You Are Part Of Christ’s Body On Earth

1 CORINTHIANS 12 NLT 12 The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up only one body. So it is with the body of Christ. 17 Suppose the whole body were an eye–then how would you hear? Or if your whole body were just one big ear, how could you smell anything? 18 But God made our bodies with many parts, and he has put each part just where he wants it. 21 The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.” The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.” 22 In fact, some of the parts that seem weakest and least important are really the most necessary. 27 Now all of you together are Christ’s body, and each one of you is a separate and necessary part of it.
Scripture says we are a Body — not just that we are “like a body.” You ARE connected to everyone who acknowledges Jesus Christ as Lord — whether you like them, or think they are necessary, or not. Whatever happens to ANY member of the Body does have an affect on EVERY member.
Remember this the next time you are tempted to speak ill of another believer, or mistreat them. Even if they don’t believe exactly like you, or go to the same church — they are still connected to you in Christ. So be nice to your Body!
We are members of Christ’s Body on earth. Today let Jesus Christ manifest His love and wisdom through us.

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We Shall Be Like Jesus

1 JOHN 3:2 NKJ 2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.
God’s plan is to change you. He will not quit until you are like Jesus Christ.
ROMANS 8:29 NKJ 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.
God has already made the decision. You WILL be like Jesus! (It may take awhile — but God has plenty of time.)
Surely this doesn’t mean an identical physical appearance, but perfection. Perfection morally, spiritually — and yes, even physically and mentally.
So don’t be discouraged with where you are now. God is still at work and He is no quitter.
PHILIPPIANS 1:6 NKJ 6 being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;
How is God doing this? Primarily through His Word. So, stay in the Word. The more you expose yourself to the accurate Word of God, the more you will be changed into the likeness of Jesus Christ.

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Prayer Guidelines

Prayer is communication with God. Talking with Almighty God is the greatest privilege you have.
God desires a growing relationship with you. Communication is essential for a relationship to develop. Involve God in every part of your life: every decision and every action. In that sense you should pray without ceasing — always being in communication with God.
However, we need special prayer times focused completely on the Lord. He is worthy of our time and attention — and we require this time with Him to develop spiritually.
Remember the instruction given in Psalm 100:4, “Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise.” If you seem to run out of words to praise God, use some of the Psalms, or praise and give thanks in tongues (1 Corinthians 14:16-18).
Many use the model prayer our Lord gave in Matthew 6:9-13 as a guideline for their special daily prayer time. Some of the principles taught are:
*You are praying to your Father. *First worship and honor God. *Pray that God’s will be done before praying about your own or others’ needs. *Ask for God’s forgiveness and help. *Finish by praising God.
During times of prayer many find it helpful as a memory aid to have a prayer list of people and things to pray for. Also, keeping a journal of your prayer requests and answers is beneficial and will bless you tremendously as the years go by.
Always base your prayer on Scripture. Scripture is God’s answer. Receiving from God in prayer involves taking His answer (His Word) to Him and receiving your request by faith.
Also, every believer can and should develop the habit of praying much in tongues. This not only edifies you spiritually (1 Corinthians 14:4, Jude 1:20), but allows you to pray with a wisdom beyond your ability and knowledge (Romans 8:26-27).
Prayer is a privilege.

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Possess The Land

NUMBERS 33:53 NKJ 53 ‘you shall dispossess the inhabitants of the land and dwell in it, for I have given you the land to possess.
JOSHUA 1:3 NKJ 3 “Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given you, as I said to Moses.
In Old Testament times the people of God received promises to possess the physical land. They faced literal giants keeping them from possessing what God said was theirs.
Today we face a similar challenge: overcome the obstacles and possess the promised blessings given in the New Testament.
How can we possess and enjoy these promised blessings?
Faith!
HEBREWS 6:12 NKJ 12 that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
What belongs to us? What has God said is ours to “possess”?
“All things!”
2 PETER 1:3 NKJ 3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,
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?
1 CORINTHIANS 3:21 NKJ 21 Therefore let no one glory in men. For all things are yours:
As New Testament believers our “giants” are demons and unbelief. Every promise of blessing is ours to claim and possess by faith.

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Why Pray?

JOHN 15:5 NKJ 5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
There are three reasons to pray: for God’s benefit, for your benefit, and for the benefit of others.
To Benefit God
Just as earthly parents enjoy talking with their child, our Heavenly Father enjoys hearing from you.
Also, God desires certain things done on Earth, but He has delegated authority to mankind. Through our requests, God can justly intervene in earthly situations and bring His will to pass. So, praying in line with God’s Word benefits God.
To Benefit You
Prayer is communication with God. It includes listening, discussion, and giving thanks — not just asking for things.
Relationship requires communication. Your relationship with the Lord will never grow without communication.
Time spent in prayer helps you stay tuned-in spiritually — remaining sensitive to God. Prayer keeps you “connected” with God. It helps keep your focus on God and how great He is.
Prayer is a way of humbling yourself and is the opposite of doing things by yourself. Receiving direction from God is the greatest help you can get. If you fail to seek God’s help, you are headed for trouble, because the devil sets traps to destroy you.
Also, talking with God forces you to honestly face your situation — for you know you cannot fool God.
To Benefit Others
All around us, people are in great need. Through prayer we can appropriate heavenly help on their behalf.
God can do more in one minute than you can do in a lifetime.

