Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Christians Have A Wonderful Expectation

Philippians 3:18-21, “(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.) For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.”

I love the contrast between verses 18-19 and 20-21. In verses 18-19 above, we see the unsaved person for whom the apostle Paul wept. Paul says the end of the unsaved Christ-rejecter will be destruction! Their God is their belly, living only to eat, drink and enjoy life to the fullest. They have no regard for God. Their glory is their shame. They mind earthly things. This describes 97% of American society!

But in verses 20-21 we see the born-again Christian, whose home and family are in Heaven, from whence we look for the blessed Savior Jesus Christ to return. As believers we have the wonderful hope and expectation of having our body changed, ultimately fashioned like unto the Lord's glorious body. I have suffered from stenosis and radiculopathy in my neck since 2004. I was rear-ended by a church bus in 1992, which misaligned my neck, leading to Cervical Degenerative Disk Disease 12 years later. My type of work as a mechanic years ago worsened my condition, and then I fell in 2004, which added to my health afflictionsI had two major neck surgeries in 2009 and 2010, which were both nightmares. I have a titanium plate and six surgical screws in my neck. I suffer with constant toothache-like pain in my neck, in the bony area in back. I very much await and look forward to God's promise in Philippians 3:21. I look forward to not being in bodily pain anymore. What a glorious day that will be! God is always good. Praise the Lord anyhow!!!

Dear reader, if you don't take the Holy Bible seriously, you should. You have so much to gain or lose! Romans 8:32, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” I love that! The apostle Paul reminds us as believers that if God was willing to sacrifice His own Son for us, then how much more shall God give unto us “ALL THINGS.” The Lord wants us to be happy in Heaven. When I hear my family say they want something, it becomes a priority with me! Not only my family, but everybody in my life. When I hear someone say that they are saving up for something, or that they would like to have something, I do what I can to meet that need or desire. Why do I do that? It is because I love others! 

I recently heard my 6-year-old grandson mention that he would like some aftershave cologne. Obviously he doesn't shave at age 6. So I asked permission from his parents and the next time I saw him, gave him my 'Brut 33' aftershave cologne. (That's not my favorite brand, it was just what the store had available.) Luigi was happy when I remembered what he had said. He didn't ask for it, he didn't expect it, he just wanted to smell nice like his dad, and I wanted to do something that would surprise him and make him happy. I live like that!

If you are a part of my life, I listen to everything you say, because I love you with God's love. When I used to attend Watchcare meetings at Harvest Baptist Church on Guam, I heard a young woman say that she wanted to get a capo for her guitar. She was just thinking out loud in the distance. At the next Watchcare meeting, I surprised her with a capo that I bought for her. I love to surprise people with good things, to show God's love and make them happy. I have fun living like that! I love giving things away and sharing. If I, being a sinful human being, can do nice things for others sinners; then how much more will our perfect heavenly Father do good things for His saints that love Him? I believe God will surprise us in Heaven with good things, because He loves us. God will give us anything that is right, holy, good and known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. What saith the Scripture? ...

1st Corinthians 2:9-10, “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.”

We see in verse 10 that verse 9 refers (in this context) to the wonderful truths of the Word of God. The truths and promises of God's Word are the greatest possession I own! Thank God for the inspired King James Bible!!! Albeit, I believe this Scripture also refers to God's goodness in general. Jesus encouraged the apostle Peter in John 14:1-3, with a promise applicable to all saints, that He is preparing a home for us in Heaven! Amen and amen! The Lord knows that I desire a nice pedal steel guitar in Heaven. There are several dozen different brands of steel guitars. I simply have not been able to play more than a handful of them in my lifetime. I wish I could play them all, and pick the one that I like the best! The same is true of musical amplifiers. I have never played through most brands of amplifiers, but I sure want to. I have often asked the Lord to choose the best pedal steel guitar and amplifier, that HE KNOWS will make me the happiest, giving me that allusive sound I have been seeking my whole life! 

If you are a musician you know what I am talking about! If you play the violin, then you have always wanted to play a $3,000,000 Stradivarius! Scientists have analyzed the Stradivarius, trying to figure out what makes it sound like no other violin sounds! Check on YouTube and you will be amazed. I bought a fiddle to learn to play, but gave it to my daughter, because my neck injury won't allow me to hold the violin. It hurts too bad. What a beautiful musical instrument the violin is! The violin is a very challenging instrument to learn, with a steep learning curve. I think the violin is more difficult to master than the steel guitar. It really comes down to whether or not you have the desire to stick with it. When you're as good as you want to be, you're as good as you're going to get. I absolutely love the steel guitar! Praise the Lord!!! Here are a bunch of recent recordings that I made with my steel guitars in 2020. I'd love to record an album with Christians singing a bunch of Gospel songs. 

If you are a born-again believer, your future is so bright that you should be wearing sun-glasses! I know there are A LOT of hurting Christians, whose marriages failed (like mine), and suffer with health afflictions (like I do), and battle depression (as I do), and you are barely hanging in there day by day, knowing that you've only made it this far BY GOD'S GRACE. God's grace will lead us all home too dear suffering friend. Our God is still on His throne! We are living today in insane, perilous and strange times, but God saw it all coming, and is calm in the storm! I heard a wonderful MP3 sermon yesterday by Pastor Jack Hyles (1926-2001) called:  'Don't Be Afraid Of Tomorrow, God Is Already There.'

When I attended Hyles-Anderson College and was a member of the First Baptist Church of Hammond (1985-1993), Brother Hyles used to often sing a song called: 'My Lord Knows The Way Through The Wilderness.' Here are the lyrics. Here's the MP4 if you'd like to download it. What a precious truth! My Lord know the way through the Wilderness, all I have to do is FOLLOW! Proverbs 3:5-7, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.” I am so glad that we don't have to understand God to please Him, we just need to TRUST HIM! I honestly cannot understand most things about God. The older I get the less I understand, but the more I trust my blessed Redeemer!!! 

I will close with one of my favorite passages of Scripture. The Bible acknowledges that we cannot see Jesus, yet we believe and love Him as saints, and we have an inexplicable joy that floods our soul continually. Oh it is wonderful to be a Christian!!! ...

1st Peter 1:7-9, “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.”

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