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Monday, November 12, 2012

JOSHUA, FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Today’s Hymn, This Is MY Prayer, Mon, 11/12/2012

Joshua 23:1-8,


As his last official act as the leader of Israel, Joshua leads them in a renewal of their covenant with the Lord. This ritual involved several stones. Let’s take a brief look at these stones.

24:25-28 It Involved A Great Stone - Before Joshua dies, he erects a great stone as a monument to the fact that the people have sworn to follow the Lord. Thereafter, whenever they passed by that place they would remember their oath and be certain that their lives were pleasing to the Lord their God.

We do not erect stone markers to memorialize our oaths to the Lord, but still, we remember them don’t we?

Do you remember when you were saved?

Did you promise the Lord that you would faithfully serve Him all the days of your life?

Have you forgotten that promise?

Have you been living like you have forgotten it?

If you have, you can rest assured that God hasn’t! Some of you have promised to be more faithful to the Lord, to pray more, to read your Bibles, to witness for Him. You made the promise, but have you carried it out? You may have forgotten about it, but He hasn’t!

It is far better to never make a promise to God, than it is to make it and then break it, “Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil. Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few. For a dream cometh through the multitude of business; and a fool's voice is known by multitude of words. When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed. Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay.” (Eccl. 5:1-5).

Are you doing all the things you told the Lord you would do? If not, today would be a good day to make that thing right with the Lord! You see, even not doing good is a sin, (James 4:17). Thankfully, God still forgives sin when it is confessed before Him – (1 John 1:9).

24:29-33 It Involved Some Grave Stones - This book closes with three funerals. These funerals speak to us today.

V. 29-31 The Gravestone Of Faithfulness - The first grave stone mentioned is that of Joshua himself. His tombstone spoke about the faithfulness of God to His people! This is the grave of faithfulness. God had used this man Joshua to bring the people in the Promised Land and God had used Joshua to lead the people in the right way. Through the life of Joshua, God had proven Himself to be a faithful God.

Those who serve the Lord soon learn that God is faithful! He will keep His Word and He will fulfill His promises to you,( Rom. 4:21). If you will walk in His will and serve Him, then He will in turn bless you life beyond measure. Our God is a faithful God!

V. 32 The Gravestone Of Fulfillment - The second gravestone mentioned belonged to a man who had died many centuries before in the land of Egypt. This is the grave of fulfillment. While Joseph was on his deathbed, he made the following prediction, “And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die: and God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence. So Joseph died, being an hundred and ten years old: and they embalmed him, and he was put in a coffin in Egypt,” (Gen 50:24-26).

Now, several hundred years later, a grave is dug, a coffin is lowered and body is placed in the ground that was promised hundreds of years before. I can almost imagine that if you listened very carefully to the grave of Joseph after he was buried there, you might have heard that old pile of bones sigh and say, “I told you do, I told you so!”

The lesson here is that we serve a God, Who is able to make that which seems impossible a reality for His children, (Eph. 3:20). When He makes a promise to use and bless you if you will serve Him, then you can count on Him being able to do just what He has promised!

V. 33 The Gravestone Of Finality - The last gravestone marks the grave of Eleazar. He was the son of Aaron the first High Priest. His grave is the grave of finality. The death of Eleazar marks the changing of the guard in Israel. All the old timers are gone! All those who came out of Egypt and out of the wilderness have passed from the scene. All those God used in such a mighty fashion are dead. Now, it is time for a new generation to pick up the mantle of service and do something for the Lord.

It is a shame when old soldiers of Jesus pass from the scene. I have seen some great saints of God go home to be with the Lord. Their presence and gifts are still missed by the church.

It is an even greater shame when those who are left behind do not lift the mantle and carry on for the Lord. Israel turned to idols after the deaths of their great leaders. Likewise, the modern church has forsaken the path laid down by those who have gone before. God help us to be like Elisha, who lifted the mantle of Elijah and cried out to God, “You did it for Elijah, now do it for me!,”( 2 Kings 2:12-14)!

