Wednesday, April 24, 2013

LIBERTY! FREEDOM!

Suggested Reading: Galatians 5-6

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Ruins of the theatre of ancient Pergamos, one of the seven cities of Revelation (Rev. 2:12-17), located in north-western Turkey. Galatia is not far from here.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Galatians 5:6

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision or uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.

One form or another of the word “circumcision” is used in today’s reading 10 times. I think Paul wants us to pay attention! The practise of circumcision was the most unique demand of the Law. The Jewish man was set aside in this way from all other men. Paul, himself, would have been circumcised, as was Jesus, on the eighth day after His birth. Dr. Nelles Silverthorne, renowned pediatrician, said on the 100 Huntley Street telecast that on the eighth day of a child’s life, the blood congeals more quickly than at any other time. God, who initiated this practise, chose the right day of a boy’s life. Those who wanted to convert non-Jewish believers in Jesus into Jews were insisting that men of 30 or 70 must go through this practise in order to be saved. This is why Paul, the Apostle of Jesus, made such a strong statement: “Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage” (Galatians 5:1). Both Jewish and non-Jewish believers in Jesus are a new creation. Jesus has changed lives and practises dramatically! What a glorious difference He makes!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, I thank You for the liberty You bring. It’s fine for a non-Jew to remain as they are in terms of the outward physical sign of circumcision. I need Your life in me to produce the outward manifestations of the fruit of the Spirit. This is Your new law! Help me to “through love serve one another,” and to “bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” Thank You for reminding me through Paul that “all the law is fulfilled in one word, even this, you shall love your neighbour as yourself, but if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another” (Galatians 5:14-15). I pray that I will learn these lessons well. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

It’s amazing to me that the same kind of people who sought to put the Galatian men into bondage are still at it today. One of my grandsons works in a warehouse where he unloads trucks from suppliers and then loads other trucks for distribution to the big box stores. His co-worker, a man in his 30’s, came in the other day in great discomfort. He was obviously in some pain, and my grandson had to do work which had been shared between them in the past. Finally, my grandson learned the truth. This man from Latin America was in a religion that demanded men, non-Jews, to be circumcised in order to fulfill the law. I wonder what Paul meant in Galatians 5:12 where he wrote, “I could wish that those who trouble you would even cut themselves off!” Paul used very strong language to make his point absolutely clear.

Yours to encourage us to “stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free,”

David

P.S. As I mentioned earlier this week, I had the privilege of attending the funeral service of George Beverly Shea in North Carolina this past Sunday. It was a glorious home-going celebration service! Now a video of it is available for you to watch online. Near the beginning of the video, you’ll hear a recording of Bev Shea singing the song “Safe In The Arms of Jesus.” He is experiencing that place right now. You’ll find the video online HERE.

21 thoughts on “Wednesday, April 24, 2013

  1. We should never take the freedom we have in Christ for granted. Christ’s sacrifice has forever positioned us in such a way that we are eternally His; we need only to believe upon Him for this salvation. Generally speaking, many don’t come to the Lord because His plan seems too easy. There’s no striving or hard work involved in ‘believing’. Many feel there needs to be a mountain to climb in order to earn or merit their salvation, this of course is salvation through works. We can no longer earn our salvation any more than we can grant that same salvation, it’s just not possible. How can we save ourselves? We can’t. We can only rest in the exchanged life that Christ has offered us by dying upon the Cross at Calvary, and then believe and live the exchanged life He offers. Jesus loved us that much! This life we live is a journey, but the Lord will carry us through our trials and temptations in His power and will one day guide us home to be with Him forevermore.

  2. A moving and wonderful tribute to George Beverly Shea! I admire how his spirit touched so many lives and how George set an example of truly living in the light of the kingdom of God. Enjoy this day in the spirit of Christ!

  3. Thank the Lord for “a better way”. It’s a way for all to be able to reach Jesus. My sister suffered severe brain damage as an infant. She is now physically disabled as well BUT SHE KNOWS JESUS AND SHE PORTRAYS HIS LOVE TO ALL – EVEN TO THOSE SUFFERING FROM ALZHEIMERS AND THOSE IN A COMA. SHE IS APPRECIATED BY PATIENTS WHO HAVE LITTLE OR NO ENGLISH! If we had to work our way to salvation, she would be unable to “perform”. Salvation is a gift and receiving Jesus is THE WAY. THANK YOU LORD.

  4. The outer context of Paul’s message to the Galatians in 5-6 was about the higher ground of faith we must stand on, over the law (in this case, circumcision) and countering negative influences of others. The example of your grandson’s co-worker, David, was so fitting. I felt so badly for him.

    Paul’s message applies to every area in life. We are FREE in Christ, because of the selfless sacrifice He made for us on the cross; therefore, let us not be swayed or deterred. When we become alienated, we fall away from grace. Indeed, when that happens, we can’t look outside of ourselves and blame others. We are responsible to stay grounded as Christians in our faith. The Spirit of Christ may live within us but it is up to us to remain true to it, nurture it, and keep it alive–through regular prayer, daily devotions, worship, praise, and staying strongly footed in the Word.