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You Must Control The Devil

JAMES 4:7 NKJ 7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
Most believers expect God to control the devil, but God gave you that responsibility.
EPHESIANS 4:27 NKJ 27 nor give place to the devil.
Would God tell you not to let the devil have any place, if you had no say about it? If the devil does have a place in your affairs, it’s because you allow it.
The devil will take over — if you let him.
Jesus won the victory. It legally belongs to you. But the devil is a criminal, who doesn’t obey the law unless forced to. You must enforce Jesus’ victory and Lordship in the situations of life, or the devil will take control by default.
No human being, in themselves, is any match for the devil. So you can’t resist him in your own ability or name. You are not more powerful than the devil, but you do have more authority as a believer in Jesus Christ.
Just as a policeman in uniform has the backing of the entire government and all its forces, so believers have the backing of God and all His forces, when we stand against the devil in Jesus’ Name.
God gave you authority to resist the devil, and expects you to use it. If you disobey God by not using it, things will not go very well in your life.
Praying to God to stop the devil’s operations is no different than my son asking me to take out the trash, after I 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.

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God’s Word Is A Seed

Most people expect God’s Word to work like a stick of dynamite — but Jesus told us God’s Word is like a seed.
LUKE 8:11 NKJ 11 “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
The Holy Spirit, through Peter, also said God’s Word is a seed.
1 PETER 1:23 NKJ 23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever,
God’s Word is alive. Just like a seed — the Bible is full of unseen life.
JOHN 6:63 ICB 63 It is not the flesh that gives a person life. It is the spirit that gives life. The words I told you are spirit, and so they give life.
Jesus said His words are alive. They contain life, so they give life. The words in your Bible may look lifeless and powerless. Seeds do, also. But they are not without life or power.
In Mark 4:30-31, Jesus explained that the kingdom of God works like a seed. So, if we are to understand God’s kingdom and how He operates, we need to understand seeds.

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The Deceitfulness of Riches

MATTHEW 13:22 NIV 22 The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful.
How are riches deceitful? (The word really means a delusion.)
Riches promise more than they can deliver. They promise security, happiness, and satisfaction in life, but fail to deliver.
Does this mean God is against wealth? No! He just doesn’t want you to be deceived by it. Or, to trust in it. For it will surely disappoint you.
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.
According to Jesus, life does not consist of the abundance of one’s possessions. You should believe Him. He knows.
LUKE 12:15 NASB 15 And He said to them, “Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not {even} when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions.”
Watch out! Don’t let money deceive you.
Having wealth — a bunch of stuff — will not give you a satisfying, fulfilling life. It promises to. But it can’t deliver.
Things will not make you happy — not for long. It’s your inward attitude, and doing God’s will, that determines whether you will enjoy happiness in life.
If having more money was the answer, why do rich people commit suicide?
Money promises security, but can never quite attain it. In contrast, God delivers security — for eternity.
HEBREWS 13:5 NIV 5 Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
Money can leave you and forsake you, even when you need it most. But God will never abandon you.
Riches will let you down. God never will.

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Rahab

HEBREWS 11:31 NKJ 31 By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish . . .
Rahab was not a descendant of Israel. She was a harlot from the city of Jericho, which God commanded Israel to utterly destroy. But because of her faith, all that was hers was spared. She also became an ancestor of Jesus of Nazareth, being the great- great-grandmother of King David (Matthew 1:5-6).
No matter who you are, or what you have done, there is hope for you. Through faith in God, and His provision, your life can be changed.
Rahab asked that all her family and all their possessions be protected. This action evidently pleased God because Hebrews 11 commends her faith, and tells us that without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6,31).
JOSHUA 2:12-13 NKJ 12 “Now therefore, I beg you, swear to me by the Lord, since I have shown you kindness, that you also will show kindness to my father’s house, and give me a true token, 13 “and spare my father, my mother, my brothers, my sisters, and all that they have, and deliver our lives from death.”
Note that Rahab asked for a token, a sign. They told her to place a blood-colored cord in her window — representing her faith in God’s provision of blood under the Old Covenant.
JOSHUA 2:18,21 NKJ 18 “. . . bind this line of scarlet cord in the window through which you let us down . . . . 21 Then she said, “According to your words, so be it.” And she sent them away, and they departed. And she bound the scarlet cord in the window.
JOSHUA 6:23,25 NKJ 23 And the young men who had been spies went in and brought out Rahab, her father, her mother, her brothers, and all that she had. So they brought out all her relatives and left them outside the camp of Israel. 25 And Joshua spared Rahab the harlot, her father’s household, and all that she had . . . .
We should stand in faith just as Rahab did and ask for the lives of all our family members, and for all our possessions.
Then we must “display the scarlet cord” in our windows — the Blood of our Savior Jesus Christ. When the devil comes to steal, kill, or destroy us, or anything that belongs to us, we must make sure he sees the Blood of Jesus.
If a harlot, who had no covenant with God, by her faith received God’s protection for all her family and possessions, surely as believers in the New Covenant established by Jesus’ Blood, our faith can do at least as much.

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Redeemed By His Blood

1 PETER 1:18-19 NKJ 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold . . . 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.
Some Christians shy away from talking about blood — but not the Bible. In fact, the Bible presents blood as an integral and honored part of Christian teaching.
Blood represents life, and Jesus freely gave His life to redeem you.
COLOSSIANS 1:13-14 NKJ 13 He has delivered us from the power of darkness and translated us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, 14 in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.
The blood of Jesus — representing the giving of His life — was the payment for your freedom. You should give bold testimony to the power of the precious Blood of Jesus. It is what has set you free!
Sin opens the door for the devil. But Jesus’ Blood cleanses us from all sin and closes the door of opportunity to the devil.
1 JOHN 1:9 NKJ 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Jesus’ Blood enables us to stand before God as if sin had never existed. We have no other plea for entrance into God’s presence but the precious Blood of the Lamb.
HEBREWS 10:19 NKJ 19 Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus,
The blood of Jesus represents all that God accomplished for you in His great redemption.
We should display the token of Jesus’ Blood over the boundaries of our lives — anywhere the devil might have an opening — by releasing our faith in the sufficiency of that precious Blood through words.

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