Saturday, March 22, 2014

NOAH....Missing the Point!

The new Noah movie is said to be about environmentalism. Bill Mar says it is about mass murder. The Bible says its about rejecting God and God dealing with mankind's sin by an act of Grace in allowing people to start over the human race.  People do not want to acknowledge God or true righteousness or His Justice or His Mercy because they would the have to admit their own sin and accept that He alone can wash it away and forgive them. Real Justice would requires a penalty for sin and rebellion and God sent Jesus to pay that penalty..

Environmentalism is not our original purpose or primary responsibility. God made us to Have fellowship with Him. Our responsibility to Reign on Earth was training to reign with Him for eternity. When we abdicated our Reign and authority to Satan by choosing to believe him and not God we brought sin and corruption into the world and it corrupted all of creation. Our own DNA and understanding of who we were created to be has been corrupted.

While God does not want us to needlessly harm His creation it can not and will not be healed or restored until the new Heaven and Earth. So Our purpose is one of reconciling people to God and Growing in our walk with Him as we Advance His Kingdom in the Earth among all peoples. Caring for the Earth and all life on it is a responsibility but not our purpose.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Amazing Christian

In the introduction to the book, " LIVING AS A CHRISTIAN" by A.W. Tozer, James Snyder gives us the following start to this study on 1st Peter. 

"What is a Christian?  The contemporary scene is flooded with all kinds of erroneous ideas of what it means to be a Christian, most taken from the culture around us.  For some, the Christian is simply a cleaned-up person trying to do the best he can.  Some have crafted a template into which they try to squeeze the Christian.  But the Christian does not fit, and the result is a caricature, without any power or authority.

In this book, Dr. Tozer is writing to the Christian whose love and affection for Christ is the all-consuming passion of his life . . . every day.  He is not writing about the carnal Christian who has not surrendered himself to Christ’s rule in his life.  Throughout this book, he makes one assumption: that he is talking to someone who has experienced a genuine conversion experience.  He insists that we must have the utmost confidence in our conversion experience and trust the Holy Spirit to guide us day by day in the way that brings the most glory to the Christ who died for us.  Tozer begins where most writers end.  To him, conversion is not the end but rather the beginning of a wonderful walk of faith and trust and, yes, of works.

It was interesting to me to see Dr. Tozer’s comment about Hebrews 11.  Most of us look at that as the “faith chapter” of the Bible, but Tozer, in his inimitable way, calls it the “works chapter.”  Faith without works is dead, and there has to be a balance between what we believe and what we live.  Nobody can walk far on only one foot—we need the balance of both feet, and Dr. Tozer gives us quite a spiritual balance as he describes from God’s Word what the Christian walk is all about.

Certainly, we need to celebrate what we have been saved from.  That should bring to us a great deal of praise and thanksgiving that God has saved us from a life of wretchedness.  But, more important, we need to celebrate what we have been saved unto.  The Christian walk is the forward walk.  It is the “looking unto Jesus” that is most important.  Every redeemed person has a specific destiny to fulfill.  Discovering that destiny and fulfilling it in the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit is the joy of the Christian’s daily walk.

We must start with Christ, continue with Christ and, finally, end with Christ.  It is always Jesus Christ, our all in all; anything outside of Christ is not part of the Christian’s life and walk.

Throughout the book, Dr. Tozer spends time developing the theme of salvation as God’s master plan for man.  The preciousness of God’s plan of salvation reveals the value He places on man.  Salvation is not a casual thing to God, and should not be thought of carelessly by us.  To use a favorite Tozer illustration, it is not put a nickel in the slot, pull the lever, take a box of salvation and then go your separate way.  Rather, what salvation does to the person who embraces Jesus Christ is nothing short of revolutionary, and his walk from that moment on is nothing short of miraculous.

This amazing Christian is the reflection of salvation’s glory in the world around him.  Not only is salvation a precious and wonderful thing, but also so is the Christian.  Salvation is not an end in itself, but rather a plan for man to get back into the center of God’s love and favor.  Everything about the Christian reflects the glory of his salvation.  All heaven looks with pride upon this curious creature called a Christian.

This Christian can withstand anything that comes against him, including heresy of all kinds that have infested the Church from the beginning.  Tozer describes these heresies and how the Christian rises above them, including the blatant attack of Christianity’s archenemy the devil.  It also includes the Christian’s attitude toward persecution and suffering for the cause of Christ.  This remarkable Christian is in the world, but he is not of it.  Therefore, how he lives in front of the unsaved is crucial.

Because of the Christian’s position in Christ, seated in the heavenlies, no matter what befalls, he is above all harm and can rest in the security of Jesus Christ, the victor.  Dr. Tozer says, “No one, no thing, no circumstance can harm a good man.”  This “good man” is immortal, and when his destiny on earth has been completed, his destiny continues in what he has inherited through salvation."