Conc: Where are the Joshua’s and Elisha’s today? Where are those who will stand up and be counted for Jesus? Where are those who are tired of business as usual and want to see God moving in power in the midst of His people? Where are those who are willing to pay the price of personal sacrifice and holiness that they might be bright torches in the hand of God?

When those who had known the glory of God died out in Israel, those who were left behind turned to other gods and to wickedness. There is a generation in our midst who know nothing of the power of God. They know a church filled with people who claim to love Jesus, but who deny Him by the lives they live. They no longer see Him moving in power in the services.

We need some people who are willing to pay the price for the power of God, who will step forward and get themselves in these altars and call on God until He moves in their lives, forever changing them and their world.

The God of Elijah is not dead! The God of Moses and of Joshua is not dead! He is alive and well! The problem with our generation is that there are no Elijah’s, no Moses’ and no Joshua’s. God is still willing to use anyone who will make himself or herself available to Him. Is that person you?

D.L. Moody, as a young man heard Henry Varley say, “The world has yet to see what God can do with and for and through and in and by the man who is fully and wholly consecrated to Him.”

Moody said, “I will be that man!” And he was!

God used him to touch two continents for Jesus. God is still looking for someone who will come to Him and say, “I will be that man!” I ask again, is that person you?

“Great Is Thy Faithfulness” By: Thomas O. Chisholm (1923)

"Great is Thy faithfulness," O God my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.
"Great is Thy faithfulness!" "Great is Thy faithfulness!"
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—
"Great is Thy faithfulness," Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above,
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thy own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Father of Heaven, God of Earth! We pray You would help us to be the person who has a heart for You and for Your ways; one who is in the right place at the right time. Enable us as we fast and pray to have the powerful effect on the world around us by standing up for what is right and following Jesus’ lead. Make our prayers powerful enough to save the lives of the people for whom we pray. Teach us to be faithful, just like YOU. This we pray and ask in the powerful name of Jesus our Lord. Amen!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANHELIC 11/12/2012 9:56PM

    Thank you Vic for an awesome lesson, hymn, one of my favorites and prayer. Great is thy faithfulness. God is faithful and will help us get through out days if we are faithful to Him to our best ability. Thank you for teaching us God's word.
God bless you Vic.

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NADINEL 11/12/2012 2:47PM

    Thanks Vic, for your prayer and your blog. The song is one of my favorites.

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HAGIN2010 11/12/2012 10:43AM

    Thanks for another great blog Vic

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GRACED777 11/12/2012 8:35AM

    I love that hymn as well, friend! And I appreciate and agree with the message. May the Lord bless your seeking Him.

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TONYVAND1 11/12/2012 8:34AM

  What a great and mighty God we serve. You are right , God is not dead. Great is His faithfulness each and every day.

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LINDAMARIEZ1 11/12/2012 7:53AM

    I made more than 3 better choices yesterday because of God! I smiled and did the better! thanks for that lesson my friend!
linda emoticon

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DAWN14163 11/12/2012 7:38AM

    My very favourite hymn. Great is thy faithfulness, Lord unto me! Happy Monday, Vic.

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Sunday, November 11, 2012

JOSHUA, FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Today’s Hymn, This Is MY Prayer, Sun, 11/11/2012

Joshua 23:1-8


In this section, Joshua challenges the elders and the people to observe certain truths concerning God. His challenge is for them to look at what the Lord has done and is doing in their lives. If they will just consider the Lord, they are more likely to live the right kind of lives!

23:9-16 A Challenge About The Wrath Of God - While there are many challenges given here, the primary idea that Joshua is trying to convey is this: “If you will serve the Lord, He will bless you. If you disobey Him, He will chastise you!” The challenge in verse 11 in the crux of the matter! How Israel responded to the Lord, was a perfect indicator of her love for Him.

This challenge still applies to the people of God today. That admonition is very simple: You play; you pay! As a child of God, you have two possible ways of living your life. You can either live it within the confines of God’s will and be blessed, or you can live outside the will of God and be chastised, (Heb. 12:5-11)! The choice is yours! The choices you make in life will be determined by the depth of your love for the Lord Jesus Christ and for the Heavenly Father, (John 14:15).

