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Psalms 142:1-3 Troubles

Posted by adventbiblestudy on April 2, 2014


Psalms 142:1-3 NLTse I cry out to the LORD; I plead for the LORD’s mercy. (2) I pour out my complaints before him and tell him all my troubles. (3) When I am overwhelmed, you alone know the way I should turn. Wherever I go, my enemies have set traps for me.

 

This is a theme repeated throughout Psalms and other books containing prophecies about Jesus. It doesn’t take much to see troubles all around this world. We see it on the news, at work, in the neighborhoods, and among family and friends. While praying about this study, I began to wonder about all the troubles we’ve seen in this world over the past year and what’s been done to solve them. Whatever happened with the protests in Egypt, Syria, and other countries in the Middles East? I see God opening doors for His Gospel to reach millions. Is anyone listening or paying attention? Now we hear about protests in Ukraine which I think have more to do with oil prices than freedom. Ukraine is the oil pipeline for Russia. As long as the protests drag on, US oil companies find increased profits by exporting US oil to countries relying on Russian oil, and raise prices in the US and throughout the world because of the disruption in oil supplies. In the long run where is the concern for families effected by higher energy prices and fear of military intervention in Ukraine?

 

Last year the Philippines saw the worst storm in recorded history. The world was concerned for a time, but seems to have put relief in the past while tens of thousands still remain homeless and without food and water. Today we have mud slides and earth quakes to worry about in the US, not to mention a winter with record cold lingering on through March into April.

 

We’ve seen a passenger airliner disappear off the face of the earth. This seems rather odd considering governments spend billions of dollars a year to track citizens to within two steps using cell phone technology costing less than $20 and existing satellites. It seems multimillion dollar aircraft is using technology created in the late 1960’s.

 

With all the technology used today we are seeing an increase in train and boat accidents, oil spills, and other man made disasters. God’s given us the ability and Jesus gave us lessons on how to look back to compare past events to understand what we did wrong and open or hearts and minds to solutions brought about by prayer. Does anyone in government pray today? Does anyone pray before voting? Some may pray, I should ask if anyone is waiting and listening for the right answers? It always seems man’s goal is to ignore and defy God by trying to come up with better solutions himself. The Bible is full of people coming up with better solutions for God’s plan of salvation and lessons showing how God was still able to work with the mistakes people made and turn them into a blessing. The Bible also shows us the pain, heartaches, trials, and troubles people in the Bible faced when they didn’t have time to pray but decided to help God along by doing things their way.

 

One of the strangest events I’ve heard about in the past year is investing billions of dollars to come up with a plan to destroy or redirect meteors just in case one is on a collision course with the earth. This is a prime example of a lack of trust and faith in God and the ultimate example of pride and self reliance. Did they forget who hung all the planets and stars and how got the worlds spinning? So why spend all that money? Is it just in case God made a mistake or forgot something?

 

I for one am glad I was able to find God’s rules of study in His Word and God placed people in my life to guide me to and verify those rules. Not only does it teach me how to properly interpret His Word and open new and deeper understanding to His written Word and a far greater view to God’s personality resulting in a closer personal relationship, it also opened my mind to review the events of my life and see how experiences reflect the condition of the world. This prophecy tells us about being overwhelmed with troubles and traps the world has set for us. Before we get too involved with personal experiences we have to study to see how God teaches the process of looking back and forward in His Word.

 

Because the theme of this prophecy repeats, we have to look at what we’ve studied, what we’ve learned, then pray for insight to see what we’ve missed. We’ve seen how Jesus faced troubles throughout His ministry on earth. We’ve seen how Jesus was challenged by religious leaders and betrayed by one of His disciples. We’ve also seen how Jesus’ disciples had a dim view and little interest in the prophecies He was fulfilling before their eyes. The next obvious step is to look further ahead to see the results, accomplishments, and ministries the disciples experienced once their eyes were opened.

 

There are two parallel chapters explaining how this prophecy was fulfilled. First we can look at how Jesus fulfilled the prophecy. Then we can look at how His disciples used the the information they learned.

