Category Archives: Prayer

Pray for the USA to turn back to God and become again a true light to the nations

The United States of America was founded based on Christian ideals and beliefs, but over the past few hundred years has largely turned their back on God and now embrace worship of self, worship of money, and many other sins. The word of God is tossed aside in favor of the wicked desires of men. God’s word shows us that when the people turn from God, He releases His blessing from that country. That does not mean He gives up on His people there, but rather that the country will suffer. There are consequences. The USA has great potential to serve God across the world if even those who profess Jesus with their lips would genuinely  turn toward Him and change their behaviors to be a light to the nation and the world.

2 Chronicles 7:12-22

     12Then the LORD appeared to Solomon at night and said to him, “I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice. 13“If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locust to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among My people, 14and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 15“Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to the prayer offered in this place. 16“For now I have chosen and consecrated this house that My name may be there forever, and My eyes and My heart will be there perpetually. 17“As for you, if you walk before Me as your father David walked, even to do according to all that I have commanded you, and will keep My statutes and My ordinances, 18then I will establish your royal throne as I covenanted with your father David, saying, ‘You shall not lack a man to be ruler in Israel.’

      19“But if you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods and worship them, 20then I will uproot you from My land which I have given you, and this house which I have consecrated for My name I will cast out of My sight and I will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples. 21“As for this house, which was exalted, everyone who passes by it will be astonished and say, ‘Why has the LORD done thus to this land and to this house?’ 22“And they will say, ‘Because they forsook the LORD, the God of their fathers who brought them from the land of Egypt, and they adopted other gods and worshiped them and served them; therefore He has brought all this adversity on them.’”

Please take some time to pray for repentance and mercy for the USA as leader of the free world but also for other nations globally in which there still remains a remnant of true disciples seeking to follow the Lord’s will.

Psalm 85

Prayer for God’s Mercy upon the Nation.

For the choir director. A Psalm of the sons of Korah.

     1O LORD, You showed favor to Your land;
You restored the captivity of Jacob.

      2You forgave the iniquity of Your people;
You covered all their sin.

Selah.

      3You withdrew all Your fury;
You turned away from Your burning anger.

      4Restore us, O God of our salvation,
And cause Your indignation toward us to cease.

      5Will You be angry with us forever?
Will You prolong Your anger to all generations?

      6Will You not Yourself revive us again,
That Your people may rejoice in You?

      7Show us Your lovingkindness, O LORD,
And grant us Your salvation.

      8I will hear what God the LORD will say;
For He will speak peace to His people, to His godly ones;
But let them not turn back to folly.

      9Surely His salvation is near to those who fear Him,
That glory may dwell in our land.

      10Lovingkindness and truth have met together;
Righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

      11Truth springs from the earth,
And righteousness looks down from heaven.

      12Indeed, the LORD will give what is good,
And our land will yield its produce.

      13Righteousness will go before Him
And will make His footsteps into a way.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.
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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.
Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

A Prayer for One Another In Christ

A prayer for us as followers of Yeshua in considering praying for one another.

1 Thessalonians 3:11-13

      11Now may our God and Father Himself and Jesus our Lord direct our way to you; 12and may the Lord cause you to increase and abound in love for one another, and for all people, just as we also do for you; 13so that He may establish your hearts without blame in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all His saints.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

So Obvious A Blind Man Can See It

Sometimes the works of Christ are so obvious that any should be able to recognize it. However, some are bound and determined to hold to their own traditions and beliefs and look past any scripture, past any miracle, and refuse any witness that declares Yeshua to be Messiah. It is not new. Jeremiah witnessed it, Christ witnessed it, we witness it still today.

Jeremiah 5:21

 21‘Now hear this, O foolish and senseless people,
Who have eyes but do not see;
Who have ears but do not hear.

Mark 4:23

23“If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.”

Let us pray for those who refuse to see, that YHWH would open their eyes and ears so that they could see and understand the truth of God’s kingdom.

