Jesus’ Feet

After our pastor’s recent sermon from Luke 7:38, my heart was led to think of what it means to be “at Jesus’ feet.”

 “Behold, a woman in the city, who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat dining in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, and stood at his feet behind him weeping and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.” Luke 7:38.”

“Gracious tears are wept at Jesus’ feet. Oh, if you would have your heart broken until the rock shall gush with rivers of repentance, stand at Jesus’ feet. Stand there now. If you would have a tender heart, think of the Beloved who died for you! Think of how those feet were pierced. This woman could not see that, for it was not then done; but you can see it, and note where the nail has bored each blessed foot.” At His Feet Charles Spurgeon

The first reference of Jesus’ feet is in Matthew 15:30

In recognition of Jesus’ power to heal, “great multitudes came unto him, having with them those that were lame, blind, dumb, maimed, and many others, and cast them down at Jesus’ feet; and he healed them:”

There were those who fell at Jesus’ feet to worship Him, and those who sat at His feet.

We come to His feet to pray for loved ones, knowing by experience He is the only one who can save.

Jairus, a rule of the synagogue, whose daughter was ill, ”fell down at Jesus’ feet, and besought him that he would come into his house:” Luke 8:41

In  Mark 7:25 “a certain woman, whose young daughter had an unclean spirit, heard of him, and came and fell at his feet:

We find in Luke 8:35 the story of the man who had a legion of demons in him who used to cut himself, and who lived among the tombs.

“They went out to see what was done; and came to Jesus, and found the man, out of whom the demons were departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus.”

At Jesus’ feet” is the fitting place for a willing learner.

“She had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word”; Luke 10:39

In the healing of the ten lepers, only one returned to thank Jesus and acknowledge His healing.

“And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan.” Luke 17:16

It is at Jesus’ feet that we recognize our place before Him and honor and acknowledge His power and authority over all things.

Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.” John 11:32

After His resurrection “when they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.” Matthew 28:9

When we fall before Him, it is His feet we see and touch. We come to Him in gratitude for His condescension to us, for He walked this dusty earth to proclaim the kingdom of God, our Father; then climbed that hill to Golgatha to have those precious feet pierced for our sake.

His disciples tarried in obedience to the Master and were blessed to see those glorious feet as He ascended back to the Father to rule in power and as our High Priest to intercede for us.

“For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.”
1 Corinthians 15:25

“And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,” Ephesians 1:22

We live under His authority, no longer enemies but friends and family ~ His church. We will not come under His feet in the wrath of God, but we will rule with Him at His feet, forevermore. We bow before Him now or will be brought under His feet in condemnation forever.

When He Reigns
“I think I see the angels and the blood-bought ones beginning one of their celestial chorales. Hear them as they begin the rapturous strain! Their notes how sweet, how seraphic, as they praise the eternal Father and the glorious Lamb of God and worship!

“We hear the song. How it swells! Listen to the soft touches of the harpists playing on their harps! Do you see how the singers and the players of instruments seem caught up in the ecstasy? But notice! as the song rises they begin to bow. As it rises higher they bow lower, and lower, and lower.

Listen!

“The enthusiastic fervour of their love has made them lift their loudest hallelujah; and lo ~ they cast their crowns at his sacred feet. The whole company are still lifting up the song to its utmost glory, but immediately they fall on their faces, prostrate before the throne. “At his feet” is their loftiest position. Let us imitate them, and making the worship more ecstatic than before, bow before him.

Lo, at his feet, with awful joy,
The adoring armies fall!
With joy they shrink to nothing there,
Before the eternal All.

“So let us praise him for all that he has done for us; and, as we praise him, let us sink lower, and lower, and lower, until in ourselves we are nothing and only Christ lives in us. Let no thought of self, nor wish for self, nor dream of self, intrude, but let Jesus be all in all.

