Tag Archives: mediator

David’s Prayer for Peace (No. 11 of the Series “Prayer: What Difference Does It Make?”)

Today’s message summary of October 15, 2017 from Assistant Pastor Travis Jackson:

Psalm 4:1-8

For the choir director: with stringed instruments. A Davidic psalm. Answer me when I call, God, who vindicates me. You freed me from affliction; be gracious to me and hear my prayer.  How long, exalted men, will my honor be insulted? How long will you love what is worthless and pursue a lie? Selah. Know that the Lord has set apart the faithful for Himself; the Lord will hear when I call to Him. Be angry and do not sin; on your bed, reflect in your heart and be still. Selah. Offer sacrifices in righteousness and trust in the Lord. Many are saying, “Who can show us anything good?” Look on us with favor, Lord. You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and new wine abound. I will both lie down and sleep in peace, for You alone, Lord, make me live in safety.

During our days, we often face emotional distress, and it can cause us to lose out on a good night of rest.  Even I have had nights like this.  Perhaps you have had these, as well.  They may be relational or financial, and they may even be spiritual.  There is no true rest unless there is a relationship with Jesus Christ.

David, in his prayers, is showing us a pattern to model where he was praying in the morning, throughout the day, and into the evening.

Be aware that Psalm 4 was relevant to David and his people, and it is relevant today.  Psalm 4 shows that in our prayers, only God can provide to us long-lasting peace.

Verse 1 of Psalm 4 represents when David speaking to God.  Verses 2-6 has him speaking to men and admonishing them, and the last two verses speak again to God in prayers for peace.  He prayed with intensity, and his prayers were clear in petitioning God for answers.  He prayed in such a way that he made sure that God heard him.  He prayed with a burdened heart, and he experienced peace that would allow him to rest.

David understood that he was not delivered from his circumstances under his own merit or righteousness. He understood that he was being delivered because of God’s righteousness alone.  Your own good deeds are worthless without the grace of God and your own obedience and faithfulness to Him.

David experiences relief when He is assured of God’s presence.  God provides the relief.

In Psalm 3, there is a reference to David’s prayer to God for protection from his son, Absalom. He did not fear those who opposed him, but he, nonetheless, appealed to God for help in overcoming them.  His admonishing of the people in Psalm 4 was directed to the people in a similar way.  God is still the source of his protection and his mercy.

2 Samuel 16:5-14

When King David got to Bahurim, a man belonging to the family of the house of Saul was just coming out. His name was Shimei son of Gera, and he was yelling curses as he approached. He threw stones at David and at all the royal servants, the people and the warriors on Davids right and left. Shimei said as he cursed: Get out, get out, you man of bloodshed, you wicked man! The Lord has paid you back for all the blood of the house of Saul in whose place you became king, and the Lord has handed the kingdom over to your son Absalom. Look, you are in trouble because youre a man of bloodshed!

Then Abishai son of Zeruiah said to the king, Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over and remove his head!

The king replied, Sons of Zeruiah, do we agree on anything? He curses me this way because the Lord told him, Curse David! Therefore, who can say, Why did you do that?’” Then David said to Abishai and all his servants, Look, my own son, my own flesh and blood, intends to take my lifehow much more now this Benjaminite! Leave him alone and let him curse me; the Lord has told him to. Perhaps the Lord will see my affliction and restore goodness to me instead of Shimeis curses today. So David and his men proceeded along the road as Shimei was going along the ridge of the hill opposite him. As Shimei went, he cursed David, threw stones at him, and kicked up dust. Finally, the king and all the people with him arrived exhausted, so they rested there.

David knew that he faced enemies and there was a public display of this contention.  He knows that the opposition he experienced from Shimei was allowed by God in spite of his being anointed as the country’s future king.  It was a reminder to David to seek the Lord for guidance in the midst of his affliction, and it is also a reminder to us to remain prayerful of those who may be going through a struggle, and to not pursue any condemnation.

