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Daily Bread - July 26, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 26 July 2017 08:11
John 5:20 - For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things which He
does; and will show Him greater works, so that you may be astonished.

The love of God that was manifested in a continued attempt to win the
hearts of these stubborn men Jesus is addressing is amazing. God's love is
so great, He was willing to increase the manifestation of His power to
demonstrate even greater miracles in order to penetrate the blindness of
their hearts. The Greek word used here (thaumazo) may be translated: amaze,
astonish, surprise, or admiration. God so loves us that He has given
everything He can to win us to Himself. It was, and is, the desire of the
Father to give glory to His Son Christ Jesus (John 8:54, 11:4, 12:28).
Because of the love relationship that existed between the Father and the
Lord Jesus, Father revealed everything to His Son. The greater works that
Jesus seems to be referring to here is the raising of the dead (John 5:21,
25).

When we consider this statement by Jesus, our attention is also drawn to
the fact that He has ordained us to do greater works than He did (John
14:12). He has called us and ordained us to walk in these greater works, so
that the Father may be glorified in the Son; and that the Son, Christ
Jesus, may be honored by all men (John 14:13, 16:14). Jesus has both shown
us and commanded us to do these things that He himself has done (John
17:18; Mark 16:17). If we are willing and obedient, we will discover a
relationship with the Lord Jesus that results in our every deed and word
bringing glory and honor to His Name. We must be the continuous spectator
of all that the Lord Jesus is doing, even as He was the Spectator of all
that the Father was doing; for without Him we can do nothing (John 15:5)!

Holy Spirit, take control of me,
Come and rule every part for Your glory!
Holy Spirit, take control of me,
In You I delight!!!
 
Daily Bread - July 25, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 25 July 2017 10:18
John 14:21 - He that has My commandments, and keeps them, is the one that
loves Me. And he who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I shall love
him and reveal Myself to him.

The Word of God conveys to us the ways of God. More than anything else,
Heaven is calling out to the sons of man to come and know the ways of God
-which are the ways of life! If we are willing to walk in a love
relationship with Jesus, our Redeemer and eternal God, then we will
discover the beauty of holiness. Jesus is not calling us to obey a set of
rules, but to have a change of life style. As we obey the Word of God, our
behavior is conformed to that of the Almighty God. As we give ourselves to
make our calling and election sure, the Holy Spirit teaches us an entrance
into the realms of the Kingdom so that we may know and function in those
things that are freely given to us by God (2 Peter 1: 3-11; 1 Corinthians
2:12).

God has supplied everyone who is willing with the opportunity to stand in
His presence and come into all the fullness of His glory. If we will not
take this opportunity for granted, but will hunger and thirst after
righteousness God will fill us up with all the good things of His own
fullness and glory (Matthew 5:6, 6:33). All we have to do is be obedient to
the Word, and we are made ready for a greater encounter with Jesus -Who
will come and reveal Himself to us with an ever increasing measure of His
presence! It is through these encounters that our hearts are enlarged to
receive more of those things of His glory which He has determined to pour
out upon us and reveal through us. All creation is groaning to see the sons
of God; but unless we allow the life of Jesus to be revealed through us,
the chains of darkness and the mind blinding spirits that hold the lost in
captivity will not be broken (Romans 8:19-22; 2 Corinthians 4:3-4; Matthew
5:16; Romans 10:13-15; Philippians 2:13-15).
 
Daily Bread - July 24, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Monday, 24 July 2017 06:36
Ephesians 5:1 - Be, then, imitators of God, as loving children.

God's nature is divine in every way. Everything about Him is good, lovely,
and wonderful; and we are graced with the privilege of being taught to be
like Him (Matthew 5:48; James 1:17; John 16:13-15; 1 Timothy 4:8; 2 Timothy
3:12; Hebrews 8:10-11; 2 Peter 1:3, 6-7). We are commanded to imitate God,
walk in the Spirit, and follow Jesus (Ephesians 5:1; Galatians 5:25;
Matthew 10:38). The concept of 'mimetai' (to 'mimic' or 'imitate') goes
beyond the idea of being God's friend or follower -it calls for us to act
exactly like God! If we are going to act like God, we must be trained to
function in His nature and ways.

