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As the Lord's Day approaches each week the heart of a godly Pastor is searching for some precious portion of the Word of God to feed his people.

This week the Lord showed me something that I thought might be a blessing to some of you.

Someone let me know what you think!

--- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
II Timothy 2:15

 

 

 

 

 

 

THIS PAGE OF SHORT BIBLE STUDIES IS ABOUT FULL.  OTHER SUCH THOUGHTS WILL BE ADDED WEEKLY ... JUST AT DIFFERENT LOCATIONS ON THE WEB-SITE.

 

FRIDAY, MAY 27, 2005:

The fields of psychology and sociology both are today keen on the idea of teaching us how to live with all kinds of people.  How to tolerate our differences, especially in our interpersonal relationships.

Vast amounts of literature, some of it Christian in focus, instruct us on how to put up with "know-it-alls" or complainers or bullies or manipulators and a number of other groups as well.

Now much of this is well and good.

In fact, Scripture teaches us to "love one another."  Paul in Ephesians 4:2 even goes so far as to command us to "forbear" one another.  To tolerate (lovingly) each others' weaknesses!  He repeats his charge in Colossians 3:13 --- "Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye."

In Romans 15:1 the Apostle even expresses his teaching in terms of Christian maturity.  "We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves."

A spirit of harmony is critical to the work of the Lord!

However ...

                 ... there are some kinds of folks we are not told to tolerate!

Listen to these inspired words:  "But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat."  (1st Corinthians 5:11)

If a person SAYS he or she is saved ... and still lives a lifestyle of iniquity and debauchery, be on guard!

If they are "called" brethren ... and still commit immorality or drink alcohol or speak abusively or worship gods or goddesses or steal or covet ... DO NOT KEEP COMPANY WITH THEM!

Fornication and adultery involve sexual sins forbidden by Scripture.  We call them "affairs," God calls them sin!

Idolatry involves allowing anybody or anything to usurp God's place in one's life.

To "rail" is to speak abusively ... to slander or criticize severely.

To be a "drunkard" is self explanatory!  "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise."  Proverbs 20:1

An "extortioner" is one who steals by force.  Armed robbery, for example.

To not "keep company" with someone translates the Greek verb "sunanamignumi" which combines "sun" and "ana" and "mignumi," to mix!  (To fervently mix with someone!)  Do not hang around with them!  Do not associate with them!  "Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you."  2 Corinthians 6:17

(Now Paul is not taking about outright sinners here!  To totally avoid them would be to leave this world!  Paul IS talking about profession Christians who are living lives of hypocrisy and deceit!  Avoid them!  Do not tolerate them!  They will hurt you spiritually!)

Look again at our verse.  "But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat." 1st Corinthians 5:11

Notice that Paul even commands us not to eat with that crowd!  Don't even have a meal with them!  (And that would have included the Lord's Supper also!)

To put it succinctly ... the Bible here covers our lives in several key areas.

                                   1.  Our sexual habits!

                                   2.  Our social habits!   And even ...

                                   3.  Our Supper Habits!

Truly we are to glorify Christ in everything we do!

"And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him."  Colossians 3:17

                                                                             --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, APRIL 23, 2005:

There's something "special" about the praise of angels ... as they adore their Creator and God!

We Christians can all learn something about worship from them too!

God the Father said in Hebrews 1:4 --- "And let all the angels of God worship Him (Jesus)."

They do and they will for ever!

In some ways their worship is the fullest and the most excellent of all the adoration in the Bible!

Let me show you what I mean.

As far we we redeemed ex-sinners are concerned, our worship of God GROWS as we progress through the Book of Revelation.

In Revelation 1:6 John the Apostle (just a man saved by God's grace) begins uplifting our Lord.  He uses a two-fold doxology:  "And (Jesus) hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to Him (Jesus) be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen."  See, it's two-fold --- glory and dominion!

Next comes the worship of the 24 Elders (representing the saints of all the ages, probably 12 from the Old Testament and 12 from the New, the Patriarchs and the Apostles).  Revelation 4:11 quotes them.  "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created."  Now, it's three-fold blessing to God --- glory and honor and power!

And soon our human benedictions become even greater!  For in Revelation 5:13 we hear a four-fold one!  "And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever."  Now, "every creature" includes the redeemed!  Count these multiple thrusts of praise --- blessing, honor, glory and power!  See!  They're four-fold!

I am assuming that the longer we are in Heaven the more we Believers will really adapt to an ever fuller and purer worship of Almighty God and His Son our Saviour!

BUT while our worship is expanding and including more and more areas of glory ... the angels have already arrived!

Their praise of God is not two-fold or four-fold or even six-fold, but ... seven-fold!  Count its beauties:  "And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne ... saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing."  Revelation 5:11-12

1. Power!

2. Riches!

3. Wisdom!

4. Strength!

5. Honour!

6. Glory!

7. And Blessing!

Wow!

How majestic!

Seven ... how spiritually complete and perfect!

And here's some additional "good" news.  The verses to which I just alluded also say that along with those angels (the worship "instructors") ... someone else joins this great assembly of praise! 

Again:  "And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing."

I've capitalized "and the elders!"  Those earthly Believers ... seen by John as already being in Heaven and symbolizing all the redeemed ... are participating in this seven-fold poem of praise also!

We shall "arrive" at full and perfect and mature praise and worship "in the sweet by and by!"

In the mean time, keep on worshiping Him!

