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Archive for the ‘The Psalms’ Category

Sleep in heavenly peace.

Posted by appolus on November 23, 2021

Psalm 4:8 I will both lie down in peace, and sleep, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

You alone oh Lord cause me to sleep in perfect peace. Its the kind of sleep that our Lord slept in the back of the boat in the midst of a storm. When all the world, it seems, comes against us, when we seem to be all alone, we are not alone. When the waves crash over the sides of our boat and it seems that we shall be swamped, we shall not. In Christ alone we dwell in safety. He is our rear guard. Even in the darkest night the Lord will lift up the light of His countenance upon us. He fills our hearts with gladness. The world shall peer into the darkness and see the light of Christ burning deep inside of us and shining forth from our faces and they will stand amazed.

Those who trust in the Lord shall not be put to shame. He is yesterday and forever, always the same. His peace is the burning wall of fire that surrounds our camp, His Spirit is the burning oil that fills our lamp. He is the solid Rock upon which we stand and the wind of His Spirit is the means by which the fire is fanned. Oh brothers and sisters what fortunate people we are. Our very hearts are protected by Jesus Christ Himself. If God is for us, who can be against us? What trial shall prevail? What storm shall destroy? Nothing, no one, no trial. Lay your head down this night and know that the Lord Himself is with you and He shall never leave you.

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Who sits upon the throne of our hearts?

Posted by appolus on November 16, 2021

Col 3:15  And let the peace of God rule in your hearts,

How we long for this, do we not? The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, should rule rule and reign in our hearts. I want to say that as of late, this peace has not ruled in my heart. In days of old, when there was not peace in the land, it was typically because there was competition for the throne of the land. Someone would challenge the king and claim to be the right and proper heir to the throne. Pretenders would come forward having raised an army and would fight the king in open battle and the winner takes the crown, takes the throne, rules supreme. This would be known as civil war.

If Jesus does not rule and reign in us, we can expect no peace. When a pretender or a usurper is allowed to come forward and challenge the rightful King, then peace flees and war ensues. In this very chapter we see that we ourselves are the battle-field and the usurper is the flesh. Who shall sit upon the throne of our hearts? Remember, Jesus must have all of us. The “members” of our flesh must be defeated. My own particular rebellious members are fear and anxiety. If I allow them an allotment in the land of my flesh, they will quickly try and take over the land, they can have no place within me. I cannot make treaty’s with them, for they are treacherous and liars. They must be put to death.

And how do we kill these members? We must “put on,” love. (Col 3:14) Now these two words “put on,” means to clothe oneself.” Remember when we were in encouraged in the Scriptures that we would have a garment of praise for a Spirit of heaviness.” (Isa 61:) Also in the Scripture the oil of joy was given for mourning. You see what is happening here? There is exchanges going on. In the same manner we are encouraged in Col 3 to put off anger and wrath and malice and put on tender mercies, meekness and long suffering. And above all these things we are to put on Love. It is the bond of perfection which leads to the peace of God ruling in our hearts. In another place we are told that perfect love casts out all fear (1 John 4:18) There is no fear in love. So brothers and sisters, let love do its work in you today, put it on. You already have it, put it on. Its just like the armor of God, you must put them on, so must you adorn yourself with Love. And then you will discover that the peace of God rules and reigns in your heart.

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The blessings of life.

Posted by appolus on November 14, 2021

Psa 133:3  As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life for evermore. 

There is such a beauty in unity. The phrase “together in unity,” means to be alike all at once. There is also a root word from that phrase meaning to gather. There is a mystery involved when we gather together and we are alike all at once. To stand, covered by the same Spirit, all at once is to be covered by oil from head to toe. It is to be soaked to the skin by the dew that covers everything. Walk through a field of long grass in the morning and despite the fact that there has been no rain, you shall be soaked by the mist that falls upon everything in the early watches.

There is but one place in all of the scriptures that we read that the Lord “commanded a blessing.” And that blessing was life. And the fruits of that blessing are eternal. In the charlatan world of the charismatics they refer to “the soaking.” This has nothing to do with the actual soaking of life, and that more abundantly, that we see when brethren dwell together in unity. No, the blessings of life and unity come as we gather together in the Spirit and under the name of Jesus. There, life floods forth. We see just glimpses of it in revivals as men, for a mere moment, forget about their divisions and denominations and lift high the banner of Christ.

As the day of the Lord fast approaches, this ancient commandment from God that cannot be revoked, will come into its own. God’s people will gather together as one in Christ. Persecution shall strip away all pretense, all superficial differences. The genuine saints of God shall come forth from the wilderness of disunity and find each other in the beauty of Holiness. They will indeed be soaked by the blessing of life, even in the midst of a world under judgment. This life will be unmistakable to all who see it. The glory of God shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea. Life, and that more abundantly, shall stand out radiant in the midst of darkness and death. There will be no mistaking the unity of the saints. It will be like earth itself, a blue jewel of life in the vast darkness of space.

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Trust in Him alone.