Our posture towards those who speak falsehoods against us (Psalm 4:2), as it was for David, is to remain focused on Him as the righteous Judge and is the true mediator who separates those who trust in Him with those who have nothing to do with Him.

Proverbs 15:29

The Lord is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous.

Do you recognize that God knows you, as a distinct child of God, and that he hears your prayers?  He does not want you to wallow in your own sin from unchecked anger (Psalm 4:4).  He does give those who are opposed to you to repent from evil and do what is right and proper.

Absalom, David’s son, tried to appear to others as righteous when, in fact, he was using deceit to plot against David (2 Samuel 15:1-12).  Even today, such behavior will not be viewed as honorable by God, and anything good accomplished in this way is nothing more than “filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6).

Psalm 51:16-17

You do not want a sacrifice, or I would give it;

you are not pleased with a burnt offering.

The sacrifice pleasing to God is a broken spirit.

You will not despise a broken and humbled heart, God.

David’s prayer in the final verses in Psalm 4 was a prayer for peace in spite of his enemies.  This attitude is crucial within our Christian walk.  There should be a joy in the heart of the believer that goes beyond the blessing one receives (Psalm 4:7).  There is joy in your fellowship with the Lord.  Nothing in this world will give you peace if has nothing to do with Jesus Christ (and certainly not worldly successes).

If you do not believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, you will not have at this time, or in the future (the afterlife), any peace.

Isaiah 26:3-4

You will keep the mind that is dependent on You in perfect peace, for it is trusting in You. Trust in the Lord forever, because in Yah, the Lord, is an everlasting rock!

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Jesus’ Resurrection: How Does it Benefit Us?

Today’s message summary from Pastor Gus Brown:

Today we are here to acknowledge that Jesus lives! He desires to draw each of us near and embrace us with His love!

He is alive! We do not believe in a myth. He lives, and He lives within us through the Holy Spirit. Paul declared that he could do nothing without Him. He is the One who enables us to live for Him.

Today is a reminder of Jesus’ resurrection. How does His resurrection benefit us? We need to understand that our atonement is based upon the grace and actions of Jesus Christ. Without the resurrection, there is no atonement for our sin. He died for your sin and my sin, and He arose. Many people have a problem with the fact that He is alive, and many question His presence today. We have to come to place to understand that Jesus Christ died for us to atone for our sin, and He rose again to prove that He is the One who saves.

1 Corinthians 15:3-8

3 For I passed on to you as most important what I also received:

that Christ died for our sins

according to the Scriptures,

4 that He was buried,

that He was raised on the third day

according to the Scriptures,

5 and that He appeared to Cephas,

then to the Twelve.

6 Then He appeared to over 500 brothers at one time;

most of them are still alive,

but some have fallen asleep.

7 Then He appeared to James,

then to all the apostles.

8 Last of all, as to one abnormally born,

He also appeared to me.

 

We are to learn of the totality of Jesus’ life on earth; in fact, we are to be reminded of it, because life will take you in many different directions and will even cause you to forget where you are in the faith.

Some people will not agree that there was a resurrection:

1 Corinthians 15:12-20

12 Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say, “There is no resurrection of the dead”? 13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; 14 and if Christ has not been raised, then our proclamation is without foundation, and so is your faith. 15 In addition, we are found to be false witnesses about God, because we have testified about God that He raised up Christ—whom He did not raise up if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, Christ has not been raised. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins. 18 Therefore, those who have fallen asleep in Christ have also perished. 19 If we have put our hope in Christ for this life only, we should be pitied more than anyone.

 

If Jesus Christ was not raised, then our meeting and any preaching on the subject is useless. We would be bearing false witness. But thankfully, that is not the case.

1 Corinthians 15:20-22

20 But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead also comes through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.

 

Jesus Christ indeed was raised from the dead. It is a demonstration of God’s power, and it is the same power that people can see in your own life–a changed life for Jesus Christ. You are the one who has heard the Word from this truth, and you live according to God’s promises because of what He has accomplished for you.

Romans 10:17

So faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the message about Christ.