God made all of this possible: He changed our hearts and spirits to be like
His; and He sent the Holy Spirit to teach us and train us (John 6:45; 1
Thessalonians 4:9; Jeremiah 31:34). We should be eager to learn and mature!
The anointing that we have received reveals the things of God's divine
nature to us, and our response should be a hunger and thirst for more (1
John 2:27; Matthew 5:6). As we listen to the Holy Spirit and respond to
Him, we become increasingly sensitive to His voice and instruction. Along
with sensitivity, comes humility and meekness; and these make us even more
pliable and cooperative (Matthew 11:29; Philippians 2:5-7). God the Holy
Spirit will not do anything outside of love and humility; and if we are
going to connect with Him, then we must learn to only give place to His
divine disposition.

Being self-willed must have no place in our life. Jesus taught us to deny
ourselves and instead do only those things that the Father shows us to do
(John 5:19, 5:30, 8:28, 54, 12:49, 15:5; Mark 8:34). Recognizing 'yourself'
is a challenging thing, but the Holy Spirit instructs us using both the
contrast of our lives to Jesus and the beauty of what He reveals to us
about the nature of God. If we are going to flow in the rivers of His
Spirit, then we must not flow with the things of 'ourself' (our
perspectives, self-will, and self-interest). When it is our delight to do
His will as the servants of the Lord, being self-willed becomes that much
more apparent to us. Living for ourselves and after the strong impulses of
what we think and perceive opposes our growth and blessings in God. We can
cry out all day long for more anointing and more of this or that, but
nothing will change until we are willing to do things God's way. God is
faithfully committed to our spiritual maturity, but we must cooperate. If
we walk in the love and humility of the Holy Spirit, we will be thrilled
with the glory and goodness of God's divine order. We will gladly imitate
God and all of His divine behavior, and follow those who follow Jesus and
flow in the Holy Ghost (1 Corinthians 4:16, 11:1; Philippians 3:17; 1
Thessalonians 1:6; 2 Thessalonians 3:7, 9; Hebrews 13:7, 17; 1 Peter 5:5).
As we walk with God, we will develop an insatiable appetite for more of
Heaven!
 
Daily Bread - July 22, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 22 July 2017 08:38
Philippians 1:6 - Being confident that He Who began a good work in you will
finish it till the day of Jesus Christ.

The Holy Spirit is devoted to bringing all of us into the fullness of the
maturity of the measure of the ministry of Jesus Christ - unto a fully
matured believer (Ephesians 4:13). The subject here is not salvation, or a
process of being saved, but of the maturity of each believer: to come into
all of the fullness of the glory of God provided for us through the
redemption that is in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 3:18-19). Yet, more than
anything else, the completion of the work of Christ is our resurrection
from the dead unto life immortal (Philippians 3:11; 1 Thessalonians
4:16-17).

It is God Who works in us both to will and to work for His good pleasure
(Philippians 2:13). Therefore, we can be confident along with Paul that God
is faithful to complete His good work in us if we continue to look to
Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2). If we will
simply respond to the invitation that has been given us to come and dwell
in His glory, then we will bear all of the fruits of His nature and the
blessings of fellowship with Him (John 15:1-5, 16; Romans 6:22; Philippians
1:11). There is no limit to the provision of God, and to the riches of
Christ Jesus; which He will supply to us to meet our every need
spiritually, physically, and financially (Philippians 4:19; 3 John 1:2; 2
Corinthians 9:8).

We cannot expect that we are going to have the results that God wants to
produce for us unless we are willing to have a right relationship with Him.
The Macedonians at Philippi are an example to us of a right relationship;
who after having received the Gospel, became partners for the advancement
of the Gospel (2 Corinthians 8:1-5; Philippians 1:3-7, 4:15). Now we do not
have to look to ourselves for ability to do these things; for God has
empowered us with everything that we need to respond to him as obedient
children (Romans 6:16-18, 6:22, 15:17-18; 1 Peter 1:2,14; 2 Corinthians
2:9, 10:5). With this grace that God has given, we must be willing to be
faithful to the call of God; and be responsible to place the Kingdom of
God, and the righteousness of God, above all other things in our life
(Matthew 6:33). We should not do these things because we have to, but
because we are motivated by the love of God that has been poured into our
hearts by the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5). Our hearts and motives have been
united with Father in His righteous cause - and nothing should be more
important to us than those things that please Him (Philippians 3:8; John
14:15, 15:10; 1 John 5:2; 2 John 1:6).

Those who do not trust in themselves, but in Christ, do not have to look to
themselves for a solution to their needs - but instead to Calvary! Christ
Jesus is at work in us. The Holy Spirit is at work in us. We are being
divinely assisted and strengthened by Almighty God to be everything that we
have been created in Christ Jesus to be; but we must look to the Lord
instead of ourselves for the help and the change that we need (Ephesians
3:20; Romans 8:26-28). Look to the cross where you began: where all this
life was freely supplied. It is there that you will find all the
forgiveness and provision of life still flowing freely to all who will
believe. We must believe that God loves us at all times and never despises
our weakness, but is devoted to our perfection (1 John 4:16-18; Romans
5:6,10). If we put our trust in Him, we will never be ashamed, but will
always and at all times find help in time of need.

