1 John 3:22-24. "Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his COMMANDS and do what pleases him. 
And this is his COMMAND: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. 
Those who obey his COMMANDS live in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.

The Apostle John knew that there were commandments (plural) to be kept by God’s children. But he too must have known that his own people Israel has neven been able to keep those commandments. Good

commandments! Many commandments…. Trying to do them on one’s own leads to legalism. Hopeless. Our heart will condemn us. Should we then neglect them due to our unability to practice them? Both legalism and lawlessness, both self-justifying activity and indifference and disobedience are evil.  What then should we do to relate to God the right way? How do we gain confidence in prayer if we are so unworthy to approach God?

When we do this one Command we can be confident, pray according to His will and count for His answer, have the assurance of the Spirit! The keeping of all other commandments will follow.John also knew that there is the One Commandment (single). It is to believe in Jesus. He is the Door, the door to the other commandments. When we see by faith that the Commandment we really need to keep is to believe in Jesus we then get access to His Person with all His resources, accomplisjments, good works, and glory! Only then can we dream of keeping all other commandments. Only then.

I continue to train people for evangelism.

The main challenge seems to be lack of vision and lack of understanding about vision vs mission. Low self-esteem that comes from a limited picture of God and what He can do through us – weak vessels!

The encouraging thing is that people are starting to move; they get going. They communicate with me, ask questions and take the steps I suggest – those who seem to be the right people: burning, caring, dreaming, etc.

Pray for Khabarovsk, Far East Russia, and the region around!

Don’t you find it challenging…

– to strive foreward and look beyond the visible

– to admit that you are weak on your own and in need of your brothers and sisters

– to seek to influence and to be influenced

– to undertake something you can’t really grasp yet

– to be busy, active and sacrificial

AND AT THE SAME TIME TO…

– REST

– APPRECIATE AND BE GRATEFUL

– REJOICE

– BE CERTAIN AND ASSURED THAT NOTHING IS IN VAIN

– AWAIT FINAL VICTORY AND GLORY!

 

Concerning the conversation at http://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/articles/onsite/sufficient.html

(I am surprised how pretentious Clavinists can be…)

“Sufficiency of grace” is not equal to “irresistibility” of grace. A willingly received grace is not an insufficient grace. When a sinner repents of his sins and submits to Christ, the sufficient grace is bestowed as God promised. So, what’s the fuss around sufficiency of grace as opposed to non-reformed views of grace?

I disagree with the Roman Catholic view of grace as works-participation in the Church sacraments. I disagree with the Arminian understanding of election. But does that mean that I must accept Reformed posing of grace as “sufficient.” Reformed grace is IRRESISTIBLE – violent, wooing, dragging (whatever the Reformed theologians picture it), but it has little to do with SUFFICIENCY.

Vladimir (https://vtlebedev.wordpress.com/)

“God Himself is the chiefest wisdom; but the worship of God is the wisdom of man” (Augustine)

The work He does in you is invisible. It has to be! The fruit of the Spirit is grown by Him within and through you in an untangeable way. The victory over worry, inferiority, fear, anxiety, last, etc., comes slowly,unnoticed, and almost secretly. Why? Because we are inclined to trust in what we see and feel. When we see and feel, we seem to have security and control over our spiritual growth. We feel good about the change. But this feeling ood will inevitably grow into pride. and the change ceases to be the fruit of the Spirit and God’s outworking. Instead of trusting in what we see we must always trust in Him. The process, and the growth, and the bringing forth of fruit must be outside of our control, must be invisible. It must be supernatural – to humble our selves and to glorify God!

There are no PROBLEMS in life. There are only choices to make and task to solve.
A problem is a challenge or difficulty or seemingly undesirable circumstance or event that you have no means or way or strength to handle or overcome!
And when you believe God and see things from His perspective, there is non of that sort.
1 Pet 5:7  Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you
Heb 1:3 …He sustains all things by his powerful word

There are no PROBLEMS in life. There are only choices to make and task to solve.

Надежда отчаяние

A problem is a challenge or difficulty or seemingly undesirable circumstance or event that you have no means or way or strength to handle or overcome!

And when you believe God and see things from His perspective, there is non of that sort. He allows things but only because he has provided everything necessary for us to successfully go through them!

Hope

1 Pet 5:7  Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you

Heb 1:3 …He sustains all things by his powerful word

The author of Hebrews must have known well what he was summoning his readers to: “Therefore, brothers and sisters, holy partners in a heavenly calling, consider that Jesus, the apostle and high priest of our confession” (Heb. 3:1). Since we have such privileges we should most certainly give heed to out Leader who granted them to us!
But what does “consider” mean (Gk. katanoeo)? What is it the writer is calling us to? It means “fathom,” “peer into and note well,” “observe and comprehend.” We have been honored with high ranks as holy ones and citizens of heaven and that with no consideration of our merits! And we did not have any to demonstrate anyway…. And now we are challenged to really know Christ that is His mission, possible to Him only, and His unique message.
To start considering is never too late…. To continue considering we should never stop….
So, He is an Apostle, in other words, a Messenger, or Representative with an announcement from God…. A unique Message. We really should commit much time and effort to figure out it distinctive features.
He is the High Priest, a priest of the rank higher than that of any human being. He is a priest who sacrifices not the animas to redeem men from their sin, but who has sacrificed himself! No gods in any religion have been able to plan anything like that, let alone fulfill it! And it is He who forms our confession.
Consider, comprehend, observe, note! What be so insisting? Simply because we live in a world where false religious ideas attack us, attempt to grasp our attention and pervert our confession. Appeals are made to us every day – to count our merits, take for granted worldly manners, adopt religious practices and convictions so alien to the Gospel.
Think about it: if football players wish to win in a game, they should as often as possible to look to their coach, with all the fibers of their beings imbibe his philosophy of the game and tactic directives, and share his passion for win. In a similar way we should be giving heed to Jesus!