John 9:13-34

Controversy over the Man

     13They brought to the Pharisees the man who was formerly blind. 14Now it was a Sabbath on the day when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. 15Then the Pharisees also were asking him again how he received his sight. And he said to them, “He applied clay to my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” 16Therefore some of the Pharisees were saying, “This man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.” But others were saying, “How can a man who is a sinner perform such signs?” And there was a division among them. 17So they said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him, since He opened your eyes?” And he said, “He is a prophet.”

      18The Jews then did not believe it of him, that he had been blind and had received sight, until they called the parents of the very one who had received his sight, 19and questioned them, saying, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? Then how does he now see?” 20His parents answered them and said, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; 21but how he now sees, we do not know; or who opened his eyes, we do not know. Ask him; he is of age, he will speak for himself.” 22His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jews; for the Jews had already agreed that if anyone confessed Him to be Christ, he was to be put out of the synagogue. 23For this reason his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”

      24So a second time they called the man who had been blind, and said to him, “Give glory to God; we know that this man is a sinner.” 25He then answered, “Whether He is a sinner, I do not know; one thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.” 26So they said to him, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?” 27He answered them, “I told you already and you did not listen; why do you want to hear it again? You do not want to become His disciples too, do you?” 28They reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are disciples of Moses. 29“We know that God has spoken to Moses, but as for this man, we do not know where He is from.” 30The man answered and said to them, “Well, here is an amazing thing, that you do not know where He is from, and yet He opened my eyes. 31“We know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is God-fearing and does His will, He hears him. 32“Since the beginning of time it has never been heard that anyone opened the eyes of a person born blind. 33“If this man were not from God, He could do nothing.” 34They answered him, “You were born entirely in sins, and are you teaching us?” So they put him out.

Do not be intimidated by those who seem to have a lot of confidence or have studied formally. Sometimes the simple can see and understand what the “learned” cannot. You can explain and you can reason with people about Christ, but some are spiritually blind. They can not see. Pray for them, that God would open their eyes and ears so they can recognize and understand His kingdom and His truth. Pray also for yourself and other believers that YHWH would continue to open your eyes to the full truth of the scriptures, of His instructions. There are many who are living according to what churches or parents have taught them, but that are not living according to all that the word of God states in the Bible. Test everything against scripture. Hold to that which is good. Be teachable and change those things which you learn about God’s kingdom that are different than what you were taught, even when it seems emotionally painful or difficult. Put God first and everything else will be put in proper perspective.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

The Lord Is A Loving Father, A Provider, A Protector

Our Lord is the Creator of the entire universe in all its magnificence, in all its grand size and scope, in all its infinite detail. He is all powerful. He is all knowing. He is present everywhere at all times. Yet He loves us as His children. Who are we that He should be mindful of us, but He is gracious, loving, and kind towards us.

Let us devote ourselves to Him and come before Him with supplication and thanksgiving as we would a loving father.

Psalm 116

Thanksgiving for Deliverance from Death.

     1I love the LORD, because He hears
My voice and my supplications.

      2Because He has inclined His ear to me,
Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live.

      3The cords of death encompassed me
And the terrors of Sheol came upon me;
I found distress and sorrow.

      4Then I called upon the name of the LORD:
“O LORD, I beseech You, save my life!”

      5Gracious is the LORD, and righteous;
Yes, our God is compassionate.

      6The LORD preserves the simple;
I was brought low, and He saved me.

      7Return to your rest, O my soul,
For the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.

      8For You have rescued my soul from death,
My eyes from tears,
My feet from stumbling.

      9I shall walk before the LORD
In the land of the living.

      10I believed when I said,
“I am greatly afflicted.”

      11I said in my alarm,
“All men are liars.”

      12What shall I render to the LORD
For all His benefits toward me?

      13I shall lift up the cup of salvation
And call upon the name of the LORD.

      14I shall pay my vows to the LORD,
Oh may it be in the presence of all His people.

      15Precious in the sight of the LORD
Is the death of His godly ones.

