ZADOK PUBLICATIONS MONTHLY NEWSLETTER
The Ground Rules
March 1, 2015
Promises which are for
These chapters are a continuation of "Comfort Ye My People." They represent a bank of promises that clearly are some of the greatest in the Old Testament. These verses are directed to all Israel, not just the Southern Kingdom. They are given primarily to a people who have become unfamiliar with the intimate love God has for them. Over and again, the strain, "Fear not," appears in cadence with each gift and promise of His care. The tone of these passages is clearly that of a Father talking to His children, explaining to them why He has dealt with them harshly and corrected them severely. These are words of encouragement and they are spoken with tenderness.
Personally, I believe these verses are given universally to those who are in Covenant Relationship with the Most High. These are Covenant Promises, not an exclusive Word to ancient Israel. Whether one is reading from the point of view of the Old Testament Covenant of Blood or from the New Testament Covenant IN HIS BLOOD-these promises surround "His People." How beautiful those words sound, "My People." Possession and total care is promised to His children resting in His care.
Reminiscent of John 10:10 are the Isaiah passages, where God is the Master Shepherd calling His Sheep. Jesus said He was the Good Shepherd; we hear His Voice and obey Him only; He calls us by Name and leads us out. These passages are shepherd talk. The following passages in Isaiah are "Shepherd talk." as well.
The Precious Ones who are "His people."
The depth of love expressed in the highlighted promises (below) is significant. They resound through the ages and are embraced by every generation as a part of their heritage in Him.
Think of it.
What more could He add to these opening lines? Verses 1-4 seem to cover it all, but in them He moves far beyond a protective cover into an encompassing love commitment.
It is "the Father-Creator" who is speaking and outlining some "when" situations for His children. Notice these are not "if" experiences; these are occurrences that will be encountered in life. Deep waters and great trouble, rivers of difficulty along with walking through the fire of oppression are certainties. However, there are greater certainties to be found in His Presence and delivering power. Yes! These comforting assurances need to be sounded from pulpits and from prophecy meetings worldwide. This is THE MESSAGE to the body of true believers in 2015.
43:1 But now the Lord who created you, O Israel, says, 'Don't be afraid, for I have ransomed you; I have called you by name; you are mine. 2 When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up--the flames will not consume you. 3 For I am the Lord your God, your Savior, the Holy One of Israel. I gave Egypt and Ethiopia and Seba [to Cyrus] in exchange for your freedom, as your ransom. 4 Others died that you might live; I traded their lives for yours because you are precious to me and honored, and I love you.
Notice: God "ransomed" His people. He traded Egypt, Ethiopia and Sheba for them. Some died as substitutes for their ransom! Why, because "YOU ARE PRECIOUS TO ME AND HONORED and I LOVE YOU." This is God's evaluation of His people (We humans hold on to the things that are precious to us. We cherish the precious. We adulate the precious. We protect the precious. Think of how much more so with the Lord, who has deemed us PRECIOUS!).
The spirit of fear.
God's first admonition is, "Don't be AFRAID." This is not a suggestion; it is a commandment. It is an assurance to be heeded in conjunction with His provision. How many are the times we have been challenged to remember this word? Right in the middle of calamity, when it looks like disaster, we hear His voice saying, "Be not afraid."
I have purposefully set BOLD type in this set of Scriptures to show what He thinks of His people. Ponder for a moment and ask yourself, "Do I really fathom how much He loves me?"
"To what extent has He been willing to go to express His love?"
Our self-appraisals tend to belie our wrongful estimate of our estate in Him. We sell ourselves short when we consider our value. Oh, that we could understand these first four verses; they would change our prayers. They would alter our life approaches and our walk with Him. He desires for us to know Him on the love level.
(NOTE: Amy Carmichael [1867-1951], understood the commitment of His love and established three principles of prayer.
l. We don't need to explain to our Father things that are known to him.
2. We don't need to press Him, as if we had to deal with an unwilling God.
3. We don't need to suggest to Him what to do, for He Himself knows what to do. )*
Continue now into the next section of this chapter.
*Wiersbe, Warren W. , 10 People Every Christian Should Know, Baker Books, 2011,Kindle edition (it was intially offered free and is a great book to have).
