Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.
And he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb
For His Glory!
What Is Love?
We normally feature a section called "Bytes" written by Alan Gilman. When this commentary was written about coming to understand a simple definition of God’s love, the MEM felt it should be shared because there is little understanding about true love. In Scripture we find the command to "Love God and our neighbor". How do we put this into action? Primarily by bearing the fruit of the Spirit (Love is a fruit of God’s Spirit) and possibly by considering this commentary.
But the Lord your God would not listen to Balaam; instead the Lord your God turned the curse into a blessing for you, because the Lord your God loved you.(Deuteronomy 23:5; ESV)
I was almost hit by a car the other day. I was getting out of my vehicle, when a red sports car in the same lane I was parked was speeding right toward me trying to (illegally) pass a car in the outside lane. I pressed myself against the side of my vehicle as closely as I could as the sports car found a narrow opening between me and the car he was passing. I was in a bit of shock as I thought about what almost was. "Just a few more inches and he would have plowed right into me," played over and over again in my mind. Then I remembered the other "almosts" of my life: I almost died of the croup at 6 months, I almost died of dehydration at 11 years. Then there was the time a friend stopped to give me a ride. As I was putting something in their trunk, another car was slowly coming up behind with lots of time to stop, but for some reason I can't remember, I moved out of the way as the vehicle slammed into the rear end of the car I had been standing behind. I still shutter at the thought of my legs almost being sandwiched between those two cars. Almost.
Some of you reading or listening to this may respond differently to such happenings. You perhaps would think about how wonderful it is that these almosts didn't happen. I understand. I know I should be so grateful for all the things that haven't happened to me. I am grateful, but for some reason I tend to focus more on the horrible things that almost happened than the actual good outcomes.
I don't want to get into the psychology of why I am this way; rather, I want to look at how I should be thinking. The above Scripture portion refers to an almost that happened to Israel during their years in the wilderness. The King of Moab hired a sorcerer named Balaam to curse Israel in his desire to undermine them (see Number 22-24). It didn't work. Every time Balaam attempted to curse Israel, blessing came from his mouth. Why? God's love. Because the Master of the Universe loves Israel, he stopped the bad thing from happening. More than that, he caused good to happen instead.
I, like many others, have often wondered what love is. It seems to me what most people today mean by love is "desirous affection." The word "love" is most often used as a very intense form of "like" usually with the intent of wanting, having, or keeping the stated object, whether it be human or something else. The focus of love is usually not the one being loved, but the lover and his or her own desires.
But this is not the meaning of love as we find it in our portion. Love here is best described in one of the ways my wife tries to explain her love for me. As I mentioned my tendency with my almosts has been to focus on the negative things that theoretically could have happened instead of the positive actual outcomes. Similarly, I have also tended to interpret intentions of others towards me as negative. This has caused me to interpret motives, including of those closest to me, incorrectly. To counter this my wife has told me countless times, "I am for you." That's true love - the wanting and the doing good to and for another person. That's what God's love is. It is not some warm fuzzy feeling on God's part. Nor is it a way of saying he likes us a lot. To know God's love is to know that he is for us. He is out for our good and works things out for our good as he did for Israel regarding Balaam.
Now, of course, the circumstances of life are not always good. Babies’ die of the croup and people are killed or severely injured in car accidents. It can be a challenge to hold on to the assurance of God's love in the midst of real tragedy. But if you are like me, before we can ever look beyond hardships and trust in God's love when life is truly hard, we need to first come to the place where we stop thinking of all the things that might have happened and start accepting how much God really loves us through all the good he regularly does on our behalf.
Alan Gilman of TorahBytes Communications
To Him who loves us
Revelation 1:5 (NAS unless indicated)and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the first-born of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us, and released us from our sins by His blood, 6 and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father; to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Ephesians 2:4But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places, in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
1 John 4:10In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
YHVH is our helper
Isa 41:13"For I am the LORD your God, who upholds your right hand, Who says to you, 'Do not fear, I will help you.'
What do we need to do?
John 13:34"A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."
