Thursday, August 18, 2022

THE HOLY SPIRIT OF GOD IS WITHIN US

PROCLAMATION

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves.  Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?”  2 Corinthians 13:5 (KJV)

 

EXPLANATION

These words were written by the Apostle Paul, under the influence of The Holy Spirit of God, to the believers in the church at Corinth.  In this the last chapter of Second Corinthians, Paul tells them that he plans to visit them in order to personally address the incorrigible members among them who did not respond to his repeated warnings. (2 Corinthians 13:1-2)  He exhorts them to examine themselves.  Then he asked them a rhetorical question, “Do you not realize that Christ Jesus in you?”  He ends by telling them to strive for full restoration, to encourage one another, to be of one mind, and to live in peace. (2 Corinthians 13:11)

 

APPLICATION

As believers we are saved.  Unfortunately, even though we are believers in Christ, we still sin.  When we fall back into sin, we do not lose our salvation; we just interrupt the fellowship that we have with Christ.  That is why we should frequently ask to be forgiven because we sin daily.  Remember, in addition to our actions, our sinful behavior, we can sin with our words (Matthew 15:18) and with our thoughts. (Proverbs 23:7 and Matthew 5:28)  There are also sins of omission as well as sins of commission.  We all need to check ourselves regularly and confess our sins.  When we pray, we should ask God to forgive us, cleanse our heart and mind, and renew a right spirit within us. (Psalm 51:1-4 and 10)  The Holy Spirit of God is within us (Ezekiel 36:27) and our behavior should exhibit the fruit of The Spirit. (Galatians 5:22-23)  Our life, our walk, and our talk should be different after we accepted Christ than it was beforehand.  It does not matter how long we have been in Christ, we should all be growing in knowledge and holiness. (2 Peter 2:18)  The only things that do not grow are things that are dead.  We should strive to be more Christ-like each day.  People should be able to see The Christ in us.

 

 

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

A THORN IN THE FLESH

PROCLAMATION

“And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me …. For this I besought The Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.  And He said unto me, ‘My grace is sufficient for thee; for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’  Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”  2 Corinthians 12:7-9 (KJV)

 

EXPLANATION

These words were written by the Apostle Paul, under the influence of The Holy Spirit of God, to the believers in the church at Corinth.  Paul begins this chapter defending his apostleship by boasting about the vision which he was favored with. (2 Corinthians 12:1-5)  Then he states that in order to prevent him from being filled with pride and vanity, he was given a physical ailment which grieved him.  Paul said that three times he asked The Lord God to remove it but the answer to his prayer was “no”.  God told Paul that His grace was sufficient to help him endure it, and that His power was made perfect in his weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:7-9)  Then Paul said that because of that he now delights in weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and difficulties.  For when he is weak, then he is strong due to the power of God. (2 Corinthians 12:10)

 

APPLICATION

The Lord God hears our prayers. (1 Peter 3:12)  Sometimes we do not get what we ask for because His answer is “no”.  That could be because He has something better planned for us, or because we asked for things which do not glorify God. (John 14:13)  There are times when He allows things to happen to us in order to get our attention.  We tend to pray really hard when times are bad.  We need to acknowledge Him all of the time and in all things, good and bad. (Proverbs 3:6)  We even need to see the silver lining in every storm cloud. (James 1:2)  Bad things which happen to us can work out for our good. (Genesis 50:20 and Romans 8:28)  In all things, we should give God glory.  His grace is sufficient for us.  His power can be revealed through our weakness.  Sometimes we need a thon in our flesh to cause us to focus on Him.

 

 

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

BEWARE OF FALSE TEACHERS AND FALSE DOCTRINE

PROCLAMATION

“For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached … or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.”  2 Corinthians 11:4 (KJV)

“For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.  And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.  Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”  2 Corinthians 11:13-15 (KJV)

 

