Psa 26:6 I will wash mine hands in innocency: so will I compass thine altar, O LORD:What a marvelous statement to be able to say this in truth. This should be what every person that proclaims Christ is their Savior strives to be. We are seen as innocent in the eyes of God because of the blood of Jesus. Complete innocence will not be achieved until we join the heavenly host. That does not mean we should not give up on this life we live and the innocency that we desire. May we wash our hands in holiness.
Tag Archives: Savior
NEXT TO GODLINESS
NEXT TO GODLINESS
William Andrew Dillard
Parson to Person
There is an old saying often heard a generation or two ago: “Cleanliness is next to godliness!” If applied to one’s spiritual life, there may be something to it, but most often it was understood to apply to the physical body. Maybe that was due to the weekly bathing most did due to a lack of running water, especially hot water.
As the idea applies to the body, I never did believe the old saying was true. However, there is much to be said of it when one applies it to the spiritual life.
Sin is always represented as vile, filthy, reprehensible, etc. Even the goodness of natural man is that way in God’s sight. Notice His estimation of man’s righteousness in Isaiah 64:6, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”
On the other hand, true righteousness is represented as cleanliness. It is here that the old saying finds it true meaning. As the Lord chastened His people through the prophet Isaiah, He admonished: “Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; learn to do well, seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.” Isa. 1:16-17.
In New Testament times when Jesus was rebuffed because His disciples were eating without washing their hands, He taught quite plainly that it was not what entered the body that defiled a man, but what came out of it. Matt. 15:11, 20.
It should also be noted that the apostle Paul explained to the church at Ephesus that His church was so loved by Jesus that He gave Himself for it; that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word. Eph. 5:25-26.
The apostle James doubled down on this great truth by stating,”. . . cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.” James 4:8. Presented here as the essential action to be close to God, he introduced the idea by saying, “Draw night to God, and He will draw nigh to you. . . “
Obviously, it is essential for every person to repent of sin and trust the Lord Jesus Christ as the only personal Savior, but perhaps the appeal is most often written to God’s own people to enter the strait gate an walk in the narrow way. How that is done is pointedly revealed by the ancient psalmist in Psalm 119:9, “Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy Word.”
Truly, a clean body smells better than a dirty one, and it is often essential to good health. But the cleanliness that is next to godliness must reference the very heart to be realized as true. How clean is your heart?
Beware of Scheming Friends
MARCH 18 – Beware of Scheming Friends
2Sa 13:3 But Amnon had a friend, whose name was Jonadab, the son of Shimeah David’s brother: and Jonadab was a very subtil man.
The best of friends can lead to terrible things. How many have seen the motto, when I am in jail, my best friend is there with me.” This is not my choice as a best friend. Our friendships should elevate and warn us about trouble to come. Amnon had an evil desire and his friend laid out a plan that could make this desire come true. The friend was not implicated to share in results of this completed plan. The fulfillment of this plan brought death to Amnon and Jonadab was free from any consequences.
One thing we need is friends that elevate us. Friends that love us enough that they will encourage us to do the right thing. Decisions can make us or break us in this life. Not only do we need friends that lead us in the right direction, we need mentors. Those that have lived and served a long time. Those that have met the problems and overcome them. Would a middle–income person looking for financial advice turn to a middle–income person whose finances are in a shambles and ask them advice? I would go to the man that had accumulated a retirement nest egg that was very comfortable. I would seek out the one upon buying a car said, “I will not buy another pair of shoes until this car is paid off. He put cardboard in the shoes to cover the holes until that car was paid off. He accumulated a very comfortable retirement.
Whatever your goal in life, good friends are important. Friends that stick with you through thick and thin. Friends that have good advice when troubles and trials come. Friends that maybe we don’t see for a few years, yet communicate things that we would reveal to others. I have a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. I need daily communication with Him. We communicate through prayer and the Word He has given us.
When I can do no more, I have a friend that I can turn everything over to Him and He takes care of it. Jesus Christ, my Savior, my Guide, my Comfort, my Advisor, my Friend.
FEBRUARY 9 – AT THE FEET
FEBRUARY 9 – AT THE FEET
Ruth 3:4 And it shall be, when he lieth down, that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and thou shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what thou shalt do.