(Note: if God thought such declarations were needed to be emphasized for Isaiah's day, what of our day?)
I have italicized the Scripture portion, where God reveals Himself more fully. Is it possible that He, once again, needs to re-introduce Himself to His people? (Answer, Yes!) The whole spectrum of Christendom is a bit chaotic currently and needs re-alignment with the God of power and supply.
Since fear is the perversion of faith, it is often the first reaction of His people when confronted with hostile situations. Whether it is invading armies or huge national challenges to one's livelihood, these concerns, in the past, were met with fear. It is time for us to make a decision about our fear response. So, for the second time, God says, "Don't be afraid, for I am with you." In other words, let Me have your fear.
5 "Don't be afraid, for I am with you. I will gather you from east and west, 6 from north and south. I will bring my sons and daughters back to Israel from the farthest corners of the earth. 7 All who claim me as their God will come, for I have made them for my glory; I created them. 8 Bring them back to me--blind as they are and deaf when I call (although they see and hear!)."
The Lord then addresses His children ("My sons and daughters" [using a qualifier], "all who claim Me as their God.") He promises they will be gathered from the four corners of the earth to be brought back to the Promised Land. We see Him addressing total Israel (no more northern and southern divisions). We see a promise to His covenant people, who were made for His glory. They are to receive this promise though they have been blind and deaf spiritually.
The nations where His people have been scattered were pagan and full of idolatry. His own children had incorporated some of these forms of darkness and needed a cleansing.
(The Lord is judging the religion of the nations in the verses above, even as He judged Babylon in subsequent verses.)
9 Gather the nations together! Which of all their idols ever has foretold such things? Which can predict a single day ahead? Where are the witnesses of anything they said? If there are no witnesses, then they must confess that only God can prophesy.
These nations were rife with idols and had mistreated God's people, so the Great God is about to "show off." He asks the universal question: "Where are those who can testify that their pagan 'deities' measure up to the true and living God?" Which of the nations received revelation through their pagan deities? None!
Telling the future belongs to Jehovah alone. He alone gives the Spirit of Prophecy (which we are told not to despise, for Revelation 19:10 says, "The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.").God's children are to be His witnesses.
In a day when Islam is parading--someone needs to hear what God says. They have no viable witness, but God has many. "You are my witnesses and my servants, chosen to know and to believe me and to understand that I alone am God."
10 "But I have witnesses, O Israel," says the Lord! "You are My witnesses and My servants, chosen to know and to believe me and to understand that I alone am God. There is no other God; there never was and never will be. 11 I am the Lord, and there is no other Savior. 12 Whenever you have thrown away your idols, I have shown you my power. With one word I have saved you. You have seen me do it; you are my witnesses that it is true. 13 From eternity to eternity I am God. No one can oppose what I do."
Look at what is said, "Chosen servants who believe." This should describe every believer in Jesus Christ. The last words of our Lord Jesus to His disciples were about being "witnesses."
Look at these passages in Acts, where the Disciples carried out His command.
'It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. 8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.'
The end-time witness to the world is to be one message: "He alone is God and there is no other."
Let the Western world observe. Whenever Israel divested its idols, God acted in their behalf.
(With a single word He saved them: Jesus!) When He speaks-that's it! When we use His Name, that's it!
And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom they killed by hanging on a tree. 40 Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly, 41 not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead. 42 And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead. 43 To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins."
44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word. 45 And those of the circumcision who believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. 46 For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God.
Timeless omnipresence is revealed in the phrase, "eternity to eternity (Isaiah 43:13)." Think of it! Before the worlds were made--He is (A lamb slain before the foundation of the world). Instead of Existentialism's, "Life is simply a question mark between two voids," we hear the Almighty say He is in command throughout the ceaseless cycles of never ending ages (John 3:16).
Look What The Lord Has Done:
In these next set of verses, the Lord gives two illustrations: Babylon/Cyrus and Egypt. Then, He states that as great as these events of His intervention were they are nothing compared to what He is going to do!