When reproved don't feel condemned, but empowered with insight and
expectation for those things you can be confident the Holy Spirit will
provide! Too many times, when we are challenged or corrected (either by the
ministry of the Spirit through a Pastor, or by life's circumstances), we
allow ourselves to feel like a failure. We may even run from such
correction, because we are so hard on ourselves. But when we will take
every instruction, correction, and reproof and run to Christ Jesus with it,
and look to the Author and Finisher of our faith - we will find grace and
help (Hebrews 12:2).

Christ Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and the Father are devoted to our
perfection, protection, and provision; all we have to do is to put our
trust in God, and not in ourselves. We will find a continual blessing of
provision for all of our needs if we refuse to trust in the arm of flesh;
but instead, make God the sole object of our trust (Jeremiah 17:5-7). If we
will faithfully hold to the reality that everything we have in Christ right
now was freely given to us by the Spirit and not by our own ability, we
will recognize that every need and shortcoming in our life will also be
corrected and changed - not by the flesh (human ability), but by the same
Spirit of the Lord; Who will continually supply His divine power, enabling
us to grow and mature if we will just look to Him alone (Galatians 3:3).
Never feel like a failure again; but instead be a recipient of continual
growth as one being instructed in all the ways of God and established in
His righteousness.

Holy Spirit, take control of me,
Come and rule every part for Your glory,
Holy Spirit, take control of me,
In You I delight!!!
 
Daily Bread - July 21, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 21 July 2017 09:42
Ephesians 2:3 - In this, we also all conducted ourselves in the desire of
our flesh, fulfilling the will of the flesh and of the imagination; and
were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.

Although flesh is often communicated in a positive sense, in this verse it
refers to a depraved nature that lives only for the gratification of its
lust. Although Jesus was manifested in the flesh and suffered for us in the
flesh, there was no dimension of depravity or immorality in His life (John
1:1-14; 1 Peter 3:18, 4:1-2; 1 Timothy 3:16). The depraved nature that
lives only for vile affections takes center stage in Genesis 6. Men had
become so given over to their fleshly lusts that the imaginations of their
hearts were constantly bent on evil (Genesis 6:5). Because of the vile and
wicked state of the heart of man, God repented that he had made men
(Genesis 6:6). The wicked state of the heart corrupts every thought and
action, and the only remedy is a new heart (Ezekiel 36:26; 2 Corinthians
3:3; Colossians 2:11; Hebrews 10:16).

Flesh may also describe the muscles of the body, meat used for sacrifice or
food, human ability, the body of man, and even the complete man (including
the soul and spirit, as in "all flesh"). There is nothing unholy or
unacceptable about the body of man. The body has been made the temple of
the Holy Ghost; and we are to glorify God in our bodies, which are His (1
Corinthians 6:19-20; John 2:21). Yet, when men live under the dominion of
sin and the power of the spirit of disobedience, then the natural desires
are turned into every lust and unholy 'work of the flesh'. The nature of
sin dominating the heart is expressed in every fleshly lust and wicked
imagination that demons and men can invent to work unrighteousness. The
spirit that works in the sons of disobedience turns everything that God had
made for His holy purpose into the worst kinds of human depravities. In
this sense, flesh and fleshly lust describe the state and works of the sons
of disobedience. Humanity, under the dominion of sin, has no fellowship
with God or ability to please God (Romans 8:8-9). Now that we have been
delivered and made the sons of God, if we walk in the Spirit of obedience,
then we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16, 24; Romans
6:22).

To be the children of wrath is equivalent to being the children of
disobedience. Sin is disobedience to God, and the wages of sin is death
(Romans 1:18, 6:23). Paul includes himself with all men as those who were
once the children of wrath and the servants of sin (Romans 6:16-18, 20).
Men without a new heart and new spirit are alienated from God by wicked
works (Colossians 1:21-22). Without Christ Jesus, the wrath of God abides
upon mankind because of these fleshly lusts that work in those who are by
(sinful) nature the children of wrath (John 3:36).

Glorify God in your body and your spirit, which are His! And have this
refrain ever on your lips:

Holy Spirit, take control of me,
Come and rule every part for Your glory,
Holy Spirit, take control of me,
In You I delight!!!
 
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