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daily bread
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 07 July 2010 10:44
John 1:43 - The next day he resolved to go to Galilee, and Jesus found
Phillip and said to him: "Follow me."

There are many things about the beginning of the ministry of Jesus that are
a marvel. One of the many marvelous things is how Jesus began by focusing
His attention on just a few people. He would ultimately gather 12 around
Himself, and give them both special attention and a special anointing. The
beginning of the greatest ministry that has ever existed started with Jesus
looking for just one person. Jesus came to seek and to save that which was
lost. His heart of devotion for the lost compelled Him to leave the 99 that
were safe, and go and seek the one. Jesus seeks us out to free us from all
of the affliction and tyranny of sin. He makes us His friends and part of
His family, and our hearts become joined unto His righteous cause. We become
part of the family of God, His own spiritual kin; and what He wants is what
we want. His love for us compels us and overwhelms us - so that we will
follow him wherever He leads.

Jesus was devoted to making His disciples fishers of men (Mark 1:17). He is
also devoted to making us fishers of men as well. He shows us how to love
and see greatness - even in the most wretched of men. He gives us authority
to free them, and patience and faithfulness to train them. If we will
imitate Jesus and focus on reaching just one, and helping them become
established in the faith; it won't be long and we will need a boat (Mark
4:1). The Lord Jesus is devoted to reproducing His ministry in our lives:
giving us the divine ability to help people, and deliver them from their
prison of sickness, disease, and sin. As we receive His love, our hearts are
filled to the brim; and the same love wherewith we are loved flows like
rivers to a dry and thirsty land.
 
daily bread
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 06 July 2010 12:29
1 Peter 1:14 - As obedient children: not conforming to the former desires in
your ignorance.

The former desires are those desires that ruled the passions before the new
birth. The former desires are inspired by the god of this world, the spirit
that works in the children of disobedience. Satan attacks the child of God,
and attempts to impose his desires upon them. The satanic desire is
expressed by all that is in the world: the lust of the flesh, the lust of
the eye, and the pride of life. However, the Holy Calling has not only
called us to be totally separate from all these things, but has empowered us
with the desires of the Father.

As we yield to the Holy Spirit, the joy and wellsprings of holiness flow out
of us as rivers of living water. We find ourselves having only one desire:
and that is to please the Father. His ways become our ways, and His desires
our desires. In this realm of Holy Spirit inspiration, we are called to
resist the devil steadfast in the faith; and not allow those former desires
to have any place in our lives.
 
daily bread
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Monday, 05 July 2010 11:34
Luke 17:10 - So you also, when you have done all you were commanded, say
that "we are servants not deserving of praise, for we have done that which
was our duty."

Surely there can be no higher honor than to be granted the privilege to
function in faith and in the authority of Christ Jesus (John 14:12; John
20:21; Mark 16:17; Acts 1:8). The disciples asked Jesus to increase their
faith, and His response was basically, "Get to work!" We have all received
the same grace that Paul received, but has our response to God been the
same? Paul said: "The grace of God was not bestowed on me in vain, but I
labored more than anyone else" (1 Corinthians 15:10). He was excited and
happy to go to work. There are so many gifts and expressions of the Holy
Ghost that the majority of Christians have never experienced. The reason
they have not stepped into what the apostles and disciples had - after a
very short time with Christ - is that they have not gone to work. We only
need the signs and the wonders and the demonstration of the Spirit when we
are at work. These great exploits and deeds of the Holy Ghost are for
setting the captives free! So let's have some fun, and become engaged in the
ministry of Jesus. We are His ambassadors, His co-laborers, and
co-inheritors (2 Corinthians 5:20; 1 Corinthians 3:9; Romans 8:17). We are
the sons of God with the authority to represent the kingdom; so lets go to
work!

Samson was anointed to deliver Israel from their enemies; so when he was at
work he could walk away with the gates of the city, or kill thousands with
the jawbone of a donkey. Joshua was anointed to lead Israel into the
promised land; so when he was at work he could command the sun to stand
still, and the moon not to move. Now, we have been anointed to preach the
gospel! We have been anointed to proclaim liberty to the captives, the
opening of the prison doors to them which are bound (Luke 4:18; 2
Corinthians 1:21). We can pray and ask God to do all these things through
our lives; but unless we go to work, the anointing is not going to be
demonstrated through us. However, if we are willing to engage in the service
of the King of Kings, then the things that we need to accomplish the task
are going to be there for those who will believe. God has required these
things of us: moving in the faith and the power of the Holy Spirit is our
duty, so no one has to talk God into blessing us with this ability. This is
our servitude, our responsibility. It is what we have been commissioned to
do; so everybody just get busy, and watch as the mighty hand of God works
great exploits of faith through you! Get to work!
 
daily bread
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 03 July 2010 12:45
1 Peter 4:18 - And if the righteous are barely saved, where will the ungodly
and sinners appear?

Certainly the idea of the righteous being barely saved must be understood in
the light of God's absolute Holiness and Purity. It also should result in a
sobriety in the believer: to realize the urgency of our need for God's mercy
and protection in the midst of a wicked and perverse world. Upon hearing
that the "righteous are barley saved," we should be left with a certainty
that there is no room to justify any sort of compromise with sin and
ungodliness.
 
daily bread
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 02 July 2010 15:27
Acts 20:28 - Take heed therefore to yourselves, and to all the flock in
which the Holy Spirit has placed you as overseer: to shepherd the church of
God, which He purchased though His own blood.

Paul issues a command and a warning to the pastors: they must be on guard
against the violent predators that are ready to destroy what God has
purchased with His own blood. In this one verse, the Pastor of a church is
called "shepherd" and "overseer," and carries the unique responsibility of
being the one given charge to protect that which God owns. If the Pastors
should fail to be vigilant, then violent wolves would creep in and destroy
the flock.

When we recognize the role of the church - not only as the light of the
world - but as the corporate Body of Christ and fullness of God, we may then
come to realize the priority that the demonic realm has given to its
destruction. Although a boundary has been set so that the gates of hell
cannot prevail against the church, the craft of Satan can render it
ineffective, unless there are vigilant shepherds. The direction in which the
shepherds are to lead the flock of God is not a subjective one; but one
clearly revealed by the Word of God and the Spirit of God. Anything that
would disrupt or challenge that direction must be regarded as a predator of
God's sheep, and dealt with accordingly.
 
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