For as the lightning flashes and lights up the sky from one side to the other, so will the Son of Man be in his day. Luke 17:24
But for you who fear My name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings. Malachi 4:2

But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ . . . Galatians 6:14
For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 1 Corinthians 2:2
Let the motto upon your whole ministry be - "Christ is All!" - Mather

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Christ Is All In The Word!

Spurgeon said:
God’s Word honors His dear Son.

I am sure I shall touch one string in your hearts when I say, if the preacher shall discourse of Christ, — if he shall ring the silver bell of the Saviour’s precious name,

and lift up His cross,

and tell you all the power of His blood,

the love of His heart,

the shame of His death,

the glory of His resurrection,

the prevalence of His plea before the throne,

and the certainty of His ultimate victory over all His foes,

your lips will seem as though you had some dainty on your palate, and you will go home, and say:

"The King himself came near To feast his saints today."
Charles Spurgeon, The Sweetness Of God's Word

Friday, December 30, 2011

Christ Is All When Your Husband Is Killed By Terrorists

An article by John Piper:
On Sunday, September 8, 2002 John Piper preached from Romans 8:35-36 with a focus on the commemoration of the calamity of 9/11.

"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.’"

He argued that Jesus Christ is mightily loving his people with omnipotent, moment-by-moment love that does not always rescue us from calamity but preserves for everlasting joy in his presence even through suffering and death.

After the exposition, he said, "Let’s let Lisa Beamer bear witness to this sovereign love. Her husband Todd was on flight 93 that went down in Pennsylvania. He was the one who said, ‘Let’s Roll.’ He left behind Lisa and three small children (one born last January). I have found at least ten lessons from Lisa mostly in her own words."

What follows are the ten "Lessons from Lisa" that he gave his people as an extended application and embodiment of Romans 8:35.

1. Embracing the sovereignty of God brings strength and hope.

Lisa: "God knew the terrible choices the terrorists would make and that Todd Beamer would die as a result. He knew my children would be left without a father and me without a husband . . . Yet in his sovereignty and in his perspective on the big picture, he knew it was better to allow the events to unfold as they did rather than redirect Todd’s plans to avoid death. . . . I can’t see all the reasons he might have allowed this when I know he could have stopped it . . . I don’t like how his plan looks from my perspective right now., but knowing that he loves me and can see the world from start to finish helps me say, ‘It’s OK.’" (Modern Reformation, 24-25)

"If we believe wholeheartedly, each moment, that our destiny rests in the hands of Jesus Christ – the one with ultimate love and ultimate power – what do we have to be concerned about? Of course, our humanity clouds this truth many times but hanging on to glimpses of it keeps everything in perspective." (Modern Reformation, 31)

2. Don’t presume to know better than God how to run the world. It is pride.

Lisa: "My faith wasn’t rooted in governments, religion, tall buildings, or frail people. Instead, my faith and my security were in God. A thought struck me. Who are you to question God and say that you have a better plan than He does? You don’t have the same wisdom and knowledge that He has, or the understanding of the big picture." (World, 25)

"We also aren’t privy to the perspective he has and shouldn’t claim to know better than he does what should happen and what shouldn’t. . . . Faith means that, regardless of circumstances, we take him at his word that he loves us and will bring us to a good result if we just trust and obey him. Obviously, the ramifications of this understanding have been tremendous for me since 9/11." (Modern Reformation, 25)

3. God has a good purpose in all the hard things that happen to his people.

"God’s sovereignty has been made clear to me. When I am tempted to become angry and ask ‘What if?’ and , ‘Why us?’ God says, ‘I knew on September 10, and I could have stopped it, but I have a plan for greater good than you can ever imagine.’ I don’t know God’s plan, and honestly, right now I don’t like it very much. But I trust that He is true to His promise in Romans 8:28: ‘We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him.’ My only responsibility is to love God. He’ll work out the rest." (Decision, 8). Beneath her signature Lisa writes Genesis 50:20, "As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good." (Modern Reformation, 30)

4. Death and suffering press in on us the perspective of eternity.

Lisa: "September 11 has shown me the reality of eternity in a dynamic way these past few months. When I’m overwhelmed with sadness at what I’ve lost in this life, He is quick to give me His eternal perspective. ‘Lisa, this life is just a blip on the radar screen compared to your future with Me in heaven,’ He says. ‘The best thing that you can imagine on earth is garbage compared to what awaits you.’" (Decision, 8)

5. God’s distribution of suffering is not equal, and one hard thing may prepare for another.

When Lisa was 15 her father suffered an aneurysm at work and died the next morning in the hospital. Lisa: "When my father died, faith wasn’t so easy anymore. . . . I spent five years asking why, expressing my anger saying it’s not fair, before God helped me realize that he is who he is all the time – in good circumstances and bad. He is all-powerful and all-loving, but that doesn’t mean that as a citizen of this fallen world he protects us from every ‘bad’ event." (Modern Reformation, 25)

What a witness to God’s goodness and sovereignty the world would be missing today if God had not prepared Lisa Beamer for this loss by the death of her dad!

