This Is My Bible

This is my Bible.

I am who it says I am. 1 Corinthians 1:30

I can do what it says I can do. Philippians 4:13

I am going where it says I will go. John 14:3

God’s Word is milk for my soul. 1 Peter 2:2

God’s Word is seed for my faith. Luke 8:11

God’s Word is light for my path. Psalm 119:105

God’s Word is power for my victory. Hebrews 4:12

God’s Word is freedom for my life. John 8:32

When I read God’s Word, it brings me joy. Jeremiah 15:16

When I study God’s Word, it keeps me from shame. 2 Timothy 2:15

When I seek comfort in God’s Word it gives me hope. Romans 15:4

When I memorize God’s Word, it purifies my heart. Psalm 119:11

When I quote God’s Word, it defeats my enemies. Ephesians 6:10, 17

When I meditate on God’s Word, it brings me success. Joshua 1:8

When I abide in God’s Word, it gives me confidence. John 15:7


Memorize God’s Promises

Have you ever felt like you were losing your vital optimism? Have you ever come to the place where you felt like laying down and quitting? Have you ever been in a place where the word “never” was the key word of your life? Maybe you were saying things like, “I’m never going to be happy again…I’m never going to change…I’m never going to be able to live a consistent life…I’ll never see my family members saved…” It is at times like this when we are losing our vital optimism or our hope.

So what do we do when this begins? We make a choice. We can give up and let our hope die. Or we can get in the Bible and find promises from God to help us. If you are going to be a man or woman of faith you’re going to have to be a student of the Bible.

When we get to the place where hope is dying within us we may start saying things like, “If God would do…I would keep my hope.” But the interesting thing is that miracles don’t produce faith. Thousands upon thousands of people saw Jesus do all sorts of miracles, and yet only a small number believed. Miracles don’t produce faith. In fact, the best I can tell there is only one thing that produces faith, and that is the Bible. What we need to do is find promises that God has given and memorize them. Do everything we can to hide these promises in our hearts so that when Satan tries to discourage us or we are tempted to despair, we can remind ourselves of God’s promises. Let me give you some that are good to memorize.

My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.” 1 John 2:1-2 (NKJV)

God’s desire for us is that we would not sin. That being said, at some point we are all probably going to mess up and sin. What happens to us when we blow it? Does Jesus suddenly turn against us? No, Jesus is our advocate WHEN we sin. Satan will certainly use your failures against you to steal your vital optimism, remember that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ (Romans 8:1) and that Jesus is your advocate.

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 15:58 (NKJV)

And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” Galatians 6:9 (NKJV)

Since Jesus is risen from the dead and is/will be ultimately victorious nothing we do for Him or in His name is ever in vain. Everything we do for Jesus no matter how seemingly insignificant has eternal significance. This is true even when we don’t see earthly fruit. One of the things that steals our vital optimism is when we feel that what we are doing is ineffective or doesn’t matter. When those thoughts come fight them by remembering that everything we do for Jesus has eternal significance.

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James 4:8 (NKJV)

One of the things I have found in my life is that it is disturbingly easy for me to drift away in my relationship with God. The idea of drift is that it is a gradual thing. For most people that really is what happens. I don’t know if I’ve ever met anyone who took leaps and bounds away from their relationship with God. For most people it is a gradual drift away. It’s not something we mean to do. It’s not something we plan to do. Gosh, it’s probably not even something we want to do. It’s just something that happens so gradually we don’t even realize that it’s happening until we look at how far we’ve gone and say, “Holy cow! How did I get here?” Not much kills our vital optimism like feeling like we are far from God. We fight this by remembering God’s promise that if we draw near to Him, He’ll draw near to us.

There are many more promises I could give here but you get the idea. We can fight to regain the loss of hope by memorizing promises that counteract our despairing thoughts.

What causes you, or is causing you, to lose your hope? What promises has God given about that?

Find it.

Read it.

Memorize it.

Think about it often.

Recite it to yourself often.

Meditate On The Power Of God

There will be many times in life where the circumstances of our lives are out of our control but they are never out of God’s control. So instead of focusing on what we can’t do, we focus on what God can do. One of the most important things we can do to regain hope is to remember God’s great power. It’s helpful for us to meditate on passages and stories in Scripture that demonstrate God’s great power. Let me give you a few examples of God’s great power to meditate on.

