God With Us

MATTHEW 1:21-23 NIV
21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the
name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said
through the prophet:
23 “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son,
and they will call him Immanuel”–which means, “God with us.”

Part of the wonderful good news of the New Testament is that
God is not just a far-off God, but He is right with us.

With us — in many ways.

With us as we face life — right here to help us. Not far away,
and out of touch with what we are facing. Not difficult to
reach — but only a prayer away.

With us in understanding what it is like to live on earth and
face the problems and difficulties we all face.

With us in knowing what it is like to experience pain and loss.

With us in knowing what it feels like to be rejected and
despised and misunderstood.

With us in knowing what it is like to be hungry and have
nothing to eat.

With us in knowing how difficult it can be to struggle against
sin.

With us in knowing what it is like to be attacked by the devil.

HEBREWS 4:15 NIV
15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize
with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in
every way, just as we are — yet was without sin.

God came to earth. He became a man. (No, I don’t understand
that, I just accept it.) Jesus experienced what we experience,
yet He always walked in victory.

If you let Jesus, He will guide you into victory, also.

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God Cannot Lie

TITUS 1:2 NKJ
2 in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised
before time began,

It’s not just that God has decided He will not lie — He CANNOT
lie.

God only speaks truth!

JOHN 17:17 NKJ
17 “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.

Whatever God says comes to pass. God cannot lie, because
anything He says will come into being — even if it did not
exist before He said it.

GENESIS 1:3 NKJ
3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

So God’s Word is ultimate reality! More real, and lasting, than
anything we can presently see.

God cannot lie because it is contrary to His nature. God’s
nature is one of selfless love for others. His nature is not to
deceive. It is natural for God to be truthful and never to
deceive.

NUMBERS 23:19 NLT
19 God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he
does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act?
Has he ever promised and not carried it through?

HEBREWS 6:18 NLT
18 So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two
things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to
lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have
great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us.

This is what makes the foundation of our relationship with God
so solid — God has given us His Word — which cannot fail. If
we are ever presented with evidence contrary to what God says,
we can know we are being presented with a lie. For it is
impossible for God to lie.

God cannot lie because it is not His nature, and because
whatever He speaks will happen.

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Magnify God

ACTS 10:46a NKJ
46 For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God.

PSALM 34:3 NKJ
3 Oh, magnify the LORD with me, And let us exalt His name
together.

In the New Testament, the word translated “magnify” is the
Greek word “megaluno.” It means to make great or enlarge.

We certainly cannot make God any greater, but we can perceive
Him as greater in our lives. In other words, what we think of
God can be enlarged.

How can we do this?

What you focus your attention on will seem bigger, because you
are choosing to let it occupy your time and thinking.

Very small objects can block very large ones. A small coin in
front of your eye can block the sun from view. Yet the sun is
infinitely larger than the coin. It’s the placement in your
life that determines how big things seem to you.

An airplane in the sky can look very small, though in reality
it is huge. That is only because you are far away from it.

When Scripture talks of magnifying God, we assume it meant they
were praising God and talking of His greatness and goodness.

Does God seem big and capable in your thinking? If not, then
magnify Him!

Do the problems you face seem like giants? Then remove your
attention and focus from the problems — de-magnify them — and
focus on the Lord. To shrink the problem, magnify the solution.

The more you think about a problem you are facing, the larger
it can seem. The more you think about God, what He has created,
and all He has done, the smaller the problem will look compared
to God.

God IS greater than any problem or any situation you face. You
just need to realize it and quit letting the problem be your
focus.

Praise God and magnify Him!

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Heaven Is Our Home

PHILIPPIANS 3:20 LB
20 But our homeland is in heaven, where our Savior, the Lord
Jesus Christ, is; and we are looking forward to his return from
there.

Heaven is a real place. In fact, Heaven is ultimate reality.
There are real people there, involved in real activities. But
most importantly, our wonderful Lord Jesus Christ and our
Father God are there.

Sometimes people talk of someone who has departed this life as
“having gone to their reward.”

Heaven is not a reward.

There will be rewards given out by God, but going to Heaven is
not a reward. Heaven is a return to normal.

That’s right. Heaven is the way life was supposed to be. Heaven
is normal. What we have been experiencing on this sin-infested
planet is sub-normal.

But part of the Good News is that Jesus will not leave this
place, or us, sub-normal forever. One day, maybe soon, Jesus
will return from Heaven and change things on Earth back to what
God intended when He created this place.

Everything on Earth, as originally created, was a reflection of
the home planet, Heaven. All the beauty and everything good
that we enjoy on Earth is but a dim reflection of what Heaven
offers.

What makes Heaven our home? Home is where your family is. Home
is where you are comfortable. Home is where you have a place to
live. Home is where you belong. For the believer in Jesus
Christ, Heaven fits all those descriptions.

