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Daily Bread - June 29, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Thursday, 29 June 2017 09:36
Ephesians 4:23 - And let your mind be renewed by the Spirit.

God desires that we think differently about ourselves. To be renewed by the
Spirit in our mind, we must be willing to believe what God has said and
then think of ourselves and the things around us accordingly. We must not
be conformed to the image and concepts of this world, but instead
transfigured by believing what God has said (Romans 12:2). We have been
given a new knowledge of ourselves, and it is the knowledge of sonship
(Colossians 3:10; Romans 8:15; Galatians 4:7). If we continue to think of
ourselves as anything less than those who are born again, alive from the
dead, and co-inheritors with Christ, then we are thinking wrongly (1 Peter
1:23; Colossians 2:13; Romans 8:17). We have been changed by the power of
God and created anew. We have been made holy and acceptable, the saints of
the Most High, with all authority in Christ Jesus (Romans 12:1; 1 Peter
2:5; Colossians 1:22; Ephesians 4:24). After having received Christ Jesus
and being taught by Him, we must hold fast the identity and position that
He has given to us.

The god of this world would corrupt us with the lies that he propagates
against God. He fights against the anointing and Word of God, attempting to
make God's Word and the miracle of salvation ineffective. If we will simply
believe God, the lies of Satan will fall powerless at our feet. Through the
strength of the Lord and the power of His might, we take up the weapons of
our warfare and bring every thought into captivity unto the obedience of
Christ (Ephesians 6:10; 2 Corinthians 10:4-5). We must refuse to hear the
voice of the spirit of disobedience, or be persuaded to conform to all his
lust (Ephesians 2:2-3; 1 John 2:15-16). This is why Paul taught the saints
that they had to have a radical and complete redefining of their lives, in
which nothing that belonged to the former life would be allowed to exist
(Ephesians 2:2-3, 4:17-19, 5:8,14; Colossians 1:21, 2:11-13, 3:7). There
can be no wavering or middle ground in this war (Matthew 12:30)! If we are
to succeed, then we must not lean on our own understanding; rather, we must
believe the report of the Lord (Proverbs 3:5; Romans 10:16). We must hold
fast to the Word of God and, taking the whole armor of God, be unwavering
in our confession of faith (Philippians 2:16; Ephesians 6:11; Hebrews
10:23). If we will stand fast, then we will see everything that God has
said revealed in our lives (1 Corinthians 16:13; Galatians 5:1).

By the authority that we have been given as the sons of God and by the
divine power of the new man, the former behavior and all its lust may be
cast down. There is no power that can stop us from walking in union with
God and being conformed to the image of the Son (John 17:11, 21-23; Romans
8:29). We must be willing to accept the image of righteousness and true
holiness and be renewed by the Holy Spirit as we behold the glory of God
(Colossians 3:10; 2 Corinthians 3:18). To view ourselves as weak, carnal,
and unable to please God is the wrong way to think. If we listen to such
lies, then we are giving place to the devil and allowing sin to have
dominion over us (Romans 6:14; Ephesians 4:27). We are to move in faith and
believe the good news! God has worked an unimaginable miracle of salvation
for us; so let us say, as Mary did, "Be it unto me according to your Word!"
(Luke 1:38). If we are unwilling to believe God and think of ourselves as
new creatures who are called to the fullness of the maturity of Christ,
then we will never realize the maturity that He has planned for us. If we
refuse to believe what God has said about His great salvation, then we will
live our lives as babes and ultimately find ourselves tricked and mislead
by deceivers (Ephesians 4:14).

It is God the Holy Spirit that gives us the ability to see and understand
(Ephesians 1:17-18). The Holy Spirit supplies us with the mind of Christ (1
Corinthians 2:16; Philippians 2:5, 4:7). He has brought to us the renewal
that we need, and He is the One who strengthens us in our inner being to
live this life of Jesus (Titus 3:5; Ephesians 3:16-19). God the Holy
Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, has come to teach us and show us how to walk
in all those things that pertain to life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3-4;
Titus 2:11-14)!
 