      16O LORD, surely I am Your servant,
I am Your servant, the son of Your handmaid,
You have loosed my bonds.

      17To You I shall offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving,
And call upon the name of the LORD.

      18I shall pay my vows to the LORD,
Oh may it be in the presence of all His people,

      19In the courts of the LORD’S house,
In the midst of you, O Jerusalem.
Praise the LORD!

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

We Choose Our Path, But We Do Not Get To Choose The Consequences

YHWH is no more pleased with us today when we take His blessings for granted and accept false gods among us than He was when the events in Deuteronomy 29 unfolded. He has provided us a great nation, founded in Christian principles, focused on Christian morals in both government and schools. Yet over the past 50-100 years we as a people have rejected Him more and more. We have embraced atheism (which requires more faith than accepting YHWH)… we have embraced false religions from around the world such as Islam and changed our culture and our schools and our government to accommodate their false beliefs. We have embraced paganism, celebrating Christmas and Easter and other occasions which have more roots in paganism than Christianity… no matter how much lipstick people try to put on those pigs by inventing Christian meaning to apply over pagan origins. Why not instead celebrate the appointed times that YHWH revealed in Leviticus 23?

We accept and normalize sin such as abortion and homosexuality. Rather than try to help the people who genuinely need it, we tell them they are fine and persecute the Christians who live out God’s word. As a culture, those who call themselves Christian embrace the world’s values and make excuses for ignoring or rejecting God’s word.  We see in our lifetimes Sabbath disappear from our culture, but somehow accept it and convince ourselves it is fine. We no longer even recognize the failing of our forefathers in walking away from God’s instructions over the past thousand years. One example is redefining the calendar from the Biblical calendar to the Gregorian. Man changed even how to count the days. Biblically they counted from sundown to sundown. Sabbath as Yeshua celebrated it was on Saturday, not Sunday.

We are not allowed to “hurt people’s feelings” by telling them about their sin, whether it is homosexuality, killing unborn children, gluttony, coveting, sloth… etc. All of that is unacceptable to be rebuked and all is provided many excuses. But should a Christian speak God’s word to rebuke someone or refuse to pretend their sin is ok and speak out against it… that must be punished with public shame and lawsuits.

There are many more examples. Man has continually separated himself from YHWH by adopting his own instructions rather than obeying those of YHWH.

YHWH is no more pleased about this than He was as the events of Deuteronomy 29 unfolded. After all He has done to bless His people and prepare them, a time still comes where they depart from His ways. His blessing is removed and as a nation we walk into a curse.

Deuteronomy 29

The Covenant in Moab

      1These are the words of the covenant which the LORD commanded Moses to make with the sons of Israel in the land of Moab, besides the covenant which He had made with them at Horeb.

      2And Moses summoned all Israel and said to them, “You have seen all that the LORD did before your eyes in the land of Egypt to Pharaoh and all his servants and all his land; 3the great trials which your eyes have seen, those great signs and wonders. 4“Yet to this day the LORD has not given you a heart to know, nor eyes to see, nor ears to hear. 5“I have led you forty years in the wilderness; your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandal has not worn out on your foot. 6“You have not eaten bread, nor have you drunk wine or strong drink, in order that you might know that I am the LORDyour God. 7“When you reached this place, Sihon the king of Heshbon and Og the king of Bashan came out to meet us for battle, but we defeated them;8and we took their land and gave it as an inheritance to the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of the Manassites. 9“So keep the words of this covenant to do them, that you may prosper in all that you do.