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Tell satan Where To Go

MATTHEW 4:10 NLT
10 “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the
Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the Lord your God; serve only
him.’ ”

Jesus spoke directly to the devil — and so must you.

Many Christians think they should pray about the devil and ask
God to deliver them from his attacks. But the Bible is clear —
God has given the authority to believers to resist the devil.

You must control the devil, or he will control you!

Unless you exercise the authority delegated to you by Jesus
Christ, the devil will wreak havoc in your life, and everywhere
he is allowed to.

LUKE 10:19 NKJ
19 “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and
scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing
shall by any means hurt you.

Praying to God to stop the devil’s operations is no different
than my son asking me to take out the trash, after I have told
him to do it.

God told us to resist the devil and he would flee. We must
believe and act on God’s Word.

EPHESIANS 4:27 NKJ
27 nor give place to the devil.

Would God tell us not to let the devil have any place, if we
had no say about it? If the devil does have a place in our
affairs, it’s because we allowed it.

JAMES 4:7 NKJ
7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee
from you.

We must first submit to God, because we are not greater in
power than the devil. But submitted to God in Christ Jesus, the
devil must back off when we resist him and his works.

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Hold Fast What Is Good

1 THESSALONIANS 5:21 KJV
21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.

Sometimes things that should be obvious to us are not. Like, if
what you are doing is not working out, it would be wise to
consider a change.

Too many people are not receiving the blessings God’s Word
promises, things the Bible says God desires us to have. But
instead of considering changing things in their life, too often
people fall into the temptation of blaming God and thinking He
is holding out on them.

But that is never true! There is never any fault or problem
with God.

PSALM 84:11 KJV
11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give
grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that
walk uprightly.

If you are acting on the Word and planting good seeds, don’t
let the devil discourage you and cause you to give up too soon.
But if the course of your life is going the wrong direction,
and it is not getting better over time, then it would be wise
to consider your ways — and make changes.

This is not something that should be done too hastily. Often
the only thing we are doing wrong that keeps God’s provision
from manifesting in our life is giving up on our faith too
soon.

Jesus told us the kingdom of God works like a seed (Matthew
13:31, Mark 4:26). A seed takes time to grow. Just because
full-grown blessing is not yet evident in your life is no sign
it is not growing.

If you do need to change, what are the changes you will need to
make? Always it will be following the directions God gave us in
His Word.

If you think you are following the directions in God’s Word,
and they are not producing freedom, peace, and wholeness in
your life (over time), then it is very possible you are
somewhat inaccurate in your interpretation and understanding of
the Word. Because acting accurately on God’s Word will make you
free.

JOHN 8:31-32 NKJ
31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you
abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.
32 “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you
free.”

Don’t be discouraged or disheartened. Just abide in God’s Word
and always look to Him and He will give you wisdom to know what
to do.

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Freely Give Us All Things?

ROMANS 8:32 NKJ
32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for
us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all
things?

Most people approach prayer as an exercise in convincing God to
help. They think they must twist God’s arm, or promise to do
something, in order to get God to give them anything.

The New Testament paints a different picture. God not only is a
willing giver, but has already given! He is not holding back on
us!

When He gave us Jesus, along with Him He gave us everything we
could ever need.

“Why then,” you may ask, “do I not have what I need?”

Friend, there is a great difference between something being
given and something being received.

Many people have been unaware recipients of great good, but
until they became aware of it and took the necessary steps to
properly receive their bounty, it did them no good.

You can be entitled to some inheritance, or other windfall,
without knowing it. You can even know it, but without following
the proper procedure, not possess and enjoy it.

So it is with the things of God. Proper procedure must be
followed. There are instructions on how to receive. But the
instructions are clear and easy to follow. You will find them
in the New Testament.

1 TIMOTHY 6:17 NKJ
17 Command those who are rich in this present age not to be
haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living
God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy.

God gives us richly all things to enjoy!

Don’t judge God’s generosity by what you have, or have not,
received. Find out the instructions from the Bible, and receive
all that God has provided for you.

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Heaven Is A Happy Place

PSALM 16:11 NKJ
11 You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is
fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Heaven is where God is fully manifest and in His presence there
is fullness of joy. That’s why Heaven is a happy place!

FULLNESS OF JOY! We have never yet experienced that, but in
Heaven we will.

REVELATION 21:4 NKJ
4 “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there
shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be
no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”

In Heaven there will be nothing that will ever cause
unhappiness. Everything will always be perfect.

LUKE 15:10 NKJ
10 “Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the
angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

Angels are smiling, not frowning. God is not mad. No one in
Heaven is having a bad day. No one is struggling.

ROMANS 14:17 NKJ
17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but
righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Where God rules everything is right and there is peace and joy!
God Himself is the Source of joy and is Himself full of joy.