Zeph 2:3Seek the LORD, All you humble of the earth Who have carried out His ordinances; Seek righteousness, seek humility. Perhaps you will be hidden In the day of the LORD's anger.
Learn from Him
Matt 11:29"Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls.
Then we can say -
Phil 4:13I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
Romans 8:37But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.
And so be like Him
Col 3:12And so, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.
1Pet 3:8To sum up, let all be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit;
Eph 6:10Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might.
What about loving our enemies? See the section entitled "Love".
About Love - From the Proverbs
Proverbs 3:12For whom the LORD loves He reproves, Even as a father, the son in whom he delights.
Proverbs 13:24He who spares his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him diligently.
Proverbs 8:17"I love those who love me; And those who diligently seek me will find me.
Proverbs 19:8He who gets wisdom loves his own soul; He who keeps understanding will find good.
Proverbs 10:12Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.
Proverbs 15:17Better is a dish of vegetables where love is, Than a fattened ox and hatred with it.
Proverbs 17:17A friend loves at all times…
YHVH help us to use wisdom in loving others as You love us.
"The best way to cheer yourself up is to cheer somebody else up." Mark Twain
John 15:17"This I command you, that you love one another.
When we are for others, by wanting and doing, we are blessing ourselves in eternal matters.
Eternal One, in Your love for us You do what is best for us - we need to love others like You do for us.
In our pursuit of humility:
(Lessons from humility and happiness)
"We may know advanced believers, eminent teachers, and men of great spiritual experience who have not yet learned to embrace humility. We see this danger in Paul’s situation. The inevitability of exalting himself was close at hand. He didn’t yet know what it was to be nothing; to die, that Christ alone might live in him; to take pleasure in all that brought him low. It appears that this was the greatest lesson that he had to learn."
Andrew Murray (See 2 Corinthians 12:1-10)
Our Creator loves us so much He leads us through tests designed for our good
2Cor 12:7And because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh… to keep me from exalting myself!
We must constantly yield-that Yeshua may be manifested in us
2Cor 12:9And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
Father, grant us the faith to trust You totally when You are testing us; for You are molding us in Your likeness.
Understanding the precepts of prayer.
Praying is a conversation with the Most Holy Elohim. When we have died to self and committed our ways unto Him He directs us in paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake - that we be in His likeness. And part of that direction is to pray even for our enemies.
If we love Yeshua we will keep His commandments
Matt 5:44"But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you
When enemies face us, ask for YHVH’s handling of the situation:2 …rise up for my help. 3 …Say to my soul, "I am your salvation." 4 Let those be ashamed and dishonored who seek my life… 7 For without cause they hid their net for me; Without cause they dug a pit for my soul… 11 Malicious witnesses rise up; They ask me of things that I do not know. 12 They repay me evil for good, To the bereavement of my soul.
Despite their treatment still pray for them:
13But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth; I humbled my soul with fasting; And my prayer kept returning to my bosom. 14 I went about as though it were my friend or brother; I bowed down mourning, as one who sorrows for a mother.
YHVH is merciful, He is just, He will control the outcome - so praise Him:
27…And let them say continually, "The LORD be magnified, Who delights in the prosperity of His servant."
YHVH, You have told us to pray for those who persecute us - increase Your love in us to pray for all.
How does God feel about issues we face today?
Love of God
(we cannot help but repeat this from the last issue)
Do you love God? Do you love to do His will and obey His commandments? What believer would say no to the first question? Yet would you expect less enthusiastic responses to the second question? Many people, even among those who affirm the faith, have a vague notion of love as a positive feeling. Yet it would be wrong to draw a distinction between the first two questions given above, for one implies the other. God’s will is inherent in His being and inseparable from it. So His word tells you that by this you know that you love Him, when you keep His commandments. He who loves God will also love those He loves, including his brother. (Adopted from a blog post by Dale Cresap)
If you love me, keep my commandments.(John 14:15)
If you keep my commandments, you shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.(John 15:10)
By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.(1John 5:2)
Material in this section is based on various prayer diaries.
