated.  Fornication and homosexuality will not be tolerated or celebrated.  Scientists will no longer be able to “play god” with the building blocks of life in defiance of the LORD’s created order.  False religions will not be tolerated.  Entertainment will not be allowed to target man’s lust or violence or wicked imaginations of any kind.

The rule of Jesus will be characterized by righteousness, truth and love that will result in true justice without regard to person or position.  He will rule with a rod of iron according to the law of God. The commandments of God will be honored and respected.  The sanctity of marriage between a man and woman will be restored.  Public prayer will be accepted and supported.

In the Messianic kingdom the nations will experience a time of peace and safety such as never before experienced since man chose to sin in Eden.  Israel will be exalted among the nations.  The weapons of war will be destroyed.

Micah 4:1–4 “But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it. And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts hath spoken it.”

The LORD will bring about a great change in the animal kingdom, and man and animal will live in harmony with one another.  Longevity of life will return.  Harvests will be bountiful.  Prosperity will abound.

Isaiah 11:6–9 “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.”

Personally, I can’t wait.  I am so looking forward to His return and to see the fulfillment of every prophecy recorded in His word.  Even as I am eager for His return, I tremble for those I love and care about who do not truly know Jesus as Lord and Savior.  I am so thankful that the LORD is patient and giving them every chance to turn to Him in faith and repentance.

2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

While we await His return, Peter urges those of us who are indwelt by the Spirit to live so as to be ready to face Him without shame.

Romans 8:9 “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.”

2 Peter 3:14 “Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.”

Dear LORD, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.”

Friday, October 16, 2015


I am currently doing a study of the book of Judges.  This morning I was in chapter 17, the story of Micah, a man that I think is a perfect example of how many approach a relationship with “God” today.  I hope that the truth of this chapter will cause you to examine your relationship with the LORD.  We are not promised tomorrow you know.

Proverbs 27:1 “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.”

James 4:14 “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.”

Judges 17:1 ¶ And there was a man of mount Ephraim, whose name was Micah.
Judges 17:2 And he said unto his mother, The eleven hundred shekels of silver that were taken from thee, about which thou cursedst, and spakest of also in mine ears, behold, the silver is with me; I took it. And his mother said, Blessed be thou of the LORD, my son.
Judges 17:3 And when he had restored the eleven hundred shekels of silver to his mother, his mother said, I had wholly dedicated the silver unto the LORD from my hand for my son, to make a graven image and a molten image: now therefore I will restore it unto thee.
Judges 17:4 Yet he restored the money unto his mother; and his mother took two hundred shekels of silver, and gave them to the founder, who made thereof a graven image and a molten image: and they were in the house of Micah.

This chapter centers on a man named Micah that lived in mount Ephraim.  He stole from his mother and heard her utter a curse against the thief.  He admitted to his mom that he had stolen the 1100 shekels of silver and gave it back to her.  I guess he was superstitious and feared the consequences of the curse.

The NIV Commentary notes that ten shekels was a normal wage for the year at that time, so the money stolen represented great wealth.

The mother blessed her son in the name of the LORD for returning it, but then proceeded to use 200 shekels of the silver to have an idol made.  The image was carved out of wood and dipped in silver or gold.  Micah kept it in his house.

It is interesting to note that the mother said that she had “wholly dedicated” the stolen money to the LORD, but she only invested a small portion of it to honor the god she worshipped.

Judges 17:5 And the man Micah had an house of gods, and made an ephod, and teraphim, and consecrated one of his sons, who became his priest.
Judges 17:6 In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

Micah had a place in his house specifically set apart as a place of worship.  He made an ephod, a sacred garment similar to that used by the high priest, and brought in some other idols to add to his collection.  He then consecrated one of his sons as his priest.

It is noted that there was no king in Israel at that time.  We know, however, that they did have a king—the LORD God of Israel.  They just did not recognize Him as such.

Then the sad refrain that will be repeated several times—“but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” 

What Micah did was a perfect example of that truth.  The LORD had given Israel a whole set of laws designating the acceptable way to worship and honor Him, the one true God.  Micah totally disregarded God’s word and decided that he would do things his own way. 

Most of the people in the world today align themselves with Micah.  They refuse to believe that there is only one true God that reigns over heaven and earth.  They believe that they can choose to worship who they want, when they want, how they want and still expect to be received into heaven or an eternal state of bliss or whatever.  They are in for such a shock if they don’t repent of their sins and turn to Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior!  God has declared that there is only one way to get to enjoy eternal life in His presence—through the gift of salvation that is only available through faith in His Son.

John 3:16–18 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

Acts 4:12 “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Ephesians 2:8–9 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

I am reminded of the words of Solomon.