6. God’s love takes care of us right now in our suffering, not just later.

Lisa: "He knows that I am a hurting and in need right now. Every day He provides encouragement and resources just for me. Little things show me that He is with me: a Scripture with just the words I need to hear, a call from a friend when I feel lonely, help with a task that I can’t do alone, or a hug and ‘I love you’ from one of my children. God’s love is truly sufficient to meet any need that I have." (Decision, 8-9)

7. Calamity calls for quick practical love like meals and baby sitting.

Lisa: "The picture of the church as the hands and feet of Christ, with each person having a special gift, has been well portrayed to me these last months. In the beginning, it was immediate and practical help I needed – meals, child care, managing phone calls, and mail. Now that we’re out of the crisis mode it is rebuilding help I need – counseling , encouragement, prayer." (Modern Reformation, 28)

8. Quiet, confidence in God’s power and goodness through suffering create occasions for witness.

Marilee Melvin said of Lisa, "Her disarming quiet confidence in God’s purposes must be the reason Larry King has had her on his show eleven times." (Modern Reformation, 30)

9. Trusting in God’s sovereign care in all circumstances frees you from greed and releases love for others.

Money started to flow in to Lisa Beamer. Some letters were simply addressed, Lisa Beamer, New Jersey, and got to her. Lisa: "I didn’t feel comfortable keeping this for ourselves when there were many unknown families who should share." So she started the Todd M. Beamer Foundation to assist children who lost a parent in the 9/11 calamity. (Modern Reformation, 30)

Her freedom for others comes out in another way: "My family and I mourned the loss of Todd deeply that day . . . and we still do. But because we have a hope in the Lord, we know beyond a doubt that one day we will see Todd again. I hurt for the people who don’t have that same hope, and I pray that they will see something in our family that will encourage them to trust in the Lord." (World, 26)

Lisa’s way of encouraging people to trust in the Lord is sometimes so straightforward that Newsweek magazine called it "stern and even a little grim." She wrote in her memoir, "You think you deserve a happy life and get angry when it doesn’t always happen like that. In fact you are a sinner and deserve only death. The fact that God has offered you hope of eternal life is amazing! You should be overwhelmed with joy and gratitude." (Newsweek, 42)

10. Without God the world is hopeless.

With hundreds of others she attended the memorial service in Shanksville, PA at the crash site where her husband died. The Christ-exalting memorial service for Todd had been on Sunday, the day before, and had strengthened her. "On Monday," she said, "as I listened to the well-intentioned speakers, who were doing their best to comfort but with little if any direct reference to the power of God to sustain us. I felt I was sliding helplessly down a high mountain into a deep crevasse. As much as I appreciated the kindness of the wonderful people who tried to encourage us, that afternoon was actually one of the lowest points in my grieving. It wasn’t the people, or event, or the place. Instead, it struck me how hopeless the world is when God is factored out of the equation." (World, 26)

So, together with Lisa Beamer and the apostle Paul and Jesus Christ himself, I plead with you, Don’t factor God out of your life, or Jesus Christ who died and rose and reigns and intercedes for all who trust him, that we might have eternal joy with him in the presence of God.

The quotes are from:

Let’s Roll [excerpts from her book], World, Vol. 17, No. 31, August 17, 2002, pp. 20-28.

Lisa Beamer, "The Hope I Know," Decision, Vol. 43, No. 9, September, 2002, pp. 6-9.

Ann Henderson Hart, "Finding Hope Beyond the Ruins: An Interview with Lisa Beamer," Modern Reformation, Vol. 11, No. 5, September/October, 2002, pp. 24-31.

Evan Thomas, "Their Faith and Their Fears," Newsweek, September 11, 2002, pp. 36-48.
John Piper, Lessons From Lisa

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

"That's My King!" In Psalm 119!

My King's way is blameless because He always walked in the law of the LORD!
He sought God with His whole heart and never did anything wrong!
His way is steadfast!
His eyes were fixed on God's commandments!
He had an upright heart full of praise to His God!
He kept His way pure by guarding it according to God's Word!
He stored up God's Word in His heart so that He wouldn't fall into any sin!
He fills the heart with more delight than the joys of owning all the riches of this world!
He's so great that people daydream about Him all day long and even into the night watches!
He deals bountifully with all His servants!
He opens blind eyes to see the truth!
He's the most wonderful thing contained in all of the Word of God!
He's so attractive that He consumes His people with unquenchable longing at all times!

That's my King! I wonder if you're consumed with unquenchable longing for Him today?!

He's our delight and counselor!
He gives life!
He chose the way of faithfulness!
If you cling to Him you will not be put to shame!
He enlarges hearts!
He teaches us all we need to know to be saved, safe, and satisfied!
He gives understanding!
He turns us away from selfish gain!
He's priceless!
He's good!
He's full of steadfast love and salvation!
He's our comfort in affliction!
He was seized by the hot indignation of His Father on the cross because He was made the wicked one, though He knew no wickedness!
He's our song, and the joy of all our desiring!

That's my King!

He's our portion!
He's worthy of praise at midnight and all the time!
The earth is full of His steadfast love!
It's good for us to suffer and be afflicted in this life so that we might know Him better!
He's more precious than thousands of pieces of gold and silver!
His mercy comes to us so that we might live!
He's the supreme longing of every holy, happy eye!
His word is forever and firmly fixed in the heavens!
His faithfulness endures to all generations!
His perfection is limitless!
He's exceedingly broad in beauty, bounty, and blessing!

That's my King! Do you know Him today?!

He's our meditations all the day!
He makes us wiser than all our enemies!
He's ever with us and never leaves us alone!
He's sweeter than honey!
He's a lamp to our feet!
He's a light to our path!
He's our heritage forever!
He's the joy of our hearts!
He's our hiding place!
He's our shield!
He holds us up so that we may be safe!
He's more lovely than gold, more precious than fine gold!

That's my King!

He's wonderful!
He gives light!
He imparts understanding to the simple!
Hearts and mouths pant for Him and His glory!
He conquered all sin!
He redeems us from man's oppression!
He's just!
He's true!
He's from forever, and He has no end!
He's the Redeemer!
His mercy is great!
He causes hearts to stand in awe of everything about Him!
He moves us to rejoice in Him!
He's the great peacemaker and the only peace giver between God and man!
He's unfathomable, unconquerable, unshakable, and unforgettable all at the same time!

