Bible Studies & Devotionals
From Olive Branch Ministries
By Mark and Tinsley Baker
Get all the Soul Foods online @:http://www.olivebranchministries.us
I have felt compelled in my spirit to write about the things going on. There is much happening in the worlds financial systems and in our own country right now. We are having to bail out Fannie and Freddie. The stock market is in chaos, the cost of oil and food have fluctuated all over the place. Our 401K s have taken a big hit, many have lost a great portion of their retirement and the future seems very insecure, and in the midst of all of this, menís hearts are failing them for fear. Yet, there is good news in the midst of these things.
--New English Bible
Heb:2:14: the children of a family share the same flesh and blood; and so He too shared ours, so that through death he might break the power of him who had death at his command, that is, the devil; 15: and might liberate those who, through fear of death, had all their lifetime been in servitude. 16: it is not angels, mark you, that He takes to Himself, but the sons of Abraham. 17: And therefore He had to be made like these brothers of His in every way, so that He might be merciful and faithful as their high priest before God, to expiate the sins of the people. 18: For since He himself has passed through the test of suffering, He is able to help those who are meeting their test now.
This is good news to anyone who will hear. We have been liberated from the fear of death. It says we had all our lifetime been in servitude. One translation says it like this, were subject to slavery all their lives.
But thank God, THANK GOD, We have been liberated, we have been set free. This is not going to happen one day, it has already happened
We are in the beginning of terrible times, fear has gripped many. We need to ask ourselves where our faith is placed. If you have not done this, then now is a very good time to take stock. The signs are all around us. A time when things that can be shaken will be shaken
Hebrews 12:27 Now this, "Yet once more,'' indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain.
The Living Bible says it like thisÖ
Hebrews 12:27 By this he means that he will sift out everything without solid foundations, so that only unshakable things will be left.
That does not have to be us. We are being called to stand strong on our solid foundation. We are called to such a time as this!
Menís hearts are failing them for fearÖ look around and you will see this everywhere.
Jesus talked about this, I believe we are entering this time now.
Luke 21:22 "For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. 23. "But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! For there will be great distress in the land and wrath upon this people.
24. "And they will fall by the edge of the sword, and be led away captive into all nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.
25. "And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; 26. "men's hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of heaven will be shaken. 27. "Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28. "Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.''
We have to ask ourselves where is our treasure? It is a time to check up our priorities and ask ourselves if we are seeking Godís kingdom first? If we are, then we can have great confidence for we can say if God is for me who can be against me. It is not a time for the kingdom minded children of God to be afraid but to look up for our redemption is drawing near. A time to trust in the lord with all our heart and lean not to our own understanding and in all our ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct our path. Now would be a good time to start trusting in the One true God.
Fear is a terrible thing, it brings torment. The world is choking on it right now, but it should not and doesnít have to be this way with us. Where there is fear, there is no peace, there is no joy, there is no happiness. When you fear, you put more faith in the worlds system then in the Word of God. You might not say it like that, yet when you fear you are doing that very thing.
Fear never helped anyone become victorious. It never helped anyone get through the circumstances of life. It is always the beginning of defeat. It always leads down the road of failure. Praise God we have been liberated! Praise God we have been set free! We must acknowledge that Godís Word is true, and just plain start acting like what God says is so.
-- Revised Standard
Romans 8:37: No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
It doesnít say we will be more than conquerors some day when we get to Heaven. No, it says, We are more than conquerors. Here on this world, NOW. Thatís when. Here is where we need it. We wonít have to worry about it when we get to heaven.
-- Darby's Bible
1 John 4:18: There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has torment, and he that fears has not been made perfect in love.
The Word of God says that the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost.
Ro.5:5. Says this. So if the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts, and it has, and perfect love casts out all fear, and it does, then why are Christians still in bondage to fear? Thatís a very good question! One reason for this is a lack of trust in our Heavenly Father, and a lack of confidence in His Word. How do you get that kind of confidence in Gods Word? Well, you have to go to the Word to get the answer. I love the 91st psalm,
Psalm 91:14. Because he loves me," says the Lord, "I will rescue him:
I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
First of all, you love God, Heís given us the ability to love Him, and walk in that love, this is something we have to do. Love is much more than a feeling. Love is always expressed in action. Our Father will never force us to do anything. We have a free will. We have a free choice, it is our choice and ours alone to make.
Secondly, we have to acknowledge his name.
Acknowledgement is more than just saying something, although that is part of it,
true acknowledgement comes from the heart.
Ro.10:9. because, if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
10. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved.
We must line up our faith and our words with what God says in His Word and then we will see the victory. So what are you acknowledging? Fear and death?, or faith in God and His provision.
Letís acknowledge Him as our Savior, our Lord, our Redeemer, our Sanctification,
our Healer, the Supplier of all our needs! Fear has a tendency to just vanish away when we start meditating on Godís love for us, and we start to truly acknowledge Him.
2Tm:1:7: For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
If you have fear, you must realize, it is not from God. Cast it down and refuse it! Start to acknowledge what Gods Word says about you, that He has given you a spirit of power, and of love, and a sound mind. Thatís the kind of acknowledgement that will get you over the top, thatís the kind of acknowledgement that will bring you peace and victory. When you start to acknowledge what Godís Word has to say about a situation, then, you have given Him permission to move on your behalf.
He.3:1. Therefore, holy brethren, who share in a heavenly call, consider Jesus, the apostle and high priest of our confession.
He canít do much, if we are not lining up our confession with His Word,
We are in a sense tying His hands, and not giving Him the permission that He has to have in order to act. You see, He watches over His Word to perform it, and if you are speaking opposite of what His Word says, then there is nothing for Him to perform, is there?
Iíll close with this Word from the book of Revelation.
Rv:1:17: And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:
18. I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen;
and have the keys of hell and of death.
Do you know Jesus as your Lord and Savior? Do you want to be a joint heir with Christ?
If so, I urge you to earnestly pray the following prayer.
Dear Heavenly Father, I come to you in the name of Jesus. Your word says, "Öand the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out." (Jn.6:37),
So I know You wonít cast me out, but You take me in, And I thank you for it. You said in your Word, "whoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.'' (Ro. 10:13).
I am calling on Your name, So I know You have saved me now, You also said, "Öthat if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes to righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made to salvation." (Ro.10:9,10).
I believe in my heart that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. I believe He was raised from the dead for my justification. And I confess Him now as my Lord, Because Your Word says, "Ö with the heart one believes to righteousnessÖ" and I do believe with my heart, I have now become the righteousness of God in Christ. (2 Cor. 5:21),
And I am saved! Thank You, Lord!
I can now truthfully say, I see myself as a born again child of God!
Glory to God!!!! Amen.