Philippians Day 3
Yes, and I will rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, 20 as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death.
Affection and Appreciation create an Awareness in those who believe. There are things that the believer can know in Christ. Affection and Appreciation for Christ will keep us in an awareness of what God is doing in and through our lives. Affection and Appreciation will keep us aware of God’s power and possibilities. We abide in this affection and appreciation we rejoice in Him. In our rejoicing, we express our affection and appreciation for Jesus. And God can work freely in and through those who live in an affection and appreciation for Christ. Even when it seems that others are taking advantage or advancing ahead of us, rejoicing in our affection and appreciation for Christ will lead us in victory. Rejoice! Bless the Lord! Let your affection and appreciation be known to all and in all. Jesus is Lord and we honor Him in our praise and thanksgiving. And where there are affection and appreciation for Jesus, there is an awareness of Jesus that leads us in His victory and deliverance.
Philippians Day 2
For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. Philippians 1:8-11
Another key to a good and full relationship is love and affection. Relationships just don’t work without love and affection. Our relationship with God is dependent on love and affection too. The key to this Christian life is based on the love of God and our love for God. The love of Christ and the love for Christ produces a love in Christ for others. Paul writes, “I hold you in my heart…” and “I yearn for you with the affection of Christ.” Love is the glue that holds this life together. Of course there is no love without faith. Love creates Hope that inspires Faith and it takes faith to love. Love wins. When we let the love of Christ and for Christ rule in our hearts, that love allows the Holy Spirit to produce a good work in us and through us. Jesus asked Peter, “Do you love me?” Believing in Jesus involves loving Jesus because we believe that He loves us. If we want our relationships to work, we must let love work in our relationships with God, self and others. When we live in the love of God, the righteousness of God lives in us.
Mark Day 48
Read: Mark 16
So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. 20 And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by accompanying signs
Those who believe that Jesus is seated at the right hand of God, behave that way. They go out and preach the full gospel, expecting God to reveal his power and passion in their lives as they go. God has called us to live, believing that He is Lord and King of all. That picture changes the perspective of true believers. Now we live in the victory of Calvary. Now we speak the good news that Jesus lives and rules overall and we expect to see that in our everyday lives. So, we speak the word, believe the word, looking to see the word of God revealed in our world. Throw any other thoughts out the window. There’s no room for doubt and disbelief. Jesus said, “go” and the disciples “went” preaching, sharing, EVERYWHERE while the Lord worked with them and CONFIRMED the message by accompanying signs. Let that truth become your truth today!
Mark Day 47
Read: Mark 16
And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name, they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover. Mark 16:15-18
The message is clear but is the mind? Those who believe have the power of the gospel in hand. The victory of Calvary belongs to those who believe. Those who believe and are baptized have the gospel and the power of that gospel. Jesus came to the disciples and rebuked their unbelief. Why? Because it’s not whether we have belief, the problem is our unbelief. Those who believe can walk in the unbelievable, in the victory of Calvary. Jesus came not only to save us from our sin but to save us for the wickedness of sin, giving us the power to overcome sin and its sickness. But we need to deal with our unbelief. That’s what happens when Jesus comes into the room and we spend time with Him. Listen to His words and live His word and we will see of His word. Jesus said, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to all creation.” It’s time to drop our unbelief and live out what we believe in. And Jesus said that signs would follow those who believe. His words!
Mark Day 46
Read: Mark 16:1-20
Afterward he appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at table, and he rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen.
Sometimes we need God to rebuke our unbelief because it’s inhibiting us from our inheritance. Sometimes there is the belief in our hearts but unbelief in our heads. The two can and do co-exist. Just letting unbelief live in our heads will make our hearts hard. That hardened heart won’t let faith out and certainly won’t let faith change the mind. The disciples had believed Jesus but couldn’t believe in the resurrection that Jesus had promised. Besides, people don’t rise from the dead and anyone who has been dead for three days is done. It’s over! Isn’t that what would go through our minds if we were them? And now fear had set in and maybe regret for believing in the unbelievable. Belief and unbelief can co-exist. It had happened on the mountain in Matthew 17 when the disciples could not cast out the demon in the boy. And here it was again. For faith to work the heart must help the head focus on the word of God, not the words from the past or from people. Sometimes the only way to make that change is to receive the rebuke of God. Don’t make a request and then find a reason for not getting it. Rebuke and renounce the unbelief and respond in belief. Don’t let unbelief negate your belief.