We are simply in training ... but even the learning is delightful!

I've heard of people who made school (education) their career, just advancing from one "degree" to another!

I never thought that alone would bring any pleasure ... until I enrolled in God's School ... the school of Worship!

I plan to stay in that one until I graduate ... and go to that great Baccalaureate Service in the sky!

What a Day that will be!

Praise the dear Lord!

                                                                              --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, APRIL 16, 2005:

While recently studying the "Queen of Sheba" passage in 1st Kings 10 and 2nd Chronicles 9 I was startled to notice an obvious "diversion" to the smooth flow of events!

The narrative seems to be "interrupted" with a two verse paragraph about "almug trees!"

Let me show you what I mean:

"And the navy also of Hiram, that brought gold from Ophir, brought in from Ophir great plenty of almug trees, and precious stones. And the king made of the almug trees pillars for the house of the LORD, and for the king's house, harps also and psalteries for singers: there came no such almug trees, nor were seen unto this day."  1 Kings 10:11-12

Why would the sacred historian want to do this?

Is there perhaps something special about these "almug trees" that warrant our attention?

Theologians and Bible scholars are unsure exactly what kind of tree this is. In my studies I've read everything from a sandalwood tree to a juniper.  It is said that over 15 different trees have been suggested through the years!

But this much is sure!

It is a precious tree, very valuable.

It is a durable tree, not given to decay.

And it is a fragrant tree, emitting a sweet odor.

I began thinking about that.

What TREE (in symbol and type now) would have to be inserted into a story about a lost woman meeting a Type of Christ?

Why, the Cross!

And the Cross was a tree!  Listen to Paul in Galatians 3:13 --- "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree."

And the Cross introduces a lot of hazy thinking to men of the world!  They can't figure it out!  They suggested a whole lot more than 15 different meanings for Calvary ... all of them being wrong but one!

And the Cross is a precious Tree!  (Excellent in character!) That's where we got saved, folks!  Where the Blood of Jesus was shed!

And the Cross is a durable Tree!  Its Message will not die ... ever!  That's because of Jesus, Who changes not!  "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever."  Hebrews 13:8

And the Cross is fragrant!  To an Almighty God above It is the "power of God unto salvation!"  To a repenting sinner on earth It is the only means of Life, eternal Life!  What sweet aroma it brings to the spiritual senses! Talking about the Cross and "hinting" at this sweet-smelling Affair, Isaiah says:  "Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise Him!"  Isaiah 53:10

I believe this almug tree surely pictures Calvary!

Then notice what Solomon did with the almug trees!

"And the navy also of Hiram, that brought gold from Ophir, brought in from Ophir great plenty of almug trees, and precious stones. And the king made of the almug trees pillars for the house of the LORD, and for the king's house, harps also and psalteries for singers: there came no such almug trees, nor were seen unto this day."

He used these trees for two purposes.

For "pillars!"

This word is used only here in all the Bible!  It means a "support!"  (And what supports everything in the Christian life?  THE CROSS!)  It's the support for both the Church and the home!  See the text ..."the House of the Lord and the King's house"

And "for harps and psalteries" for the singers too! 

Music!

And what gives us our song as Believers?  THE CROSS!

"But God forbid that I should glory (sing, praise, rejoice), save in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world." Galatians 6:14

The first singing in the Bible is in Exodus 15 ... just after God had redeemed His people from bondage!  (First the Cross ... then the singing!)

By the way, "harps" comes from a verb meaning "to twang" and "psalteries" comes from a noun meaning "skin-bag!"  Figure that one out on your own! Sure sounds like my kind of singing though!  An old "skin bag" like me can "twang" with the best of them!  All because of the Cross!

Oh, notice one more thing about those almug trees.  "There came no such almug trees, nor were seen unto this day."  There were none like those ... ever before or ever since!  Complete and unique excellence!  Unmatched! Unparalleled!  If that doesn't describe the Cross, I don't know what does!

David once said (1 Samuel 21:9) of the dead giant Goliath's sword:  "And David said, There is none like that; give it me."  I say that is also true of the Cross! 

Praise the dear Lord!

And thank God for Calvary!

                                                                                     --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, APRIL 9, 2005:

The verse is quite short.

It simply says:  "Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you."  It's found in 1st Peter 5:7.

That opening verb is interesting!  In Greek it's "epirripto" and means "to fling" something upon someone!  Or better yet "to hurl" something toward a person!

The Lord is inviting us to quickly and violently with great fervency throw our burdens and problems upon Him!

The little noun "care" translates the Greek word "merimna." It means that which pulls one apart!  That which distracts!  Isn't that really what fear and worry and fretfulness and distrust do?  They pull us to pieces!

Then the Lord assures us that he "cares" for us.  This verb is "melo" in Greek and means to have extra concern for someone!  To be interested in them!  To have real empathy!  It's in the present tense too!  God just keeps on caring and caring about us!

If I read Peter's short invitation rightly, through him our great God is inviting us to come to Him with all our heartaches and sorrows and problems!  All of them!

I see in 1st Peter 5:7 three things:

1.  I see OUR POSITION!  Jesus cares for us!  This text is written to saved people.  He died for us!  He washed our sins away!  He sent us the Holy Spirit!  He meets our needs!  He answers our prayers!  He in in Heaven right now interceding for us!  And He's coming again some day to get us!  What a POSITION we enjoy in Christ Jesus!

