Our absolute trust and reliance upon Jesus is the Solid Rock upon which we build the foundation of our faith…
I touched on this the other day in how Jesus is both the Aleph and Tav in the Old Testament, and the Alpha and Omega in the New Testament, the Author and Finisher of our faith.
In my morning devotions the other day, I ran across this scripture, where God says to Moses:
The Angel and the Promises
20 “Behold, I send an Angel before you to keep you in the way and to bring you into the place which I have prepared.
21 Beware of Him and obey His voice; do not provoke Him, for He will not pardon your transgressions; for My name is in Him.
(NOTE: it is very significant that He says “My NAME is in Him,” as it relates to our praying in Jesus’ name in the New Testament)
The reason why the word Angel is capitalized is because this is Yeshua that is being spoken of.
There are several times in the Old Testament where the Living Word appears and it is called a Theophany.
The apostle John emphasizes this when he begins his gospel account.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. (John 1:1-3)
The apostle Paul also affirms this truth in the book of Colossians.
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible….And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. (Colossians 1:15-17)
The Lord Jesus Christ was present at the beginning of creation—He was and is our Creator.
His pre-existence is further affirmed by His many appearances documented throughout the Old Testament.
Theophany is a theological term that refers to an encounter with God prior to Christ’s incarnation.
What particularly got my attention was
the statement “My Name (authority) is in Him” (v. 21), which shows that this messenger, this Angel of the Lord, is none other than “the Living Word” Himself; and with the promise of His presence and protection comes the warning “obey His voice,” for the Lord is a holy God who cannot dwell in the presence of sin.
Obedience is the evidence of reality of the covenant relationship.
The Angel of the Lord “encamps around those who fear Him” (Ps 34:7).
The reason why I’m bringing this up is because when Jesus tells us (in the New Testament) to pray in His Name,
He’s not talking about some hocus pocus magic, like click your heels three times and you get what you want.
When Jesus was speaking to His disciples about His departure, after the resurrection, He said the following:
22 Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you.
23 “And in that day you will ask Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, WHATEVER YOU ASK THE FATHER IN MY NAME He will give you.’
Praying in Jesus’ name is praying for things that will honor and glorify Jesus.
Saying “in Jesus’ name” at the end of a prayer is definitely not a magic formula.
It means that, as ambassadors (God’s representatives here in the Earth) for Christ, that we are standing in obedience to Him and in His authority, in order to facilitate God’s will being done here in the Earth as it is in heaven.
If what we ask for or say in prayer is not for God’s glory and according to His will, then saying “in Jesus’ name” is meaningless.
Genuinely praying in Jesus’ name and for His glory is what is important, not attaching certain words to the end of a prayer.
It is not the words in the prayer that matter, but the purpose behind the prayer.
Praying for things that are in agreement with God’s will is the essence of praying in Jesus’ name.
As God’s occupational Force, here in the Earth, we are to complete the mission that Jesus started, and we are to do it in the way that He demonstrated.
When the Bible says that Jesus is now seated at the right hand of the Father, the scriptures are letting us know that Jesus’ work is FINISHED (at Calvary’s cross), in that having offered up propitiation for our sins, He has prepared the way and has done EVERYTHING necessary for us to go out and complete the work that He began.
And so as God’s occupational force in the Earth, this has to be our daily confession:
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live BY FAITH IN THE SON OF GOD, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”
Jesus is the Rock on which our faith is built, and faith in God (our willingness to take risks and step out in obedience to His Word) is the means by which we are to navigate through the storms of our life, here on Earth; and without that Faith the Bible says it is impossible for us to please Him (Heb 11:6).
So once again this gets us back to our original point, that Jesus is both the Author and Finisher of our faith; and He is both the Foundation and Anchor that allows us to weather any storm!
In his book, Six Hours One Friday, Max Lucado tells the story of how he and his boat survived a hurricane.
An old sea man gave Max the advice to take his boat to deep water, drop four anchors off each corner of the boat, and pray that the anchors held.
Max survived that storm, but he says that he learned an important lesson, all of us need an anchor that will hold during the storms of life.
That anchor is our faith. What have you put your faith in?
How important is it to have faith?
Where do we find a faith strong enough to make it through the storms of life?
Peter knows how important faith is and he gives us a great picture of faith, a faith that we can anchor deep with, and a faith which will hold us during the storms of life.
1 Peter 1:3-12
A New Life
3-5 What a God we have! And how fortunate we are to have him, this Father of our Master Jesus!
Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we’ve been given a brand-new life and have everything to live for, including a future in heaven—and the future starts now!
God is keeping careful watch over us and the future. The Day is coming when you’ll have it all—life healed and whole.
6-7 I know how great this makes you feel, even though you have to put up with every kind of aggravation in the meantime.
Pure gold put in the fire comes out of it proved pure; genuine faith put through this suffering comes out proved genuine.
When Jesus wraps this all up, it’s your faith, not your gold, that God will have on display as evidence of his victory.
8-9 You never saw him, yet you love him. You still don’t see him, yet you trust him—with laughter and singing.
Because you kept on believing, you’ll get what you’re looking forward to: total salvation.
10-12 The prophets who told us this was coming asked a lot of questions about this gift of life God was preparing.
The Messiah’s Spirit let them in on some of it—that the Messiah would experience suffering, followed by glory.
They clamored to know who and when.
All they were told was that they were serving you, you who by orders from heaven have now heard for yourselves—through the Holy Spirit—the Message of those prophecies fulfilled.
Do you realize how fortunate you are? Angels would have given anything to be in on this!
When Peter wrote his letter, things were changing.
In the beginning of the first century church, the government remained unconcerned about this new religious sect, and as the church grew, the constrictions of the government increased.
Peter is writing to a people who are finding it increasingly difficult to live their faith.
Even today it is not easy being a Christian, but we must find a way to live our faith without compromise.
Sooner or later the storms of life will begin to blow and then the question becomes will the anchor of faith hold.
If our faith is set upon the things of this world, then our faith will perish.
Countless kingdoms have come and fallen, economies have been built and destroyed, and nations have been established and vanished.
All that is left of some of those kingdoms are the ruins you can see in a museum.
Only the kingdom of God has remained constant in the past two thousand years.
Our faith is to be set in heaven, and not on the things of this world. That is the only way that we know our faith is imperishable.
Jesus is our example in all things related to life and ministry. . .
“So let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2)
Fri, December 17
WHERE’S FAITH WHEN YOU NEED IT?!?!
“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
— Romans 10:17
I could tell you about countless difficult and drawn-out circumstances over which we have tried to stand firmly in faith until they finally came to pass.
Sometimes we made it and sometimes we were weak and began to doubt.
But God mercifully came through for us on most of these things, despite our lack of strength to stay faith-ful.
There are some things in our lives that take a lot of prayer and a lot of faith to overcome. But why is it so hard sometimes to stand in faith for those things?
D.L. Moody spent many hours praying for faith.
He once said, “If all the time I have spent praying for faith was put together, it would be months.
I thought that someday faith was going to come down and strike me like lightning. But faith did not come.
Then one day I read in the 10th chapter of Romans,
“So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.”
I now opened my Bible and began to read God’s Word and faith has been growing ever since.”
Much of what we believers describe as ‘faith’ has nothing to do with Biblical faith.
Our faith must not be based on emotion, or want, and not on the latest exciting conference or revival.
But it must be centered on God’s Word, on Yeshua (Jesus), His death and resurrection, His salvation.
The Living Word is the eternal, everlasting love of God that has been poured out upon our lives.
Let’s read, hear, apply and live the Word today, and we will grow strong in faith!
Your family in the Lord with much agape love,
George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
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