1. Babylon/Cyrus: In Daniel 5, we read the "raw" account of a drunken orgy. Babylon was celebrating the one thousandth king giving his allegiance to the throne of that empire, when the hand of God wrote: "Mene, Mene, Tekel Upharsin." They were weighed in the balance scale of God and found wanting. That night, Darius, the Median emperor, killed every leader of the Babylonians and established his authority over the land. Later, Cyrus conquered Darius through God's hand of intervention.
2. Egypt's Folly came in their chase of the Israelites and their defeat in the red sea. Anthropologists have found wheels and chariots in the bottom of that crossing.
7 I called forth the mighty army of Egypt with all its chariots and horses, to lie beneath the waves, dead, their lives snuffed out like candlewicks.
Next, the Lord instructs His children to look forward and not rearward. As great as His deliverance was from Egypt, it is nothing compared with what He is about to do. History has no precedence for what is on the verge of happening.
NOTE: I believe we are on the brink of seeing God intervene in history with such force it will seem all these other times will roll back to insignificance. Pathways through the impossible will open up.
8 'But forget all that--it is nothing compared to what I'm going to do! 19 For I'm going to do a brand new thing. See, I have already begun! Don't you see it?'
Blotting Out Sin:
1. Isaiah 43:19 'I will make a road through the wilderness of the world.'
2. Isaiah 43:20 giving them water in the wilderness, yes, springs in the desert, so that my people, my chosen ones, can be refreshed.
3.Isaiah 43:21 'I have made Israel for myself, and these My people will someday honor me before the world.'
Listen to the heart of the Lord God.
Note: Hearken! When the anointing has left the pulpit and destruction lies at the door, we
cannot plead ignorance before this word.'
'O my people, you won't ask my help; you have grown tired of me!'
Verse 23 indicates Israel ceased to carry out the Law and had stopped worshipping Him.
'No, you have presented me only with sins and wearied me with all your faults.'
' I alone am he who blots away your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again. 26 Oh, remind me of this promise of forgiveness, for we must talk about your sins. Plead your case for my forgiving you. 27 From the very first your ancestors sinned against me--all your forebears transgressed my law. 28 That is why I have deposed your priests and destroyed Israel, leaving her to shame.
"Blotting out sin and remembering them no more" is the Father's response. Why then does He say in verse 26, "Remind me of this promise of forgiveness?" (If they bring up the past and want to discuss it, God is willing, but He isn't bringing it up.)
The backdrop behind this conversation is, Forgiveness. God wants them to see their sin-pattern up to now, for He is about to blot out all of it. Their forefathers transgressed His law, so it was "in their DNA." But, one can't blame grandpa for one's own sins. God, in essence, silences the issue. (Someone has said their method of counseling has changed to : Confess it, Quit it, Move on.)
Isaiah 44 : Move On!
Moving on requires a fresh plan and a floor for all future considerations. First and foremost is the mandate to, "Stop being afraid," for He declares it three times in 8 verses. If God says it, "Believe it."
Listen to me, O my servant Israel, O my chosen ones:
2 'The Lord who made you, who will help you, says, O servant of mine, don't be afraid. O Jerusalem, my chosen ones, don't be afraid. 3 For I will give you abundant water for your thirst and for your parched fields. And I will pour out my Spirit and my blessings on your children. 4 They shall thrive like watered grass, like willows on a riverbank.
5. They shall proudly say, 'I am the Lord's,' or, "I am of Jacob," and write upon their hands the name of God or the honored name of Israel.'
6 'The Lord, the King of Israel, says--yes, it is Israel's Redeemer, the Lord Almighty, who says it--I am the First and Last; there is no other God. 7 Who else can tell you what is going to happen in the days ahead? Let them tell you if they can and prove their power. Let them do as I have done since ancient times. 8 Don't, don't be afraid. Haven't I proclaimed from ages past [that I would save you]? You are my witnesses--is there any other God? No! None that I know about! There is no other Rock!'
In these passages, God closes the door on fear by declaring Who He is. (A friend of mine is writing a treatise about "Who's Who." He says that before much can be accomplished in one's walk with God, it is necessary to establish His person versus Our person. "Who's Who" must precede "What's what.")
God say's "Who I am" is Alpha and Omega (He is the first and the last and everything in between). He is able to perform what He says.