2.  I see OUR PROBLEMS!  We, though saved, still live in an ungodly world.  We also have an enemy, a roaring lion named the devil.  He wants to harm us.  We will experience trials and temptations and hardships of various kinds from time to time. Paul even taught the new Believers in his church to expect such difficulties!  Peter calls these problems "cares," thing that tear us to pieces emotionally and mentally and seek to hinder us spiritually!  The good thing is that God knows about our problems!  All about them!  Jesus is even "touched with the feeling of our infirmities!"  Hebrews 4:15

3.  Then, gladly, I see OUR PRIVILEGE!  We are invited, yea ... nearly commanded, to bring our problems to the Lord!  To prayerfully spread them out before the Throne of Grace!  (That's what godly King Hezekiah did in Isaiah 37:14 after receiving a threatening letter from a wicked King!  "And Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers, and read it: and Hezekiah went up unto the house of the LORD, and spread it before the LORD.")  Such praying or expressing of our burdens and doubts and frustrations (the noun "cares" means just that) is often in Scripture called lamentation!  (To "lament" means to wail or weep or moan!)  Pray when you're shouting the victory!  But also pray when you're discouraged and worn to a frazzle!) Bring your cares to Jesus!  What a privilege that is!

Now if I had the time and space, I'd show you two or three examples of folks bringing all their cares to the Lord!  It's not always the prettiest form of praying either!

Jeremiah --- "O LORD, thou hast deceived me, and I was deceived: thou art stronger than I, and hast prevailed: I am in derision daily, every one mocketh me."  Wow! Jeremiah 20:7

David --- "How long wilt thou forget me, O LORD? for ever? how long wilt thou hide thy face from me?"  Pretty bold language!  Psalm 13:1

Job --- "Oh that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat! I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments."  Mercy!  Job 23:3-4

And, really, even Jesus --- "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"  Matthew 27:46

In each case above the supplicants were "casting all their care upon the Lord, Who cared for them!"

One short verse ... three great truths ... four living examples!

Praise the Lord!

Have you prayed today?

                                                                           --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, MARCH 26, 2005:

Four times, and only four times does the Old Testament used the word "revived."  I mean in the past tense as shown here.

That fact alone makes me want to see what God revived in those long ago days!

Here they are.

There is a revived spirit in Genesis 45:27.  "And they (the sons of Jacob) told him (Jacob) all the words of Joseph, which he had said unto them: and when he saw the wagons which Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of Jacob their father revived."  All the years old Jacob had thought his son (his favorite son) was dead! Now he just learned it's not so!  And the "proof" of Joseph's well-being was wagonloads of gifts and blessings!  Sounded just like Joseph!  Hey, preachers, sometime preach on the "wagon loads" God has sent us too!  Here is a REVIVED SPIRIT!  Blessing from heaven above will revive any saved spirit!

Next is Judges 15:18-20.  Samson was tired.  He had just again defeated the enemy for Israel's sake!  "And he was sore athirst, and called on the LORD, and said, Thou hast given this great deliverance into the hand of thy servant: and now shall I die for thirst, and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised?  But God clave an hollow place that was in the jaw, and there came water thereout; and when he had drunk, his spirit came again, and he revived: wherefore he called the name thereof Enhakkore, which is in Lehi unto this day.  And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years."  Here is REVIVED STRENGTH!

The next one is amazing!  It deals with Elijah the great Man of God.  A little boy has died!  Elijah prayed!  "And the LORD heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived."  (1st Kings 17:22) Now we have a REVIVED SON!  Oh, how our young folks need (and many of them long for ... ) real Revival!  God can touch them too!

Lastly, Elisha (long since dead) works another miracle!  This one deals with his bones ... laying in his grave!  "And Elisha died, and they buried him. And the bands of the Moabites invaded the land at the coming in of the year.  And it came to pass, as they were burying a man, that, behold, they spied a band of men; and they cast the man into the sepulchre of Elisha: and when the man was let down, and touched the bones of Elisha, he revived, and stood up on his feet."  (2nd Kings 13:20-21)  A grown man ... revived, raised from the dead!  This is indeed a REVIVED SOUL! Here you might notice that when he revived ... he stood!  Oh, how we need Revival today .. to help us better stand for God!

Let's think about that last miracle just a bit.  A dead man (Elisha) who still has power ... even after death?  A dead man (Elisha) who is in reality now in paradise/heaven?  A dead man (Elisha) who had a double portion of he Spirit of God?  A dead man (Elisha) who is really more alive than ever?

Yes!  And that all reminds us of Jesus!

Jesus Who still has power ... even after death!  Who is now in Heaven!  Who has the Holy Spirit without measure!  Who is more alive (not to die again) than ever! 

Jesus Who, unlike Elisha, now has an empty tomb!

Think of it!  All these four "revivings" in the Old Testament because we have a REVIVED SAVIOUR!  A RESURRECTED SAVIOUR!

Here's the review:

A REVIVED SPIRIT (JACOB)!

A REVIVED STRENGTH (SAMSON)!

A REVIVED SON (WIDOW'S BOY)!

A REVIVED SOUL (UNNAMED MAN)!

ALL BECAUSE OF A REVIVED SAVIOUR!

That's Old Testament Revival!

And it sounds good to me!

                                                                                 --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, MARCH 19, 2005:

This week I again was interested in what the Bible says about REVIVAL!

I discovered that the King James Version uses the verb "revive" exactly 7 times (really 8 times but only in 7 references)!

Today I want to show you those times.