Rev. 2:1-7 - The church at Ephesus had many commendable traits, but they lacked deep, abiding love for Jesus. We can say what we want to say, but the way we live our lives proves the depth of our love for Him!

24:1-13 A Challenge About The Works Of God - Joshua reminds the nation of all the many great things the Lord has done for them. His challenge is for them to remember all the works of the Lord on their behalf. If they will remember His goodness, they will be more likely to serve Him faithfully.

The mighty works of the Lord on our behalf should motivate us to greater service! When we stop to think of all He has done, it should challenge us to go deeper in our relationship with Him.

Think of:
How He died for us on the cross.
How He loved us when we were lost.
How He came to us in our sins.
How He called us unto Himself.
How He saved us when we asked Him to.
How He forgave all our sins and failures.
How He adopted us into His family.
How He has promised us a home in Heaven.
How He has met our needs; how He has blessed our lives.
How He has never left us nor forsaken us, even though, at times, we have forsaken Him.
Think on His greatness and goodness toward you.

Let those blessings from the Lord be the motivator for you to renew you relationship with Him today!

24:14-18 A Challenge About The Will Of God - Joshua tells the people that it is the Lord’s will for them to clean up their lives and to serve the Lord faithfully. He makes the statement that he and his family will do just that,(v. 15)! The people respond by expressing their desire to serve God because of His greatness and His blessings!
I just want to challenge you today by reminding you that talk about serving the Lord is not just good teaching material; it is the will of God for your life! He wants you to search your life and destroy anything in it that hinders your walk with Him. He wants you to be clean and to make that commitment to serve Him only!

Notice Joshua’s attitude toward the situation, (v. 15). He tells them what he expects the nation of Israel to do, but then he tells them that regardless of what they do, he is going to serve God!

What a lesson for us as individuals! The sad fact of the matter is that not everyone is going to serve the Lord with total commitment. There will always be those who will remain on the fringe of things. These people will have no desire to sell out completely to the will of God for their lives.

Listen, the whole church does not have to get right with God for you to! We need to lose the mind set that looks at others and measures ourselves against how they are doing. Your relatives, your fellow church members, your friends you neighbors, etc, are not the standard you are to reach for! Our standard is none other that the Lord Jesus Christ! God saved us to be like Him and that is what we should strive for,( Phil. 3:4-14).
24:19-24- To Consider God’s Witness - Joshua makes a strange statement to the people.

He tells them that they cannot serve the Lord! His meaning is clear. He is reminding them that the Lord witnesses their lives and they cannot have things both ways. That is, they cannot serve the Lord on the one have hand, and serve false God’s on the other! His reminder is that judgment will accompany such an action. Again, the people proclaim their desire to follow the Lord.

May I remind you that the Lord is also watching your life today, (Pro. 15:3). My friends, you cannot have things both ways! Either you are serving the Lord with absolute commitment, or you are living a life of hypocrisy! Many in our day are like the Israelites were during Elijah’s day. Many are trying to walk the fence between devotion to God and living for themselves, (1 Kings 18:21)! When we warn the people today, we get the same response that Elijah got from the people on Mt. Carmel.

“One Day” By: J. W. Chapman (1910)

1.One day when Heaven was filled with His praises,
One day when sin was as black as could be,
Jesus came forth to be born of a virgin,
Dwelt among men, my example is He!
Living, He loved me; dying, He saved me;
Buried, He carried my sins far away;
Rising, He justified freely forever;
One day He’s coming—oh, glorious day!

2.One day they led Him up Calvary’s mountain,
One day they nailed Him to die on the tree;
Suffering anguish, despised and rejected:
Bearing our sins, my Redeemer is He!

3.One day they left Him alone in the garden,
One day He rested, from suffering free;
Angels came down o’er His tomb to keep vigil;
Hope of the hopeless, my Savior is He!

4.One day the grave could conceal Him no longer,
One day the stone rolled away from the door;
Then He arose, over death He had conquered;
Now is ascended, my Lord evermore!

5.One day the trumpet will sound for His coming,
One day the skies with His glories will shine;
Wonderful day, my beloved ones bringing;
Glorious Savior, this Jesus is mine!

