Friday, July 29, 2011

How Many Times do I Have to Tell You?

1 Timothy 1-Part 2
As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do.
1 Timothy 1:3-4


"How many times have I told you?" was such a repeated question at our house when our children were growing up. Do I even need to mention that  it was said wihile shaking my head no? How about you? I always had to repeat something in order for them to "get it." Probably, that is a common thing for parents and children. Isn't that how things learn, though, by repetition? Dare I wonder, taking it a step further, does my heavenly Father say the same thing about me, "How many times does that girl have to repeat this test before she 'gets it'?" However, since God is all-knowing, He knows how many times I'll have to repeat the test before it is learned. I hope He stays patient with me.

Yesterday, I bought a book by Warren Wiersbe entitled, Be Faithful, It's Always Too Soon To Quiet!
which is a study on 1 & 2 Timothy, Titus, and Philemon. As I read through the beginning, I noticed Wiersbe pointed out how many times a word or phrase was repeated in these four books. Here's what I found:
-faithful (pistos in Greek) was used at least 17 times,
-Savior, a title used 10 times,
-charge, sometimes translated "commandment" and "command" used 8 times,
-doctrine, teach, teacher, teaches, teaching used 32 times,
-conscience (s) used 21 times.

Looks like I'm not the only one who needs to hear something over and over again before I get it, or is sinks in.
Here's a verse in Isaiah 55:3, which says, Come to me with ears wide open. Listen, and you will find life."

So I need to listen to the Lord more closely.


Looking at our key veerses, Paul didn't waste time explaining the purpose of his letter to Timothy: to direct Timothy to stay in Ephesus so he could warn church leaders not to involve themselves in the spreading of false belief and practice. He charged Timothy to maintain his commitment and obedience to the Lord.

Abide means to stay put and charge some is to take a strong stand. (Liberty Bible Commentary)

Paul is encouraging Timothy to not leave due to myths trying to sidetrack God's people in argumenting and speculation rather than focusing on proclaiming the gospel and nurturing believers in the Christian life. (Shepherd's Notes)

I'll admit, sometimes it is hard to stay put when things aren't going well. It is even harder to take a strong stand for the Word of God when it's unpopular.


Listen to what the Lord has to say to me, then obey.

Stay put until He says go.

Take a strong stand for the Lord and His Word and ways.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Grace, Mercy, and Peace

Introduction to 1 Timothy                   July 28, 2011
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Savior, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope; Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.  1 Timothy 1:1-2


This is the first of two letters Paul wrote to Timothy, his son in the faith. It was  the first of the three inspired letters written, known as the Pastoral Epistles, with the letter to Titus being written second, and then last was the second letter to Timothy.

"Evidence points to Paul's writing 1 Timothy and Titus shortly after his release from his first Roman imprisonment (A.D.62-64), and 2 Timothy from prison during his second Roman imprisonment (A.D.66-67), shortly before his death," states The MacArthur Bible Commentary.

I didn't realize there has been controversy concerning who the actual author was. However, after reading several commentaries, evidence supports Paul as the aurthor. something else I had not thought about, was that instead of being written to a church, like his previous letters, this letter is written to a person, Timothy.

The MacArthur Bible Commentary states: 
After being released from his first Roman imprisonment (Acts 28:30), Paul visited several of the cities in which he had ministered, including Ephesus. Leaving Timothy behind to deal with problems that had arisen in the Ephesian church, such as false doctrine, disorder in worship, the need for qualified leaders, and materialism, Paul went on to Macedonia, from where he wrote Timothy this letter to help him carry out his task in the church.

Who was Timothy?
Timothy's name means "one who honors God," given by his mother Eunice and grandmother Lois. These ladies were devout Jews who became believers in the Lord Jesus Christ and taught Timothey the OT Scriptures from his childhood. His father was a Greek who may have died before Timothy met Paul. [Acts 16-18 and 2 Timothy gives us this information, of which I am not going to state all of the verses.]

Timothy was from Lystra , a city in the Roman provice of Galatia (part of modern Turkey). Paul led Timothy to Christ probably during his ministry there on his first missionary journey. He chose Tim to accompany him whenever Paul revisited Lystra on his second missionary journey.  Probably Tim was very young, late teens or early twenties, had a godly reputation. So Timothy became Paul's disciple, friend, and colaborer for the rest of Paul's life, minisering with him in Berea, Athen, Corinth, and accompanying him to Jerusalem.

Timothy was with Paul during his first Roman imprisonment and went to Philippi after Paul's release. Timothy served as pastor in the church at Ephesus. He was imprisoned somewhere and released, according to Hebrews 13:23. Being asscociated with Paul for years meant Timothy learned Paul's theology, doctine, and more about Christ. (Whew! I think that's enough background for us now.)

What is some teachings found in 1 Timothy?
Instructions dealing with false doctrine and false teachers; importance of prayer; roles of men. women, and  leaders and pastor in the church; laity instructions concerning older, widow, elders, slaves; faithfulness and separation.


Many years ago, one night after church services, we found a little dog who had been dropped off outside the building. Since it didn't have a collar on, we adopted the poor thing. (It was in the hot summer.) Our two children fell in love with it; they bathed her, fed her, and played with her. Because we showed her grace by bringing her home with us, we decided to name the dog Grace.
Grace even slept on the foot of my daughter's bed. (I think it was the only dog she became attached to.) We all enjoyed the new member of our family. Then one day, Grace disappeared. We never saw her again. Did she run away? Did someone take her? Did her former owner find her? We don't know to this day what happened to Grace. It was sad, but we have fond memories of that dog. We were glad that Grace came into our lives. Isn't it that way for Christians? We are glad God showed us grace?

Grace means to get what we don't deserve. As sinners, we don't deserve God's grace. We are sinners saved by grace.
Mercy means you don't get what you do deserve. We deserve seperation from a holy God, hell as punishment for our sins and rebellion against Him, but He shows us mercy instead.
Peace means to bind together that which has been separated. Christ is our peace and binds us to God.
[Reference: Liberty Bible Commentary]

How thankful I am for God's grace, mercy, and peace. Aren't you?

Paul called Timothy his own son in the faith. In the Greek, the word for son as it's used here is teknon, which means a child, a born one. Just as every young preacher needs a spiritual father, so so we as a a child of God need a heavenly Father.

Henry and Richard Blackaby say this in their devotional book Experiencing God Day-By-Day:
Grace is the unearned gifts the Father bestows on His children. His grace bless us with the riches of heaven.
Mercy is God's withholding the punishment we deserve because of our sinfulness. The consequences of our sin is death, yet Jesus paid this penalty for us. God is long-suffering and delays our just punishment so we'll repent and receive His gift of salvation.  (Rom. 6:23, 2 Peter 3:9)
Peace is the state of mind and heart we experience when we are confident of God's grace and mercy toward us. It sustains us even in the most difficult crises. (Phil. 4:7)

Do I, like Paul, ask for grace, mercy, and peace of God for my loved ones?


Seek God's grace, mercy, and peace. Then show it to others.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Summary of 2 Thessalonians

Summary of 2 Thessalonians             July 27, 2011

But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil.  2 Thess. 3:3


Well, the clouds moved on yesterday. All we got in my neck of the woods was only a few sprinkles. I probably could have counted the drops on my car windshield. The ground is so dry that our son counldn't pull a fence post out of the ground without help. I know our heavenly Father has a purpose for this extreme hot and dry summer in mid America. Maybe we Americans should pray to Him more often and more intensely, repenting of our sins like the Hebrews in the Old Testament. God does control all things, even the rain.  Wasn't it three years He withheld rain during Elijah's day? Oh, my, what a thought. Friends, let's pray for mercy. The Lord is faithful. He does whatever He pleases.

