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Please pray for UCLA, there are shootings reported on campus right now.

2 Injured in UCLA Shooting; Campus on Lockdown

28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,[a] for those who are called according to his purpose.29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. – Romans 8:28-29

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Article on “The Most Underwhelmingly Astounding Fact” by Tim Challies, :

http://www.challies.com/articles/the-most-underwhelmingly-astounding-fact?utm_source=feedblitz&utm_medium=FeedBlitzEmail&utm_content=5575&utm_campaign=0

Great article and reminder that though I am nothing before God, He chose to become nothing (Christ from God to man) to show me that I am very, very significant to Him. And you are too!

“The Bible assures us of two facts that are in no way contradictory: We are very, very small, and we are very, very significant. We are small in comparison to the infinite and eternal God who created us, but we have the utmost significance because we are created in his image. We are microscopic when compared to God, but an integral part of his plan for this universe. We are mere dust, but the Son of God saw fit to clothe himself in this dust. The most astounding fact is not that we are made of the same stuff as the stars, but that God chose to be made of the same stuff as us.”

C: God finishes justice and reconciling man to Him. He then speaks to John in future tense.

 

O: 6 To those who are thirsty God gives Himself freely to satisfy them.

7 If we seek God we will find Him, and the Lord will adopt us as His own children.

8 For the wicked and sinners, they will perish in hell.

M: Does this mean only the perfect may go to heaven? No! Romans 3:23 says “There is no one righteous, not one.” No person on earth is perfect before God. So who are those who conquer? Those who acknowledge that they have wronged God. Those who acknowledge that they have been cowards who try to run away from taking responsibility of their wrongs against God, those who acknowledge they have been believing God to be less worthy than them self, Those who acknowledge they have been trusting in their own strength, wisdom, and ideas as opposed to God’s. Those who acknowledge that they have been prostituting their strength, time, energy, life to a person/thing/idea that is not God, who alone is worthy to be lived for. Those who acknowledge that they have been liars and believing themselves to be right before a Holy God.

Those who do not acknowledge these refuse to repent and instead of freely receiving God’s gift of life, they will lose it forever.

A: Acknowledge that I am a sinner in need of God’s mercy and grace.

1. Be grateful for His grace

– Don’t take His Son’s sacrifice for granted, believing myself to have deserved any part of it.

– Give thanks to God continually for what He has done.

– Be patient towards others because whatever wrong they may do to me, I have done worse towards God in the murdering of His Son, desecrating of His name.

2. Pray and live a life that others may understand their need for a Savior and return to Him.

3. Constantly be receiving God’s gift of life.

– Meditate on the gospel

– Enjoy what He has made (food, fellowship, fun, nature, family, friends, etc.) and give thanks

– Read God’s Word and receive it, apply it, live it out.

 

C: John sees the future in a vision. Satan, the beast, the anti-christ and unbelievers are judged and cast into hell.

O: 1 New heaven and new earth come with no sea.

2 God creates the Holy City and presents it to His people

3 God chooses to live among men. We will be His people, and He our God for all eternity.

4 No more crying, no more pain. God will wipe all that away; it only exists now, while sin still exists.

5 ?Does that mean He is in the process of making all things new?

M: 1-3 When God creates the heavens and the earth, there will no longer be any sea (suffering). As we receive the Holy City as our beautifully dressed bride, even greater is that God Himself chooses to be with men and be with them, be their God. What will it be like to wait for my bride at the altar? The splendor of the Holy City will be as it, if not far greater. I long more often for my wife than for heaven though!

A: Remember the future to come

1. New heaven and new earth, no more sea (suffering).

2 Holy City will be as a beautifully dressed bride to us, the groom

3 Greatest of all, Emmanuel, God with us. Forever.

Father, in You there is no beginning and end. While I only see a portion of time, You see it all at once. Give me more of a longing for heaven and looking forward to the time when fellowship between You and all Your people will be perfect. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

“23 He has broken my strength in midcourse;
    he has shortened my days.
24 “O my God,” I say, “take me not away
    in the midst of my days—
you whose years endure
    throughout all generations!” (ESV)

O: 18-20 The writer records his suffering so that future generations may know the Lord saves and give Him praise.

“Hear the groans and release those condemned to death”

21-22 So the Lord will be praised at the end of this age, when all His people will be gathered and worship the Lord.

23-24 God gave the Psalmist suffering so that he would call on the name of the Lord for help

25-27 and give Him all glory and honor and praise, praising His power in creating the heavens and the earth, His timelessness, and never changing, always the same, the same God of love and justice will remain forever.

28 God will rescue and bless not only His people, but the generations after them. That means my children, their children, their children’s children, etc. will partake and enjoy the Lord forever!

M: To be able to ascribe all His suffering and afflictions as from the Lord, some may call him crazy, or his God as not all powerful, all loving. Yet the Psalmist gives the reason for the suffering in the very next verse, so that he would call out to the Lord,

24 Praise and worship Him

25 Ascribe all worthiness in God alone, nothing else in heaven and earth can compare

27 Bringing the focus back to God Himself

28 and looking forward to future promises.

A: Recognize that every circumstance, the joyful times and times of sorrow are from the Lord. In times of affliction:

1. Call out to Him for deliverance

2. Praise and worship Him for who He is, remembering His perfect character. Turn attention to God instead of my ability.

3. Look forward to future blessings!

Father, I praise You for Your Words of life, for being sovereign. Forgive me for not turning to You in my afflictions, please grant me wisdom by Your Spirit to turn and praise You in the storm and give You all the honor and glory and power.

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