NOTE: There is fear in the land and it is growing in the West. The Lord's people must be told again, "Don't participate in fear." We are of a different kingdom and our source and origin is not of this world. Our fearless countenance must be seen by the world if we are to be witnesses for the Mighty God.
O' There really is no other Rock. The stability of our confession is based on His foundation-we are His house built upon Him.
Verses 9-20 can be summed as, "Dealing with 'Idol' exposure." For those who do not have the Living Bible, I will copy this portion for you. It is self-explanatory. Read through it quickly and realize Israel did not know how deeply the pagan culture had infected them. Here, in the West, with bombardment of media, we too might need to re-examine the level of cultural infection in our own lives.
9 What fools they are who manufacture idols for their gods. Their hopes remain unanswered. They themselves are witnesses that this is so, for their idols neither see nor know. No wonder those who worship them are so ashamed. 10 Who but a fool would make his own god--an idol that can help him not one whit! 11 All that worship these will stand before the Lord in shame, along with all these carpenters--mere men-who claim that they have made a god. Together they will stand in terror. 12 The metal-smith stands at his forge to make an axe, pounding on it with all his might. He grows hungry and thirsty, weak and faint. 13 Then the woodcarver takes the axe and uses it to make an idol. He measures and marks out a block of wood and carves the figure of a man. Now he has a wonderful idol that can't so much as move from where it is placed. 14 He cuts down cedars, he selects the cypress and the oak, he plants the ash in the forest to be nourished by the rain. 15 And after his care, he uses part of the wood to make a fire to warm himself and bake his bread, and then-he really does-he takes the rest of it and makes himself a god-a god for men to worship! An idol to fall down before and praise! 16 Part of the tree he burns to roast his meat and to keep him warm and fed and well content, 17 and with what's left he makes his god: a carved idol! He falls down before it and worships it and prays to it. "Deliver me," he says. "You are my god!"
18 Such stupidity and ignorance! God has shut their eyes so that they cannot see and closed their minds from understanding. 19 The man never stops to think or figure out, "Why, it's just a block of wood! I've burned it for heat and used it to bake my bread and roast my meat. How can the rest of it be a god? Should I fall down before a chunk of wood?" 20 The poor, deluded fool feeds on ashes; he is trusting what can never give him any help at all. Yet he cannot bring himself to ask, "Is this thing, this idol that I'm holding in my hand, a lie?"
The spiritual implication for this last sentence is enormous. Religious icons could be "popular belief," multitudes might be believing a lie!
The Gospel Message:
The Song of Deliverance:
'Pay attention, Israel, for you are my servant; I made you, and I will not forget to help you. 22 I've blotted out your sins; they are gone like morning mist at noon! Oh, return to me, for I have paid the price to set you free.'
The God of Prophecy
3 Sing, O heavens, for the Lord has done this wondrous thing. Shout, O earth; break forth into song, O mountains and forests, yes, and every tree; for the Lord redeemed Jacob and is glorified in Israel! 24 The Lord, your Redeemer who made you, says, "All things were made by me; I alone stretched out the heavens. By myself I made the earth and everything in it."
Remember a few pages back, when the Lord declared He was the God of prophecy (Isaiah 43:9)? Under this authority, He gives a salient view as to His response to false prophets.
Christendom is not without prophets in the Twenty-first Century, but the litmus remains, "Does what they proclaim come to pass?" True prophets have God backing them up. Remember what Jesus said, "I only say what I hear My Father say." What He says will surely come to pass.
'I am the one who shows what liars all false prophets are, by causing something else to happen than the things they say. I make wise men give opposite advice to what they should and make them into fools. 26 But what my prophets say, I do; when they say Jerusalem will be delivered and the cities of Judah lived in once again--it shall be done! 27 When I speak to the rivers and say, 'Be dry!' they shall be dry. 28 When I say of Cyrus, 'He is my shepherd,' he will certainly do as I say; and Jerusalem will be rebuilt and the Temple restored, for I have spoken it."
The theme of these three chapters is Cyrus's Divine appointment to liberate Israel from the hands of the Babylonians. The repetition of God's favor in his behalf is central, along with the futility of pagan idols, and His blessings on His people. Interspersed among these verses are some very important passages specific to God's people and how much The Father cares for them.
