Sunday, August 14, 2016

Welcome

August is now posted.

Check out the latest Bible Study on "Dispensations"

We will be posting the Glorious Gospel articles individually below. The previous month's publication will be found under the Archive tab as pdf's. We will begin posting some studies, as pdf's and as ebooks in the coming months.

There is audio from Grace Assembly Church services.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

OUR LORD’S PERSONAL CURE

FOR TROUBLED HEARTS





“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” John 14:1-3. Jesus has provided for our deliverance and freedom from the anxiety, perplexity, distress, sorrow, and agitation that would overwhelm our hearts. Beloved, let us appreciate and appropriate all that He is, and wants to be to our life.

HIS PERSUASION: “BELIEVE IN ME.” He thus calls on us to trust in, rely on, and adhere to Him as a clinging vine. With confidence in Him let us rest in these facts, what He has promised, He is able to perform – Rom. 4:21. That is, He will (complete) perform that good work which He has begun in us – Phil. 1:6. Distress cannot easily overcome us when we are fully persuaded that He is making all things work together for our good – Rom. 8:28. How gently and firmly He would persuade us that nothing can separate us from His love – Rom. 8:38. He longs to settle all of our hearts with the fact that He is able to keep that which we have committed unto Him against that day – II Tim. 1:12.

HIS PEACE: “PEACE I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” – John 14:27. His peace is His fruit, a product of Him reproduced in us by the power of the Holy Spirit. We are encouraged to pray on the basis of the Word that divine peace will keep (protect, guard as with a garrison) our hearts and minds -Phil. 4:6,7. The unsettling events of our world in the day could certainly agitate our hearts. There seem to be many perplexing problems in every aspect of today’s living. Turmoil in the ecology, economy, and the political world cause much perplexity.

Luke prophesied of wars, earthquakes, famines, and pestilences. Oh yes, we hear of more and more bloodshed, lack of food, and epidemics uncontrollable. The shaking of former foundations is causing many hearts to fail. Satanic winds are striving to further trouble the waters, the sea and waves are roaring. Yet, we with eyes and hearts looking up, behold Jesus in control, “walking upon the waters,” and saying to uneasy hearts, “Peace be still.” He brings waters of quietness even in the midst of the storm.

HIS POWER: “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me” – II Cor. 12:9. For though He was crucified through weakness, yet He liveth by the power of God. We are comforted by the fact that the power that propelled Jesus as a man has been sent back in the person of the Holy Spirit. Our hearts are not only comforted by that power being put to our disposal, but also, being divinely guided in the perfect will of God soothes us in puzzling times. How blessed to know, we “can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth us.”

HIS PREPARATION: “I go to prepare a place for you.” Though the Father has many mansions in his house, Jesus seems to have a special place in mind for His beloved. Our hearts are comforted to consider how much He cares for us. How can we possibly know what great expense and expanse was involved in such preparation. Just to think of Him leaving such height of glory, and stooping to the depths of human depravity should assure our innermost being in the face of any trouble. He who knew no sin, was made sin for us – II Cor. 5:21. Does it not give us great peace to ponder the fact that He who first descended even into the lower parts of the earth, hath also ascended up on high, to appear in the presence of God for us? Oh, what marvelous preparation! I am comforted just to think that His preparation will not be in vain. I expect to be there, and enjoy my place at His place!

HIS PROMISE: “I WILL COME AGAIN.” These are some of Jesus’ most comforting words. How they soothe the weary heart. The things our adversary would cause us to fret over today, however threatening they may appear, however vexing or perplexing, large or small, what are they in view of the fulfillment of His promise to return? Since He has so faithfully fulfilled, in great measure, the things foretold in the Word, our hears joyfully expect to realize this. We also are admonished to comfort one another with His promise – I Thess. 4:18.

HIS PRESENCE: “WHERE I AM, THERE YE MAY BE ALSO.” This was Jesus’ deep desire before the foundation of the world, to bring His redeemed, glorified into His personal presence. His coming again is for the express purpose of receiving us “unto Himself.” “For the Lord Himself shall descend.” He prayed before going to the cross, “Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovest me before the foundation of the world” – John. 17:24. Just to be with Him, to be glorified in His presence will make Heaven, Heaven. When Christ, who is our life shall appear, we also shall appear with Him in glory – Col. 3:4. Our hearts thrill with the prospects of not only being in His presence, changed into His likeness, and seeing Him as He is, but also realizing our appointment of living forever together with Him – I Thess. 5:10. We are admonished also to comfort our- selves together with this thought – I Thess. 5:11.