Posted by appolus on October 24, 2021

Psalm 146:3  Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. 

This psalm, considered to be written by David, is remarkable. Here is a prince indeed, a King himself, shouting aloud for all the world to hear that men should not put their trust in him. Our hope must be in the Lord! We are called to praise the Lord with all of hearts and with all of our souls and sing praises to God while we yet still have our being on this earth. David is telling us not to trust in princes, even good ones like himself for he is but a man whose body shall be laid in the ground like every other man. Rather, trust in the Living God who made the heavens and the earth. Trust in the God of justice. Trust in the God who gives food to those who truly hunger, hunger after Him. In doing this you will have food for your soul.

Trust in the Lord who gives freedom to the prisoners. He came to set the captives free. He came to set at liberty, those who are bound by the chains of sin and hell and death. Trust in the Lord who opens the eyes of the blind. And in doing so you can truly sing ” I once was blind but now I see.” You will have eyes to see the glory of the risen King. Eyes to see His majesty. Eyes to see the train of His robe which fills the temple. Trust in the Lord who raises those who are bowed down. He gives grace to the humble. He elevates the lowly in spirit. He dwells in lofty places with the broken and the contrite. Humble yourself in the sight of the Lord and He will raise you up. Men die, all men die whether they are rulers or princes or presidents or kings, trust not in them. Rather trust in the Lord who reigns for ever and forever. Happy is the man whose hope is in the Lord.

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He is near.

Posted by appolus on October 21, 2021

Psa 145:18  The LORD is near unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth. 

This Scripture here in Psalm 145:18 says that the Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. He may feed the world and give provisions for mankind by His gracious creative hand, but to those who worship Him in Spirit and in Truth, He is near to them. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and by Him and in no other way, we come near to God. Listen to the words of one who calls upon Him in truth, David, from this Psalm. Starting at the beginning we see the marks, the words of those who are near to Him…….”I will extol you my God…….I will bless your name forever and ever……Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised……Your greatness is unsearchable………..I will mediate on the glorious splendor of your majesty……your Kingdom is an everlasting Kingdom. These, my fellow brothers and sisters, are the words of one who calls upon Him in truth. Who worships Him in Spirit and Truth, who knows by personal experience that He is the way, the truth and the life.

And how shall we know them? We shall know them first by their Love for God and the treasure that shines through them through earthen vessels. This love for God translates into love for one another, love for those who are near to Him and call upon Him in truth. This nearness, this proximity to God translates into personal holiness and creates the desires of our hearts which the Lord then fulfills for they are His desires. The language of this psalm is the language of heaven. The way David speaks about the Lord is the way the genuine saints speak about the Lord. Its the same language because its the same Spirit that resides in us that resided in David. To call upon Him in truth we must have truth in our inward parts. The depths of our heart, the very essence of who we are. This is where Truth resides and it cannot be hidden, for the Lord resides in broken vessels that He may pour through them His glory so that it may be seen of men.

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Know me!

Posted by appolus on October 19, 2021

Psa 139:1  O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me. 

This is one of the most intimate statements in all of the Scriptures. So very personal. Can you say this? Have you been searched by God? This word “searched,” is from the primitive root to “penetrate.” Has God invaded every part of who you are? Are you known by God? This, of course, is no abstract truth for of course God knows everything and everyone. No, this is a very intimate form of the word. Have you ever looked into the eyes of another human being, one who is being deceptive and say right to that person “I know exactly who you are.” Its a declaration of a knowledge that goes beyond anything to do with outward evidence. This is do with the inner man, the inner woman. David is declaring that God “knows,” him in the most intimate way. He says that “even from afar you understand my thoughts.” It is something akin to a husband and wife who are “one,’ and knows the other ones thoughts in ways that only they can.

This is the kind of relationship that every genuine saint has with the Lord. We walk in the sure knowledge that He “knows,’ our every thought. This is far beyond any human intimacy. To be one in spirit is far beyond being one in flesh. It is the ultimate intimacy. And of course the trouble with this kind of intimacy is that on the one side is perfection and holiness and purity, and on the other side is us, very much flawed by our flesh. This is why intimacy is such a difficult issue. It may be the most difficult of all the issues. At the root cause of all failings in the saints is a lack of intimacy with the Lord. Jesus of course knew this. Time and again he told us to abide in Him, to continue to abide in Him. To take up the cross, not once, but daily. Abiding in the Lord and in His Word, while carrying the cross is one sure way to stay very close to the Lord, to maintain that intimacy that can be so easily lost. Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, on a daily basis, on a moment to moment basis, and draw near to the Lord and He will draw near to us. And in that nearness there is intimacy and out of that intimacy flows the beauty of Holiness.