      10“You stand today, all of you, before the LORD your God: your chiefs, your tribes, your elders and your officers, even all the men of Israel, 11your little ones, your wives, and the alien who is within your camps, from the one who chops your wood to the one who draws your water, 12that you may enter into the covenant with the LORD your God, and into His oath which the LORD your God is making with you today, 13in order that He may establish you today as His people and that He may be your God, just as He spoke to you and as He swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

      14“Now not with you alone am I making this covenant and this oath, 15but both with those who stand here with us today in the presence of the LORDour God and with those who are not with us here today 16(for you know how we lived in the land of Egypt, and how we came through the midst of the nations through which you passed; 17moreover, you have seen their abominations and their idols of wood, stone, silver, and gold, which they had with them); 18so that there will not be among you a man or woman, or family or tribe, whose heart turns away today from the LORD our God, to go and serve the gods of those nations; that there will not be among you a root bearing poisonous fruit and wormwood. 19“It shall be when he hears the words of this curse, that he will boast, saying, ‘I have peace though I walk in the stubbornness of my heart in order to destroy the watered land with the dry.’20“The LORD shall never be willing to forgive him, but rather the anger of the LORD and His jealousy will burn against that man, and every curse which is written in this book will rest on him, and the LORD will blot out his name from under heaven. 21“Then the LORD will single him out for adversity from all the tribes of Israel, according to all the curses of the covenant which are written in this book of the law.

      22“Now the generation to come, your sons who rise up after you and the foreigner who comes from a distant land, when they see the plagues of the land and the diseases with which the LORD has afflicted it, will say, 23‘All its land is brimstone and salt, a burning waste, unsown and unproductive, and no grass grows in it, like the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboiim, which the LORD overthrew in His anger and in His wrath.’ 24“All the nations will say, ‘Why has the LORD done thus to this land? Why this great outburst of anger?’ 25“Then men will say, ‘Because they forsook the covenant of the LORD, the God of their fathers, which He made with them when He brought them out of the land of Egypt. 26‘They went and served other gods and worshiped them, gods whom they have not known and whom He had not allotted to them. 27‘Therefore, the anger of the LORD burned against that land, to bring upon it every curse which is written in this book; 28and the LORD uprooted them from their land in anger and in fury and in great wrath, and cast them into another land, as it is this day.’

      29“The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law.

As a nation we need to return to YHWH and His ways. As His people we must humble ourselves and pray for our nation. Let us give thanks for the blessings and ask forgiveness for our nation. Let us intercede on behalf of our nation and ask Him to awaken people to the truth and to lead them by His Spirit to a powerful revival not just to the American roots of Christianity, though that is a good start. Let us pray He would take us back to a thriving Biblical view of obedience and faith in YHWH through Yeshua.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

YHWH Still Can And Still Does Perform Miracles

Thousands have witnessed His miracles and many have documented and recorded the events. These are not stories, but real historical events. Yeshua demonstrates both the power and the desire to perform miracles in this world. Why do we so often assume He no longer can or will do so?

John 6:1-14

Five Thousand Fed

      1After these things Jesus went away to the other side of the Sea of Galilee (or Tiberias). 2A large crowd followed Him, because they saw the signs which He was performing on those who were sick. 3Then Jesus went up on the mountain, and there He sat down with His disciples. 4Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was near. 5Therefore Jesus, lifting up His eyes and seeing that a large crowd was coming to Him, said to Philip, “Where are we to buy bread, so that these may eat?” 6This He was saying to test him, for He Himself knew what He was intending to do. 7Philip answered Him, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them, for everyone to receive a little.” 8One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to Him, 9“There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are these for so many people?” 10Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 11Jesus then took the loaves, and having given thanks, He distributed to those who were seated; likewise also of the fish as much as they wanted. 12When they were filled, He said to His disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments so that nothing will be lost.” 13So they gathered them up, and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves which were left over by those who had eaten. 14Therefore when the people saw the sign which He had performed, they said, “This is truly the Prophet who is to come into the world.”

