Dr Norm's Mid-Week Faith Booster

{tag_author}

Obedience is the Fountain For a Life of Blessing

Posted By at Wednesday, June 20, 2018

 

Luke 11:28 Blessed rather are those hear the Word of God and keep it!

John 13:17 If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them!

Job 36:11 NLT If they listen and obey God, they will be blessed with prosperity throughout their lives. All their years will be pleasant.

Obedience to God's Word unlocks the keys to all blessings in our lives. It gives us the ability to walk in the fullness of Abraham's promised blessings. To obey God means that we do all that God tells us to do, by His Spirit and by His Word. Then, as we obey His written Word and heed to the leading of the Holy Spirit, the end result is that God will make us the head and not the tail.

2 Peter 1:10 Wherefore the rather brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure; for if you do these things you shall never fall.

James, the earthly brother of Jesus, said not to be just a hearer of the Word, but a doer of the Word in James 1:22. But we don't just listen to God's word. We must do what it says. Otherwise, we are only fooling ourselves.

James said that if we love Jesus, we should obey Him.

The prophet Samuel said in First Samuel 15:22 NLT of the Old Testament; 'But Samuel replied, "What is more pleasing to the LORD, your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to his voice? Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and submission is better than offering the fat of rams."'

Obeying God is a day-to-day act of walking in faith and following His Word. The Holy Spirit will prompt you in many ways that may seem small, but as you obey His voice, you will learn to hear more clearly and gain confidence to step out in faith.

Jesus said in Luke 6:47 "Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a wise man who digged deep and builds his house on the rock..."

In Hebrews 5:9 And being made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey Him.

Love is based on obedience, not how we feel, but on what we do. Our faith only works by our love.

Galatians 5:6 For in Christ neither circumcision avails anything nor un-circumcision but faith that works by love!

Obedience is the only standard of measure of our love in God's reckoning. Obedience energizes our hearts with faith. Obedience causes us to do the very things Satan fears we will do, such as spending time with God, studying the Word and learning to listen to the Word being taught at church.

We may know the basics of God's will, and obey His Word by living a righteous and moral life, but there are specifics to His plan for our lives that can only be found through time spent with Him in prayer, reading the Word and listening to what He says through the pastoral teaching. Priority one is being obedient to make time for Him in our everyday lives above other pursuits that bring us pleasure and relaxation; such as, films, sports etc.

What many do not realize is that there is a high cost to disobedience.

It takes only a moment’s reflection to realize that the cost of disobedience has been high. The world as we know it is not the good world God originally created, nor do we human beings resemble the image of God in which we were first made. Tragically, that image has been tarnished and the world is filled with sin, sorrow, and suffering.

The “break” from God's plan began with one act of disobedience by our first parents in the Garden of Eden. By a deliberate choice that was rooted in pride and unbelief, they acted in defiance of God’s revealed will. Their self-centered drive for autonomy to manage their own lives apart from God, was passed down to every human being ever since. That is why we must be born again and choose to obey God's Word every day.

Norman

{tag_author}

Paid in Full

Posted By at Wednesday, April 11, 2018

 

At a Good Friday service I was sharing on the last words Jesus spoke on the cross, some of them in John 19:30 were, "It is finished."

I pointed out that in the Greek language of the New Testament, it was one word 'tetelestai' and that it was a banking and accounting term of the day, which translated out as PAID IN FULL

When Jesus uttered those words He was declaring the debt owed to His Father was wiped away completely and forever. Not that Jesus wiped away any debt He had to pay, because He was sinless but rather, Jesus eliminated the debt owed by us all — the debt of our sin.

We owed a debt we could not pay, and He paid a debt He did not owe, and we are now free from the penalty of it.

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

I read recently that when the accounting books of a certain Scottish doctor were examined after his death, it was found that a number of the accounts were crossed through with a note, 'Forgiven too poor to pay'.

However, the physician's wife later decided that these accounts should be paid in full and she proceeded to sue the clients for the money.

When the case came to court, the judge asked only one question. "Is this your husband's handwriting?"

When she replied that it was, the judge responded, "There is no court in the land that can obtain a debt once the word forgiven has been written on it."

One of the problems common to many people, if not most of us, is that we find it very difficult to forgive someone who we feel has hurt us deeply, especially family members. But you know having an attitude of unforgiveness just locks us into that situation of judging that other person.

Jesus said in Luke 6:37 “Judge not and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven."

The Good News is that when we confess our sins to God and ask for His forgiveness, He forgives us totally and absolutely. He does this not because He ignores the just penalty for our sins, but because He sent Jesus to pay that penalty for us. In His everlasting love for us that He gave His Son, Jesus, to pay that cruel penalty for us through His death on the cross. It was His love for you and me that held Him on the cross, not the nails that penetrated His wrists and ankles.