Monday, March 03, 2014

Simon Peter

After you read the 1st letter of Peter let’s take a look at Peter its author as the events of his life as recounted in the NT will help us as we study 1 Peter and its importance in our lives today. Below is a quick outline of events concerning Peter from Nave’s Topical Bible

Peter
• Also called SIMON BAR-JONA and CEPHAS (Matthew 16:16-19; Mark 3:16; John 1:42)
• A fisherman (Matthew 4:18; Luke 5:1-7; John 21:3)
• Call of (Matthew 4:18-20; Mark 1:16-18; Luke 5:1-11)
• His mother-in-law healed (Matthew 8:14; Mark 1:29, 30; Luke 4:38)
• An apostle (Matthew 10:2; 16:18, 19; Mark 3:16; Luke 6:14; Acts 1:13)
• An evangelist (Mark 1:36, 37)
• Confesses Jesus to be the Messiah (Matthew 16:16-19; Mark 8:29; Luke 9:20; John 6:68, 69)

• His presumption
—In rebuking Jesus (Matthew 16:22, 23; Mark 8:32, 33)
—When the throng was pressing Jesus and the woman with the blood disorder touched him (Luke 8:45)
—In refusing to let Jesus wash Peter’s feet (John 13:6-11)

• Present
—At the healing of Jairus’ daughter (Mark 5:37; Luke 8:51)
—At the transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-4; Mark 9:2-6; Luke 9:28-33; 2 Peter 1:16-18)
—In the garden of Gethsemane (Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:33-42; Luke 22:40-46)
• Seeks the interpretation
• Of the parable of the steward (Luke 12:41)
• Of the law of forgiveness (Matthew 18:21)
• Of the law of defilement (Matthew 15:15)
• Of the prophecy of Jesus concerning his second coming (Mark 13:3, 4)
• Walks upon the water of Lake Galilee (Matthew 14:28-31)
• Sent with John to prepare the Passover meal (Luke 22:8)
• Calls attention to the withered fig tree (Mark 11:21)
• His treachery foretold by Jesus, and his profession of fidelity (Matthew 26:33-35; Mark 14:29-31; Luke 22:31-34; John 13:36-38)
• Cuts off the ear of Malchus (Matthew 26:51; Mark 14:47; Luke 22:50)
• Follows Jesus to the high priest’s palace (Matthew 26:58; Mark 14:54; Luke 22:54; John 18:15)
• His denial of Jesus, and his repentance (Matthew 26:69-75; Mark 14:66-72; Luke 22:55-62; John 18:17, 18, 25-27)
• Visits the gravesite of Jesus (Luke 24:12; John 20:2-6)
• Jesus sends message to, after the resurrection (Mark 16:7)
• Jesus appears to (Luke 24:34; 1 Corinthians 15:4, 5)
• Present at Lake Tiberias when Jesus appeared to his disciples; jumps into the water, and comes to shore when Jesus is recognized; is commissioned to feed the flock of Christ (John 21:1-23)
• Lives in Jerusalem (Acts 1:13)
• His statement in front of the disciples concerning the death of Judas, and his recommendation that the vacancy in the apostleship be filled (Acts 1:15-22)
• Preaches on Pentecost day (Acts 2:14-40)
• Heals the immobile man in the portico of the temple (Acts 3)
• Accused by the council; his defense (Acts 4:1-23)
• Foretells the death of Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11)
• Imprisoned and scourged; his defense before the council (Acts 5:17-42)
• Goes to Samaria (Acts 8:14)
• Prays for the reception of the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:15-18)
• Rebukes Simon, the sorcerer, who desires to purchase this power (Acts 8:18-24)
• Returns to Jerusalem (Acts 8:25)
• Receives Paul (Galatians 1:18; 2:9)
• Visits Lydda; heals Aeneas (Acts 9:32-34)
• Visits Joppa; stays with Simon, the tanner; raises Dorcas from the dead (Acts 9:36-43)
• Has a vision of a sheet containing ceremonially clean and unclean animals (Acts 10:9-16)
• Receives the servant of the centurion; goes to Caesarea; preaches and immerses the centurion and his household (Acts 10)
• Advocates the preaching of the gospel to the Gentiles in the hearing of the apostles and elders (Acts 11:1-18; 15:7-11)
• Imprisoned and delivered by an angel (Acts 12:3-19)
• Writes two epistles (1 Peter 1:1; 2 Peter 1:1)


The Chart below is from the ESV Study Bible.

Other Informative Resources concerning Peter.






Sunday, March 02, 2014

Read 1st Peter Today

Reading the Letter/Epistle of 1st Peter today. Seeking to discover what is God communicating to His people both originally and today through this letter?