There are two very different kind of men in the Kingdom. One man shies away from this intimacy. He sets up camp at a safe distance and there he dwells. He stays within that camp and looks on from a distance, not unlike the Israelites who watch, from their camp, the tent of meeting. They worship God from afar but Moses and Joshua come to that tent of meeting and entered in. They have come to seek that intimacy. Men like Moses and Joshua could just as easily cry out to God what David cried “search me O God and know my heart, try me and know my anxieties and see if there is any wicked way in me and lead me in the way everlasting.” We have taught men from when they were boys, to guard their hearts, to pretend that they are fearless and to be independent. All of that works against intimacy, deliberately so. The only answer is surrender. Surrender into the hand of God and allow yourself to be consumed. Allow yourself to be searched. Seek to be known. This is the way of everlasting and He desires to lead us in it.

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And we rose up and praised Him.

Posted by appolus on October 17, 2021

Psa 137:1  By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion. 

It is a sad day when we sit down to weep. Memories come rushing into our minds like a river that never stops flowing. Our tears and our sadness only add to its flow as we consider the source of our pain. We remember how it was. We are left with the vague shadows that the world calls memories. Yet, what is a memory? It’s a pale imitation of what once was real. We grasp onto them, yet they are like gossamer butterflies flitting through our minds. Our hearts cry out for one more moment, just one more day and yet the knowing of that impossibility is the source of our sadness. The children of Israel had taken it all for granted and now it was no more.

How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land? How shall we who dwell in a foreign land rejoice when the enemy has stripped it all away? How shall we respond to the jeers of an enemy who taunts us and asks us to sing our songs of victory now? Shall we do as the children of Israel did? Shall we hang our harps upon the willow tree in our midst?(v2) How shall we in our day sing in the midst of great loss? Can we rejoice in the depths of captivity when the enemy seems to be so victorious? What do we have that the children of Israel did not have? Jesus said in John 14 that He would not leave us as orphans. He would send the Helper, the Holy Spirit. Jesus says that He has prepared a place for us, even in the presence of our enemies. There is a table set before us, a feast of His presence. It enables us to take the harps down from the willow tree, the tree of weeping, and play a song of victory, right there, in the midst of our circumstances.

“And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.” (Acts 16:25) The harp had been taken down at the midnight hour and the power of God came down with it. As the praises and the prayers went up, down came the power of God and it shook everything. That harp is in our hands brothers and sisters. That prayer is on our lips, those praises are in our mouth. And the power of God never fails, it is eternal. The children of Israel sat down beside the raging river of weeping. We have been made to sit down in green pastures and the river that flows is the still waters of peace and joy and comfort. Even in the valley of the shadow of death we shall not want, for He leads us and He guides us and He comforts us. And in that comfort that He sent us, the Holy Spirit, we are victorious and we find that He inhabits the praises of His people.

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Surely I have calmed my soul.

Posted by appolus on October 14, 2021

Psalm 131:2 Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul.

I cannot tell tell you how many times my soul has cried out from its depths for quiet and for calm. In an ever changing world and sometimes extremely tough circumstances, how much value can we put upon this? To be calm and to be quiet in your mind as opposed to a raging stormy sea of noise and anxiousness and fear. Then of course there is the accuser who may be ever whispering in your ear. David says in the opening verses of this Psalm that his heart is not haughty nor his eyes lofty. He does not concern himself with matters that are too great for him nor too profound for him. There are a few things to be said of that, I have two.

Firstly there are the matters of our day and we get caught up with them, much like the world does. Watch any news at all and perhaps you begin to feel the weight of it all pressing down upon your shoulders. In a news cycle that runs twenty four hours a day, we may find ourselves drawn into crisis after crisis. And yet who are we saints? The Lord’s kingdom is not of this world. We know how this world ends, we already know it yet somehow we can get caught up with it and feel its weight. We need to lay that down. David was a king when he made his opening statements of this psalm. A king! And yet he says he did not concern himself with great matters! Surely the answer is he trusted in the Lord His God. If a king can do it and lay his burdens down, surely you can?

Secondly and more interestingly, listen to what David’s brother says to him when he, the young shepherd boy comes into the armies camp in 1 Sam 17:28 …”I know thy pride and thine wickedness of heart.’ Eliab was angry with his brother. He accuses him of being prideful and haughty. Why? Because David has just heard Goliath mock the armies of God. David was indignant and had a mind to kill Goliath. This would have undoubtedly shamed not only his brothers but every man among them that this boy was willing to fight this giant when they were all so very afraid. David had not sought this situation, the situation found him. And God moved in his heart. Brothers and sisters we should not concern ourselves with great matters, nor should we pursue things that are to profound for us. Unless you are in the Lord these matters will crush you. It is only by His Spirit that we should pay any mind to any matters at all.

And so brothers and sisters. Do you seek to be quiet in your mind and in your spirit? Do you seek to walk in peace , a peace that surpasses all understanding? Then do this. Seek the Lord your God with all of your heart and your mind and your spirit. Let that be your life’s works. Do not watch things that make you anxious, in fact be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication and thanksgiving make your request known to God. Let your heart be bathed in thankfulness. One more thing. David was falsely accused by his brother. Perhaps, way back when, when you were young, you were raised with slander instead of love. To this day you still hear the accusations ringing in your ears and echoing throughout your soul. Time and again it raises its ugly noisy head. I want you to know that your total identity is found in Christ. He thought so much of you that He died for you. God so loved you that He made an enormous sacrifice to save you. All that matters is what He thinks about you. Rest in that. Be at peace. You are loved by God and in the end, that is all that matters. And in this knowledge there is no burden.