If we have confessed our sins to God and asked for his forgiveness, we need to accept his forgiveness by faith—regardless of how we feel, and make sure we also forgive others.

Norman

{tag_author}

Don't Go With the Flow, Swim Against It!

Posted By at Wednesday, July 13, 2016

James 1:7-8 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

James 4:7-8 Submit yourself then to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

Someone has explained how, in the frigid waters off Greenland, thousands of icebergs float around. More than 75% of their bulk is under the surface of the water. Some are very tiny while others tower skyward. At times the small ones move in one direction while their tall and gigantic counterparts go in another.

Why is this?

The small ones are pushed around by the winds blowing on the surface of the water, but the deep ocean currents carry the huge deep ice masses along.

In this day that we live in there is great pressure for all of us to go with the crowd, to be politically correct, to do what is convenient regardless of whether it is right and biblical and ethical or not.

The reality is, however, unless we have deep roots in God, we too can easily be swayed by the popular winds of the opinion of the moment and we would then be double-minded and unstable in all we do and swim along with the crowd instead of standing against the tide and saying what we believe according to God's Word.

Think of Jesus; He never worried about being politically correct, or pleasing the crowd or the religious leaders of His day, or even King Herod for that matter.

His only concern was to do right and please God His Father. He did right regardless of the consequences. For you and me to make a difference we, too, need to stand for the Truth and do right regardless of the consequences. We are supposed to stand out from the crowd, not to blend in with the rest of the world.

To do this we need backbone. That means commitment and stick ability; not giving up when the pressure comes on to go along with the crowd, to be popular and to be liked. We need to make a difference and stick to our Godly principles and heritage and obey God's Word and be in the services whether it is convenient or not.

As the saying goes, "Any dead fish can float down the river, but it takes a live fish to swim against the flow and make it upstream."

Furthermore if you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything.

So how is your swimming today?

Norman  

If you would like to receive some of our Sunday teaching messages FREE in your email-box on MP3 format, just contact me and ask. They will usually be available for 7 days after we send them.

{tag_author}

Do You Keep Your Promises?

Posted By at Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Do you remember when you were younger and sometimes made promises to your friends? To show how serious you were you would make a promise like, "Cross my heart and hope to die," if you did not keep the promise.

Maybe I'm more cynical now as an adult, but it seems that instead of the intense desire to live out our word, the slogan for this generation is more likely to be, "Promises are made to be broken."

Gone are the days when we could seal a promise with a simple handshake. Now even signed and notarized documents are often called into question. The law can over-ride most promises and probates when they are challenged in court.

Even one of the most important promises that people can make in life, their wedding vows, are not taken really very seriously anymore. Many are already thinking about an escape clause even before the honeymoon. We are proud of the fact Elizabeth and myself clock up 52 years together next month!

I heard a story about a time at the end of a wedding rehearsal, the groom approached the pastor with an unusual offer. He said, "Look, I'll give you $100 if you'll change the wedding vows. When you get to the part where I'm supposed to promise to love, honour and obey and be faithful to her forever, I'd appreciate it if you'd just leave that out."

He passed the minister $100 and walked away feeling satisfied.

On the day of the wedding, when it came time for the groom's vows, the pastor looked the young man in the eye and said, "Will you promise to prostrate yourself before her, obey her every command and wish, serve her breakfast in bed every morning of your life, and swear eternally before God and your lovely wife that you will not ever even look at another woman, as long as you both shall live?"

The groom swallowed loudly and looked around and replied in a very small voice, "Yes." Then he leaned toward the pastor and whispered, "I thought we had a deal."

The pastor put the $100 back into the groom's hand and whispered, "She made me a better offer."

So it seems most promises nowadays are made to be broken.

I had a dear friend who was a minister for many years and has now gone on to be with the Lord. When he did wedding services he always insisted that the couple took an extra vow saying, "We promise before God this marriage will not end in divorce!"

Now I know that’s not true that everyone will want to take such a vow, but as far as I know, almost all of the wedding ceremonies he performed never ended in divorce.

Many of the people I know still value the importance of keeping their word.

But it is a sign of our times that many people don’t like making promises at all—just try throwing a party and ask people to RSVP! Very few respond because they don’t want to break their promise that they will attend—they want to keep their options open.

In Proverbs 6:16-19 Solomon lists 6 things that God hates:

These six things the Lord hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him:

A proud look, A lying tongue,

Hands that shed innocent blood,

A heart that devises wicked plans,

Feet that are swift in running to evil,

A false witness who speaks lies,

And one who sows discord among brethren.

