Sunday, March 13, 2016


”I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels” – Isa. 61:10.

This scripture brought to my mind some of the fundamentals in attitude and foundational activity essential in preparation for that glorious royal wedding day. We realize that Isaiah’s prophecy was written to and about Israel, yet we appreciate the thoughts quickened to our hearts from the context of this verse. We read in verse nine of the “seed which the Lord hath blessed,” and in verse eleven, “For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden casuseth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all nations.” Praise God! we know from Scripture there is only one seed (a new creation in Christ Jesus) which the Lord hath blessed, and from which He causes righteousness and praise to spring forth. Therefore, this great rejoicing springing forth out of a joy filled soul is firmly established on this everlasting foundation: “He hath clothed me; He hath covered me.”

Isaiah compares this clothing and covering to “a bridegroom’s ornaments” (victor’s laurels) and “a bride’s adornment.” We delight in reading from God’s Word the description of the bridegroom and the bride being specifically dressed for that special occasion. Read Psalm 45 and consider the King’s (vs. 1-8) and Queen’s (vs. 10-17) adornment there. He must reign as King of kings and Lord of lords, and they that suffer with Him shall also reign with Him. Presently, all the providential experiences that God’s people are passing through in faith, are sent as preparation for sharing His glorious throne eternally! Jesus finished His course, fought His fight, and was victorious; yet He seems to await His ultimate and lasting triumph. He arises from the wedding and goes out to war when His bride is glorified with Him.

In the meanwhile this is our time for pressing, stressing, and dressing. Isaiah is expressing here what he is doing and will do because of what God has done, is doing, and will do in performance of His promises. Thus the attitude of appreciation produces the activity of praise. Some one may say, “Well, I’m just not emotional; I will worship God in my own way. I am more reserved.” Jesus came and was anointed to give all that will believe beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. Therefore, let not our souls always be mournful, but rather, like Isaiah, full of joy and overflowing. Then he tells why: for God this change hath made. If we can realize how God sees us and that He is the one that really counts, we then can better appreciate this clothing and covering. “For the Word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight; but all things are naked and open unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do” – Heb. 4:12-13.

Two questions asked and answered in scripture in the light of spiritual significance are important. Consider these: “Wherewithal shall we be clothed?” and “Who shall be able to stand?”

Rev. 6:15-17, “And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?”

Our Lord has penetrating eyes of the Spirit; he knows where we are and all about us. The rocks and mountains won’t be able to hide mankind from His face on that day. We read in Rom. 14:10 and II Cor. 5:10 that we all must appear before the judgment seat of Christ. When the Lord comes, He will “bring to light the hidden things of darkness and make manifest the counsels of the hearts” – I Cor. 4:5. Therefore, we greatly rejoice in the righteous Judge who has provided the covering we greatly need. He counsels Christendom in that Laodicean condition to make faith’s purchase of “white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear” – Rev. 3:17-18. Let us all who believe be joyful and ever greatly rejoice, that by God’s marvelous grace we are CLAIMED, COVERED, CLEANSED, and CLOTHED.

CLAIMED: The apostle Paul says we were sold under sin, but by the blood of Jesus Christ we were bought out of sin’s slave market. Eph. 1:6-7 & Col. 1:13-14: read and rejoice.

COVERED: Does it not rejoice our souls to think personally of what He has done about our sin and with the robe of His righteousness? When I turned to Him in faith, my sin to Jesus was imputed, and His righteousness to me was not only imputed, but also imparted. Oh yes, His righteousness by faith became mine - II Cor. 5:21. “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile” – Psa. 32:1,2. Read Rom. 4:3-7 & Prov. 28:13,14. If we try to cover our sins, God will uncover them in judgment. If we uncover them before God, He will cover them in grace. It is strange how we attempt with our bodily actions to cover our soul and spirit. But it doesn’t really work, especially before the One that really counts. In order for mankind to really appreciate and appropriate the covering that God provides, He at times has to uncover us to ourselves, and show us what He sees. There are also times, if necessary, that He may allow our spiritual nakedness to become public knowledge for our good.

Isaiah 64:6, says we are all unclean and our righteousnesses are as filthy rags and fade as a leaf and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. God had to teach this truth to Adam and Eve and will also to Israel nationally, as he does to us. All that any man can produce is totally inadequate and unsatisfactory before our Holy God. The apostle Paul said in Romans 10:1-4 that Israel tried to establish their own righteousness and did not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth.

We all must be made to realize that our holy, glorious wardrobe will be all and only of His design, entirely His product. We read in I Peter 4:8 that charity “shall cover a multitude of sins.” His love was behind what He has done about our sin. That same love is produced in us, and is manifest by us as we walk in love. James 5:20, “…he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way, shall hade a multitude of sins.”