    We get pulled away, so easily, at times by difficulties in life. Everyone has a particular area of concern. For me, chronic pain attempts to destroy my spirit. I only have to think of others facing much more devastating circumstances to count my blessings, and be reminded that God gave me the grace to overcome my challenges.

    The strength from this blog keeps me focused and motivated to want so much more–to be a gift to God, others, and myself. After all, we are each of us, living and breathing cells within the body of Christ. If a painting, we would each be a petal of a beautiful flower in the ever growing garden of life.

    To know that we have Christ and the freedom He afforded us! We have the Word to rely on for strength and encouragement and guidance! The more we engage in Scripture, the more it lives and breathe within us, and ultimately becomes us. David Mainse and his family of believers are the example for us to witness.

    When we read the incredible words of wisdom from Paul and rejoice knowing that we are FREE to love and be loved by the Spirit of Christ that resides within us. What more could we possibly ask for?

    “The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.” 6. WOW! The poetic nuances and ultimate power of truth in that statement, alone, made by Paul, blows me away! Such depth and meaning, beyond words!

    Have you noticed that Paul is my favourite apostle? He just tells it like it is, with an undaunted flavour–such a mighty warrior running for the cause of Jesus! It is up to each one of us to be accountable for running in the right direction–towards the finish line. Let us wave the banner of Jesus high and know we have finished the race well!

    Blessings to all fellow saints, today!

    • Fellow Saint, I am one of Lord’s intercessor’s and for years that Holy Spirit moves me to pray daily for those who are in chronic pain that God will sustain them with His Love and Compassion. So often I get discouraged praying these general prayers, for people I do not know or go on faith that God is answering these prayers in some way.
      I was about to give up on these prayers, when I read your post. I believe the Lord has lead me to this website, to see in you, that He answering those prayers, He sustaining you, and there can be many others as well. It has been a great encouragement to know I am not wasting my breath, praying these kind of prayers. He is so faithful, praise be to God.

      • Praise be to God, amen! God is so incredible that way-
        how He uses us for each other and shows us, when we need to see.

        “We are each of us angels, with only one wing, and we can only fly by embracing one another.” Titus Lucretius Carus

        Thank you for being one of His angels, and for praying on behalf of myself and others with chronic pain. It means the world to me to know you are praying for me! You are a true blessing! God Bless you and keep you, sister Donna!

  5. Amen, David especially to your prayer for today. Amen to you, other fellow bloggers. I am taking your prayer with me today as I go out to celebrate my birthday; another decade. Remember the song, “I’m a new creation, I’m a brand new man(or woman). Galations reminds me of that. Have a great day everyone!

  6. Thank you David for sharing the videos of George Beverly Shea’s life, it was a real blessing to me this morning. From the reading today Paul tells us to share with our teachers the good things God is doing in our lives. Our Pastors are really encouraged and blessed as we let them know what a positive impact they are having through their ministries. It is truly amazing how our Lord cares about everything! Thank you again for your wonderful Blog.

  7. Thanks so much for this daily blog. You continue to bless people and bring people to Jesus. God is pleased. I especially appreciate the link to Bev Shea’s memorial.

  8. Good day David and fellow bloggers what a wonderful day and a beautiful message from Paul this morning feeling so blessed and free knowing that Jesus is my lord and saviour. I so enjoyed the video of George Bev Shea memorial service this morning thank you David for sharing this with us. Lets us continue to love one another like Christ love the church. Happy Birthday Ger! Have a blessed wongerful day all in the mighty name of Jesus Amen.

  9. I also want to say thank you so much for the G .Bev Shea Memorial
    service so up lifting and to remember such a great saint beautiful and inspirational, songss . thank you all you bloggers for your inspirtional
    comments love you all….R…

  10. Thank you fellow bloggers for your replies. David your godly example in your continued commitment in sharing Christ, is inspiring to me. We are so bless where we live to have the freedoms that we have (God’s Word). Thank you as well to the link to George Beverly Shea’s memorial service. Happy Birthday Ger! God Bless!!!

  11. Thank you David for allowing us to share in George Beverly Shea’s Celebration Service.As a Teenage Salvation Army Bandsman in Toronto, ON. I remember
    playing in a large band at The Maple Leaf Gardens in the early 1940’s when
    Billy Graham spoke to thousands of young people at a giant Rally Shortly
    after the Lord directed the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association to commence
    and Praise the Lord He used him and George Beverly Shea to win many souls for Jesus Christ. God Bless you too in your Daily blog of Scripture. Major Glen McEwan…Regina Sask.

  12. love your blog. i have learned so much and i have so much more to learn thank you and i thank GOD for directing me to your blog. happy birthday ger, have a wonderful day!

  13. I love it when I think it was Cliff Barrows who said that George Bev Shea went from the land of the dying to the land of the living. We will all be so Alive in Heaven! Praise God!!!

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