Jack Davis


What does the Bible say?



What is the Scriptural attitude for Christians politically?

We are admonished in I Tim. 2:1-6 to pray for all men, even kings and all in authority, that we may lead a peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior. Who will have all men to be saved and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For Christ Jesus gave Himself a ransom for all men.

There is much confusion in all the world and rulers need the prayers of God’s people. God can overrule the purposes of wicked men who have no fear of God. The Bible tells of rulers who were moved to do God’s will, even though they really did not know God. He puts it into their hearts to fulfill His will and purposes. Read Daniel 4;17, 35.

God has revealed His purpose to destroy the present order of things -II Pet 3:7. What it written shall come to pass. Let us walk in the steps of our father Abraham’s faith; when God told him He purposed to destroy Sodom, Abraham made intercession. We are to pray that God will use even the rulers to bring about His purposes. Read Heb. 11:10,13,16.
“All flesh is grass” – Isa. 40:6; I Pet.1:24.

E. J. Davis


THE LAST DAYS



Anita Clark – Pastor, Carbondale, KS


“These things have I spoken to you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

The endtime is here! Signs all around point to the soon return of Christ for His Bride. II Peter 1:12-13 speaks of how Peter wanted to “... put you in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth. Yes, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle [human body], to stir you up by putting you in remembrance.” This we will do until the Lord comes. May these words stir our hearts from spiritual apathy, causing us to use all diligence in watching and waiting for Christ to come at any moment.

ANTI-DISCRIMINATION LAWS – Jesus warned His disciples that “in the world they would have tribulation.” This also applies to the believers of this endtime. Persecution is increasing more and more. Recently, the state of Iowa Civil Rights Commission passed a law which threatens churches through the “Public Accommodation” clause of their anti-discrimination law. The Claremont Institute’s Center for Constitutional Law Jurisprudence, whose director is John C. Eastman recently said, “The Civil Rights commission’s interpretation is indicative of the direction in which the gay rights movement is headed.” He expresses that, “This is going to be a dramatic effort to force compliance at great risk to religious liberty, freedom of speech, freedom of association, religious liberty in the public square, but also, ultimately, religious liberty in the pulpit itself. The idea of public accommodation has been expanded to mean that there will be prohibitions on sermons, theological expositions, educational speeches, newsletters or church worship bulletin text, or other statements from the church and its leaders.” In other words no free speech to bring what the Word of God says if it speaks against homo-sexuality. The “Public accommodation clause” meaning “freedom of access,” particularly means that churches would have to have rules that anyone can use any bathroom, and that no exclusions would be made against openly gay couples in many operations of the church.

Several news items have come to our attention which shows how greatly Satan is fighting against true Christianity in the U.S.A. and other parts of the world.

RUSSIA JUST BANNED ALL TYPES OF EVANGELISM OUTSIDE OF A CHURCH OR RELIGIOUS SITE – This was to become effective July 20, 2016. They have declared they will not allow individuals to witness on the internet, including e-mail, or on the streets or home meetings [private residences]. Church meetings will only be tolerated in churches recognized by the state. For sometime individual believers have warned that the openness of religious expression in Russia would one day be curtailed, and now we are seeing it happen. This proposed legislation seems to target religious groups outside of the Russian Orthodox Church

FIFTY-THREE COUNTRIES NOW HAVE LAWS TO RESTRAIN THE CHRISTIAN FAITH. – The Bible says the “Word of God is not bound.”

CHINA – More than 2,000 crosses have recently been forcibly removed. The government is also tearing down church buildings. Forty-nine churches have been torn down since the beginning of 2016. After one building was demolished, the believers met there anyway, defying the Communist Chinese government. Not long ago we rejoiced to hear that there was a revival in China and many were being born again. Now we hear of this persecution. The Chinese government has created a new law to force churches to hand over any offerings or tithes to the state. This will not stop the cause of Christ. The more Christians are persecuted, the more they will multiply, just as they did in the early church.

