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Daily Bread - December 14, 2018 (The Sixth Day - Genesis 1:24-31)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 14 December 2018 23:05
Ephesians 5:9-10 - For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness,
righteousness, and truth, proving what is pleasing to the Lord.

Part 1 - Fruits Reveal Our Changed Nature

If we are the children of God, then the fruits of our lives will
demonstrate that we are led by the Spirit (Romans 8:14). The fruits, or
evidence, of the Spirit are the proofs of who we are. They bear witness to
us being born again (John 3:3-6). The fruits of the Spirit revealing our
nature has been changed, and we have made Christ Jesus our Master, are in
all goodness, righteousness, and truth.

There is nothing more wonderful than living in God's goodness. We are
empowered by the Holy Spirit in an atmosphere of His grace with every good
and perfect gift (James 1:17). Now, in the blessings of God's goodness, we
live our lives in righteousness and truth. As much as the Holy Spirit is
the Spirit of truth, He is also the Spirit of righteousness. Those whose
hearts have been changed want nothing other than those good and right
things belonging to the One who has called us to glory and virtue (2 Peter
1:3-4).

The goodness, righteousness, and truth supplied to us by the Holy Spirit
finds its paragon and full expression in Jesus. If anyone would want to
find a reason or an excuse not to have these things reigning in his or her
life, it is evidence their nature has not changed. These Heavenly things
are the greatest blessing Father could bestow upon our lives. He has
empowered us with His abiding presence. By the excellence of the power of
God in us, His goodness, truth, and righteousness flow out like rivers
(John 7:38-39). A life governed by the laws of the Spirit of life is the
abundant and everlasting life found only in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:4; 2
Corinthians 4:7, 5:21).

Since we live in the Spirit, let us walk in the Spirit. (Galatians 5:25)
 
Daily Bread - December 13, 2018 (The Fifth Day - Genesis 1:20-23)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Thursday, 13 December 2018 22:40
Ephesians 5:8 - Indeed you were once darkness, but now light in the Lord
-walk as children of light.

Part 2 - The Light

Jesus Christ is first and foremost the true Light that has come into the
world (John 1:7-9, 8:12, 9:5). Jesus came to give this light to every man
that is in the world (Luke 1:79, 2:32; John 1:9; Matthew 4:16). Those who
believe are empowered to walk in the light as He is in the light (1 John
1:7; Ephesians 5:8; John 8:12). God desires that His redeemed saints be the
light of the world, a city set upon a hill, so all men might see Jesus
(Matthew 5:14-16; John 12:36; Acts 13:47; 1 Thessalonians 5:5; Philippians
2:15).

Light is used figuratively of truth, life, vision, redemption, purity, and
righteousness (John 1:4, 11:9, 12:35, 46; Luke 11:34-36; Acts 26:18; 2
Corinthians 4:6; 1 Peter 2:9; 1 John 1:5). Light is a metaphor for
righteousness and is set in contrast to darkness and evil (Matthew 6:23;
Luke 11:34; John 3:19; Romans 13:12; 2 Corinthians 6:14; 1 John 2:9). The
unrighteous are unwilling to come to the light, because it reveals the
truth and reproves their unrighteous deeds (John 3:20). In the light, all
of God's children are secure, being instructed of the Lord, and the world
has a testimony of God's love and judgment. To understand the true meaning
of light, we look to the fact it represents Who God is in His moral
perfection and holiness.

Blessed are the people who know the joyful shout! They walk, O Lord, in the
light of Your presence! (Psalm 89:15)
 
Daily Bread - December 12, 2018 (The Fourth Day - Genesis 1:14-19)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Thursday, 13 December 2018 22:39
Ephesians 5:8 - Indeed you were once darkness, but now light in the Lord
-walk as children of light.

Part 1 - Once Darkness, But Now Light!

What does it look like to walk as children of light? It would be the exact
opposite of our life and conduct before being redeemed. To walk in the
light of the Lord is to live in the presence of the Lord (Psalms 4:6, 36:9,
44:3, 89:15; Isaiah 2:5). To walk in darkness is to be alienated from God
(Ephesians 4:18). Through the salvation in Christ Jesus, we have been
turned from darkness to light, and from Satan unto God (Acts 26:18). Satan
personifies darkness as Christ Jesus personifies light. Christ Jesus showed
us the lifestyle of walking in the light, and He said if we followed Him,
then we would walk in that light also (John 8:12). John's instruction to us
was to walk in the light as He (Christ Jesus) is in the light, and as a
result, we would have fellowship with one another. Walking in the light is
evidence we have been cleansed from all of our sins through the blood of
Jesus (1 John 1:7).