God spoke the world into existence -Scripture always explains that God is the Creator of all that exists. The Bible starts out by telling us that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (Gen 1:1) I love the that. We are given the picture that nothing but God existed until God decided that other things needed to exist. There was nothing until God spoke and then there was something. God did not use any sort of preexisting material to create the world. He created “ex nihilo” or out of nothing. Unlike the false gods of the creation myths, God didn’t remodel. He actually created all that there is.

Not only did God create the world out of nothing, He did it in a very particular way. He spoke these things into existence. Throughout Genesis 1 there is an oft repeated formula, “God said…and then there was…” Psalm 33:6 and Hebrews 11:3 both testify to the fact that God merely spoke the world into existence.

As I was thinking about this, I came to the conclusion that there was a very specific purpose for being told that God spoke the world into existence. Any time I see repetition in Scripture, as we see in Genesis 1, I underline it because I feel that God is emphasizing something in this repetition. What God seems to be emphasizing here is His great power.

Did God strain to create the world?

Did it require a great deal of effort for God to create the world?

No, God didn’t strain Himself and it didn’t require a great deal of effort from Him. Creating the world was as easy for God as speaking the words. Creating all that there is didn’t require any more effort out of God than merely speaking. God is so powerful that His words can bring things into existence that didn’t exist before and there is no one or nothing that can stop or hinder Him. That is awesome.

Jesus raised the dead. There are at least three occasions where Jesus raised the dead to life.

Jesus brought Jarius’ daughter back to life. Mark 5:35-43

Jesus brought a widows son back to life. Luke 7:13-16

Jesus brought Lazarus back to life. John 11:1-46

As I mentioned with creation there is no indication here that this was hard for Jesus. His unlimited power made raising the dead a simple thing.

Jesus has all authority in the spiritual world. On every occasion that Jesus encountered a demon, the demon was forced to submit to the power of Jesus.

The demon possessed man at the synagogue. Mark 1:23-27.

The men with legions of demons. Matthew 8:28-34, Mark 5:1-20, Luke 8:26-36.

The demon possessed boy. Matthew 17:14-21, Mark 9:14-29. The disciples failed to cast out the demon. Where they failed, Jesus succeeded. Every encounter had the same outcome. The demons were scared of Jesus and had to submit to His power and authority

God will bring history to a close. The book of Revelation is ultimately about God bringing history to a close. What is awesome when you read the book of Revelation is that God just does it. When God determines it’s time to start pouring out judgment, He just does. God causes lightning and thunder to come on the earth. God causes a star to fall upon the earth. God causes the sun to burn super hot. God causes the weird animal like things to come on the earth. God just does it and there is no one who can oppose Him.

There is a period of time when the anti-Christ reigns on earth and it seems as though he has all power but it’s an illusion. The Bible says that the authority this man has was given to him (Revelation 13:7). Who gave this authority? It was God. When God decides that anti-Christ has reigned long enough He just conquers him and tosses him in a pit for a thousand years. After a thousand years he gets out but it’s God who lets him out. When God decides that has gone on long enough He takes the devil and tosses him in the lake of fire for all of eternity.

Through it all, God just does it. From the perspective of earth, the devil is a great adversary for the Lord. From the perspective of God, not so much. The book of Revelation is not a story of Satan’s last hurrah against God and whew thankfully God wins. The book of Revelation is the story of how God pours out a measure of judgment on the world before bringing history to a close and fully bringing all the world, Satan and the demons included, into judgment.

These are just “things” that God has done and doesn’t even take into consideration all the people God radically changed.

Moses. From privileged son of Pharaoh’s daughter with anger management issues to the great leader and law giver of Israel.

Peter. From common fisherman with who suffered foot in mouth disease to the man who preached on the day of Pentecost.

Matthew. From tax collector to an apostle and Gospel writer.

Paul. From legalistic Pharisee that persecuted the church to the great grace preaching apostle and church planter.

God’s power in the world or power to change lives has not diminished from Bible times to now. What God did then He can do today.

When we are waiting on God and it seems so very hopeless we have to remember what God can do. If we focus on all the things we can’t do, it will be more than we can stand. Instead we must focus on God and what He can do.

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