 

John 12:27-32 NLTse “Now my soul is deeply troubled. Should I pray, ‘Fathersave me from this hour’? But this is the very reason I came! (28) Father, bring glory to your name.” Then a voice spoke from heaven, saying, “I have already brought glory to my name, and I will do so again.” (29) When the crowd heard the voice, some thought it was thunder, while others declared an angel had spoken to him. (30) Then Jesus told them, “The voice was for your benefit, not mine. (31) The time for judging this world has come, when Satan, the ruler of this world, will be cast out. (32) And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.”

 

Jesus dwelt with trouble on different levels. First He gave all the glory to God. This showed His faith knowing His Farther was in control of every situation no matter how bleak the situation appeared. Jesus also knew His mission. He knew what He needed to do, when and how because His prayer life placed Jesus in constant contact with His Father, a right each of us has. Jesus also knew the outcome of the trials and troubles He experienced. Jesus knew those troubles were only temporary. Jesus knew how He would defeat Satan and what his ultimate fate would be. Jesus taught this to His disciples. His disciples taught it to others, and as we’ll see, Jesus continues to provide this hope to all His followers.

 

2 Corinthians 4:8-13 NLTse (8) We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. (9) We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. (10) Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. (11) Yes, we live under constant danger of death because we serve Jesus, so that the life of Jesus will be evident in our dying bodies. (12) So we live in the face of death, but this has resulted in eternal life for you. (13) But we continue to preach because we have the same kind of faith the psalmist had when he said, “I believed in God, so I spoke.”

 

Paul’s life mirrored his faith and dedication to Jesus. After persecuting Jesus’ followers for a time, Paul turned from Jesus’ adversary to one of His greatest supporters as a disciple. One who never stopped learning from Jesus, supporting Him, and following His orders. Paul saw Jesus as High priest and King. There was no doubt in Paul’s mind Jesus is our Lord and Savior, the promised Messiah.

 

Paul was not a stranger to troubles. It seemed as if following Jesus was the beginning of Paul’s troubles. Some of us have the same experience. Paul didn’t try to hide this fact, he preached it. Like Jesus, Paul added hope by reminding us how this will all end. “So we live in the face of death, but this has resulted in eternal life for you.”

 

Paul added a personal view of troubles. Paul is a symbol pointing to all of Jesus’ followers in the future. Paul was not one of the original disciples, but he was personally called by Jesus to preach. It took more than the earthly education Paul received. Paul never used the status be worked so hard to gain. As a matter of fact Paul gave up his status in the synagogue. He also had to unlearn everything he was taught. It took three years for Paul to become fit to teach Jesus’ gospel. Paul also wrote the majority of the New Testament. His qualifications are found in the number of Old Testament texts he quoted which showed his understanding of the prophecies Jesus fulfilled. Paul is a symbol showing we can know Jesus without having seen Him preach – but it still takes a long personal relationship with Him before we’re qualified to teach.

 

After reading through the New Testament there’s no doubt Paul faced more than his share of trials. When we choose to follow Jesus, we all see trials. Satan uses all the weapons in this world he’s allowed to unleash on us. When we look back, we see lessons involved. At times those lessons show us the condition of the world. Not only around us, but in lands we’ve never visited. Satan’s plans are world wide and don’t seem to change much. Obsessions he creates work on people no matter what creed or nationality they come from.

 

I don’t think it’s a mistake for me to be in Real Estate. I used to enjoy the job. Helping people was second nature to me as well as honesty and teaching was another skill I used. I didn’t like the way prices quickly escalated before the time came when they plummeted. That changed the face of Real Estate. It used to be a trade with integrity. Real Estate quickly became an occupation of the haves and the have nots. Major banks worked with a few chosen Real Estate Brokers to market hundreds of thousands of foreclosed homes. Fortunes were made almost overnight. It seemed the only way to survive in Real Estate was to work with foreclosed properties. Banks put distance between themselves and buyers by hiring asset managers to deal with Real Estate Brokers. The distance they created and government support protected major banks from law suits. It became a buyer beware, buy as-is market.

 

The few Real Estate Brokers selling foreclosed properties became rich and influential. I’ve heard of legislation being introduced which claims the work they do is so important, those Brokers should be allowed to make their millions tax free. Another example showing how the rich get richer and how the government lays the majority of the burden on the poor. This plan has far deeper implications.