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Oh Lord, your time draws near.

Posted by appolus on October 12, 2021

Psalm 119:126 It is time for You to act, O lord, for they have regarded Your law as void.

Is that not your hearts cry dear saint? In a fallen world where gross darkness is covering the land and the name of God is blasphemed everywhere. In a time and place where day has become night. Right has become wrong and truth is trampled in the streets. What used to hide away among the shadows and the alleyways now marches down Main street with its banner held high. And if the enemy would have his way then it is the saints who would have to hide among the shadows in the dark-lands of the alleyways.

Can you not here this Scripture ringing out from Romans “for I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ , for it is the power of God unto salvation………………for the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness ………for since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead , so that they are without excuse, because although they knew God, they did not glorify God.” O Father in heaven, glorify your name in all the earth?

And of course our Father in heaven glorified His name in all the earth through the name and the power of the Lord Jesus and we cry “glorify your name again Lord.” In verse 136 the psalmist says ” Rivers of water run down from my eyes, because men do not keep Your law.” Those rivers, brothers and sisters, are still running deep for our Lord Jesus is mocked and ridiculed and rejected. Shall we not cry out to God with our whole hearts? Shall we not rise before the dawning of the morning and seek the one whose tender mercies are great? Many are out tormentors and enemies yet we shall not turn from His testimony. Verse 161 says “Princes persecute me without a cause, but my heart stands in awe of Your Word.”

Lord, we stand in awe of You. We look to the heavens and know where our help comes from. The foundations may be destroyed and the Princes of this world may hunt us down but we trust in you that you may glorify Your name through us. Christ in us, the hope of glory! Behold, the nations are as a drop in the bucket. To whom shall our God be likened to? Have you not known? Have you not heard? Has it not been told to you from the beginning? He shall bring the Princes of this world to nothing. They shall not keep root. For we shall lift up our eyes on high and behold the One who has created all things. And we who are weak are made strong. Even the youth shall faint and be weary. And young men shall utterly fall, but we who wait upon You shall renew our strength, we shall mount up with wings as eagles. we shall run and not be weary, we shall keep on walking and not faint (Isa 40)….glory to God

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Into the depths.

Posted by appolus on October 10, 2021

Psa 119:2  Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with their whole heart. 

This is the beginning of Psalm 119 and is a continuing themes throughout. Seeking the Lord with our whole hearts. With our whole hearts. It is the key to an abundant life in Christ. Can I suggest that to seek the Lord with anything other than our whole hearts is an exercise in futility. If we do anything in this world half heartedly we know we shall not succeed. Secular folks know this all too well. How is it that we could ever imagine that we could seek the Lord with anything less than all that we have?

In verse 32 the psalmist says that “I will run the course of Your commandments for you shall enlarge my heart.” This is a beautiful way of saying that I will run after my Lord, I will run after His ways, I will be diligent and delight myself in His ways. When I do this, then my very heart in enlarged. My capacity to love the Lord and the world will increase. My ability to forgive and to show mercy will be full to overflowing in this heart of mine that is now significantly deeper. Running after the Lord with everything that we have is like excavating the depths of our hearts. Into that excavated heart flows the river of life from the throne of God.

In verse 111 the psalmist tells us ” Your testimonies I have taken as a heritage forever, I have inclined my heart to perform your statutes, forever, to the very end.” Oh, the magnificence of a fully committed heart that is resolved to believe and to follow the Word of God and the promises of God until the very end. There is a huge difference between being on a boat in a shallow river than being on a ship in the deepest ocean. In the deepest ocean one senses and can feel the power of its depths. It is moved by the wind and heaves forward in massive powerful waves. This too is the power that resides within the heart of the saint who has sought and found the Lord with His whole heart. Come away from the shallow rivers saint, and come into the depth of the deepest of all oceans, the Fathers heart.

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Light shall arise.

Posted by appolus on October 8, 2021

Psa 112:4  Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness: he is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous. 

We see in Exodus 10:22-23 that a great darkness fell upon Egypt for three days. This darkness was described as “thick,” or “gross.” Yet, in Goshen, the children of God dwelt in light. When Jesus hung upon the cross there was a gross darkness that fell upon the land from the sixth hour until the ninth. Gross darkness is undoubtedly judgment from God and in both the above examples it led to an exodus. Moses would lead the children out of bondage and slavery by the power of God. Jesus would do the same.

To those who are covered by the righteousness of Christ there arises light from the deep darkness. And it leads the way to victory. We saints will undoubtedly encounter darkness and gross darkness in our lives, maybe you are experiencing it right now. I want to tell you saint, that the light that is within you, the light of Christ, shall overcome this darkness. He will rise up in you and by His power you shall conquer the darkness. In Micah 7:8 the prophet says “rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a light unto me.”

