Jesus Commandments

Posted: 17th August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship

6. The Command to “Settle Matters Quickly”

“Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison.” (Matthew 5:25, NIV).

I believe Christ was telling the lost to “get right with God quickly!” Remember, in this scripture Jesus is teaching a crowd of people from the side of a mountain. These people were coming to learn about the Kingdom of Heaven from the Master. Unlike us, they did not have the Cross of Grace, the Holy Bible, and 2000 years of Christendom to look back upon. Jesus was speaking to them with eternal wisdom. They could only reference His teachings with temporal, 1st century minds. By believing in Christ, they were choosing the Way, the Life, and the Truth. By choosing Jesus, they would settle matters quickly.

“For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.” (2 Corinthians 6:2, NLT)

The scripture in Matthew 5:25 is also related to Christ’s previous command to “be reconciled.” Moreover, it could apply to how we should deal with our adversaries from a business sense — not just as a family one. Still, is Jesus giving us greater insight and wisdom on our dealings with the secular world? If you owe someone, do justly! Settle the matter quickly and with Christian integrity. Don’t rush into any business transactions without prayerful guidance and trusting in God. Humility is always the attitude of the God-fearing soul. “God lifts the humble.”

Immediate repentance is required to “settle matters quickly” with God. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 10th August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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5. The Command to “Be Reconciled”
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” (Matthew 5:23-24)

When we harbor anger or resentment of any kind in our hearts, or know that we have offended someone, or even suspect that someone in the family of Christ has “something” against us, our offering of praise is worthless. Our worship of Jesus is distracted and disingenuous. (1 John 3:15, Isaiah 1:14) It is when we put others before ourselves, we are worshiping Jesus. We must be reconciled with each other for our hearts to be free to focus on the only One worthy of our praise.

Jesus said, “But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:23-24, NLT)

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 2nd August 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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4. The Command to “Shine”
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)

We do not have a “works-based” faith. We are saved by Christ’s grace alone – “so no one can boast.” But, Jesus clearly says that the good works we do (by the Holy Spirit) bring glory to God. It is the very reason He gave us life. And it will continue to be our everlasting life’s work. We are not to cower in solitude and be comfortable by worldly standards, but by His grace and power shine to a lost and broken world.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 27th July 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship

3. The Command to “Rejoice”
“Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you” (Matthew 5:11–12).

“The crown of martyrdom has been thought to be the brightest that any of the redeemed shall wear…” (Albert Barnes) Following our Lord’s commands are difficult, some more at times than others, nonetheless, Jesus’s command to “rejoice” in the midst of suffering and trials is very challenging. It is easy to rejoice on the mountaintop of praise and thanksgiving, but quite another thing to rejoice in the valley of despair. Learning to truly follow this command means to be completely surrendered to His Lordship – no matter what the cost! It is a journey that will cost you your life.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 24th July 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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2. The Command to “Follow”
“Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” (NLT, Matthew 4:19).

Once we truly repent and throw off the shackles of pride and self-reliance, we must choose to follow Christ. It is a day to day, sometimes minute to minute, continuous struggle between the old self and the new, reborn self. In Matthew 16, “… Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. “ (Matthew 16:24)

What Would Jesus Do? (WWJD)” becomes our motto. Not merely a pithy slogan, it becomes the real guiding criteria by which we base all of our choices and decisions.

Jesus Commandments

Posted: 18th July 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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1. The Command to “Repent”
“From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17)

We all must repent to be part of the Kingdom of Heaven. In our Lord’s Prayer (Matt 6:9), Jesus teaches us that our deepest prayer need is for us to change. Repentance in the starting point of that journey. We need to stop praising ourselves and know that our Heavenly Father is holy. We need to get down from our thrones and put Jesus in His rightful place in our lives. We need to forget our selfish agendas and schedules, be emptied of self, so that God’s will can be done in and through us.

In Galatians 5, Paul says we cannot inherit the Kingdom of Heaven, if we do not live by the Holy Spirit’s power to lead and guide our actions. Pastor Rick Warren said this about our choices in life, “we either do God things or selfish things.” We live in a “sin-broken” world. We are affected by it everyday. We must surrender “our will” to allow the Holy Spirit to empower our lives. In King David’s awesome testimony of repentance he cries “The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.” (Psalm 51:17) We must repent to love Jesus.

Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). Jesus left his disciples with this final commandment. We call it the “Great Commission.”, “Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age. (Matthew 28:19-2, NLT) Jesus said Go! Make disciples of all nations, baptize them, and teach them “His commandments.”

Starting with the Book of Matthew, it is written that after Jesus commanded John to baptize Him, he was led into the dessert. From His temptations we learned that Jesus proclaimed “God is our provider. He is Holy and He is sovereign over all.” One could argue that Christ’s responses to Satan’s temptations in the dessert were His commandments. In my generalized summary of Christ’s responses, I believe Christ’s first response was “to live by faith in God.” His second response was “to trust in God’s word.” And His last response was “to worship God alone.” We are tempted in in the same way as Christ. There is no temptation we can not overcome, if we know His word. When Jesus returned from the desert He began His ministry and declared the favor of the Lord and His words are the food by which all Christians truly live and worship. I believe the most important of all His commands was given in John 13:34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” I believe if we all could just get our heads around that one, God’s Kingdom would come and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Keeping the commands of Jesus begins with recognizing and knowing them. The following are a collection of Jesus’ commands (taken directly from the Bible’s “Red Letters”, various translations) are presented, as best as I can manage, in New Testament order. My main goal is to help you along your worship journey with Christ. As you read through Christ’s quoted commandments, pray for God to help you understand, observe and obey them throughout your life.

The Message is Still the Same

Posted: 31st May 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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After being filled with the Holy Spirit, and led into the desert to be tempted, Jesus begins his ministry by returning to his hometown of Nazareth and reading the Gospel from the scroll of Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.”
(NLT, Luke 4:18)

In Mark 1:14-15 Jesus says, “Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.”

Jesus sends out 72 evangelists instructing them to “Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’” (Luke 10:9)

Our message to a lost world is still the same. “Bring the Good News to the poor.” Freedom, healing, truth, and God’s favor are all key components in our Gospel. But, repentance is necessary to start the journey of faith with Christ.

None are Expendable!

Posted: 30th April 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship

Not expendableGod’s fingerprints are on all of His creation. Still, His word tells us that Man is His most prized creation, and I believe His greatest disappointment. (Genesis 6:6) His Word says He delights in us and if we love one another, we are His children. He loved us so much that He gave His only begotten Son, so that we could eternally live with Him. How precious we are to Him. Yet, many stubbornly refuse to recognize Jesus Christ as our Savior.

God loves us so much that He frees us to make our own choices. Good or bad! Right or wrong! He gave free will. There is an old adage by Kahlil Gibran; “If you love somebody, let them go, for if they return, they were always yours. If they don’t, they never were.” This freedom separates us from all other earthly creation. And every time it is exercised, it defines how great our God loves us.

He gives us all the freedom to make choices for ourselves or for His glory. No one is born by mistake. God has a plan for every one that has received His gift of life. No one else can accomplish what God has purposed for you! Just as you are unique, your purpose in His story is uniquely yours. To live a life in testimony to His glory is to live a life of obedience to His commandments. His will for your life is not hard to figure out. It’s not a mystery. It’s so easy children do it without question. Love Him! Love Others!

Your love is important to ushering in the kingdom of Heaven.

Be Careful Little Eyes What You See!

Posted: 24th March 2017 by Marshall Mabry in Praise and Worship
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Your imagination plays a critical role in determining your reaction when trouble comes. Paul says this, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (NIV, Philippians 4:8) Jesus said this “22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!” (NIV, Matthew 6:22-23) The Living Bible puts it this way “If your eye is pure, there will be sunshine in your soul. 23 But if your eye is clouded with evil thoughts and desires, you are in deep spiritual darkness. And oh, how deep that darkness can be!”

It is not wise or beneficial for anyone to clutter their mind with an imagination consumed with worldliness. Entertainment that focuses on delivering messages of fantasy, horror, lust, greed, corruption, suspense and drama, is the artwork of the world. Once this information is planted in your imagination it works it way into your entire body. You will respond and react according to what fills your heart and soul. Fill it with love, humility, service, and truth.

“Art is meant to inspire, not dissuade, pervert or subjugate.”