Daily Bread - May 28, 2020 (The Fifth Day - Genesis 1:20-23)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Thursday, 28 May 2020 08:42
1 John 2:16 - Because everything that is in the world: the lust of the
flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father,
but is of the world.

Part 3 ~ The Pride of Life

The final phrase in this group of three is 'he alazoneia tou biou'. The
Greek word 'alazoneia' may be translated as "pride," "arrogance," or
"boastfulness." It is difficult to define this word from a Biblical
context, because it does not appear in any of the canonized book of the Old
Testament and only twice in the New Testament. It is translated in the
Authorized Version as "pride," but the Greek word used in 1 Timothy 3:6 is
'tuphotheis', "Not a novice, lest he be lifted up in pride."

The English word "pride" is only found 3 times in the New Testament, and it
is translated from a different word each time. The Greek word 'bios' is
found 10 times in the New Testament and means "livelihood," "the means of
life," "life," or "duration of life." The Greek word 'bios' would be
opposed to 'zoe,' which is used to identify eternal life --the life one
receives when they are born from above (John 3:3-8). This phrase can be
translated as: pride of life, pride about one's means of livelihood, or
pride about one's lifestyle. Be certain that you do not give a false value
to the things you can do and achieve in this natural and temporal life
(Jeremiah 17:5-8; Psalm 127).
 
Daily Bread - May 27, 2020 (The Fourth Day - Genesis 1:14-19)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 27 May 2020 08:42
1 John 2:16 - Because everything that is in the world: the lust of the
flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father,
but is of the world.

Part 2 ~ The Desire (Lust) of the Eye

One of the first things we might ask regarding this verse is: what is the
difference between the "desire of the flesh" and the "desire of the eye"?
The "desire of the eye" would be those things that are attractive to view
that could lead you away from the will of God and His purposes. For
example, Eve saw the forbidden tree in Genesis 3:6 as "pleasurable to the
eye and desirable." She did not have this attraction because of an evil
nature at work in her, but under the influence of the suggestion of the
satanic realm, she yielded herself to that which was not of God. Looking on
that which was forbidden was not an evil act in and of itself --rather it
became the means by which she was enticed by what God had forbidden.

When men look on things that are forbidden by God, they open themselves up
to be led away into an evil desire that results in immorality and
ungodliness. Therefore, we need to recognize it is essential for us to make
a covenant with our eyes to turn away and not behold that which could lead
us into disobedience (Job 31:1). It may be said that the "desire of the
eye" is that which entices the eye and the "desire of the flesh" is that
which entices the body. Yet, at the same time, one may argue these two are
in many respects synonymous. However, the eye looks for that which is
beautiful and the body for that which is pleasurable. Now, one may say God
made that which is beautiful and pleasurable and that is true. However,
Satan has taken what God made, and twisted and perverted it. We must
recognize that the satanic forces use the material realm of God's creation
to set up their offensive against man and the will of God. It is absolutely
essential that we learn to choose good and refuse evil.

In the Old Testament, God expected His people to discipline themselves and
be committed to obeying Him in all things. Even though they were not born
from above and were without the change of heart and motive that is now
given to us by the divine nature (2 Peter 1:3-4), yet it was their
responsibility not to be involved with following after those things that
would lead them into sin. "You shall remember all the commandments of the
Lord to do them, and you shall not turn back toward the desire of your own
heart and your eyes" (Numbers 15:39). Jesus is very clear on how someone
should deal with anything that causes a person to sin: cut it off or pluck
it out (Mark 9:43-48).
 
Daily Bread - May 26, 2020 (The Third Day - Genesis 1:9-13)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 26 May 2020 10:59
1 John 2:16 - Because everything that is in the world: the lust of the
flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father,
but is of the world..

Part 1 ~ The Desire (Lust) of the Flesh

Everything in the world is antithetical to God. The satanic forces of Hell
dominate this realm. There is nothing that is in the world that comes from
the Father, directly or indirectly. Satan is the father of all sin and
iniquity, and it is from him alone that this darkness has issued (John
8:44). The primary means of enticing men and leading them away from God is
through that which may be seen, felt, and gained. One of the first things
we may ask then is: what is the difference between the "desire of the
flesh" and the "desire of the eye"?

