“And the LORD said unto Moses, Is the LORD’s hand waxed short? thou shalt see now whether My word shall come to pass unto thee or not.” Numbers 11:23 KJV. When God told Moses that He would send them meat in the wilderness, enough to eat for a month, Moses struggled momentarily with doubt. To him, this was such an incredible thing that his mind could not conceive how it could happen. He wondered, “How could there be enough meat to feed over 2 million people for a month?” But as always, when men doubt God’s promises, Moses was looking at things only on a human level. So God asked him this question that we all should consider today. “Do you think the Lord’s power is too little to do this?” The real issue here is not in the greatness of God’s promise, but it’s in our faith in God’s divine power. Today, we have many great and precious promises in God’s Word. These promises pertain to every need we face in this life. But will we believe that God has the power to fulfill every promise? Will we be strong in faith, knowing that with God nothing is impossible? By God’s grace, let us be those who never doubt the mighty power of God and His great faithfulness. Let us be sure that our God is well able to meet every need. Because we know nothing is too hard for our God.
“(Jesus Christ) Whom having not seen, ye love; in Whom, though now ye see Him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:” 1 Peter 1:8 KJV. This is what real faith in God does. We haven’t seen Jesus with our natural eyes, but we believe the report about Who He is and what He did for us. And believing those truths, we love Him Who first loved us. We love Him because He laid His life down as the sacrifice for our sins. We love Him because He was willing to die so that we could have life in Him. We love Him because He sought for us and has forgiven our sins and cleansed us with His precious blood. We love Him for bringing us into a life changing, personal relationship with Him. And we love Him because He has placed His own love in our hearts. But having this faith which works by love, also causes our souls to rejoice! Having His love in our hearts fills our souls with joy unspeakable! And part of the reason for this joy is that in Christ we have experienced a love that will never fail. It is a love that satisfies the soul and enriches our life. Let us rejoice in the greatness of Jesus’ love and experience the unspeakable joy of walking daily with Him.
“Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.” James 4:10 KJV. Humility is one of the most misunderstood of Christian virtues. Most people regard humility as something that is very difficult and debasing. But the reality is, true Christlike humility is what lifts us up into the real blessings of being a child of God! Sin is what brings the soul of man down. And especially the sin of pride degrades the soul. The more that we think we can make it without God, the lower we sink into the pit of sin and despair. But thank God, when we allow God’s Spirit to show us our real need of Him and we humble ourselves to receive that revelation, then we are lifted up by the power of God into the blessedness of a life of total dependence upon Christ! This is what is missing in most religious lives. They acknowledge they need Christ for salvation but then imagine that they can live their life on their own after that. But true humility teaches us that we need Him every moment and every step of the way! Humility is what restores the joy to our weary souls when we finally realize that we can’t but God can.
“Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”James 4:8 KJV. What a tremendous thought this is, to know that the Creator of Heaven and earth, the God of all glory, is ready and willing to draw close to us, if we are willing to seek Him. And certainly every true child of God should want to draw nigh to God. We do this because we know that He is the greatest blessing we have. He is our hearts dearest treasure and we love Him above all others. The love He has placed in our hearts continually draws us to Him. But in this passage, we should realize that James is also writing to religious people who are ‘double minded’. That means their heart is not truly set on Jesus. They want religion to be a part of their life and feel like they are prepared for eternity, but they have no interest in a life changing, daily relationship with God. That is why the Spirit inspired James to say, “Cleanse you hands and purify your hearts!”. Because he knew they were not right with God. He knew they were not submitted to God’s authority over their lives. But for those who truly know Jesus Christ, let us rejoice that we have this awesome privilege, to draw close to God and have Him draw close to us.
“… there is no God else beside Me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside Me. Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.” Isaiah 45:21-22 KJV. In these verses God is reminding His people that they will never find help or salvation in the false gods of this world. Over and over in these chapters He repeats “There is no other God except Me”. He is the only true God. He is man’s only hope of salvation. Today we imagine that we have advanced beyond the days when people bowed down to heathen idols looking for help. And yet, the spirit of idolatry is more prevalent in this world than when they bowed at the altars of Baal. But now, it is much more deceitful. Week after week, people who profess to be Christian bow at the altars of this world. They look to family, money, sports, fleshly lusts, entertainment, worldly success and many other things. And they seek these things first, hoping they will bring contentment to their lives. And because they place these things ahead of Christ, those things become their god. That is the essence of idolatry. But let us be sure, our only hope is in the one true God! Let us look only and always to Him Who is our God and Saviour.
