Health and Healing #8

Eighth in a series about what the Bible has to say about healing.

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

James 1:2-8

I referenced this passage already in #3 with little commentary but would like us to revisit the problem of double mindedness (doubt) and faith. Most casual Bible readers can recite that “We walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). We can find evidence of the importance of wholeheartedness in Jeremiah the prophet:

And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:13

and in the book of Revelation:


So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Revelation 3:16

Revelation 3:15

We have many sources that war against our walk of faith. That goes all the way back to the temptation in the Garden of Eden, “Has God really said?”

What if the doctor gives a bad report? He is highly trained. We have been programmed over a long time to count her trustworthy. In fact, the medical professional most likely will paint you the worst-case scenario. I expect he has been coached that to do less will expose him to more liability, lest someone claim he did not convey the seriousness of the situation. Our own symptoms vie for our constant attention, making it harder to have faith (expect) their sudden disappearance. Pains nag. We worry.

That is why the first part of our opening verses in James is so important. The Lord is faithful and affords us many opportunities to exercise our faith, perfecting us until we lack nothing!

In my journal earlier this week, the Lord reminded me how much this is like my personal physical exercise program. I could never have handled the weight that I work out with now when I was first starting out. No matter that I was much younger then. But by constantly pressing forward and building on the effort of days before, progress is slow and steady. Muscle tone gets better, bone density is maintained, circulation is improved, and I realize all manner of benefits.

When it comes to our walking by faith, we are well advised to not wait for a desperate crisis to get started.

It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man.

Psalm 118:8

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Health and Healing #6

1 When He was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him.
2 And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped Him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, Thou canst make me clean.
3 And Jesus put forth His hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.

16 When the even was come, they brought unto Him many that were possessed with devils: and He cast out the spirits with His word, and healed all that were sick:
17 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.

Matthew 8:1-3, 16-17

https://biblehub.com/interlinear/isaiah/53-4.htm

The leper did not apparently doubt Jesus’ ability to heal, but was not sure of his willingness. Jesus said, “I will”. The scripture is clear here that Jesus healed all who came seeking.

God is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34). What He has done for another, He will do for you.

If you pay attention long, you will hear some assert that such miracles have passed away before our current era. They will, no doubt, rationalize their excuses in some way. Do not believe them, their rationalizations are merely the opinions of men being vaunted over the nature and character of the Lord. Instead, have faith in the eternal consistency and love of God (Hebrews 13:8).

https://biblehub.com/interlinear/hebrews/13-8.htm

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Health and Healing #5

Fifth in a series highlighting things the Bible has to say about the spiritual connections to health and healing. (This installment obviously a discussion with Jesus from my personal journal.)

Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well. It gave me great joy when some believers came and testified about your faithfulness to the truth, telling how you continue to walk in it. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

3 John 1:2-4 (NIV)

Bible Hub Interlinear for 3 John 1:2

Me: Lord , it seems there are a lot of senses that the word “soul” is given. Some take it to be synonymous with “spirit” and, if I recall correctly, Watchman Nee translated it as meaning the mind, will, and emotions (as distinct from the spirit). Strong’s has the Greek for this passage as psyche (from psucho; breath, spirit). Looking psyche up in the dictionary only serves to reinforce that this word has been twisted around a lot of different axles. How does the sense in which this is understood matter?

Jesus: To start on your question, let Me refer you to a passage that explicitly talks about bridging (or unifying) this division:

And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit (pneuma) and soul (psyche) and body (soma) be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Thessalonians 5:23

God is Spirit (Pneuma), and those who worship Him must worship in spirit (pneumati) and truth.”

John 4:24

This passage in John 4 lets you know that God is Spirit. Yet no one who knows God would consider this identity as excluding the mind of God. Or emotions:

The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love.

1 John 4:8

Let me circle you back to the reference to walking in the truth in that opening passage from 3 John and compare this:

Jesus saith unto him, I Am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

John 14:6

You asked how the sense of soul (and spirit) matter. Let me remind you that John’s prayer is about “walking in the truth”. That is, that there be no shadow of division between the spirit soul and body. You referenced Romans 12:2 last time. That is a good verse to remember in this context. Those who are trusting in Me have been renewed in their spirit, in fact – have My Spirit indwelling, and must still be diligent to renew the mind. The body will be much more likely to align to the redeemed spirit if the mind is renewed with the truth (filled with the word, believed, and exercised in faith).

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Philippians 4:8 9

You also referenced this passage from Philippians last time, but it is well worth remembering. Many live as though they have no control over their own thoughts. The Spirit empowers such control, if the believer is willing to submit to the truth of the Word.