 

The high number of foreclosed properties opened the field to investors who swopped into neighborhoods buying up homes and turning them into rental properties. Some do a good job. We’re fed the occasional stories on the news showing the success of a few Real Estate investors. The real money lies in buying and renting homes to people who lost their homes in the foreclosure landslide. Often times those people are paying more money to rent homes than a mortgage and taxes. After all many investors are using borrowed money, paying taxes, and making a profit. Someone has to pay for expenses and tidy profit on top of all of it.

 

Many foreclosed properties suffered heavy damage, or were poorly maintained. Many foreclosed homes housed poor and elderly couples or singles on a limited retirement fund. Their houses were dated and in need of past due maintenance. Taxes finally drove many of them from their homes. Society forgot the sacrifices they made serving in World War II, the Korean War, or the war in Vietnam. The work and years of service they invested in companies resulted in reduced or eliminated retirement funds in the pursuit of increased profits and a high rating on the stock exchange. Some lost their retirement funds invested in company stocks in a matter of months as one company after another took advantage of new and ever changing reconstruction laws allowing companies to restructure in ways none of us are able to understand. Judges allowed companies to pick and choose which investors made money and which lost everything. It seems Satan was busy planning new ways to redistribute money that obviously separated people from God.

 

Many of those homes were taken by cities through tax foreclosures or banks foreclosed on unpaid mortgages. City governments forgot the service people provided to build the city not to mention years of taxes paid. Banks cared less if the original mortgage was paid back with 100% interest over the years. Mercy left this world along with common sense. Over the years laws were carefully written and rewritten to protect and benefit banks and city government. To think elected officials use our tax dollars paid to put us in such a vulnerable position. Investors bought up entire neighborhoods and turned once thriving neighborhoods into rental districts. Many investors cared little about tenants. Their repairs on properties provided sub par living conditions at top prices. Families with poor credit and little income moved into those homes. Children watched landlords take advantage of their parents and took the worst aspects of their predicament into the world they lived in. Taking advantage of people seemed like a natural thing to do, so they went out and robbed from their neighbors. Anyone with half a brain knows substandard living conditions, lack of fulfilling employment, and high rental districts breed crime. Government not only watched neighborhoods deteriorate, they financed it to a degree.

 

The Real Estate industry seems to be a type of barometer for the economy as well as the moral condition of the world. Over the past year I’ve seen more back stabbing, dealing under the table, power hungry people, and people creating new and nonfunctional rules to follow. All of this has been extremely frustrating. A couple of trends seem to bother me most. First is the control of foreclosed properties. I see the majority of foreclosed properties concentrated in particular voting districts as if foreclosure is a way of swaying votes. That may be a coincidence, a product of political alignment verses income, another sign of distribution of money by new laws enacted, or something far sinister.

 

We’re supposed to hear about rumors of wars before Jesus’ return. Are we only looking at the obvious, or are there signs on the horizon we not seeing clearly. Wars are fought for land and its resources. In war people are expendable and buildings can be rebuilt. Land holds its value. God promised Israel land and homes. It’s no wonder Satan is a fanatic at taking it away. It’s a tactic he uses to crush the spirit and cast doubt on God’s ability. The war we’re facing has been going on since that first sin when Adam and Eve were evicted from Eden.

 

Another aspect of Real Estate that really bothers me is the ability to spy on people. In this case it is potential customers, buyers and sellers. It’s no secret Real Estate Internet sites are designed to collect and sell information. In the industry it’s known as lead generation. Where I practice it is against state law to share commissions with non licensed personal. It’s a law made to protect the public and extends to all licensed professionals. People cannot recommend doctors, dentists, lawyers, or other licensed professionals for a fee. But Real Estate web sites think they have a way around the law. For a fee they list particular agents as neighborhood experts and sell those agents buyers and listing leads. Plain and simple. Those sites and agents who use them are breaking the law. Leads are actually auctioned off to the highest bidder. Some areas cost as much as $300 to $3000 a month. A few web sites cornered the market giving agents little choice but to sacrifice dignity and ethics which is only part of the price they have to pay for success. Not all successful agents put ethics aside, but it has become a trend in the industry.