When seeking the miraculous from YHWH, don’t do so with an attitude of “prove yourself to me”, as He likely will not answer. Yeshua did not perform when someone demanded He prove Himself. He performed miracles consistent with the will of YHWH. If you need His help, ask Him, believing all the while that He can not because He need prove Himself, but because you already believe and you are humbly seeking mercy and grace.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

Lift Up Thanks And Prayers for Those That Serve

According to Wikipedia:

Veterans Day is an official United States public holiday, observed annually on November 11, that honors military veterans; that is, persons who served in the United States Armed Forces. It coincides with other holidays, including Armistice Day and Remembrance Day, celebrated in other countries that mark the anniversary of the end of World War I; major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when the Armistice with Germany went into effect. The United States previously observed Armistice Day. The U.S. holiday was renamed Veterans Day in 1954.

Veterans Day is not to be confused with Memorial Day, a U.S. public holiday in May; Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans, while Memorial Day honors those who died while in military service.[1] It is also not to be confused with Armed Forces Day, a minor U.S. remembrance that also occurs in May, which specifically honors those currently serving in the U.S. military.

It is good for us to honor and recognize those who died in military service, those who are actively serving, and those who have served in the past. These people who choose to serve in our military have an impact for our nation and for others around the world.  It is good for us to pray for those still living and the families of those who have passed on.

I would also encourage us to pray for and seek to honor and recognize those individuals who have dedicated their lives to serve in the Lord’s army. There are many who are actively serving the Lord or have done so in the past, some giving up their lives or facing much hardship for the glory of YHWH. Their sacrifice and obedience has impacted the world as well, setting many free from sin and selfishness, leading many to salvation through Christ.

I encourage each of us to take time to pray for these individuals and their families. Let us also give thanks to our Creator for both those who serve in His army and those who serve to protect our nation physically as well.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

God Is Sufficient For Any Circumstance; We Should Trust Him No Matter The Outcome

No matter what situation you face, know that Yeshua is sufficient to address it. He may provide supernatural healing, He may remove great obstacles, or sometimes He may have reasons for choosing other outcomes which we do not understand. However, we can know that He is able to heal and address every circumstance and that He hears His righteous followers when they pray, those who have truly accepted Him as Lord, repented of sin, and been cleansed of sin through His sacrifice.

John 4:46-54

Healing a Nobleman’s Son

      46Therefore He came again to Cana of Galilee where He had made the water wine. And there was a royal official whose son was sick at Capernaum. 47When he heard that Jesus had come out of Judea into Galilee, he went to Him and was imploring Him to come down and heal his son; for he was at the point of death. 48So Jesus said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you simply will not believe.” 49The royal official said to Him, “Sir, come down before my child dies.” 50Jesus said to him, “Go; your son lives.” The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him and started off. 51As he was now going down, his slaves met him, saying that his son was living. 52So he inquired of them the hour when he began to get better. Then they said to him, “Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.” 53So the father knew that it was at that hour in which Jesus said to him, “Your son lives”; and he himself believed and his whole household. 54This is again a second sign that Jesus performed when He had come out of Judea into Galilee.

I am often reminded of the mindset that Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had when confronted by the Babyonian king. They were confronted with a different type of challenge. They knew the Lord could save them, they thought the Lord would save them, but they were prepared to trust the Lord even if He chose not to. Truly this is a great model for faith and seeking the Lord in the face of great adversity.

Daniel 3:15-18

15“Now if you are ready, at the moment you hear the sound of the horn, flute, lyre, trigon, psaltery and bagpipe and all kinds of music, to fall down and worship the image that I have made, very well. But if you do not worship, you will immediately be cast into the midst of a furnace of blazing fire; and what god is there who can deliver you out of my hands?”

      16Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego replied to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this matter. 17“If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. 18“But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

God is sufficient for any circumstance we may face. We should trust Him with any outcome, even if it is one we did not expect.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

Pray the Lord Sends More Workers for the Harvest

Pray with us that the Lord would send more workers to help bring people to faith in Him through Christ Jesus. Pray that He would draw the workers close to Him so they would bring the full and true gospel and not one which is diluted by man in an attempt to avoid offending someone or trying to please someone. Pray YHWH’s people would “unleash the lion” of the gospel in all its power.

