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Daily Bread - November 7, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 07 November 2017 07:47
Matthew 5:6 - Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness;
for they shall be filled.

The Lord requires that we learn to live by His Word, and walk by the
direction of the Holy Spirit. If we are not hungry, we will not live by His
Word; and if we are not thirsty, we will not drink of the things of the
Spirit. However, the spiritual life that has been given to us in Christ
Jesus causes us to be both hungry and thirsty for the things of God; and if
we are hungry and thirsty, then we will be filled.

God led Israel through the wilderness and allowed them to get hungry so
that He might teach them that men do not live by bread alone, but by every
Word that proceeds from the mouth of God (Deuteronomy 8:3). It was by this
principal that Jesus overthrew the temptations of Satan in the wilderness
when He was tempted (Matthew 4:4; Luke 4:4). Jesus, as the model Son of
God, did not have a long protracted life of dealing with the same problem
over and over again; but with perfect obedience to the Word of God, He
delivered a deathblow to the devices of Satan.

God taught Israel that He alone could satisfy the thirst of their souls. He
showed them that if they would trust Him, He would give them to drink from
the spiritual Rock, Christ Jesus (1 Corinthians 10:4). He testified of His
great provision supplied by Christ, Who when He was smitten would provide
the true water for every truly thirsty soul -a thirst that only comes when
His people are willing to walk wherever He leads them to go (Exodus 17:6;
Psalms 78:20). He testified of the blessing that would come once Christ had
been smitten, the blessing of an unending flow of these waters of life for
all who would follow. God made provision that would only require us to
speak to the Rock, Christ Jesus; and the waters of the Holy Spirit would
flow to our thirsty souls (Numbers 20:8; John 4:13-14, 7:37-39; 1
Corinthians 10:4).

As Jesus cried out by the Spirit in Jerusalem, the Holy Spirit continues to
cry out today saying, "If anyone thirst, come and drink!" And just as the
Scripture says, out of the inner most being rivers of the Holy Spirit will
flow out, which are the rivers from on High (John 7:37-39; Isaiah 41:18;
Revelation 22:17). This is the source of all the life of God -the life of
Christ, the abundant life of the Spirit, that lasts forever! This is that
heavenly realm that fills men with every good and perfect thing, so that
they never thirst for a life of sin again (John 4:13-14).

Many have been born of God that have not been willing to fully step in to
the life that has been provided. The great things of God are on the inside
of them, but they are unwilling to allow them to be activated by obedience.
It's high time to walk with the Father, and let Him take us where He wills.
We must let the Holy Spirit teach us how to be hungry and live on heavenly
bread (John 6:32-33, 58). We must, through faithful obedience to His Word,
allow the Holy Ghost to show us how spiritual thirst will lead us to the
Rock where we can drink continually of His presence and be filled with all
His fulness (Ephesians 5:18, 3:14-21).

God has blessed our nation with plenty; and so when we are hungry we sit
down to a great feast at supper time, and find that there is always more
than we can eat. Because of such a bountiful supply, we are able to eat
until we are full. God, who is rich in mercy towards us, has also supplied
us with a feast of righteousness; and if we are thirsty and hungry, we can
drink and eat of His righteousness until our whole being is filled with His
goodness.

Hungering and thirsting are images of longing after God in both the Old and
New Testaments (Isaiah 55:1; Psalms 42:2; John 4:13, 7:37; Revelation 21:6,
22:17). The righteousness of God is something that we should long for more
than anything else (Matthew 6:33); but unfortunately, many of God's people
fail to even realize what righteousness is. Righteousness is defined by the
conduct and lifestyle of God Almighty. Righteousness is everything that
pertains unto life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3-7). It was modeled for us by
Jesus; and He died for us so that we could be dead to sin, and enabled to
live in righteousness (1 Peter 2:24). It is the behavior and disposition of
love. Righteousness is not man's vain attempt to please God; rather,
righteousness is the conduct of the redeemed (Luke 1:74-75; 2 Peter
1:3-11). However, unless a person is born of the Spirit, they will never be
able to fully realize the character and conduct of the Almighty; and their
attempt will be vain (John 3:5; 1 Corinthians 2:14).

Jesus couples the Kingdom of God with the righteousness of God, and places
them before us as that which we should desire above all other things
(Matthew 6:33; Romans 14:17). The righteousness of God has been made
available to us as a free gift. Our hearts and spirits have been recreated
in righteousness and true holiness by the Spirit of God, so that we can
know and do those things that pertain unto His righteousness (Ephesians
4:24; Romans 6:19). Let us be thirsty today and come and drink of the
righteousness that is supplied by the Spirit of God (Ephesians 5:18). Let
us be hungry so that we may yield to God's abundant and rich supply of
righteousness that is in the Holy Ghost (Romans 14:17; Philippians 1:11; 2
Corinthians 6:7; Romans 5:17,21, 10:6-10; 1 Corinthians 1:30).