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7 KJV. What a wonderful promise this is, to know that satan has no power against us when we are living in submission to God and resisting his attacks. But this promise does not begin with our resistance. Rather, it begins with our complete submission to God’s authority over our lives. Far too many people believe all they have to do is try to resist the devil, or rebuke him ‘in Jesus name’ and he will flee from them. But that is not the promise God gives. The promise is only for those who are submitted to God. When the devil sees that we are living in rebellion against God, he knows that we have no power in ourselves to resist his attacks. That is the main reason people give in to temptation and fail. They are believing a lie and trying to resist in their own strength. But when we submit to God, we are brought under the canopy of God’s divine protection! A humble and submissive soul can always resist the devil because the power of God is protecting us. It is for the submitted life that God’s promises become real. When we are submitted to God, we can be sure, ‘that no weapon formed against us will prosper’, because the Mighty God is our Shield and Defender. Let us live in submission to God and then we can stand on His promises.
“…God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God…” James 4:6-7 KJV. Here is revealed the great failure of most religious people. They simply refuse to humble themselves and submit to God. They refuse to bow to His authority over their lives. They want a Saviour and a suave on their conscience, but they openly reject Christ as Lord of their lives. This attitude has led to tragic errors in religious teaching. Today, people are told that you can have salvation without submitting to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. They believe that Jesus will be their Saviour even while they refuse to submit to His clear commands. But make no mistake, this is a lie from the devil himself. It is destroying countless souls. Let us be very clear in understanding and presenting the Gospel message, that there is no salvation without submission to God’s revealed will. It is rebellion in people’s hearts that causes them to refuse to submit themselves to God. And the Bible says that rebellion is as witchcraft (1 Samuel 15:23). But to the humble soul, who bows their heart to Jesus Christ as their Lord and Master, all the grace we need will be given and every need supplied. Do not rest on a false belief that leaves sinful rebellion in your life. Your eternal soul depends on submitting yourself to God.
“God is our Refuge and Strength, A very present Help in trouble…The LORD of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our Refuge.” Psalm 46:1 & 11 KJV. Almost 500 years ago Martin Luther read this psalm and was inspired to write the song, ‘A Mighty Fortress is our God’. At that time his life was under threat and filled with many uncertainties. But this he was certain of, that the mighty God was his refuge and strength! As you read this brief psalm, take time to think about how desperately we need it today. We live in a world filled with many uncertainties. The threat of world war hangs over us. Economic fear grows every day. We wonder about what the future holds for our families. But thank God, in the midst of it all, we do not have to fear because the Everlasting God is in our midst! One verse of that song says, “And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us, we will not fear, for God has willed, His truth to triumph through us”. Let us be those faithful souls in whose lives the truth of God triumphs! Let us rise above the fear and be sure, that our God rules over all and He will take care of us. He is our very present Help in trouble.
“Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: Yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God.” Psalm 43:4 KJV. As the psalmist prays for God to lead him, he lets us see into his heart in regards to his attitude towards God. He says that God is his ‘exceeding joy’. This was what made his relationship with God so real and so wonderful. To him, the greatest joy of life was to know God and be able to experience God in a personal way. The good news is, that God is still the same! He still desires to be the exceeding joy of our lives just as then. And the more that we open our hearts to Him, the more personal time we spend with Him, the more we will experience the reality of this great joy in God. Most of religion today has settled for a form of religion that pacifies their conscience but leaves them still running after the world, where their real joy is. But may we, as true children of God, find in Jesus Christ our heart’s dearest treasure! And may we show to others that nothing in this world compares to the exceeding joy we find in our God. That is an important part of the testimony our lives can offer to souls bound by sin and false religion.
“Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God; For I shall yet praise Him, Who is the health of my countenance, and my God.”Psalm 42:11 KJV. There are times in every Christian life when we battle discouragement like the psalmist describes here. Our emotions betray us and we feel ‘cast down’ in our spirit. But in these times it is good to ask ourselves this question, “Why am I cast down or feeling discouraged?” A couple verses earlier, the writer asked two questions which helps us to identify the source of discouragement. “I will say unto God my rock, why hast Thou forgotten me? Why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?” Many times the enemy of our soul will try to use lies to bring oppression on our minds. He will tell us that God has forgotten us or won’t forgive us. And of course, to dwell on those lies will disturb our peace and lead us into discouragement. In these times it is very important for us to lift our eyes unto Jesus and focus on the truths He has made clear to us. Take time to meditate on the truths of God’s love, His goodness and His amazing grace to us. Thank God, the truth will set us free! The truth will drive away the oppression.