EXPLANATION

These words were written by the Apostle Paul, under the influence of The Holy Spirit of God, to the believers in the church at Corinth.  In this chapter, Paul continues his discourse on the false teachers.  He tells the believers in Corinth that he will continue his attack on false teachers, and he says that no one can stop him. (2 Corinthians 11:10-12)  Those false prophets deceive the people just as the serpent deceived Eve in the Garden of Eden. (2 Corinthians 11:3)  Paul said if anyone come to them preaching a different gospel or doctrine is a false prophet. (2 Corinthians 11:4 and 11:13)  Paul said that Satan masqueraded as an angel of light, and his servants can masquerade as prophets. (2 Corinthians 11:13-15)  He ends the chapter by recounting the trials and suffering that he has gone through. (2 Corinthians 11:16-33)

 

APPLICATION

An important reason for reading and studying The Word of God is to know it well enough to be able to recognize when someone is presenting something which is different and wrong.  Eloquent speech can be full of lies which are presented artfully.  All doctrines, philosophies, religions, and teachings should be compared to God’s Holy Word before they are accepted as true.  Satan is continuously roaming the earth, back and forth, seeking those whom he may deceive and destroy. (Job 1:6-7 and 1 Peter 5:8)  He is cunning and crafty, and he is full of lies. (John 8:44)  Do not be deceived by those who come presenting lies. (Deuteronomy 11:16 and Luke 21:8)  As the saying goes, “all that glitters is not gold.”  Just because it sounds good, or seems right, does not mean that it is the truth.  Also, we should beware of those who come glorifying themselves and not glorifying The Lord God.

 

Monday, August 15, 2022

BELIEVERS ARE AT WAR WITH THE WORLD

PROCLAMATION

“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh.  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds.  Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God …”  2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (KJV)

 

EXPLANATION

These words were written by the Apostle Paul, under the influence of The Holy Spirit of God, to the believers in the church at Corinth.  In this chapter, Paul offers a defense of his ministry and his attack on the false teachers who oppose the gospel of Christ.  Though physically weak in statue, Paul spoke boldly against them through the power of God. (2 Corinthians 10:10)  Here he tells them that although they live in the world, they do not fight their battles like the world does. (2 Corinthians 10:3-4)  He admits to them that his letters are bolder than he is in person. (2 Corinthians 10:9-11)  He ends by boasting, within limits, on his work and the works of others spreading the gospel. (2 Corinthians 10:13-16)

 

APPLICATION

Because we are in Christ and He is within us, we are physically in this world but not of this world. (John 8:23)  Because we are not of this world, we do not fight our battles like the world fights. (2 Corinthians 10:3-6)  The life of every believer is battle against Satan, and his principalities and powers, and the men of the world which he uses to corrupt the hearts of believers. (Ephesians 6:12)  The more useful we are to the purpose of God and His kingdom, the more we are attacked.  That is why we need to put on the whole armor of God so that we can stand strong against the attacks of the devil. (Ephesians 6:11-18)  We must always be on guard because the battle is not physical but psychological and spiritual.  The devil is after our minds and our hearts, and if he can’t get them, he will attempt to destroy our credibility, influence, and effectiveness.  In truth, the battle against Satan is not ours, it belongs to God. (2 Chronicles 20:15)  We are just pawns in this war and in this game of life, used for His glory and purpose.  We need to make sure that we are ready for service in His army.  We already know that in this war we will be victorious. (1 Corinthians 15:57)

 

Sunday, August 14, 2022

AS WE SOW SO SHALL WE ALSO REAP

PROCLAMATION

“But this I say, he which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.  Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity; for God loveth a cheerful giver.”  2 Corinthians 9:6-7 (KJV)

 

EXPLANATION

These words were written by the Apostle Paul, under the influence of The Holy Spirit of God, to the believers in the church at Corinth.  In this chapter Paul is continuing the topic he began in the previous chapter, requesting a generous gift from the believers in Corinth to help the believers in Macedonia. (2 Corinthians 9:1-5)  He tells them that they will be rewarded in the same manner as they give.  He tells them that God will bless them abundantly and that for helping the poor, their righteousness will endure forever. (2 Corinthians 9:6-9)  He also says that God will increase what they have and enrich them in every way so that they can continue to be generous in the future. (2 Corinthians 9:10-12)

 