Can you believe we have finished our walk through another epistle of Paul's? Of course, it was only three chapters long. That's why I went verse by verse and not just picking out a few verses in a chapter to focus on. Shall we review a few main points?

* Paul wrote this letter only a few months after writing the first epistle, during his eighteen month stay in
    Corinth. Silas and Timothy were with him there. However, shortly thereafter, Silas drops out of sight,
    according to the book of Acts.
* Paul's purpose in writing a second time to this church was to correct any errors-second coming of Christ
    was immediate so some they sold everything to wait on the hilltops for His return.
* The flock were discouraged by persecution and needed incentive to persevere.
* They were deceived by false teachers who confused them about the Lord's return.
* They were disobedient to divine commands, particularly by refusing to work.
* Three times in each chapter Paul uses the phrase "the Lord Jesus Christ."
[Resource: The MacArthur Bible Commentary, Liberty Bible Commentary]


Were there any particular verses that especially spoke to you in this book?
In reviewing, there were a few phrases Paul used that were significant to me:

Chapter one talks about:
-your faith is growing
-the love of every one of you for one another is increasing
-having perseverence and faith midst persecutions and affliction
-worthy of God's kingdom
-rest for the afflicted
-counted worthy of His calling, fulfilling his goodness, and work of faith (in them)
-glorifying our Lord Jesus Christ.

Chapter two talks about:
-don't be shaken by (false teachers) messages not from us
-there will be a falling away from the faith and the son of perdition will be revealed
-you're the beloved of the Lord
-chosen for salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth
-stand fast in the Word
-God has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace
-comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word.

Chapter three talks about:
-the Lord is faithful and will strengthen and protect us from the evil one
-direct your hearts in the love of God
-no work, no eat
-some are busybodies
-be not weary in well doing
-don't associate with the disobedient ones
-Lord of Peace give you peace
-grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.
[Reference: New American Standard Bible]


Of what do I need to let go or to do?

Be ready for and count on the second coming of Jesus.

Persevere with faith.

Keep on working for and with Jesus.

Share His love and grace.


2 Thessalonians 3-Part 6
The salutation of Paul with mine own hand, which is the token in every epistle: so I write. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.  2 Thess. 3:17-18


Twice while we visiting our daughter, who lives in the northeast, we drove close to Boston and walked the Freedom Trail. Now did you notice I said close? We parked the van and took the T, which is the name for the train system in this big city. With so many commuters and few parking facilities, it's very convenient. Anyway, in order to ride the T, a person had to purchase tokens, which were in place of real coins or tickets. This was probably the only times I have used tokens.
Paul used the term in this salutation, conclusion, or benediction of his second letter to the Thessalonian church. How did this word fit in?

A token is that by which a person or thing is distinguished from others and known; a sign, a mark.

Evidently, Paul signed his name  in order to prove such a letter was actually written by him because he often had a secretary. Remember when Luke and Tertius were dictating for him? Frequently Paul ended his leters "The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you." Perhaps that was like his signature. I'm not sure. Whatever his token, the receptient of a letter knew it truly was from Paul. He had an identifying signature.

Charles Swindoll said, "In doing so, he gives the letter an indisputable mark of genuineness. By comparison, we, as living letters, have the 'distinguishing mark' of Jesus Christ. Like the distinctive handwriting on the Declaration of Independence, the Lord put His John Hancock on our lives. That distinguishing mark is God's grace."

Are there any tokens significant to my being a Christian as I am Jesus' living letter to a lost world? Are my actions and words showing that I am a token for Jesus?


Here are some thoughts from Swindoll in his book Steadfast Christianity:
When Paul concludes this letter with "The Lord Jesus Christ be with you all," we realize that it's the quality of graciousness that transforms our living letters into more treasured correspondence-love letters.
In 2 Corinthians, where Paul refers to the Corinthian believers collectivelly as "a letter of Christ," he also describes them as "a fragrance of Christ" (verse 15). For this, he gives thanks to God, who "manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place" (verse 14). If you've ever received a letter scented with the fragrance of someone very much in love with you, you have the picture of what God intended your life to be to others. Fragrant...enticing...evoking strong, tender with eagerness. In the past, a lonesome word has received from the church mostly form letters. You may not be able to change the postal system, but you can change your own letter. You can make it personal, and you can make it gracious. The world has been waiting for such a long time for a fragrant love letter from home. Won't you be the one who sends it?

Yes, I want to be a sweet fragrance of Christ through which His love letter is read by the world. Will you join me?


Make sure my token on this world is that of love.

Let my life be a sweet fragrance to Christ and the world.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Junk Mail

2 Thessalonians 3-Part 5
Now may the Lord of peace Himself continually grant you peace in every circumstance. The Lord be with you all!  2 Thess. 3:16 NAS


Use to, I would go to the mailbox and it would be full most days. Oh, it wasn't all letters from friends or family, and not even bills, but junk mail. You know, the ones marked "occupant". Now that's what I call advertisements that I'm not the least bit interested in-insurance ads, credit cards invitations, new cars to be won, free stuff,  you name it; they go into the trash without being opened. Lately it dawned on me that we have been receiving less junk mail. In fact, some days the mailman doesn't even stop because there is nothing to deliver. (Maybe the economy has hit companies hard, too, so they spend less money on advertising.)
Now that there is email available, I seldom write letters. Sometimes I send out a thank-you notes and birthday cards, but that's about all. I wonder if people are reading what I write, or is it junk mail to them?

Our lives are living letters and there should be a distinguishing mark we place in those letters. In 2 Corinthians 3:3, Paul refers to the believer as "a letter of Christ." In a sense, we're the pen and ink that communicate Christ to a world illiterate of His love. What's my living letter like?

"How about your living letter? Is it read eagerly or with secretarial obligation? Is it warm and inviting or cold and impersonal? If nobody's bothering to read your letter, perhaps it would be best to get some fresh stationery and give the pen to Jesus. As living letter, we reflect the Lord-from the truth of the words to the grace of the penmanship. Although people cannot see the Author, they can see His words and feel their impact. They can touch the pages of our lives and feel His heartbeat-His presence. And His presence in our lives is never so visible as when we demonstrate peace in all our circumstances," states Charles Swindoll in his book Steadfast Christianity.

Is my life like junk mail to the Lord, empty of His love, full of the world, deserving to be tossed into the trash? Or is my life filled with meaning, prayer, serving Jesus, giving to others? Things to ponder.

Looking at the last part of verse 16, by all means, I want the peace God has to offer me. Jesus is the LORD  of PEACE. Doesn't that come by surrendering to His will and doing it His way instead of mine? I don't want my life to count as junk mail does here in my home.


Verses 14-15 say, "And if anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of that man and do not associate with him, so that he may be put to shame. And yet do not regard him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother."  NAS

Liberty Bible Commentary says:
The word note (semeioo in Greek) implies that the person who refuses to obey the Word of the Lord while professing to be a "Christian" should be marked out and distinguished in some way from normal believers so that he is disassociated from them. He is not to be treated as an enemy, however, but as a brother. It must be made clear to that person that if he wished to associate with believers he must be willing to submit to and obey the Word of God (Matt. 18:17).