In the following passages, I deemed it necessary to separate the Scriptures into sections, as they relate to various persons or groups. The conclusion of this discussion is a grouping focused on self-description from the Lord. He builds a foundation to be used starting with these chapters forward. Don't glide over these passages. Keep in mind to whom they are directed. Marvel at His opinion of Israel, while yet saying: "I love you." As you read through each of the passages, I have underlined and bold faced several areas of consideration. Isaiah 45-48 blossoms when viewed in the manner of display used here.
Promises to Cyrus:
Promises to Babylon: soon to be conquered:
l. Isa. 45:1 This is Jehovah's message to Cyrus, God's anointed.
2. Isa. 45:1-3 'whom he has chosen to conquer many lands. God shall empower his right hand, and he shall crush the strength of mighty kings. God shall open the gates of Babylon to him; the gates shall not be shut against him any more. 2 "I will go before you, Cyrus, and level the mountains and smash down the city gates of brass and iron bars. 3 And I will give you treasures hidden in the darkness, secret riches; and you will know that I am doing this--I, the Lord, the God of Israel, the one who calls you by your name."'
3. Isa 45:4 'And why have I named you for this work? For the sake of Jacob, My servant-Israel, My chosen. I called you by name when you didn't know Me.'
4. Isa 45:13 13 I have raised up Cyrus to fulfill My righteous purpose, and I will direct all his paths. He shall restore My city and free My captive people--and not for a reward!"
5. Isa 46:1 'The idols of Babylon, Bel and Nebo, are being hauled away on ox carts! But look! The beasts are stumbling! The cart is turning over! The gods are falling out onto the ground! Is that the best that they can do? If they cannot even save themselves from such a fall, how can they save their worshipers from Cyrus?'
6. Isa 46:11 'I will call that swift bird of prey from the east--that man Cyrus from far away. And he will come and do my bidding. I have said I would do it and I will.'
7. Isa 48:14-15 'The Lord loves Cyrus. He will use him to put an end to the empire of Babylonia. He will utterly rout the armies of the Chaldeans'? 15 But I am saying it. I have called Cyrus; I have sent him on this errand, and I will prosper him.'
Promises to The People of God:
1. Isa 47:1-3 'O Babylon, the unconquered, come sit in the dust; for your days of glory, pomp, and honor are ended. O daughter of Chaldea, never again will you be the lovely princess, tender and delicate. 2 Take heavy millstones and grind the corn; remove your veil; strip off your robe; expose yourself to public view. 3 You shall be in nakedness and shame. I will take vengeance upon you and will not repent.'
(The Babylonian system of providing by government man's every self- interested
need will perish. Ancient Babylon (Iraq) has a curse upon it.)
2. Isa 47:5-11 'Sit in darkness and silence, O Babylon; never again will you be called "The Queen of Kingdoms." 6 For I was angry with My people Israel and began to punish them a little by letting them fall into your hands, O Babylon. But you showed them no mercy. You have made even the old folks carry heavy burdens. 7 You thought your reign would never end, Queen Kingdom of the world. You didn't care a whit about My people or think about the fate of those who do them harm.'
8 'O pleasure-mad kingdom, living at ease, bragging as the greatest in the world--listen to the sentence of My court upon your sins. You say, "I alone am God! I'll never be a widow; I'll never lose My children." 9 Well, those two things shall come upon you in one moment, in full measure in one day: widowhood and the loss of your children, despite all your witchcraft and magic..
'You felt secure in all your wickedness. "No one sees me," you said. Your "wisdom" and "knowledge" have caused you to turn away from Me and claim that you yourself are Jehovah. 11 That is why disaster shall overtake you suddenly-so suddenly that you won't know where it comes from. And there will be no atonement then to cleanse away your sins.'
'Call out the demon hordes you've worshiped all these years. Call on them to help you strike deep terror into many hearts again. 13 You have advisors by the ton--your astrologers and stargazers, who try to tell you what the future holds. 14 But they are as useless as dried grass burning in the fire. They cannot even deliver themselves! You'll get no help from them at all. Theirs is no fire to sit beside to make you warm! 15 And all your friends of childhood days shall slip away and disappear, unable to help.'