“At his feet,” there our heaven shall be found. When our soul is deepest bathed in grateful praise we shall fall down on our faces and worship the Lamb. May the Lord bless you, and keep you at his feet for ever. Amen. At Jesus’ Feet Charles Spurgeon

 “And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever andever.” Revelation 514; Revelation 19:4

Image:Google

A Sinner’s Prayer

In 2014, at the age of 75, I wrote this hymn as a witness of how, over many years, the Lord brought me to Himself. I set it to a tune to be sung as a solo but I plan to use a  familiar tune, instead, so that it can be sung in corporate worship. It is a hymn all true Christians should be able to sing.

I share only the text in this post. I will share the musical version when it is available.

A SINNER’S PRAYER

He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them. Psalm 145:19

1. LORD, be merciful to me, a sinner.
What have I to bring to you?
I am poor, and lost, and helpless;
Show and teach me what is true.

Hear me calling, gracious Father,
I am deaf and cannot see.
I am hopeless; I am dying.
No one here can answer me.

2.  Lord, you said that you would save me 
If I trust in you alone.
What is faith; what is believing?
It is your work, not my own.

Hear me crying, dear Lord Jesus;
Hear my pleading; see my tears.
In my sin and in my anguish,
I have struggled through the years.

3. All my trying, all my labor
Are but vanity to you.
I am dust in need of Spirit.
Breathe in me your life anew.

I confess Lord, that I need you.
I repent of all my sin.
By your Spirit, live within me.
Be my strength and be my Friend.

4. Lord, you promised life abundant
When you came and bled and died.
Let me see and hear you clearly —
Jesus Christ, the crucified.

O, I can see you, I can hear you.
You have opened eyes and ears.
You have covered sin and sorrow;
You have banished all my fears.

5. Lord, let this poor, ransomed sinner
Know you, love you, and obey;
With your guidance, daily leading,
Showing me your will and way.

Hear me calling, blessed Redeemer,
In my nights and in my days.
I am helpless, but your grace, Lord,
Will lift these weak lips to praise.

© Fran Rogers 2014

Ten Most Important Words ~ A Survey

Continuing our thoughts on words, I want your input on this one, and it is not as easy as you may think.

Words form our thoughts.  Even images are described by words.  Words convey our thoughts in our speech.  Our thoughts and words initiate our actions.  The words that we live by determine our relationship with God and with others.

Concerning the fact that words are our means of communication, and in them is meaning in how we think, speak and live, what would you consider the ten most important words in the English language? The words we are looking for are those that pertain to our relationships with God and others ~ from a Christian view.

At some time in life, we may come to feel the point of the following video. What are the words we want to hear, that we need to hear and to use often?

If you can’t think of ten, share as many as you wish to ~ even five or less. If only one, we welcome your comment. Take your time ~ we are in no hurry for this.

LOVE  may very well be the most popular word and if so, it must be with a proper understanding of the source ~ GOD, Himself.

 Thank you for your response.

Image: Pixabay
Image: Pixabay

Words of Life ~ BLOOD

We are blessed again to have Jim from The Domain for Truth post a special Word of Life. Thank you, Jim. You are a precious example and a great teacher of the Life we have in Christ.

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(All Bible verses are from the NASB with Strong’s definitions)

How rich is the theme that leads us to the blood of Christ – the blood of the everlasting covenant through which His people are united in Him for eternity.

There are 392 references to blood in the Bible (KJV) with meanings.

A study of the meaning of blood shows the wonderful grace of God through Jesus Christ.

The Old Testament lays the foundation.  Starting with the book of Genesis, we see the early use of the term blood testifies of the seriousness of sin.

Old Testament H1818
םדָּ dâm, dawm; from H1826; blood (as that which when shed causes death) of man or an animal; by analogy, the juice of the grape; figuratively (especially in the plural) bloodshed (i.e. drops of blood):—blood(-y, -guiltiness), (-thirsty), + innocent

In Genesis 4:10-11 we find what God says the blood of the innocent did after the matter with Cain murdering Abel:

“He said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to Me from the ground.
Now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand.