Surprising Sources of Pain
It’s an old joke:
"Doctor, it hurts when I lift my left arm over my head!"
"Well then, don’t do that!"
The causes of pain aren’t always obvious. Consider these unexpected sources:
Compiled By Herbert Lockyer
Scriptures form the KJV
21. Gird thy SWORD upon thy thigh, O Most Mighty, with thy Glory and thy Majesty
The Captain of the Host of the Lord Josh 5:14
The Captain of Salvation Heb 2:10
The Author and Finisher of Faith Heb 12:2
A Leader Isa 55:4
A Commander Isa 55:4
Ruler Micah 5:2
A Governor Matt 2:6
The Deliverer Rom 11:26
The Lion of the Tribe of Judah Rev 5:5
An Ensign of the People Isa 11:10
The Chiefest Among Ten Thousand (in an army) or Standard Bearer (marg.) Song 5:10
A Polished Shaft Isa 49:2
The Shield Ps 84:9
22. All POWER is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. (Matt 28:18)
The Lord 1 Cor 12:3 Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.
One Lord Eph 4:5 One Lord…
God Hath Made that Same Jesus Both Lord and Christ Acts 2:36
Lord of Lords Rev 17:14
King of Kings Rev 17:14
Lord Both of the Dead and Living Rom 14:9
Lord of the Sabbath Luke 6:5
Lord of Peace II Th 3:16
Lord of All Acts 10:36
Lord Over All Rom 10:12
23. Him hath God exalted ... to be a PRINCE and a SAVIOUR. (Acts 5:31)
The Messiah the Prince Dan 9:25
The Prince of Life Acts 3:15
A Prince and a Savior Acts 5:31
The Prince of Peace Isa 9:6
The Prince of Princes Dan 8:25
The Prince of the Kings of the Earth Rev 1:5
A Prince (among Israel) Ezek 34:24
The Glory of Thy People Israel Luke 2:32
He That Fills All in All Eph 1:23
The good news of the Kingdom of God
24.He shall REIGN for ever and ever. (Rev 11:15)
The Judge Acts 17:31
The Righteous Judge 2 Tim 4:8
The King Zech 14:16
King of Kings Rev 19:16
Lord of Lords Rev 19:16
A Scepter (out of Israel) Num 24:17
The King's Son Ps 72:1
David Their King Jer 30:9
The King of Israel John 1:49
King of the Daughter of Zion John 12:15
The King of the Jews (born) Matt 2:2, Mark 15:2
The King of the Jews (crucified) John 19:19
The King of Saints, or King of Nations Rev 15:3
King Over All the Earth Zech 14:4,5,9
The King of Righteousness Heb 7:2
The King of Peace Heb 7:2
The King of Glory Ps 24:10
The King in His Beauty Isa 33:17
He Sits King Forever Ps 29:10
Crowned with a Crown of Thorns John 19:2
Crowned with Glory and Honor Heb 2:9
Crowned with a Crown of Pure Gold Ps 21:3
Crowned with Many Crowns Rev 19:12
Amen - So let it be
(These Names and Titles of Yeshua [Jesus] began in MEM issue 138 thru this issue)
Ohnosecond: The fraction of a moment between hitting "send" and realizing you’ve just sent an embarrassing e-mail to everyone in your organization.
Percussive maintenance: Hitting a computer or other electronic device in an attempt to get it to work.
Presenteeism: The opposite of absenteeism - an obsession with being visible at work regardless of how productive you are. (A cause for self-examination)
Have a good day!
(Adapted from Dale Cresap blog)
Do you love your enemies as well as your friends? Yeshua (Jesus) teaches us to love them both, but we love our friends more than our enemies. He loves everyone and promises to meet the basic needs even of those who are far from Him or even oppose Him. If Yeshua will do this for them, how much more will He do for us? He held nothing back in His ultimate sacrifice, how shall He not also freely give you all things? He provides for His enemies but loves His friends without limit. Do we look at our own life and see areas of lack and need? These things serve a purpose that may not be apparent to us now, but He causes all things to work together for good for those who love Him, because of His love for us.