Remind your enemy today that even though you may have fallen, you shall arise by the power of God. Even though you may at this moment be sitting in darkness, your Lord shall be a light to you. In Psalm 139 David says that even the night shall be as light to him. Even if he made his bed in hell, there Gods light would shine into the darkness. Where can you go from His Spirit saints? What can separate you from such a love as this? Commit your situation into His hands and He will raise you up as light arises from darkness like the breaking of the dawn. The devil himself will tremble as he hears a strange noise coming from the midst of the darkness, it shall be the praises of God from the saints. This is light, and in that there is no darkness.

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No more rebellion.

Posted by appolus on October 5, 2021

Psalm 106:7 When our fathers dwelt in Egypt they remembered not the multitude of thy mercies; but rebelled at the sea, even at the Red sea. 

This is one of the most famous scenes in all of the Bible, and it is very instructive for us. The Israelites had been delivered from bondage. They had been taken out of slavery and freed from their cruel taskmasters who hated them. And now we find them at the Red sea with the Egyptians bearing down on them. And this is where we are told that they rebelled. It is rebellion not to trust God. It is in effect a disobedient act, an act likely to provoke God. Does this seem harsh to you?

Listen to the accusation they make against God . They ask Him if there was not enough graves in Egypt that you had to take us to the wilderness to die. They remind Moses that they had already told him they would rather serve the Egyptians in slavery than to die in freedom. Yet despite all of this, God would save them. Moses says to them, in our moderns words “shut your mouth and see the Salvation of your God.” You might think that sounds like an angry retort, it was. Moses was disgusted and God was none too pleased.

For the average human being, there is nothing more important than saving their own lives. Given the choice between life and slavery or freedom and death, the vast majority will choose slavery and life. And this is where God’s remnant saints emerge. A people who love not their lives unto death. A people redeemed from the world and transformed in spirit. A new creation in Christ, the very same Christ who came to die, and not only to die, but to die the death of the cross. Shall we not follow Him? Did He not teach us that those who try and save their lives will lose them, and those who lose their lives for His sake will gain eternal life?

This is the fragrant army of the saints. This is a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light (1 Pet 2:9) Those who desire to live above all else, who desire the things of the world, will indeed have them, but they will also have leanness of soul. And out of that leanness they shall exchange the glory of God and fall down before the molded image, the golden calf. They shall forget God. They may honor Him with their lips but their shallow hearts will be far from Him.

The saints are soon to face another such Red sea. Yet this time, when their backs are against the wall they shall not cry out in bitter recrimination against their God, nor shall they beg for deliverance. They will glorify Him. They will gladly trust their God even if it means complete destruction. And they will do this because no matter what, God is worthy to be praised. And we can join with Job, a man blameless in the sight of God, and say “Even if He kills me, yet shall I trust Him.”(Job 13:15)

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Who He is!

Posted by appolus on October 3, 2021

Psa 104:1  Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty.

Oh brothers and sisters, is He not high and lifted up? He is clothed with honor and majesty and glory, bless the Lord oh my soul. He lifts my spirit up and it soars into the heavens as I consider His great love. And who among us could consider His great love without looking to Calvary, the culmination of the very source of all love! It is because He loved us first that we know anything of love at all. It all flows from the depths of the Fathers heart and was manifested so vividly on Calvary where the Blood of our precious Jesus was spilled.

We talk a lot of what Jesus did but rarely do we hear words of who He is. A man or woman looking back in history can talk about what Jesus did, but only one who knows Him can talk about who He is. We talk a lot about what Jesus can do for us, but rarely do we simply just consider His glory and His majesty and His honor. The fact that He is clothed with these things. We cannot look to Jesus and not see the impenetrable light that He is wrapped in. When we look from the darkness and the dimness of this world and see this magnificent light then it begins to penetrate every part of who we are. The power of God falls when He is lifted up, not for what what He can do for us but simply for the marvel of who He is.

Consider the pressing need of Paul and Silas in the deep dark dungeon. They needed to be healed, they needed to be delivered, but none of that was their chief concern. The pressing issue of their torn and broken bodies, chained in darkness, wracked with pain, was to praise Him. To lift up their voices in praise of the God that is high and lifted up. The God that is clothed with majesty, the God that dwells in such a great light that no darkness could possibly exist. And down into the darkness of that dungeon fell the glory and the power and the majesty of God. If I be lifted up. If I be lifted up. If we lift up the name of Jesus then down comes the power. The power to draw all men unto Him. The power to overcome darkness, the power to stand when we should fall. The power to see when we are blind. The power to love when we should hate. The power to transform the broken sinful lives of men and women. Glory to God.

There has never been a greater need for all the world to see a manifestation of Jesus. It can only come through us, for we are the bearers of the light. We have been called to testify to His majesty. We have been called to testify of His glory, we have been called to testify that He is high and lifted up and the train of His robe fills the temple. Come see a man who told me everything I have ever done. Come see the Christ. People must encounter Christ for themselves. Second hand information is of no use to anyone. It’s living waters that they need. And only those who can testify to a living Christ can lead people to the Living waters.