Daily Bread - June 28, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 28 June 2017 07:50
2 Corinthians 3:18 - And all of us with an unveiled face, beholding the
glory of the Lord in a mirror, are transfigured into the same image from
glory to glory, as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Moses beheld the glory of the Lord, and his face shown with the glory of
that encounter. Jesus was caught up into the glory of God, and was
transfigured before Peter, James, and John (Mark 9:2). Today, Gods' people
also have an opportunity to be transfigured. We are transfigured as we
allow our hearts and minds to come into agreement with the Word of God. As
we take hold of those things that God has said about us and believe that we
are what He declares us to be, then we are renewed in the spirit of our
mind and are transfigured into the image of Christ (Ephesians 4:23; Romans
8:29, 12:1-2).

We must be willing to make no provision for the realm of humanity; but
rather, allow the Spirit of the Lord to clothe us with the splendor and
image of Christ (Romans 13:14; Galatians 3:27). We are suppose to look at
ourselves in the light of what God has both said about us, and made us to
be, in Christ Jesus. When we look at our reflection, we should see the
glory of the Lord and find ourselves being transfigured into that glorious
image of Christ. We are continually faced with the challenge as to whether
we will believe what man and demon spirits say about us, or to believe what
God says about us. If we will accept the identity that we have been given
by God in Christ Jesus, and walk according to the Word of God, then we will
realize all of the glory and splendor of the life of Christ. God has an
image and identity for us, and that is the image and identity of Christ
Jesus. God predestinated us to be conformed to this image (Romans 8:29). We
were given this image when we were born of the Spirit. At that moment, we
were created anew in Christ Jesus after the likeness of His righteousness
and true holiness (Ephesians 4:24). This is what God desires for us to know
about ourselves: that for us to live is Christ (Galatians 2:20; Colossians
3:10; Philippians 1:21; 2 Corinthians 5:14-21; 1 Corinthians 1:30).

If we are willing to take on the image of the Son, then we will discover an
ever increasing glory of the manifest presence of Christ Jesus in our lives
(2 Corinthians 3:18; Romans 12:2; Ephesians 1:17-18, 3:19). If we refuse to
accept anything other than what God has said about us, then we will arise
out of the ashes of shame and failure and experience a continual increase
of God's manifest glory and power in our lives -and we will shine as the
sun (Isaiah 60:1; Matthew 5:14; Philippians 2:15; Matthew 13:43; 17:2)!
 
Daily Bread - June 27, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 27 June 2017 11:44
Isaiah 6:5 - The I said, "Woe is me, for I am undone! For I am a man of
unclean lips, and I dwell among a people of unclean lips; for I have seen
with my eyes the King, Yahoah of Hosts!"

We must have a great Holy Ghost conviction in our lives and in our church
services. Without the conviction of the Holy Spirit, no one will truly
repent and receive the miracle of salvation. Our church services should be
like walking into the Holy of Holies. The awesome presence of God and truth
of His Word should confront everyone who walks in the door. Of course,
there will have to be the same devotion to God in our everyday lives if we
are going to make room for the Holy Spirit to move like this. A life that
is less than consecrated wholly for God will not afford much capacity for
the manifestation of the Holy Spirit in any context.

When Isaiah encountered the presence of God, the conviction that came as a
result of his encounter with the awesome Holiness of God left Him undone.
Job had a similar response when the presence of God invaded his life; there
he found himself completely abased (Job 42:5-6). The manifestation of God
to man has always elicited fear and terror. In the presence of God's
Holiness, a prophet who was consecrated to the Lord saw himself as a leper
in a leprous world -in contrast to the purity of God. When we step into the
presence of God and behold His purity, there is an immediate judgment and
conviction against all sin. We cannot truly reveal the love of God without
proclaiming the severity of His judgments (Romans 2:5, 6:23, 11:22; Hebrews
10:27-29; Ephesians 5:6). The goodness of God brings a healing remedy for
our sin and iniquity when we cry out for mercy in His presence. Just as the
seraphim brought a purifying coal from off the altar of God, the blood of
Jesus is supplied to all who will believe; and all sin is removed and all
iniquities blotted out (Isaiah 6:6-7; 1 John 1:7,9; Revelation 1:5). People
must know that unless they repent, they will perish.