I don't want to be that kind of noted person, do you?


Make my living letter count for Christ, not junk mail.

Be a person that is obeying the Word of God.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Flittering Hummingbirds

Thessalonians 3-Part 4
For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies. Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread. But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing.
2 Thess. 3:11-13


Have you ever sat quietly and still watching hummingbirds? For several years now, I have hung a feeder on our front porch for these tiny creatures. You know, the one with the red sweet liquid. It's amazing how fast they can fly, even going backwards. Sometimes I hear them go by before actually seeing them, they're so fast. My eyes can't see nor my brain comprehend how fast they flap their wings, flittering, I call it, in order to stay in place while drinking from the feeder. Well, I guess there are people like the hummingbirds. They flitter here and flitter there to tell some new news or add to some old news.

But, I must say, I'm not the kind of person who calls up people, staying on the phone for hours, discussing matters concerning others,  (getting into their business, if you will) nor do I stay on Facebook very long. I'm in and out there too. So what am I busy doing with my time? Is it spent studying  the Word of God, helping others, or doing good deeds for my family and the Lord?

If I look up the word busybody, whose face do I see? Is it  a neighbor, a friend, a family member, a church member? Rarely is it our own, right? I was trying to find something encouraging in today's scripture focus, but failed. So I take verse 11 as a warning as Paul recognizes a potential problem.

The New American Standard version says it this way: "For we hear that some among you are leading an undisciplined life, doing no work at all, but acting like busybodies."

Okay, these people Paul is describing are not out working, nor minding their own business are they?
You know I had to look up the word busybody to see if my picture was there. Whew! I think I only saw 1/2 of my face. Could it be that I'm just as guilty because I listen to what others have to say, spreading jucy news, acting as a busybody, and I don't stop them? Yep, that's me. Instead of saying, "Oh really?" and encouraging them, I should "nip it in the bud" as Barney Fiff used to say, cutting them off at the pass so to speak. "It's none of my business, " is a better answer. Changing the subject by asking a question concerning that person might work.

Here's the definition found in Thayer's Lexicon using the word busybody-To bustle about uselessly, to busy one's self about trifling needlessly, useless matters. Young's Concordance says it's to work all around.

So what a busybody does is useless, of no value. Webster's Dictionary defines useless without function or effect, not useful. Well then, what a busybody does or says accomplishes nothing good.
I don't think I want to be one of those bustling, trifling, flittering bb's.

In his book Steadfast Christianity, Charles Swindoll says, "Busybody is a neon word that flashes intermittently throughout the New Testament. It means to meddle in the lives of others. Busybodies flit from house to house taking little nectared drops of gossip with them, leaving behind their own residue of irritating pollen. There's a vast difference between putting your nose in other people's business and putting your heart into their problems; the curious versus the caring."

Which am I?


It looks like Paul's advice in verse 12 is similar to what he gave in his first letter: "And to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you," found in 1 Thessalonians 4:11.

What does quietness mean in this verse? It is descriptive of the life of one who stays at home doing his own work, and does not officiously meddle with the affairs of others. (Thayer's Lexicon)

That's plain and simple, isn't it?

Just as there is planting, watering, and waiting for a harvest by the farmer in the physical sense, there is the same process in the spiritual sense, too. See James 5:7-8.

Galatians 6:9 says, "And let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we shall reap if we do not grow weary."

Friend, keep on sharing the love of Jesus. Scatter those seeds of faith. Don't be weary in well doing. Jesus will reward us. We may even see some fruit of our labor while here on earth. We'll work til Jesus comes and we'll be gathered home.


Don't be a busybody; be a body busy for Jesus.

Be refreshed every day by our Lord and His Word.

Be not weary in will doing.  Serve Jesus, not self.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Where's our Work Ethic?

2 Thessalonians 3-Part 3
For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.   2 Thess. 3:10


Do you have a job outside the home or is your main job keeper of the home? Either way, it is work. I was a teacher in both public and Christian schools for 15 years. Most of those years were while our children were growing up at home, so I know how demanding two jobs can be. My job was a supplement to my husband's income from small churches who could not provide him a full-time pastor's salary.  Also, my income helped  with our family's provisions.

Paul and his missionary team worked to support themselves so they would not be a burden to the local church. He tells that in verse 8, how they worked day and night. (He was a tent maker by trade.) He paid his own way, picked up his own tab, even though the Lord allowed preachers of the gospel to to obtain their livelihood from the gospel (1 Cor. 9:14). He was a good example, a model, for the Christians to follow.

In 1 Corinthians 4:12, Paul says he labors, working with his own hands.

Philippians 2:5-7 states, "Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bondservant, and being made in the likeness of men."

Are you a me-first person or an others-first person? Do you cling to your rights with a tight grasp, or do you empty yourself, like Christ and Paul, for the sake of others? The degree of willingness to give up your rights reflects your true priorities (verses 3-4). [Steadfast Christianity]

I still work outside the home now, only two days a week, at our family business. The other three days I babysit my granddaughter, which isn't really considered work to me. Paul's instructions on work-eat, don't work-no eat could be applied today, don't you think? I think if more people worked for their provisions, they would be tired at the end of the day, with  no energy to get into mischief or drugs. Where's our work ethic in America?


In verses 6-10, Paul commands the Thessalonians in Jesus' name, to withdraw, remove, themselves from those who were unruly, walking disorderly. These were people who deliberately disobeyed what Paul had taught them. They were persistently practicing disobedience, therefore, Paul had warned the church earlier about these false teachers. Now it was time to dismiss the rebellous one from the fellowship in the church. This was in order that their influence would not lead the Thessalonians down the same path.

"Paul's purpose is to bring about repentance and salvation in the disobedient one, not to condemn them," stated David Guzik in his commentary.

Paul's instructions was for the church to not overlook or condone this activity of rebellion. Are we to do the same?

How is my walk? Is it obedience to God's Word or is it rebellious? Am I leading others down the right or wrong path?


Work til Jesus comes.

Stay obedient to God's Word, not disobedient, leading others on the right path.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


2 Thessalonians 3-Part 2
And we have confidence in the Lord concerning you, that you are doing and will continue to do what we command. And may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the steadfastness of Christ.   2 Thess. 3:4-5 NAS


The house we lived in for eight years had an unattached garage with a concret floor. I stored my teaching materials, books, and childrens' childhood stuff in cardboard boxes there. This garage had an attached laundry room, which may have made the difference. When I was going through the stuff in the garage before moving to another house, I found an unwanted surprise-mildew. It was black stuff that ate away the bottom of my boxes which were sitting on the floor. When I lifted those boxes, the bottom fell out. Rotten boxes. Contents in those boxes either had to be thrown away or treated. What a time consuming mess. Probably it happened because of the dark, damp, unventilated garage. Rarely was the door opened. This was a growing, undetected problem until we were getting ready to move.

"Like the silent undetected mildew, sexual impurity can eat away at the fiber of a congregation," said Charles Swindoll in his book Steadfast Christianity.

Paul warned the congregation at Thessalonica in his first letter to them, which is found in chapter two, the first seven verses. He says, "God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification."

Looking back at our key verse, Paul had confidence in these people, probably in their sexual purity. He was trusting them to do right before God.

