Friday, April 14, 2017

A Story About Forgiveness

Here's an inspiring story of two friends who learn something special about forgiveness together. It reflects those experiences in our lives that get us thinking: "should I hold on to this, or just forget about it"? I hope the lesson in this inspiring story will help you answer some of these questions, as well as help whoever you share it with:

Click Here to watch the video.


When To Be Silent

Lord, help me to know when and what to speak, and when to be silent.

the Bible says...

1. Be silent In the heat of anger - (Prov 14:17)

2. Be silent When you don't have all the facts - (Prov 18:13)

3. Be silent When you haven't verified the story - (Deut 17:6)

4. Be silent If your words will offend a weaker person - (1 Cor 8:11)

5. Be silent When it is time to listen - (Prov 13:1)

6. Be silent When you are tempted to make light of holy things - (Eccl 5:2)

7. Be silent When you are tempted to joke about sin - (Prov 14:9)

8. Be silent If you would be ashamed of your words later - (Prov 8:8)

9. Be silent If your words would convey the wrong impression - (Prov 17:27)

10. Be silent If the issue is none of your business - (Prov 14:10)

11. Be silent When you are tempted to tell an outright lie - (Prov 4:24)

12. Be silent If your words will damage someone else's reputation - (Prov 16:27)

13. Be silent If your words will damage a friendship - (Prov 16:28)

14. Be silent When you are feeling critical - (James 3:9)

15. Be silent If you can't say it without screaming it - (Prov 25:28)

16. Be silent If your words will be a poor reflection of the Lord or your friends and family - (1 Pt 2:21-23)

17. Be silent If you may have to eat your words later - (Prov 18:21)

18. Be silent If you have already said it more than one time - (Prov 19:13)

19. Be silent When you are tempted to flatter a wicked person - (Prov 24:24)

20. Be silent When you are supposed to be working instead - (Prov 14:23)



Saturday, April 8, 2017

Where Do We Go After Death?

It is good when we come to a meeting to try and retain some of the things we hear so that in future days we can read over the passages of Scripture spoken of. Tonight I would like to speak a little that has been real to me the past few months. Well, I might say fresh, because it was some few years ago when I first thought of it, but just recently my mind has been refreshed on it because I have been asked many times in different places the question, “Where do we go after death?” But, first of all, I would like to say this and would like for you to  keep in mind that in this world there are many classes of people but in God's sight there are only two: Those that are “in Christ” and those that are “out of Christ”.  I would also like to bring before you the six periods of time: 1st, Life; 2nd, Death; 3rd, the period between Death and the Resurrection; 4th, the Resurrection; 5th, Judgement; 6th, Eternity. Through all these periods there are only the two classes, those in Christ and those out of Christ. 

We do not have to say much about the first period,

1Life. We are all living and know just what life is. We either live in Christ or out of Christ. There are only the two classes. Life is often referred to as "life's little day". The time when we are born into the world until the time we leave it, that is life. It is this life that decides where we will be for eternity.

2. Death. "What happens when we die?" Turn to Ecclesiastes 12: 5-6-7. The latter part of the 5th verse speaks of death…”Man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets.”   Then verse 6 makes verse 7 clearer. “Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern. 7 Then shall the dust return to the earth, as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.” You remember back in Genesis 2:7, when God created man, it says, “God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul”. God took from the earth clay as it were, and made man just as a potter would make a vessel, then He breathed into his nostrils His spirit. Just two things coming together, one from the earth and one from God: united, they made a living soul. So we see here in Ecclesiastes 12:7 what happens at death…the dust returns to the earth as it was and the spirit shall return to God who gave it…a separation of the two things at death that were united in life. There isn't anyone who wants to die out of Christ but how can anyone die in Christ if they live out of Christ? I might say tonight I want to die in this hall, but if I don't come into the hall, how can I die in it? I might be just outside of the door of this hall yet not be willing to come into the hall, and die on the outside. Ecclesiastes 3:21, “the spirit of man goeth upward and the spirit of the beast goeth downward.” Ecclesiastes 9:10, “There is no work nor device nor knowledge nor wisdom in the grave, whither thou goest.”