That's my King! That's my King!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Jesus: The Wonderful One!

Roy Lessin writes:
He is greater than any ruler . . .
mightier than any warrior . . .
nobler than any king . . .
wiser than any sage . . .
bigger than any kingdom . . .
better than any crown . . .
lovelier than any name . . .
worthy of worship . . .
deserving of praise.
Amen and Amen!

Friday, December 23, 2011

"That's My King!" In The Gospel Of John!

My King was in the beginning!
There never was a time when my King was not!
He always was, and He always will be!
He's the Word!
He's the Word with God!
He's the Word Who is God!
Through Him all things were made that were made!
Without Him nothing was made that was made!
And if you've got Him on your side then you've got it made!

That's my King!

He's the life that is the light of men!
He shines in the darkness, and the darkness cannot overcome Him!
He's the true light that enlightens everyone!
He made the world!
He came to His own, but His own did not receive Him!
But to those who do receive Him, who believe in His name, He gives the right to become children of God!
He's the Word that became flesh and dwelt among us!
He's glorious!
He's the only Son from the Father!
He's full of grace and truth!
He brought us grace and truth!
His fullness of grace overflows to us!
He makes God known to us!

That's my King! Do you know Him?!

He's LORD Whose way had to be made straight!
None of us are worthy to untie His shoe strings!
He's the Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world!
He ranks before all of us because He was before all of us!
The Holy Spirit of God remains on Him!
He baptizes with the Holy Spirit!
He's the Son of God!
He's the Messiah!
He's the good thing that came out of Nazareth! Come and see Him! Come and see Him today!

That's my King!

He's the King of Israel!
He opens heaven so that sinners can be led back to God!
He turned water into wine and kept the best for last!
He cleansed the temple with a whip of cords and zeal for God's house consumed Him!
He Himself is God's temple and zeal for Him ought to consume us!

Are you consumed with zeal for my King today?!

He's the temple that was destroyed and raised up in three days!
He knows all people – their thoughts, motives, and inner feelings – He knows everything!
Whoever believes in my King has eternal life!
Whoever does not believe in my King is condemned already!
He's the only begotten Son!
He's the heavenly Bridegroom – the most loving, beautiful, understanding, selfless, satisfying Spouse in the universe!
He must increase, and we all must decrease!
He comes from above!
He's above all!
He speaks the words of God!
He's loved by the Father Who has given all things into His hand!
Whoever does not obey Him shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him!

That's my King! I wonder if you are obeying my King today?!

He's the greatest gift of God to His people!
He's the living water that was poured out for the healing of the nations!
He's the Savior of the world!
He healed the lame!
He's always working for the glory of God and the good of His people!
He does nothing of His own accord, but only what He sees the Father doing!
He gives life to whom He will!
All judgment has been given to Him!
He must be honored just as the Father is honored!
Whoever doesn't honor Him, doesn't honor the Father Who sent Him!
Belief in His word brings eternal life and passage from death to life!
He commands the dead, and they hear Him and obey!
He came in His Father's name!

That's my King!

He fed 5,000 people with five loaves of bread and two fish!
He walked on water!
He gives eternal life!
He's the true bread from heaven!
He's the bread of life!
He will not lose anything His Father has given Him, but will raise them up on the last day!
He's the living bread that came down from heaven!
Whoever eats Him will live forever!
He's marvelous!
He's the Prophet!
He's the Christ!
He's the light of the world!
He's not of this world!
He's the great “I AM” in human flesh!
He makes the blind to see!
Never since the world began has there been anyone like Him!
He's the door of the sheep!
He's the good shepherd!
He laid down His life for the sheep!
He's one with the Father!
He's the Resurrection and the Life!
Whoever believes in Him, though he dies, yet shall he live!
And everyone who lives and believes in Him shall never die!

Do believe this about my King today?!

He wept!
He loves like no other!
He raises the dead!
He's worthy for us to fall on our knees and spend all the money and resources that we've ever owned on Him!
He humbled Himself to wash the dirty feet of His disciples!
He's gone to prepare a place for us!
He's the way, the truth, and the life, and no one comes to the Father except through Him!
If you've seen Him, then you've seen the Father!
He's in the Father, and the Father's in Him!
He's the true Vine!
He's overcome the world!
He was denied three times by one of His closest disciples!
His Kingdom is not of this world!
He's the King of the Jews!
He's guiltless!
He's blameless!
He's sinless!
But they crucified Him anyway!
He honored His mother to the very end!
He finished all that was needed for redemption in His death on the cross!
He rose up from the grave!
He's the Lord and God of all the universe!

Have you bowed down to Him as your Lord and God today?!

That's my King!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

"That's My King!" In The Book Of 2 Corinthians!

My King Jesus gives grace and peace like no other!
He suffered so that we might be abundantly comforted!
He is the yes and amen of every one of God's very great and precious promises to us!
In Him, God always leads us in triumphant procession!
He is the sweet smelling aroma of life to God among those who are being saved!
In Him the veil that blinds people's eyes to the truth about God is totally taken away!
He's glorious!
He's the image of God!
He's Lord!
In His face the light of the knowledge of the glory of God shines forth!

That's my King! Has His light shone forth in your hearts today?!

On that cross He was afflicted in every way and crushed so that we might be free from affliction forever!
He was persecuted and forsaken so that we would never be forsaken by the One Who matters most!
He was struck down and destroyed so that we would be made new!
He has a judgment seat we will all appear before to receive what is due us for our deeds, whether good or evil!
His love controls us!
He died for all so that those who live might no longer live for themselves but live for Him!
He died for their sake and was raised up from the grave!

That's my King!