Hunger and thirst for righteousness today, and you shall be filled!
 
Daily Bread - November 6, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Monday, 06 November 2017 11:42
2 Peter 1:11 - For in this way, you shall be richly supplied the entrance
into the everlasting Kingdom of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Freshly-Baked Updated and Expanded Version!

One could simply view this verse of Scripture as an assurance to the
obedient and diligent of being granted with a lavish entrance into the
Kingdom of God at the time of their death. Professor Salmond felt that this
text was the reverse of "saved, yet so as by fire" (1 Corinthians 3:15).
Yet, there is more to this verse; for surely, the purpose of our lives now
is to be the witnesses of the Lord Jesus Christ. We must be willing to grow
into a greater manifestation of the oneness with Him that has been granted
to us (John 14:12, 17:22-23). Keeping in mind the fact that Paul said that
the saints have been translated from the kingdom of this world into the
Kingdom of the Dear Son, we must be willing to embrace that we have already
entered into some dimension of the Kingdom of God now (Colossians 1:13,
3:1-3; Galatians 2:20; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; 1 John 3:1-2; John 17:13-23).

Jesus told the leaders of Israel that the Kingdom would be taken from them
and given to another nation that would bring forth the fruits of the
Kingdom (Matthew 21:43). Jesus also commanded us to seek first the Kingdom
of God and His righteousness as a way in which we live our lives every day
(Matthew 6:33-34). Paul also gave us a description of the fruits of the
Kingdom of God that should be manifested in our daily lives as evidence of
our communion with God when he said, "For the Kingdom of God is not meat
and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost" (Romans
14:17). The only qualification of entering into the Kingdom is being born
of the Spirit (John 3:5). Peter was addressing the saints to take hold of a
realm of consecration that would result in an increase revelation of God's
glory now and, no doubt, a triumphant entry into the realms of that glory
after this life on earth has ended.

Although, as The Bible Exposition Commentary points out, "If we make lavish
provision to grow spiritually (2 Peter 1:5-10), then God will make lavish
provision for us when we enter heaven," the witness and fruits of the
Kingdom are to be manifested in our lives now (Galatians 5:22-25; Ephesians
5:8-10). If we are willing to function in the lavishly supplied riches of
the Spirit to walk in the nature of God, then there will also be a lavish
supply of grace to function in the realms of the miracle glory of the
Kingdom now (2 Peter 1:2-11; 2 Corinthians 9:8; 2 Thessalonians 1:11;
Ephesians 3:20). The examples of those who stepped over into that realm of
glory are many, from Enoch to Paul (Hebrews 11:1-12:2). Surely, there is a
continual increase in the nature of God, as well as the glory and power of
God, if we are willing to give ourselves wholly to His purposes.

Paul opens the door to all saints to know the love of Christ that passes
knowledge, and to be filled with all of the fullness of God. He also sets
forth the call to "the measure of the maturity of the fullness of
Christ..."(Ephesians 3:16-21, 4:13). We may be certain that God rewards
those who diligently seek Him with the same kind of rewards that He gave
starting with Enoch and all of those spoken of in the Bible (Hebrews 11:6;
Act 10:34-35; Romans 2:10-11; Colossians 3:23-25). There awaits boundless
insight into the glories of the inheritance and exceeding greatness of the
power of Christ Jesus for all who are willing and obedient (Ephesians
1:17-19; 1 Corinthians 2:9-15). Peter is not referring to a works based
reward, but to an obedience based inheritance (2 Peter 1:3-11; John
14:21,23; 1 John 2:3-6, 3:2-3, 5:3-4). The door is opened to explore the
endless realms of the Spirit of God, but it is only through yielding to and
obeying the Spirit of God that we may enter into and explore these
unsearchable riches of Christ, and gaze upon those things which eyes have
not seen, nor ears have heard, nor has entered into the heart of man (1
Corinthians 2:4-16; Ephesians 3:7-21). The divine opportunities that are
given to us now in the Kingdom of God resound in the call to "...be endue
with power from on High", and to know the "breadth, and length, and depth,
and height", "to come into the fulness of the measure of the ministry of
Jesus unto a fully matured man" (Luke 24:49; Ephesians 3:18; 4:13).

Enter fully into these divine opportunities today!
 