In the presence of Jesus, even those nearest to Him fall down upon their
faces and cry out, "Holy!". The pure and spotless seraphim count themselves
as nothing in the presence of His Holiness. They cover their faces and
their feet, not counting themselves worthy to behold Him, nor even serve
Him; but cry out continually, "Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord!" (Isaiah 6:3;
Revelation 4:8-10). All men should encounter some dimension of the Holiness
of His nature and the wonder of His works when they encounter those who are
filled with His Spirit of Holiness -and much more when they step into the
congregation of the church, which is His fullness (Ephesians 1:22-23). We
must pray for and yield to a greater Holy Ghost conviction in our lives and
churches. If we want the results of former days, then let us observe their
sermons.

Consecrate yourself wholly to the LORD!
 
Daily Bread - June 26, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 27 June 2017 11:39
Genesis 15:1 - After these things the word of Yahweh came to Abram in a
vision saying, Fear not Abram; I am to you a shield, your exceeding great
reward.

What did Abraham do to gain such favor with God? Was this a promise only
for Abraham, or does God desire to extend this same kind of love and
goodness to anyone who will believe? God is definitely no respecter of
persons (Romans 2:11; Ephesians 6:9; Colossians 3:25; 1 Peter 1:17; James
2:9). What He has done for one, He will do for another. He is the loving
God Who will give liberally to anyone who asks (James 1:5). There is no
good thing that He will withhold from those who are willing to walk
uprightly (Psalm 84:11). He is willing to give us freely all things; and
all who will believe are made heirs and co-inheritors with Jesus (Romans
8:17, 32). The Holy Spirit has come to take all of God's fullness and
convey it to us, so that we can understand what has never before been
understood or received (John 16:13-15; Ephesians 3:18-19; 1 Corinthians
2:9-10). The eyes of the Lord search throughout the earth, looking for
anyone who will believe Him and walk with Him, so that He can make them
great (2 Chronicles 16:9; Daniel 11:32; Psalm 18:32; Ephesians 6:10; John
14:12).

The Hebrew word 'magen' (shield) also means "suzerain". A suzerain is a
person who is both a protector and a benefactor. God assured Abraham that
He would be both Abraham's protector and provider, and in Him alone would
Abraham find great reward. If we thought of the greatest thing that we
could ask God to be to us, could we think of anything better? Yet, it is
God Who says this to the man who is willing to walk with Him and believe.
Similarly, God identified Himself as 'El Shaddai' (Genesis 17:1). El
Shaddai is translated "God Almighty" denoting that God alone has absolute
power and authority over all things. He alone is the All-Sufficient One.
The Absolute Sovereign over all creation devoted Himself to the care and
success of Abraham, and will also devote Himself to us as well. If we will
walk with Him, obey, and trust Him, the All-Sufficient One will cause all
His favor and provision to abound to us, so that we have all sufficiency in
all things (2 Corinthians 9:8). God gave Abraham only one requirement: He
told him not to fear; and so we can be certain that this is a requirement
for us as well if we are going to walk in faith (Matthew 8:26; Mark 4:40;
Luke 8:50).

We can be certain that this same grace that was extended to Abraham will be
extended to anyone who is willing to walk out a relationship with the
Almighty God. God will be a suzerain to those who walk in righteousness
(Proverbs 2:7). God will be a suzerain to all who will trust in Him (2
Samuel 22:31). Yahoah God will be a sun and a suzerain: He will give grace
and glory to anyone who is willing to walk with Him (Psalm 84:11) The most
important thing to God is that we trust Him. If we want His promises to be
revealed, then we must believe them no matter what happens. If we will
trust Him and believe those things that He has spoken, we will discover
that God Himself will supply our every need according to His riches in
Glory (Philippians 4:19). He will do superabundantly above all that we can
think or ask according to the power that works within us, if we will simply
live out a relationship of love with Him (Ephesians 3:20). When we dwell in
this realm of His love, then all fear will be driven away; and we will find
that we can absolutely trust the One Whose promises cannot fail, and whose
Word endures forever (1 Peter 1:25; Psalm 119:89, 160; 2 Corinthians 1:20;
Hebrews 10:23). Let your heart now hear the same words that were spoken to
Abraham repeated to you!
 