They draw a great picture of what one could call "Principles of Revival!"

Here they are in Bible order:

1.  Nehemiah 4:2 --- "And he spake before his brethren and the army of Samaria, and said, What do these feeble Jews? will they fortify themselves? will they sacrifice? will they make an end in a day? will they revive the stones out of the heaps of the rubbish which are burned?"  These words fall from the wicked lips of Sanballat, an enemy of God's people.  He is mocking God's work!  Yet he unknowingly teaches us something.  He mentions the PLACE God plans to send revival!  His House!  The Temple here!  Revival deals with God's Own children!  And it begins in their Churches and their homes and their hearts!  Again, here's ... The PLACE of Revival!

2.  Psalm 85:6 --- "Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?"  Here we see another principle of revival.  Why?  Why will God send revival? That His people may "rejoice" in Him!  This reveals ... The PRAISE of Revival!  In fact it (maybe even deeper yet) reveals ... The PURPOSE of Revival!  That purpose is the Glory of God ... that He will be praised!

3.  Psalm 138:7 --- "Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies, and thy right hand shall save me."  Now there's danger lurking in this verse!  See the enemies!  Yet the Psalmist cries for God to revive him ... thereby bringing safety!  Here clearly is ... The PROTECTION of Revival!

4.  Isaiah 57:15 --- "For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones."  God will not just arbitrarily revive anyone!  There are qualifications!  We here find out whom God revives, the humble ones!  "Contrite" means broken into pieces, crushed!  Here we specifically see ... The PEOPLE of Revival!

5.  Hosea 6:2 --- "After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight."  Now Hosea is no doubt here looking to the future. Future restoration and revival for Israel.  But look more closely ... these words are framed as a promise!  God will revive His people in His time!  Let's call this one what it truly is ... The PROMISE of Revival!

6.  Hosea 14:7 --- "They that dwell under his shadow shall return; they shall revive as the corn, and grow as the vine: the scent thereof shall be as the wine of Lebanon."  The picturesque prophet Hosea is again at work here.  He compares revival to the spring time of the year!  The crops are growing with health and vigor, both corn and grapes!  These are respectively the sources of strength and joy!  Now we have Biblically ... The PICTURE of Revival!

7.  Lastly, Habakkuk 3:2 --- "O LORD, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O LORD, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy."  Here is God's acting in a way different than we've ever imagined!  His reviving now involves judgment!  Read the rest of Habakkuk 3 and you will see what I mean!  Part of God's future plans for revival include rapturing the Church, saving Israel (after 7 years of tribulation), and destroying the earth (only to build a new one)!  Wow!  God's pattern for revival does not always fit ours!  But here in Habakkuk we definitely see ... The PROGRAM for Revival!  It must be done God's Way.  That way varies from time to time and place to place.  God cannot be reduced to a single mode of revival operation!  His principles remain the same, but His particulars change! 

Seven BIBLE ways God works in Revival!

That's why I've called them PRINCIPLES OF REVIVAL!

I pray some Preacher reads these lines and gets some thought with which to feed his dear people tomorrow!

Man of God, as you study today the Holy Spirit sure can show you some nuggets in these 7 verses!

Enjoy!

                                                                                --- Dr. Mike Bagwell  

 

 

SATURDAY, MARCH 12, 2005:

An old saying goes something like this:  "More things are wrought by prayer than this world ever dreams!"

Let's analyze that sentence in the light of God's Word.

*  Prayer is one main way to defeat the Devil!  So believed Jesus!  "And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."  Luke 22:32

*  Prayer is the way sinners are brought into the Family of God!  "And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner."  (Luke 18:13)   The Father prophetically said to the Son in Psalm 2:8 --- "Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession."  (Souls to be saved!)

*  Prayer is one main way to acquire Wisdom too!  James 1:5 tells us:  "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him."

*  Prayer is the way a backslider gets restored.  James 5:19-20 tells us:  "Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins."  This is a saved man who has "erred!"  James classifies him as a "brother."

*  Prayer is how the saints of God are strengthened!  "Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak."  Matthew 26:41

*  Prayer is how to get more workers into God's fields of service!  (Preachers, Teachers, Evangelists, Missionaries and others!)  "Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest."  Matthew 9:38

*  Prayer is how we stay faithful ... and keep from quitting!  "And he (Jesus) spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint." (Luke 18:1)  If we pray, we will not faint!  If we faint, we have not prayed!

*  Prayer is one main way to see sick folks made well!  "Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him." James 5:14-15

*  Prayer is a key move in handling our problems!  "For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.  Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them."  Mark 11:23-24

Let me sum things up with one more great verse:  "Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not."  Jeremiah 33:3

Now ... back to our opening "quote!"

"More things are wrought by prayer than this world ever dreams!"

After reviewing those precious verses ... let me put it this way:  More things are wrought by prayer than Brother Bagwell ever dreamed!

Amen!

Let's try to adopt Paul's motto and ... "Pray without ceasing!"  1st Thessalonians 5:17

If anyone finds this little Article helpful in any way, let me know.  Sometimes I wonder the impact (if any) our secondary Pages have.  Your in-put would be appreciated.

                                                                             --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, MARCH 5, 2005:

Yesterday I got to thinking about the POWER of God again!

I asked myself ... What are the most astounding Bible statements about God's almighty Power?

I came up with a short list, as the Spirit reminded me of a few things that both Paul and Peter  said.