TERRORISM ATTACKS – Terror attacks are increasing all over the world. Statistics show that in 2015, fifty countries other than the U.S.A. had these attacks, where 11,774 people were killed and 14,303 were injured. In these same countries from January, 2016 till July, 2016 there have been 39 attacks with 615 persons killed and 740 injured. Since September 2011, when America was attacked at the World Trade Center, there have been 2,990 persons killed in U.S.A. in these attacks. Just recently, there are more attacks from Muslim extremists in France and Germany. This world is on the verge of the seven years of tribulation. Only Jesus can change the circumstances of a wicked, sinful world. Praise the Lord that sinners are still receiving the Lord, even Islamists. God is so gracious and loves the whole world, and sees a
hungry heart for the things of the true and living God.

 Romans 8:18, 22, 23- says, “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption [the son placing] to wit the redemption of our body.” We are “groaning” for the deliverance from this earthly sinful realm. We are desiring everyday to see His lovely face. This world is definitely not our home.

Hebrews 10:35-37 tells us, “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which has great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience, that after you have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry [delay].” Surely, He will come at anytime. The signs in this world are growing in number constantly. We feel more and more that we are not of this evil world. Let us look up and know that soon He will split the clouds with a shout and the trump of God and those who are looking for Him will be caught away. Let us be ready!

God Is Not

Who You Think He Is


“To whom then will you liken God? or what likeness will you compare to him?” Isaiah 40:18
“To whom then will you liken me, or shall I be equal? said the Holy One.”  Isaiah 40:25
“To whom will you liken me, and make me equal, and compare me, that we may be like?”  Isaiah 46:5
“For who in the heaven can be compared to the LORD? who among the sons of the mighty can be likened to the LORD?”  Psalms 89:6

I have been thinking a lot lately about who God is, and who people think God is. There is a lot written about God and many people claim to know something about God. The title of this article was in something written by a friend of mine. It reminded me that we do not make God what He is by what we think.

It is the Person of God which is of utmost importance, not the ideas about Him. When ideas about God are made of utmost importance, then man becomes the ultimate arbiter of the truth of those ideas and of their applicability to life. When that happens, truth is left sitting on the shifting sands of man’s philosophy because new ideas from those philosophies are always being put forth and with varying degrees of impact on the sum of human thought. And eventually, in the shuffle, the concept of God gets lost at least in terms of its importance to man.

Most people are looking for a god who thinks like they think, who likes what they like, who favors what they favor, and blesses what they bless. And a lot of people find a Jesus who does just that; all they have to do is ignore anything He said, or did, which goes contrary to what they wish He’d done or said.

God has always desired to reveal Himself to mankind. He gave us the scriptures, and He gives us His Holy Spirit for the express purpose of revealing Himself to us. This does not mean that we can ever comprehend the entirety of God, but we can know who He is within the limits of what He has revealed.

We cannot know God on our own terms. We cannot define God solely based on our human knowledge and intellect. We will only truly know Him when we believe by faith what is written in His Word. God is who He says He is, and it does not matter if that transcends our pitiful human understanding.

In Hebrews, we find that “He that comes to God must believe that He is.” We cannot truly enjoy  a relationship with God unless we are willing to accept Him as He is. We must believe He is who He says He is. We must come to Him on His terms. There is no room for trying to fit God into our box.

We will only be happy when we give up our idea of God and let Him reveal Himself to us daily in His Word.

Gordon Crook

Hold Fast



“Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.”  Rev. 3:11

This warning is given by the Lord Jesus Christ to Philadelphia saints in which He finds no fault, overcomers of the hightest caliber. So far they are running successfully, qualifying to win a crown. He admonishes, His appearance is near, Hold fast which thou hast.

The overcomers of Philadelphia along with the overcomers of Smyrna will make up the Bride of Christ. For they are unswearing in their love for Christ and steadfastly watching for His coming. We by faith identify with this group. So may we take this warning to heart.

To Smyrna He says, “Be faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life.” They speak of overcoming saints that go by way of the grave. They die, but will come up first in the resurrection. “Resurrected out from among the believing dead” – Phil. 3:11. Faithfulness is what wins the crown, holding fast to the end, faithful unto death – Rev. 2:10. Fellowshipping His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death – Phil 3:10. We are assured “If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him – II Tim. 2:12.