We are compelled to walk in purity and holiness, not because of the coming
judgement, but because of the radical change of nature that took place when
we were born again. God is light, and because we were born of Him, we are
now children of the light. We once belonged to the domain of darkness, but
now we belong to the Kingdom of Christ Jesus (Colossians 1:13). How can
those who have escaped such corruption live any longer in it? Darkness is
not just a spiritual domain, but a state of existence -thus we were once
darkness. Only through the redemption in Christ Jesus are we liberated from
that darkness of sin and death, so we may now say we are light. Our
behavior must now conform to our new identity (Colossians 2:6; Romans 6).

Our Light has come and the glory of the Lord is upon us -let us walk in His
glory (Isaiah 60:1; John 17:22-23)!
 
Daily Bread - December 11, 2018 (The Third Day - Genesis 1:9-13)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 11 December 2018 09:04
Ephesians 5:7 - Become not then their co-inheritors.

There is an inheritance for those who continue to walk in sin -the wrath of
God. The Greek word 'summetochos' is found two times in Ephesians, with the
other being in Ephesians 3:6 where it is referring to being fellow heirs
with Christ. We can either be partakers with Christ or partakers with the
wicked. The warning is clear: if the saints commit the same sins as the
ungodly (sons of disobedience), then they will be partakers of the wrath of
God (Ephesians 5:6). If we are partakers with the children of disobedience
in the acts of disobedience, then we will be co-inheritors, or partakers,
with them in their everlasting punishment also.

How much of a partnership are God's people allowed to have with those who
practice sin? Paul demands there be no partnership, but rather a rebuke
(Ephesians 5:11). Furthermore, if a person refers to himself as a
Christian, and yet continues to practice sin -or even worse, condone it-
they are not to be allowed in the company of the saints (1 Corinthians
5:11, 6:9; 2 Corinthians 6:14; Galatians 6:7; Ephesians 5:6; 1 John 3:7-8;
2 John 1:10-11).

Walk in the Light as He is in the Light! (1 John 1:7)
 
Daily Bread - December 10, 2018 (The Second Day - Genesis 1:6-8)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Monday, 10 December 2018 11:01
Ephesians 5:6 - Let none deceive you with vain words, because of these
things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.

We live in perilous times. As we approach the end of Satan's reign of
terror, sin and iniquity abound more and more. The voice of the one who
deceives the whole world grows louder, and his war against the souls of men
intensifies (2 Timothy 3:13). The primary enemy of Satan on Earth is the
Church. If he can't stop the Church, he will do everything he can to
neutralize its power. One of Satan's great deceptive works is to slither
into the gospel of grace, and propagate that the wages of sin is not death
(opposite of Romans 6:23). From the beginning, his lie has been "you shall
not die" (Genesis 3:4).

The apostle John also said, "Let no one deceive you" (1 John 3:7). There
were many seducers in the early days of the Church, teaching that a person
did not have to live in holiness and righteousness (opposite of 1 John
2:26-29). They so twisted the Gospel of life that they taught the grace of
God was magnified by God's redeemed people continuing to be sinners once
they were saved (Romans 6:1-2). Today, they twist Paul's words and say
"there is none righteous," even though they have the plain testimony of how
the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10;
Ephesians 5:5; Galatians 5:21). These liars, under demonic influence,
attempt to convince the unlearned that John taught how we are deceivers if
we say we have been made righteous to walk in righteousness; but John made
it very clear how those who walk in sin have no fellowship with Christ (1
John 1:6, 3:9-10, 5:18). John's message, and the message of the entire
Bible is this: he that sins is of the devil, and the one who does
righteousness is of God (1 John 3:8, 2:29, 3:7).

Everyone has the right to choose - either sin which produces death, or the
gift of God which produces life. What we must watch out for is the lie
saying a person can continue in sin and be right with God. While it is true
that the Lord will forgive us of our sins and will teach us to walk in
righteousness, it is a great deception to believe it is okay with God for
us to live the life of sinners. God makes our heart feel convicted over sin
and causes us to hate evil. The god of this world (who is the spirit of
disobedience Ephesians 2:1-3) would deceive us and try to make us believe
that disobedience can be acceptable to God. There are many who have lied
against the truth and allowed sin to callous their hearts (Hebrews 3:13).
They call conviction condemnation, and steal godly sorrow from the hearts
of those who would repent. They make no distinction between being led by
the Spirit of holiness or being led by the spirit of disobedience. They
would mix light with darkness, good with evil, and the Holy Spirit with
devils (2 Corinthians 6:14-16). We all must choose whose side we are on.
God's wrath is revealed against all who have pleasure in unrighteousness (2
Thessalonians 2:12; 2 Peter 2:13; Romans 1:18). But if we will put our
trust in the Lord, we will walk as children of the light instead of sons of
disobedience (Ephesians 5:8; 1 John 1:7).

Walk as children of the Light!
 
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