THIS IS MY PRAYER! (Shared with me by a Spark-Friend)
Father, we ask you to bless our friends. We ask You to minister to their spirit at this very moment. Where there is pain, give them Your peace and mercy; Where there is self-doubting, release a renewed confidence in Your ability to work through them; Where there is tiredness, or exhaustion, we ask You to give them understanding, patience, and strength as they learn submission to your leading. Where there is spiritual stagnation, we ask You to renew them by revealing Your nearness, and by drawing them into greater intimacy with You; Where there is fear, reveal Your love, and release to them Your courage; Where there is a sin blocking them, reveal it, and break its hold over their life. Bless their finances, give them greater vision, and raise up leaders and friends to support and encourage them. Give each of them discernment to recognize the evil forces around them, and reveal to them the power they have in You to defeat it. We ask You to do these things in Jesus' name. Amen!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANHELIC 11/11/2012 11:30PM

    Thank you Vic for another awesome lesson, hymn and prayer. Your list is one that I will print off and keep in my devotion book so I can refer to it several times. I needed this lesson today to remind me. God bless you for sharing God's word with us.

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TONYVAND1 11/11/2012 5:36PM

  Another great blog Vic. Thanks for the How list it was just what I needed for today. Reflected on Christ's finished work as I walked today.

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LINDAMARIEZ1 11/11/2012 7:34AM

    I printed the HOW HE list! It is on my fridge! I'll read it daily if not more! Thank you for sharing this!

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DIANER2014 11/11/2012 7:04AM

    I agree,today is gonna be a great day. Thanks Vic for being a part of my great day! Have an awesome Sunday and stay Blessed! emoticon

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JSTETSER 11/11/2012 6:52AM

    Looks like it will be a great day!

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Saturday, November 10, 2012

FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Today’s Hymn, This Is My Prayer, Sat, 11/10/2012

Joshua 23:1-8

Verse 1 sums up the context of this passage very well. Israel has acquired the land that God had promised them and their faithful leader, Joshua, is old and is preparing to die, v. 14. Before he steps off the scene, he has something to say about serving the Lord.
In order to communicate what is on his heart, he calls two meetings.

The first, in chapter 23, is held with the elders and leaders of the people.

The second, recorded in chapter 24, involves all the people of Israel.

As Joshua, the faithful old soldier and general of Israel, prepares to break camp, he wants to encourage Israel to stay the course for God. He knows that the old guard, those who knew Moses and Joshua, are swiftly dying off. He knows that a new generation is coming along that did not see all the miracles and all the wonders of the Lord in their midst. Before he dies, he just wants to remind them of the God they serve.

In these two chapters, there are some valuable lessons for us. We live in a day when many have forgotten about the glory and power of God, and those who have known about such things are becoming fewer by the day. We need to be reminded of the power and glory of our God. Our children need to be exposed to His power!

These verses tells us what we need to know about keeping God’s work alive. As we consider the thoughts contained here, please allow the Lord to instruct your heart and then allow Him to make whatever changes are necessary in your life. If we will hear His voice and obey His commands, the world around us will see the glory and power of God at work in His church and in the lives of His people.

Go with me to ancient Israel as old general Joshua issues his last orders to his troops. Notice the thoughts that occupied the heart and mind of this great man as he neared the end of his journey. These thoughts were designed to teach Israel about the way and will of God for their nation. These thoughts also speak to the way and will of God for His church. Let’s notice these thoughts together as we consider An Old General’s Final Orders.

As Joshua nears the time of his departure, he sees some changes occurring in the life of Israel. He sees changes that he does not like. So, like any good leader, he feels duty bound to address these issues before he departs.

We preachers have the same duty as Joshua. When we see error in the lives of people, we have a duty before God to tell people about those errors. Why? We tell them God love them, we love them and we want to help them walk in the will of God for their lives.

V. 6 He Fears Their Complacency - Joshua is afraid that the people of Israel might begin to take the Law of God for granted. He fears that they might become complacent in their walk with the Lord and begin to let things slide in their lives. Tragically, he was right, this is exactly what they did!

