John 4:7 (KJV) When Christ Asks

John 4:7 (KJV)
There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.

I note first that Jesus asked.
What is He asking of you?

I note secondly that He asked an as yet unconverted sinner.
The responsibilities of faith extend to all, not just those who have been born again.

I note thirdly that Jesus asked for a material and human need.
What humility that God took upon Himself the need of man.

Concerning this request I have these observations:
He could have satisfied His thirst through His divinity.
Bring God He had no true need for water. His thirst, though real, was voluntary. He could have chosen to not submit to this human necessity.

He could have drawn the water Himself.
He was physically capable and, though perhaps culturally it was appropriate to ask a woman, it was not unheard of that a man draw his own drink.

He could have waited for His disciples
They were, after all, in the town procuring other physical needs. They would no doubt have been happy to draw Him water.

When Christ asks a thing from us we ought to view it as a learning moment. He does not need what He asks for. He is capable of getting it Himself if He so chooses. He has others who are anxious to minister to His needs. But He asks us. Let us faithfully draw for Him.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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John 4:7 (KJV) When Christ Asks

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John 3:12 (KJV) How Can He Believe?

John 3:12 (KJV)
If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?

It is possible to divide John 3:1-21 at the line of verse twelve. Everything Jesus taught previous to this verse would then be classified “earthly things” and everything after would be “heavenly”. Notice then what are:

Earthly things

The subject of teaching is the new birth. It is the one earthly thing that provides entrance to the heavenly. The style of teaching is through earthly parables:

  • Wind
  • Trees (the sound of the wind through it?)
  • Physical birth

A parable is an earthly story with a heavenly meaning.

If a man will not accept Christ’s message of salvation it is impossible for him to understand anything else He teaches.

Heavenly things

The subject changes to the elements of the Gospel:

  • God with us
  • The death burial and resurrection
  • The heart of God for sinners
  • The ultimate condemnation of rejecters

A man must be born again. If he rejects that basic doctrine he will never understand the doctrines underlying it.

 

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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John 3:12 (KJV) How Can He Believe?

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John 2:22 (KJV) One and the Same

John 2:22 (KJV)
When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.

The Gospel According to John was written very nearly one hundred years after the birth of Christ. It is obvious as John includes a comment in this account of an event early in Christ’s ministry having to do with the disciples’ reaction at the end of His earthly ministry. When Jesus was resurrected they remembered the Scriptures prophesying His death burial and resurrection and they remembered His own words having to do with the same.

I believe the point is to tie the two things they remembered and believed together. The Scriptures and the words of Christ are one and the same. Something that is the same is not different.

The Scripture is not higher than the word of Christ nor is visa-versa.

  • The Scripture is not more inspired
  • The Scripture is not more accurate
  • The Scripture is not more believable

than the word of Christ. Nor is the word of Christ superior the Scripture. They are one and the same.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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John 2:22 (KJV) One and the Same

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2 Kings 21:1-2 (KJV) The Will of God We Ought to Seek

2 Kings 21:1-2 (KJV)
Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign, and reigned fifty and five years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Hephzibah.
And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, after the abominations of the heathen, whom the LORD cast out before the children of Israel.

Mannaseh must have been born three years after his father prayed for and received fifteen more years. If Hezekiah had died when Isaiah originally pronounced it, Manasseh would never have been born. We can never know who would then have been the next king or if he would have been a better king than Manasseh. We do know that Mannaseh was an evil man.

This is one Biblical evidence that it is possible to pray and change what appears to be the will of God. It is also evidence that it is not necessarily the best thing to do.

Though there is a good and acceptable will of God, the one we ought to seek is His perfect will.

 

To my reader:
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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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2 Kings 21:1-2 (KJV) The Will of God We Ought to Seek

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2 Kings 18:5 (KJV) Never Think Much of Self

2 Kings 18:5 (KJV)
He trusted in the LORD God of Israel; so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him.

Few people in the Bible serve to me as a warning more than does Hezekiah. The Biblical account of him is so positive at the first that it is difficult for me to comprehend his end. How does a man with his testimony end up being thankful that his mistakes won’t harm him but his children’s children instead?