To me the greatest single statement in the New Testament (for the Believer in Christ) about Power is found in Ephesians 1.  The great Apostle Paul mentions his desire that "we may know ... the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His Own right hand in the heavenly places!"  Wow!  Paul just said that the POWER available to us Christians is the same power that raised Jesus from the dead!  To me, that is awesome!

Second on my list is Ephesians 3:20.  Paul speaks of God as One Who "is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us!" Think of that!  He has placed within us the power (Holy Spirit) Who can do MORE ... MUCH MORE ... than we will ever be able to ask or think! 

Then I have one of Peter's verses in mind.  He tells us that we are "kept" saved by the power of God!  Writing to Believers he says:  "Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time."  (1st Peter 1:4)  If God's Power keeps me saved, I am secure!

Lastly I would include 2nd Peter 1:3 where the Preacher tells us that God has, by His Power, given us ALL we need to live for Him!  "According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness!"  That's amazing! Everything I need for godly living!

Let's put my "list" together.

We have access to Power that's almighty!  (It raised Jesus from the dead!)

We have Power that's ABOUNDING!  (More than we can ask or think!)

We have Power that's ABIDING!  (It keeps us saved day by day!)

And we have Power that's AMPLE!  (It gives us ALL things we need to live for God!)

Preachers, your list will no doubt differ from mine ... but it sure is an interesting thought we've pursued together, isn't it?

What are the greatest POWER verses to you?

                                                                                    --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2005:

Joshua 1:8 is one of the greatest verses in the Bible for the Christian!

"This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success."

It gives us 3 "rules" for absolute success in God's eyes!

It assures us that, under certain conditions, our "way" can  be abundantly "prosperous!"  This Hebrew word for "prosperous" ("tzsalach" in Hebrew) comes from a root verb that means "to break out" or "to flow over" or "to "rush forward" (as in rapidly advancing)!  Note this:  It is used as a verb to describe the Holy Spirit coming upon certain Old Testament Believers!  (Judges 14:6 and 19 and Judges 15:14 and 1st Samuel 10:10 and 11:6 and 16:13 ... each time used of the Holy Spirit!)

It looks to me like God equates "prosperity" with the "filling" of the Holy Spirit!

And the verb "have good success" is "sakal" and means to understand (in a wise godly sense) or to have prudence and skill at holy living!

These are not necessarily "money" and "fame" terms here!  There's no "health and wealth" required in any of these words!

This is success and blessing IN GOD'S EYES AND ACCORDING TO HIS TERMS!

BUT ... what is necessary to enjoy these precious blessings from the Lord?

Three things:

1. You get into the Word of God!  That means more than just reading it too.  To "meditate" implies to get it in your heart and mind and let it "talk" to you all day (and all night) long!  The Hebrew verb "hagah" literally means to talk in a low voice or to mumble!

2. Get the Word of God into you!  That's also a dominant idea in "meditation" here.  Scripture has been so "internalized" that you KNOW it well.  You have via the Spirit's teaching interpreted and personalized it for godly purposes!

3. Then, obey what you have learned from Scripture.  Be a "doer" of the Word! Obedience to the Voice of God ... either through the written Word or through the Living Spirit Who teaches us the Word!

And those three areas of implementation involve three body parts:

1. One's mouth!  (Talk God's Word!)

2. One's heart!  (Learn God's Word!  Internalize it!)

3. One's feet!  (Obey God's Word!)

I will guarantee you this.  God will do what He says in Joshua 1:9.  Try Him and see! Now I wouldn't say that without having Bible precedent!  God, in reference to His promise about tithing says:  "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it." Malachi 3:10

Three steps to abundant blessings from God!

This article (on Joshua 1:8) has been well worth our time folks!

Of course that's true of ALL the Bible's 31,102 verses!

                                                                      --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2005:

One of the finest verses in Scripture concerning the POWER of God is found in the Book of Acts.

"But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth."  Acts 1:8

Notice that here spiritual power is a GIFT!  "Ye shall receive power!"  It cannot be earned or bought or stolen.  The verb "receive" translates the Greek word "lambano."  This means to take or lay hold of!  No idea of force is present either! However, let me say this.  Grammatically the word indicates that God makes the power available ... but we must at least have enough desire to "lay hold" of it!  ("Dechomai" is the Greek verb that's more passive.  It would have suggested power being GIVEN whether you wanted it or not!  And "haireomai" is the verb that's more aggressive!  It means something like ... "To take for oneself!"  We can never receive power ... or seize it either ...  without God being willing to give it!)

Next notice the GROUNDS of that power!  It is distributed by God the Holy Spirit! He is the "Dynamo" of God!  Here He is called the Holy Ghost.  "Hagios Pneuma" is the Greek Name.  The old-timers used the term Ghost instead of Spirit for Him because to them a Ghost was the Presence of one who had died ... but returned! They actually viewed the Holy Spirit as Jesus in Essence working in them and through them!  Wherever you see the Holy Spirit working in liberty ... there you will also find the great POWER of God!  To have more POWER ... be more yielded to the Holy Spirit!

Now let's look at the GRAMMAR of this power!  The Greek word here is "dunamis" and means strength, ability or might.  This root word gives us English words such as dynamo, dynamic, dynamite and a host of others.  Technically it (being in a family of about 5 or 6 different but synonymous words for power or strength) has the idea of "inherent" power.  That means power within!  Power which you were granted!  Not borrowed power or bought power ... just (as it were) birthed power!