It is my conviction that the sins of complacency and apathy are among the most common and devastating sins that exist among the people of God! We have allowed ourselves to adopt a Laodicean attitude - (Rev. 3:14-22). We have allowed ourselves to be satisfied with our spiritual condition and as a result, we are allowing issues to go unchallenged in our lives that are leading us away from God and deeper into sin! Like the Laodicean Christians, we are neither hot or cold.

The water situation in Laodicea. Cold water was piped down the mountains Colossae, and hot water was piped in from Hieropolis. By the time each of these waters reached Laodicea, they were lukewarm.

Just like this water, the modern church is neither refreshing like a drink of cool water, nor is she stimulating like a hot bath. We are lukewarm and fit for nothing, but to trigger a gag reflex in those acquainted with us!

This is an unfortunate, but accurate, description of many in the modern church! Many here at Calvary have been bitten by the complacency bug. We are no longer striving to serve the Lord, win the lost and live holy, consecrated lives to the glory of God. We no longer come to the house of the Lord excited to be saved and ready for worship. Instead, we are self-satisfied and confident in our spiritual achievements! That is a dangerous condition to be in!

V. 7 He Fears Their Compromise - Another fear Joshua possesses is that the people of Israel will go after the dead gods of Canaan. He fears they will compromise their standards and bow down to idols. Again, this is exactly what happened in Israel!
What about us? Aren’t we just as guilty as Israel? Have not the people of God given their affection to other gods? Certainly, many worship the gods of self, success, materialism, career, etc.

The truth is, many are guilty of compromise in their lives. We allow ourselves to indulge in activities that we know God disproves of. We do things that we know are wrong and try to justify it by saying, “Well, so and so does it!” All the while we smile and sing, “Oh how I love Jesus!” It has a hollow ring to it my friend!

Oh, how we need to avoid the trap of compromise! Isn’t it true that some of you are doing things today that you used to think were wrong? God hasn’t changed! You have! You have compromised your standards and given in to the will of your flesh! Remember 1 Thes. 5:22? “Abstain from all appearance of evil.” If it looks wrong, smells wrong, or even seems wrong; it is wrong, and the child of God must avoid it!

V. 8 He Fears Their Commitment - It is not that Joshua fears that they will be committed to the Lord. Rather, he fears that they will not cleave to the Lord as they should. Once again, we see, from the history of the nation of Israel, that Joshua was right to be concerned.

As with these two other problem areas, there is a word here for the church. It has become painfully obvious in recent days that the commitment of many is not where it should be!

Note the Lord Jesus’ idea of commitment: “He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me,” (Matt 10:38).

Do you see what the Lord is saying? He is telling us very clearly that if He is not number one in our hearts and in our lives, then we are not worthy of Him! Also, according to Jesus, the ultimate expression of love for Him is in the willingness to bear one’s cross. This simply means that you are willing to make a total commitment to the Lord Jesus. That you are holding nothing back. You are His completely! How would you describe you commitment to Him today?

“Where He Leads Me I Will Follow” By: John S. Norris (1890)

I can hear my Savior calling,
I can hear my Savior calling,
I can hear my Savior calling,
“Take thy cross and follow, follow Me.”
Where He leads me I will follow,
Where He leads me I will follow,
Where He leads me I will follow;
I’ll go with Him, with Him, all the way.

I’ll go with Him through the garden,
I’ll go with Him through the garden,
I’ll go with Him through the garden,
I’ll go with Him, with Him all the way.

I’ll go with Him through the judgment,
I’ll go with Him through the judgment,
I’ll go with Him through the judgment,
I’ll go with Him, with Him all the way.

He will give me grace and glory,
He will give me grace and glory,
He will give me grace and glory,
And go with me, with me all the way.