 

Information sharing is evolving and the government is doing little to control it. The government leads to way on information gathering and therefore reluctant to enact laws to control it. I’ve been offered programs for free that would allow me to track anyone with an Email address. This program generates reports showing every site potential customers visit, when and for how long they view the web page. The local bank offering this free program also hints it will provide certain financial information in the reports. The most surprising aspect of this program is it can be viewed and downloaded on a phone. Anyone with common sense will see what a breach of security that could be. I doubt if anyone wants their lender much less a Real Estate agent viewing what I would consider confidential information. What happens when that phone is lost or stolen? Your Internet history could wind up on the open, or maybe the under ground market available to the highest bidder just like your contact information is sold today by Internet Sites.

 

When we look at our lives, they can never compare to Jesus’ life or reflect the role Jesus came to fulfill. All we can do is try to reflect the light, knowledge, and hope He gives us. We accomplish this task through a close relationship with Him and paying attention to lessons His Word teaches us as well as listing for answers to our prayers. We find out more about this process through the introductions in John 12 and 2 Corinthians 4 and compare them to the prophecy in Psalm 142.

 

John 12:1-10 NLTse Six days before the Passover celebration began, Jesus arrived in Bethany, the home of Lazarus–the man he had raised from the dead. (2) A dinner was prepared in Jesus‘ honor. Martha served, and Lazarus was among those who ate with him. (3) Then Mary took a twelve-ounce jar of expensive perfume made from essence of nard, and she anointed Jesus‘ feet with it, wiping his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance. (4) But Judas Iscariot, the disciple who would soon betray him, said, (5) “That perfume was worth a year’s wages. It should have been sold and the money given to the poor.” (6) Not that he cared for the poor–he was a thief, and since he was in charge of the disciples’ money, he often stole some for himself. (7) Jesus replied, “Leave her alone. She did this in preparation for my burial. (8) You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me.” (9) When all the people heard of Jesus‘ arrival, they flocked to see him and also to see Lazarus, the man Jesus had raised from the dead. (10) Then the leading priests decided to kill Lazarus, too.

 

We can tell we’re on the right track when we see Lazarus added to the equation. Jesus was not the only person the priests plotted against. This shows how Lazarus and all of Jesus’ followers were persecuted. Immediately after Jesus’ resurrection the priests sent out armed companies to arrest and jail Jesus’ followers. Saul was one of those commanders.

 

We also see a contrast teaching a deeper lesson. In this case the context of this study shows how Mary’s love for Jesus illustrates the passion required to survive the plans Satan and this world have for those who commit their lives to Jesus. No wonder Jesus said, “I have given them your word. And the world hates them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world.” (John 17:14 NLTse). All this points to the fact, “The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.” (John 15:19 NLTse). It’s amazing how one prophecy ties in the troubles Jesus faced and those we’ll have to face. Paul adds more details.

 

2 Corinthians 4:1-6 NLTse (1) Therefore, since God in his mercy has given us this new way, we never give up. (2) We reject all shameful deeds and underhanded methods. We don’t try to trick anyone or distort the word of God. We tell the truth before God, and all who are honest know this. (3) If the Good News we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hiddenonly from people who are perishing. (4) Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God. (5) You see, we don’t go around preaching about ourselves. We preach that Jesus Christ is Lord, and we ourselves are your servants for Jesus‘ sake. (6) For God, who said, “Let there be LIGHT in the darkness,” has made this LIGHT shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ.

 

How deep does the connection between business and the Good News go? These days, if your honest, it is almost impossible to compete in any line of business. It’s almost as if people expect you to cheat or lie in one fashion or another. I’ve seen a lot of people attracted to high pressure Real Estate Agents who push buyers into making an instant decision without doing what I consider necessary steps like determining market value by examining comparable properties. I see a similar attitude in religion. Many Christians are closed minded. They don’t want to listen to any ideas they haven’t discovered on their own. They spend some time in the Bible, but seem to never develop a close personal relationship with Jesus. They lack the forgiveness Jesus exhibited when He listened to people with different views and answered, often with a question that made them think. The KJV uses the phrase, “held their peace.” Some churches take advantage of the high pressure sales technique people often fall for. The question should be, are you joining a club to pay membership fees or are you looking for a church more like an employer ready, willing, and able to train you with new skills making you a far more valuable member of the team? One thing to keep in mind is the one and only chairman of the board is Jesus, who gives all the orders and directs each member on His team individually.