Our verse proceeds to reveal the GOAL of this power.  It seeks to make us "witnesses" for our dear Lord and Saviour!  The noun here is "martus," which gives us primarily the word "martyr!"  It means one whose very life illustrates his faith and beliefs and convictions!  (I guess the power to be burned at the stake is "witness" enough!)  God needs such "witnesses' today to His Deity, His Plan of Salvation, His method of separated living, His strength to answer prayer, His comfort in trials and sorrows, His abiding Presence, and His grace to die!  Plus so much more!  That kind of "witness" can only be produced via Holy Spirit Power. This is real Christianity!

Lastly observe with me the geography of this power!  To the folks whom Luke is writing, the power began at Jerusalem, their home area!  Then it spread outward in ever widening circles until it literally reached Rome and beyond, the uttermost parts of the world!  God wants us to live for him ... purely and sincerely and transparently ... everywhere we go!  And that, my friend, is powerful living!

Here's the whole verse again:  "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth."

Amen!

Let's try to live by it!

By the way, the whole verse in reality it a GUARANTEE also!  That's because it is a promise from God!   You can depend on it!  "For he is faithful that promised." (Hebrews 10:23)  And furthermore as Joshua reminded the Israelites:  "Not one thing hath failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spake concerning you; all are come to pass unto you, and not one thing hath failed thereof."  (Joshua 23:14) You can base your whole Christian life on Acts 1:8. God has so promised!  (And that IS a guarantee!)

                                                                          --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, JANUARY 29, 2005:

I recently studied the miracle of the "parting" of the Red Sea!

It's recorded in Exodus chapters 14 and 15.

I believe this is a literal historical event, that the waters actually divided to allow a small nation (2,000,00 or so Jews) to pass safely through its midst!

I was amazed to learn one particular "nuance" of hermeneutical information.  It turns out to be held by many Bible scholars, but was new to me!

I quote C. H. Macintosh, a fundamental teacher of the 19th century, who believed the Red Sea opened progressively as the children of Israel marched (not all at once, but a little bit at a time) ... "God never gives guidance for two steps at a time.  I must take one step, and then I get light for the next.  This keeps the heart in abiding dependence upon God."

Here's how the King James Bible records it all:  "And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left."  Exodus 14:21-22

Well, however the waters divided (all at once or a little at a time as Israel marched) ... they DID divide!  They (the waters of a whole sea) obeyed the voice of the Lord!

But that "one-step-at-a-time" thing is Biblical!

Let me show you what I mean:

In 2 Corinthians 4:16 Paul tells us that our Lord renews us (sends us spiritual strength) "day by day!"  Here it is:  "For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day."

In Luke 11:3 the Lord supplies our needs "day by day!"  Look for yourself:  "Give us day by day our daily bread."  (Not a week or month at a time!)

And just think of God's blessings!  "Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah."  Psalm 68:16

And we've not even mentioned the Lord's Presence with us!  That's daily, hourly, minute by minute!  Unending!  "And, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen."  Matthew 28:20

Plus ... the Lord saves sinners daily!  "And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved."  Acts 2:47

And what about our duty or obedience to Him?

Remember Calvary day by day!  "Now this is that which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually."  Exodus 29:38

Here's an example of praising God day by day!  "And the children of Israel that were present at Jerusalem kept the feast of unleavened bread seven days with great gladness: and the Levites and the priests praised the LORD day by day, singing with loud instruments unto the LORD."  2 Chronicles 30:21

Nehemiah 8:18 tells of studying the Bible day by day!  "Also day by day, from the first day unto the last day, he read in the book of the law of God. And they kept the feast seven days; and on the eighth day was a solemn assembly, according unto the manner." Also Acts 17:11 --- "These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so."

We are to encourage each other day by day!  "But exhort (encourage) one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin."  Hebrews 3:13

We are to mortify our old flesh day by day!  Paul did!  "I die daily."  1st Corinthians 15:31

But, thank God, be sure of this ... some DAY Jesus is coming again also!  The old song said: "Some golden daybreak, Jesus will come!"

Until, then ... we shall just live one day at a time!

And it's a promise, His Grace will be sufficient!

                                                                                    --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, JANUARY 22, 2005:

The Preacher just made this passing statement:  "The Bible likens Satan to five different animals."  That caught my attention.

What are they, those animals?

Of course there is the "serpent."  (Genesis 3:1, where that word is first used in Scripture, calls him "subtil."  The word means sly, sneaky!)

Then there is Matthew 13 where the devil is a "bird" trying to steal the seed of God's Word!  (Compare Matthew 13:19 with Luke 8:5.)  Birds fly "in the air."

Next he's a "wolf" attacking the flock!  (John 10:12)  The word "wolf" (in Greek = "lukos") means "white!"  Wickedness appearing as purity!

Plus he's a "lion" seeking whom he may devour!  "Devour" means literally "to swallow down!"  (Greek ="katapino")  In 1st Peter 5:8 the Apostle calls Satan an "adversary."  That's an opponent, an accuser in a lawsuit.

Lastly the devil is a "dragon."  See Revelation 12.  There he's a particular hater of Israel and the dear Lord Jesus Christ! 

(Now I'm not saying that some of you creative Preachers can't find other "animals" that picture the devil!  I think all "parasites" do!  This however is a good basic list.)

Let's review:

The devil is a:

                         Serpent!  In Genesis 3 he seduces!

                         Bird!  In Matthew 13 and Luke 8 he steals!