If you're in Him, you're a new creation – the old has passed away; behold, all things have become new!
He's the only roadway of reconciliation between God and man!
He knew no sin, but God made Him sin so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him!
He was afflicted so that you might be forever blessed!
He was beaten so that you might be forever healed!
He was imprisoned so that you might be forever set free!
He labored so the you might forever rest!
He was empty so that you might be forever full!
He was dishonored so that you might be showered with everlasting honor!
He died so that you might forever live!
He was sorrowful so that you might forever rejoice!
He was poor so that you might be made rich!
He had nothing so that you might possess everything!

That's my King! I wonder if you know Him today?!

Well, though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor so that by His poverty you might become rich!
He sowed more bountifully than anyone, and He will reap more bountifully beyond our greatest imaginations!
He's the inexpressible gift of God!
He's meek!
He's gentle!
He's humble!
He's bold!
He commands that all our thoughts should obey Him!
He's the heavenly Bridegroom worthy of a pure virgin bride – the Church!
He's worthy of our pure, undivided, and supreme devotion!
He's a servant of righteousness!
He's a Hebrew!
He's an Israelite!
He's the offspring of Abraham!
And He's dwelling in us!

That's my King!

His grace is sufficient for you in all of your troubles!
His power is made perfect in your weakness!
His power rests upon you in your weaknesses!
He's worthy for us to endure all manner of weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions and calamities for the sake of His name!
When we are weak in ourselves, then we are strong in Him!
He's the most powerful of the mighty!
He was crucified in weakness, but He lives by the power of God!
We are weak in Him, but we will live with Him by the power of God!

That's my King! That's my King!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Following Jesus Is Worth Everything!

Kyle Idleman writes:
John Oros was a church leader in Romania during the communist era . . . he talked about what it was like:
During communism, many of us preached . . . and people came at the end of a service, and they said, "I have decided to become a Christian." We told them, "It's good that you want to become a Christian, but we would like to tell you that there is a price to be paid. Why don't you reconsider what you want do do, because many things can happen to you. You can lose, and you can lose big."
John said that a high percentage of them chose to take part in a three month class to better understand the decision they were making. John says:
At the end of this period, many participants declared their desire to be baptized. Typically, I would respond, "It's really nice that you want to become a Christian, but when you give your testimony, there will be informers here who will jot down your name. Tomorrow the problems will start. Count the cost. Christianity is not easy. It's not cheap. You can be demoted. You can lose your job. You can lose your friends. You can lose your neighbors. You can lose your kids. You can lose even your own life."
He wanted the people to get to a place where following Jesus was so important to them, that if they lost everything it would still be worth it.

That's a lot different than the invitation to which many of us responded. At the end of the sermon the preacher said something like, "I want everybody to bow their heads and close their eyes. If you want to become a Christian then just raise your hand . . . I see that hand . . . I see that hand . . . ." But Jesus makes it clear that you need to count the cost.

If following Jesus cost you everything, would it still be worth it?
Kyle Idleman, Not A Fan (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2011), 66.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

We Pray Because Christ Is All!

We pray because:
We are needy, but Christ is our never ending supply!

We are depleted, but Christ is deeply delightful!

We are sinners, but Christ is spotless and sublime!

We are poor, but Christ is precious and priceless!

We are creatures, but Christ is the Creator of all things!

We are blind, but Christ is the Beatific Vision!

We are unrighteous, but Christ is unsurpassed, unparalleled, unprecedented, and uncorruptible righteousness, joy, delight, and pleasure!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

"That's My King!" In The Book Of 1 Corinthians!

My King has a name above all names and everyone who calls upon His name is a saint of the most high God!
The manifold grace of God comes to us in Him!
In Him we are enriched in all speech and knowledge!
He will sustain us to the end, guiltless in the day of His return!
My King didn't send Paul to baptize but to preach the Gospel!
My King's cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God Almighty!
He's the power of God!
He's the wisdom of God!
He's our wisdom!
He's our righteousness!
He's our sanctification!
He's our redemption!
He's our only boast!

That's my King! Do you know Him?!

When Paul came to preach to the Corinthians, all he knew was a two point sermon: Point #1: Jesus Christ; Point #2: Him Crucified!
He's the crucified Lord of glory!
No eye has ever seen anything like Him!
No ear has ever heard anything like Him!
He's the one and only solid, secure, strong and ever sturdy foundation!
He will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness!
He will disclose the purposes of every human heart!

That's my King!

He's our Passover Lamb!
In His name we were washed from all our filthy sin!
In His name we were sanctified!
In His name we were justified by the Spirit of our God!
Our bodies belong to Him!
God raised Him from the dead!
Our bodies are members of King Jesus!
My King has assigned each of us a life to lead, and He is in control of every detail of that life!
All the subjects of my King are completely free, no matter what conditions they find themselves in!
He's the One Person we should be the most concerned about obeying and pleasing in all things!
All things are through my King!
We exist through my King!
We must submit to, follow, and obey His law with all joy and delight!

That's my King! Are you submitting to my King in all things today?!

He's the spiritual Rock that followed the children of Israel in the wilderness!
He's the life giving drink that always satisfies your deepest thirst!
He's worthy of exact imitation in every way He calls us to follow Him!
He's the head of every man!
His body was broken for His people!
The New Covenant was made with His shed blood!
He's Lord!
He speaks with the most beautiful tongues of men and of angels and has perfect love at the same time!
He has all prophetic powers!
He understands all mysteries!
He has all knowledge!
He has all faith, so as to remove mountains!
And He has perfect love that shows He is everything!
He gave away all that He had!
He delivered His body to be mutilated, beaten, spit upon, stripped naked, and hung on a cross, and He did it all in perfect love, so He gains everything!

That's my King!