ZEPHANIAH 3:17 NKJ
17 The LORD your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with
His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”

God is not worried or afraid. He rejoices in His work, His
creation. He has confidence in His plan and His ability to
carry it out. In His presence is fullness of joy because He is
full of joy and everything He does produces joy.

PSALM 2:4 NKJ
4 He who sits in the heavens shall laugh; The LORD shall hold
them in derision.

Bad things may be happening here on earth. But it is not
worrying Heaven or causing discouragement there. Because a
glorious future has been determined and nothing will stop God’s
plan.

Jesus of Nazareth came from Heaven and perfectly revealed God
to us in human flesh. He was not a somber man everyone was
afraid to be around. No! Jesus attracted people like children
and sinners. He was known as a friend of sinners. Jesus was no
killjoy. As a perfect man with complete faith in God, it is
very likely that Jesus laughed a lot, rejoicing in God and His
creation.

Even though we still face things on earth that are not perfect,
because Heaven is our true home we should be happy, too!

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The Lord Is Guiding You

JOHN 16:13 NKJ
13 “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will
guide you….

This article is directed to believers in Jesus Christ to remind
you there are many scriptures indicating that God IS guiding
you.

Too often we feel like we are just on our own, drifting
aimlessly, with no help or guidance from God. Just because you
are not aware of God’s guidance does not mean He is not guiding
you. This is part of God’s genius: to be able to do things
unnoticed.

When we don’t understand God’s method of operation, we easily
fall prey to the temptation to doubt God is guiding us, or even
hearing our prayers. This often leads to begging God for help,
which is not faith, and will not produce good results.

We must believe what God says in His Word concerning this
subject of guidance, if we desire to please God.

It is always wise to talk with God before making any decision.
But just because you don’t hear God’s audible voice answering
you, does not mean that God is not directing you. His primary
means of guiding you are His written Word and the witness of
the spirit inside you.

God will never guide anyone to act contrary to the teaching of
the Bible. That is one reason it is so important to read and
study the Bible.

All of the following are scriptures you can apply to yourself.
(Only the pronouns have been changed to make them personal.)
Saying these will strengthen your faith.

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not lack. He leads me beside
the still waters. He leads me in the paths of righteousness for
His name’s sake. (Psalm 23:1-3)

God will instruct me and teach me in the way I should go. He
will guide me with His eye. (Psalm 32:8)

God will bring me by a way I did not know; God will lead me in
paths I have not known. He will make darkness light before me,
and crooked places straight. God will do these things for me,
and not forsake me. (Isaiah 42:16)

Thus says the Lord, my Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am
the Lord your God, Who teaches you to profit, Who leads you by
the way you should go.” (Isaiah 48:17)

The Lord will guide me continually. (Isaiah 58:11)

I follow Jesus so I shall not walk in darkness, but I have the
light of life. (John 8:12)

The Spirit of truth has come and He is guiding me into all
truth. He will tell me things to come. (John 16:13)

I am led by the Spirit of God for I am a son of God. (Romans
8:14)

Now thanks be to God who always leads me in triumph in Christ.
(2 Corinthians 2:14)

It is God Who works in me both to will and to do for His good
pleasure. (Philippians 2:13)

The Lord Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake
you.” So I may boldly say: “The Lord is my helper; I will not
fear.” (Hebrews 13:5-6)

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God’s Word Is Like A Seed

LUKE 8:11 NKJ
11 “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

A seed is powerful.

As a seed begins to grow, it will push up dirt, rocks, etc.
Whatever the obstacles are, God’s Word planted in your heart
will push them out of the way.

A seed begins its growth in secret (underground).

The only way to tell if a seed is growing is to dig it up, or
wait for a plant to appear. If you dig up a seed, you may kill
it.

A seed takes time to produce.

No one expects a seed to produce a harvest the same day that
seed is planted.

Sometimes the Word of God seems to spring up and bear fruit
immediately. Yet, if we knew the details, we would understand
that the fruit of the Word grew in that person’s life over
time.

A seed is persistent.

A seed never gives up, but works day and night. Even when you
are sleeping, the seed you have planted is working to grow and
express itself in a fruitful harvest.

A seed is not affected by other seeds.

Whatever happens to other seeds does not make any difference to
a specific seed. Each seed sticks to its own task. One wheat
seed planted in a corn field will still produce wheat. Seed
does not become discouraged, or quit, even if other seeds die.

A seed will stop growing without nourishment.

Planting a seed is not enough to assure a harvest. Seed must be
protected and taken care of until harvest time. A seed which is
dug up, or not watered, will not produce.

More seeds planted produce a larger harvest.

2 CORINTHIANS 9:6 NKJ
6 But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap
sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap
bountifully.

Think on these truths about seeds. Allow the Holy Spirit to
help you apply them to the role of God’s Word in your life.

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