 

The resurrection declares that He is the Son of God.

Romans 1:1-4

1 Paul, a slave of Christ Jesus, called as an apostleand singled out for God’s good news— 2 which He promised long ago through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures— 3 concerning His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who was a descendant of Davidaccording to the flesh 4 and who has been declared to be the powerful Son of God by the resurrection from the dead according to the Spirit of holiness.

 

Because of our resurrection, He is our mediator.

1 Timothy 2:5-6

5 For there is one God

and one mediator between God and humanity,

Christ Jesus, Himself human,

6 who gave Himself—a ransom for all,

a testimony at the proper time.

 

Hebrews 9:15

Therefore, He is the mediator of a new covenant,so that those who are called might receive the promise of the eternal inheritance, because a death has taken place for redemption from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.

 

Because of the resurrection, He is at the right hand of God.

Acts 2:32-33, 7:55-56

32 “God has resurrected this Jesus. We are all witnesses of this. 33 Therefore, since He has been exalted to the right hand of God and has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit, He has poured out what you both see and hear.

55 But Stephen, filled by the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven. He saw God’s glory, with Jesus standing at the right hand of God, and he said, 56 “Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!”

 

Because of the resurrection, He is able to intercede for us.

Romans 8:34

Who is the one who condemns?

Christ Jesus is the One who died,

but even more, has been raised;

He also is at the right hand of God

and intercedes for us.

 

Hebrews 7:25

Therefore, He is always able to save those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to intercede for them.

 

Because of the resurrection, He will judge us.

2 Corinthians 5:10

For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

 

Because of the resurrection, He is able to heal us.

1 Peter 2:24

He Himself bore our sins

in His body on the tree,

so that, having died to sins,

we might live for righteousness;

you have been healed by His wounds.

 

Because of the resurrection, He is coming back.

John 14:3, 28

3 If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come back and receive you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also.

28 You have heard Me tell you, ‘I am going away and I am coming to you.’ If you loved Me, you would have rejoiced that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I.

 

Acts 1:11

They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up into heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come in the same way that you have seen Him going into heaven.”

 

Because of the resurrection, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess Him.

Philippians 2:10-11

…10 so that at the name of Jesus

every knee will bow—

of those who are in heaven and on earth

and under the earth—

11 and every tongue should confess

that Jesus Christ is Lord,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

Romans 14:11

For it is written:

 

As I live, says the Lord,

every knee will bow to Me,

and every tongue will give praise to God.

 

Because of the resurrection, we act in faith today believing that Jesus hears our prayers and is willing to touch us at our very points of need.


God’s Plan of Salvation

Today’s message summary from Pastor Gus Brown:

We’re going to discuss salvation and having the knowledge as to whether or not a person knows if he or she is saved, and not because of what a person declares on their own–instead, it is a realization of what God says that you need to do to be saved. Many people claim that they are saved but yet they are not living like they are saved.

God has a plan for a person to be saved, and it is up to a person to acknowledge that it is necessary. The plan of salvation from God only comes through Jesus Christ and with the power of the Holy Spirit.

It is good news that God has provided this message to mankind. The good news that we read about in Luke 2 comes from the angel for all to hear.

Luke 2:10-11
10 But the angel said to them, “Don’t be afraid, for look, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people: 11 Today a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord, was born for you in the city of David.

The good news here is just more than just one thing (the announcement of Christ being born). Salvation is important, but it is only the beginning. Look at salvation as a mother giving birth to a child. Salvation is a new birth and we’re just beginning to learn how to walk with God.

What is in this message of good news? The good news refers to a Savior. The Jewish word is Messiah. The good news is used when speaking about salvation. It begins the instruction given to the people concerning what is needed for salvation…how one is to live as a believer in Jesus Christ…how to live as a Christian.

The meaning of the word “news” is new information–unknown information. The phrase “good news” is evangelise–meaning the messenger of good news. To evangelize is to proclaim the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is a gift unto us.

