Newsletter #381 - July 2010 - By Shepherds Chapel - http://www.shepherdschapel.com/
When the going gets rough, there are some who are willing to step forward. They courageously dare to stand for God. They are very bold for Father. Let's begin our study in the Book of Mark. Jesus had been crucified.
Mark 15:39 And when the centurion, which stood over against Him, saw that He so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, "Truly this man was the Son of God."
Even the Roman military leader recognized the miracles which had occurred the day of the crucifixion.
Mark 15:40 There were also women looking on afar off: among whom was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the less and of Joses, and Salome; 41(Who also, when He was in Galilee, followed Him, and ministered unto Him;) and many other women which came up with Him unto Jerusalem.
Unlike many of His male disciples who fled Jerusalem, the women believers stuck with Christ, until the end.
Mark 15:42 And now when the even was come, because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the sabbath,
At evening the Passover began. Jesus was crucified on a Wednesday, and He Resurrected the following Sunday.
Mark 15:43 Joseph of Arimathaea, an honourable counsellor, which also waited for the kingdom of God, came, and went in boldly unto Pilate, and craved the body of Jesus.
Things were getting very tough for the followers of Christ. They had been warned exactly what was going to happen to Jesus, but I'm sure it seemed the world was crashing down around them. Joseph of Arimethaea stepped up, and he boldly claimed the body of Jesus Christ. There comes a time in everyone's life, when you need to be courageous and bold. Be willing to stand up for God, when you know that you are in the right.
Mark 15:44 And Pilate marvelled if He were already dead: and calling unto him the centurion, he asked him whether He had been any while dead. 45 And when he knew it of the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.
Joseph, being Mary's uncle, had every right to claim the body of Christ as kinsman redeemer.
Mark 15:46 And he bought fine linen, and took Him down, and wrapped Him in the linen, and laid Him in a sepulchre which was hewn out of a rock, and rolled a stone unto the door of the sepulchre.
Prophecy of Isiah 53:9 was being fulfilled here.
Mark 15:47 And Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses beheld where He was laid.
We saw Joseph of Arimethaea stepping up, when he need to in this Scripture. Are you going to be ready to boldly step forward for God? In order to be bold for God, you must be sure of yourself. You can be sure of yourself by studying the Word and by the unction of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit let's you know you are right, and you can be courageously bold. We are on God's side in this fight, and we have the victory. Turn with me to 2 Corinthians.
2 Corinthians 10:1 Now I Paul myself beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, who in presence am base among you, but being absent am bold toward you: 2 But I beseech you, that I may not be bold when I am present with that confidence, wherewith I think to be bold against some, which think of us as if we walked according to the flesh.
We are going to learn the difference between the boldness which is from men and boldness which is from God in this Chapter. Follow those who teach God's Word, not their own words. God's Word is able to give you strength and the boldness to dare to face Satan himself. You know that it isn't your power Satan fears. It is the power of God within you which Satan fears.
2 Corinthians 10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: 4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)
We don't need weapons of flesh to fight a spiritual war. We have something much mightier at our disposal in the war against Satan. That is the mighty power of God.
2 Corinthians 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; 6 And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.
Do you want to be blessed? Do things according to God's Word. Discipline yourself in His Word.
2 Corinthians 10:7 Do ye look on things after the outward appearance? if any man trust to himself that he is Christ's, let him of himself think this again, that, as he is Christ's, even so are we Christ's. 8 For though I should boast somewhat more of our authority, which the Lord hath given us for edification, and not for your destruction, I should not be ashamed:
The ministry of Christ doesn't tear people down. The true ministry of Christ builds people up. It gives them the strength to survive difficult times.
2 Corinthians 10:9 That I may not seem as if I would terrify you by letters. 10 For his letters, say they, are weighty and powerful; but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.
Paul spoke colloquial Greek. The super preachers in Jerusalem didn't think Paul was a very good preacher.
2 Corinthians 10:11 Let such an one think this, that, such as we are in word by letters when we are absent, such will we be also in deed when we are present.
Paul took a back seat to no one as a preacher. If he need to, Paul could come down on them just as hard in person as he did by letter.
2 Corinthians 10:12 For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.
The super preachers had quite a large ego. They were very good a commending themselves. They were bold for the wrong reasons. Paul would have no part of that.
2 Corinthians 10:13 But we will not boast of things without our measure, but according to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us, a measure to reach even unto you.
God's Word provides the measure. His Word edifies, strengthens, builds and matures us. Paul didn't need men on an ego trip to commend him. Paul didn't seek the super preachers approval.
2 Corinthians 10:14 For we stretch not ourselves beyond our measure, as though we reached not unto you: for we are come as far as to you also in preaching the gospel of Christ: 15 Not boasting of things without our measure, that is, of other men's labours; but having hope, when your faith is increased, that we shall be enlarged by you according to our rule abundantly,
Truth will grow, when it is Christ Who does the edifying rather than super preachers on an ego trip edifying one another. It is Christ Who set the measure long, long, ago. We don't need to compare ourselves by some man's measure, but by the Lord's measure.
2 Corinthians 10:16 To preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, and not to boast in another man's line of things made ready to our hand.
Paul didn't need some man to prepare a sermon for him. His Gospel was the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
2 Corinthians 10:17 But he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. 18 For not he that commendeth himself is approved, but whom the Lord commendeth.
Stay away from self-glorification. Glorify the Lord. It isn't the approval of en you should seek, but rather the approval of the Lord. No matter what they might say, men can't give you eternal life. The Lord can. Let's continue our study in 1 Corinthians.
1 Corinthians 6:1 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?
In many cases, our courts of law are unjust. This has to do with matters that arise between God's saints, that is to say His elect. Paul is encouraging the elect to be courageous, and stand up to do what is right, rather than taking matters of dispute before the courts of injustice.
1 Corinthians 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?
The elect should be able to work out disputes that probably don't amount to anything, rather than ending up in court where both parties are likely to lose. The only ones who will profit from that are the lawyers.
1 Corinthians 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life? 4 If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church.
It would be better to select someone from the church to hear the dispute and make a fair, and impartial, decision, than to take the dispute to a court of law.
1 Corinthians 6:5 I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren?
Isn't there one among the whole congregation of the elect that can step forward with courage to do the right thing? Paul is trying to shame them into being bold.
1 Corinthians 6:6 But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before the unbelievers.
Anyone who thinks they will get justice from the heathen isn't thinking clearly. They have no conscience.
1 Corinthians 6:7 Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because ye go to law one with another. Why do ye not rather take wrong? why do ye not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded?
You probably wouldn't lose as much, even if you received an unfavorable decision from a Christian arbitrator as you would lose, if you win in a court of law. You are not going to find justice in a heathen court. When things get a little rough, find the courage to stand up and do the right thing. Be bold. In conclusion, turn with me to the Book of Hebrews. There was One Who stood up and di the right thing boldly on the cross. His name was Jesus Christ. Things got more than a little rough.
Hebrews 10:19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,
They was a time when only the High Priest could enter into the holy of holies, and then only wih the blood of animals to cover his sins and the sins of the people. After the crucifixion, Jesus rent that veil from top to bottom. Now that Jesus paid the price with His blood, you can enter into the very presence of God.
Hebrews 10:20 By a new and living way, which He hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh;
No longer do you need a man, such as the High Priest, to approach God. As a child of the Living God, you can enter even into the holiest place. Ask Him for edification. Ask Him for courage and strength to stand for what is right, when the going gets a little tough. Be very bold for the Lord. Father is counting on you to do the right thing, when antichrist appears.
In His service,