Philadelphia saints speak of those which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord – I Thess. 4:15. The Lord encourages them on, “I have set before thee an open door,” the door to heaven, translation’s door” – Rev. 3:8. A wonderful reward is theirs if they “Hold fast.” “Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth” – Rev. 3:10. They will not experience any of the days of the tribulation period. For they will go up before it starts.

V. 12, “Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of My God.” In Old Testament times, they would set a pillar as an important memorial. In the New Testament, certain faithful saints were considered pillars of the faith. The Greek word for pillar used here, simply means, ‘support, akin to the base.’ I like that. A pillar usually stands alone, a solid massive support in a conspicuous place. These appear as a pillar in the temple of God. The whole body of believers are growing into a holy temple in the Lord (Eph. 2:19-21), So their place is prominent among them. We read, “and he shall go no more out.” Those who win that place will have it forever.

“And I will write upon him the name of My God,” they belong to Him, His possession. “And the name of the city of My God, which is new Jerusalem (the Lamb’s wife) which cometh down out of heaven from My God.” Rev. 21:2 tells us, the new Jerusalem, the holy city, that John saw in vision, coming down from God out of heaven, was “prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (Her adornment will be living stones – I Pet. 2:5.)

“And I will write upon him my new name.” Christ gives His wife His new name.” He will have a new name, for He has never been a Bridegroom before. The Lamb’s wife (Rev. 19:7) will bear the imprint, the likeness of her husband. Some saints shall share these highest honors with the blessed Son of God. “He shall “be admired in all them that believe, in that day” – II Thess. 1:10.

A crown is certain to these wonderful overcomers, if they continue in the same way they have been going. For the Ephesus saints who started so good, being known for their good works, did not continue to hold fast. They left their first or chief love for Christ as their Bridegroom (Rev. 2:1-4). They will miss God’s best except they repent.

Apostle Paul espoused (engaged) us to be married to Christ that He may be able to present us as a chaste virgin to Christ. But he feared lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, that  our minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ (II Cor. 11:1-3). There is a danger of loosing that place and crown. Satan would “deceive the very elect” if possible – Mt. 24:24. Some believe because they possess the knowledge that Christ will have a bride, that they are winners. Knowledge is not enough to qualify us. If things of this life has first place with us, Satan has tricked us. Christ must have first place with His bride.

We live in such a time that we may have hope of translation, entering that open door of heaven. Apostle Paul was greatly concerned for the saints (I Thess. 3:5). He gives the warning that saints could be lulled to sleep spiritually, causing a state of indifference ( I Thess. 5:5-6). It would be sad indeed, since we have had the privilege of the revelation of God’s Word and then be deceived by Satan. We don’t want any part of the sorrows coming upon this world. We want to be in the throne room of heaven beholding the enthronement of Christ – Rev. 4:2-6.

 There is nothing worth more than winning Christ – Phil. 3:8. Paul says, “Continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of…” – II Tim. 3:13-14.  Don’t let Satan sidetrack us. He can’t take away our salvation, but he can rob us of God’s best. We want Christ as Bridegroom. “Yet a little while” and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry’ – Heb. 10:35-37. “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) – Heb 10:23. Christ’s last word to us, “Surely I come quickly” – Rev. 22:20.  
E. J. Davis

RUTH



Pastor Debra Isenbletter

Springfield, Missouri



Ruth 3:14 – “And she lay at his feet until the morning: and she rose up before one could know another. And he said, Let it not be known that a woman came into the floor.”

Where did Ruth stay the rest of the night? She spent it at the feet of Boaz! To “lay” means to “take rest,” “sleep,” “stay,” “lodge.”  It is a precious place and can be a permanent place, it is a place we choose to come to and can choose to remain. This is the BEST place – the SWEETEST place – the ONLY place. The feet of Boaz are a wonderful picture of the feet of Jesus, who is our Boaz. We have wonderful examples of women who chose this place. This is the PLACE of Thanksgiving (Luke 7:38) – The woman at Simon’s house is a picture of this. This is the PLACE of Revelation (Luke 10:39) – Mary hearing His Word at His feet is a picture of this. This is the PLACE of Worship (Matt 26:26; Mk 14:3; John 12:3) – Mary anointing Jesus and filling the house with the fragrance is a picture of this. All of these examples are seen in Ruth as she rests at the feet of Boaz.

