Intense Commitment

If we have received Jesus as Lord and Savior, we are to make an intense commitment of our hearts, minds, and love to Him. In Genesis 32:26, Jacob, in what appears to be an encounter with God, exclaimed: “I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.” The blessing Jacob sought is thought to be God, Himself! Is our intense commitment to be blessed with the Presence of God in the Person of Jesus? Are we determined, with His enabling, to know Jesus intimately and walk closely with Him through life? Is He supreme in our affections? Does the thought of grieving Him move us to holy living? Is our character and conduct such that He can approve both? If we can answer: “YesI” then we know something of revival. Can we identify with Fanny Crosby’s declarations in her hymn, “Give Me Jesus?” She wrote: “Take the world, but give me Jesus, all its joys are but a name; but His love abideth ever, through eternal years the same. Take the world, but give me Jesus, sweetest comfort of my soul; with my Savior watching o’er me, I can sing though billows roll. Take the world, but give me Jesus, let me view His constant smile; then throughout my pilgrim journey light will cheer me all the while. Take the world, but give me Jesus; In His cross my trust shall be, till, with clearer, brighter vision, face to Face my Lord I see. Oh, the height and depth of mercy!  Oh, the length and breadth of love!  Oh, the fullness of redemption, pledge of endless life above!” Selah! Revival is knowing Jesus in close, clean, personal fellowship!  Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

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The Vision Glorious

We have much that we give time and attention to here on earth. We often give money and effort to things and people down here. To a certain extent, this is proper. Let me ask: how much time, attention, money and effort do we devote to fixing our eyes upon Jesus? The Psalmist, in Psalm 42:2, exclaimed: “My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God” and asks: “when shall I come and appear before God?” Have we experienced cravings like that? Really centering our focus on His glorious Person, loving Him, longing to please Him, praising, thanking and honoring Him, we will experience revival! How badly do we want this to be our experience? We might center on Him in a sterile way, going through the motions in a dry “duty way,” with little heart in the matter. Or, we could be among those that Jesus in Matthew 5:6 gave a wonderful promise to when He declared: “Blessed (are) they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.” He is our righteousness, our Living Bread, our milk, our meat and our well of salvation. Revival is Jesus! Clara Teare Williams expressed in her hymn, “Satisfied,” what looks suspiciously like salvation and revival: “All my life I had a longing for a drink from some clear spring that I hoped would quench the burning of the thirst I felt within. Feeding on the husks around me, till my strength was almost gone, longed my soul for something better, only still to hunger on. Poor I was, and sought for riches, something that would satisfy, but the dust I gathered round me only mocked my soul’s sad cry. Well of water, ever springing,  Bread of Life so rich and free, untold wealth that never faileth, my Redeemer is to me.” Selah! Salvation gives new life; revival sets our hearts on Jesus, Whose life is to fill us.   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

Worlds Apart!

The “pull” of this world is strong! Hence, the warning we find in James 4:4. James asks: “….know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever, therefore, will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” Stark words that we would do well to carefully consider. The lives of those whose Lord and Savior is Jesus are part of another world! Colossians 3:3 speaks of that world: “For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.” This world and our fallen world are as far apart as the east is from the west. We can’t live as this sinful world does! We don’t accept the humanistic worldview of those who have never received Christ. Our world-view, motives, goals, interests, behavior, entertainment standards and desires are poles apart! If they are not, we need to go back over James 4:4. If we have gradually been pulled down into this world-system and are not open to rescue, we may be “enemies” of God! If we are His, start now to: “Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.” (From James 4:8). How do we do that? Confess all sin(s). Turn from them. Spend quality time in His Word and prayer. Read, watch and listen to what is Spiritually edifying. Develop strong relationships with Christians who are serious about the things of God. Listen to sound Godly music. Participate in a serious Bible study. The lyrics, in “What Is the World to Me?” by G. M. Pferfferkorn, give us an idea of the longings of a genuine believer: “What is the world to me with all its vaunted pleasure when You, and You alone, Lord Jesus, are my Treasure! You only, dearest Lord, my soul’s delight shalt be; you are my peace, my rest. What is the world to me! The world seeks to be praised and honored by the mighty yet never once reflects that they are frail and flighty. But what I truly prize above all things is He, my Jesus, He alone. What is the world to me! The world seeks after wealth and all that mammon offers, yet never is content though gold should fill its coffers. I have a higher good, content with it I’ll be: my Jesus is my wealth. What is the world to me! What is the world to me! My Jesus is my treasure, my life, my health, my wealth, my friend, my love, my pleasure, my joy, my crown, my all, my bliss eternally. Once more, then, I declare: what is the world to me!” Selah! If this hymn reflects what is in our hearts, revival is underway!   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