Hezekiah reigned in a very difficult time. Though he led the nation to greater obedience than any king since David, he faced the most powerful enemy in his nation’s history. He watched as the northern kingdom of Israel was defeat and decimated by Assyria. Hezekiah faced tough choices as Assyria fixed her attention on Judah. He tried to appease them but that never really works. All that was left was to either surrender to them or resist them. He chose resistance. Pressure mounted as the Assyrians laid siege on Jerusalem. But then God intervened and Assyria was destroyed without Judah having to fight a battle. Hezekiah was overjoyed!

Then came the situation of his health. God told him he was about to die but Hezekiah prayed and God gave him fifteen more years.

I think Hezekiah got puffed up. With such victories in times of such overwhelming circumstances he got his eyes off God and began to think too highly of himself.

That’s the warning. Never think much of self. Even great victories are always about God and not the victor. Keep God as our focus and our perspective of others will stay clear.

To my reader:
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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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2 Kings 18:5 (KJV) Never Think Much of Self

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John 1:13 (KJV) Salvation is of God

John 1:13 (KJV)
Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

The Bible insists that the salvation of a soul is completely performed by God:

Not by blood
At first glance this looks like physical birth but I think it convey much more. The word blood is plural and likely has reference to a number of Jewish traditions:

  • The blood of circumcision a cultural distinction
  • The blood a sacrifice a religious ritual
  • The blood of Abraham a familial ancestry

None of these actually affect the new birth.

Not by the will of the flesh
Salvation is not a choice we make. It does not happen because we decide to follow Jesus.

Not by the will of man
No one can make a man be saved. As much as I might desire salvation for my children, grandchildren or, for that matter, any other person, salvation is not the result of any man’s efforts hard work charisma or position.

Men are born again by the will of God. He planned it. He paid for it. He gave us His Word. He calls men into ministry. He teaches us all to be witnesses. He gave us the Holy Spirit who brings conviction and regeneration.

 

To my reader:
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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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John 1:13 (KJV) Salvation is of God

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Luke 24:5-6 (KJV) Why seek ye the living among the dead?

Luke 24:5-6 (KJV)
And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead?
He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee,

I recognize that Matthew’s account of the exchange between these women and the angel’s includes the words, “Come, see the place where the Lord lay.” Luke’s account omits that phrase and focuses instead on a question, also spoken by the angels, that could almost be viewed as a rebuke; “Why seek ye the living among the dead?”

Jesus was not to be found at the empty tomb. There has been, for more years that I can remember, an interest among believers in the empty tomb in Jerusalem. That interest seems to be growing among those in the circles with whom I fellowship. I do not have the same interest in traveling to Israel for at least these reasons:

The tomb in Jerusalem cannot be proven to be Christ’s
There are in fact two tombs that are claimed as Christ’s. I doubt that either is truly it.

The nation of Israel is not the focus of this era
While I believe we should as a country support Israel I do not believe it is because God’s plan for today is to bless Israel above all others. The focus today ought to be on winning souls of every kindred and organizing them into local Baptist churches.

Christ is not to be found at the empty tomb. He will not be found on the old streets upon which He walked. Christ will be found in the Words of the Bible and it is in those words we are to find our faith and build our relationship with the Lord.

To my reader:
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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Luke 24:5-6 (KJV) Why seek ye the living among the dead?

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Luke 23:11 (KJV) Making Christ Nothing

Luke 23:11 (KJV)
And Herod with his men of war set him at nought, and mocked him, and arrayed him in a gorgeous robe, and sent him again to Pilate.

Herod had, for a long time, wanted to see Jesus perform a miracle. His interview therefore with Jesus was a happy occasion for him. His happiness was soon squelched, however, when Jesus refused to do a miracle or even answer a question. Herod then turned against Christ and “set Him at nought.

The phrase is the interest of my devotions this morning. Strong’s Dictionary says the word means despised or contemptible. Gill says it means they made nothing of Him.

I am afraid our world is filled with “seekers” interested in seeing Christ do a miracle for them or answering the challenging questions for them and, though they may seek for some time, eventually they are “stung with disappointment” and turn against Christ, making Him nothing in their eyes.

Christ is God, the king of the Jews and Saviour of all who believe on Him whether He does any miracles for you or not. He is whom He is whether you get all your questions answered to your own satisfaction or not.

You may turn on Him but it will be to your own doom and in no way will change whom Christ is.

It would be far better to trust Him.

