Tag

bible

Prayer and giving to the poor! Bible Study Acts 10 Part 1

By | Bible Study | No Comments

Bible study on Acts 10

Part 1 Read Acts 10 – Verses 1-8

The first thing to say is that God speaks in visions, dreams and even through angels! Scripture shows us that He can speak so clearly like this. God is the same yesterday today and forever and so we can and must expect God to keep speaking like this in these days!

Cornelius was a upright respected man. He was a God fearing man and a man that prayed to God continually. He gave to the poor and was well spoken off!

So when ever I read of angelic visitations like this I ask myself what was the reason for it. How is that Cornelius was so blessed to Recieve this. I’m not saying there is a formula to see angels I’m just interested in the context at which they visited.

Cornelius is for us a good role model in how we must be pressing in to God and walking righteously in our lives.

“Noun 1.alms-giving – making voluntary contributions to aid the poor”

a devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God……..And they said, “Cornelius, a centurion, an upright and God-fearing man, who is well spoken of by the whole Jewish nation, was directed by a holy angel to send for you to come to his house and to hear what you have to say.” (Acts 10:2, 22 ESV)

So Cornelius encounters and Angel of The Lord. It’s so overwhelming he thinks is The Lord himself. It must have been terrifically terrifying as he tells us. Simply amazing.

1) The very first thing The angel does is affirms him and his dedication and commitment to prayer and giving to the poor. This indicates to me that we must be doing this first and foremost part of our culture and way of living before The Lord. God was pleased with these prayers and offerings and they had ascended to heaven as a memorial before God. This shows us that God hears our prayers and sees our generosity to the poor. The awesome thing here is that its memorial before the Lord he doesn’t forget It. Verse 4. So it’s clear that prayer and giving is a key to part of Gods supernatural workings.

2) The angel tells him to send for Peter and gives him explicit detail as to where he is. So God is precise when he speaks. It was the names and the location which would have been more then enough to find them! He really is exact and precise.

3) The important part now is that Cornelius obeys and actions this immediately. He doesn’t hang around. How often does God speak to us and we procrastinate and not action and do what he has told us?

So in this small Chunk of Scripture there is so much we can take from it.

How can we be upright men and women of God in this day and age much like Cornelius?

Who is with me in committing daily to prayer and providing for the poor?

20130402-110239.jpg

A bible study on Acts 6:1-7 Apostolic Practical Ministry

By | Bible Study | No Comments

Please read the Scripture.

There was obviously a community issue here.

Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution. (Acts 6:1 ESV)

Widows where being forgotten and the disciples knew they needed to help. It was the custom at the time to help serve and distribute food to people in need of which widows where one of those. Scripture also talks about orphans and the need to help them practically. James 1:27.

So the apostles who where called by God to preach the Gospel and Word said this.

And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables. (Acts 6:2 ESV)

One might think that this was rather elitist and selfish of them. On the contrary. They recognised that God had called them to the preaching of the word and identified that it would not be right for them to neglect this calling.

So they equipped, blessed and released others to do it.

Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. (Acts 6:3 ESV)

The qualities the men needed are interesting to note and to try and live by in any service and word we do for The Lord.

• Good Repute / attested character. So obviously had experience in life and had been seen to be Godly men.
• Full of the Holy Spirit. I believe this means spirit filled and walking in Gifting’s in the Holy Spirit.
• Wisdom of high importance. More precious than Gold even.

After they had chosen the 7 the apostles prayed for them and interestingly laid hands on them which I think is important to do when commissioning people for a specific service to The Lord.

This allowed and freed up the apostles to do what they felt so strongly called to.

But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” (Acts 6:4 ESV)

If you feel called to apostolic ministry then I very much suggest you heed these words above as I really believe we have a biblical model here for ministry and service to The Lord. NOTE how prayer is Key. Prayer goes hand in hand with the preaching of Word of God.

“Apostolic may refer to; An Apostle meaning one sent on a mission” – Wikipedia

Then to check whether we are walking and working how God would want we need to check the fruit. I believe that as the Word of God increases in a city or town so will the amount of Disciples of Christ! And exponentially!