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As far as the east is from the west.

Posted by appolus on September 30, 2021

Psa 103:12  As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. 

What a magnificent prophecy! As far as the east is from the west, then the sins of the saints shall not be held against them for this is the distance between judgement and mercy. The mercy of the Lord is “from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, and His righteousness to the childrens’s children.” (v17) The righteousness of Jesus who sits at the right hand of the Father. Glory to God, for these are those who fear Him, those who know Him, those who are known by Him. This fear of God brings us trembling before the throne of grace. There we find this very mercy as we confess our sins. It is there that we find His righteousness. It is there that we discover that nothing in this life is about our righteousness. On my very best day I’m not good enough and on my worse day He is still good enough. His righteousness.

It is always about Jesus. It is He that forgives all of our iniquities. It is He who heals us. It is He who redeemed our lives from destruction. It is Jesus who crowns us with lovingkindness and tender mercies. It is He in whom we find satisfaction and in this He renews our youth like the eagles( v2-5) It is Christ alone who does all these things. All of my strivings, all of my efforts are of little to no value in the Kingdom of God. It is my recognition and my surrender to His righteousness that produces something of eternal value in me. It does not matter who I am or where I have been, it only matters who I have seen. The question becomes have you seen the King? Have you glimpsed the glory? Have you seen Him high and lifted up sitting at the right hand of the Father? Have you seen His righteousness for it is this that covers you.

The glory that you have seen is the righteousness of Christ and His glory fills the temple and you are His temple. He has built this temple with lively stones. No human hand has had any part in the building of this temple. And so it is His glory alone that matters. His righteousness, His mercy His lovingkindness that shall surely be found in His surrendered obedient servants that the world might see a manifestation of God’s great love,. The Lord has established His throne in heaven and His Kingdom rules over all. (v 19) Bless the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless His holy name. (v1)

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Even the sparrow.

Posted by appolus on September 28, 2021

Psa 84:3  Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God.

No matter what station in life we have risen to, no matter what kind of dwellings we live in whether very rich or very poor, the same longing heart can long for the same thing. The richer Godly man thinking of the temple of God, and longing to be there. And in a sense being jealous of the little birds that undoubtedly nests in its eaves. The poorer man living in his humble abode, staring up at the night sky thinking the exact same thing. The psalmist reinforces this thought when he says that it is better to be a doorkeepr in the house of God than to dwell in the home of the wicked, a palace no doubt or something very extravagant. Just one day in the courts of the Lord is better than a thousand. The psalmist is saying that it’s a thousand times better to spend just one moment in the presence of God than to live in luxury for the rest of your life.

In Hebrews 11:25 we see a similar thought when we learn that Moses would rather suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for but a season. Moses, from the luxury of Pharaoh’s palaces would no doubt echo the psalmist jealousy over the sparrow nesting in the house of God. All those who have experienced this one moment in His presence, this one day of transformation will undoubtedly have this cry resounding in their heart “my soul longs yes even faints for courts of the Lord.” My heart and my flesh cry out for the Living God. These are the saints whose hearts are set on pilgrimage, whose hearts are set aright and whose spirits are steadfast within them.

For the Lord our God is a sun and shield to those who make their trust in Him. Even when we pass through the valley of Baca, the name we get from the word weeping, so a valley of tears. Often times this can be the valley of the shadow of death. No good thing does He withhold from those whose upright walk takes them into its depths. Their tears become as pools and rivers in the desert. They go from strength to strength in the power of the Lord. The Lord will rain down upon us grace and mercy and that rain waters the hearts of those who thirst after Him, as the deer panteth after the waterbrooks. This is the treasure of the one who desires to follow after the Lord. Follow Him dear saints and trust in Him with all of your heart and lean not upon your own understanding, but acknowledge Him in all of your ways and He will make your paths straight.(Prov 3:5)

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A steadfast heart and a right spirit.

Posted by appolus on September 26, 2021

Psalm 78:8 A generation that set not their heart aright, and whose spirit was not steadfast with God.

This is a clear warning as to what happens when you do not “set your heart,” properly, you spirit will not trust in God. Consider this saying “they set not their hearts aright.” This is a clear indication that it is incumbent upon us to make sure the conditions of our heart is good. This can only come in cooperation with God, He will not do this for you. And the beginning of a right heart is fear of God and thankfulness for what He has provided.

In this psalm it is recorded that they were delivered from Egypt. The sea was parted, they had a cloud over their heads by day and a fire by night. Water gushed forth from the rocks and bread fell from the heavens. Yet, they were not thankful, they still did not trust God. And they “tested God in their heart,’ their un-thankful hearts and asked for “the food of their fancy.” (v 19) They wanted more, they wanted better and they wanted it now. Does this not remind you of the prosperity gospel? And so we are told that God rained down meat on them “like the dust.” Feathered fowl more than the sands of the seas. How they must have thought, for a in time, that they were blessed of the Lord forgetting all the lessons of Job.

