“Your words were found and I ate them, And Your word became to me The gladness and joy of my heart, For I am called by Your name, O Jehovah, God of hosts.” Jeremiah 15:16
I really enjoyed the campus Bible studies this week! On Thursday, we read the footnote for John 19:34, and a few paragraphs from the first message from Life-study of Romans.
But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately there came out blood and water.
So, I had read this footnote before, and appreciated that the blood is for redemption, the purchasing of the church, and that the water is for imparting life, for the producing of the church. It’s pretty amazing to see that, to realise that it is not random or even just for biological reasons that both blood and water came out of the Jesus’ side, but that both are so significant. But in our fellowship at the Bible study, I saw in a fresh way that the blood was for the purchasing of the church, and that the water was for the producing of the church.
- Yes, He loved the whole world (John 3:16)
- He died for our sins (1 Corinthians 15:3; Hebrews 9:22)
- He died to terminate everything of the old creation (2 Corinthians 5:17), the old man (Romans 6:6), and the flesh (Galatians 5:24), Satan (Hebrews 2:14), the world (John 12:31), sin (John 3:14), and death (2 Timothy 1:10).
(I enjoyed looking up these verses! I hope you enjoy reading them too. :) Hover over the links to read the verses, and click on the links to go to the footnotes in the Recovery Version!)
But He didn’t do this just for us as individuals, He did this to redeem, to purchase the church, and to produce the church. The church is what is on God’s heart!
So, we also looked at the picture of Adam and Eve, and how Eve was built from a rib out from Adam’s side. Adam and Eve had the same source, the same nature, the same life, and even the same living. We also, as the church, have come out of the Lord’s pierced side, we have His life and His nature, and now we are learning to have one living with Him!
This couple is the secret of the universe. The secret of the whole universe is that God and His chosen ones are to be one couple. Hallelujah! We, God’s chosen ones, and God are of one source, of one nature, and have one life. Now we also need to have one living. We are not living by ourselves or for ourselves; we are living with God and for God, and God is living with us and for us. Hallelujah!Life-study of Romans, message 1
What about us? Is the church also on our heart? I realised that I need to see a fresh vision of the church, to see the church as God sees the church, to love the church as Christ loves the church!
Here is a very sweet song that matches this thought. (You can click on the link below to listen to it and sing along!)
1. Don’t you want to know your God?
What’s hidden in His heart for you?
How much He longs for you to come
And open up—
To let Him in to every part
Let Him reveal what’s on His heart
What was the joy set before Him?
It was for her the church—His bride
It was for her, willingly He died
She is the joy deep in His heart
2. The Lord chose you to be a part
Of His great plan, His work of art.
What wonder! What a privilege!
His yearning to share all He is—
Divine, unsearchable riches!
What wisdom, multifarious expressed!
3. As we enjoy and enter in
To all He is then we’ll begin
To understand the feeling in
His heart toward us.
What love that motivated Him
To come to us, despite our sin
Why did He go and sell all that He had?
Lord Jesus, cause my heart to be a duplication of your heart, that I would see the church as You see the church, and love the church as You love the church.
Along with many others here in the UK, I’ve been starting to get into the book of Romans a little this year. If you’d like to join in, you can find a suggested schedule here.
Having said that, in reading the Life-study of Romans, I’ve been finding it a little difficult to get into it. But this portion today really encouraged me:
The more we look at ourselves and examine ourselves, the faster our faith disappears. Faith is not our invention; it can never be initiated by us. It is impossible for us to generate faith. Faith is an aspect of Christ Himself. In fact, faith is Christ. Galatians 2:20 says that we live by the faith of the Son of God. I do not live by my faith—I have no faith of my own—but by the faith of the Son of the living God who has faith and who Himself is faith to me. If you look at yourself, you will never find faith, but if you forget about yourself and say, “O Lord Jesus, I love You,” faith will immediately rise up within you.
We believe in Christ by His faith, not by our own. Christ is our faith. Never say that you cannot believe, for you can believe if you want to. Do not try to believe by yourself, because the more you try the less faith you have. Simply say, “O Lord Jesus, I love You. Lord Jesus, You are so good.” If you do this, you will have faith immediately.