                         Wolf!  In John 10 he shines!  (Wolf means "white!")

                         Lion!  In 1 Peter 5 he seeks!  (Or he swallows!)

                         And a Dragon!  In Revelation 12 he succumbs!  (He's defeated!)

Thank God for the Victory!

"But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." 1st Corinthians 15:57

                                                                             --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

 

SATURDAY, JANUARY 15, 2005:

It's one of my favorite verses in the whole Bible!

It deals with the salvation of one's soul!

"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life."  John 5:24

First, notice with me the AFFIRMATION built into this great statement!  "Verily, Verily," Jesus says!  In Greek the words used here for "verily" are identical.  They are spelled (literally) "amen!"  They mean "truly, truly!"  Jesus is strengthening this Promise by His Own testimony to it!  So even Jesus said "amen" again and again!" (25 times in the New Testament)

Then notice the AUDITION necessary for salvation!  (Man does nothing to be saved ... understand me.  But ... He must have his ears "opened" or he will never come to the Lord!)  Without a sinner's "hearing" the Word of God in its convicting power ... he or she will never desire to "come" unto the Lord Jesus for salvation.  Jesus said seven times in Revelation 2 and 3 ... "He that hath an ear, let him hear."

But the hearing is just the beginning!  One must also believe!  The verb means to lean upon Jesus, to trust Him, to lay all in His Divine "lap" for the salvation of one's soul!  Now keep this in mind.  It is possible to believe in vain!  I base this statement on something Paul preached in 1st Corinthians 15:2 --- "By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.Wow!  This is the ACTION of salvation!  This sincere Spirit-anointed act of trust must occur!

Then see the APEX of it all!  (The highest point!)  One will be given eternal life! Eternal Life to enjoy fellowship with the Son and communion with the Holy Spirit and to forevermore glorify the Father on His Throne!  The verb "hath" is interesting! It is "echo" and is here in the present tense!  He has It and he (the repentant sinner) holds it (eternal life) RIGHT NOW and that possession continues day by day  perpetually!  (It is a gift of God to the believing soul!)

Next there is an acquittal here!  The ex-sinner shall see no condemnation!  The noun is "krisis" and means judgment!  No hell!  No eternal death!  No separation from God!  Hallelujah!  The wrath of the Almight no longer rests upon the poor (but now saved) soul!  (John 3:36 --- "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.")  Amazing!

And notice ... the verse closes with an APPOSITION!  That's a word used in English grammar that means "a term which re-explains a thought earlier used in a sentence."  First we were told that the converted sinner "has everlasting life."  Now we are told (re-told really) that he or she "is passed from death unto life!"  Either way, it sounds great!

The curse of sin, because of Jesus' Blood shed on Calvary, is removed!  "For the wages of sin is death."  (Romans 6:23a)  And we have passed from death unto life, Eternal Life!  "But the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."  (Romans 6:23b)

John 5:24 is a salvation verse if one ever existed!  And it's a Promise from God!

Preach it!

                                                                       --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 11, 2004:

I first saw this yesterday.  I have pondered it a bit through the morning.  And here are some of my conclusions.  I base them solely on the Word of God!

Occasionally God either promises He will ... or He just does! 

What, Preacher?

He opens the Heavens!

Listen to Isaiah's great prayer, one born in a longing  for God's Presence and for true Revival!

Isaiah 64:1 --- "Oh that thou wouldest rend the heavens, that thou wouldest come down, that the mountains might flow down at thy presence."  (The verb "rend" means to tear open!)  He is asking the Lord to come to earth!

Here are the heavens opened for God's PRESENCE!

Then one day in Jesus public ministry (just as it began) the Lord opened the heavens for sure!  Jesus was being baptized!  Matthew 3:16 tells us about it.  "And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him."  The Holy Spirit descends upon Jesus in a visible manner!

Here the heavens are opened for God's POWER! 

But there is yet another day coming, a day in which the heavens will open yet again! John tells us about it in Revelation 19:11-16.  "And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.  His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.  And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.  And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.  And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS."  Jesus is coming again!

Here the heavens are opened to fulfill God's PROMISE!

Three "openings" of Heaven!

Each is a blessing.

However, there could be none of these had not One Other Thing been torn open!

This event happened while Jesus was on Calvary!

Matthew 27:51 --- "And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent." 

Through Jesus' Blood Atonement and His Death on the Cross, access was opened to the presence of the Lord Himself!

According to Paul in Hebrews 10:20 that "veil" represents Jesus' Flesh too!  "By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh."

Jesus' very Body being OPENED has made possible all the other openings of Heaven on our behalf!  It makes possible our eternal salvation!

This opening secures God's PARDON!

Glory to His dear Name!

By the way, because of Calvary, go to church tomorrow and worship Him fervently. And when the offering is received, be sure to place your tithes in the plate.  Such a practice will "open the doors of Heaven" for you yet again!  So guarantees Malachi 3:10 --- "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it."

Here the heavens are opened with God's PROVISION!

Again, all I know to say is, Praise the Lord!

I thought someone might be able to glean a thought or tow from this little meditation.  May it spiritually feed a hungry soul in the days ahead!

(Notice the five "P" words!  Presence, Power, Promise, Pardon and Provision!  Some of you love to alliterate!)

                                                                                 --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

 

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2004 ... A SERMON ON "HOLINESS"

Out text today is found in 2 Corinthians 7:1 --- "Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God."

Let's examine its every word carefully!