Today in many church services and other functions, people promise to attend and then without excuse, don’t turn up at all. 

But God is very serious about keeping His promises. 

Do you believe that when God makes a promise, He’ll keep it? 

Or do you think that God is a promise-breaker?

You must be like God and keep your word! Don't be a promise breaker!

Norman 

{tag_author}

He Who Hesitates...

Posted By at Wednesday, May 11, 2016

 

I'm sure you've all heard the phrase; 'He who hesitates is lost!'

The dictionary says: 'A person who spends too much time deliberating about what to do loses the chance to act altogether.'

If you can't come to a decision you are likely to suffer for it. If you spend too much time contemplating a decision you may miss a valuable opportunity. Indecision will cause you to postpone buying a particular car, choosing an educational facility, getting married, even buying new clothes or changing a job.

When you hesitate to do something that God has told you to do, the devil takes a step and he may get the jump on you. Your mind is the battlefield and indecision is the devil's workshop.

For you to live by faith in God's Word, being hesitant is the worst thing you could do [or not do!] Hesitation is a harmful habit to faith and it comes from indecision.

James 1:6-8 Amplified Bible "He who hesitates is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double minded man, unstable in everything he does.”

If you are double-minded it means you are like a split personality, you're trying to live by faith but protecting your fear at the same time.

I read a joke about an elderly man who stopped on the stairs and asked his wife, 'Was I going up or coming down?'

You need to kick the habit of indecision and hesitation today and obey God when He speaks to you about your giving or any of your other decisions.

Make a solid decision to trust in and act on God’s Word and never doubt or hesitate again. Don’t think about doubts any more. You will keep the devil behind you all the time.

If you must doubt, you should doubt your doubts and believe your believing.

Norman 

{tag_author}

Are You Receiving From God?

Posted By at Wednesday, September 30, 2015

There are many books on the issue and teachers often come up with complicated formulas and doctrines on how to receive blessings from God. Look around for the fruit of these teachers and their teachings. You may find that many lives are lacking and some are even ship wrecked by their false doctrines. The Bible is the Word of God and is the Lord Jesus Christ’s promises and His Instructions to you to live in His promises. Without following the most Important Instructions you will fail in all you do.

Mark 12:30 And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.

This is the first commandment and I believe the next most Important Instruction is in Matthew 6:33 "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you."

Without these two commandments being obeyed, there is no relationship or fellowship to communicate with or hear from heaven!

Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

God created you to love Him and to seek Him with all your heart - all the time.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

If you will love Him with all your heart and seek Him first you will hear Him every time!

John 14:21 He who has My commandments and keeps them it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.

Matthew 6:24 No one can serve two masters for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.

Revelations 2:4 Nevertheless I have this against you that you have left your first love.

1 John 2:15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

Matthew 7:7-8 Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives and he who seeks finds and to him who knocks it will be opened.

It's simple if you follow His instructions.

Norman
 

{tag_author}

Are You Hearing What God is Saying?

Posted By at Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Are you like little Samuel? Saying; "Speak Lord, for I am listening."

1 Sam 3:9 Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and it shall be, if He calls you, that you must say, "Speak, Lord, for Your servant hears." So Samuel went and lay down in his place.

Learning to recognize God's voice is not a skill that's acquired overnight, because God speaks to us at different times, in different settings and in different ways.

  1. It requires you to mature spiritually. In John 10:4 Jesus said His sheep follow Him because they know His voice. Did you notice, Jesus said that His "sheep", not His lambs who know His voice. Baby sheep just follow adult sheep until their senses are trained. Thank God there's grace for those who are immature. If your Spiritual ears are not yet developed, God will work with you until you learn to recognize His voice.
  2. It requires guidance and confirmation from Godly leadership. Heb 13:17 Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you . Who's your Spiritual leader?
  3. Don't be limited to your previous experiences. God spoke to Moses on a mountain that shook. He spoke to Elijah through a still small voice. So don't limit God; He will speak to you through The Word, through those qualified to teach you His Word, through a song, sometime even through a difficult situation the devil brings along, and even your own thoughts and desires when you're submitted to Him. The key is to stay close to God and keep your heat open.
  4. Above all else, it requires obedience. Psalm 27:8, "When You said, "Seek My face," my heart said to You, "Your face, Lord, I will seek."

When it comes to hearing from God, what's your response time?

"When I get around to it?… I'll see if I can fit you in!… I'll think about it!"

All wrong! God speaks, and continues to speak, to those who listen and obey, and continue to listen and obey His Word!

Norman