Saturday, March 01, 2014

Living as a Christian Study of 1st Peter Starts Today

Later Today We will start a new Bible Study on 1 Peter using our Bibles and Teachings from First Peter by A W Tozer. You can get it here https://www.facebook.com/groups/TPPIGP/ or sign up at my blog to get it daily by email http://equippersnetwork.blogspot.com

Many modern Christians are familiar with the name, and perhaps even some of the writings of, A. W. Tozer, but few living today were blessed to sit under his weekly teaching from the pulpit. In this never-before published collection of teachings on 1 Peter, adapted from sermons given to his parishioners, Tozer examines what it means to call oneself a Christian. In his view, to be a recipient of God's salvation is to become "the pride of all heaven," indestructible and able to withstand anything and everything that seeks to undermine one's faith.
The epistle of 1 Peter was written to a group of just such Christians, to encourage them to live in the center of God's redeeming love. Through Tozer's incomparable teaching and commentary, this ancient letter becomes a fresh and life-infusing admonition for today's Christian!
A.W. Tozer embarked upon a lifelong pursuit of God at the age of 17 after hearing a street preacher in Akron, Ohio. He was a self-taught pastor, writer and editor whose powerful messages continue to grip the hearts and stir the souls of today's believers.
Following his quotes athttp://twitter.com/tozeraw.



Friday, February 28, 2014

Wisdom for a Fresh Move of God

The Next several articles will deal with receiving a fresh move of God in our lives today. The beginning article by Jack Hayford will lay the groundwork for my articles which follow.


"The Holy Spirit at Work.  The power of the Holy Spirit through the church is the most striking feature in Acts. The book has even been called The Acts of the Holy Spirit. The work of the Spirit in Acts, however, cannot be understood without seeing the relationship between Acts and the Gospels, which demonstrates an essential continuity. Both the public ministry of Jesus in the Gospels and the public ministry of the church in Acts begin with a life-changing encounter with the Spirit; both are essential accounts of the results of that event.
 The power of the Spirit in Jesus’ life authorized Him to preach the kingdom of God and to demonstrate kingdom power by healing the sick, casting out demons, and setting the captives free (Luke 4:14–19; Matt. 4:23). The same Spirit power in Acts 2 gave the same authority to the disciples. Jesus is the prototype of the Spirit-filled, Spirit-empowered life (10:38). The Book of Acts is the story of the disciples receiving what Jesus received in order to do what Jesus did.
 Luke’s terminology in describing people’s experience with the Holy Spirit in Acts is fluid. He is more interested in conveying a relational dynamic than in delineating a precisely worded theology. He notes that people were “filled with the Holy Spirit” (2:4; 9:17), that “they received the Holy Spirit” (8:17), that “the Holy Spirit fell upon (them)” (10:44), that “the Holy Spirit had been poured out on (them)” (10:45), and that “the Holy Spirit came upon them” (Acts 19:6). These are all then essential equivalents of Jesus’ promise that the church would “be baptized with the Holy Spirit” (1:5; see especially its immediate fulfillment in 2:4, which Luke describes as a filling).
 Three of these five instances record specific special manifestations of the Spirit in which the people themselves participated. Those on the Day of Pentecost and the Gentiles of Cornelius’s house spoke with other tongues (2:4; 10:46); the Ephesians “spoke with tongues and prophesied” (19:6). Although it is not specified, it is generally agreed that there was also some type of manifestation in which the Samaritans participated because Luke says that “when Simon saw that ... the Holy Spirit was given” (8:18).[1]
The Book of Acts provides five accounts of people receiving the fullness or infilling or baptism in the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:4; 8:14–25; 9:17–20; 10:44–48; 19:1–7). In these accounts five factors are manifest: 1) There was an overwhelming in-breaking of God’s presence experienced by all who were present. 2) There was an evident transformation in the lives and witness of the disciples who were filled. 3) That which was experienced became the impetus for the growth of the church, as "daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ" (Acts 5:42). 4) The immediate evidence in three of the five accounts was glossolalia: For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God" (Acts 10:46). [Glossolalia is a coined term derived from the Greek glossa ("tongue") and laleo ("to speak").] 5) The ultimate purpose of this experience was empowered witnessing (Acts 1:8) and a deeper dimension of Christian commitment for the achievement of happiness (Eph. 5:19), gratitude (Eph. 5:20), humility (Eph. 5:21), and fruitfulness (Gal. 5:22, 23).
Together, the above facts demonstrate what the present Pentecostal/Charismatic renewal is experiencing through the Holy Spirit at work in the church. The problem is that too frequently the elements of this renewal are misunderstood or misapplied for lack of a biblical understanding of "tongues" and the function of the Gifts of the Spirit. Although there are varying theological and ethical viewpoints among some in the Neo–Pentecostal/Charismatic movement, a common bond of unity in the Spirit-filled renewal is the practice of "speaking with tongues" in prayer and worship, together with an acceptance and welcoming of the operation of the Holy Spirit’s gifts in their midst. Thus, to fully understand this phenomenon, it is necessary to see the Pentecostal/Charismatic view as they have learned to implement the Book of Acts’ manifestations of the Holy Spirit’s power–workings, applying the controls taught in 1 Corinthians 12—14.[2]"


[1]Jack W. Hayford, general editor; consulting editors, Sam Middlebrook…[et.al.], Spirit filled life study Bible [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1991.