He's patient!
He's kind!
He doesn't envy!
He doesn't boast!
He's not arrogant!
He's not rude!
He doesn't insist on His own way!
He's not irritable!
He's not resentful!
He does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but He rejoices with the truth!
He bears all things!
He believes all things!
He hopes all things!
He endures all things!
He never ends!
He's the perfect One Who is, Who has come, and Who will come again!

That's my King! I wonder if you know Him today?!

The story of my King's life, death, and resurrection is THE matter of first importance in the Bible and in the whole world!
He died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures!
He was buried!
He was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures!
He appeared to many witnesses after His resurrection, proving that He was dead, but is now alive forevermore!
He's the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep!
By Him has come the resurrection from the dead!
In Him, all shall be made alive!
God has put all things in subjection under His feet!
He's the last Adam Who has become a life-giving spirit!
He's the man from heaven! - the heavenly Man Who takes away the sin of the world!
God gives us the victory through Him, and in this victory we proclaim: "Death is swallowed up in victory! O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?" Jesus Christ has given us the victory! Death is dead! Life is given! Christ is risen! And we are free at last!

That's my King!

He's steadfast!
He's immovable!
He's always abounding in the work of the Lord!
He's watchful!
He stood firm in the faith!
He acted like a man – He is the MAN of men!
He's strong!
All that He did, does, and will do is done in the most precious, gentle, understanding love!
He is so worthy of all our love, joy, and devotion that we should desire His return right now more than we want to experience anything else in this life! That means . . .
Come Lord Jesus now, before I can grow up!
Come Lord Jesus now, before I get what I want for Christmas!
Come Lord Jesus now, before I fall in love and get married!
Come Lord Jesus now, before I'm able to enjoy children, grandchildren, or great grandchildren!
Come Lord Jesus now, before I'm able to make a great name for myself!
Come Lord Jesus now, before I'm able to get rich!
Come Lord Jesus now, before I'm able to enjoy any other pleasure this life has to offer because You are better than all earthly pleasures! You alone "are fullness and the inexhaustible treasure of incorruptible pleasure!" (Augustine)

That's my King! That's my King!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Oh To Die To Everything Earthly We Most Long For!

Here's a good word on death to self from the life of James Chalmers, a missionary to the cannibals of New Guinea:
. . . Chalmers was awakened to the needs of South Seas missions as a teen-ager on Sunday afternoon in Sabbath school when his pastor read a moving letter from a missionary serving in Fiji. With tears in his eyes, the minister pleaded with the young people: "I wonder if there is a boy here who will by and by bring the Gospel to the cannibals." Chalmers vowed to be that one . . .

. . . a decade after he made his initial vow to be a missionary, Chalmers and his young bride, Jane, sailed for the South Pacific . . . the Chalmers' work was not easy . . . In 1879, only two years after coming to New Guinea, [Jane] sailed for Australia for medical treatment, where she died that year.

The grief only seemed to motivate Chalmers to greater dedication. He vowed to bury his "sorrow in work for Christ," recognizing similar sacrifices native teachers had made.

But Chalmers' sacrifice paid off. Within five years after he came he could find "no cannibal ovens, no feasts, no human flesh, no desire for skulls" in the region in which he worked. Instead, the heathen temples were packed out for gospel services . . .

[After returning from a furlough] he was accompanied by his second wife, but the marriage was short-lived. Once again he endured the sorrow of losing a wife to jungle fever.

And once again his zeal for reaching the lost was only magnified by his sorrow. Bringing the Gospel to unreached areas was ever his passion, and it was that passion that ended his life in the spring of 1901.

He and a young colleague, Oliver Tomkins, were on an exploratory trip along the coast of New Guinea in the Fly River region, an area known for ferocious cannibals. The men went ashore; and when they did not return, a search party went in and came out shortly with the grisly news.

Chalmers and Tomkins had been clubbed to death, chopped into pieces, cooked and eaten before the search party even arrived. It was a shocking incident that stunned the Christian world, but one that Chalmers himself had always been prepared to endure.
"To deny oneself is to be aware only of Christ and no more of self, to see only Him who goes before and no more the road which is too hard for us. Once more, all that self-denial can say is: 'He leads the way, keep close to Him.'" - Bonhoeffer

And following Him means following Him to where He was slaughtered on a cross.

I believe, help my unbelief! I deny myself, help my lack of self denial! I die to self, kill the rest of me that is alive! Oh Father, please help me to die! For Jesus' sake! Amen!

The story about James Chalmers came from: Ruth Tucker, From Jerusalem To Irian Jaya (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1983), 218-220.

Friday, December 9, 2011

"That's my King!" In The Book Of Romans!

Everyone should bow their knee to my King and be His everlasting, always dedicated, humbly submissive slave!
The Gospel of God is all about my King!
God made all kinds of promises in the holy Scriptures from long ago about His Son, Who was, is, and shall forevermore be King of all kings!
He was descended from David according to the flesh!
He was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by His resurrection from the dead!
He's our Lord!
He grants us grace to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of His name among all the nations!

That's my King!

He's the only one Who ever lived a perfectly righteous life with perfectly righteous faith!
He never suppressed the truth in unrighteousness!
He never exchanged the truth of God for a lie!
He always acknowledged God in everything He did!
He's righteous!
He's good!
He's content!
He's loving!
He's life giving!
He's the peacemaker!
He's truthful!

That's my King! Do you know Him?!

He's the preeminent lover of God!
He's humble!
He obeyed His parents perfectly!
He's the wisest of the wise!
He has the biggest heart of anyone who has ever walked on the face of this earth!
Glory and honor and peace are due Him because He only did what was always good!
God judges all the secrets in the hearts and minds of all people by my King Jesus!
Circumcision was indeed valuable to Him because He did keep the whole law!

