Tag: Patience

Patience for repentance!

Scripture reading for November 18th:  2nd Peter 3, Psalm 87-88, Proverbs 14

Key Scriptures:  2nd Peter 3:8-10  “But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.  The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.  But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.”  

As the Apostle Peter concludes his last letter before being martyred, he pointed the church to God’s long-suffering and mercy.  Although it seemed that the Lord was slow concerning His promise of returning, God was really being patient with all men, not wanting any to perish.  They should call on the Lord while His patience remained (repentance), because a day was coming when there would be His sudden return.  To the unrepentant, it would be like a thief and would bring great destruction on the heaven and earth and eternal loss for them.

Faith Confession:  Lord Jesus, thank You for Your mercy and great patience towards sinners, of which I have benefited.  Use me today to share the good news of Your patience and desire to save those who are perishing, headed for eternal death.

Proverbs 14:11-12 “The house of the wicked will be destroyed, but the tent of the upright will flourish.  There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.”  

 

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Our Patient Lord!

Scripture reading for November 16th:  Ezekiel 13-16, 2nd Peter 3

Key Scriptures:  2nd Peter 3:8-10  “But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.  The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.  But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.”

How thankful we who dwell on the earth should be for our Lord’s patience!  He has promised destruction of the wicked and a cleansing of the earth by fire but is patiently waiting for all that will to come to repentance.  He would rather bless than judge and destroy.  But His patience will ultimately give way to judgment when the day of the Lord comes.  Fire and retribution are assured for the wicked.

Ezekiel 16:43 “Because you have not remembered the days of your youth, but have enraged Me with all these things, therefore, behold, I have returned your deeds upon your head, declares the Lord God.  Have you not committed lewdness in addition to all your abominations?”

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your patience with me and with our lost world.  Help me to share the Good News of Your patience with the lost.  Amen.

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Inheriting the Kingdom!

Scripture reading for March 20th:  Joshua 12-14, Luke 13

Key Scriptures: Luke 13:18-19  “He said therefore, “What is the kingdom of God like?  And to what shall I compare it?  It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden, and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made their nests in it.”

Jesus illustrated the nature of God’s kingdom to His disciples.  He used the common mustard seed to illustrate how powerful something appearing so small in the natural really was.  When this small seed was placed in the garden, it grew and became a great tree that could provide shelter and nesting for the birds.  Caleb’s faith build his inheritance after 45 years of patience!

Joshua 14:10-12 “And now, behold, the Lord has kept me alive, just as He said, these forty-five years since the time that the Lord spoke this word to Moses, while Israel walked in the wilderness.  And now,  behold, I am this day eighty five years old.  I am still as strong today as I was in the day that Moses sent me, my strength is now what my strength was then. So now, give me that hill country of which the Lord spoke on that day. . .”

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for these examples of men of faith that believed and stood on Your Word.  May I be strong and courageous all my days.  Amen.

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Thankful for Grace (again)!

Scripture reading for February 9th:  Numbers 11-14

Key Scriptures:  Numbers 14:17-19  “Now may the Lord’s strength be displayed, just as you have declared:  ‘The Lord is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion.  Yet He does not leave the guilty unpunished; He punishes the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generations.’  In accordance with Your great love, forgive the sin of these people, just as You have pardoned them from the time they left Egypt until now.”

The Israelites were in rebellion against the Lord’s command to go in and take their promised land.  Moses prayed after God spoke of destroying them and making another people through Moses.  He prayed that the Lord’s ‘strength’ would be displayed!  This ‘strength’ was forgiveness of sin and rebellion and continued patience with His people!

Overflowing Thanksgiving:  Thank God for His Strength that makes sinners alive from death!  “But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions–it is by grace you have been saved!” (Ephesians 2:5)

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All Glory to King Jesus!

Scripture reading for September 23rd:  1st Timothy 1

Key Scriptures for over-comers:  1st Timothy 1:15-19  “Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance:  Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners–of whom I am the worst.  But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display His unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on Him and receive eternal life.  Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever.  Amen.”  

Paul’s testimony formed the basis of his advice to the younger minister Timothy.  Paul knew he was the worst of sinners because he had persecuted and killed Christians.  Jesus Christ appeared to him and personally confronted him with his need to repent.  God showed His patience and great mercy for Paul as an example to all who would believe on Jesus Christ.   In sharing these truths of Christ’s great mercy and patience, Paul’s heart and pen flows with worship to His Lord and King!

Observations for over-comers:   Our salvation and new creation life is based on Christ’s patience and mercy and intervention on our behalf.  Overcomers base their lives on this truth and live a life of worship!  “I will sing of the Lord’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations.  I will declare that your love stands firm forever, that you established your faithfulness in heaven itself.”  (Psalm 89:1-2)

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The Judge is at the door!