And so they ate and were filled, they gorged themselves and He gave them over to their own desires. “They were not deprived of their cravings.” (v30) Their desire and their obsessions were not for God but for the things that filled their stomachs. In our day it is houses and cars and status and that same “fancy,’ food. Yet even while it was in their mouth the wrath of God was stirred. And in verse 33 we see that “their days were consumed in futility and their years in fear.” To seek after the things of the world is to spend your life in futility. If your heart is not right with God you will spend your life in fear.

Yet the Lord has for Himself a people that He has taken possession of and they have found their Zion. A thankful people, a people who have set their hearts to trust in their God. Who, no matter what, are a thankful people. An obedient people. A people whose cravings and grand obsessions are not for the fancy foods and material possessions of this world but for God Himself. And He has set a King over us and His name is Jesus, the only begotten Son of God and the glory of God. And we are shepherded by Christ Himself, glory to God. Watch the condition of your hearts saints, keep it right, keep it watered by the living waters of God.

Posted in Christian, christian blog, christian living, church of england, church of scotland, Daily devotional, Devotions, discernment, Jesus, prosperity gospel, Prosperity Lie, revival, testimony, the crucified life, the deeper life, the gospel, the persectuted church, The presence of God, The Psalms, the remnant, The State of the Chuch and Manifest presence, the state of the church, theology | 1 Comment »

My hands are stretched out in the night.

Posted by appolus on September 23, 2021

Psa 77:2  In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord: my hand was stretched out in the night without ceasing: my soul refused to be comforted. 

Your soul will refuse to be comforted when only the Lord will do. Its the spirit within you that compels the soul to be unsatisfied with any natural solutions, especially when there are none to be found. Its at these times of desperation when our spirits are overwhelmed that we realize that nothing other than God Himself will do. We peer into the darkness, the abyss, the gross darkness that is all around us and we desperately seek the light. Picture the Lord when He is nailed to that cruel old tree, and the gross darkness descends and He cries out in anguish, the greatest anguish ever felt, thinking that He had been forsaken. Oh the agony of it. And then the moment of complete victory and the Lord gives over His Spirit into the hands of His Father.

The moment of victory comes at the end of darkness. When our hands are stretched out to heaven, without ceasing. I will not lower these trembling hands until I commit it all unto Him. Our poor Jesus could not lower His outstretched hands. They were held aloft for you. And then comes the light. You begin to remember all the works of the Lord in your life. You meditate on the goodness and the mercy of God that has followed you all the days of your life. You see the wonder of it. The waters of the deep see it and they are afraid, the Scriptures say. The depths tremble at His majesty. The skies cry out and the arrows of lightening flash across the heavens in a stupor.

And then, like the children of Moses, the sea parts before you, before your impossible situation, The darkness begins to recede as the light comes roaring into view on chariots of fire. It flees and is consumed by the utter holiness of our God. Lift those trembling hands tonight saints, is there anything too difficult for our God? The light from His glory causes the sun to look away in shame. He will flood your soul with living waters and you will cry Holy, Holy Holy. My anguish is drowned in glory and my anxiety is swept away by the tide of grace and mercy. Oh, the indescribable unfathomable atmosphere that is His presence. And suddenly. I am at peace.

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There is nothing I desire besides You!

Posted by appolus on September 21, 2021

Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever. (Psa 73:25-26)

Whom have I in heaven but thee? There is none upon earth that I desire but thee. My flesh fails but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. This is one of the greatest heart cries in all of the Psalms. It is often quoted but never really given context. The psalmist is living in a world where all he sees is the wicked prospering. They seem to have no real problems. They have more than they could wish for. They are not in trouble like other men. Nor are they plagued like other men. They always seem to be at ease and their riches only ever increase.

I would argue that nothing much changes from generation to generation. We could look around today and we would know plenty of people like that. And sometimes it may be tempting to think “Lord, why do the wicked prosper?” In contrast listen to the psalmists life . “For all day long I have been plagued and chastened every morning.” (verse 14) “Surely I have cleansed my heart in vain.” Don’t you love the honesty of the Scriptures? The psalmist just lays it out bare. And then comes the turn”Until I went into the sanctuary of God, then I understood….” The presence of God begins to turn his thinking around. He begins to see with an eternal perspective. He sees the end results of a life lived outside of God. He sees eternal destruction and he sees eternal glory for the children of God.

And now he is in the Spirit and he sees it all so clearly. He had been so foolish to be vexed by the rich and the ones who live their lives in ease. He sees that despite all of that that he walks in the presence of God. He is held by God Himself. He is led and he is guided by God and when it is all over he will be received into glory! He can cry out into the drama and the turmoil of his life, “you alone are my portion!” There is nothing at all in this whole earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart might fail me, but the Lord my God is my strength forever. This outer man may be perishing and I may have troubles in this world but the inner man is being renewed every day, praise God! This inner man, my heart, my soul, my spirit is being prepared to be received into glory!