Daily Bread - June 24, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 24 June 2017 09:20
Romans 6:18 - And then you, having been set free from sin, have become the
servants of righteousness.

Could any stronger language be used to describe God's will for the manner
and behavior of our lives as His saints? God has transformed our lives so
that we might enjoy the blessedness of His abundant life. It is absolutely
impossible to separate God's life and Spirit from His righteousness.

Righteousness is one of the most important subjects of the Bible. There are
approximately 741 occurrences of the word in the Old And New Testaments
combined. In the Old Testament there are two words, which are translated
'righteous' (tzadek and tzadekah). The Hebrew root occurs 508 times in the
Old Testament (523 times according to Anchor Bible Dictionary;
Righteousness-Old Testament). The primary word, which is used for
'righteousness' (dikaiosune from dikaios) is found 91 times in the New
Testament. The Greek root (dikaio-) is found 233 times in the New
Testament. The quintessence of righteousness in the Old Testament is
encapsulated in who God is; "Yahweh is righteous in all of His ways, and
holy in all of His works" (Psalms 145:17).

The concrete meaning for righteousness in the New Testament is shaped by
the way it was used in the Old Testament. Primarily the meaning is derived
from the character of God and the description of His ways. Other examples
are verses and context common to the Old and New Testament, some examples
are: Genesis 15:6 (found in Romans 4:3-22; Galatians 3:6; James 2:23);
Psalms 112:3 (found in 2 Corinthians 9:9); Psalms 45:7 (found in Hebrews
1:9). There are Old Testament associations of the word for righteousness in
Acts 17:31 (with Psalms 9:8; 96:10; 98:9); 2 Corinthians 9:9 (with Hosea
10:12); Ephesians 6:14 (with Isaiah 59:17; 11:5); Revelation 19:11 (with
Psalms 96:13).

In the Old Testament righteousness/righteous is used of God (Psalms 7:9;
116:5; 119:37-40, 145:7); Ezra 9:15; Isaiah 24:16) of His acts (Judges
5:11; 1 Samuel 12:7) of God's people in general (Genesis 18:23-28; Psalms
68:3; Proverbs 21:21; Isaiah 5:23; Ezekiel 3:20; Malachi 3:18) of
individuals such as Noah, Job and Daniel (Genesis 6:9; 7:1; Job 1:1; 2:3;
Ezekiel 14:14, 20).

In the New Testament righteousness and justification are interchangeable.
In fact, when either the Hebrew root or the Greek 'dikaioun' are used, they
can equally be translated "just, justice/justification, justify" from the
Latin, or "right, righteous(ness)," (Anchor Bible Dictionary;
Righteousness-Greco-Roman World). Righteousness/righteous is used of God
the Father (John 17:25); of Jesus (Acts 3:14; 7:52; 1 John 2:1) of the
saints in general (Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; James 5:16; Hebrews 10:38;
1 John 3:7; 1 Peter 3:12); as the result of redemption (Romans 5:17, 19;
3:22; 6:18; 8:10; 9:30; 10:4; 14:17, 4:25; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians
4:24; Philippians 3:9) of individuals such as Joseph (Matthew 1:19); of
Zacharias and Elisabeth (Luke 1:6); of Simeon (Luke 2:25) of Joseph a
member of the council (Luke 23:50) as a category of people (Matthew 5:45;
9:13;10:41, 13:17, 43, 49; 25:37, 46; Luke 1:17; 14:14; Acts 24:15; 2
Corinthians 6:14) of Old Testament saints (Matthew 23:29, 35; Hebrews 11:4).

In the New Testament, we are commanded to pursue righteousness (Matthew
6:33; 1 Timothy 6:11; 2 Timothy 2:22). We are called to be the servants of
righteousness and to live righteously (Romans 6:18,19; 1 Peter 2:24; Titus
1:8; 2:11-14; 2 Corinthians 6:7; 9:10; Romans 1:17; Ephesians 4:24, 6:14;
Philippians 1:11). The New Testament is the message and ministry or
righteousness (2 Corinthians 3:9; Romans 5:18; 14:17; Ephesians 4:24; 2
Corinthians 5:17-21)
 
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