Gospel: good news /good tidings / good story
1. Teaching of Jesus
2. The story of redemption through Jesus Christ.
3. The history of the life of Jesus–from His birth through his youth and the period of life from age 29 (His baptism) through age 33 and His crucifixion.

Luke 1:34-37
34 Mary asked the angel, “How can this be, since I have not been intimate with a man?”

35 The angel replied to her:

“The Holy Spirit will come upon you,
and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.
Therefore, the holy One to be born
will be called the Son of God.
36 And consider your relative Elizabeth—even she has conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called childless. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.”

Man will argue that it is not possible to be saved. A man ultimately does not determine under his own power as to his salvation. The power of the Holy Spirit is the one that moves one to recognize salvation through Jesus Christ. It requires faith and trust in the power of Christ. It means that God is speaking to you about your need for a Savior in recognition of your desire to repent from sin.

1 Corinthians 15:1-3
1 Now brothers, I want to clarify for you the gospel I proclaimed to you; you received it and have taken your stand on it. 2 You are also saved by it, if you hold to the message I proclaimed to you—unless you believed for no purpose. 3 For I passed on to you as most important what I also received:

that Christ died for our sins
according to the Scriptures.

Christ was born to be the Redeemer for all of us.

Acts 2:21
Then everyone who calls
on the name of the Lord will be saved.

Salvation is only possible through Jesus Christ. Man cannot save himself. It is up to each person to accept the gift of salvation. It is impossible for man, but completely possible for God.

It is truly good news that all you need to do is call on His name in order to be saved. After this, the Holy Spirit will be teaching you so much more.

Jesus says that He knows what is in the heart of a person, and He knows your sincerity. In your sincerity, if you call upon His name, He will definitely save you.

People are still caught asking the question “How can I be saved” or “I was saved once and I got saved again.” There is only one way to be saved (acknowledging that you need to repent from sin and acknoweldging that you need Jesus Christ, and you only need to do it once for your lifetime.

Many will need to take this message seriously in order to experience eternal life in Christ.

What else is in this message of good news?

Philippians 2:10-11
10 …so that at the name of Jesus
every knee will bow—
of those who are in heaven and on earth
and under the earth—
11 and every tongue should confess
that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

Jesus is above all others. It removes all questions concerning His deity.

He is our righteousness (1 Corinthians 1:30).
He is our peace with God (Romans 5:1-2; John 16:33; Philippians 3:7)
The good news reveals a joy that is not found in life. There is great joy (Luke 2:10). Also see Romans 5:2, 14:17.

It is a great joy to know that you are forever removed from the wrath of God through His salvation. In His righteousness, you are made righteous before Him because of your faith.

The good news tells us about Jesus as a Mediator.

1 Timothy 2:15
But she will be saved through childbearing, if she continues in faith, love, and holiness, with good judgment.

What does a mediator do for you?

1 John 2:1
My little children, I am writing you these things so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ the Righteous One.

The good news is for all people (Luke 2:10).

Ephesians 2:11-19
11 So then, remember that at one time you were Gentiles in the flesh—called “the uncircumcised” by those called “the circumcised,” which is done in the flesh by human hands. 12 At that time you were without the Messiah, excluded from the citizenship of Israel, and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus, you who were far away have been brought near by the blood of the Messiah. 14 For He is our peace, who made both groups one and tore down the dividing wall of hostility. In His flesh, 15 He made of no effect the law consisting of commands and expressed in regulations, so that He might create in Himself one new man from the two, resulting in peace. 16 He did this so that He might reconcile both to God in one body through the cross and put the hostility to death by it. 17 When the Messiah came, He proclaimed the good news of peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with the saints, and members of God’s household.

Ephesians 3:6
The Gentiles are coheirs, members of the same body, and partners of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.

2 Corinthians 10:15-16
15 We are not bragging beyond measure about other people’s labors. But we have the hope that as your faith increases, our area of ministry will be greatly enlarged, 16 so that we may proclaim the good news to the regions beyond you, not boasting about what has already been done in someone else’s area of ministry.