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

(2 Cor 10:5 NIV)

Paul shows a stark contrast between the negativity of the unregenerate heart and the one bearing a spiritual crop by the power of God:

Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Galatians 5:21-23

See here, as I spoke of the kingdom of God, and the people were healed as the truth was given:

And the apostles, when they were returned, told him all that they had done. And He took them, and went aside privately into a desert place belonging to the city called Bethsaida. And the people, when they knew it, followed him: and He received them, and spake unto them of the kingdom of God, and healed them that had need of healing.

Luke 9:10-11

But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:

1 Peter 1:15-17

One important marker of holy conversation is that it aligns with the Truth.

Me: Thank You Jesus! I love You! You have given me a lot to mull over!

Jesus: You are welcome! I love you!

Alan Gough’s Scroll Work for 23’rd Psalm (my photo)

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Health and Healing #4

Out of the Heart, the Mouth Speaks

Fourth in a continuing series of posts about the strong things the Bible has to say about health and healing and our part in it.

But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:

Matthew 15:18-19

O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.

Matthew 12:34-35

For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.

James 3:7-9

Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth. Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!

James 3:3-5

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.

Psalm 19:14

Though Jesus has pointed out in Matthew 15:18-19 (above) the involvement of the mouth of the unredeemed in his own defilement, There are plenty of other scriptures that highlight the source of a good heart, and the use of the mouth to empower the release of those things into your realm.

Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

Proverbs 4:23

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Philippians 4:8

Jesus explains His the source of His words and the mighty importance of them.

For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.

John 12:49-50

The enemy hates our God’s-image-bearing souls. The scripture says the devil paces about, looking for prey. He has no power over a Christ-believer, unless the believer gives him the authority that rightfully belongs to the image bearer. Why would anyone do that? Often, we do it unwittingly. The devil has one method: deception. One deception is that our negative attitudes and talk are empty. In fact, by what we believe and say, we open the door to his attack. Remember that we just read that our faithless spew defiles; defiles our life, defiles our health, defiles our peace, defiles our purpose, and on and on. Don’t volunteer to be prey.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

1 Peter 5:8

And He tells us how our speech will come to reflect truth. The speech of the Holy Spirit describes our future. However, if we, being made in His image, instead speak a negative prophecy of our future, that power is given to us. We can have what we say. Our words are NOT empty. They reveal our attitude and our expectations. Another way to say it: Our words reveal the nature of our faith.

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

John 16:13

Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

Proverbs 18:21

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Romans 12:2

Sickness does not conform to the good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Instead it belongs to the realm of him who comes to steal and kill and destroy.

How can we renew our minds to resist conforming to the worldly outlook? We learn the promises of God, and we believe them. Let those promises be the power that crosses our lips. This transformation does not happen overnight, but let it begin today.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Philippians 4:8

Always been this way?

Health and Healing #3

This is the third post in a series on things the Bible has to say about the healing nature of Jehovah Rapha, God our Healer. It is my hope as we progress, that you, dear reader, will become awed by the depth of the Scriptural evidence of this part of the redemption purchased for believers by Jesus at the cross as surely as we trust in His deliverance from the penalty of sin.

Let’s start today by considering the authority of the believer and the importance of our words and their backing by belief.

And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.
For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.
Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

Mark 11:22-25

What is your mountain? What apparently-immovable hindrance (or attitude) is blocking your way? If your self talk is defeatist, that hill will indeed remain stationary. Instead let your words be filled with faith in Him!

Does it go without saying? Those who practice witchcraft are attempting to conjure according to a perversion of this principle. Namely, that the form of their words will fabricate the outcome they desire (by magic). Notice in Mark 11:22 that the praying believer is first to have faith in God and in verse 25 is to believe he is receiving from God. It is God’s power. We know from the Scripture that God is holy. (If we know Him at all, our experience with Him bears that out, without question.) That He is holy means that He is wholly consistent: His words perfectly match His actions and His acts entirely obey His word. He never violates His nature: loving, just, wise, forbearing, giving, protecting, nurturing, attentive, to name a few characteristics. Do not, therefore, get the wrong idea about this awesome spiritual principle.

Here is another good evidence of our Source and His consistency:

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

James 1:17

Good and perfect gifts are evidence of His consistently loving nature. I love that He is referred to as the “Father of lights” here. Jesus contrasted of the good gifts given by the Father with the best we can muster on our own:

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

Matthew 7:11

A couple of passages in Genesis provide some exhortation to make our voice and our belief consistent, because we were made to be in harmony with Him (in His nature).

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Genesis 1:27

Backing up to the first part of Genesis 1 we find repeated reference to God speaking all of creation into existence. You know how it goes. He was exercising precisely the consistent expectation that Jesus is telling us to have in Mark 11. Making our words reflect unwavering faith in promises that we expect Him to deliver on is one way we are to walk in His way as image-bearers of our Creator.