Beware of impure thoughts that might be creaping into our minds like the mildew did my boxes. We need to always guard our minds. Don't grow accustomed to immorality presented in movies and television. Remain alert to Satan's tactics to cause us to stumble into sin.


In verse 5, Paul entreats the Lord to direct our hearts into love and endurance.
Swindoll said, "Steadfast hearts are harbored in a deep love for God. In reality, it is not the intensity of the storms washing over our lives that shipwrecks us, but the lack of intensity in our love for God. Our love for Him forms the sturdy mast and mainsail of our lives. As the mast effects the sail, so the depth of your love will determine the steadfastness of your soul. We may have different quarters, but we're all in the same boat."

How deep is my love for God? Will it remain through any storm of life?


Keep my thoughts pure so I do what is right.

Remain in love with Christ, developing a deeper love each day.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Keeping Promises

2 Thessalonians 3-Part 1
But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil.   2 Thess 3:3


Am I faithful in keeping my promises? One promise I can say I have kept is my marriage vows. So far, after 38 1/2 years of marriage, my husband and I have remained faithful to each other and to God. Not all people can say that though, which makes me sad for them. Nowadays, spouses leave when they get tired of the situation or other person. If this has happened to you, I am so sorry. But there is one who is faithful, that won't leave us and that is Jesus.
If we've been a Christian very long, we have experienced God's faithfulness to us. I certainly have. So I looked up the word to see what it meant in this passage.

Here it is in Thayer's Lexicon: faithful refers to God abiding by His promises.
Do I hear an amen or praise the Lord?

Lamentations 3:22-23 says, "It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness."

Do I hear you joining me as I sing that old hymn Great is Thy Faithfulness? Morning by morning new mercies I see, all I have needed Thy hands have provided, great is Thy faithfulness Lord unto me.

Yes, how faithful our God is! Glory to His name!  Even when I am not, He is.

God is faithful in regard to
*creation (Ps. 119:90)
*His promises (Deut. 7:9, 2 Cor. 1:18, Heb. 10:23)
*salvation (1 Thess. 5:24)
*temptation (1 Cor. 10:13)
*suffering (1 Peter 4:19)
*strengthen and protect from Satan (John 17:15, Eph. 6:16, 1 Thess. 3:5).
[Resource: The MacArthur Bible Commentary]

Am I faithful to keep my promises to Him? How about you? Here's where we use that should word again.

Liberty Bible Commentary says:
The faithfulness of God means here that He will support and keep from evil. The word keep (phylasso in Greek) means rather "guard." From evil, should rather be translated, "from the evil ONE," since the gender is masculine in the original (John 17:15).

So Paul is praying that Jesus will guard us from Satan. Jesus also prayed the same thing in John 17:15,
"I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil."

Sounds like my prayers for others should include asking the Father to guard a loved one from evil today. We know how active the evil is today, so that's a very good thing to do.


Let's look back at verses 1 and 2: Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you: And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all men have not faith.

Often we read of Paul asking churches to pray for his ministry. He wants the Word of God to be successful and accomplish its purpose, as it did when  the Thessalonians believed it and were saved. Paul, Timothy, and Silas were stewards of the Lord who preached His Word. It was their primary occupation in life. Paul asks for prayer for their safety in the work, and that they might be protected from evil men who opposed them.

Sounds like a good prayer request to me. Do I ask others to pray for me when I'm in a difficult situation? Not very often, I admit.

Jesus said that the world would hate us (John 17:14). People certainly did hate Jesus, which resulted in His death. They hated Paul, too. Think about how badly he was mistreated. Have people changed today? No, they still don't like to hear the truth and admit they are sinners in need of a Savior, just like in Jesus' day and Paul's day. Yes, you and I need all the prayer support we can get. Shall we SAP-stop and pray?

Lord Jesus, thank You for Your faithfulness and unfailing love for us, Your children. Please protect my sweet friends today from evil that surrounds them. Please bless them so their cup runs over with Your love.
In Your Name,


Be faithful to pray for God's protection from evil upon others, especially those in ministry.

Daily thank the Lord Jesus for His faithfulness to me.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Aggravating Little Ants

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 10
Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work.    2 Thess. 2:16-17


These last few weeks, I have been teaching my three year old granddaughter the song, The Ants Go Marching One by One. You know the song.  Little did I know that it would become a reality. We had little black ants marching in two rows around the house, in the yard, up the trees, everywhere.  Boy, did those little stinkers agrivate me. They'd craw up my lawn chair and get on me. They even had the gaul to come into my kitchen uninvited. I tell ya, those little agitatingthings can become a big thing. (Isn't that true in life?)

This continued all week. In the heat, I would go out spraying along the bottom and the rock ledge around my house, not once but up to three times a day. I almost got blisters pulling the trigger on the squirt bottle. But my efforts didn't eliminate the problem. Those ants marched on inspite of my killing some. More live, marching ants took the place of the dead ones. (Hopefully, the devil gets that descouraged about Christians.)

Well, it was time to get serious and call out the calvary, my exterminator. They came and attacked those critters. Ha, ha, we got 'em DEAD. So one more time, this morning,  I cleaned up dead ants in my kitchen. Hopefully, it will be a long time before that happens again. Whew! I'm glad that's over.

Now, there was one thing I noticed about these marching ants,  their method of marching was  not side by side, but behind each other, like an army. Maybe that's where we got the phrase "I got your back" came from. Do I pray faithfully for my loved ones and friends, supporting their backs from the enemy? Do I encourage them to stay faithful to Jesus? Paul did.

It is hard to comprehend that God, who is sinless, would love me, a sinner, who sins daily. But He loves us anyway, with an unfailing love, in spite of ourselves.
In comparing what the King James version says with the New American version, the phrase everlasting consolation, becomes eternal comfort.

Thayer's Lexicon gives these definitions of Greek words used for:
Hope means joyful and confident expectaion of eternal salvation. 
Grace is kindness by which God bestows favors even upon the ill-deserving, and grants to sinners the pardon of their offenses, and bids them accept of eternal salvation through Christ.
Comfort means to encourage, strengthen your hearts.
Stablish refers to establish, which is to strengthen, make firm; to render constant; confirm, one's mind.

These last two verses in chapter 2 is a brief prayer of Paul's for the Thessalonian believers as they go through the deepest and darkest valley of their lives. What does Paul ask the Father of our Lord Jesus? First, he asks God to comfort them, not that God circumnavigate the storms for them. Next, Paul prays that God strengthens them, not that He spares them. (Steadfast Christianity by Charles Swindoll)

I do have hope for my eternal life as God's grace secures me. However, sometimes I need some comfort and encouragement to strengthen my heart whenever I'm going through a difficult situation. Don't you?


I guess it's normal for me to want a smooth path to walk on instead of it being rocky. Also, I like to avoid storms, but sometimes they are unavoidable. In most cases, the most direct route to maturity is through the storms, not around them.

Isaiah 43:2 states, "When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, Nor will the flame burn you."

Did you notice the word through was used three times? God doesn't guarantee a life free of storms and no ants to agrivate, nor sunshine all the time. But He will be with us as we go through those hard circumstances. Even when little things as small as ants frustrate us.

Paul is asking for comfort and a strengthened heart in every good work and word. So let's march one after another, whispering encouraging words so we'll continue on this rocky path toward heaven. He is the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort (2 Cor. 1: 3-4).
Don't let the small things, like ants,  discourage us. March on for Jesus.