Mark Day 45
Read: Mark 15:42-47
Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, took courage and went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Mark 15:43
It was courage for a dead man, but it was the first act of courage from someone other than Jesus. Finally, someone decided to say something or do something about what they believed. Of course, Jesus is destined for the cross. He laid down His own life for us, no one took it from Him. Jesus was going to rise from the dead, victorious. But Joseph didn’t know that really. He too was looking for the kingdom and Jesus represented that kingdom and the cost of enjoying that kingdom. Often courage is inspired by another’s courage. Courage in encouraging and inspiring. Finally, someone had the courage to be a friend of Jesus. And that courage set the scene for a mighty act of God, the resurrection. And Joseph didn’t just take the body, we prepared it right for burial. Courage doesn’t just react, that would really be fear, but it responds with respect. Joseph believed in and respected Jesus. I’m sure he was disappointed, but he found the courage to be the friend of a dead man. That courage set the stage for a mighty revelation of the power of God. That’s how things happen in the kingdom of God, with faith that has the courage to act. Remember, faith without action is dead. Let the courage of Jesus inspire you to have the courage too.
Mark Day 44
Read Mark 14:16-41
And someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink, saying, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to take him down. Mark 15:36
Be careful to avoid selfish love, it will abandon all compassion and concern for its own entertainment. We think it is far away and off in some dark corner but it’s closer than we realize. Selfish love lives in the heart of man. Selfish love will dare to mock and mistreat the one who simply cares. Even those dying in the selfish love mocked Jesus on the cross. It’s a sad commentary on the life of the lost. Even the little effort to provide Jesus with some relief before death is put on hold to hopefully be entertained once again by the power Jesus walked in. Being so consumed with selfish love the crowd couldn’t see the power of God to hang on a cross unjustly for us who deserved to hang on that cross justly. Selfish love can’t see God. Selfish love sees the situation as a selfish opportunity to be accepted by the crowd and to see something that it can talk about later. Selfish love never sees past the moment and that is why it ends in death even before death comes. Hell is manifested here in and through selfish love. And Jesus went there for us so that we could know what love truly looks like. In the Savior’s love, there is true love and life.
Mark Day 43
Read Mark 15:1-15
And Pilate again asked him, “Have you no answer to make? See how many charges they bring against you.” 5 But Jesus made no further answer, so that Pilate was amazed. Mark 15:4-5
There is hardly anything more dangerously powerful to our lives than the love of self. That doesn’t necessarily mean that we like ourselves, but we tend to love and trust what we have made of ourselves. It’s that love of self that keeps us from hearing and believing the words of Jesus. We want things done for ourselves, but we don’t what to change anything about ourselves. We want what we want the way we want it. That’s the epitome of sin. That’s what was happening in Pilot’s chambers. All the miracles, signs, and wonders meant nothing to a people who love themselves more than anyone or anything else. We become comfortable with ourselves and the lives we’ve made for ourselves even if we don’t like either. It was and is the love of self that put our Savior on that cross. We don’t usually realize it but that love of self is really hate and we will hate anyone or anything that tries to change us. The power of sin rips out our eyeballs so that we cannot see the love of God.
Mark Day 42
Read: Mark 14: 53-72
And Jesus said, “I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven. Mark 14:62
Our skin seeks the safety of the group rather than God. It’s the spirit that seeks the salvation and safety of God. Unless our spirit is strong, our skin will surrender to the intimidation of the crowd or the crises. Earlier that night, Peter had fallen asleep rather than pray. His spirit was weak, but Jesus’ spirit was strong. Jesus wouldn’t play their little games of half-truths with no hope. Jesus had the courage to speak the truth. Speaking the truth wasn’t about pointing out the injustice of that night but rather pointing out the truth of God’s word. The enemy can’t handle God’s word. Remember, in all of this Jesus had to live life like you and I can. Jesus knew the presence of God and the power of God. Jesus had spent His time in prayer earlier. In the presence of God, we find the power and perspective of God in our lives. We reach for the eternal from our spirit and when the supernatural presence of God becomes real to us in our spirit, we will have the supernatural power to stand in our skin.