APPLICATION

As believers, we are encouraged to give to, and to help, the less fortunate.  The Bible says we will be blessed for doing so. (Proverbs 22:9)  Here Paul quotes The Old Testament when he tells them, “They have scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.” (Psalm 112:9)  Jesus said that as we treat the least of His people, He will take it as if we have done it to Him. (Matthew 25:35-45)  Jesus also said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)  If you want more of something, try giving others more of what it is that you want.  That applies to smiles, love, and money.  The Bible teaches us that as we give, so shall we receive. (Luke 6:38)  Remember, when a seed is planted, and it grows, it does not just bring forth another seed, but it produces many seeds, sometimes thirty, sixty, or even a hundred seeds. (Matthew 13:8 and 13:23)  Think about a kernel of corn, when it is planted it produces a plant with several ears of corn, each of which has more than sixty kernels of corn on them.  There are two important points here.  First, we will reap the same thing that we sowed.  Secondly, we will get back more of what we sowed than we gave out.  The Lord God can bless us abundantly with all that we need and even with more than we need. (2 Corinthians 9:8)



Saturday, August 13, 2022

CHRIST BECAME POOR SO THAT WE MIGHT BECOME RICH

PROCLAMATION

“For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich.”  2 Corinthians 8:9 (KJV)

 

EXPLANATION

These words were written by the Apostle Paul, under the influence of The Holy Spirit of God, to the believers in the church at Corinth.  In order to help the generous believers in Macedonia, who were undergoing a severe trial, Paul was requesting a generous gift from the believers in Corinth. (2 Corinthians 8:1-3)  Since the believers in Corinth excelled in everything, including faith, speech, knowledge, earnestness, and love, Paul asked them to excel in the grace of giving. (2 Corinthians 8:7)  He reminded them that The Lord Jesus, The Christ, was rich but became poor for their sake, so that they through His poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9)  Paul encouraged them to match their willingness to help with their following through and actually helping by giving according to their means. (2 Corinthians 8:11-12)  He urged them to share so that none of the believers would do without.  Then he quoted from the Old Testament scriptures (Exodus 16:18) to support his request. (2 Corinthians 8:13-15)  He ended by saying that he was sending Titus to them to collect the offering from them. (2 Corinthians 8:22-24)

 

APPLICATION

The Bible teaches us that we should help those who are in need.  Those of us who have should share with those who have not.  It is better to give than to receive. (Amos 20:35)  When we give and help those who are in need, we are actually lending to The Lord and He will repay us for helping them. (Proverbs 19:17)  When we are generous and provide a blessing to others, we will also be blessed. (Proverbs 11:25)  Remember what Christ did for us.  He left the splendor of heaven, put on human flesh, became poor, did nothing but good and was rejected, was crucified, He died, was buried, and rose from the dead for us to pay the debt for our sins.

 

 

Friday, August 12, 2022

LET US RID OURSELVES OF EVERYTHING THAT CONTAMINATES US

PROCLAMATION

“Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”  2 Corinthians 7:1 (KJV)

“Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.”  2 Corinthians 7:1 (NIV)

 

EXPLANATION

These words were written by the Apostle Paul, under the influence of The Holy Spirit of God, to the believers in the church at Corinth.  Paul begins this chapter by encouraging the believers to cleanse themselves for all sinfulness of mind and body because we have the promises of God.  The promises which Paul is referring to are: 1. that God will receive us if we obey Him; 2. that God will be a Father to us; and 3. that we will be His sons and daughters. (2 Corinthians 6:17-18)  Paul says that since we have these promises from God, we should purify our body and spirit of everything that contaminates us, out of reverence to Him.

 

APPLICATION

These promised blessings are conditional promises, they depend upon our obedience to God’s Holy Word.  We need to help each other obey Him.  We should encourage one another to engage in holiness of heart and life and not in the sinfulness of the flesh or evilness of spirit.  We need to lead a Christ-like life if we want God to treat us as His children.  We have already been cleansed by the blood of Christ, but we contaminate our heart and mind daily with our sinful thoughts, words, and actions.  That is why we need to pray, confess, and ask to be forgiven daily in order to be cleansed from our sins and unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)  We also need to turn from our sinful ways. (2 Chronicles 7:14)  We cannot clean up our heart, mind, or spirit, by ourselves.  Only God can do that for us. (Psalm 51:10) However, He will only do it if we pray and ask Him.  We need His help to walk this Christian walk.