In the Noahic covenant, God established the penalty of blood for blood.

“Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made man.” Genesis 9:6

Then there is the extended discussion in the Laws of the Old Testament about the sacrificial system which involves blood.  Why is it a bloody matter?

“For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.” Leviticus 17:11

That is the Old Testament reference from Leviticus the writer of Hebrews uses:

“And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.” Hebrews 9:22

This verse states that without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. It is fitting imagery given to show blood is needed for physical life – so in the spiritual realm, the blood of Christ is needed for spiritual life.

The blood of Christ is sufficient for the forgiveness of sins; an accomplishment that is multi-faceted.  We will survey some of these aspects below. We can learn much about the order of salvation from tracing the theme of the blood of Christ.

New Testament G129
αἷμα haîma, hah’-ee-mah; blood, literally (of men or animals), figuratively (the juice of grapes) or specially (the atoning blood of Christ); by implication, bloodshed, also kindred:—blood.

The Blood of Christ Justifies 

God is a Holy and Just Judge. In order for us to be saved from hell, Jesus Christ had to pay the penalty for our sins.  Justification is to be declared legally righteous on the basis of what Christ has done.  Yet Romans 5:8-9 teaches that justification is accomplished by the blood of Christ:

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.”

Verse 8 reveals that God has shown His love to sinners. The means is stated in the second half of the verse – Christ died for us.  Verse 9 unpacks this truth by revealing to us that believers have been justified by His blood.  The effect of being justified by His blood means we are saved from God’s wrath and judgment.  What wonder – that the blood of Christ can declare us legally righteous!

The Blood of Christ Provides Propitiation

Remember Romans 5:9 – the blood of Christ justifies us and therefore we shall be saved from the wrath of God.  To appease the wrath of God against sinners, that is, to have the wrath of God against us satisfied, requires the blood of Christ (Romans 5:9). This is called the doctrine of propitiation.

Those who trust in the atoning work of Christ live in gratitude for His work of grace to and in us.

The Blood of Christ Redeems 

The Bible reveals that as nonbelievers we were at one time slaves to sin.

“For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.” Romans 6:20

In the New Testament era, the purchase of slaves by a new master was called redemption. God uses this motif to say He has paid the cost to make us His people that we may be servants of righteousness (Romans 8:6).

 “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace” Ephesians 1:7

Redemption is only through Christ’s blood. This is not because we deserved it. No – the verse makes it clear – it is because of the riches of God’s grace.

This doctrine has implications and practical application for church members.

“Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.” Acts 20:28

The Blood of Christ Provides Communion with God

When I say the blood of Christ provides communion with God, I mean that the blood of Christ brings us close to God.

“Remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” Ephesians 2:12-13

Verse 12 explains our condition before we became believers – we were separated and far from God.  But in verse 13 we see the opposite for us as believers.  How are we brought near to God?

By what means? – by the blood of Christ. Knowing what it cost should change how we view our time with God and our worship.

The Blood of Christ Sanctifies

The blood of Christ also washes us and changes us in a practical and ethical way.

“Therefore, Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate.” Hebrews 13:12

Christ sanctifies us. That’s amazing, since Christians often think of the Holy Spirit’s sanctification. The truth is that it is both Christ and the Spirit!  Yet what is the means by which Christ sanctifies us? The verse here says, through His own blood.  This is associated with the crucifixion of Christ as the verse references His suffering outside the gate of Jerusalem.

This should change the way we view holiness and sanctification.  It is a privilege to pursue godliness to please God and Christ in light of what Christ has done for us.

The shedding of the blood of Christ is the means God has provided to save us.  Tracing the theme of the blood of Christ reveals the beautiful jewels of Christ’s work of salvation.  His blood has justified us, provided propitiation, redeemed us, draws us near to God, and sanctifies us in Christ, making us His – here, now, and forever.

Have you appreciated these treasured truths of the Gospel to such a point that you are motivated to serve and live for Christ? Let this be our prayer.