Promises to Idols:
1. Isa. 45:17 Israel shall be saved by Jehovah with eternal salvation; they shall never be disappointed in their God through all eternity
2. Isa. 45:25 In Jehovah all the generations of Israel shall be justified, triumphant.
3. Isa. 46:3-4 'Listen to Me, all Israel who are left; I have created you and cared for you since you were born. 4 I will be your God through all your lifetime, yes, even when your hair is white with age. I made you and I will care for you. I will carry you along and be your Savior.' ... 12 Listen to Me, you stubborn, evil men! 13 For I am offering you My deliverance; not in the distant future, but right now! I am ready to save you, and I will restore Jerusalem and Israel, who is My glory.
4. Isa. 47:4 'So speaks our Redeemer, who will save Israel from Babylon's mighty power; the Lord Almighty is His name, the Holy One of Israel.'
5. Isa. 48:1-7 'Hear me, My people: you swear allegiance to the Lord without meaning a word of it when you boast of living in the Holy City and brag about depending on the God of Israel. 3 Time and again I told you what was going to happen in the future. My words were scarcely spoken when suddenly I did just what I said. 4 I knew how hard and obstinate you are. Your necks are as unbending as iron; you are as hardheaded as brass. 5 That is why I told you ahead of time what I was going to do, so that you could never say, "My idol did it; my carved image commanded it to happen!" 6 You have heard My predictions and seen them fulfilled, but you refuse to agree it is so. Now I will tell
you new things I haven't mentioned before, secrets you haven't heard.'
'Then you can't say, "We knew that all the time!"'
6. Isa 48:8-11 'I know so well what traitors you are, rebels from earliest childhood, rotten through and through. 9 Yet for My own sake and for the honor of My Name I will hold back My anger and not wipe you out. 10 I refined you in the furnace of affliction, but found no silver there. You are worthless, with nothing good in you at all. 11 Yet for My own sake--yes, for My own sake--I will save you from My anger and not destroy you lest the heathen say their gods have conquered Me. I will not let them have My glory.'
7. Isa 48:17-49:1 The Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, says, 'I am the Lord your God, who punishes you for your own good and leads you along the paths that you should follow.'
'Oh, that you had listened to My laws! Then you would have had peace flowing like a gentle river, and great waves of righteousness. Then you would have become as numerous as the sands along the seashores of the world, too many to count, and there would have been no need for your destruction.'
Yet even now, be free from your captivity! Leave Babylon, singing as you go; shout to the ends of the earth that the Lord has redeemed his servants, the Jews. 21 They were not thirsty when He led them through the deserts; He divided the rock, and water gushed out for them to drink.
'But there is no peace,' says the Lord, 'for the wicked.'
Revelation of the True God:
1. Isa 45:15-16 Truly, O God of Israel, Savior, You work in strange, mysterious ways. 16 All who worship idols shall be disappointed and ashamed.
2. Isa 45:20-21 'What fools they are who carry around the wooden idols and pray to gods that cannot save! 21 Consult together, argue your case and state your proofs that idol- worship pays!'
3. Isa 46:1 'The idols of Babylon, Bel and Nebo, are being hauled away on ox carts! But look! The beasts are stumbling! The cart is turning over! The gods are falling out onto the ground! Is that the best that they can do? If they cannot even save themselves from such a fall, how can they save their worshipers from Cyrus?'
4. Isa 46:6ff 'Will you compare Me with an idol made lavishly with silver and with gold? They hire a goldsmith to take your wealth and make a god from it! Then they fall down and worship it! 7 They carry it around on their shoulders, and when they set it down, it stays there, for it cannot move! And when someone prays to it, there is no answer, for it cannot get him out of his trouble.'
May this study bear fruit in the many study groups using it.
1. Isa 45:5 'I am Jehovah; there is no other God.'
2. Isa 45:6-8 'I am Jehovah and there is no one else. I alone am God. 7 I form the light and make the dark. I send good times and bad. I, Jehovah, am He who does these things. Open up, O heavens. Let the skies pour out their righteousness. Let salvation and righteousness sprout up together from the earth. I, Jehovah, created them.'
