GETTING THE MOST FROM GOD'S WORD:

"Do NOT labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting LIFE..." - The Gospel of John 6:27 (NKJV)
A systematic and daily reading of the Word of God is important in maintaining a strong Christian life. Establish a daily quiet time with God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you understand what you read. By following our daily Bible reading schedule through this blog, you will be able to read the Bible through in a year. Please note that you may utilize the ‘BIBLE READER’ app that is installed at the bottom of this webpage to assist you in reading the specified scripture portion for today.

To get the MOST from God's Word, please do the following intentionally:
1. REQUEST God to connect with you as you read the word of God with FOCUS and OPENNESS to see what God wants to speak with you.
2. READ the selected sections of Scripture slowly as you mark the words and phrases that intrigue you, even reading them the second time to get a better understanding.
3. REFLECT on what God is communicating to you; stopping long enough to let the seed of God's Word take root in your heart.
4. RESPOND to the passage speaking directly to God about what is in your heart, and then look out for ways to live out what you find - individually, and to others within your church and elsewhere.

As you read and meditate, ask yourself the following three questions:
a) What is God speaking to me through this passage?
b) Is there a command, a promise or a warning for me?
c) Is there an example for me to follow?

Please POST your comments below if there is a thought or message that the Lord has spoken to you through the passage that you are reading and meditating today. Please make sure that your post is aligned to the scripture passage mentioned at the header. All comments should pertain to the relevant scripture portions only, and should be aimed to glorify God (the true author of 'The Bible') & edify everyone who visits this blog site daily - both young and old. May God bless you abundantly for encouraging others through your comments!

Let's PRAY...
LORD, give me the desire to take a little time out of my busy schedule today as I read and meditate on Your Word. Give me this day MY DAILY BREAD. Speak to me clearly & lead me today as my Good Shepherd. Help me to be a blessing to others who interact with me as I attempt to be a living witness of Your Word today. In Your Name I pray, AMEN.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

What a ‘BLESSED ASSURANCE’ we have in JESUS!

What a ‘BLESSED ASSURANCE’ we have in JESUS!

November 3 Bible Reading: John Chapters 13-15

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:1-3)

When our Lord Jesus Christ spoke the above words to His disciples, He knew very well that in a short time He would be undergoing intense agony in the garden of Gethsemane, and facing the indescribable sufferings and death on the cross after being betrayed by his chosen disciple Judas Iscariot (13:21). On top of that, His chief trusted disciple Peter would be denying Him, not once but three times (13:38). He would soon be leaving His disciples as He returned to His eternal home in heaven (13:33). When Jesus communicated all these matters to His disciples, it is not surprising that His disciples were troubled about their dismal and darkened future (vv. 1, 27).

In order to allay the fears of His disciples, Jesus began encouraging them by telling them about His future plans and the work that He would be doing after He reaches heaven. Thus, Jesus stirred both their faith in God and in Him, which should appease any troubled heart. Jesus then told them about His impending departure, the sending of the Holy Spirit, the promise of spiritual power, of answered prayer, and of peace, but especially the promise of His imminent return. However, the most comforting ‘blessed assurance’ that Jesus communicated to His disciples was that He would be preparing rooms for them in His Father’s house in heaven and then return to take them there.

The backdrop of this assurance that Jesus gave His disciples is reflective of the process involved in a Jewish wedding. After the engagement is over, the Jewish bridegroom returns to his father’s mansion, and immediately starts constructing separate living quarters where he can spend the rest of his life with his newly engaged bride. It is the bridegroom’s father who decides when the housing project is complete and the living quarter for the new couple is ready. Upon his permission, the bridegroom returns to his bride’s house in order to bring her to place he has prepared in his father’s house for her. The bride of Jesus Christ is the universal church of born-again believers, who is getting herself ready to receive her bridegroom Jesus, who has promised to return to get her soon (see v.3; Eph. 5:23-27; Rev. 22:7).

These comforting words by Jesus are directed to all His disciples through whom He was going to lay the foundation of the church. The disciples should be comforted since Jesus was going to prepare an abode for them in heaven (“My Father’s house”), which was ‘a prepared place for a prepared people!’ The glories of heaven belong only to those who have personally trusted Christ for their salvation. All of God’s children will have secure places in heaven for them to dwell forever. As surely as Jesus went away, He will come back again soon (see 1 Thess. 4:16–18; 1 Cor. 15:51–58), and His desire is to have His own with Him for all eternity. This is the promise that brings hope to our troubled hearts!

For the last 2000+ years, Jesus has been preparing a wonderful home for us to inhabit for eternity, and while He is doing that in heaven, the Holy Spirit is preparing the redeemed on earth to secure their place in heaven. We already have our names already written in heaven (Luke 10:20) where we will have every spiritual blessing (Eph. 1:3). Heaven will be a place of unimaginable beauty, splendor and majesty. However, the best part of heaven is that we will be with Jesus and with those we love forever. Our desire should be to be with Jesus in heaven, which is the essence of what Apostle Paul wrote: "For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain...For I am hard pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better" (Phil. 1:21, 23). What a blessed assurance we have in Jesus!

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