3. The Period Between Death and the Resurrection. Revelation 14:13, “…Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord, etc..." ----- "that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.” This is the period following death to the resurrection for those who die in the Lord. They are resting and their works do follow them. It says of Abel, in Hebrews 11:4, that as a result of his labours, he being dead yet speaketh. By his deeds, his influence still lives. That is equally true of others as well as Abel. Do you think God would be so unjust as not to give Abel and others a little reward for their life speaking to us? So thus He gives them rest from their labours unto the judgement when they receive their reward. Revelation 6:9, “I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held.” They were resting. Where is that altar? I am just going to tell you I don't know, but I have a good idea it couldn't be far from where Jesus is, and He is at the right hand of God. Paul said, in 2nd Corinthians 5:8, “I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.” Philippians 1:23, “I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better.” I have no doubt as to where the spirit goes of those who die in the Lord at death; they are resting, waiting for the final judgement day. Do you think, in this 9th verse of Revelation 6 that it means only those that were slain? I don't think it would leave Moses, Joseph and David out of the count, and they were not slain. I like to read that verse like this: “I saw under the altar the souls of the overcomers.” The reason why I read it that way is because in this same book you read about those that overcame were clothed in white raiment. In Genesis 49 it says of Gad, “A troop shall overcome him, but he shall overcome at the last.” It is those that overcome at the last that will die in Christ. In connection with those that die out of Christ, read Jude 6. “And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgement of the great day”. Read 2nd Peter 2:4, “For if God spared not the angels that sinned but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness to be reserved unto judgement.” Verse 9, “The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgement to be punished.” Is it worthwhile being in Christ? I should say it is!

4. Resurrection. John 5:28, In the resurrection there are two classes of people also. All shall come forth, but not all shall arise at the same time. 1st Corinthians 15:23. “But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, etc.” 1 Thessalonians 3:13, “To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.”; chapter 4:13 “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words”. Then, in Revelation 20:2 and 3, Satan will be bound and deceives the nations no more. Verse 4, See on the throne those that were resting, souls that were beheaded or overcomers reigning with Christ for 1000 years. Verse 5, “But the rest of the dead liveth not again until the 1000 years were finished.” Read in connection with verse 11, (“I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.” ) Matthew 25:31 to the end of the chapter.

5. Judgement. Revelation 20:12: “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.” What does it mean when it says "the books were opened"? It means the 66 books that I am holding in my hand. If we did not have these books to teach us how to live in Christ, there might be some excuse, but God has left us without excuse because He has given us His Word to go by. What is the book of life? In the human kingdom when a child is born, there is someone to come around to register that child's name, birth, etc. in the State Register. If you would not have been born, your name would not be in that book; likewise in God's kingdom. When a child is born into God's family, their name is registered in the Book of life; the deeds that we do, etc. and in that day these books will be opened, and those who are in Christ will find their names registered there; but those that are out of Christ, their names will not appear because they have not been born again. Those that are in Christ will receive their reward.

6. Eternity. Matthew 25:34, “Come ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world”, and to those that are out of Christ, verse 41, “Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels”. God prepared a Kingdom for everyone but for those that disobeyed, a place of punishment was prepared. He prepared a better place for them, but if they won't choose the better place then He will send them to the other. I don't know any better future for a woman, man, young boy or girl, than in God's pathway, both here and hereafter.

J. Jackson ~ Virginia 1940  

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Who Should Read The Bible?

The Young - To learn how to live.
The Old - To know how to die.
The Ignorant - For wisdom.
The Learned - For humility.
The Rich - For compassion.
The Poor - For comfort.
The Dreamer - For enchantment.
The Practical - For counsel.
The Weak - For strength.
The Strong - For direction.
The Haughty - For warning.
The Humble - For exaltation.
The Troubled - For peace.
The Weary - For rest.
The Doubting - For assurance.
The Sinner - For salvation.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Be True To Yourself

It's easy to get caught up in a world in which our attention is focused on everybody and everything else but ourselves. We are often told to be kind, to love, and to speak the truth. Yet, while it is right for us to do so, we are rarely ever told to be true to who we are, to protect ourselves. These valuable life lessons ensure that in doing the right thing, we do not sacrifice who we truly are. 