And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith. (Acts 6:7 ESV)

I do believe their are different callings in ministry and it is clear from this scripture that we must not neglect the practical side of ministry such as feeding the needy. Instead we should equip and release others to do this which in turn allows for the preaching of the Word to continue which will in turn release more disciples to be equipped to help the needy in our world.

How are walking in His calling?

Are we devoting ourselves to prayer and preaching of the word?

How do we equip more people to walk in what God has called them to?

Would there be or are they complaints from others how we are serving the poor and needy in our local area?

20130323-092832.jpg

20130323-092851.jpg

20130323-092925.jpg

Leaving and Retuning to Facebook – A Christ Followers Perspective!

By | Christianity, Personal | No Comments

So fellow readers I am going to in a few moments re – activate my account on facebook after being off it for just over one year now.

UPDATE – After being back on facebook for just under a week now I really can confirm that I do not miss it. I just really think that its too easy to spend unnecessary time on it scrolling through peoples accounts. It requires so much self discipline. So far its been an alright experience but its all to easy to let it take over and become about self. I have enjoyed posting scripture to it but I do wonder if people actually read it. But i know the Word will not return void and it will accomplish what it was mean to do. To point people to Christ and Glorify the Lord!

The reason I left facebook  was because of a relationship that came to an end. I really felt I and we needed a clean break and Facebook was one practical way to just have some space. At the time i was just not in a place to deal with all the pictures and posts that I was linked to and so felt to just close it down.

It has been one the best things I have done to allow healing to happen for me after the engagement ended!

God used it to just give me space and not feel tempted to look back on images that would be unhelpful! It was rather liberating really as I was not bound by its addictive pull. I also felt quite chuffed for going against the flow and conforming to the statistics.

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2

There are over 500 Million people on Facebook with 32827180 in the UK. Thats half the population! 5 in 10 1 in 2!

The exciting prospect for me is the chance to share the Gospel and Word of GOD to potentially half a billion people!

It allowed me to spend more time reading the Bible and Praying because I was less distracted! So if you feel distracted by it why not go off Facebook for a bit and spend that time reading the bible and praying and just watch how your personal walk with Jesus grows from strength to strength! Go for it!

Do it with a purpose and the purpose to get closer to the King of Kings!

I have been so blessed by using twitter to share the Word of God with people who follow me! Twitter in my opinion is much better because it is less intrusive and personal!

Now when I did it back in the first week of January It was fairly easy to find out how  after doing a few google searches!

It is time now for me to go back on it and again I am excited about one thing and one thing alone! This to share the GOOD NEWS OF JESUS CHRIST through the LIVING WORD OF GOD!

I am going to go for it and not pull any punches with sharing my faith! I know that it will not be easy as there will be some opposition and even temptation to focus on self. So I must be strong and the only way i am going to be able to glorify the Lord in what post is going to be through the power of the HOLY SPIRIT

Zechariah 4:6 Then he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts.

Facebook is a great tool to share the Gospel and tell people about how Jesus has transformed your life. My challenge to you who read this is are you living for Christ wholeheartedly when you use facebook!

My prayer is this

Lord help me to glorify God by posting His Word and encouraging others to get closer to Christ! Oh lord may it not be for my gain but for Your Glory! May others be blessed by the posts and scriptures I put on! May I be lead by the #HolySpiritto post content that would glorify you Lord! Lord if it becomes about me or not pleasing in your sight may I have no peace! In the name of Jesus. Amen!

A revelation of salvation through Jesus in the Trinity.

By | Bible Study, Jesus | No Comments

How do we really know Jesus?

So I was reading Matthew 16 and verse 15.

Who do you say I am asks Jesus to Simon Peter.

Peter answers “you are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

Wow He gets it’s. This is a momentous occasion. The disciples now truly know they have the messiah with them. This is a big deal because they where so expectant and waiting for a messiah to deliver them out of their troubles.