John 3:16"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.
John 14:23Jesus answered and said to him, "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our abode with him.
John 15:13"Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.
As written by the Apostle Paul
1Cor 13:4Love is patient, love is kind, and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant,
5does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong…,
6does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;
7bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8Love never fails…
1Cor 13:13But now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
The love of His Grace; the unceasing operation of His Mighty Power - His love at work in us
2Cor 12:9And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
Michael Boldea Jr. (edited)
Perspective[Where is our love? Our compassion?]
Some things just stop you in your tracks. You can be busy doing a dozen different things, thinking of doing a hundred others, then all of a sudden something happens, and your breath catches in your throat, and the world simply stops.
Such moments are infrequent, so when they happen they are all the more impacting.
I’ve been in the ministry since the age of twelve, have visited the hurting, the broken, the hungry, the naked, the infirm, and the helpless for the better part of thirty years trying to be a present help in their time of need, yet certain stories still impact me to the point of speechlessness.
As we were busy putting together this issue of the newsletter, my brother Daniel forwarded me a short paragraph concerning the Botosanu family, and their current struggle, that had been forwarded to him by our staff in Romania.
I want to share this paragraph with you in its entirety, as it impacted me greatly, and once again reinforced the undeniable reality that given the right perspective our constant attitude should be one of thankfulness and gratitude toward God for all the many blessings He bestows upon us, blessings we often overlook or undervalue in our daily lives.
‘Today we visited the Costel Botosanu family from Mitoc Prut and they really need earnest prayers. They started attending church 2 years ago, but have been hesitating to get baptized. They have 5 children including a set of twin girls. One of the twins, Andreea, who is almost 7 has bone cancer and hasn’t eaten in 3 weeks. The parents have been taking her back and forth to a city about three hours from their home for approximately a year to receive treatments. At this point the doctors have given up hope, but we still believe God can do a miracle in her little body. The parents are now ready to accept God’s will in their lives and have asked to be baptized. The pastor there told us that their lives have already changed and they are crying out to God on behalf of their daughter. Thank you for your prayers for this precious family.’
I don’t know about you, but that paragraph moved me to no end. The only thing I could think about is that if my daughter just skips a meal her mother and I are beside ourselves with worry, never mind having not eaten for three weeks. There are men, women, children and families truly suffering in this world. There are situations that are so heart wrenching that one can but ask why, and do whatever they can to be a comfort, and ease some of the heartache if they are able. I believe this is just such a situation, and this family needs our prayers and our help.
I believe situations like this put our own lives into perspective, and but for the grace of God, it could be me watching helplessly as disease ravages my child. It’s just not something I can gloss over lightly, or take for granted.
Again, I would ask that you pray for a miracle for Andreea, that God would touch her body and restore her, that the doctors would be left to wonder in amazement as to how this could be, and I would also ask that you pray for strength for Costel and his wife, as I know this is a difficult time and a testing of their faith the likes of which many of us could not even comprehend.
As the Body of Christ we must feel for one another, and this is the case even if the other member of the Body is unknown to us, or in a different part of the world altogether.
With love in Christ
Some people find fault as if it were treasure
Do as well as you can today and perhaps you can do better tomorrow
Laughing is the sensation of feeling good all over and showing it mainly in one spot
Worry is like a rocking chair-it keeps you busy and gets you nowhere
The whole worth of a kind deed lies in the love that inspired it
For the LORD loves justice, And does not forsake His godly ones; They are preserved forever…
Are you one of His godly ones?
John 3:16"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Blessed be YHVH (Genesis 14:20And blessed be God Most High…)
1John 2:5but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: 6 the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.
1. They came to Him - Matthew 5:1
3. Galilee - Matthew 2:22-23
4. Righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit - Romans 14:17
5. Remember the Sabbath to keep it holy - Exodus 20:8
6. Goliath - 1 Samuel 17:4
7. Pilate - Matthew 27:65,
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