3. Isa 45:9-12 'Woe to the man who fights with his Creator. Does the pot argue with its maker? Does the clay dispute with him who forms it, saying, "Stop, you're doing it wrong!" or the pot exclaim, "How clumsy can you be?" 10 Woe to the baby just being born who squalls to his father and mother, "Why have you produced me? Can't you do anything right at all?"' Jehovah, the Holy One of Israel, Israel's Creator, says: "What right have you to question what I do? Who are you to command me concerning the work of My hands?" 12 I have made the earth and created man upon it. With My hands I have stretched out the heavens and commanded all the vast myriads of stars."'
4. Isa 45:18-19 For Jehovah created the heavens and earth and put everything in place, and he made the world to be lived in, not to be an empty chaos. "I am Jehovah," He says, "and there is no other! 19 I publicly proclaim bold promises; I do not whisper obscurities in some dark corner so that no one can know what I mean. And I didn't tell Israel to ask Me for what I didn't plan to give! No, for I, Jehovah, speak only truth and righteousness."
5. Isa 45:21-23 'For there is no other God but Me--a just God and a Savior--no, not one! Let all the world look to Me for salvation! For I am God; there is no other. 23 I have sworn by Myself, and I will never go back on My word, for it is true-that every knee in the entire world shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall swear allegiance to My name.'
6. Isa 46:5 'With what in all of heaven and earth do I compare? Whom can you find who equals Me?'
7. Isa 46:8-10 'Don't forget this, O guilty ones. 9 And don't forget the many times I clearly told you what was going to happen in the future. For I am God--I only--and there is no other like Me 10 who can tell you what is going to happen. All I say will come to pass, for I do whatever I wish.'
8. Isa 48:12-13 'Listen to Me, My people, My chosen ones! I alone am God. I am the First; I am the Last. 13 It was My hand that laid the foundations of the earth; the palm of My right hand spread out the heavens above; I spoke and they came into being.'
Until next month,
Dr. Cosby R. Oliver, PhD.
From the Mailbag:
Instead of mailbag offerings this month, we feature an article written by Bro. Brian Troxel of Canada. He is a colleague of mine and a resourceful writer. Enjoy what he has written and take it to heart.He may be reached at his email address - firstname.lastname@example.org
"And even when I am old and grayheaded,
O God, do not leave me
until I declare Your arm to this generation,
Your power to everyone who is to come."
To those that know Him life has but one overriding purpose... to declare His power and glory. Age and infirmities do not preclude this one thing. We live to speak and declare Him. We live to honor Him with all that is within us. For He has redeemed us, He has girded us with strength in the times of trouble, He has lifted our soul from the ways of this world and He has given us the very LIFE of His Son. How can we not declare Him to all who would hear?
Faith does not grow old nor is it dependent upon the natural strength of man. Its vitality and power, like a fine wine, develops with age and, by testing and trial grows more precious with the passing of time.
"In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while,
if need be, you have been grieved by various trials,
that the genuineness of your faith,
being much more precious than gold that perishes,
though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor,
and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ"
1 PETER 1:6-7
Genuine faith ever lives to glorify God. It is never static or cold. It is the very breath and life of those who love God. Faith is the fuel that enables men to walk godly in this present world. Faith is the fire that keeps a man's heart aflame in the midst of a lukewarm church. It is the gift of the Almighty that enables us to remain strong and vibrant in God.
"But you, beloved,
building yourselves up by your most holy faith,
praying in the Holy Spirit..."
Men of Faith are always concerned about the next generation. They are passionate to share the fervor and the authenticity of His power to those who follow after; to declare HIS ARM to the succeeding generation. They cannot rest until the Glory of the Lord truly fills the whole earth with righteousness.
Even so Lord, do not leave us until we have finished our purpose to this generation.
"O God, do not leave me
UNTIL I declare Your arm to this generation,
Your power to everyone who is to come"
Instead of foreign Missions this month, we feature Bro. Nickie Pinson's labor of love in building a regional center, near Sulphur Springs, Texas. He explains his work in a recent UPDATE and we share this with our readers. (Nickie sold his personal home and is totally invested in this effort…that is his dedication.) By the way, Ms. Betty Oliver prophesied over this work last year and it is being fulfilled. Praise the Lord!