Father of Mercy, Almighty God! We lift up to You this morning, our weaknesses. We understand that it is possible to be led by the Holy Spirit into a time of temptation and testing. Help us to lean upon your understanding and strength and not ours. Help us to understand that what God intended for good, like food, can be used to distract us from Your purpose by the evil one. Help us to stay focused on Jesus. Help us to understand that Satan knows how to use our flesh, our insecurities, our ambitions and even Scripture against us. Help us to memorize Scripture because the spoken word is a powerful force against spiritual distraction. Thank You, Father, for reminding us that Jesus is truly human and fully divine, and fully worthy of being our Lord and Savior of our life. Spirit of God, leads us we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LINDAMARIEZ1 11/10/2012 7:12PM

    I love today hymn Vic! thank you for the lesson! emoticon

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ANHELIC 11/10/2012 5:59PM

    Thank you Vic for another great lesson, hymn and prayer. What a great reminded that we need to have God as number one in our lives above all others. We also need to learn to lean on Him and encourage others to be completely His. I know I need to be completely His and follow His path to righteousness. Thank you for the goodies and notes. God bless you for teaching us more about God's word.

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EDITOR 11/10/2012 3:35PM

    What a great lesson today for soldiers of the cross, and God's perfect timing for Veterans Day tomorrow. Thank you! Also thank you for your goodies and notes which encourages and exhorts us to remain in Him.

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TONYVAND1 11/10/2012 12:53PM

  Another great reminder for us that God want's all of us. We cannot live in the world and with Him at the same time.

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CASTIRONLADY 11/10/2012 9:31AM

    God has blessed you richly and ordained that you share your blessing with us. I thank God and I thank you!

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IAM_HIS2 11/10/2012 8:57AM

    This is a very special blog. It speaks a lot about what many Christians need to be aware of. Thank you Vic.

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HAGIN2010 11/10/2012 8:40AM

    Thanks Vic. You have given me a lot to think about especially right before another stressful day at work.

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Friday, November 09, 2012

JOSHUA, FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Today’s Hymn, This Is My Prayer, Fri, 11/9/2012

Joshua 20:1-9


Notice The Picture In Their Names - These six cities paint a wonderful picture of the provisions of God which are ours through the Lord Jesus Christ.

Kadesh - Righteousness –( Isa. 64:4; 2 Cor. 5:21)- There is a refuge for the unclean!

Shechem - Shoulder – (Luke 15:3-7)- There is a refuge for those who lost in the wilderness of sin.

Hebron - Fellowship – (1 John 1:7)- There is a refuge for those separated from God by their sin.

Bezer - Fortress –(Heb. 18:2)- There is a refuge for those who are helpless against the powers of sin and Satan.

Ramoth – Heights – (Eph. 2:6)- There is a refuge for those who have been crushed under the weight of their sins.

Golan - Joy –( 1 Peter 1:8) There is a refuge for those who have been defeated, devastated and destroyed by their sins.

Notice The Picture In Their Necessity - Without these cities, many innocent people would have died. But, their existence guaranteed that they would continue to enjoy life.
My lost friend, you might not see it today, but you need Jesus in your life! Without Him, you have no refuge from the wrath of God and will one day wind up in Hell, lost forever in torment! You may not like that today, but it is still the truth! The simple fact is this: You need to be saved today! You can live without a lot of things in this world, but you cannot make it to Heaven without Jesus!

Notice The Picture In Their Nature - These cities by their very nature spoke of the grace of God and of His love for the needy. They were there because God cares!

The same is true about Jesus! He is there for your salvation simply because God cares about you! You do not have to remain in your sins. You do not have to die and go to Hell. God has provided a place of safety! He loves you, and He proved His love for you when He allowed His Son, Jesus, to suffer on the cross in your place, (Rom. 5:8). Jesus is The Place of Safety! Run to Him and be saved! Run from Him and be lost forever!

Conc: There is an interesting story in the book of 2 Samuel. In chapter 2, we see a man named Abner, who had been Saul’s Commander-in-chief, being pursued by a man named Asahel, (2 Sam. 2:18-24). Abner tries to reason with Asahel, but Asahel continues to pursue Abner. Abner is carrying a spear and apparently, Asahel runs into the spear and dies.

Later, we find Abner at the gates of the city of Hebron. Remember, Hebron was one of the Cities of Refuge. There, he is met by Joab, David’s Commander-in-chief. Joab is also the older brother of Asahel. Joab catches Abner at the gate of the city of refuge and kills him, to avenge the death of Asahel, (2 Sam. 3:27).
Salvation is possible only in Christ Jesus. We need to be “IN CHRIST” to be saved. Those outside of Christ will perish.