This is the important bit bellow in verse 17

Jesus says. Blessed are you… for this was not revealed to you by man, but my my father in heaven.

So stop and meditate/ponder on the above. Have you realised who Jesus is because of man or because you know deep within the core of your being the Jesus is the messiah of the world. Maybe think of the hardest thing you are facing at the moment and ask yourself the question “do I really believe Jesus can deliver me from this and save me”

True salvation happens when people realise who Jesus is not because of what man say or convince them to believe but by the Father in heaven.

How does the father in heaven speak to us? Through the work of the Holy Spirit!

That is the mirracle and splendour of the trinity.

It’s verry interesting though how in John 14:6 Jesus says “I am the way the and the truth and the Life. No one comes to the father except through me.

Its a beautiful trinity.

You have to know Jesus to know the father. John 14:6

But only the Father can reveal this to you. Not man- Matthew 16:15

Then finally the holy spirit will be with us. Jesus calls him out counsellor. He is what is with you right now as you read this. He is with me now reminding me of this as I write these words.

John 14:25-26 All this I have spoken while still with you. BUT the COUNSELLOR, the holy spirit whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you ALL things and REMIND you of everything I have said to you.

These words above come from Jesus to comfort his disciples. They knew he was the messiah but still needed support as he was leaving them soon. The support that would come was the Holy spirit. This support is available for you today. If you need a reminder of Jesus today ask him for it and he will freely give it.

Study, meditate, chew on these words. Read the Matthew 15 scripture and the John 14 verses and ask the holy spirit to speak to you through them.

So today I pray you would come to know who Jesus really is and may the Father reveal this to you not Man. May the holy spirit lead you into the true knowledge of the messiah. May he remind you of how amazing Jesus is and how amazingly good God is. May you come to know the amazing beauty of the trinity also.

May His peace be left with you and may you receive his peace right now.

Massive blessings with you right now – Lord a fresh realisation and revelation for whoever reads this now.

20120704-093936.jpg

Overflow of Love – Bible study on 1 Thessalonians and Paul

By | Bible Study | No Comments

Over the last few days I have been reading 1 Thessalonians and have been amazed by the teaching and Love of Paul to the Church in Thessalonica.

Let me paint the picture a little. Paul was probably writing from Corinth, which is in Greece. This was not his native or home turf but it was where God had called him to. Praise God he was obedient to his call to preach the gospel to the Gentiles.

Galations 2 7 On the contrary, they recognized that I had been entrusted with the task of preaching the gospel to the uncircumcised,[a] just as Peter had been to the circumcised.[b]

 

He was writing to the Church in Thessalonica, which is some 360 Miles Aw

ay from him at the time. Can you imagine walking this by foot… http://bit.ly/LvtzAG

It was one of the first Letters written to the Church around 50 or 51 AD. So it was a young church only really 20 years after Jesus departed to heaven.

Paul was under persecution and threat from all sorts of people. He was being thrown into prison and treated in such an awful way Read Acts 16 & 17. Yet he did not give up.

Acts 16

37 But Paul said to the officers: “They beat us publicly without a trial, even though we are Roman citizens, and threw us into prison. And now do they want to get rid of us quietly? No! Let them come themselves and escort us out.”

Paul caused such uproar wherever he went so much so that people rioted. It is amazing how much preaching the Gospel will shake things up. I think it is important to realise this.

Acts 17

But other Jews were jealous; so they rounded up some bad characters from the marketplace, formed a mob and started a riot in the city

So there you have it a brief picture painted of what life was like for Paul at the time of writing to the Church in Thessalonica.

I want to take a look at how much love Paul had for these people. Even though he was going through such hell and persecution he still had the love and desire for the people who he once ministered to. He had one goal and that was for people to have a Hope in the Lord Jesus Christ. Right at the beginning in Chapter 1 he says something profound.

1 Thessalonians

For we know, brothers and sisters[b] loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake.