That's my King!

He's not under sin!
He never turned aside from God!
He's worth more than all the joys, pleasures, and riches this world has to offer!
He only does good!
His throat proclaims an open, empty tomb!
His tongue only speaks what is true!
The honey of the honeycomb is under His lips!
His mouth is full of blessings and sweetness!
His feet are swift to give new life!
In His path is renewal and joy!
His way is peace, and He truly feared God alone like no other!

That's my King! Are you following Him as His disciple today?!

He is the righteousness of God!
The Law and the Prophets bear witness to Him!
He's the only way to be redeemed and regain a right relationship with a holy God!
He was put forward on that cross as an anger removing sacrifice by His own Father!
He displayed to the universe the unflinching, pristine righteousness of His Father in His death on the cross!
By not working but by trusting in my King, you will be counted just as righteous as my King Himself and you will be accepted in the Beloved!
He was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification!

That's my King!

He won for us peace with God!
Through Him we have obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God!
He died for the ungodly!
He demonstrates God's love for us in that while we were still sinners, our King died for us!
We have been justified by His blood!
He saved us from the wrath of God!
By His death He reconciled us to God even though we were His enemies!
His life saves us!
Through Him the free gift of God's grace abounds to many!
His one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men!
Through His obedience many will be made righteous!
Because of my King's life, death, and resurrection, where sin abounds grace abounds all the more!

That's my King! Are you finding your hope and righteousness in Him alone today?!

He was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father!
He will never die again!
Death no longer has dominion over Him!
He died to sin and lives to God!
We died with Him, and we died to the law so that we might be married to another – Jesus Christ the righteous!
My King delivers wretched men from their bodies of death! Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ!
The subjects of my King enjoy no condemnation forever, regardless of what they've done or failed to do in the past!

That's my King!

He was condemned in the flesh so that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us!
He's the greatest gift the Father could ever give us!
God is working everything together for good in the lives of the followers of my King!
Since the Father didn't even spare His own Son on our behalf, He shall surely with Him also freely give us all things!
He's at the right hand of God always interceding for us for our best and greatest good!
Nothing shall separate us from the love of our King – not tribulation; not distress; not persecution; not famine; not nakedness; not danger; not sword; not death; not life; not angels; not rulers; not things present; not things to come; not powers; not height; not depth; not loneliness; not hard circumstances; not the loss of a spouse; not old age; not singleness; not failing health; not rejection; not failure; not all manner of “impossible to handle situations” in your life; not depression; not hopelessness; not anything else in all creation; none of it will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord and King!

That's my King! Are you trusting Him with all the circumstances in your life today?!

My King was made the hated one on the cross so that sinners like you and me might be forever loved!
My King was made a vessel of God's wrath on that cross so that sinners like you and me might be vessels of mercy forever!
Whoever believes in my King shall never ever be put to shame!
He's the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes!
He's Lord of all!
Through His Word faith comes that leads to salvation!
He's the Deliverer Who came from Zion!
He's the only One Who can take away our sins!

That's my King!

Though we are from many different races, backgrounds, nations, and cultures, we are all one body in my King – one in Jesus Christ!
His love is genuine, though He is not loved genuinely in return!
He abhors what is evil!
He holds fast to what is good!
He loves His people with brotherly affection!
He outdid and outdoes everyone in showing honor, even when malicious dishonor is shown toward Him!
He's fervent in Spirit!
He rejoiced in hope!
He was patient in tribulation!
He was constant in prayer!
He contributed to the needs of the saints!
He blessed those who persecuted Him, and He loved those who cursed Him!

That's my King! Are you seeking to follow in His footsteps today? And if not I wonder if you know Him?!

He rejoices with those who rejoice, and He weeps with those who weep!
He wasn't proud but associated with the lowly!
He repaid no one evil for evil!
He never avenged Himself!
He fed His hungry enemy!
He gave drink to His thirsty enemy!
He was never overcome with evil, but He always overcame evil with good!
Whoever serves my King is acceptable to God!
He did not please Himself!
He suffered all the reproaches, pains, and hardships of His people so that they might be saved!
He made a way for us in all of our diversity to glorify God with one voice!
Through His life, death, and resurrection, He made a way for us to glorify God for His mercy!

That's our King!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Heart Longings For Christ To Be All!

I wrote these poems years ago. I'm not a poet (it will be obvious!), but I love to write out my longings from time to time.
My Savior

I once thought I was a Christian, in the truth I believed
Then through a teacher I found I was deceived
He was teaching us world religions, but to him they’re all relative you see
"All religions are roads to the same god for me"
This teaching was against all I learned from mom and Sunday school
I learned that salvation through Jesus Christ alone was the rule
Fear entered my heart, I was more than afraid
I began to doubt that Jesus alone was my aid
If I couldn’t believe in Jesus alone as Saviour and Lord
"I'll go to Hell forever!" my mind unceasingly roared
I just believed because my mom taught me so
Would an Indian child believe what I know?
I struggled and struggled to find the belief I thought I had but then lost
But in truth, the river from death to life through saving faith I had never crossed
Now I understand Jesus' words Luke did pen
Agonizing and striving are required for the straight gate to enter in
After much pain and fear of death and eternal suffering
By God's grace I embraced Jesus as second to nothing
Looking back one thing seems very very clear
Relativism is a deadly, false teaching to fear
African, Asian, Indian, or Arab no cultures are exempt
All peoples are commanded to turn to Jesus alone and repent
The hope of this truth resides not in man's effort or will
But in an Almighty God Who gives new hearts with a seal
Now in Jesus alone I find my delights soar and soar
Very soon with Him I'll find pleasures forever more!
Now if you have ears to hear and eyes to see your future so grim
Run to Jesus right now and find fullness of joy in Him!

