Monday, August 21, 2017

2 Peter 1:10-21

Jer 37:17  Now King Zedekiah sent for Jeremiah and took him out of prison; and in his palace the king secretly asked him and said, "Is there a word from the LORD?" And Jeremiah said, "There is!"
·         God, me what’s going on.
·         God, tell me why this is going on.
·         God, tell me what to do.

Remember that old commercial: When E.F. Hutton speaks…People wanted to know what E.F. Hutton said because his opinion had credibility. You listen to whom you trust.

When you read the creation story do you come back with the assurance that God did all that?
When you read of waters of the Red Sea separating so the people of Israel could walk across, do you say, absolutely?

When you read of fire coming from Heaven to consume an altar, fire in a furnace not burning three men, lions shutting their hungry mouths so they won’t eat God’s prophet, do you say, certainly?

When you read of Jesus walking on water, calming storms, raising Lazarus or dying for our sins and coming back alive in resurrection, do you say, of course!?

When you read: cast your cares upon Him for He cares for you, or He will keep you in perfect peace if your mind is stayed upon Him, or those who wait upon the Lord will mount up with wings like eagles, run and not be weary, or He will give you peace that passes your ability to understand, do you say, yes?

How much confidence do we have that the Bible can be trusted to be true? If it tells us of history, is that history accurate? If it tells us of people, did those people exist? If it tells us of an event, did that event happen? If it gives us a promise, can that promise be relied on?

Steel workers on high-rise buildings have a rule: don’t lean into the wind. There is a resistance you can feel when the wind is blowing, but when it stops and you have been using that wind to keep your balance, you’re going to fall.

Are God’s promises substantial enough for us to count on or are they puffs of wind that hold us for a minute then vanish, leaving us off balance and falling?

2Pe 1:10  Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble;

Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, (Jude 1:24)

Not stumbling has a lot to do with standing firm and standing firm has a lot to do with where we’re standing.

God has built a platform, a foundation for our faith, to stand on. It’s called: His faithfulness. We don’t stand on our ability to believe things but on Him to be faithful in who He is, what He does and what He says.

When He says My Words will accomplish what I intend, we know immediately those words are backed by His faithfulness not upon our ability to believe them. They are not floating in some hope-so realm of wishful, happy thought thinking but words energized by the One who said them. In fact, they are true whether we believe them or not.

As soon as we see these three together: who He is, what He does and what He says, all sharing the same faithfulness, we begin to see Scripture differently.

2Ti 3:16-17 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.

What is Scripture? The Bible. God’s Word, breathed from God’s Spirit, through the mind and heart of perhaps as many as 40 people, over a span of 1600 years, moved to write what God wanted written so that that word could be counted on to make us adequate and equipped for every good work. He used kings, prophets, priests, a farmer, a tax collector, fishermen, a radical zealot, disciples, historians, a doctor. But all had one thing in common: moved by God.

That’s where our confidence comes from. His words have power to accomplish what He wants, purpose to fulfill His will and specificity to target the circumstances of our lives.

2Pe 1:16-19 For we did not follow cleverly devised tales when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of His majesty. For when He received honor and glory from God the Father, such an utterance as this was made to Him by the Majestic Glory, “This is My beloved Son with whom I am well-pleased”—and we ourselves heard this utterance made from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain. So we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts.
We have to pay attention in the dark. When you turn out the light you lose sight of what’s there. When you lose sight you stumble. When we enter the dark times, we can lose sight of who God is, what He’s done and what He says. But if we seek His light we won’t stumble. Never doubt in the darkness what God has shown you in the light.

A Scripture you’ve read thousands of times may suddenly become your word from the Lord.

2Pe 1:20 But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one's own interpretation,

2Pe 1:21  for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.

Movement of the Holy Spirit to produce Scripture.
Movement of the Holy Spirit to protect Scripture.
Movement of the Holy Spirit to illuminate Scripture.

Satan’s attack: to discredit Scripture. Did God really say that? Did God mean that? Can you trust what God said? It’s not all true, only some of it. It isn’t the word of God, it contains the word of God. That’s man’s opinion. That’s only for those people back then. Don’t let Satan deceive you!

God is God or He isn’t. God does what He does or He doesn’t. God’s word is true or it’s not. Can’t have one without all three.

Practical exercise:
Php 4:1  Therefore, my beloved brethren whom I long to see, my joy and crown, in this way stand firm in the Lord, my beloved.
Standing firm on His faithfulness.

Php 4:4  Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!
      How can I rejoice? My circumstances have no room for rejoicing.

Php 4:5  Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near.
      What do I know about the presence of God?
·         He will never leave you nor forsake you.
·         He will be with you to the very end.
·         He is the God of all comfort.
·         He will accomplish what concerns you.
·         He, who began a good work in you, will bring it to completion.
·         He will supply all your needs.

Php 4:6  Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
      Nothing going on should be allowed to take me into anxiety—hopelessness.
      In everything not for everything.
            God does not plan everything that happens but in everything that happens, God
            has a plan.
      He is waiting to hear the extent of your faith.
#What do I have to do, thank Him for what’s going on? No. I thank Him that in what’s going on, He has been and will be faithful in my life.

Php 4:7  And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Php 4:8  Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.

Php 4:9  The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
Practice: make them a habit.

  1. If God isn’t God, doesn’t do what He does, and His Word isn’t true, I have no hope.
  2. If only part of any of this is true, how am I supposed to know which part I can count on.
  3. If it’s all true, I can settle my concerns and stand upon God’s faithfulness in all circumstances.
  4.  If it is all true, I can say, without doubt: It is Well with My Soul.

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