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February 2019

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I like this comment about Hezekiah:
“He believes showing off his wealth will prove that he has worldly power and that the Babylonians will respect him and Judah.”

It is interesting that we have to always guard our steps. Hezekiah rested on God’s blessings (instead of God) and foolishly boasted AFTER God healed him. (SEE 2 CHRONICLES 20:1 – 19)

There are ONLY TWO (2) purposes that I see from God’s Word for blessing and prosperity. Neither of them include “keeping up with the Jonses” or trying to impress our neighbors with so-called “status”. The two (2) reasons are:

a. God loves us, and He wants to genuinely bless us
b. God blesses us so we can bless others, so we can establish His covenant—the Gospel of Righteousness in Jesus—in the world around us.

I like Deuteronomy 8:1 – 18. In these verses, God humbled and tested the people of Israel so they would know what was in their hearts. Then He told them that He would bless them and bring them into a land of abundance.

Then He strictly warned them to not get so comfortable with His blessings that they forgot the Loving Father and said that they, by themselves and by their hands, achieved this wealth and blessing.

However, even after all of these warnings, God still CLEARLY stated His will that He wants to bless His people (because He loves them) and because He wants people in the world to know and be established in His love in Jesus:

Deuteronomy 8 (Amplified)
2
And you shall [earnestly] remember all the way which the Lord your God led you these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and to prove you, to know what was in your [mind and] heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not.
3
And He humbled you and allowed you to hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know nor did your fathers know,
* that He might make you recognize and personally know that man does not live by bread only, but man
lives by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord.

16
[God] Who fed you in the wilderness with manna, which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and test you, to do you good in the end.
17
And beware lest you say in your [mind and] heart, My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.
18
But you shall [earnestly] remember the Lord your God, for it is He Who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.

**
WE MUST ALWAYS GUARD OUR HEARTS!
People can have hearts that are hard against God whether we are poor or wealthy in the riches of this world.

**
Money or lack of money does not make a mature spiritual person.
Humbly yielding to the Lord, receiving His Spirit, and being established in His Word and His righteousness in worship and obedience do make a mature spiritual person.

Matthew 4 (Amplified)
2
And He went without food for forty days and forty nights, and later He was hungry.
3
And the tempter came and said to Him, If You are God's Son, command these stones to be made [loaves of] bread.
4
But He replied, It has been written, Man shall not live and be upheld and sustained by bread alone, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.

WHAT AM I HUNGRY FOR? What do I spend my time thinking about and meditating on? What is in my heart will overflow into my words and actions.

I MUST DELIBERATELY PLACE GOD’S WORD into my heart, and I must deliberately choose to obey it. OF COURSE, this is not always easy. We like to live based on feelings and circumstances instead of passing through feelings and circumstances with God’s Word planted in us.

John 15 (Amplified)
7
If you live in Me [abide vitally united to Me] and My words remain in you and continue to live in your hearts, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you.

EPHESIANS 1

I like this comment:
“God had planned for this from all eternity and has given to the believer everything that he needs for his Christian life, but it is for him to avail himself of the resources at his command.”

Do I—do we—meditate on who Jesus is in us… and on who I—who we—are in Jesus?

EPHESIANS 1 (Amplified)

19
And [so that you can know and understand] what is the immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power in and for us who believe, as demonstrated in the working of His mighty strength,
20
Which He exerted in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His [own] right hand in the heavenly [places],
21
Far above all rule and authority and power and dominion and every name that is named [above every title that can be conferred], not only in this age and in this world, but also in the age and the world which are to come.
22
And He has put all things under His feet and has appointed Him the universal and supreme Head of the church [a headship exercised throughout the church],
23
Which is His body, the fullness of Him Who fills all in all [for in that body lives the full measure of Him Who makes everything complete, and Who fills everything everywhere with Himself].

You and I are “the fullness of Him Who fills all in all. For IN US lives the FULL MEASURE OF HIM Who makes everything complete.”

Do we know and believe this?

How did we get in this position? It is certainly not because we deserved it. It is NOT about our not being worthy. IT IS ABOUT Jesus IN US:
* And He has put all things under His – JESUS’—feet
* He has has appointed Him—JESUS—to be the universal and supreme Head of the church
* WE HAVE a headship WHICH IS TO BE exercised throughout the church.

WOW!

Vance

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