The phrase used in 1 John 2:16, "he epithymia tes sarkos" (the desire of
the flesh) is one of the identifiers of those who are not born of God (the
Father). The desire of the flesh is a dimension of the wickedness that
belongs to the world. It is opposite of the desire of the Spirit, and
something that we belonged to prior to salvation (Romans 8:9; Ephesians
2:1-3). It is opposed to the love of the Father. The love of the Father
teaches us to "deny ungodliness and worldly desires, and to live
righteously, godly, and soberly in this present world" (Titus 2:11-12). The
word 'epithymiai' means "desire" or "wish," and it is used in both a good
and bad sense in the Bible. In Philippians 1:23, Paul says, "My desire...is
to be with Christ." On the other hand, it is used in a bad sense in John
8:44, "The Devil is your father, and you carry out the desires of your
father." John only uses the word 'sarx' (flesh) one time in his First
Epistle in relationship to the wickedness of the unredeemed man. When he
uses the word two other times, he uses it in a good sense, referring to
Jesus being manifested in the flesh (1 John 4:2, 3).

There are two approaches to understanding the "desires of the flesh,"
either in the Greek sense, or the Hebrew. The Hebrew concept of the 'sarx'
(flesh) includes all of man's weaknesses --not just sensual or carnal, but
the realm of the purely human without divine help. This is still witnessed
in the New Testament where the 'sarx' may be regarded as human knowledge
(flesh and blood) distinct from divine revelation (Matthew 16:17; John
8:15; Galatians 1:16). Paul also regards the flesh as the power of sin that
is opposed to the Spirit of God, a power that is removed by the
circumcision of Christ (Romans 7:5; Colossians 2:11). The Greeks
exclusively use 'sarx' to refer to eating, drinking, and illicit sexual
relations. They would regard 'sarx' as being sensual and carnal, opposed to
anything spiritual or pious.

When we find flesh in the Bible, it would be incorrect to jump to a
conclusion that every usage of "flesh" refers only to those things that are
evil, for Christ Jesus was manifested in the flesh and suffered in the
flesh. However, when we focus in on the phrase "desire of the flesh," we
find an exclusive application to what is opposite of the Spirit of God and
contrary to the will of the Father. "Put on Christ and make no provision
for the desires of the flesh," "Walk in the Spirit and you shall not
fulfill the desires of the flesh," and "Those who belong to Christ Jesus
have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires" (Romans 13:14;
Galatians 5:16-17, 24).

In the New Testament, a clear distinction is made between those of the
Spirit and those of the flesh. Yet at the same time, we know Jesus became
flesh and lived after the Spirit. Still, the fact remains that the
distinction between the flesh and the Spirit can be as radical as that of
light and darkness as in the preceding examples, or it can simply be a
contrast between human ability and divine ability (Galatians 4:22-29).
However, there is one thing we can be certain of for sure: God makes it
essential that all men are born of the Spirit and live after the Spirit
(John 3:6; Romans 8:9; 1 Peter 4:1). Now, through the Grace of God that has
brought to us this radical transformation of nature, we are "not in the
flesh, but in the Spirit" (Romans 8:9). Therefore, let's yield to the Holy
Spirit today, and let Him lead us and guide us in every desire of our lives!
 
Daily Bread - May 25, 2020 (The Second Day - Genesis 1:6-8)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Monday, 25 May 2020 17:03
Acts 17:30-31 - Therefore, God disregarding the time of your ignorance, now
commands all men everywhere to repent! Because He has set a day in which He
is going to judge the inhabitants in righteousness by a Man whom He has
appointed, having provided everyone with faith by His resurrection from
death.

There are three very important facts established here in these verses:

1- There is an appointed time for judgment.
2- Everyone will be judged by God's standard of righteousness.
3- Jesus is the Man that has been appointed by God to be the judge.