A custom unknown in our nation was when Ruth laid down at the feet of Boaz. In the 3rd chapter and verse one, a word is used that has an interesting meaning. That word is “rest” and could mean “home.” I always connect the term rest with home. I leave work to go home to rest from my labors of the day. Naomi is asking Ruth if she should seek rest (a home) for her. A home indicates rest and security.
Boaz is kin to us. We are related by marriage. Here is an opportunity to rest from her labors and gain a husband and a home. This would be security for a person. A place where one can retreat from the cares and drudgery of this wicked world. All Ruth had to do was lay at Boaz’s feet. How simple was this? All of this depended upon Boaz being a kinsman. He was wealthy and could provide for her. He had already shown himself inclined to her by the instructions he gave to the men that harvested his field.
What about us? Jesus is our kinsman redeemer. He wants to redeem us and give us security and a place to retreat from the wickedness of this world. He wants to give us security. It is so simple. For by grace are ye saved through faith. It is so simple some stumble, expecting that they need to be good to get to heaven. He gives us security in that He gives us eternal life like John 3:16 says, “everlasting life.” After we have been redeemed by prostrating our selves at the feet of the risen Savior, we have come home for rest, peace and the security of Jesus Christ.
Let us seek the Savior for salvation and security and service.
Great Day In The Morning
The Lord has rewarded us with another day of opportunities. I count the day good when I can roll out of bed. I call the day great after I struggle up off the floor after I roll out of bed. What a great day today and so many opportunities the Lord gives us to witness to others about our Savior. We are given great opportunities to tell others of our church and invite them to come worship with us. At the mall or at the store, opportunities abound. At breakfast or at work our influence and the Word can draw others. Let us use this day as an opportunity to witness.
THE SAVIOR OF HIS PEOPLE
William Andrew Dillard
THE SAVIOR OF HIS PEOPLE
The Holy Spirit used the apostle Paul to say in one place, “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:9-11.
It is also most interesting to note that the angel of God delivered the name of Mary’s child to Joseph, saying: “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.” Matthew 1:21.
“Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, There’s Just Something About That Name” the songwriter penned. Indeed, there is much, so much about that marvelous name. It is Hebrew in origin. In fact, it is the same as the name “Joshua,” and means “Jehovah is salvation.” The Old Testament Joshua, a type of Jesus (The embodiment of Jehovah) led the covenant people of God into the Promised Land through conquest and rule. Jesus will do the same as He leads His people into the fulfillment of promise of the millennial reign through conquest and rule with a rod of iron.
However, the angel declared the primary reason for the name is that He would save His people from their sins. Far beyond the new birth (saving from Adamic sin) that is universally offered, it is the saving of HIS people from THEIR SINS. John explained that “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” I John 1:8. But the wonderful truth is that Jesus is able to save them to the uttermost who come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them.” Heb. 7:25. Therefore, John went on to say, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” I John 1:9. What a Savior! He saves us! He keeps us! He forgives us! He blesses us!“…and thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His people from their sins.”
HOW TO KNOW THERE IS A GOD
HOW TO KNOW THERE IS A GOD
Would you like to know that there is a God, that Jesus Christ is His Son and Savior, and what true teaching is? Will, Jesus Himself suggested an experiment: Joh_7:17 If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself. The responsibility is on the seeker. He must be willing to do God’s will when it is revealed to him. God promises no light to one who closes his eyes against it, nor any spiritual food to one who will not eat.
If you are an honest doubter, will you pray this prayer? “God, if you exist, I ask You to reveal Yourself to me. I am willing to do Your will if You reveal it to me, and will accept Jesus as my Savior if You reveal Him to me as Your Son.” Then read the entire Gospel of John, first noting its purpose in chapter 20, verse 31.
Faith Is Necessary
“But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness,” Romans 4:5.
Some may have questioned, “Is my faith strong enough to save me?” “Do I have enough faith?” Many may believe that their childhood profession in Jesus was not strong enough and remake professions of faith as an adult. The faith of a child is just as good as the faith of an adult. Faith in Jesus Christ as the Son of God that He died, was buried and rose on the third day is enough. Our faith in Jesus Christ saves us.