Note there was no stubborn resistance to the Word of God in His creation work. No stars failed to begin their nuclear reactions, no galaxies failed to take their appointed shape. No particle of creation refused to exert gravitational attraction of all the other particles. That bears repeating. First He said, “let there be”, then, “and there was”.

Be wary that doubt counters faith. Don’t despair. We usually get opportunity to practice greater stability.

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

James 1:2-8

Who is the enemy that contends against you? You do not face your accuser alone.

Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish.
Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them, even them that contended with thee: they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought.
For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.

Isaiah 41:10-13

Finally, remember that these words of the Father in Isaiah are looking forward to the deliverance Jesus would attain for us at the Cross. Our perspective is looking back to the finished work of Jesus.

It is finished.

John 19:30

Health and Healing #2

Second in a series of scriptures and meditations on what the Bible has to say about the healing gifts of God through our Savior Jesus.

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

Romans 10:9

There will be more on this as we go, but for now let me assert that salvation is first a spiritual redemption that has the potential to effect remarkable change in the body and soul as we walk by faith in the truth of His promises. Let me also try to drive home the power of what comes out of our mouths. Here is a powerful promise to walk in:

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

John 14:12

How is this even possible? We live in a world that seems to delight in communicating the powerlessness of the individual against forces that are presented as overwhelming. That is a lie. The believer in Jesus can have the very presence of God in the depths of his being in the Person of the Holy Spirit. No power can stand against Him, save your free will (because He allows it).

Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

John 16:7


Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

John 14:17

Look at these instructions Jesus gave to the 70 as He sent them out:

Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.

Matthew 10:8

Does that seem like work you would expect out of common folk: fishermen, tax collectors, laborers, craftsmen? I will leave you with a demonstration of a possible, even likely, stumbling block. Unbelief. It stymied even Jesus:

And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works? Is not this the carpenter’s son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things? And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house. And he did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.

Matthew 13:50-58

Sometimes unbelief manifests itself in what we think we know instead of allowing ourselves to be convinced of the truth revealed in Scripture.

Looking west from home.

Health and Healing #1

Did you know that the Bible has a lot to say about health and healing? I thought I might start to share some of these passages, one at a time.

10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.

11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:

15 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

1 John 5:10-15

Well, maybe one more verse in an effort to belabor the point:


The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

John 10:10

These passages are speaking to those with a vital relationship with the Lord Jesus. Believers may pray for others and see healing as a witness. This is essentially what Jesus was doing in His earthly ministry with regard to healing. The power of it was mysteriously flowing slightly upstream in time from the work He would finish later at the cross. If you want to see these promises at work in your life on a consistent basis, ask Jesus for that relationship. He longs to have that rapport with you, to welcome you as family.

Notice the life is IN the Son, and it is available to those who are in relationship with Him. Much more to come…

Foolish Arrogance

A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man holds it in check. Proverbs 29:11

BibleHub.com

Me: Hello Father!

Abba: Good afternoon, Jon!

Me: Father, what is the relationship between being foolish and being arrogant?

Abba: The scripture points out that “the fear of the Lord” is the beginning of Wisdom. (Wisdom is an antonym of foolishness.)

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.

Psalm 111:10

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Proverbs 1:7

5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
7 Be not wise in thine own eyes (arrogant): fear the Lord and depart from evil.
8 It shall be health to thy navel [1], and marrow [2] to thy bones.

Proverbs 3

Even as the umbilical sustained you in the womb, your connection to Me will sustain you in life. You did not create the umbilical connection before your birth. That is of My wisdom. You will not sustain yourself in life as I intend if you persist in your own strength.

Me: Thank You Father! I love You!

Abba: You are welcome! I love you!


[1] Literally, umbilical. Figuratively, the center of strength

[2] Marrow produces blood cells (health and life)

Conviction

I am grateful for the Word.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

John 1:1-5

And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

Revelation 13:16-18

I am going to assume, up front, that no reader will be unaware of the use of an executive order by the White House to direct the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) to create a so-called emergency temporary standard (ETS) to require all employers with more than 100 workers to show proof of vaccination or require masking and proof of negative weekly testing at the employee’s expense. If not, that ETS link will take you to the OSHA site.

I have been working to reconcile my understanding to properly address this threat to livelihood. One might think the answer is to go to work for a smaller enterprise, but the Executive Branch is signaling intent to extend to small business as well. The OSHA ETS is carefully written looking forward to that step. (One increment at a time, as always.)

You might ask, “Why have you cited the passage in Revelation 13 pertaining to the ‘mark of the beast’”? Do I think vaccine documentation fulfills the definition of the mark? No, I think it is apparently still short of the description laid out in Revelation. However, there are obvious components of that more intense scenario involved in this situation; prevention of trade (by deprivation of income), identification of individuals based on certain choices (impressed to make decisions contrary to the direction of God), and man as the apparent source, for starters.