This judgment refers to the judgment seat of Christ and also the Great
White Throne judgment. The Judgment Seat of Christ will take place before
the one thousand year reign of Christ; and at that time, all of God's
saints will be judged. Paul states emphatically that we must all stand
before the Judgment Seat of Christ to give an account for the deeds done in
our body, whether they are good or bad (2 Corinthians 5:10; Romans 2:16; 2
Timothy 4:1). Jesus said all judgment had been given to Him in Heaven and
in Earth. The judgment is not based on individual circumstance, but on the
Word Jesus has already spoken, and so graciously delivered into our hands
today, so that we can understand our responsibilities before God (John
12:48). Jesus also gave us an understanding of God's expectation for our
life when He demanded that we overcome as He overcame. In fact, in His
address to the seven churches of Revelation chapters 2 and 3, He makes the
standard of righteousness very clear.

God's expectation is that we walk in His righteousness and purity;
otherwise, our names will be blotted out of the Lamb's Book of Life. The
manner of Jesus' life and conduct is the standard of righteousness, and we
are to follow in His example (1 Peter 2:21-24). John said, "Let no one
deceive you, he that does righteousness is righteous even as He (Jesus) is
righteous (1 John 3:7, 2:29). God's judgment is not subjective; He has
plainly made known His will to all men and has provided us with the ability
to fulfill His will. We should all take heed to the warning Jesus gave when
He said, "Not everyone that says "Lord, Lord" will enter into the Kingdom
of Heaven, but they that do the will of my Father". There can be no doubt
concerning the will of the Father, for He has made it painfully clear
(Matthew 7:21-27; 1 John 2:15-17).
 
Daily Bread - May 23, 2020 (The Seventh Day - Genesis 1:24-31)
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 23 May 2020 11:07
1 John 2:15 - Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone
loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

Part 2 ~ We are Not of the World, Even as He is Not of the World

God is absolutely separate from the world, and has a burning wrath against
all its sin and iniquity (Romans 1:18; Ephesians 5:6; Colossians 3:6). This
should not be hard for anyone to understand, especially in view of the fact
that the world is controlled by every evil enterprise of Satan (John 16:11;
2 Corinthians 4:4; Ephesians 2:2; 1 John 4:3-5, 5:19). If we are on the
Lord's side, then how can we do anything less than hate those things that
oppose the purity and the goodness of the Father? How could we ever be in
league with all those things that grieve the Father's heart and violate His
way of life? We have been given the blessed gift and invitation to come out
from among them, and be separate with Him (2 Corinthians 6:17-18). We are
called to separate ourselves from the filthiness of the flesh and of the
spirit, and perfect holiness in the fear of God (2 Corinthians 7:1). The
door into His presence has been opened unto us. We have been given the life
of Christ. This glorious fellowship with Almighty God in which everything
pertaining to life and godliness is ours --so why would we ever go out and
return to the place of death that despises the ways of the Lord? (John
15:1-5, 17:21-23; Ephesians 2:6; Colossians 1:13; and Hebrews 10:19-21,
12:22; 2 Peter 1:3).

We are not of this world, even as He is not of this world. We have been
changed and transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit to live a godly
life (John 15:19, 17:14, 16; and Titus 2:11-12, 3:4-5; 2 Peter 1:3-4). Our
hearts have been united with the heart of the Lord, and our spirits made
one with God. We are His sons and daughters, created in Christ Jesus to
live in His ways (Ephesians 2:10, 4:24; 2 Corinthians 6:17-18; Luke
1:74-75). We have no love for worldly lusts, but rather are at war against
them. We have been given the gifts of God's holiness and righteousness, and
could not be more opposite from an ungodly world. We are to despise the
evil, and have no fellowship with its works of darkness and its spirit of
disobedience. Our citizenship is in Heaven, and as strangers and pilgrims,
we walk in the Spirit and abstain from fleshly lusts --following in the
footsteps of Christ Jesus, clothed with His majesty and honor.


Song of the Spirit from last First Day:

I'm walking in the Light,
As You are in the Light,
I'm living out this life abundantly,
In Jesus.

I'm in Him and He's in me,
I'm standing in His stead,
For the world to see,
It's Jesus.
 
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