“And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb
and because of the word of their testimony,
and they did not love their life even [when faced with death.”
Revelation 12:11

Related Article: A Bloody Crown, A Bloody Cross, A Bloody Sacrifice

 

The Law of the Lord is Perfect

English: Scroll of the Psalms

The Law of the Lord is Perfect is the text of Psalm 19:7-11, which speaks of the work of God’s Word in the life of the believer.

The Law of the Lord Is Perfect        

The law of the Lord is perfect,
Converting the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure,
Making wise the simple.

(refrain)
More to be desired are they than gold.
Yea, than much fine gold,
Sweeter also than honey
And the honeycomb.

The statutes of the Lord are right,
Rejoicing the heart:
The commandment of the Lord is pure,
Enlightening the eyes.
(refrain)

 The fear of the Lord is clean,
Enduring forever;
The judgments of the Lord are true
And righteous altogether.
(refrain)
Music by Joanne Roberts Graham  

Dear Father in heaven. Lead us to meditate on your law day and night. On this special day, enable your ministers to proclaim your Word in power as you open our hearts to hear and respond. Use your Word today for conversion, wisdom, rejoicing, and enlightenment for your glory. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Google

Lo, He Comes with Clouds Descending

This hymn was unknown to me until a few years ago when I purchased an album by the Cambridge Singers under the direction of John Rutter. This rendition sounds like the prelude to Jesus’ triumphant return in His great glory. The second is a quieter, more personal expression.

Between the two are the lyrics to this hymn written by John Cennick, Collection of Sacred Hymns 1752, republished & altered by Charles Wesley, 1758. The tune Helmsley is usually attributed to Thomas Olivers, a Welsh Methodist preacher and hymn-writer but this hymn is sung to other tunes, also. This has been my favorite and seems to fit the text better than others. (The first rendition uses first, second, and last verses.)

“Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him.
Rev. 1:7 

Lo! he comes, with clouds descending,
Once for favored sinners slain;
Thousand, thousand saints attending
Swell the triumph of his train:
Alleluia! alleluia! alleluia!
Christ the Lord appears on earth to reign.

Every eye shall now behold him,
Robed in dreadful majesty;
Those who set at nought and sold him,
Pierced, and nailed him to the tree,
Deeply wailing, deeply wailing, deeply wailing,
Shall the true Messiah see.

Every island, sea, and mountain,
Heav’n and earth, shall flee away;
All who hate him must, confounded
Hear the trump proclaim the day;
Come to judgment! Come to judgment!
Come, to judgment, come away!

Now redemption, long expected,
See in solemn pomp appear;
All his saints, by man rejected,
Now shall meet him in the air:
Alleluia! alleluia! alleluia!
See the day of God appear!

The dear tokens of His passion
Still His dazzling body bears;
Cause of endless exultation
To His ransomed worshippers;
With what rapture, with what rapture, with what rapture
Gaze we on those glorious scars!

Yea, amen! let all adore thee,
High on thine eternal throne;
Savior, take the power and glory;
Claim the kingdom for thine own:
O come quickly, O come quickly;
Alleluia! come, Lord, come.

John Cannick 1752
Republished and altered by Charles Wesley in 1758           Tune: Helmsly

“This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven,
shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.”
Acts 1:11

Copy of music score for Lo, He Comes with Clouds Descending

Reflections on a Lord’s Day in the Year of our Lord 2001

(Written on the afternoon of the Lord’s Day, September 23, 2001)

Imagine a soldier in the service of his country who is given an order. Instead of obeying, he says, “I cannot because I have something else  to do.” Or he says, “Let me check with my wife to see if we have other plans.”

As ludicrous as this sounds, was this not Adam’s reason for his dishonorable discharge. And is it not the reason for so many who fail to obey their call to active duty as soldiers of the cross. Our calling on this day of each week is to be in His house of worship to praise Him and to hear His Word, to renew our covenant with Him, and receive His grace for the following week.