Matthew 9:35-38 

35 Jesus traveled through all the towns and villages of that area, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness.36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.37 He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few.38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.” 

Pray too that He would develop each of us and help us to be effective workers in the harvest as well. Let us not just rely on others but step up and fill the role ourselves as well.

Pray the Lord would show you where you can start helping with the harvest or begin preparing so you will be ready soon.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.

Guidance and Encouragement for the Church

There is actually quite a lot packed into a fairly short chapter in 2 Thessalonians 3. Read through it and meet me on the other side to unpack it.

2 Thessalonians 3

Exhortation

     1Finally, brethren, pray for us that the word of the Lord will spread rapidly and be glorified, just as it did also with you; 2and that we will be rescued from perverse and evil men; for not all have faith. 3But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one. 4We have confidence in the Lord concerning you, that you are doing and will continue to do what we command. 5May the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the steadfastness of Christ.

      6Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from every brother who leads an unruly life and not according to the tradition which you received from us. 7For you yourselves know how you ought to follow our example, because we did not act in an undisciplined manner among you, 8nor did we eat anyone’s bread without paying for it, but with labor and hardship we kept working night and day so that we would not be a burden to any of you; 9not because we do not have the right to this, but in order to offer ourselves as a model for you, so that you would follow our example. 10For even when we were with you, we used to give you this order: if anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either. 11For we hear that some among you are leading an undisciplined life, doing no work at all, but acting like busybodies. 12Now such persons we command and exhort in the Lord Jesus Christ to work in quiet fashion and eat their own bread. 13But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary of doing good.

      14If anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of that person and do not associate with him, so that he will be put to shame. 15Yet do not regard him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.

      16Now may the Lord of peace Himself continually grant you peace in every circumstance. The Lord be with you all!

      17I, Paul, write this greeting with my own hand, and this is a distinguishing mark in every letter; this is the way I write. 18The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.

There is a lot we should take note of and apply in our own lives today.

  • Paul begins this chapter by asking for prayer not only for him to be protected from wicked men, but also for the word of God to spread quickly and be glorified.
  • Paul expresses faith and confidence in the Lord not only for his situation but for that of the believers in Thessalonica. He has confidence in God’s protection from Satan as well as the need to ask God to help direct our hearts to love Him and be steadfast in Christ.
  • Paul takes time to encourage other Christians.
  • Contrary to what many would teach today, we are not to befriend and be close to unruly, undisciplined people just because they may claim to follow Christ. Their behaviors and attitudes bely the fact that they are not truly submitted to Christ.
  • Paul makes special emphasis of saying they should not grow weary of doing good.
  • Right before saying this, Paul comments quite a bit on how they set an example by working for and paying for what they needed to survive. He makes two points, both of which seem at odds with what is normal in our culture today.  We should take note as our culture may be out of calibration with the early church. First, that even though he could expect the people to provide for him while he ministers to them about Christ, he thought it important to support himself as an example. Second, those that refuse to work “shall eat their own bread”. He clearly states that those who are unwilling to work (not talking here about unable to work), should not be subsidized in their laziness or stubbornness by others but rather encouraged by even their own hunger to work and be productive.
  • Paul also makes a point to instruct the church to discipline and admonish  members who refuse to live according to the proper instruction in these matters. Too often today churches do not admonish anyone effectively, if at all. All are invited to sit in church regardless of their outward sin and rebellion. Pastors rationalize that “at least they will hear the word”, but individuals take home the message that living in sin as they are is just fine and they are “saved”. Those outside the church can no longer see that the church is any different than they are.  People in the church behave the same way that people outside the church do. Effective rebuke is desperately in need, even though it should be done with respect and love. Pastors are too concerned someone may get mad and leave, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. There is no trophy for having the biggest crowd sit in church and not follow God. Quite the opposite. Leaders will be judged based on how they accepted sin and offended God instead of man.

Pray and reflect on this message from Paul to Thessalonica. It is still relevant today. Ask God to show you what changes you should make in your life.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

 

Grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with you.