Bread From His Table
Psalms 23:5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:
The purpose of this material is to deal with the heart. All past posts of 'Bread From His Table' plus free worship music and sermons can be found at www.recoveringthechurch.org
Also watch the message each Sunday morning live at 11 am Central Time from our web site.
UPDATE FEBRUARY 2015
Nine of the ten heirs to the property we have been trying to buy for several years have now returned their signatures for the transfer of the property. We have collected $3200 of the $7200 price.
We have cleaned off the concrete slab where our wood shop once stood (it burned down about three years ago). We are intending to build a barn on this slab, as the Lord is leading us to raise our own food for this ministry. We also hope to eventually go off the 'grid'. These projects will be important in the near future.
The shower rooms for the Bunk House have been framed up and the roof is in place. Inside the Bunk House we have finished the lunch room, the kitchen, the lobby, and the bath rooms are close to completion, the pantry still is to be built, and the two large dorm rooms are in the process of being prepared.
The pond behind the Shiloh House can provide fish for food and also be used to irrigate the large garden and orchard.
The Shiloh House is for families, and the Bunk House is for individuals to be housed in. Two weeks ago we took in a mother and her two young daughters in the Shiloh House. We are expecting more shortly to come for shelter and food. While meeting physical needs, we will also meet their spiritual needs.
The property we are buying.
Clearing off the concrete slab.
Shower rooms have been framed in and the roof installed on the Bunk House.
The pond behind the Shiloh House.
Working on a Bunk House dorm room.
Proverbs 10:22 The blessing of the LORD makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it.
If you have questions or comments I am available to correspond via email or regular mail, and I will respond as soon as I can. Thanks to those of you that help pray for and support this work!
DR. OLIVER'S BOOKS ARE NOW AVAILABLE FOR THE KINDLE ON AMAZON.COM AND FOR THE NOOK AT BARNES & NOBLE!
Because of high demand from our ebook readers, Dr. Oliver's books are being added to the e-reader online stores.
In addition, there is one book has been added as an "e-book only", Double Grace.
Here is an excerpt from the Forward:
This book contains explosive knowledge about Grace. Readers will find themselves engrossed in the vastness of God's Grace explored in its pages. Also, those who complete the study will be equipped to define and defend their views on the subject.
Double Grace is available from Amazon.com HERE.
There is currently an attack on Grace. There is a concerted assault on the use and meaning of Grace in religious circles around the world. It is a devilish attempt to cloud the mind of Christians and contradict the word of God. The method of attack is to redefine Grace and to misapply it in almost every aspect of its original intent and application.
Those who oppose this assault movement have defined it as "hyper grace." Hyper grace relies upon forgiveness without repentance and offers a "free pass" for sin. It approximates the indulgence sales of the Middle Ages perpetrated by a corrupt Catholic Church. It offers its recipients pacification for themselves in the arena of responsibility. In essence, it declares that all sin has been abolished by the work of Christ and therefore Christians have no need to repent of sin or stand for correction. License is given for self pursuits into worldliness that contravenes biblical teachings.
This study acts as a defense of the true doctrine of Grace. It refines one's understanding of the nature of Grace upon entering the human heart and its intent to bring the person from where they are in their spiritual life to the 'stature of Christ.' True Grace restores; it acts much like the grace extended to the Prodigal son. Grace is interactive, in that it constantly connects one to the will of the Father. Grace is not static, like something received once for all. Grace is dynamic, in that it follows the prescription of the Holy Spirit.
Scriptures forming the true doctrine of Grace span both OT and NT and are linked inexorably with the teachings of Jesus and Paul. The golden thread of Grace can be seen in all spiritual transactions, because fallen man must rely upon it for life and salvation. It sustains the believer and carries him or her away from impurity across to purity and ultimately deliverance.
As this is the most exciting of subjects, the reader will do well to drink deep from the wellspring of this survey. Those who have coursed its pages in advance have declared them to be life changing.
Paperback volumes may still be ordered through our website.
To see the currently available books from Amazon, click on the cover images below.
To see the currently available books from Barnes & Noble, click on the cover images below.
Ministry contact information!
P.O. Box 132874
The Woodlands, Texas 77393
On The Web: ZadokPublications.com