First, I see some PROMISES regarding Holiness!  "Having therefore these promises!"

The I see the PREMISE regarding Holiness!  "Dearly beloved!"  It's only for Believers!

Next is the PATHWAY to Holiness!  "Let us cleanse ourselves!"

Then is the PERIL to Holiness!  "Filthiness of the flesh and spirit" 

And finally we note the PERFECTING of Holiness!   "Perfecting holiness!"  Bring it to maturity!

And all this is done within the PARAMETERS of Holiness!  "In the fear of the Lord!"

Wow!

That all just naturally falls into place it seems!

Now we know God saved us to be holy!

Leviticus 20:7 commands us:  "Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God."

Peter quotes that in 1 Peter 1:15-16.  "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."

And isn't it amazing that the Comforter the Lord has provided us is called (God) the HOLY Spirit!  That Name occurs 7 times in the Bible! 

For example Paul reminds us to "Grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption."  Ephesians 4:30

Now, think with me how the Promises of God help make us holy! 

Philippians 4:13 --- "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

1 Corinthians 10:13 --- "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it."

1 John 3:3 --- "And every man that hath this hope (of Jesus' Second Coming) in him purifieth himself, even as He (Jesus) is pure."

Plus hundreds more of God's purifying promises!  (What a series of sermons they would be!)

Amazing!

The only class of people who can be pure are the saved, the dearly beloved of God, members of His Family!  "And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?"  1 Peter 4:18

But part of becoming holy involves something we do!  We must "cleanse ourselves!" See 1st John 1:9 --- "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."  And James 4:8 instructs us: "Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners (James' name for fleshly saints even); and purify your hearts, ye double minded."  I think this is part of what Paul had in mind when he said:  "I die daily."  See 1st Corinthians 15:31.

Also the Greek word used here for "filthiness" is interesting.  It is in Greek spelled "molusmos" and means soiled or stained or made vile.  It comes from the verb "moluno" ... to soil or make dirty!   And that verb comes from a word ("melas") that means black!  Its the word the old Greeks and Romans used when one was walking down the street in town and a resident in a second floor villa poured the contents of his overnight "potty" chamber down on into the gutter below ... some of it splashing on your fresh white toga!  That was "filthiness!"  (This surely shows God's word picture for sin!)

The word then slowly developed into a term for moral impurity as well.

Yet notice also that this "filthiness" Paul applies to both the body (the "flesh") and the spirit!

Fleshly sins are abundantly apparent.  Lust and strong drink and wild parties and all the rest!

But "spiritual" filthiness ... what's that?

Maybe our dirty hearts that spue forth all those words of gossip and slander and hatred week after week!

Maybe our jealous wills that grieve when anyone else prospers!

Maybe the vile thoughts that scamper about in too many minds of so-called saved people!

If we are truly redeemed we had better get busy growing in holiness!

"Perfecting" holiness means to "epiteleo" it!  "Teleo" means to reach the goal, to become mature, to be "fully furnished" as a Believer!  The prefix "epi" merely intensifies the word ... with the added thought of "within" being added!  Maturing within one's very being!

And as a present participle, the verb "perfecting" tells us this will be a life-long process!  Always striving to become more and more holy!

Of course we can't do this on our own!

Jesus IS our holiness! 

1st Corinthians 1:30 thunders forth:  "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption."

Glory!

We are to appropriate and internalize and live off the very Person of Jesus, the Holy One of God!

And this striving for holiness will only be done in one atmosphere!  It will exclusively be done within the parameter of the "FEAR OF THE LORD!"  A reverent respect for the things of Heaven and of the Word and of the Saviour!

One will not hunger for holiness in the atmosphere of Hollywood or Las Vegas or San Francisco or New York or Atlanta.  Only in the "Fear of the Lord" will holiness prosper!

Listen to Jesus in Matthew 5:6 --- "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled."

It is so!

Preachers, I thought you might enjoy this little Bible thought from 2 Corinthians 7 as you prepare for tomorrow's messages.

                                                                                 --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

 

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 30, 2004 ... A SERMON ON THE "FACE" OF JESUS:

I came across the old Book in a Bibliography (That's a book that lists other books!) My Bibliography lists over 5,000 titles about our precious Lord!  Many are long out of print now, but some of them our local "inter-library loan" librarian has been able to find! 

One such Title is "The Face of Our Lord."  It is written by a preacher named Paul Rees.  It was first published in 1951 by Eerdmans Publishers.

This Pastor simply went through the New Testament and looked for verses that mentioned the Face of Jesus!

I thought I would at least share his main points with you today!

THE DREADFUL FACE!   For this thought the preacher used 1st Peter 3:12 which says:  "The face of the Lord is against them that do evil." 

THE DAUNTLESS FACE!  Here he referred to Luke statement about Jesus:  "And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem."  Luke 9:51

THE DAZZLING FACE!  Matthew 17:2 --- "And (Jesus) was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light."

THE DUTIFUL FACE!  Here Jesus is in Gethsemane.  "And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."

THE DESPISED FACE!  This is near the time of His crucifixion.  "Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands." Matthew 26:67

AND ... THE DIVINE FACE!  Paul mentions this in 2 Corinthians 4:6.  "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."

They say you can tell a lot by looking into a face!  It is indeed true in this case!

I think those thoughts might make a good skeleton on which one could hang a lot of spiritual "meat" to feed God's people!

                                                                        --- Dr. Mike Bagwell

 

 

 

 

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