When the Coals are Flickering

Before I even begin today, let me say that I am not writing as an authority on revival. I am writing as one who has had a taste of it and am longing for a major moving of the Holy Spirit in our world today. Let me begin by saying that personal revival can be experienced by anyone who knows Jesus as Lord and Savior, if we are serious about wanting it. Are we moving in the right direction? As the first part of James 4:8 makes clear, we need to: “Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.” If one person is revived, it can be contagious! A starting point is owning up to any and all sin(s) that we have allowed to be coddled in our lives. Asking for and accepting God’s forgiveness and cleansing, we seek God and His help to purge out the sin(s). Loving God and the things of God, we must make our relationship with Him our number one priority! When we stop fooling around and get down to serious business with God, we can expect revival! As long as God is incidental in our daily lives, we will never know any true revival. God demands for any idols in our lives to be destroyed. Love of the things of the world, seeking fame, wealth, popularity, sinful pleasures, being accepted by the world, are some of the idols that have to go. In his hymn, “O for a Closer Walk with God,” William Cowper’s plea must be our honest plea, if we have any true longing for revival: “The dearest idol I have known, whate’er that idol be, help me to tear it from Thy throne and worship only Thee.” Selah! God grant that in this age of Laodicean passivity, some might be stirred up to move closer and closer to God, until ignited with the holy flame of revival.     Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

What about Revival?

I hope to do a short series on revival. Why? Because I sense a lot of misunderstanding. I’m reasonably sure that many know little about the subject. For example: it is not an exciting week of services with good singing and preaching (although revival can occur in that kind of situation). It is not having an emotional excitement that “fizzles out” when the stimuli is ended. It is a genuine desire for God, for Jesus, for the Holy Spirit. It is a strong appetite for God’s Word. It is a craving for holiness of life. It’s a loathing of sin. It’s finding pleasure in prayer. It can’t be “worked up!” God is the One who grants or withholds revival. But, He has given a very simple (yet costly) means to experience revival. Let James explain: “Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you. Cleanse (your) hands, (ye) sinners; and purify (your) hearts, (ye) double minded.” (James 4:8). Here is a promise and an obligation. How does one draw nigh to God? We hope to consider that tomorrow, God willing. However, let me stress that (if we really want it) revival can be experienced. May our hearts’ response be that expressed in the hymn, “All to Jesus, I Surrender,” – by Judson W. Van De Venter: “All to Jesus I surrender, humbly at His feet I bow; worldly pleasures all forsaken, take me, Jesus, take me now. I surrender all, I surrender all. All to Thee, my blessed Savior, I surrender all.” Selah! If Jesus is truly our Lord and Savior, let us draw nigh to God without ever stopping. He will draw nigh to us; we’ll know revival!   Ron

Questions? E-mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

When the Line is Blocked

Do you ever have times when it seems that your prayers go no higher than the ceiling? Probably we all do. Sometimes, it may be just a “feeling” and your prayer is, in fact, heard. Other times, our prayers are not heard. Of course, the most common cause of not being heard is when we don’t know Jesus as Lord and Savior. God may sometimes hear the prayer of an unsaved person, if it would move them toward the cross. (He has guaranteed to hear the sincere prayer to receive Jesus). However, there are times when He will not listen to His children. The Psalmist reveals one cause of the “prayer line” being blocked: “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear (me). ” (Psalm 66:18). James offers another reason: “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume (it) upon your lusts” (James 4:3). What does a child of God do when the line of communication with God is blocked? He believes what I John 1:9 says and he does what it tells Him to do. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us (our) sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” It is true that all sin(s) is/are forgiven at salvation. This has to do with relationship. When a child of God sins, the fellowship ceases, the line is blocked! Confess (admit), stop, and fellowship is restored and the line is unblocked. Charles Albert Tindley’s hymn “Nothing Between,” offers what every Christian needs to determine not to allow to happen. His commitment is that there will be: “Nothing between my soul and my Savior, naught of this world’s delusive dream; I have renounced all sinful pleasure; Jesus is mine, there’s nothing between. Nothing between my soul and my Savior, so that His blessed face may be seen; nothing preventing the least of His favor; keep the way clear! Let nothing between.” Selah! Holy lives keep the line available for instant contact.  Ron​

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

Prayer is Not a Blank Check!

Some of God’s prayer promises seem to be unconditional. For example: “And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you.” (From Luke 9:9). But this is only part of the picture. I john 5:14-15 adds to the picture: “….if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us: and if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.” God will not honor prayers that conflict with His will. So, it comes down to this: our Heavenly Father knows best! Jesus makes a very important point in Luke 11:11-12. This is how He put it: “If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if (he ask) a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?” God, Who perfectly knows best, will not give what will hurt us (except sometimes to teach us a lesson and ultimately help us). “Away with Doubt, Away with Fear,” a hymn by C. Austin Miles includes these stanzas that give us a balanced perspective on prayer: “Away with doubt, away with fear, I know that God is always near; I lay on Him my ev’ry care, for He answers ev’ry pray’r. The billows high around me roll, in His own hand He keeps my soul; in Him I trust, no matter where, for He answers ev’ry pray’r. Let storm-clouds roll above my head, they’re filled with blessings He will shed; I’ll have for these no anxious care, for He answers ev’ry pray’r. He answers ev’ry pray’r, to some He says “Yes,” to others “No,” to some He says “Stay,” to others “Go,” in His own time and way, I know He answers ev’ry pray’r.” Selah! For those who know Jesus as Lord and Savior, God sometimes says no, sometimes yes, and sometimes wait. For those who do not know Him, the one prayer He guarantees to answer “Yes!” is the sincere prayer to receive Jesus as Lord and Savior.   Ron

 Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com