After all her time spent in preparation for this moment, after all the hours of anticipation, Ruth has finally found her place of rest as she lies down at his feet, it is a place that she has been invited to enjoy. Oh what a glorious invitation! It is a rest from her labors and from ours, for Jesus says: “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matt 11:28). It is a rest as she patiently waits. This is what we do by faith, we “Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him.” (Ps 37:7). It is a rest for the soul, a place we return to again and again, a place where we embrace the blessings. “Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee.” (Ps 116:7). It is a rest from sorrow, any sorrow, all sorrow, every sorrow, personal sorrow. “And it shall come to pass … the Lord shall give thee rest from thy sorrow.” (Isa 14:3). It is a rest in hope, this is hope of deliverance. Jesus is our great example as we see in these prophetic words: “my flesh also shall rest in hope…” (Ps 16:9).

She will rest in his presence, in a place of submission and in anticipation! We don’t know any details of what happened during this time. Did she rest and go to sleep? Did she rest in quiet conversation with Boaz? However she rested, it was a time of blessing and refreshing! Notice that this is the fourth time the “feet” of Boaz are seen in this chapter. First in the words of Naomi to Ruth (3:4); then in Ruth’s obedience to those words (3:7); then Boaz’s awareness of Ruth (3:8) and finally in the choice that both Boaz and Ruth make (3:14). Naomi had sought “rest” for Ruth and she found it at the feet of Boaz! But she had to be willing to come to this place and stay. This is the place we come to, the feet of our Boaz, of Jesus and this is the place we can and choose to stay and when we do, what rest we find!

How long did Ruth rest? She rested “until the morning.” The word “morning” means “break of day.” This was early morning, just as the sun began to rise. The night was over, the day was beginning, and it was a day of hope! It is a picture of the trials that have passed. David, who knew about trials and tears, wrote: “weeping may endure for the night, but joy cometh in the morning.” (Ps 30:5) It is in the night that we see God’s faithfulness and in the morning that we see His loving kindness (Ps 92:2), what a beautiful promise is given to us and one that Ruth experienced in the fullest! When it was morning Ruth “rose up,” this means “to stand up” (which is what she did) and also means “to establish” (which is what God did). After a night at Boaz’s feet, she was established and strengthened and able to “stand” and “withstand” (Eph 6:13). I believe this is a wonderful picture of the “heart being established by grace” (Heb 13:9).

How early was this? It was still dark, “before one could know another.” The word “know” comes from “to scrutinize [with recognition implied].” It means “to observe, pay attention to, and notice,” it means to “recognize.” This doesn’t refer to Boaz knowing Ruth in a physical way, this refers to others knowing she was there, to others recognizing Ruth. Other translations read: “before one person could recognize another” (NRSV). “then, before [it was light enough that] people could recognize one another” (CJB).

What did Boaz give as a reason for leaving so early? Boaz says: “let it not be known that a woman came into the floor.” If anyone was awake, she would not be recognized or compromised. Boaz gives this as a reason, as an explanation for leaving so early. It is to protect Ruth. This is an indirect form of speech, Boaz didn’t say “that you came,” he said “that a woman came.” It is as if this is a parenthesis or note added by Boaz. I don’t know why it is phrased like this but I believe Boaz is speaking to Ruth and not to others. This is why she “rose up” so early. He was not ashamed of her being there; he was protecting her reputation and his. Only Boaz would know she had been there, others wouldn’t understand. Boaz doesn’t want there to be anything that would cast a shadow over the legal proceedings that he would start that day. He doesn’t want any misunderstandings about Ruth’s character, which is already known as “virtuous.” He takes steps to protect her. Paul writes: “Let not then your good be evil spoken of” (Rom 14:16) and to “abstain from all appearance of evil” (1 Thess 5:22). So I believe Ruth leaves the presence before anyone realizes she has been there. She leaves as quietly and silently as she had come. What a wonderful picture of the times we quietly slip in and out of the presence of the Lord, of that personal time, that intimate time that others don’t know about because they wouldn’t understand. We leave refreshed, we leave blessed, we leave rejoicing! I believe this is how Ruth left the presence of Boaz!
To be continued