Scripture reading for November 21st: James 5:1-20

Most Christians know about the promise of Jesus coming again.  This coming has been foretold for about two thousand years and it still hasn’t taken place.  James wrote to remind the early church and us of our need for patience and active faith in the face of suffering and persecution.

“Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord’s coming.  See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains.  You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.  Don’t grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged.  The Judge is standing at the door!” (James 5:7-9)

Being a farmer in my early years taught me a lot about patience.  I could plant the seed, but I couldn’t hurry the harvest.  I could keep the weeds out of the crop, but God had to bring the rains in their proper time.  I had to wait with faith that God would provide.  He always took care of us, even though it was sometimes at the last minute!

When we wait, it is easy to become impatient and get into strife and grumbling.  The Israelites did this as they waited in the desert to go into the promised land.  Their grumbling brought God’s judgment.  (1st Corinthians 10:1-10)  James warns us not to grumble.  The One who will judge us is right at the door–ready to come at any instant!  Knowing this and believing this should help keep us on the right course to meet the Lord.

James cites the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord as another example of patience.  “As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered.  You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about.  The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” (James 5:11)  Job lost everything he had as well as his health but he held onto his faith.  He was eventually restored double by the Lord!  (Job 42:10)  Perseverance and faith have a great reward in the end.  So it shall be for each person who trusts God and stays faithful through the trials and tests of life.  The righteous Judge will restore and reward the faithful but the unbeliever will suffer great loss!

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Be patient–Jesus is coming!

Scripture reading for December 16th: James 1-5

James was the half-brother of Jesus Christ.  He was known to be the pastor of the church in Jerusalem and full of practical wisdom.  One of his nicknames was “camel knees” because of time spent in prayer.

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.  Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”  (James 1:2-4)  Not many people like trials.  But  James says we should embrace trials with joy, because we know they develop perseverance.  We need perseverance to grow and mature.

“Be patient, then brothers, until the Lord’s coming.  See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he waits for the autumn and spring rains.  You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.  Don’t grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged.  The judge is standing at the door.” (James 5:7-9)  We need mature faith and patience because Jesus is coming.  Farmers regularly wait upon God for the needed rains to grow and mature their crops.    Grumbling is a sign of impatience.  God will judge those who are impatient and fail to wait.

“Brothers, as an example  of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.  As you know we consider blessed those who have persevered.  You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about.  The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” (James 5:10-11)  James is always addressing the “brothers” in an encouraging way, appealing to their past knowledge and understanding as Jewish believers.  They were familiar with the prophets and their suffering–especially Job, the oldest book of the Bible.   Job suffered patiently and God restored him completely at the end of his trial.

“Is anyone in trouble? He should pray.” (James 5:13a)  James ends his letter with an encouragement to pray when in trials or trouble.  Prayer helps us to persevere and develops patience.  Elijah of old prayed and waited on God.  God answered him.  He will answer us today as well!  We must persevere and watch and pray!  Jesus is coming!  The rains mean harvest!  The trials mean more maturity and joy!

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Sunday Rest and Reflection–Patience

As I read this book of Joshua and think about what he faced in his lifetime, I am reminded of my need for patience.  Patience takes strength and courage.  When you know what the Lord has said and nobody around you is listening or walking in faith it is hard to have patience.  When all around you grumble and complain and see only the problems, it’s hard to be positive and not loose your temper.

Joshua had to wait 40 years to enter his inheritance.  He saw it as one of the spies and understood from God’s Word that He it belonged to them.  He knew that God would help them with the walled cities and the giants.  He had a good attitude and a good confession.  He tore his clothes and pleaded with the people when they rebelled at Kadesh. (Numbers 14:5-9) He faithfully served Moses for the 40 years of wandering.  He was a good second man to Moses.   You never see him trying to usurp authority or grab anything for himself.  He walked with those who were destined to die in the wilderness and kept his focus.  He was so faithful that he was chosen by God to lead Israel after Moses’s departure.  The Bible tells us that the first requirement of a steward is that they be found faithful!  (1st Corinthians 4:2)  Joshua was faithful through the hard times and patient to wait until God’s time came for him to enter and possess his inheritance.

As you take time to rest and pray today, thank God for his faithfulness in sending His son Jesus Christ!  He is our Joshua.  He keeps a good attitude even when we whine and complain.  He walks with us faithfully.  He kept God’s Word perfectly and is the only one who can take us into the “promised land’!  He took the lowest place of a servant and God exhalted Him to the hightest place of authority.  His patience with us is amazing!  What courage and strength it took for Him to save us!  Are you letting patience have it’s perfect work in your life today?  Have a great day of rest and refreshing!  Remember to gather with others of faith and worship the Lord!  God bless you!  Pastor John

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