What is most striking are the comments made by King David as he mourned the death of Abner, 2 Sam. 3:32-34. It is as if David were saying, “Abner, you died like a fool! You were right there at the gates of the refuge. All you had to do was walk right in. Nobody had you tied up! You could have been saved, but you died like a fool!”
Don’t let that happen to you! Nobody has you tied down today. All you need do is walk into the refuge and be saved.

If you are tired of running from your sins and of feeling trapped in a hopeless situation, I would like to invite you to to come to Jesus right now. If you will come to Him and ask Him by faith, He will save your soul and take you to Heaven when you leave this world.
Isn’t that what you really want?

Aren’t you tired of empty promises and dead end days? Aren’t you sick of knowing that Hell is ever expanding and is waiting on you? Wouldn’t you like to be sure that you will go to Heaven when you die?

If you need Jesus in your heart and life I invite you to come to Him right now. He will give you life!

If you have entered into that Place Of Safety and you are saved today, you should come before the Lord and praise Him for all He has done for you in Christ!

“Thank You, Lord!” By: Dennis I. Jernigan (1990)



Merciful Father, God of Heaven and Earth! Your eyes are always on the righteous, but your face is against those who do evil. We thank O God, that You not only hear our prayers, You also see our hearts. You know our needs. How grateful we are that when you see us, You see the righteousness of Jesus in us and not the sinner that we are. We thank You for Jesus who has brought wonderful changes into our lives and all the blessings we enjoy because of Him. May the life we live bring praise, glory and honor to You. This we pray in the Beloved name of Jesus. Amen!.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUNSETBREEZE05 11/9/2012 6:28PM

    I love "This is my prayer." Thanks Vic!

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BABY_GIRL69 11/9/2012 3:46PM

    I would like to go to the city of Golan...I would probably enjoy the fellowship with those who lived there...Thank you Brother Vic!! Your thoughts & prayers are often with me as I continue to renew & refresh daily..

God bless you Brother Vic!!


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POETLKNG2LOSE 11/9/2012 2:46PM

    Thank you Vic for the message today. We all need to run to Jesus when we sin and he will be our advocate with the Father. Sinners and the saved we all need Him. We need Him to help us live right.

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HAGIN2010 11/9/2012 10:29AM

    Thank you Vic. I would have needed to go to one of those cities. I am glad to have found refuge inGods grace through Jesus Christ.

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ANHELIC 11/9/2012 8:37AM

    Thank you Vic for a great lesson, hymn and prayer. I love the words of the hymn. We can all run to Jesus, ask Him to save us and be safe with Him and not have to be afraid. I love Jesus and am glad I accepted Him into my heart. God bless you Vic for teaching us God's word. Thank you for the goodie and your kind message.

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TONYVAND1 11/9/2012 8:27AM

  Thank you Jesus for your goodness and grace. Thanks Vic for reminding us Newhart Christ has done for us.

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LINDAMARIEZ1 11/9/2012 6:42AM

    My life is God's will! thank you Vic!

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Thursday, November 08, 2012

JOSHUA, FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Today’s Hymn, This Is My Prayer, Thu, 11/8/2012

Joshua 20:1-9


Their Availability - God provided six cities of refuge. There were three on the east side of the Jordan River and three on the west side of the Jordan River. They were placed so that they were available to everyone no matter where they were or who they were! Whether the manslayer was a son or a stranger, there was a city of refuge open for him.

What a picture this is! Just as those ancient cities were available to all, so Jesus Christ is available to all as well. The plan of salvation makes only one requirement upon an individual. The person who would be saved must be a sinner! If you are a sinner and know it; if you are willing to admit that to God; if you can know and believe that Jesus died on the cross, shedding His blood to pay for your sins and that He rose again from the dead, then you can be saved! You can be saved today! You do not have to run from the avenger of blood for even another minute, but you can run to Jesus and be saved by the grace of God. Jesus is available to you today – ( Isa. 55:6; 2 Cor. 6:2; Matt. 11:28; Rev. 3:20).