 

Paul explains this attitude in another way. “If the Good News we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hidden only from people who are perishing. Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe.” Paul’s words may seem simple and that’s the way the world seems to look at them. There is not a Christian church in the world who does not believe their way of preaching is all it takes to be saved. Some of them may be right, but are they all correct? Some preach the once saved always saved concept. Ask forgiveness once and it covers you for life. Another popular belief is, Jesus died to save the world, so the entire world is covered and saved if they like it or not. Does that include Satan and His angels? Some churches focus on little more than prophecies. Not the prophecies about Jesus. Those churches like to launder through scripture trying to impress the world with new predictions every week. Then there are churches who lure people in, preach their doctrine, then send members out to convert others to their doctrines. They tend to argue any and every point. The state of the dead, Trinity, baptism what day to worship, how to worship, how to dress, what to eat, and of course prophecy. Some churches believe once your baptized, your saved. So they baptize babies just in case they die young — their saved. So many beliefs, but who follows what Paul taught? “We preach that Jesus Christ is Lord, and we ourselves are your servants for Jesus‘ sake. For God, who said, “Let there be LIGHT in the darkness,” has made this LIGHT shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of Godthat is seen in the face of Jesus Christ.” Is that such a difficult task? It becomes an impossible task only if you don’t know Jesus. What is it to have Jesus in your heart, other than a cliché? A term that’s been repeated so many times it’s lost its meaning.

 

Some people don’t understand how Satan works. Satan knows all about Jesus. He knows more about Jesus than most people do. Satan’s angels know more about Jesus than most preachers do. Satan’s not afraid of people knowing about Jesus. As long as Satan can keep Jesus down to a historical figure, he considers his job complete. Arguing doctrines, guessing at prophecies and revelations to impress people, telling people what to do, say, wear and eat does little if anything to develop a relationship with Jesus.

 

To understand Paul’s book you have to understand how Paul wrote. More importantly you have to understand where Paul learned to write. Jesus often referred to scripture. Jesus answered many questions with scripture. Jesus did this for a reason. When people read scripture with an open heart, they open their minds to understanding. Paul used the same method to preach and write. Often times Paul only told 10-20% of the lesson, leaving 80-90% of it up to God’s Spirit to teach – through scripture. Paul quoted scripture in the fulfillment of the prophecy in Psalm 142. Let’s take a look at what Paul pointed to.

 

I will walk before the LORD in the land of the living. I believed, therefore have I spoken: I was greatly afflicted: I said in my haste, All men are liars. What shall I render unto the LORD for all his benefits toward me? I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD. I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his people. Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints. (Psalms 116:9-15 KJV).

 

When I read this, I wonder if Paul knew this was a prophecy about himself? Calling all men liars is an eye opener. David the prophet may be exaggerating facts based on worldly terms, but what about spiritual terms? Does anyone know the total truth about Jesus? All the prophecies about Jesus aren’t in this book, nor the series of books I’ve written, and intend to write. I know some of those prophecies are too deep to explain in simple terms. John wrote, Jesus also did many other things. If they were all written down, I suppose the whole world could not contain the books that would be written. (John 21:25 NLTse). The prophecy refers to our lack of knowledge. What would be the condition of this world if half its Christians could admit they don’t know everything? With an open mind it’s time to compare the summations of these three chapters we’re studying.

 

Psalms 142:4-7 NLTse I look for someone to come and help me, but no one gives me a passing thought! No one will help me; no one cares a bit what happens to me. (5) Then I prayto you, O LORD. I say, “You are my place of refuge. You are all I really want in life. (6) Hear my cry, for I am very low. Rescue me from my persecutors, for they are too strong for me. (7) Bring me out of prison so I can thank you. The godly will crowd around me, for you are good to me.”