Encourage others, even in the little things.

Pray for God's love and grace to encourage others and myself.

Friday, July 15, 2011

A Zooming Boat

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 9 Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.        2 Thess. 2:15


We were riding in a small boat, which was driven by a stranger, in a foreign land. Fast must have been the only speed he knew, because we were skiming and zooming across the top of the water like a speed boat. Clouds were overhead, the wind was blowing strongly, water spraying my face.We had  waited out the storm earlier before getting into the boat. We all wanted so badly to make this short trip, that nothing would detour us. Our group of six was headed to an island for a picnic, surrounded by the beautiful, deep blue China Sea. It was planned to be a day of relaxation, swimming, and snorkling. I was scared. Why?  I am afraid of water and this water was definitely over my head surrounding me. Oh, we were wearing life jackets for safety, but that wasn't comforting. Others said comforting words in an effort to reassure me. All  I could do was  close my eyes, pray, and hang on. (It only took us about 10 minutes to reach our destination.)

If I had used my noggin (head) and not my feelings, I would have realized that God was with us. He wasn't going to let His missionaries, who were on board with us, drown from a boat accident right then. I didn't think those logical thoughts as the boat rocked and water sprayed on my face, zooming on top of the water.
Friend, I had to ride out the storm because there was no turning back. It was out of my control, too.

Obviously we made it safely to shore and back again later. We had a wonderful time while on the island (no rain or storm). I saw beautifully colored fish that I would never have seen if I had refused to get into the boat, or had I insisted that he driver turn around and take me back to shore. I'm so glad that I didn't miss out on such a fun time. Life can be like that, too.

In our scripture, Paul exhorts the Thessalonians to "stand firm and hold." Why?
* They were shaken from their composure and disturbed by some false information. (verse 2)
* They were being deceived. (verse 3)
* They were forgetting some of the teaching Paul had given them earlier. (verse 5)
* In the stormy winds of false teaching, they were being tossed about by the waves that slapped against their
* Shipwreck was imminent unless measures were taken to secure their faith.
* The exhortation was to batten down the hatches and ride out the storm.
* They were to get rid of the loose baggage on deck and tie down the main cargo below.
*They were not to jump ship in the face of the persecution that was washing over them in waves, but were to
   "stand firm."
*As deception rocked the boat and unsteadied their feet, they were to "hold to the tradition" taught them.
[Reference: Steadfast Christianity]

What rocks your boat? What do we do when the storms of life toss us around? Do I stand firm and hold onto Jesus with faith, trusting Him to see me through? Or do I want to jump ship? Do I react in a sinful or selfish way? What would Jesus have me do?

According to Thayer's Lexicon, the word stand means to hold fast, form; to persist, persevere in godliness
and hold means to hold fast, not to discard or let go; to keep carefully and faithfully.

There's the answer. I am to persevere in godliness and not let go of my faith, staying faithful to my Savior no matter what storm comes to rock my boat. What would it take for us to jump ship, turn away from Jesus and His teachings?


David Guzik Commentary tells us to:
stand fast because of our glorious destiny (the glory of our Lord Jesus, 2 Thess. 2:14). What do they stand fast to? God's Word, delivered both by the authoritative word of the apostles (by word) and the letters of the apostles (our epistle).
The Bible recognizes that traditions can be a dangerous feature of religious system (Matt. 15:2-3) or the traditions of man (Colossians 2:8). But Paul has in mind the apostolic traditions preserved for us in the record of the New Testament.
It is only this anchor of God's Word that can enable us to stand fast under the weigth of our present tribualtion, and the weight of our coming glory.

We know that Paul's teachings were Holy Spirit inspired, so we can believe it, hold onto it, and count on it.


Hold onto God's Word and don't let go. Keep on trusting and obeying our Savior Jesus Christ.

Stay in the boat when He wants me to and then He will say, "Peace, be still," to the wind and the waves.

Stand fast being persistent.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

What Possesses Me?

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 8
Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Thess. 2:14


What was the last thing you  bought, other than food? I can say the last thing I bought was digging toys for my grandchildren to use at the creek. Did it make me happy? Not right away, but I was happy later when I saw how much fun they had using the plastic shovels to dig and floating the boat at the creek.
Does it make me happy to get the possession of something? Usually, the answer is yes, temporarily.
That's what the word obtain means. Oh, I possess a lot of things-house, car, clothes, Bible, computer, books, the list would be never ending. But the question is, "What possesses me?" or "What is obtaining me?" Is it my Lord Jesus or something else? What do my thoughts dwell upon? What do I talk about most during the day? Do I allow His Spirit and His Word to possess me? It's a daily, hourly, and minute things, isn't it?

Liberty Bible Commentary says this:
The Greek word obtaining,  peripoiesis, refers generally to "obtaining" or "attaining" to something but more specifically and more technically in the Bible it can refer to God's creation of a people for himself. In the O.T. God made Israel a "people for his own possession." That same idea in the N.T. has been applied to both Jew and Gentiles as they are brought into the church which becomes a "people for God's own possession" (see 1 Thess. 5:9). The interpretation of the special use of this word may be supported by the fact that the next word, glory, does not have an article in Greek so that the phrase might be translated, "to the glorious obtaining." This would mean that the Lord Jesus is accomplishing God's intended salvation by His death on the cross.

Het, friend, we are a special people that are God's possession, His own possession. He owns me and you. He paid the price to purchase us through the salvation of Jesus' dying on the cross. What else?

"But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light,"
states 1 Peter 2:9.

So, with Jesus' obtaining, possessing me, I am His child; I am chosen; I am royalty; I am peculiar; I am praising Him. OOOOOOOEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!

Thank You Lord Jesus for choosing me. Help me to not disappoint You. Help me to glorify You today.


I like it when someone calls my name. Actually, when someone says my name, whether it be in a greeting or during our conversation it makes me feel important.
 Did you see the word called in our today's verse? It is the word lego in the Greek. It means to say, speak, to call by name. (Thayer's Lexicon)

In our verse, the calling of God correspoonds to the "choosing" of God in verse 13. Note that God's call comes through the preaching of the gospel. (Liberty Bible Commentary)

David Guzik said, "The call for salvation comes through the gospel, the gospel Paul preached (we preach Christ crucified, 1 Cor. 1:23) and the gospel that will enable us to the obtaining glory of Jesus. This awesome glory is the same glory John speaks of in 1 John 3:2."

Who is calling our name? Do I listen when God calls me? Do I hear Him speaking to me, or am I too busy with the worldly things surrounding me to hear? I answered the call to salvation in Jesus Christ. Have you? Then, the question is, am I answereing the call "through sanctification of the Spirit?"

"We can't see if a person is chosen, but we can see if they are sanctified. God's work of sanctification uses two great forces, the spirit and the belief in the truth. The Spirit of God and the Word of God are essentials to our sanctification. Those who claim to be "chosen" but lack evidence of sanctification (seperation from the world unto God) are on shaky ground," stated David Guzik.

In Jesus' prayer, found in John 17:17, He  says, "Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth."

How much time do I spend studying and memorizing the Word?


Allow the Holy Spirit to sanctify me, setting me apart from the world as a Christian.

Speak and act like a child of God.

Stay in the Word of God.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

I Love Cats!