Daily Bread - November 4, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 04 November 2017 14:56
2 Peter 1:11 - For in this way, you shall be richly supplied the entrance
into the everlasting Kingdom of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

One could simply view this verse of Scripture as an assurance to the
obedient and diligent of being granted with a lavish entrance into the
Kingdom of God at the time of their death. Professor Salmond felt that this
text was the reverse of "saved, yet so as by fire" (1 Corinthians 3:15).
Yet, there is more to this verse; for surely, the purpose of our lives now
is to be the witnesses of the Lord Jesus Christ and must take on more of
the dimension of the life and glory of Jesus (John 14:12, 17:22-23). The
divine opportunities that are given to us now in the Kingdom of God cry out
in Jesus' declaration to us, "Until you be endue with power from on High"
(Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8). Keeping in mind the fact that Paul said that the
saints have been translated from the kingdom of this world into the Kingdom
of the Dear Son, we must be willing to embrace that we have already entered
into some dimension of the Kingdom of God now (Colossians 1:13, 3:1-3;
Galatians 2:20; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; 1 John 3:1-2; John 17:13-23).

Jesus told the leaders of Israel that the Kingdom would be taken from them
and given to another nation that would bring forth the fruits of the
Kingdom (Matthew 21:43). Jesus also commanded us to seek first the Kingdom
of God and His righteousness as a way in which we live our lives every day
(Matthew 6:33-34). Paul also gave us a description of the fruits of the
Kingdom of God that should be manifested in our daily lives as evidence of
our communion with God when he said, "For the Kingdom of God is not meat
and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost" (Romans
14:17). The only qualification of entering into the Kingdom is having been
born of the Spirit (John 3:5). Peter is addressing the saints to take hold
of a realm of consecration that will result in an increase revelation of
God's glory now and, no doubt, a triumphant entry into the realms of that
glory after this life on earth has ended.

Although, as The Bible Exposition Commentary points out, "If we make lavish
provision to grow spiritually (2 Peter 1:5-10), then God will make lavish
provision for us when we enter heaven," the witness and fruits of the
Kingdom are to be manifested in our lives now (Galatians 5:22-25; Ephesians
5:8-10). If we are willing to function in the lavishly supplied riches of
the Spirit to walk in the nature of God, then there will also be a lavish
supply of grace to function in the realms of the miracle glory of the
Kingdom (2 Peter 1:2-11; 2 Corinthians 9:8; 2 Thessalonians 1:11; Ephesians
3:20). The examples of those who stepped over into that realm of glory are
many, from Enoch to Paul (Hebrews 11:1-12:2). Surely, there is a continual
increase in the nature of God, as well as the glory and power of God, if we
are willing to give ourselves wholly to His purposes.

Paul opens the door to all saints to know the love of Christ that passes
knowledge, and to be filled with all of the fullness of God. He also sets
forth the call to "the measure of the maturity of the fullness of
Christ..."(Ephesians 3:16-21, 4:13). We may be certain that God rewards
those who diligently seek Him with the same kind of rewards that He gave to
Enoch and all of those spoken of in the Bible (Hebrews 11:6; Act 10:34-35;
Romans 2:10-11; Colossians 3:23-25). There awaits boundless insight into
the glories of the inheritance and exceeding greatness of the power of
Christ Jesus for all who are willing and obedient (Ephesians 1:17-19; 1
Corinthians 2:9-15). Peter, here is verse 11, is not referring to a works
based reward, but to an obedience based inheritance (2 Peter 1:3-11; John
14:21,23; 1 John 2:3-6, 3:2-3, 5:3-4). The door is opened to explore the
endless realms of the Spirit of God, but it is only through yielding to and
obeying the Spirit of God that we may enter into and explore these
unsearchable riches of Christ, and gaze upon those things which eyes have
not seen, nor ears have heard, nor has entered into the heart of man (1
Corinthians 2:4-16; Ephesians 3:7-21).

Here is an essential key: We must cleave to the Lord and practice being one
with Him at all times (Acts 11:23; Romans 12:9; Deuteronomy 10:20; Ps
101:3; 1 John 3:24; John 6:56, 14:23, 15:4, 17:22-23)

Enter in and stay in!
 
Daily Bread - November 3, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 03 November 2017 07:47
Luke 1:75 - In Holiness and Righteousness in His sight all the days of our
lives.

The Greek word for Holiness (hosiotes) that is used here, and in Ephesians
4:24, has a special meaning. In classical Greek, the word 'hosia' denotes
the "everlasting principles of right" (Word Study in the New Testament). It
is therefore correct to assume, then, that the Greek word used here for
Holiness concerns the eternal laws of God. The meaning of "this proper
behavior" concerning the eternal laws of God would extend beyond what would
be acceptable for a period of time, such as the Law of Moses or another
covenant, put in place to facilitate yet another step towards the ultimate
desire of God; but rather, it would be the very expression of those eternal
ways of God. There are some who argue that this word (hosiotes) should be
translated 'purity' or 'perfection' (A Handbook of the Gospel of Luke
Reiling, J., & Swellengrebel, J. L. (1993], c1971).