To my reader:
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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Luke 23:11 (KJV) Making Christ Nothing

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Luke 22:27 (KJV) The Issue of Greatness

Luke 22:27 (KJV)
For whether is greater, he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth? is not he that sitteth at meat? but I am among you as he that serveth.

Despite the warning of Christ in this passage the issue of greatness has never been satisfied. Men, in a multitude of camps, strive to be known as the greatest.

Truly the greatest was and is Jesus Christ. Yet if He were to come today in the manner He came two thousand years ago, the spiritual leaders of our generation would want about as little to do with Him as the Pharisees did back then.

Jesus was;

  • Followed by only a hand full
  • Always more concerned for the truth of His message than the reception of His message
  • Despised and rejected and
  • Killed at the urging of the multitudes

Jesus’ own testimony was that His followers would accomplish far more than He did (saving that He alone could take the sins of the whole world).

Greatness is misunderstood today but I expect that it is never found in this life but rather is evidenced by the influence a person has long after they have left this life.

To my reader:
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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Luke 22:27 (KJV) The Issue of Greatness

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2 Kings 16:10-18 (KJV) An Old Testament Type of Transitioning Faith

2 Kings 16:10-18 (KJV)
And king Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglathpileser king of Assyria, and saw an altar that was at Damascus: and king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar, and the pattern of it, according to all the workmanship thereof.
And Urijah the priest built an altar according to all that king Ahaz had sent from Damascus: so Urijah the priest made it against king Ahaz came from Damascus.
And when the king was come from Damascus, the king saw the altar: and the king approached to the altar, and offered thereon.
And he burnt his burnt offering and his meat offering, and poured his drink offering, and sprinkled the blood of his peace offerings, upon the altar.
And he brought also the brasen altar, which was before the LORD, from the forefront of the house, from between the altar and the house of the LORD, and put it on the north side of the altar.
And king Ahaz commanded Urijah the priest, saying, Upon the great altar burn the morning burnt offering, and the evening meat offering, and the king’s burnt sacrifice, and his meat offering, with the burnt offering of all the people of the land, and their meat offering, and their drink offerings; and sprinkle upon it all the blood of the burnt offering, and all the blood of the sacrifice: and the brasen altar shall be for me to enquire by.
Thus did Urijah the priest, according to all that king Ahaz commanded.
And king Ahaz cut off the borders of the bases, and removed the laver from off them; and took down the sea from off the brasen oxen that were under it, and put it upon a pavement of stones.
And the covert for the sabbath that they had built in the house, and the king’s entry without, turned he from the house of the LORD for the king of Assyria.

I once was given a book entitled Transitioning that was meant to lay out in step by step measures how to turn a church from conservative philosophy to modern.  The person who gave the book to me did so to help me recognize when a church is making such a transition and it was not long before I saw a number of churches, including some with whom I had connections, begin the transition.

Transitioning is not, however, a modern problem. Ahaz transitioned Judah thousands of years ago. He used the same facilities Judah had always used for worship and made gradual, in some ways, subtle changes:

He built a new altar to be the centerpiece in the Temple courtyard.
I understand this altar would have been smaller perhaps seeming more functional.

He did not remove the old altar but moved it to a less prominent place.
Transitioning pastors will very often say that they are not really changing things but making things more efficient and functional. Many time they will not completely abandon conservative worship but simply make a new time slot for those who want to continue in the old fashioned services.

He removed the laver
Which was a vessel used to wash prior after the offering and prior to entering the tabernacle.

Transitioning pastors want little to do with sanctification and separation.  Their whole “come as you are” mentality is geared to make the sinner feel good about themselves.

He changed sea for a pavement of stones.
The sea, many believe, represents heaven where God’s throne is seated upon a sea of glass. The stones are more “earthy”.

Transitioning pastors want to make church relevant and practical. They aren’t as concerned about heaven and hell as they are about “your best life now.”

Ahaz was a modern transitioning pastor. The Bible gives us specifically what was God’s opinion of him,

2 Kings 16:2
Twenty years old was Ahaz when he began to reign, and reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem, and did not that which was right in the sight of the LORD his God, like David his father.

 

To my reader:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

 

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

2 Kings 16:10-18 (KJV) An Old Testament Type of Transitioning Faith

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free. Email me for a free one month VIP membership.