I believe the current exercise has at least two purposes. The first is as a test: “If we run this up the flag pole, will the populace salute?” Failing the first test, the second purpose becomes more important – conditioning more people to incrementally surrender their personal sovereignty by continually elevating the level of coercion.

I work for an employer with a few thousand employees, so the first roll-out applies to me as it is now written. Employers are placed in an untenable position by prohibitive penalties for “violations”. An employer determined to resist on principle would be fined out of existence forthwith. Let us think about these penalties for a minute. In fact, let’s limit our gaze to the masking requirement for unvaccinated but weekly-tested employees. A single employee caught with only his nose uncovered could be considered in violation and subject the employer to a $13,653 penalty. Repeated or willful infractions have a 10X multiplier. Therefore, the second violation could cost the employer (who has been made responsible for enforcement) $136,530. That is for just one recalcitrant employee who – horrors, wanted to breathe better – out of potentially thousands. If this level of penalty is considered in conjunction with the near-real-time reporting requirement, one can easily see why an employer might start to use facial recognition/mask monitoring as a protection against this huge liability. What’s to recognize in a masked individual? Well, the forehead is visible. Hmmmm.

Because employers will be coerced (financially) to be agents of the government (OSHA), possible resistance will be mounted only by the individual. This is by design, of course. Imposing isolation has been the modus operandi for some time now. My belief is that these genetic therapies (propagandized as vaccines) are part of an evil affront to the created order. The gain-of-function manipulation that resulted in the virus itself is part of that. Sorry if you have taken the jab and that stance offends, but that is another entire discussion. So what about compliance with the smaller increment of masking-and-testing to keep working, buying groceries and utilities this winter?

The Holy Spirit handed me an epiphany a couple of days ago in the form of a question. Even if this tyrant’s edict via OSHA is merely a practice run in preparation for a time closer to the end or a diabolical barometer to determine if we are “there” yet, do I want to practice accepting a “precursor mark” to make it more likely that accepting the eventual “mark” will not look like a step too far?

I pray the ongoing legal challenges will prevail. God bless those who have started mounting them. I pray the courts are not all already too far around the bend. But a conviction has easily solidified in answering the Holy Spirit’s question to my own satisfaction. By the limitless grace of God, I am going to resist refuse with all that is within me by the power of God Almighty.

Lord, thank you that You are Jehovah-Jireh, God my Provider. In You I trust. I pray the ones implementing this evil will turn to You and repent. I pray the same for their abettors.

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Resistance is Not Futile

I am grateful that You speak to us and have equipped us to hear, if we want to.

In God, whose word I praise, In God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?

Psalm 56:4

Me: Good morning Father!

Abba: Good morning, Jon!

Me: I was reading in the beginning of the book of Job, the last day or so. There are these instances where You explicitly allow Satan to have his way with Job, or is it that You let him have Your way?

Abba: Does that seem out of character for Me? There is nothing I have made that I cannot use, even rebellious angels.

Me: It seems contrary to Your name as Jehovah Rapha that You would make Job sick, even using/allowing Satan to do it.

Abba: Then that would be an important issue for you to resolve, since the world is full of sick people. You often rightly say that sickness is of the Devil. That it came into the world by Adam deeding his authority over to Satan. That is why you see him on the earth:

6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. 7 The Lord said to Satan, “From where do you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From roaming about on the earth and walking around on it.” Job 1

You see from the notes in your Bible and the interlinear part of BibleHub.com that the word translated “Satan” throughout this passage in Job is “adversary, one who withstands”. It is what he does. And surely you know the text in written from a human perspective. Satan did not have to appear in a particular location to speak to Me about what was on his mind, like the members of a human extended family assembling to talk or Job’s friends coming to see him. When the scripture talks about My sitting on My throne, it is a statement about my positional authority; not my physical location, since I Am everywhere all the time. I Am Spirit (John 4:24).

Think about what you know about strength training. Straining your muscles against a force that withstands or opposes your efforts makes them stronger. Straining your brain against a challenge makes it more able. Even fighting against a virus equips your immune system to overcome it if it attempts to invade again. Do any of these seem pleasant in the moment?

Me: No. If experience did not teach that these things bring improvement, my natural inclination would be to shy away from them at all costs.

Are you saying that we need Satan that we may resist him (James 4:7) to develop our “spiritual muscles”?

Abba: I am saying that I work all things for your good (Romans 8:28). Since Satan is your adversary, it makes sense for you to be strong in Me (Ephesians 6:10-18) and put on the full armor I have given you.

Me: Thank You Father! I love You!

Abba: You are welcome! I love you!

The First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States

(Post featured image from Pexels, Fascia of the previous Newseum, mine. )