Please End The Glory Stealing

Oh! That God would take my life from me
Then my wretched sin He would forever cease to see
My reticence to speak of my dear Savior's name
This sin my conscience would finally cease to blame
My failure to believe in God as Sovereign Master
If I were dead this glory stealing would cease all the faster
My self-righteous pride so often rises up so high
Oh God! You hate this for it is You that I defy
When others give You glory I get jealous and mad
For truly I want the glory for my worship - oh how sad
Yes my LORD You could end my life with simple ease
It is You who kills and makes alive just as You please
But LORD You've chosen to leave me on this earth
In Your sovereign will You gave to me new birth
And though my repentant tears are even dirty
In Christ alone my hopes stand ever sturdy
So through my Savior Jesus may I live more for His glory
Until He decides to end my sin stained but grace filled story!

Oh! To Live For His Glory Alone!

Oh! That I would glorify my God!
May there never be an Ichabod
With every atom of my being every second of every day
May all my energy be spent to max His glory that I pray
Oh God! How I utterly fail to do this every second all the time
Please come control my heart and keep me from this horrid crime
Also may every cent of money You have given me
Be used in every way to max Your glory - to give is glee
And how a worthless worm like I
Should hope my God to glorify?!
Only by working through His strength alone
Then through Jesus Christ is His glory shown
And if you say, "Oh! What a huge sacrifice!"
I will reply, "God's glory does me so entice
Suffering, torture, pain, and death by His grace I will endure with a roar
To God be the glory, In His presence I will enjoy pleasures forever more!"

Jesus My Only Righteousness

Jesus is my righteousness alone, and that is well
For all my own will only send me straight to hell
My songs, praise and worship, prayer, and study
In my self-righteousness with sin they are all dirty
I struggle and wonder even as I think and write
If this poetry causing prideful sin will show my dreadful plight
Oh! Lord Jesus with Your blood so pure
Come and make my dirty worship clean that it may endure
And at those moments when I forget myself and truly worship God
He enables me to do it by His grace for there will never be an Ichabod
God is the author of all good in every man
For He alone gets all the glory like no other can
So in Christ's righteousness alone my hopes of heaven ride
For only in Him will God's wrath against me be eternally satisfied!

My Struggle

Oh! Jesus! my eternal Lover
Come and fill my heart with fervor
Not with passions for sex and women fill
But with joy and pleasure that's eternally for real
Oh! this struggle for purity seems to hurt so much
How I long for a godly wife to love and kindly touch
But God has chosen to keep me single for right now
Oh! wretched unbelief in sin I so often turn and bow
"God works all things for good!" is HIS promise to me
Oh! God help my unbelief and cause me Your great promises to see
If I would only take the omnipotent God at His sovereign and true Word
All this worry, pain, and sorrow would simply be absurd
Our God is in the heavens and hath done what ere He pleases
For His Name's sake and His glory - He gains what ere He seizes
In Him is beauty no woman ever possessed
With His glory I should always be obsessed
Look to Christ! and desire His love alone!
Fullness of joy and pleasures forever more are found only at His throne
Oh God! with Psalmist help me from my heart to cry
One thing have I desired below or up on high
May I gaze at the beauty of the LORD forever bye and bye
One thing! One thing! there is no other!
Not even a wife, her touch, or a human lover
Nothing! Nothing! Nothing! on earth have I desired but Thee is what he cried!
Oh! God! with these desires make my heart forever more abide until I've died!
For Your great Name's sake. Amen!

Martyr At The Stake

For God's glory I will die
In the fire, raise my hands to Jesus high
On the flames my praises ride
In my death God be glorified
And if hotter the fire the more He be magnified
Then to the fire add coals, for in His strength alone I hide
But take care that love in my heart abides
Because if not for me no gain resides
May I be enraptured with God from all sides!


If we must see how all will work out
Tis not faith in our hearts but only doubt
So look not to what is known or seen ahead
But cherish Jesus as your only hope instead!

The Overflowing God

Everyone has at least one wish or desire
It is for happiness - that burns our heart's fire
So seek pleasure and happiness in God until your bones are sore
And remember only in God are pleasure forever more!!!


My heart is so full of desire
Shining forth like the sun of fire
Pride, lust, and envy coming forth
More coming out from my move north
"Who is first?" the disciples asked
That nags my heart from first to last
And then there's her I long for so
Desiring one whom I can know
Please turn my heart oh God toward You
May "Christ is all!" in my heart sing true!

Friday, December 2, 2011

"That's My King!" In The Book Of Revelation!

The book of Revelation is the revelation of my King!

Those who hear and keep the revelation of my King shall be unimaginably happy and satisfied throughout all eternity!

My King is the faithful witness!
He's the firstborn from the dead!
He's the ruler of all the kings of the earth!
He loves us!
He's freed us from our sins by His blood!
He's made us a kingdom and priests to His God and Father!
To Him be glory and dominion forever and ever! Amen!

That's my King! Are you eager to give Him glory today?!

He's coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him!
All the tribes of the earth will wail on account of Him!
He's the Alpha and the Omega!
He's the Lord and God!
He's the One Who is and Who was and Who is to come!
He's the Almighty!

That's my King!

In Him is patient endurance!
He's worthy for us to be imprisoned and outcast, never to be heard from again on account of His name!
He's the Son of Man!
He wears the most beautiful clothes you have ever seen or imagined!
His eyes were like a flame of fire!
His voice was like the roar of many waters!
He sovereignly holds His blood bought churches in His righteous right hand!
From His mouth came a sharp, two-edged sword!
His face was like the sun shining in full strength!