301.  " I Love Cats!"                              July 13, 2011

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 7
But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.    2 Thess. 2:13


When I was young growing up on our farm, I had cats. I don't mean two cats, but gobs of cats. There was old Tiger, a gray tom cat, which I had forever. (Don't know why I called him that since he was gray and didn't look like a tiger.)
Anyway, there were several momma cats who always had kittens. My parents didn't seem to mind because we raised two chicken houses full of broilers to sell. Now for those of you who don't know, that meant you had chicken feed available, and lots of it, for mice to eat. And the mice population grew faster than cats, so you understand why we liked having cats on our farm. (Feed wasn't the only thing they would eat. They got in our house, too.)
So my cats were my friends. I would tame the young ones, pet and play with the mommas and Tiger. They even let me put dolls' dresses on them. Can you see why one of my favorite books was Wanda Gag's Millions of Cats ?
Do you believe me when I say I loved cats growing up, and still do? Now I  have only two cats. One was a stray named Tigger (orange with stripes this time) and Miss Kitty, who has kittens somewhere, but I haven't found them yet. Yes, I love cats. They are an affectionate animal, who lets ya hold 'em, pet 'em, play with 'em. As long as you keep feeding them, they will keep coming around sharing that love. (Update-she has 5 kittens and brought them to our house for me to feed.)

As I thought of my love for cats, I thought of how much more God loves you and me. Paul calls the Thessalonians "beloved of the Lord." So are we.

"The word beloved is in the perfect tense in Greek, agapao, emphasizing the certainty of the fact that God loves them," states Liberty Bible Commentary.

(I wonder if it is related to the agape love, which is the highest form of love.) I may have to dig deeper to find out, because my education isn't from a seminary, so I don't know the answer.

Shall I call you my beloved friend? Be encouraged, we are loved by God. I found some verses:
*Nothing can seperate us from the love of God. ( Romans 8:31-39)
*God will never leave us nor forsake us. (Heb. 13:5
*He is with us always, even to the end of the age. (Matt. 28:20)
*He's with us in our stumbling. (Ps. 37:24)
*He's with us in the darkest times in our life. (Ps. 23:4)
*He's with us even in our bitterness. (Ps. 73:21-23)

Oooooboy! That's lifing me up today! I am loved by the God of the universe! You are loved by the God of the universe!


Look back at verse 13. When did God choose you and me to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth? From the beginning, that's when He chose us.

Charles Swindoll says, in his book Steadfast Christianity:
God has chosen you for salvation; you're still in His family even though you may not feel like it. Second, He has called you. You didn't whistle for help. He did the calling. You are the result of His love, not vice versa. He is on your side. This instruction should produce such a confidence in the midst of suffering that your anxieties will be calmed.

It was before the foundation of the world when He chose us. He predestinated us, adopted us to be children of Jesus Christ, and it was according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, and He made us accepted in the beloved. (paraphrase of Ephesian 1:4-5)

Now if that doesn't get your clapper going, nothing will. Such grace!
Beloved friend, you and I are chosen to be God's children and we are loved as His children. Halleluah!


Linda is a beloved of the Lord. (Put your name in that sentence.)

Rejoice with me.

Thank you Jesus for providing our salvation before we were born and before you created anything.

Praise His holy name!!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Truth or Consequences

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 6
And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrightousness.
2 Thess. 2:11-12


If you are old enough, you will remember the television show named Truth or Consequences. Gary Moore was the host. There was a panel of three or four people who judged three guests who had a given senerio. Among these three were two who tried to convince the panel that they were telling the truth about who they were, only pretending to be the star, actually telling lies. The star person was the only one who was telling the truth, either about themselves and  what happened to them. Thus, the panel of judges had to decide which person was telling the truth. Of course, we at home would try to guess, too. In a nutshell, we were all deceived or believed a delusion.

Paul is saying there will come a time when God will allow those who received not the love of the truth and be saved, to believe the lies, love sin rather than the gospel truth. They will think the Antichrist is actually telling the truth, but in reality, he won't be.

I had to look up the word delusion. According to Webster's Dictionary, it is a false belief. According to Thayer's Lexicon, it means wandering; a straying about, whereby one, led astray from the right way, roams hither and thither; error, wrong opinions relative to morals or religion.

David Guzik said, "In the end, the Antichrist is only God's messenger. God has judgment to bring, and He will send...a strong delusion through the Antichrist. God won't force this delusion on anyone, but those who don't receive the love of the truth will receive this strong delusion. God sends them the lie. This isn't just any lie, but the lie that's enthralled the human race since Adam. This is the lie that God is not God and we can be gods."  (my emphasis)

So you may ask, like me, what is the good in all of this? I believe Christians, the Church,  will not be here during this time. That we will be raptured out of this world. Even though spiritual and moral darkness will be on the earth during the man of lawlessness's reign, there will be a day when the Light of the World will return. (see Romans 1)

As Charles Swindoll said, "Tyranny will be dethroned...darkness dispelled...and the glory of the Lord will bathe the earth in goodness, beauty, and truth"

It is a relief and a time for gratitude. We followers and believers in Christ will experience a joyful ride up to eternity.


As verse 12 says, these people who follow the Antichrist will be condemned, too. Their fate will be sealed because they follow Satan and his counterfeit Christ. They will be left to the consequences of their sin.

David Guzik said, "As God gives rebellious man the lie he desires, it isn't out of His generosity. Instead, it shows God's judgment on those who reject the truth. As Romans 1 points out, this God giving man up to the depravity of his heart, his pleasure in unrighteousness."

To me, it sounds like all He has to do for this to happen is God removes His Holy Spirit. These people will already be in a sinful state, depravity.Whether they set themselves up as gods or set the Antichrist up as god, either way, they are rejecting the Jesus Christ as The Way, The Truth, and The Life, and as the only one Savior.

Beware if I have pleasure in unrighteousness. Let us guard our minds, our souls dear friend, filling us with God's Word and loving Spirit.

Liberty Bible Commentary states:
The Greek word eudokeo, for pleasure in unrighteousness,  means to "make a decision about what is right." The decision was their; they decided for unrighteousness rather than righteousness and God. The result is that they are condemned, lost!


Stay at the feet of Jesus, in His Word, so I know what the turth is and not have to pay the consequences.

Help others know The Truth.

Monday, July 11, 2011

One Word, One Breath

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 5
And then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved.   2 Thess. 2:8-10


One word. How many times has one word encouraged us, cut out our heart, or changed our lives?
Only one word is needed to lift us up-hello, beautiful, yummy, sweet, honey, sweetheart, good, forgive, alive, sorry, help, awesome, love; only one word can cut us to the quick-stop, hate, aweful, mean, bad, evil, get, no, never, dead, divorce, seperate; only one word can change our life-bye, leave, stay, go, come, love, yes, always, forever, gone. And the list could go on.

Do you remember back in Genesis when God spoke the words and it happened, it was, there was, there were? He spoke the worlds into existence out of nothing? That's how He created it all. He breathed life into Adam. He breathed life into me three times. The first was when I was born physically, the second was my rebirth spiritually, and the third was after my surgery almost 10 years ago when I stopped breathing. Thank You Lord, bless Your Holy Name!!!!

Psalm 150:6 says, "Let every thing that hath breath praise the Lord. Praise ye the Lord."

How often do I give praise to  the Lord? Is it only on Sundays? Is it only in the morning? Is it only in the good times and easy times that I praise Him? Or do I praise Him in the hard times, during the trials, amidst the dry spells, during pain?

