When the prophet Nathan exposed King David's sin with a parable, David wrote this psalm of repentance. He realized that though he had sinned against Bathsheba's husband and the people of Israel, ultimately his sin was against God who had trusted him with position and authority. All sin is ultimately a sin against God who alone is the standard of righteousness. We sin against His goodness and grace. We sin against His mercy and love. Whenever His sentence is against us, He is perfectly justified in pronouncing it.
Deuteronomy 6:4-5 (NIV) 4Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.
The Jewish people refer to this passage as the Shema. Jesus said it was the greatest of all the laws of God. He also said that all the Law could be summed up in this passage. First it tells us that JHWH (LORD in all caps) is our Elohim (plural for God in Hebrew). Then it tells us JHWH is one. Here we have the mystery of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They are one. There is no difference amongst them. Religions with many gods distinguish the differences and purposes for each god, but the God of the Hebrews is one. We refer to that as monotheism. A perfect God can only be one.
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.-Proverbs 22:6
Proverbs 22:6 is a well-known verse. It's often quoted when a child is going astray. It says, "Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it." I think that is a great verse, but here is the question I want to ask you, if you are a parent: Have you done your part? Have you actually trained up a child in the way they should go?
Romans 12:1,2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
Not only do we receive God's power in our lives when we acknowledge our weakness, but God's power in us works best when we keep the Gospel at the forefront of our minds. The Gospel declares to us our utter dependence on Him, His mercy, and saving grace. When we rely on His strength alone, we receive freedom and peace. But when we rely on our own abilities, talents, or intelligence, we crowd out the potential for God's power. Like the apostle Paul, we should rejoice whenever we remember our weaknesses because then we will be able to see God's full work and power within us.
When we speak of the power of the Holy Spirit, many people--even Christians--misunderstand the meaning of power. They tend to define power as the world defines it.
In the world's view, power conveys the ability to control people, events, and circumstances for our own advantage. In the world, power brings independence and self-sufficiency, with no need for God's help or the assurance of others.
While many devote their lives to achieving this goal, this type of power can never satisfy the soul or bring joy or peace. The world's power is temporary, leaving a person always wanting more.
The Holy Spirit of God is a gift that is given to all who trust in Jesus Christ. Apart from the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in the life of every believer, it is impossible to live a life of obedience to God.
Only when we surrender to the control of the Holy Spirit will we experience freedom from the control of sin and the flesh. Paul explains our need for the Holy Spirit in the first half of Romans 8.
Proverbs 21:3, 27 (NIV) 3.To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice.
27.The sacrifice of the wicked is detestable- how much more so when brought with evil intent!
God doesn't need your offering in the plate, but you need to give it! Sometimes we get the idea that if we give to God or make some kind of sacrifice, God is indebted to us. Maybe then He will overlook our sins that we refuse to forsake. The justification in our minds goes something like this: "I don't want to give up this thing that I know is wrong, so instead, I will give to the needy." Good deeds don't nullify evil ones. They don't earn you points in heaven. We are expected to do good when we are able to. That is simply the right thing to do. Not to do so is evil.
Proverbs 12:16 (NIV) 16A fool shows his annoyance at once, but a prudent man overlooks an insult.
17:9-10 (NIV) 9.He who covers over an offense promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends. 10.A rebuke impresses a man of discernment more than a hundred lashes a fool.
Julio Ruibal was one of the instrumental men in the revival of Cali, Columbia. He was a man of prayer and fasting. After coming to Cali to minister, he joined the association of pastors and met with them regularly. At one meeting, someone said something that offended him. He decided to quit going. After separating himself for some time, the Lord spoke to his heart and told him to refuse to be offended. He returned to the group with his apologies, a humbler man.
Hebrews 12:2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
1 Thessalonians 2:11-12 as you know how we exhorted, and comforted, and charged every one of you, as a father does his own children, that you would walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.
When the twelve spies were sent into Canaan to spy out the land, ten returned with a bad report. Their assessment was that it was impossible to conquer the land that God had promised them. Forgetting how God had led them with a pillar of fire by night, and fed them manna from heaven during the day, brought forth water out of a rock, and parted the Red Sea, they saw the situation with only their natural eyes, failed to walk by faith, and succumbed to fear.
Leviticus 16:13-16, 21-22 And he shall put the incense on the fire before the Lord, that the cloud of incense may cover the mercy seat that is on the Testimony, lest he die. 14 He shall take some of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it with his finger on the mercy seat on the east side; and before the mercy seat he shall sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times. 15 "Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat. 16 So he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, for all their sins; and so he shall do for the tabernacle of meeting which remains among them in the midst of their uncleanness.