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The Temporary vs. the Eternal

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’ve been posting about the discussion Jesus had with the crowd in John chapter 6.  Having told them that He understood their motives; Jesus goes on to explain further.

“Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.  On him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”
John 6:27

The Lord is about to tell them that He’s the Bread of Life and He has the Words of truth.  He goes on to explain that if they’ll come to Him in faith, they’ll never lack for life.  The point is that you can’t spend all your time and energy chasing the things of this world.  There’s a more important issue at stake here.

Too many believers spend their prayer time with the Lord running through their lists of needs and wants.  While there is a place for petitioning the Lord in prayer, that should not be the major part.  Prayer is where we get to know Christ in relationship.  It’s give and take.

Yes, it is talking, but it’s also listening.  If we’re going to be prepared for the last days, then we must get past this mentality that chases God around simply for what we think we can get from Him.

The crowd made their motives very plain to Jesus.  Even in their answer, they show Him that His assessment of their true character was correct.

“Sir,” they said, “from now on give us this bread.”
John 6:34

Their thoughts are, “You’ve got the bread from heaven.  Give us this bread.”  Again, they’re thinking in a material way.  If His earthly bread was good, the heavenly must be even better tasting!

It reminds me of the woman at the well.  Jesus said that He could give her living water so that she would never thirst again.  Her reply was, “Great, then I won’t have to come to this well every day to draw water.”

Why are we all so foolish?  Jesus longs to give us eternal, abundant life, yet we are content to simply ask Him for things.  I know that in His Word He’s promised to take care of our needs.  The problem is that we seem to major on the physical.

My true needs are so much deeper than that.  He wants to satisfy the longing of our souls, but this will require that we spend time in His presence.  We fail to enter the abundance that He has for us because we’d rather have the “quick fix” of more money or more stuff so that we can then get on with our plans.  The better solution would be for us to bow our knee to the Lord and take up His plan for our lives.

Question: Why do the temporary issues of life seem so important sometimes?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in Encouragement, Faith, Prayer

 

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The Word of God – Who, not What

BeamI want to talk about the very foundation of the Word of God.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  He was with God in the beginning.
John 1:1-2

Whenever you talk about the Word of God you must start with Christ.  Notice that in this verse the Word is a He.  God and His Word are one and the same.  When the Bible speaks about the Word of God, it’s talking about God’s revelation of Himself.

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1:14

Christ is the Word made flesh.  He was the Word throughout eternity past.  He will be the Word for all of the eternity that lies before us.  This is the foundation of all we know about the Word of God.

By looking at Christ we see the total embodiment of what the Word of God is and does in our lives.  It’s through His life and words that we can truly understand how the Word applies to us.

You would think that because of this truth, there would be no question as to what the Word of God is in our life and walk.  I wish that were the case.  The fact is that there’s much controversy surrounding exactly what the Word of God is.

Please read my posts carefully, and prayerfully.  It’s my hope to cut through some of the problems created by our present use of “Christianese” – the religious language we have grown used to in the church.

This language is not always in line with Scripture.  It’s my prayer that you will see a difference between how we describe certain truths and how the Bible describes them.  I also pray that when you see this difference, you’ll choose the Biblical definition.

It’s because of our use of this religious language that we get into many arguments.  One of these is over what the Word of God is.

There are some who insist that only the King James Version of the Bible is the Word of God.  There are others who say that any translation is the Word.  Who is right?

Actually, according to Scripture, the above argument is not even asking the right question!  Let’s allow Christ, the Living Word, to be the Judge in this situation.

Over the next few posts I hope to clarify some things that are causing tremendous problems in the Body of Christ.  I want to see God’s people get back to where we should be in our handling of the Word.

Question: How does Christ continue to reveal Himself as the Living Word of God?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2013 in Word of God

 

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Proverb – What do You Value?

Proverbs 10:2
Ill-gotten treasures are of no value, but righteousness delivers from death.

This sounds like an oxymoron.  A treasure that’s of no value.  How does that work?  I guess it all depends upon your perspective.

In the natural realm, any treasure is good and valuable, no matter how it’s gotten.  That’s the trouble with us humans, we can’t see the big picture.  We look at what will make us feel good right now.  That’s why so many people in our generation have clawed and fought their way up the corporate ladder, only to find out it was leaning against the wrong wall.

We get trapped in the love of money and excuse it away.

“I’m doing this for you, so you can be comfortable.”

“This extra job is only temporary.”

It is only after we have lost those people who are dear to us that we start to question if it was worth it.

Righteousness – a life lived with God’s priorities in view, delivers us from death.  No, not the grave, but from a living death.  Living your life in God’s will for you will keep your relationships from dying.  It will keep you from an unfulfilled life.  Then, in your later years, you can look back with no regrets.

After all, what is value?  We are eternal beings.  Only a miniscule part of our existence will be lived in this life.  As wonderful as money seems right now, it is only an illusion.

Don’t get me wrong, I need money to get by, the same as everyone else.  But money has no eternal value.  It is only good for life on this planet.  I need to be storing up eternal wealth.  That’s where righteousness comes in.  It will last throughout the ages to come.

As I said, it all comes down to perspective.  What is important to you?  Better yet, what is going to be important to you one million years from today?  Remember, there will come a day when things that you highly valued will suddenly become worthless.  And things that you didn’t care about will suddenly become of supreme importance.

Start planning now for your life in eternity.  It will reap the greatest profit you could ever hope to achieve.

 
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Posted by on May 1, 2012 in Daily Thoughts

 

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Mountains

Isaiah 54:10
Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you.

They seem so powerful, so enduring.  Their immense size and lofty construction give us the idea that they will last forever.  Yet a viewing of the pictures of the Mount St. Helens tragedy illustrates how even a mountain can crumble at any time.

We, as human beings, tend to be impressed very easily.  We are quick to use labels such as “always”, “never”, and “forever.”  We seem to apply these to the most inappropriate parts of life – governments, economies, relationships, and so many other man-made institutions.  The events of September eleventh proved the foolishness of that kind of thinking.

Don’t fall into the trap of assigning eternal value to temporary things.  In spite of all this, there is a stable place in the world.  Even though the seemingly unshakable can topple, God’s love, His covenant, and His compassion will never fail.  They are established, eternal, and unshakable.

Meditate on the Lord’s faithfulness today.  Give Him praise for His unchanging and unwavering love – that love which reaches down to us at our point of need.  Spend time in the presence of the Eternal One today.  Receive from Him what you need to be established in your way.

 
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Posted by on March 2, 2012 in Daily Thoughts

 

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