judgment

Honor in the Open

Men see your actions but the Lord sees your heart. Indeed, all things are laid open and bare before Him.

It’s what you do in secret that matters to the Lord, and what you do in secret is what you do with your heart. When the Lord spoke of doing good in secret, to not let you left hand know what your right hand is doing, He spoke of the intentions and attitudes of your heart.

Do not do things for the praise of men, for then that will be your reward; instead, honor the Lord with your heart and He will honor you openly before men, as He sees fit. The man who honors himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself before the Lord will be honored by the Lord, and no man can remove this honor that the Lord has given. Indeed, the Lord’s praise is a treasure in heaven – the place where your heart is meant to make its home. Set your hearts on things above, not on earthly things.

Be holy, as He is holy. A holy heart begins with a desire to sincerely honor the Lord. Offer your body as a living sacrifice, for this is your spiritual act of worship. And the Father desires those true worshipers, who worship in spirit and truth.

On the last day, the Lord, who is the Judge of the living and the dead, will judge the secrets of men’s hearts. Each will receive from Him their recompense for their deeds done in the body. Some will receive honor and others dishonor. Allow the Lord to judge your heart today so that you may be fit to stand before Him on the last day. For if you judge yourself, you will not be judged.

Scriptures
Phil 2:3-13
John 7:17-18
1 Thes 2:4

(Exhortation received by inspiration of the Spirit – May 11, 2013)

When He Returns

There hasn’t been much preaching or teaching in recent years about Jesus’ return; it seems to have faded into the distance over the last few decades. But to the early disciples, it was a major facet of the gospel that was preached.

When the gospels and epistles were written, the church seemed to believe that Jesus would return at any moment. And even then, there were a couple references to the thought that His return might not happen in their lifetime. And since then, whenever there has been a massive move of the Spirit amongst His people, many have had a similar awareness that He is coming soon. And the truth of it is that He is returning soon.

As people who live within the boundary of time, “soon” has a different meaning than when the Eternal One says “soon”. And yet, from a dispensational perspective, His return is the next major event in the plan of God in the earth, and so, in that regard, His soon return is a positional state of being and always accurate.

But perhaps most importantly, its what His soon return means to us here and now that matters most.

The parables of the ten virgins and the steward of his Master’s household servants illustrate to us that we need to be ready for when He returns. Furthermore, the epistles speak much about not slumbering, but remaining awake and watchful, awaiting His return.

When Jesus returns, He is coming for His bride, and Eph 5 talks about the church being cleansed by the washing of the water of the Word so that He may present her to Himself a glorious church, without spot or wrinkle or any such blemish.

In 1 John it speaks of Jesus return, stating that when He appears, we shall be like Him, and it is because of this hope that we purify ourselves. And there are numerous references in the epistles of being found blameless, spotless, complete and unreproachable when He is revealed from Heaven.

When you know you will stand before Him and give account for your life, whether He returns now or at the end of your earthly life makes very little difference, except that you have a few years down here to grow in holiness and fruitfulness, fulfilling His will for your life. Holiness is being ready.