In the afternoon of a Lord’s day in 2001, I was thinking of the gift of righteousness, the unspeakable gift of His grace, and the unsearchable riches of Christ  (Ephesians 3:8). My heart was quickened in the understanding of our Father’s overwhelming love and His redeeming grace for us (1 John 4:10).

Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.
2 Corinthians 9:15

We can give to Him only what He has given to us ~ our time and worship, our talents and all this life. The love, the gifts, and fruit of the Spirit ~ all that is from Him ~ when used for His glory, He gives again and again.

Dear Father in heaven, thank you that your grace continues to bring the fruit of the life of Christ in and through us. Fill us with your Holy Spirit today that we may worship you in spirit and truth; to spend this day faithfully with you. Prepare us to serve you this week. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Google

 

A Special Day of Grace ~ for God’s Eternal Glory

Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness;
Fear before Him, all the earth.
Psalm 96:9

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

O worship the King all glorious above.
O gratefully sing his pow’r and HIs love;
Our shield and Defender, the Ancient of Days,
Pavilioned in splendor and girded with praise.”
Robert Grant 1833  ~  Based on Psalm 104

Where Is God?

Unbelievers sometimes ask this question contemptuously, while believers may ask it when overwhelmed by tragedy, trial, and sorrow.

WHERE IS GOD?
Let the Bible tell you.

God is above us.

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust.” Psalm 91:1, 4

God is beneath us.

The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. Deuteronomy 33:27

God is before us.

And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night. Exodus 13:21;

God is behind us.

And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. Isaiah 30:21

God is around us.

Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. Psalm 32:7

God is with us.

Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Isaiah 41:10 (Scripture Tune)

Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Matthew 28:20

God is within us.

Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” 1 Corinthians 3:16
Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit. 1 John 4:13

Take time to meditate on these references and be assured that whatever your circumstances, if you are His child by the birth of His Holy Spirit, the Lord your God is above, beneath, before, behind, around, with, and within you.

Gracious Father, we thank you for your promise to never leave us, nor forsake you; that your presence with us will bring us through whatever we must endure in this life. We praise you that in Christ, we are filled with your grace and wrapped in your glory, now and forever. In Jesus’ name, we thank you and praise you. Amen.
Fran
(If you have read this somewhere else, please let me know. I found this in one of my older journal/notebooks, so I am not positive if it is mine or a copy: I usually note the source of someone else’s work.)

Image:Google

The Power of Redemption

As I continue to study Andrew Murray’s, Humility ~ the Beauty of Holiness, the end of this year seems a good time to share some treasures from this book. We can take into the new year these special truths that can change our thinking and our lives. Considering if we live in pride or humility is to know if we live by the flesh as in the first Adam, or by the Spirit in the second Adam.

Think of the power of sin that was within us before we were born of the Spirit. Then meditate on the following quotes from Andrew Murray. Let us take these with us into the new year as we continue to study the power of the new life, the life of redemption that is ours in our Lord, Jesus Christ.

“Even as we need to look to the first Adam and his fall to know the power of the sin within us, we need to know well the Second Adam and His power to give within us a life of humility as real and abiding and overmastering as has been that of pride.  We have our life from and in Christ, as truly, even more truly, than from and in Adam.”

“The life of God, which in the incarnation entered human nature, is the root in which we are to stand and grow.  It is the same almighty power that worked there, and from then on to the resurrection, which works daily in us.  Our one need (now) is to study and know and trust the life that has been revealed in Christ as the life that is now ours.”

There is no greater blessing than a life of humility; serving the Lord and others.

Gracious Father, we thank you for the new life that is ours in Christ. We praise you that you showed your power in His incarnation, resurrection, and redemption so that we can experience the power of His humility working in us. In Jesus’ name, we thank you and praise you. Amen.
Fran
Have This Mind Among Yourselves
Philippians 2:5-11 Music

Suggested Reading: A Broad Review of Andrew Murray’s Humility