Be encouraged saint, this world is not ours and we can never find a place in it. We are strangers and aliens in a far away land and we are on a monumental journey home. The road is narrow and fraught with danger. The valleys are deep and the river crossings are perilous. Storms abound along the way. Yet in all of that God is the strength of our hearts and He encourages His children along the way. His hand is upon you and His thoughts of you are more numerous than the sands of the seas shore. He awaits, He beckons, He calls. He whispers in the night watches. And the heartbeat of heaven is the beat of our hearts. Stay strong saints, our God is with us.

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There are no limits to His righteousness.

Posted by appolus on September 19, 2021

Psalm 71:14-15 But I will hope continually, And will praise You yet more and more. My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness, and Your salvation all the day, for I do not know their limits.

You can see the undulations of Davids heart as he goes back and forth. He makes much mention of his enemies and the things that ail him. It takes up a considerable amount of his thinking. His mind vacillates between complaints about his enemies and the glory of God. Yet in verse 14 we see the turn. The mind and the heart that was fixed between these two points is now firmly fixed upon God alone. And in this we find our own proper response to our trials and tribulations and infirmities. Let us not give the enemy nor the situation any ground. Let us hope in Him continually. That is a declaration. “I will praise you, (despite my circumstances) yet more and more,” that’s another declaration.

And now that the mind is focused on God, here we hear the results. “My mouth shall tell of your righteousness, and Your salvation all the day, for I do not know their limits.” All day long, night and day David’s heart and mind is now firmly fixed on God. And as his eyes settle upon the glory his wonder increases dramatically. He begins to see that there is no end to the righteousness of God. He is captivated by it. He is equally captivated by the salvation of His God, he realizes it has no beginning nor does it have an end. Glory to God. He then is encouraged in his own heart “I will go on in the strength of the Lord God.’ You see what happens when our focus is totally upon God? We see His strength, we see His power, it begins to grip every part of us.

And out of that flows praise. It’s now not because of his enemies that he does not want God to forsake him, he now does not want God to forsake him until “I declare your strength to this generation and Your power to everyone who is to come.” Glory to God. He says “Your righteousness Oh God is very high, You who have done great things Oh God,who is like You.” When we, in the midst of our storm, cast our eyes upon Jesus, forgetting what surrounds us, He elevates us above the tumult. He does this in our hearts and our minds and in our souls. We are not praying for deliverance, we are praying for the strength to continue to praise Him.

And just like Paul and Silas in the dungeon, who were not praying for deliverance rather they were singing the praises of their God, then down will come the power of God in our lives to the astonishment and marvel of all who see it. Glory to God, let us praise Him this day. This is our deliverance. This is our open door to heaven. This is how we see the glory of God and join in with that heavenly throng. “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God almighty.”

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Preserve my life.

Posted by appolus on September 16, 2021

Psalm 64:1 Hear my voice, O God, in my prayer: preserve my life from fear of the enemy. 

It is better to die by the hand of your enemy than to be taken captive by fear of him. A man dies just once, but someone taken captive by fear dies daily. And the death we are talking about is not the death of the old man so encouraged by the Scriptures, it is the opposite. To die daily to the flesh means that the spirit rises up. We decrease and the Lord in us increases. To die the death of a coward daily is to die spiritually. To be taken captive by fear is to be paralyzed spiritually. To be a prisoner to fear is to have your very thoughts taken captive. The ultimate distraction in this life comes when we are taken captive by fear in mind and body. The spirit man begins to die and the flesh rises up.

I would argue that this is what we are seeing all over the world right now in the midst of a pandemic. Fear has run amok. It has paralyzed us, literally, by shutting down everything. David cries out to the Lord in Psalm 64 verse one to “preserve my life,” from fear of the enemy. He does not asked to be spared on the battle-field. He is not asking for God to protect his physical life. No, he is asking that his life be revived in him, that his strength would be maintained in the midst of such troubling times. He wants his inner strength preserved, he wants it restored.

And so brothers and sisters. Be vigilant against fear, for it is the opposite of faith. Be diligent when it comes to your heart for out of that heart flows the issues of life. Do not let it be taken captive by fear. Be wise in these matters and see the strategy of the enemy of your soul. Ask the Lord for wisdom for He will give it to you. And in the receiving of this wisdom you shall have understanding. Remember, you have an ornament of grace that hangs upon your heart. You have a crown of glory that awaits you in the world to come. Fear the Lord in all of your ways, lean not upon your own understanding of what is unfolding in the world around you, but trust in Him. I say again, trust in Him and acknowledge Him and He shall direct your path.

Posted in bible, Christian, christian blog, christian living, Christianity, church, church of england, church of scotland, Daily devotional, Devotions, end times, End Times Eschatology, Eschatology - Study of the 'End Times', Jesus, revival, testimony, the crucified life, the deeper life, the gospel, the persectuted church, The presence of God, The Psalms, the remnant, The State of the Chuch and Manifest presence, the state of the church, theology, Uncategorized | 2 Comments »