Proverbs 14:12 “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”

Judges 17:7 ¶ And there was a young man out of Bethlehemjudah of the family of Judah, who was a Levite, and he sojourned there.
Judges 17:8 And the man departed out of the city from Bethlehemjudah to sojourn where he could find a place: and he came to mount Ephraim to the house of Micah, as he journeyed.
Judges 17:9 And Micah said unto him, Whence comest thou? And he said unto him, I am a Levite of Bethlehemjudah, and I go to sojourn where I may find a place.
Judges 17:10 And Micah said unto him, Dwell with me, and be unto me a father and a priest, and I will give thee ten shekels of silver by the year, and a suit of apparel, and thy victuals. So the Levite went in.
Judges 17:11 And the Levite was content to dwell with the man; and the young man was unto him as one of his sons.

One day a young man from Bethlehemjudah who was a Levite that lived in the tribal territory of Judah came to mount Ephraim.  He ended up at the house of Micah.  Micah asked him were he was from, and the young man told him; he added that he was looking for a new place to live.  Micah offered to pay him ten shekels of silver a year and provide clothing and food if he would stay with him and serve as his father, his spiritual head, and priest.  So the young man agreed.  He stayed and became like a son to Micah.

Even though the young man was a Levite, he apparently had no qualms about disregarding God’s law.

Judges 17:12 And Micah consecrated the Levite; and the young man became his priest, and was in the house of Micah.
Judges 17:13 Then said Micah, Now know I that the LORD will do me good, seeing I have a Levite to my priest.

Micah then consecrated the Levite, and the young man became his priest.  (I wonder what became of his son.)  Micah thought he had assured himself of God’s blessing since he now had a Levite as his priest.  This actually testifies further to the fact that he knew he was acting in disobedience to God’s command.

Micah actually brought to my mind thoughts of people I love who claim to know Jesus as their LORD and Savior, yet think that as long as they are kind and do good things for others and mind their own business, that is honoring God and is enough to expect His blessing.  I hope they aren’t deceiving themselves.   True faith will give evidence to the work of the Holy Spirit in one’s life.  It will evidence a desire to know God’s word and to please Him by what we do and say because we love Him.  God’s word tells us that our love is proven through obedience.

John 14:23 “Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.”

1 John 5:3 “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.”

Monday, October 5, 2015


These verses came to mind this morning as I was thinking about something to share with you.

Matthew 24:37–42 “But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.”

These verses continue to remind me that the coming of my LORD is very near.  The days of Noah were days in which no one suspected that something disastrous was about to happen.  The days of Noah are noted as days when the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” (Genesis 6:5)

These truths are so intertwined with my thoughts about our nation and the world today, that I am looking for the LORD to come and take all true believers home at any moment. 

The context of the scripture precludes the reference being to the return of Jesus as King of kings to set up His kingdom on earth.  Things on earth will in no way be comparable to life as usual at that time in light of all the judgments detailed in the book of Revelation as preceding that moment.  It is not a time when only certain people will disappear (“be taken”) and others left behind. 

The time when Jesus returns to set up His kingdom is identified as 1260 days after the Antichrist declares himself to be God and establishes his throne in the temple of God.  This is a time that can be marked on the calendar—not a time in which “you do not know what hour.”

2 Thessalonians 2:3–4 “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.”

(If you need more explanation, see the commentary on 2Thessalonians 2 and Revelation 13 on my website.)

The “wickedness of man” and “evil” are identified in accordance with God’s truth as defined in scripture.  It seems that today such wickedness and evil are far more readily embraced as the norm and as acceptable behavior than ever before—certainly in our nation’s history. 

Noah is identified in the word of God as a preacher of righteousness…

2 Peter 2:4–5 “…God…spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly….”

…a voice that the people of his day chose to reject.  So today, there are still some powerful voices of testimony to the truth striving to be heard; but, as a whole, the people of our nation and the world are choosing to reject that truth and embrace the ways of the “god of this world.”

2 Corinthians 4:3–4 “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”

1 John 2:16 “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.”

Galatians 5:19–21 “Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like….”

I pray that you are in the camp of believers that are waiting with expectation for His return.   As we wait, please remember that the LORD warned us that we would suffer tribulation.

John 16:33 “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”

So when we process the news about people who identify themselves as Christians, as followers of Jesus, who are persecuted and even killed for their faith, we need to stand strong in the faith.  Paul encouraged the church at Thessalonica in the same way. 

1 Thessalonians 3:3–4 “…that no one should be shaken by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we are appointed to this. For, in fact, we told you before when we were with you that we would suffer tribulation….”

We need to pray that in some way their testimonies will be used to bring others to faith.  The promises we should cling to are that the LORD is working everything for good that touches the lives of those that love Him and that we aren’t meant to understand why He allows these things.

Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”

Isaiah 55:8–9 ““For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.”

We are to focus on the truth that His grace is sufficient for whatever we may face in the future and that the death of a believer only results in the blessing of being in His presence.

2 Corinthians 12:9 “…My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.”

2 Corinthians 5:6–8 “So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”

Come Lord Jesus!