The spoken message and gospel of Christ carries such power through the Holy Spirit. Words are not enough it has to be anointed by his spirit. I believe if we simply proclaim the Gospel the Holy Spirit will work and convict peoples souls.

 

In Chapter 2 I was really touched by Paul’s love for the people he preached to. It says he felt “torn” away from them in person but NOT in spirit. He had and “intense longing” to see them. I get the impression that Paul could not stop thinking of them. Are we thinking of people in our Lives and longing to see them know Christ more?

Capter 3

10 Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.

Are we praying for people and friends around us to grow deeper in the knowledge of Christ? It is so important we pray for our dear friends and family and people who we interact with. I challenge you to pray day and night for someone or a group of people.. pray that God would supply what is lacking in their faith.

Capter 3

12 May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.

I pray that we would learn how to love people and others in such a way that it goes beyond our own selfish inward looking nature. I pray that our love for Christ and each other would overflow in our communities and friends. Lord would only you make this happen and help us be even bolder than the great examples we read of in the Bible such as Paul.

 

Please let me know your thoughts?

How can we be more passionate for people to know Christ through Love?

Does anyone have any stories of testimonies of people who have changed their lives just simply though loving them unconditionally?

What is stopping us proclaim the Gospel of Christ fearlessly as Paul did?

Does any one have any stories of how the people are fearless proclaiming the Gospel both big and small?

I will write a post about Gods Call to purity next as this is on my heart and comes up in 1 Thessalonians 4.

Blessings in the Name of Jesus.

 

CREDIT http://godismydelight.blogspot.co.uk/2009/06/my-cup-overflows.html

Why Scripture in the Bible is Amazing

By | Bible Study, Jesus | No Comments

In reading the bible over the last few days i was struck by something amazing. It was a true revelation and so real that i have not been able to move off these verse for the past few days.

Prophecy of Scripture

12 So I will always remind you of these things, even though you know them and are firmly established in the truth you now have. 13 I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live in the tent of this body, 14 because I know that I will soon put it aside, as our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. 15 And I will make every effort to see that after my departure you will always be able to remember these things.

16 For we did not follow cleverly devised stories when we told you about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ in power, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 He received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”[b]18 We ourselves heard this voice that came from heaven when we were with him on the sacred mountain.

19 We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. 20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. 21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.

So here it is.

KEY POINTS

  • The man ( Probably PETER) who was an EYE WITNESS Wrote this V16  but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty
  • He ( Peter) was soon to die. He knew he was about die V 13 and 14
  • These where essentially his departing words. A man who didn’t have long left on the earth chose to write this Book and these words. This for me indicates how important it must have been for him to say these things.
  • We need to seriously listen to the advice and words given in this book especially for the Church today. If the church (The fellowship of the believers) was beginning to stray 2000 years ago then we need to also asses how much we have strayed. Peter wanted us to remember these things so it would do us well to remember these scriptures.
  • V16 these are NOT cleverly devise stories. They are inspired by people who saw the glory of the LORD JESUS Christ.
  • Why should we trust in JESUS? – Because GOD the maker of all things said This “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased” Jesus was Christs son and God sent him.
  • The words in the bible are completely reliable! V19 WE NEED TO PAY ATTENTION TO IT. Peter says we will do well if we do. Like a light shining in a dark Place.
  • Here is the punch line V20-21. The scriptures that we read did not come about by mans own infallible interpretation of life. These scriptures, that are prophetic never, are not born out of HUMAN WILL.
  • The HOLY SPIRIT is the one who has inpsired the words in the bible.

So I know that the Holy Spirit has revealed this to me and it is a great comfort to know that the scriptures we read are in the bible are real and relevant. I am going to keep reminding myself of them and keep focusing on them and keep my memory refreshed on them. I would urge you to do this also. I pray that you may to see the word of God come alive to you and out of that you may see that Jesus Christ is Lord.

Remember the scripures point us to Jesus for a reason. He is pure and blameles and is the best role model, leader and and friend for us to know and have.

Love in Christ.

Tim

Image from http://typesofthings.com/images/supernova.JPG