CLEANSED: The Lord has to show up our filth, or we would never look to Him for a cleansing. Zechariah saw Joshua in vision stand before the angel of the Lord in filthy garments, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. He answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe with a change of raiment. Let them set a fair mitre (priestly crown) upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments – Zech. 3:1-5.

What an exchange! Doesn’t it make you rejoice to consider the cleansing, transforming provisions the Lord has made for us? Ah, yes, is making in us, if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness – I Jn. 1:7-9. It gives us joy to consider how Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it; that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that he might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing, but that it should be holy and without blemish” – Eph. 5:25-27.

Clothed: “He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation.” What a precious preview was given in the garden of Eden as to what God was going to do about the nakedness of fallen humanity. Before the fall both the man and his wife were naked and were not ashamed, Gen. 2:25. After the fall of disobedience, their eyes were opened, and they knew they were naked. They sewed fig leaves together and made aprons, but when they heard the voice of the Lord God, they hid from the presence of the Lord God among the trees. The Lord God called unto Adam and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice and was afraid, because I was naked and I hid myself – Gen. 3:7-10. Their efforts to hide behind their manufactured aprons or among the trees were completely insufficient before God. There was nothing found there to rejoice in, boast about, or bring glory to God. Then we read what God has freely done for mankind since the fall. Gen. 3:21, “Unto Adam also and to His wife did the Lord God made coats of skins, and clothed them.”

Jesus took upon Himself my blame, humility and shame; not only that He might cover me with His righteousness, but also that He might robe me in His royalty. This is salvation unto the uttermost! Can we trust God for all the covering and clothing we will ever need: body, soul and spirit? (Do we, are we?)

“Why take ye thought (or anxious) for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin…even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these…if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?…take no though (or be anxious), saying what shall we eat: or…drink? Or, wherewithal shall we be clothed?…for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” -Mt. 6:28-33.

How wonderful that we can trust God for our eternal adornment as well as the temporal. It certainly is a sign of the times that so many are more occupied with the added things than the first things. The Lord does not teach us to neglect personal business, but He would comfort and deliver from anxieties that would occupy our attention predominately with the temporal rather than the eternal. II Cor. 5:1-4, “…if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon our house which is from heaven: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life.”

OH WHAT A CHANGE IS COMING. Then while covered with the robe of His righteousness and clothed with the garments of His salvation, our soul will be most joyful, and we shall ever greatly rejoice.

J. D.

What does the Bible say?

about the two natures present in the believer?

We read in I Corinthians 15:45-48 of two men called Adam. The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam (Christ) a quickening spirit. Just as the first Adam had children by natural birth, the last Adam had children by the new birth. John 3:17, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. The way of the new birth is simply believing the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Read I Cor. 15:22.

What does the individual experience when he is born again? There are two natures or spirits in him that battle each other. Romans 7:19 tells of that battle – “For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.” There is the presence of two “I’s” battling, which causes the individual to cry out in desperation. “For I know that  in me (that is, in my flesh.) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” Rom. 7:18,24.

Every believer in Jesus Christ experiences this inconsistency (Gal. 5:17). It baffles many believers. Even the Apostle Paul had this battle, for this is his testimony in Romans 7. Only Jesus had no battle with evil, for he had no sin nature. The rest of us have two creations – Adam’s spirit and Christ’s spirit. What can we do? What is our hope? We can find victory just as Paul did – through Christ.

Apostle Paul expounds on it practically in Romans chapter 8. Walk in the Spirit, get anointed with the Holy Spirit and feed the new man on the Word of God. John 6:63 – Read the Bible, it is food for the new life, and heed what the Holy Spirit speaks to you concerning it. Also fellowship with others who believe God’s Word strengthens us. The victory comes by the Holy Spirit (Rom. 8:4).

The victory can be ours, it is in our grasp, because God is greater than the world. Christ is greater than the old Adamic nature in us, and the Holy Spirit having been received within our new heart, is greater than Satan (the tempter). God blesses the new man within us as we believe and go on to full growth in Christ.

Read these scripture of the powerless old creation – I Cor. 2:14; 15:50 and Gal. 6:8. Then read of the new life we have in Christ – Jn. 1:12-13; 3:5-6; I Jn. 5:1. The old and New Creation side by side in the believer – II Cor. 4:7; Eph. 4:22-24. A conflict is experienced – Mt. 26:41; Rom. 7:15,17; Gal. 4:29. But we can have the victory through Christ – Jn. 6:63; Rom. 8:10; II Cor. 5:17; Gal. 5:16. Praise the Lord!
E. J. D.

The Rule Of Peace

There is so much turmoil in the world today. Everywhere you look, things are in turmoil. This turmoil starts in the heart of people. It then spills over into society and eventually into wars and conflicts among nations.

