This is Tuesday, and I am at Golden State Baptist College and North Valley Baptist Church. I am enjoying my stay, but also longing for home. It seems I have the opportunity of traveling more each year as a church here and there will ask me to come and speak for them. I appreciate open doors of ministry, but I love the open door God has given to me and my people in Oregon. I'm here to serve however, and it is up to the LORD to open and shut the doors of ministry; my job is simply to respond to His leading.
I'm reading in Luke this morning, and here are some thoughts:
1) THE POWER OF THE WORD- in Luke chapter four, we see that Jesus is about to be tempted in the wilderness by the Devil. In verse one, it says: "And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness," Here we see that Jesus was "full of the Holy Ghost" and "led by the Spirit". Now we pray often to be full of the Holy Ghost, and to be led by the Holy Spirit. (Same person) And yet..... when confronted with temptation by the Devil, Jesus answered him by the Word of God. In verse four it says: "And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God." Notice that even though Jesus is "Spirit filled, and Spirit led", that the Word of God is the tool He uses to fight temptation. Again in verse eight it says: "for it is written" and in verse 10: "For it is written.." Now we pray often to be Spirit filled and led as I mentioned before, but how often to we pray to be filled with God's Word? You see that can be a self answering prayer.... we can spend more time in God's Word, but no... we want God to fill us without our having to work at it. We want to have the "power" without the regular schedule of long hours in God's Word. We cannot be Spirit filled without being Word of God filled! The Bible still tells us that the Word of God is the sword of the Spirit. Jesus was swinging the sword of God's Word as He battled the temptations of the Devil. Are we swinging a pocket knife because we spend so little time in God's powerful Word!! We know it is the power of God unto Salvation, but are we shooting off little firecrackers when God gives us the opportunity to use dynamite? God's Word is powerful! Let us read it, read it, read it, and then use it!
2) JESUS KNEW!- In Luke 8, we have Jesus sitting at a meal, when a sinful lady (known by reputation) came in to anoint the feet of Jesus. Here is what the Pharisees said in verse 39: "This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner." The thing is... Jesus did know! Here is what Jesus knew: a) Her Brokenness- vs. 44 "but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head." The tears of repentance flowed out of her eyes and she used them to wash the feet of the Savior, and her hair to dry his feet. She was humble, broken, repentant,... everything we must be to stand in Christ's presence. Then notice b) Her Adoration- vs. 45 "but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet.' What they would have been repulsed by, she gladly bent over to kiss and keep kissing the feet of Jesus. How much do we love Jesus? Would we be there continually kissing His feet? What a show of love and adoration. She loved the Savior.... shouldn't we. Oh to have such a humble love of our Savior that we are never too embarrassed to show Him and others our love! Then notice: c) Her Exaltation vs. 46 "but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment." We see that it was an alabaster box of ointment according to vs. 37 and other Scriptures tell us that it was very expensive. It was perfume that she might have used to ply her trade.... but she won't need it anymore! She is a new creation in Christ.... old things have passed away. She exalts the Savior by pouring this very expensive ointment on His feet. It is saying: "Thou art worthy!" It is giving Christ herself, and her best. Oh what lessons these Pharisees and us can learn by the heartfelt actions of a lady who loved the Savior. Let us have the same brokenness, adoration, and exaltation for our Savior!
3) THE LORD HATH NEED OF HIM- In Luke 19:34, when asked to loose the colt that Jesus would need to ride upon, the owner asked what was going on and the answer was: "And they said: The LORD hath need of him." That was all the answer that was needed. The LORD hath need of him. What do you have in your keeping that the LORD might have need of? It is all His in the first place. Can He ask you for whatever, simply knowing "the LORD hath need" of it? There was no explanation of what it was for, or why Jesus needed the animal, simply: "The LORD hath need of him." This is all we need to answer the call to missions... the LORD hath need of him. This is all we need to give of our possessions... the LORD hath need of them. This is all we need to put ourselves into the work of God... the LORD hath need of us. Oh dear friend.... let us ever be available knowing that at any moment.... the LORD might have need of us.
Well, this is all the time I have this morning, I hope you have a blessed day! Pastor Mike Mutchler