Their Accessibility - Just as these cities were spaced all over the country and were available to every Israelite, they were also accessible to every person. There are several reasons why I say that.

They Were Prominent - Most of these cities were built on top of mountains. Most of the cities of ancient Israel were built of white limestone. When the sun hit these cities they gleamed. Even in the night, under the light of the moon, they would be visible. They were easily seen, even from many miles away.

They Were Prepared - There were certain preparations that were made in and around these cities that guaranteed the manslayer that he would find safety when he arrived at the city of refuge.

The Roads Were Never Clogged - The priests would made sure that the roads leading to these cities were clear from obstructions and always open to the traveler.

The Gates Were Never Closed - No matter what the time of day or night, the gates on the city of refuge were never closed.

The Direction Was Never Confused - There were sign posts with the Hebrew word “Miklat” written on them that had been set up to point the way to the city of refuge. That word means “Refuge” There was no need for anyone to misunderstand the way to get there.

What a picture these things paint for us of the salvation that can be found in Jesus Christ. Just like the cities of refuge, He is accessible to all.

Like a city set on top of a hill, He can be seen by the weary traveler.

The road leading to Him is always clear. On His side, there are no obstructions. When He died on the cross, He died for all sin, so sin is not a problem that can keep you from coming. He has cleared the way! The only things that can keep you from getting to Him are those things you lay in your own path. Things like unbelief and pride.

He is always available! Jesus Christ is never closed. He will receive anyone who will come to Him at any time! He is waiting for you to show up!

The way to Him is clearly marked. Thankfully, God has gone before and placed the signpost we call the Bible. It is clear in what it teaches us about Jesus Christ. It tells us that He is the only way to God –( John 14:6). And that if we will come to Him, then we must come by faith.

There is a word here for the children of the Lord. You see, those of us who know about the refuge are to go out into the highways and the hedges and we are to set up the signs pointing the way to Him. There should be no doubt about where we stand! We need to be pointing the way to Jesus at all times. That is why we always need to have a clear word and a clear message. Everything we do should point men to our blessed Savior.

“Beyond This Land of Parting” By: Mary B.C. Slade, (1876)

Beyond this land of parting, losing, and leaving
Far beyond the losses, darkening this,
And far beyond the taking and the bereaving,
Lies a summer land of bliss!

Land beyond, so fair and bright!
Land beyond, where is no night!
Summer land, God is it's light,
Oh, happy summer land of bliss!

Beyond this land of toiling, sowing and reaping,
Far beyond the shadows darkening this,
And far beyond the sighing, moaning, and weeping,
Lies a summerland of bliss!

Repeat Chorus

Beyond this land of waiting, seeking, and sighing,
Far beyond the sorrows darkening this,
And far beyond the pain, and sickness and dying,
Lies a summer land of bliss!

Repeat Chorus

Father of Heaven, God of earth! We know that as we think in our heart, so we shall be; that whatever we sow, we shall reap. Thank You Father for educating us according to Your will and direction. Thank You for the teachings of Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Continue to inspire us and guide us in our pursuit of life here on earth with our eyes on Jesus and heaven as our home. Purify our hearts and our thinking and forgive us when we fall short of Your expectations. These things we pray and ask in the blessed name of Jesus. Amen!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANHELIC 11/8/2012 11:16PM

    Thank you Vic for a great lesson, hymn and prayer. Jesus is out stronghold and our refuge. We can run to Him and feel safe and secure. God bless you for sharing God's word with us.

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TONYVAND1 11/8/2012 1:42PM

  The Lord is my refuge and strength in Him do I trust

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BUFFEDSTUFF-- 11/8/2012 12:33PM

  Thanks for being faithful to the mission. emoticon

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CANBDONE 11/8/2012 11:06AM

    He is my Refuge, my Hightower, my Rock...

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HAGIN2010 11/8/2012 10:11AM

    Great blog Vic!!!

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LINDAMARIEZ1 11/8/2012 7:25AM

    May I always be what he expects of me!

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LEANJEAN6 11/8/2012 7:01AM

    Very nice!

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DIANER2014 11/8/2012 7:00AM

    Thanks Vic! emoticon

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