I do not intend to address conflict among nations in this article, but I do want to consider the turmoil and anxiety that finds its way into the heart of people. In particular, God’s people. Turmoil in men’s heart is one of the effects of sin, and as such has no place in the hearts of God’s people.

In God’s Word, we find so much spoken about peace. There are two main thoughts about peace. We find peace with God and we find the peace of God. It is very clear that the peace of God can only be experienced by those that have experienced first the peace with God. Peace with God was made possible by the death of Jesus on the cross. “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:” Romans 5:1.

The peace of God is provided for everyone that has accepted Jesus and come to peace with God. It is a change that God makes in our heart that replaces the turmoil and anxiety with rest and peace.

The word “peace” means “quietness” or “rest.” As we truly learn to trust our Lord, and come to realize that He is in control of every circumstance in our lives, we can allow His peace to take over our lives. We will find a quietness in our heart. Not lack of noise, but lack of turmoil.

Jesus promised to leave His peace with us when He went away. John 14:27. We no longer need to allow the trouble and turmoil of the world to affect our life, even in the midst of a troubled world. John 16:33

How do we get this peace in our lives? Paul gives us some important keys. “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7. “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.” Colossians 3:15

When we allow God to work His peace in our heart, then we will also be able to be at peace with others. Conflict between people is so much a result of lack of peace in their heart. Paul encourages us to let peace “rule” in our hearts. We get the idea of having His peace completely overtake our heart and have control.

Notice the “let” in Colossians. Peace (quietness, rest) is already provided by our Lord, we must allow Him to work it in our heart. Both of these passages mention thankfulness. It seems that an attitude of gratitude both precedes and follows the working of peace in our lives.

Gordon Crook


Debra Isenbletter

Ruth 3:8 – “And it came to pass at midnight, that the man was afraid, and turned himself: and, behold, a woman lay at his feet.”

In this verse we see Boaz waking up, and his reaction. The time was “midnight” and this means “middle of the night,” i.e. “mid-night;” it is translated “half of the night” or “the division of the night.” Midnight was the halfway mark between one day and the next. Midnight speaks of a time of change, a turning point. A new day was starting for Ruth; her life would be changed from this day on!

In the parable of the ten virgins each had their lamps and each went forth to meet the bridegroom, some were wise and some were foolish, some were prepared and some unprepared, all slept. But at a certain hour something happened and everything changed. It was at midnight, “And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.” (Matt 25:6). Midnight was a turning point, it proved and revealed the hearts of those waiting and showed those that were ready and prepared. The bridegroom had come unexpectedly! Ruth was ready and prepared; she was waiting for Boaz to notice her!

Jesus spoke of the unexpectedness of the master’s return (Mk 13:32) and the master’s words to his servants were an admonition to “watch” for the return of their master. His words were “watch and pray for ye know not when the time is.” Brother Carson Richards said while teaching the Four Gospels that we “watch through the Spirit in conjunction with the word.” Jesus went on to say that these servants would not know when the master of the house would return. He listed four times that the master could return and told them to watch. “Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even (1st watch), or at midnight (2nd watch), or at the cockcrowing (3rd watch), or in the morning (4th watch).” (Mk 13:35). These times are a picture of the four divisions of the night, the four watches and “midnight” is listed. It is the end of the 2nd watch and the beginning of the 3rd watch. The four watches are: (1st watch: 6pm-9pm; 2nd watch: 9pm-midnight; 3rd watch: midnight-3am; 4th watch: 3am-6am). Ruth, a picture of the Bride of Christ watched and waited for Boaz to notice her.

Midnight not only speaks of a time of change, a turning point and a time of watching for something unexpected, it also speaks of a time of trials and suffering. It was at “midnight” that the Lord smote the firstborn in Egypt (Ex 11:4; Ex 12:29). Paul was in prison and it was at “midnight” that he and Silas “sang praises unto God” (Acts 16:25). The Lord “giveth songs in the night” (Job 35:10), even at midnight! I believe there was a song in Ruth’s heart as she waited for Boaz! It was at “midnight” that the ship Paul was in as a prisoner “drew near to some country” (Acts 27:27) during that storm. Prior to that, the Lord had told Paul not to fear, that none would be lost, that they would be “cast upon a certain island.” And at midnight, the darkest hour, they saw land; they were shipwrecked but all lived. Midnight may be a time of trials and suffering but it is also a time for our faith to be put to the test. Sister Mary Bodie writes:

“We pray for a closer walk; we pray that we may know Him better; we pray that we may grow in grace. Instead of the answer coming in the way we expect, it comes by way of deeper trials. We are sent to the feet of Jesus, to cling to Him.”

