There's times when our peace is based upon ignorance, but when we awaken to the facts of life, inner peace is impossible unless it's received from Jesus. When Our Lord speaks peace, He makes peace, His words are ever "spirit and life." Have we ever received what Jesus speaks? "My peace I give unto you"---it's a peace which comes from looking into His face and realizing His undisturbedness.
Are we painfully disturbed just now, distracted by the waves and billows of God's providential permission, and having, as it were, turned over the boulders of our belief, are we still finding no well of peace or joy or comfort; is all barren? Then let's look up and receive the undisturbedness of the Lord Jesus. Reflected peace is the proof that we're right with God because we're at liberty to turn our mind to Him. If we're not right with God, we can never turn our mind anywhere but on ourselves. If we allow anything to hide the face of Jesus Christ from us, we're either disturbed or we have a false security.
Are we looking unto Jesus now, in the immediate matter that's pressing and receiving from Him peace? If so, He'll be a gracious benediction of peace in and through us. But if we try to worry it out, we obliterate Him and deserve all we get (frown). We get disturbed because we haven't been considering Him. When one confers with Jesus Christ, the perplexity goes, because He has no perplexity, and our only concern is to abide in Him. Let's lay it all out before Him, and in the face of difficulty, bereavement and sorrow, hear Him say,
"Let not your heart be troubled."
Spiritual Authority The scribes and Pharisees may have sat in Moses' seat, but they didn't have the same spirit Moses had. There are only two realms from which spiritual authority can derive: God's kingdom and the devil's. When the Jews ceased to let God rule over them and set up their own religious system, they fell under the dominion of demons.
Their delusion was such that they could kill God's prophets and believe that they were faithfully serving God. That's the curse of religion. It blinds and deludes its victims.
"Babylon" is a symbolic name for the world system. It's a system of government by men and devils. It's a substitute for the rightful rule of God and of His Son. Psalm 2.
The name comes from what happened when men tried to build the tower of Babel. Genesis 11:4 reveals the motive and spirit behind their effort: "And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven: and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth."
It's easy to see the spirit of pride, self-seeking and self-preservation that was manifest in their words and actions. God was not a part of their plans. He didn't tell them to build a city and a tower. Their plans reflected a spirit of rebellious independence and self-exaltation.
God intervened by confusing their language so they couldn't understand one
another. As a result they were, in fact, scattered and divided. For this
reason, the word "Babylon" also conveys the idea of confusion --- an apt
picture of religion, especially in our day.
"And when they could not come nigh unto Him for the press,
they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken
it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay."
Faith is full of inventions. The house was full, a crowd blocked up the door, but faith found a way of getting at the Lord and placing the palsied man before Him. If we can't get sinners where Jesus is by ordinary methods we must use extraordinary ones. It seems, according to Luke 5:19, that a tiling had to be removed, which would make dust and cause a measure of danger to those below, but where the case is very urgent we must not mind running some risks and shocking some proprieties. Jesus was there to heal, and therefore fall what might, faith ventured all so that her poor paralyzed charge might have his sins forgiven. O that we had more daring faith among us! Let's seek it for ourselves and for our fellow-workers, and let's try today to perform some gallant act...for the love of souls and the glory of the Lord.
The world's constantly inventing; genius serves all the purposes of human desire: cannot faith invent too, and reach by some new means the outcasts who lie perishing around us? It was the presence of Jesus which excited victorious courage in the four bearers of the palsied man: isn't the Lord among us now? Have we seen His face for ourselves today? Have we felt His healing power in our own souls? If so, then through door, through window, or through roof, let's breaking through all impediments, labour to bring poor souls to Jesus. All means are good and decorous when faith and love are truly set on winning souls. If hunger for bread can break through stone walls, surely hunger for souls is not to be hindered in its efforts. O Lord, make us quick to suggest methods of reaching Thy poor sin-sick ones, and bold
to carry them out at all hazards.
Witnessing at the Doctor's Office
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My wife 'n I first met Michelle at one of only two certified chiropractors in Guatemala. Michelle's specialty is a type of massage therapy that prepares a patient for the doctor's adjustment. That particular afternoon, as I accompanied my wife, it was Michelle's second or third time to help her. We'd noticed before that she seemed very open to the scriptures, so while Michelle worked on my wife I nudged her heart's door open a little more with a verse or two; then my wife picked up the conversation from there.
Soon the flood door opened and the therapist shared he past story of rape and rejection. She'd tried to commit suicide and even take her two young daughters with her to death, but God had intervened. After praying with her and sharing the good news of God's love and grace to whosoever has been abused, she responded, with tears in her eyes, that she had a new hope now in her heart that she had never had before. Life for Michelle is now worth living, thanks to the saving grace of Jesus Christ.