Could it be that there exists in everyone who has been born of the Spirit
an untapped Divine ability to be everything that God intended men to be,
and more, when He first created them in His likeness and image? Is it
possible that because we have not be willing to believe that we can live in
this blessed realm, that we have been deceived into accepting a lifestyle
far less than what God purposed for us in Redemption? By the Holy Spirit,
Zacharias prophesied concerning the age of the Messiah, an age which has no
end. The age of the Kingdom and reign of the Messiah began 2000 years ago,
and of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end
(Isaiah 9:7; Colossians 1:13).

In this prophetic utterance recorded in Luke 1:67-79, Zacharias announced
to all mankind what God would do for us through our Savior Jesus Christ. He
was introducing the new birth and the new self, created in Righteousness
and true Holiness (Ephesians 4:24). Through this awesome work of grace, God
has given to us an unspeakable gift (Ephesians 3:7; 2 Corinthians 9:15). He
has delivered us from the fear that had caused us to live in bondage all of
our lifetime (Hebrews 2:15; Luke 1:74; Genesis 3:10). God has filled us
with His Spirit and given us the Spirit of Sonship, so that we can call God
our Father and serve Him as He before ordained, in Holiness without blame
before Him in love (Romans 8:15; Galatians 4:5; Ephesians 1:4-5). There is
absolutely no question about God's desire for us to be Holy; for He tells
us in no uncertain terms to "be Holy, even as He is Holy"; and that without
Holiness, we will not see Him (1 Peter 1:15-16; Hebrews 12:14).

Let God fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness, and the work of
faith with power in you (2 Thessalonians 1:11)
 
Daily Bread - November 2, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 03 November 2017 07:47
Ephesians 3:7 - Of which I have become a minister, according to the gift of
the grace of God given to me, according to the mighty working of His power.

Paul was able to represent Jesus in His own life by signs and wonders
because he was given this same miracle power (Acts 19:11-12, 15:12; Romans
15:19; Hebrews 2:4; 2 Corinthians 12:12). That same miracle power of the
life of Jesus resides on the inside of each one of us, but will only be
revealed if we learn to move with the Holy Spirit's direction (John 15:5;
Mark 16:17; Acts 1:8; 1 John 4:4; Colossians 1:27). There are two Greek
words used here for power: 'energeia' (working power/supernatural strength/
divine activity) and 'dunamis' (the power of Pentecost/God's power). The
ability that Paul had to represent Jesus and live the Christian life was
supplied directly to him through the Holy Spirit (Galatians 3:5). This is
not some esoteric activity of God that takes place absent of our will and
consciousness. Rather, this is an activity of the Holy Spirit in our life,
not unlike any other relationship (Ephesians 3:16, 6:10; Colossians 1:11;
Isaiah 40:29-31). We must recognize His Presence by yielding to and obeying
His direction. The Holy Spirit desires to supply us with miracle working
power every day. We must learn to depend upon the ability that God supplies
to us through His power at work in our life. Through interacting with the
Holy Spirit in praise and worship, reading the Word of God, and giving
ourselves to prayer, He trains us to yield to Him. He builds up our faith
and expectation to do everything that He said we can do (John 14:12;
Philippians 4:13; John 15:7).

As we walk with God, we learn to expect a miracle instead of wondering how
things are going to work out. Miracles should be an everyday experience for
the children of God who are in expectation of seeing God at work in their
lives. Our life in Christ Jesus began with a miracle. As we yielded to the
Holy Spirit and responded to the promise of salvation, He performed the
greatest miracle of our lives by transforming us into a new creation (John
3:6; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Romans 8:9). As we learn to walk in the love, joy,
and peace of the Holy Spirit, we will find ourselves continually
overwhelmed with His Presence. As we grow and mature in Christ, we become
more confident of what God will do than what we can do (Philippians 3:3,
1:6; 2 Corinthians 9:8; 2 Thessalonians 1:11; 2 Timothy 2:21; Hebrews
13:21; Zechariah 4:6). If we will simply take hold of the reality that
without Jesus we can do nothing, then we will begin to put our faith in the
activity of God working through us. Right now, the Holy Spirit has a
supernatural supply of power for you, and it is God's will that you be
endued with His divine ability (Romans 13:12, 14; Galatians 3:27; Ephesians
4:24, 6:11, Colossians 3:10, 12, 14).

Let God fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness, and the work of
faith with power in you (2 Thessalonians 1:11)
 
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