"So during the end times, God will merely breathe and His archenemy will be cast into oblivion," stated Charles Swindoll in his book Steadfast Christianity 

You know, God has the power to slay people with the His breath. He doesn't even have to say one word. Our key Scripture says that He will destroy the Antichrist and Satan that way; one day, poof, and they're in the Lake of Fire forever.

Praise and glory to my God and Savior, forever!!!!!!!!


It's sad that one man, the Antichrist, will deceive many people because of his power, signs and false wonder. They will not receive the love of the truth, Jesus Christ,  and be saved. The Antichrist will have his followers, believers, lost and perishing ones.

In Liberty Bible Commentary, it says:
The King James version uses the word received in verse 10. It's the Greek word dechomai, which is a vivid attitude indicator; it means "to welcome" as one welcomes a guest he wishes to entertain. A better translation of the verse has "because they refused to love the turth and so be saved."

That's why they will perish. Sad. I need to keep telling the truth so loved ones will not be deceived.
I want to keep on loving the truth. I pray that you will too. Jesus the The Way, The Truth, The Life.


Praise the Lord always, rejoice evermore.

Keep on loving The Truth, Jesus.


Friday, July 8, 2011

Caged Animals

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 4
And you know what restrains him now, so that in his time he may be revealed. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only he who now restrains will do so until he is taken out of the way.    2 Thessalonians 2:6-7 NAS


Last week we took our grandchildren to a drive through safari in our local area. I must say, the Lord had a sense of humor when He created some animals, like the baboon's hairdo, long legged camels and emus, stripes on tigers and zebras, the sound made by the zebras, rhino's big and unbalanced head with horns, a sleeping sloth with its head between its legs, long haired yak, the alligator's big mouth, and the Texas longhorn cattle, just to name a few. Some of the animals were allowed to roam freely on the property while others were in cages. To those, the cage was their home, where they ate, slept, and lived. These animals were restrained from roaming around, which would have resulted in attacking and killing other animals, such as the lions, tigers, and wolves. We know those are hunters.
Satan is like a caged animal, restrained from doing his attacking. One day he will be let out, unrestrained.

Charles Swindoll, in his book, Steadfast Christianity, says:
There will come a time when the Restrainer is taken out of the way and lawlessness runs wild and rampant in the streets. Ours is a day of grace in which sin, to the large degree, is restrained. It is a day when God does not deal directly with human sin. However, there will come a time when He will step on the scene to deal definitively with sin. And that will be a time of great destruction.

Did you notice the phrase "in his time" in our verse?  I like to do things on my own time table, have my own plans, going and doing as I wish. Actually, though, when it comes right down to it, God is in control of all things. He is Sovereign, not me. When you believe that, there is peace.

"The reason for the restraint was so that Antichrist would be revealed at God's appointed time and no sooner, just as was Christ, because God controls Satan," stated The MacArthur Bible Commentary.

We don't know who will be the Antichrist, nor when his time will come, so I need to be ready always. I need to help others get ready, too. (Since I believe in the Rapture, I believe Christians will not be here during this time of the release of the Antichrist.)


Do you recall the story of Noah? He's the one who built the giant ark so his family and all animals could be saved from the flood covering the whole earth.

Swindoll tells us:
In Genesis 6:3, the Holy Spirit is represented as striving with wicked mankind during the days of Noah, when the Lord said, "My Spirit shall not strive with man forever." When man's wickedness exhausted God's long-suffering mercy, His wrath spilled over the earth in judgment. the situation of the end times seems to parallel the days of Noah (Matt. 24:37-39). Today, the Holy Spirit restrains man's lawlessness chiefly through the Chruch (John 16:7-11). Because of His presence in us, we function as the light of the world and the salt of the earth (Matt. 5:13-16). When the Church is "gathered together" and taken to be with Christ in the air, the salt and light will be withdrawn. Then every vestige of goodness will decay; every remnant of truth, unravel. It is at that time when the man of lawlessness will take center stage.

The spirit of lawlessness is already in our society because Satan is here inticing men to sin, along with our sin nature. It was there in the time of the Thessalonians, too. Have you thought, along with me, that our world can't get any worse than it already is? Well it can and will.

"The one who wants to take the place reserved for Jesus, God's Son and our Savior, opposes God. Satan  wants to be "The God of the universe," but he never will  be.

"The spirit of such a man is already in operation (1John 2:18), but the man who fullly embodies that spirit has not come, according to The MacArthur Bible Commentary.

Dear friend, strive to live a holy and righteous live. Our God is still on His throne, ruling the universe, and He always will. Revelation 19 tells us the One called "Faithful" and "True" will be riding a white horse judging and making war. His name is "The Word of God," and "King of Kings, and Lord of Lords." We will gather together unto the supper of the great God.

Hallejuah! The time is coming when all shall see Him as He is. And the Devil will be cast into the bottomless pit and shut up, in Rev. 20.
Praise the Lord Jesus and God our Father!


Don't join in with those who are lawless and living a sinful lifestyle, but stay close to the One who is merciful and pure.

Trust in the One who has time and everyone in His control.

Stay seated at the feet of my Lord Jesus.

Thursday, July 7, 2011


2 Thessalonians 2-Part 3                
Do you not remember that while I was  still with you, I was telling you these things?  (NAS)


This past week, I got together with several family members. My sister and two of her children were here, so we recollected things that happened and things we did while kids at home. I hadn't seen the girls in 14 years since Mom passed away. It had been about 8 years since I had been with my sister. Nancy was like a second mother to me. She is 10 years older than I am. So while Mom worked outside the home, Nancy watched over mefrom babyhood to childhood.
She recalled taking me to the creek and I played with a small pool of water while she and her neighborhood friends swam. As the years went by, we camped out on the creek, which was owned by our grandfather. She was always looking out for me. One time while camping, nature called, and we both went up in the woods. Well, we didn't stay long, for there was a big black snake living where we went. Nancy left her hat hanging on a branch there, due to our speedy exit. Some guys killed the snake and retreved her hat. Oh my, such fun recollecting our memories. It was a fantastic time!
You probably have some adventures you could share, right?

Paul used the word remember in our verse.
According to Thayer's Dictionary, remember means to exercise memory, recollect; to rehearse; make mention, be mindful.
I wondered if my pronounciation of the word recollect, was a dialect or if it was correct, but the Webster's Dictionary shows it: rek"e-lekt'. So I was correct in my recollect :)  It isn't re-collect, so I was right.

Paul is asking the Thessalonians to refer back to the preaching he did while with them.

Liberty Bible Commentary says it this way, "Two grammatical items in the Greek make the meaning clear, 'You surely recall, do you not, that during my stay, I told you this repeatedly.' "


The King James Bible says verse 5 this way: Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

Notice the phrase "I told you."  How many times have I heard or said that in our lifetime? Moms say it to their children and as a child, I'm sure I heard it said to me.
The MacArthur Bible Commentary states:
The imperfect tense is used, indicating repeated action in past time. Apparently, Paul on numerous occasions had taught the Thessalonians the details of God's future plans. Here, he reminded them of the issues which proved the false teachers wrong about the Day of the Lord. Paul had before told them that the revealing of the Antichrist preceded the Day of the Lord; since he had not yet been revealed, they could not possibly be in that day.

Remember, the Thessalonians thought they had missed out on the Rapture of the church, described in
1 Thessalonians 4:13, John 14:1-3.