Listen - But Don't Lose Your Voice

Speak - But Don't Be Unkind In Your Words

Believe - But Don't Trust Every Word You Hear

Hope - But Never Expect

Look Forward - But Never Wait

Care - But Never Neglect Yourself

Learn - And Never Stop Learning


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

The Lord’s Remnant

Micah 2:12 “I will surely assemble, O Jacob, all of thee; I will surely gather the remnant of Israel ; I will put them together as the sheep of Bozrah, as the flock in the midst of their fold”.

Micah 4:7 “And I will make her that halted a remnant”.

Isaiah 1:9 “…the Lord of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant…”

God has always been interested in the remnant. A remnant is just a small part that is still left of the original. The bigger, main part is gone; there is one little, small part that is left. In general, remnants have very little value, but it is not so with God. God very highly values remnants. The remnants are often discarded and thrown away. You can’t sell them, as they have no value. They are thrown away, or given away.

A man had in his garage many boxes, and one was marked “String too short to use”. He was still keeping it. These pieces of string once were part of a big ball of string. The bigger part is gone. This is what God’s people are today. They are like little pieces of string too short to use. And, this is what God is after; He wants and desires nothing else.

Romans 11:5 “Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace.” This was written a few years after Jesus was taken from the earth, and also at that time the Lord’s people were also merely a remnant. God has always kept His eye on the remnant, and He still is looking for the remnant.

Jesus came to the earth to show mankind the way of God, and when He was taken away, there were only a few who were faithful to what Jesus had given them. Even if they were small and few, they were still part of the original.

Jesus said in Matthew 7:14 “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” It is quite possible that the remnant is even smaller than what we may think it is.

It may sometimes feel that there are too few who serve God; we may feel that we are alone. But, God is still working and He knows where they are and He knows how to gather them unto His fold. Even if the remnant is small, they love God, they love truth, and they love God’s true way.

One time a companion and I went to a factory where they were making bags. There was a huge box marked “Remnant”. I went through that, and it was mostly odd-shaped pieces of cloth. It seems they won’t fit anywhere, or with anything. They have been cut off, and tossed aside. Looking at the bags, I could see that the off-cut pieces were part of the original. This factory was giving these remnant pieces away…of no worth to them. They won’t bother to price them, market and sell them.

But there was one person who went through all those pieces, and we were told that he makes bags from those remnants. He sews them together in different patterns, and makes beautiful bags from them. They sure have character, and a story to tell. This is who God’s people are, and this is what God is doing. He takes the rejected, cut-off pieces and He can make something better and of worth from them. As in the days of Micah, God is gathering the remnant and making up His people from these little, unwanted remnants.

Revelation 12:17 “The dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ”.

The Lord’s people are those who keep His commandments, even when they have much against them. God’s true people will never be large numbers. Sometimes we hear people say they would walk in this way of God but there is so few. But that is the very reason why we should walk in this way. God looks on the remnant as His people, and He gathers them into His flock. They are His sheep, and they belong to His fold.

Over and over we read in the Bible of many who went astray; they left the narrow way of God. Through all the experiences we read of in the Bible God was still keeping His eye on a faithful few, the true remnant that were part of the original. His ear is open to their cry; His eye is always on them.

It says He gathers His remnant together as the sheep of Bozrah. This city Bozrah was the capital of Edom , and it was famous for its flocks. They would have good shepherds and good pastures. This city was destroyed, and what remained of their flocks were just a few, a remnant.

If you would want to make a masterpiece, you would have to use the best quality material to work with. But God looks for that which is discarded, not wanted by anyone else, the unwanted and rejected. When He has it in His hands, He works with it and He makes a beautiful masterpiece.