Life-study of Romans, message 5
Amen, thank You Lord! Faith comes out of hearing, and faith is Christ Himself infused into us!
I really liked this point on “Never say that you cannot believe”, and it matches something else we were enjoying earlier in the week:
Christ is the interceding Spirit who joins in to help us in our weakness as we are groaning (Romans 8:27). We probably don’t think that groaning is a very positive thing. Yet this verse doesn’t say we shouldn’t groan, but rather that the Spirit joins in to help us when we are groaning!
And I was reminded that our groaning is similar to our crying out (listen to message 7 from the Winter Training on the Crystallization-study of Exodus). It’s an opening to the Lord!
So our proper response to realising how much of a failure we are shouldn’t be “I can’t do it and will never do it, so forget about it” or “I don’t have faith, I can never believe”… Instead, we should open, groan, and cry out. “Oh Lord! Oh Lord! I can’t do it. I can’t make it. I can’t even believe. But oh Lord, I open!”
“Although the people had no faith, faith came when God came in to speak a word.”Life-study of Exodus, message 29
Lord, speak to us more in 2015!
PS: I really enjoyed the Winter School of Truth. The Bible is the Word of God! Hopefully I’ll share more on it soon :)
In preparation for this year’s Winter School of Truth, I’ve been following the study group guidelines for the serving one’s and helpers. To prep for my study time tomorrow, I was just reading chapters 5 and 6 from Lesson Book 6 – The Bible, which goes into twelve proofs that the Bible is the Word of God.
I appreciated the introduction at the beginning that reminded me that we believe not because of the outward proofs but because of a living touch with God the Spirit by praying in our spirit with the Word. However, although we do not need the outward proof to believe, it is still good for us to know a few crucial facts, both for ourselves and those we come into contact with. But this is not so we can debate with them, but so we can know assuredly and also present these proofs to those seeking to know more about the Bible.
Anyway, it was so enjoyable to get into these twelve proofs! No other book has stood the same test of time, no other book has affected man so dynamically, and there is no other way by which we could know God and His eternal plan. No one else but God could have written the Bible, and He has sovereignly arranged so much so we could have the Bible and know it is His Word. Thank You Lord for giving us the Bible!
For more details you’ll have to read the chapters yourselves (you can find it on ministrybooks.org under “Lesson Book, Level 6: The Bible—The Word of God”), but I’ll just list the twelve proofs that the Bible is the Word of God!
- The proof by logic
- The proof by its completion
- The proof by its prophecies
- The proof by its power
- The proof by people’s love toward the Bible
- The scientific proof
- The proof by the history of the Jewish people
- The proof by its indestructibility
- The proof by its spread during persecution
- The proof by the word of the Lord and other writers of the Bible
- The proof by ancient documents
- The proof by archaeology
Being at the Teachers Training and getting into this again now, I am being infused with a fresh love for the Bible! So I’d recommend getting into the messages at the prep.truthschool.eu website, even if you won’t be serving at the WST. These messages are really encouraging, enlightening and supplying, and each one is just 20-30 minutes long :) It’s probably also not too late to join a study group, whether you plan to be at the WST or not (FYI the deadline to register for WST is in less than 24 hours!).
The Lord and His lovers suffered much to preserve the Bible for thousands of years so that we, the lovers of the Lord, may have this great gift. We need to treasure the Bible and study it as the most precious thing we have.Lesson Book, Level 6: The Bible—The Word of God, Chapter 6
Thank You Lord for the Bible!
I do hope that I could be such a person, doing nothing and being nothing, just walking with the Lord until the day I am taken to be with Him.
Having heard that the upcoming Summer Training is going to be on the book of Genesis, and having received a lot of encouragement recently to get into the Life-studies in a regular way, I’ve decided to pause my sporadic reading of the New Testament Life-studies (but I have made it to Luke now!) and start with Genesis. Let’s see how far I can get before the Summer Training starts!
So, also in attempt to get back into posting (sorry for my silence), I thought I’d share from my enjoyment of message one. In this message, the first part was on how the Bible is a wonderful book. And it really is! It is the breath of God, it is spirit and life, and it mainly reveals life to us. Thank You Lord, for the Bible.