Friend, we haven't missed anything either. Are you looking forward to that day? I am. I will have a first-class ticket on that day. Jesus told us some things would occur before the Rapture. Do I recollect His Word so I know?


Keep recollecting Bible verses so I don't forget them and my faith wavers.

Remember that Jesus is coming to take His Bride home one day. As believers, you and I are a part of it.

Woohoo! Getin' ready to meet our Lord Jesus

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Goin' Home

Well, the time has come for my daughter and her family to head back home. We cramed so many activities and made memories in one week. Now we can rest and remember. These are tears of joy. They will be on the road going home. We are always on the road home, our heavenly home.
First, they will stop off in Little Rock to visit other grandparents, who are flying in from Texas,  for a day. It is easier to let them go so they too can see these precious ones we both love.
Got to go give kisses and hugs and grab Kleenexes.

See ya'll tomorrow for our study.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


My cup overflows with blessings.
I am enjoying my grandchildren's  visit.
Please come back Thursday, July 7 and we will resume our study in 2 Thessalonians.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 states, "Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."

Thank You Jesus for life, family, salvation, love, forgiveness.

In His Name,

Monday, July 4, 2011


Greetings Dear Friends,

Happy Independence Day!

I was thinking about the freedoms I enjoy today. As an American, the Constitution guarantees me many freedoms. We all know them. I won't go into that. Well, I got to wondering what the word freedom meant, so I looked it up.

Webster's Dictionary defines freedom as the state of being free; personal liberty or national independence.
The word free has several meanings: enjoying personal liberty and not enslaved; unrestrained; obtained without cost-given without charge. My dictionary gave 11 definitions for this word, which I will not bore you with. 

The freedoms I enjoy as an American came at a high cost to others. We have read about those who fought and died for our independence as a nation, so many wars, but she has survived. So many lives given for us.

So it is as a Christian. I am free from the penalty of sin, which means I don't have to pay for them. My sins were paid for by another-Jesus Christ. My salvation came at a high cost, the death of a sinless man, who did not deserve to have nails in His hands and feet in order to hang on a cross. He did it because He loves me. He did it because He loves you, dear friend. Have you asked Him to forgive you of your sins that put Him on that cross? I have. How wonderful is the freedom I enjoy now that I am free from the penalty of my sins!

Here are a few scriptures I found using the word free:
"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." (John 8: 32)

"If the Son shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." (John 8:36)

"Being made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness." (Rom. 6:18)

"But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." (Rom. 6:22-23)

"For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death."
(Rom. 8:2)

"Stand fast therefore in the liberty Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage." (Galatians 5:1)

"As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God."
(1 Peter 2:16)

I thank God for my nation in which I live and enjoy many freedoms.
I thank my God for the freedom from the penalty of my sins through Jesus. 
How about you dear friend? Will you enjoy your freedom today?

If you will excuss me for a few days, I will be having fun with my grandchildren from Rhode Island. I only get to see them once a year. Yeah, I'm doing the grandma thing! So come back on July 7th and we will resume our study in 2 Thessalonians.

Meanwhile, enjoy your freedoms and have a safe fourth of July!

A Sister in Christ,

Friday, July 1, 2011

What's in a Name?

293.  "What's in a Name?"                        July 1, 2011

2 Thessalonians 2-Part 2
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition. Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.          2 Thess. 2:3-4


Since I don't know your name, I will tell you mine. It is Linda. I like that name a lot better than what my mother had considered naming me-Pernissy Millar. (It's ok to join me in a laugh.) Can you imagine being called either one of those names? Having your teacher call your name on the morning roll-Pernissy? Ooooh! Not I. So I asked Mom why was she considering those names for me. She told me those two names were the middle names of my two grandmothers. (Both passed away  months before I was born.) I can see the significance of it, but I sure am glad Mom changed her mind! Whew! That was close! My family gets a good laugh whenever this is told.
Have you seen those racks at the stores that contain many names, usually on cards, which explain the meaning of your name? Often times they are in bookstores, novelty shops, tourists boutiques. Well, I found a card with my name and the meaning of it. (Never have found Pernissy or Millar.) Linda means "Pretty One" or "Beautiful." Now you can see the second reason why I'm happy that is my name. However, very few times have I had anyone tell me that I'm pretty or beautiful. Oh well, I hope that I'm prettier on the inside than the outside.But then, life isn't about me, it's about serving Jesus.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 a states, "He hath made every thing beautiful in his time."

Yes, dear friend, you too are beautiful. Let no one tell you otherwise. Our Father God says so. And He doesn't lie!

All right, back to the Word. Speaking of names, as I read various comments on this chapter, I noticed that there were many names for Satan during this up-coming time. Here's what I found:
*man of sin
*man of lawlessness
*the Antichrist (1 John 2 & 4)
*prince who is to come (Dan. 9:26)
*the little horn (Dan. 7:8)
*the beast (Rev. 13:2-10, 18)
*son of perdition
*deceiver (2 John 7)
*beast out of the sea (Rev. 13:1)
I'm sure there are others that I haven't mentioned.

What's in a name? In Old Testament times, the parents used to name children according to the meanings of a name. The MacAruthur Bible Commentary says, "The key to identifying the event is to identify the main person, which Paul does, calling him the 'man of sin.' "  I found no difference of opinion on this. I think the Bible is pretty clear.

Well, we will have a new name in glory according to Revelation 2:18. Do you recall that at Antioch the followers of Jesus were called Christians? It's found in Acts 11:26. That's the most important name for me to be called, "Christian." How about you?
Less I give too much focus to Satan, there are lots of names for our Lord Jesus, in the Old and New Testament. In fact, there have been books written about them and their meanings.  As I pray, I still call Him " Jehovah, the Great I Am, Savior, Messiah, Jehovah Jireh." The list is endless. Most of all His name is Wonderful. That's who Jesus is to me-Wonderful.

What does your name mean? Anyone want to share? Come on, if I can share mine,surely you can share yours.

Well, at any rate, let us be warned that Satan will oppose God as he always has.

Liberty Bible Commentary says this: 
Opposeth is in present tense in Greek and implies continued, dertermined, and planned opposition to god. It's a common word for the opposing sides in a battle. Exalteth himself shows his extreme pride; he puts himself over everything considered as a god or an object of worship ans it were, seats himself in the Temple of God.


Did you notice the phrase "falling away?" Paul is saying that before the Day of the Lord begins this will occur.
Falling away, (apostasia in Greek), is our sourse of the English word "apostasy." It means literally "standing away from" or "departure." (Liberty Bible Commentary)

So this is telling us that there will be a departure from the faith. Its the final apostasy led by the man of sin, the son of perdition.
Revealed (apokalypto in Greek) shows that he exists prior to the time of this revelation or appearance. I John 2:18 states that there were already many antichrists, in the sense of people who are against Christ, existing today.It isn't certain who this person will be; but the identification of the Man of Sin with the coming Antichrist of Revelation is the most logical conclusion. He is the Antichrist, the false christ who will force himself and his kingdom upon the world one day (Rev. 13:15-17).
[Resource: Liberty Bible Commentary]

It is my prayer that you and I will not fall away, that we will remain close followers of Christ, the One and Only God to be worshiped. Are we helping others to remain faithful and to grow in that faith?


Be alert to false doctrines and false leaders, always on the lookout, watching and listening.

Stay at the feet of my Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Remain in the Word of God.

Thank You Lord for the new name You have given me, Christian.