The book of Micah tells us what God can do with remnants. Micah 4:7 “I will make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast afar off a strong nation”. This is like a picture of God’s kingdom. It is interesting that God can take one that is halted, crippled and unable to walk and make that His remnant, and that they may be the chosen of God. In this way of God it is the lame that walk with God. They stumble, they fall and they get up again, and they fall again, but God has chosen them. He chose the blind to see Him, to be His remnant.

Luke 14:13 “But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind”. The outcast, rejected and unwanted are most welcome with God. Micah 4:7 “I will make her that halted a remnant”.

In Psalm 38:17 David said, “I am ready to halt”. I wonder, are we ready to halt? He repeatedly counted himself in with the poor, the lame. He felt he was part of the hurt (verse 5), the weak (verse 10); God’s remnant.

Micah 5:8 “And the remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles in the midst of many people as a lion among the beasts of the forest...” Jesus was the lion of the tribe of Judah . He was courageous. For us to be part of the remnant of God, we need to be courageous as a lion.

Micah 7:18 “Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.” It is because of this mercy of God that we can become part of His remnant, and we can remain a part of His remnant until the end of our days.

Isaiah 6:13 “But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return… so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof”. This helps us to understand a little more how small the remnant is. Very small, but part of the original; it still bears the substance, the very thing that confirms it is part of the original. Here it is mentioned a tenth; sometimes it is a lot less than that. No matter how little or how small, the remnant is still the Lord’s.

A remnant is part of the whole, and it matches. It matches pattern for pattern, thread for thread. The bits are pieces of the whole. It fits perfectly with the original. We as God’s people, His true faithful people, fit perfectly with what was before, perfectly with everything we read in the scriptures.

This way of God is not a copy, or an alteration. It still is just what it was; it is God’s way, part and piece of the whole, that which was seen in Christ, and that which Jesus established on the earth 2000 years ago; the true remnant of God is still the same. It is still going on today. It is small and humble. It is forgotten and it is despised, but it is God’s remnant. Such as it was in the beginning, such is God’s true way today.

Isaiah 37:31 “And the remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall again take root downward, and bear fruit upward”. The same seed produces the same roots and the same fruit. Nothing has changed, and it doesn’t need to change. It never will change.

This word remnant comes from the Bible. The first thought I got when I saw this word is that a remnant is something that is too small to be of any use or worth. But it has a different meaning in the scriptures. The real meaning is that which is genuine, true, authentic. It is small, but it is the real thing. Even if it is insignificant to the world, it still is all that God wants.

There have been times through the history that God’s kingdom has been at a low; maybe it has been hanging by a thread. We think of the days of Esther and all that was against God’s people. In Daniel’s time there were just a few who refused to bow down to those images. They were true; they were God’s remnant. Yet through that, God was able to restore and preserve.

When we read through the prophets, from Isaiah to the Malachi the last prophet, over and over again it speaks of God’s remnant. When they went into captivity, God knew that the fires of the experience would not destroy them, because they were genuine; they were true and loyal.

In the days of Micah, the kingdom of God again was at a low. There weren’t many who were going on, doing the right thing. 400 years later we read of Joseph and Mary. Right up until now God has been true, and as we are sitting here today, we are God’s remnant.

J. Chafee

Sunday, December 4, 2016

For Whom Christ Died

I saw a brother weak and worn,
By sin beset and anguish torn.
He rose again, by brethren borne;
And though by some still criticised
He is a soul for whom Christ died.
I looked upon a newborn child,
So pure, so sweet and undefined;
This miracle of life and birth
Would soon be tainted by sin's mirth.
Yet, 'tis a soul for whom Christ died.
I viewed a sinner deep in sin,
And wondered, "Is there hope for him?
Could such a one have Christ within?"
Yes! There is hope, our Lord revived!
And this a soul for whom died.
I stood beside a dying man,
A life poured out in Jesus' plan,
He gave himself as did the Lamb;
Yet on the Saviour's blood relied.
This is a soul for whom Christ died.
The emblems of our Lord I see,
The Spirit speaks, "Gethsemane."
And Love Divine of "Calvary."
The Lamb of God was crucified.
We all are souls for whom Christ died.

Author Unknown