Psalm 3 (NJB). Choosing a reality – choosing the manner of living
“What God has created He also sustains” (Michael Wells, My Weakness for His Strength)
Two realities for king David to choose from….
One reality is obvious, tangible, at hand, imposing, aggressive, attacking, oppressing & depressing…
how countless are my enemies … those who say of me, ‘No salvation for him (vv. 1-2)
fear of people in their thousands upon thousands, who range themselves against me wherever I turn (6)
the teeth of the wicked (7)
It is a reality. That is how things actually are. It is the truth. Or is it, necessarily?
The other reality is bright, glorious, victorious, encouraging and promising…
there is protection in God (Yahweh, the shield at my side, 3a)
glory rests on David and he is exalted (my glory, you hold my head high, 3b)
God is not distant (he answers from his holy mountain, 4)
there is rest and no worry (if I lie down and sleep, I shall awake, for Yahweh sustains me, 5)
there is no grounds for fear (I have no fear, 6)
God will arise and destroy the enemy (v. 7)
Absalom stands for what we love, cherish, hope in and expect nothing bad from. He was David’s son. And it is from the unexpected side that painful calamities often come! Betrayal, regret of and guilt from the past, encroaching on our identity, position and reputation.
David had to choose one of the two realities. So must we. And with it we choose the manner of our living. It is going to be either mediocrity and self-destruction or growth, progress, encouraging and doing God’s will!

Psalm 3 (NJB). Choosing a reality – choosing the manner of living

“What God has created He also sustains” (Michael Wells, My Weakness for His Strength)

Two realities for king David to choose from….

One reality is obvious, tangible, at hand, imposing, aggressive, attacking, oppressing & depressing…King David

  • how countless are my enemies … those who say of me, ‘No salvation for him (vv. 1-2)
  • fear of people in their thousands upon thousands, who range themselves against me wherever I turn (6)
  • the teeth of the wicked (7)

It is a reality. That is how things actually are. It is the truth. Or is it, necessarily?

The other reality is bright, glorious, victorious, encouraging and promising…

  • there is protection in God (Yahweh, the shield at my side, 3a)
  • glory rests on David and he is exalted (my glory, you hold my head high, 3b)
  • God is not distant (he answers from his holy mountain, 4)
  • there is rest and no worry (if I lie down and sleep, I shall awake, for Yahweh sustains me, 5)
  • there is no grounds for fear (I have no fear, 6)
  • God will arise and destroy the enemy (v. 7)

Absalom stands for what we love, cherish, hope in and expect nothing bad from. He was David’s son. And it is from the unexpected side that painful calamities often come! Betrayal, regret of and guilt from the past, encroaching on our identity, position and reputation.

David had to choose one of the two realities. So must we.

And with it we choose the manner of our living. It is going to be either mediocrity and self-destruction, or growth, progress, encouragement for othes and doing God’s will!

Jesus was becoming popular…. He healed many. He was busy (vv. 32-34). He even had to hide from his disciples and from the crowd to have a time to pray alone (vv. 35-37). He refused to stay at Capernaum to continue to heal there (vv. 38-39). He was driving out demons – what a power over the spirit world! He had so much to do! And that was making him an outstanding person!

How, would a leper, a man with such an abominable disease (a disease that was thought to be a punishment for sin and that made one ceremonially unclean) count on help from this Prophet who was busy with many other people and doing so spectacular things?

Will he even pay attention to him? What will other people say if the leper dares to approach the man who will very likely soon become King?

We don’t know what precisely the struggle he experienced was but what’s described above was certainly a part of it! And we do know what the leper did! He approached Jesus and asked a question full of both uncertainty and hope: “If you want, you can clean ME!” He knew Jesus willed to and did heal others. That was deliverance, the demonstration of power that brought fame to Jesus. But dealing with an unclean man…. Would Jesus even want to do that?

The leper didn’t make any of the following requests:

IF you want…

If you WANT

If you want you CAN

If you want you can CLEANSE

The leper wanted a confirmation that Jesus is willing to cleanse him, him in particular, such as he was, rejected and neglected by others:

If you wish to cleanse ME as well, you are able to do that!

And Jesus was willing to cleanse the leper! To the surprise of those gaping…. To the humbling of those who thought the lepers were not worthy of a prophet’s attention…. To the reversal of values….

And, lo, the result! One who appeared less likely to be blessed by and used of God was blessed and used mightily!

He was now driven from within to go and tell others of Jesus!

Do you think you are not significant enough for God to fiddle around with you? Do you think He is busy with other people who are more worthy? Well, it is you he is looking for! Dare to approach Him and say:

“IF YOU WANT TO BLESS AND USE ME TOO, YOU CAN DO SO!”