What was Boaz’s reaction? He was startled! “the man was afraid. The word “afraid” means “anxiety” or “to tremble.” The Amplified, NIV and New American Standard translate this was “the man was startled.” He wasn’t expecting anyone to be at his feet! What Boaz did was to investigate, to see who was there. He “turned himself” or “he turned over” or another translation is “he bent forward (so as to feel what was beneath his feet).” I like what Warren Wiersbe wrote:

“‘Life is full of rude awakenings!’ a famous cartoon canine likes to say, and more than one biblical character would agree. Adam went to sleep and woke up to discover he'd been through surgery and was now a married man. Jacob woke up to discover he was married to the wrong woman! Boaz woke up at midnight to find a woman lying at his feet.”

Boaz woke up and “behold a woman lay at his feet.” In chapter 2 we see Ruth at his feet when she “fell on her face” (2:10) overcome with gratitude at the grace he had shown to her. Now she is again at his feet, waiting to lay claim to and to experience the fulfillment of that promise of his grace, that wonderful grace she had a taste of that so stirred her heart with love. In chapter 3 of Ruth the word “feet” is mentioned four times (3:4,7,8,14). It is a place of waiting, a place of reward, it is a place that Ruth took and it is from that place she would be exalted. What a wonderful picture of the Bride of Christ!
To be continued

Power source

Jack Davis

“Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.”
Eph 3:20-21

HE IS ABLE: We notice this verse begins with “now” and ends, “without end.” Its focus is upon the glory being now and forever “unto Him.” It is never unto us, but unto Him who is able – of the power. It is so important to our faith that we realize that all things are possible with our God. He can do and does whatever He wants to do.

DO WE KNOW, HE IS ABLE? A child brought to Jesus had been deaf and dumb by a foul spirit from the devil. The child had suffered for some time by the devil trying to destroy him, often casting him into the fire and the water. The father plead with Jesus. “If thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us.” Jesus said, “If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.” The father then cried out, and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help mine unbelief.” Jesus delivered the child and the devil’s work was again defeated, another proof that Jesus had come to destroy the works of the devil. Mk. 9:14-27. Sometimes in our unbelief we put limitations in our “ASKING AND THINKING.” Jesus has made faith the key in experiencing God’s power.

In Mt. 9:27-30, we read of two men following Jesus, saying have mercy on us. Jesus said, “Believe ye that I am able to do this?” They said unto him ‘YEA, LORD.’ Then touched he their eyes saying, According to you faith be it unto you. And their eyes were opened.” Jesus seemed to make their life a switch which must be turned on from the inside. He has placed his power at the disposal of our faith.

ARE YOU PLUGGED IN: God’s power plant is a mighty dynamo. The current flows to do exceeding abundantly above all. That current is to “work in us” as conduit clear and controlled. It is our privilege to be used as channels, vessels unto honour. He lives in us as unlikely power tools (weak, foolish, despised). I Cor. 1:26-29. With the Christ life treasure in these earthen vessels we are to always be aware that the excellency of the power is of God and not of us. II Cor. 4:7. We also need to be assured that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. Phil. 4:13. Thus we are plugged in to the power source, and turned on, for the exceeding greatness of his power is to us-ward who believe. Eph. 1:19.

ASK: The Word of God that teaches us of his power, also instructs us to ask, and how to ask in faith. He also teaches us by his wonderful promises as to what to ask for. He teaches us to ask with a motive for His glory, and of course our good. We wisely come unto Him for the supply of our need, from His great provision. It is important that we ask of Him being more focused on His ableness than occupied with our weakness.

THINK: It is so very important that we allow Him, his Word to influence our thinking. Trust Him to elevate our mind set, to perceive and apprehend His good pleasure. His desire is always for our best. This is not a matter of mind over matter, and yet as a man thinketh in his heart so is he. We are wise to allow Him to place His thoughts in our hearts Isa. 55:8-11.

As we listen to God’s Word with receptive hearts, faith arises in us to expect of him according to his promise instead of our condition. Some of us when we hear his promises, do not allow them to penetrate our consciousness enough to allow them to be applied to us personally. There are those that will think, Oh, that’s a wonderful verse, but that doesn’t apply to my need. Thank God for other’s who say, Oh yes, that promise is mine, I claim it by faith, the Lord gave it to me. Psalm 40:16-17.

Natural reasoning can get in the way of simply thinking according to God’s powerful Word. Most of us are inclined to expect more of what the doctor tells us than what God’s Word says. Even though we know they are making educated guesses. We seem to put more confidence in our symptoms than, “Thus saith the Lord.”

I visited a woman on her sick bed some years ago, after a short visit and prayer I read some wonderful comforting Scriptures. These words were given by our Father to encourage and strengthen faith. I felt led to ask her if those scripture said something to her? She answered, well, I have heard them before, my Dad was a preacher. They didn’t seem to mean much to her. Thank God His Word is still living and powerful to those who will believe.