That's my King! I wonder if you know Him today?!

If you saw my King, you would fall down to the ground as if you were dead!
But He'd tell you to fear not! Because though He's not safe, He's real, real good!
He's the first and the last!
He's the living One!
He died, but behold now He's alive forevermore!
He holds full command of the keys of Death and Hades!
He knows everything every person on earth has ever done, thought, felt, or said!
He don't need a list; He ain't checkin' it twice; and He knows we've all been naughty and not nice!
So He came to save us from our sins through His perfect sacrifice!
Which will always, only, and forevermore suffice!

That's my King!

He's worthy of our first love, our greatest love, and all the love that we can give!
Because He conquered, He grants to His conquerors to eat of the tree of life in the paradise of God!
His conquering followers will not be hurt by the second death!
His conquering followers will be given some of the hidden manna and a new name!
His conquering followers will be given authority over the nations and the morning star!
His conquering followers will be given beautiful, white garments and their names will never be blotted out of the book of life but will be confessed before His Father and the angels!
His conquering followers will be made a pillar in the temple of His God, and He will write on them the name of His God!
His conquering followers will sit with Him on His throne just as He conquered and sat down on His Father's throne!

That's our King! Do you know Him?!

He has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars!
He's the Holy One!
He's the True One!
He has the key of David!
He opens and no one will shut!
He shuts and no one will open!
He's the Amen!
He's the faithful and true Witness!
He's the beginning of God's creation!
Though we are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked; He came to make us rich, prosperous, and in need of nothing because we have Him as our great joy and treasure!

That's my King! Are you finding Him to be your all sufficient joy and treasure today?

He's the gold we need to be rich!
He's the white, spotless garment we need to be clean!
He's the salve we need for our eyes so that we can see!
He disciplines those He loves!
He's stands at the door and knocks and calls us all to come in to Him to eat, drink, and be eternally saved, safe, and satisfied!

That's my King!

He's the Lion of the tribe of Judah!
He's the Root of David!
He conquered!
He's worthy to take the scroll of history and open its seals!
He's the slain Lamb of God whose blood ransomed people for God from every tribe, language, people, and nation!
He's worthy to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!
To Him and to His Father be blessing and honor and glory and might and worship forever and ever!

That's my King!

When my King comes back, and be sure of this – He will come back! . . . those who have not bowed the knee to Him by faith will cry out for the mountains and rocks to fall on them to hide them from His almighty wrath!

Salvation belongs to our King!
His blood makes our dirty robes white as snow!
Because of Him, we'll hunger no more!
Because of Him, we'll thirst no more!
Because of Him, the sun shall not strike us and the heat shall not scorch us!
He will be our Shepherd, and He will guide us to the springs of living water!

That's my King! Is He your Good Shepherd and Living Water today?!

The kingdom of this world will become His kingdom!
He shall reign forever and ever!
He conquers every power that's against Him!
He's the King of kings and the Lord of lords!
His name is Faithful!
His name is True!
He judges in righteousness and makes war on His enemies!
On His head are many diadems!
He's clothed with a robe dipped in blood!
And His name is The Word God!

That's my King!

He's the Temple of the living God!
He's the Light in which the nations walk!
From His throne flows the river of the water of life that is bright as crystal!
He's returning to repay everyone according to what he has done!
He's the Alpha and the Omega!
He's the first and the last!
He's the beginning and the end!
He's the root and descendant of David!
He's the bright and morning star!
He's surely coming back soon!
Oh come Lord Jesus! Come quickly!

That's our King! Are you living in such a way so that His return might be hastened today?!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

I Quit My Life . . . For Jesus

I'm reading a wonderful story about an 18 year old woman who grew up in America with all its comforts, but she quit her life because she was called to follow Jesus to help the poorest of the poor. She had it all: a wonderful, loving family; homecoming queen; class president; bright future in college; boyfriend; but she heard the call of Jesus, left it all, and followed Him.

She wanted to do a year long mission trip before college, so she went to Uganda to serve as a teacher. While there she saw the desperate needs of the poor, starving orphans and adopted 14 of them (yes 14!). Now she lives in Uganda as a single, 22 year old mother of over a dozen children and runs a ministry to other poor and needy children there.

In this account she describes what it was like to break up with her boyfriend in order to follow Jesus where she believed He was leading her.

Here's a small portion of the account:
They were moving in opposite directions. They both new it, but they both refused to let go. So she asked God for a very specific sign. For something that she thought very unlikely if not absolutely impossible. And then something devastating happened. God gave her the sign that she asked for. So she kissed him goodbye and drove away and cried so hard that she doubted she would ever breathe again. She tried not to wonder if anyone would ever love her like that again or how she would do this all alone.

And that’s when He reminded her that she wasn’t. That HE would make her feel beautiful as a single mom covered in dust and spit up. That He appreciated her even when everyone else forgot to say thank you. That He believed in her when the rest of the world thought everything she did was crazy. That He would cheer her on and pick her up when she just didn’t feel strong enough. That His voice whispering in her ear would turn those rough days right around. That He would ALWAYS be faithful. That His love would be unconditional. That He, her ONE TRUE LOVE would never leave or forsake her and would give her her heart’s desires. That He would make all things new, even her shattered heart.
Luke 14:26

Cling To Jesus!

Charles Spurgeon said:
The child, in danger of the fire, just clings to the fireman, and trusts to him alone. She raises no question about the strength of his limbs to carry her, or the zeal of his heart to rescue her; but she clings. The heat is terrible, the smoke is blinding, but she clings; and her deliverer quickly bears her to safety. In the same childlike confidence cling to Jesus, who can and will bear you out of danger from the flames of sin.
HT: Desiring God Blog