Thankfully, salvation is not based on how strong our faith is at the moment of belief or how strong it remains in our lifetime but is based on faith in Jesus Christ. Two other false beliefs are that there is a special prayer to pray and that faith keeps them saved. God judges the intent of the heart. Jesus offers us salvation as a gift because He loves us, not because we have earned it. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit keep us secure.
Faith is necessary. It is believing and trusting in Jesus Christ and accepting His free gift of salvation. It is an action of the heart, mind and soul and is necessary to please God.
Faith in our wonderful Savior is effective. Without it we cannot be saved.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast (Eph. 2:8, 9).
He Is the Savior
“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else,” Isaiah 45:22.
God speaks through Isaiah: gather all the nations which worship dead gods. Sticks, stones, dirt, metal—you name it, man worships it. Lost man worships the creation for security rather than the Creator. Gather yourselves together. Give it your best shot; put all your strength together. Let the earth rumble with your war machines. Bring it on!
In Ezekiel 38; 39, the armies of Satan are oblivious to the fact that God is actually drawing them together into one monster battle, a showdown to prove who the God of the universe really is—all-powerful, all-knowing, everywhere present, eternal God. Like Elijah’s square off on Carmel, He will show His arm of salvation to His people and put hooks in His enemies’ jaws. Then, the mountains of Israel will explode into volcanic ash under their feet; the blood of the earth will flow to the horses bits, and the enemies’ eyes will melt in their sockets.
At that time, none of His enemies will need a telegram saying, “I am God and there is no other. I alone am salvation. What is your problem down there?” He has already delivered His telegram and offered pardon to all who would believe that He sent His only begotten Son to suffer and save sinners. The saddest part of this whole scenario is the fact that lost men with their no-gods hide in the caves and beg the mountains to fall on them and separate them from the source of all this judgment on the ungodly.
They know where the judgment is coming from and still refuse to repent. Hell is full of ungodly pride. Pride is Satan’s favorite forté.
I suspect any person wacky enough to attack his own Creator probably deserves what he gets. God makes it clear that man’s rejection of His Son breaks His heart.
Proverbs 15:16; Philippians 4:11; Hebrews 13:5
Contentment is not laziness. Never suffer under that mistaken thought. Contentment is satisfaction with where we are at in life, work, marriage and our relationship with God. It includes the idea of happiness. This does not preclude improvement in all areas of our life. The truth is that without improvement we will lose our contentment. Contentment does not mean that we are satisfied with where we are at but indicates we are striving for betterment without being worried by external influences and wickedness.
Proverbs states this very clearly. “Better is little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and trouble therewith.” Proverbs 15:16 KJB. Be content with what we have and we will have great peace of mind. We must establish proper priorities that Jesus has given us in His Word. “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matt. 6:33 KJB. When we pursue proper things that Jesus says to pursue we will dwell in contentment.
What does it mean to be in want? Paul says to the Philippian brethren, “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” Philippians 4:11 KJB. Whether rich or poor, contentment should be our companion. Riches do not make us a better person. Being poor does not make us a bad person. Contentment will make us a pleasing person. Contentment demonstrates that our priorities in life are right. It indicates that we have made Christ the focus and center of our life. We are pursuing the greatest, the most important thing in life and that is a loving relationship with our marvelous Savior, Jesus Christ. Are we content with Jesus Christ? When we have Christ, we have all we need.
Our problem is our eyes. We see the things of the world and desire becomes covetousness. We want and design to get. We see our neighbors and their toys and desire to have what they have. This tears or rips our focus from God and His Son Jesus Christ and the world becomes more important to us than our Savior. Hebrews says, “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” Hebrews 13:5 KJB. A short definition of “conversation” is appropriate. Webster 1828 dictionary. 1. General course of manners, behavior, deportment, especially as it respects morals. Be ye holy in all manner of conversation. I Peter I:15, “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” KJB Our way of living, our holy life should usher in contentment that overcomes all the pleasures of this world, preparing us for the world to come and the Holiness of God and His Son Jesus Christ that resides there. Praise God that He brings contentment into our lives.
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