 

How does this part of the prophecy effect you? Has Jesus been asking you for help? He once said, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few.” (Matthew 9:37 NLTse). Jesus needs workers and is able to train anyone who comes to Him. Jesus doesn’t wait around for people to come to Him, He reaches out to people. He reached out to Paul as an example. Jesus has the ability to reach everyone who is willing to be open to His calling no matter how far they’ve strayed. Not many people have run further from God than Paul. Oh, how generous and gracious our Lord was! He filled me with the faith and love that come from Christ Jesus. This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”–and I am the worst of them all. (1 Timothy 1:14-15 NLTse). “Bring me out of prison so I can thank you. The godly will crowd around me, for you are good to me.” David told us how he and Jesus put their trust in God and Paul showed us how to put our trust in Him. Jesus explained this process in the chapter we’re studying.

 

John 12:44-50 NLTse Jesus shouted to the crowds, “If you trust me, you are trusting not only me, but also God who sent me. (45) For when you see me, you are seeing the one who sent me. (46) I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark. (47) I will not judge those who hear me but don’t obey me, for I have come to save the world and not to judge it. (48) But all who reject me and my message will be judged on the day of judgment by the truth I have spoken. (49) I don’t speak on my own authority. The Father who sent me has commanded me what to say and how to say it. (50) And I know his commands lead to eternal life; so I say whatever theFather tells me to say.”

 

Jesus covered some very important information here. Jesus received His message from God. This included day to day messages Jesus shared with individuals. This is an important factor when serving Jesus. You have to be in constant contact with Jesus and God’s Spirit to know what message to give to which people. God’s message has never been a one size fits all variety.

 

When Jesus said, ” I will not judge those who hear me but don’t obey me,” Jesus showed how He will continue to reach them, even if they won’t listen. We look at this in two ways. When Jesus doesn’t give up, neither should we. It also shows how wrong it is to demand people accept the message you accepted thinking all messages and people are the same. Leading to salvation was never designed or meant to work that impersonal way. There is no doubt Jesus is taking responsibility for the messages delivered. So we have to ensure we share the message Jesus brings us from Heaven.

 

What does it mean to reject Jesus’ message? Most people think this is rejecting some message they found in the Bible or some founding father found years or generations ago. People think maybe the message we shouldn’t reject was made up by some committee formed years ago. That type of message has little to do with establishing a relationship with Jesus, nor does it teach anything about how to listen to God’s Spirit. Learning to God’s Spirit takes time, prayer, and patients. Often times the message means little or no sense to the messenger, but can make all the difference to the person it is delivered to. None of us know all the troubles people face, or their private prayers to God. But God sees all the details and knows exactly what words will reach each individual. Once we see the true meaning of Jesus’ message, we understand why Jesus said, “But all who reject me and my message will be judgedon the day of judgment by the truth I have spoken.” What will your record show when your name is called for judgment? Did you listen to Jesus when He directed you to people? Did you help people out of their troubles when Jesus tried to send you? It’s time to put away the one size fits all answer derived from doctrines, traditions, prophecies, and other messages created in board rooms and replace them with individual messages Jesus is looking for workers to deliver. Paul adds a few more details as well as reminding us of the hope and promises Jesus gave us through His sacrifice.

 

2 Corinthians 4:14-18 NLTse (14) We know that God, who raised the Lord Jesus, will also raise us with Jesus and present us to himself together with you. (15) All of this is for your benefit. And as God’s grace reaches more and more people, there will be great thanksgiving, and God will receive more and more glory. (16) That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. (17) For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! (18) So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.

 

Paul tells us about God’s grace reaching more and more people which results in more glory for God. That glory does not come from man’s preconceived ideas, or messages created by men. It comes from God using us to reach out to individuals under His direction. It doesn’t come from a printed pamphlet or rally designed to reach masses. Look back at David’s prayer. I cry out to the LORD; I plead for the LORD’s mercy. I pour out my complaints before him and tell him all my troubles. When I am overwhelmed, you alone know the way I should turn. Wherever I go, my enemies have set traps for me. Notice the “I’s” David used? David told us how he personally approached God and how God personally answered David’s prayers. Some people don’t know this. If we spent as much time and money showing how to personally approach God’s throne as churches spend advertising doctrines, traditions, and prophecy, think of what the world could be? Imagine if government leaders knew God’s throne was open to them and God’s Spirit is watching them and holding them accountable for their actions and the opportunity they have to share messages Jesus needs delivered. Great and small, rich or poor, we have have the same access to God’s throne. We all share the same responsibility. We all receive the same reward or face the same judgment. So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.

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