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  • Writer's pictureFrank Paul

February 2024 newsletter


FEBRUARY 2024


Quotes of the month


It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.

 

Socrates

 

So be killing sin. All the time. Make it your priority every day. Always be doing it as long as you are alive in this world. Don’t take even one day off from it.

 

John Owen, The Mortification of Sin

 

We will all be required to yield up the soul that was lent to us.

 

Wisdom 15:8

 

Do not pray as a duty. Realize that prayer is a visit with God and should be restful and joyous.

 

Make Your Life Worthwhile,

by Emmet Fox

 

Our generation is becoming so busy trying to prove that women can do what men can do, that women are losing their uniqueness. Women weren’t created to do everything a man can do. Women were created to do everything a man can’t do.

 

The Potter’s Clay website

 

The Imitation of Christ, Thomas Kempis, pages 51 and 52

 

Depart unclean spirit; put on shame miserable one; horribly unclean art thou, who bringest such things to mine ears. Depart from me, detestable deceiver; thou shalt have no part in me; but Jesus shall be with me as a strong warrior, and thou shalt stand confounded. Rather would I die and bear all suffering, than consent unto thee. Hold thy peace and be dumb; I will not hear thee more, though thou plottest more snares against me. The Lord is my light and my salvation: whom then shall I fear? Though a host of men should rise up against me, yet shall not my heart be afraid. The Lord is my strength and my Redeemer.

 

 

Truth is Eternal; not Bound by Time

by Frank Paul


The cloak of immunity from hell that Americans inexplicably think they have draped over them is naivety at best, pure stupidity at worse. Today not only are we abandoning God and Jesus, but we are also rewriting their laws and commandments to fit current cultural thinking. Pretty sure that’s been tried in the past numerous times and has been met with utter disaster and death. Jeremiah, a book of the Old Testament during 685 – 616 B.C., emphasizes the destiny of every man is determined by his conformity or lack of conformity to God and His plan; and as of now, our destiny seems to be a rapid slide downward. Sounds too similar to the Bible thumpers of old; fine, I will listen to any other explanation someone has to put forth, but all I see is a Satan-induced influence that is undermining our society at all levels on a daily basis.

Since truth is eternal and not bound by time, should we not heed the prophet’s advice from the past and correct our behavior before it is too late. And yes, there is a “too late” that we must come face to face with, whether we care to entertain that thought or not. As it has been said in the past, “Your life will intersect with the cross sooner or later, one way or the other – either on your way up, or on your way down.” The prophets of old had a direct link to God; the same God that wants all His children today to listen to Him. Would it be so bad to put away our false gods? Okay, so maybe we don’t idolize golden calves, but have we replaced the calves with lust, money, selfishness, narcissism, et cetera. Do we care for the poor and the widowed, as the Lord’s Son Jesus instructed us? I think not. Have we turned our attention to Facebook, InstaGram, and Twitter more than reading the Bible? I think so.

If you were to read Jeremiah, you would feel this prophet’s pain and angst in trying to reach out to his fellow citizens as he was ignored time and time again. “For I have spoken to Jerusalem and Judah, and they heard me not. They are lost in their iniquities and have forgotten the Lord; the same Lord that led them out of the land of Egypt when they were in bondage.” Oh, how Jeremiah cried and begged God’s people to return to Him, to put away all their false gods and come back to the one who created them; the pain and heartache Jeremiah felt as his words, the words which the Lord instructed him to say, fell upon deaf ears. Who were these ridiculously stubborn people who refused to listen to Jeremiah. They were acting like spoiled children.

Are we today in 2024 not behaving similarly. Jeremiah is gone, but his words are still with us, and they need to be heeded. In Jeremiah 12:17 God says, “but if they will not obey, I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation.” Somehow today we have come to the conclusion that God does not really mean what He says, and that is another Satan-induced lie.  God is still very much alive and active in our lives. Two weeks ago a Turkish parliament leader was giving a speech condemning Israel for its invasion of Gaza. At the end of the speech he quoted the Koran and called down a curse on Israel. In the very next second he collapsed and died. Genesis 12:2 came true live on TV, right before everyone’s eyes. You can find it on YouTube under Jonathan Cahn’s videos. Ever wonder why we do not listen; it is simply easier not to, so that we can continue in our God-absent lives with no thought of eternity. I know, it sounds harsh, but there are enough candy-coated words being bantered about today. Sometimes a slap in the face might be what is needed, unpleasant as it may be to think about.

Perhaps my appeal to you comes from my own sense of mortality now more so than ever. A couple of months ago I returned home from a funeral service for an acquaintance that I had known for 50 years, his wife for 40 years, and his kids for 30 years, and now he is gone. Luckily, it wasn’t “too late” for him because he was a man of deep faith in Jesus; but what about you? Do you want to reach your end and start scrambling about how to change your behavior and figure out where you will spend eternity. You need to start now. The Lord does not want us to suffer in hell; He even said it himself in Jeremiah 3:22 – 23, “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness.” God is the Lord of mercy and compassion; and if you think about it, that is really, really nice, since we do not exactly live our lives in tune with His commandments. Maybe it is that word “commandments” that irks us so much. We do not like to be commanded on what to do or how to behave because we think “we’ve got this.” Well, you don’t. No one wants to think about hell because it is scary and final; yet we can all fantasize about how wonderful heaven is; but there is a hell and it is just as real as heaven, and you do not want to end up there. We plan for our finances, our relationships. We care more for our dogs and cats than we do for our souls, yet our souls will live on. Somewhere. God had even addressed this concern 2600 years ago when He said in Jeremiah 12:10,” Pastors have destroyed my vineyard.” And Jeremiah pleaded with us again in 22:29 when he said, “O earth, earth, hear the Word of the Lord.”

My acquaintance that passed on recently was a reformed alcoholic; clean for 25 years, probably more, yet often he said he still took it one day at a time. We can do the same with “cleaning up” our souls; one day at a time. It is a “must” thought, not a “maybe” thought. We must today think about where our soul is going to spend eternity. Kindness feels good, giving to others feels good, demonstrating compassion to others feels good; and there is a reason for that: we have God’s love in us since we were created in His likeness. Let us not keep that “good guy” buried inside; bring him out and let him breathe and let us give some thought and attention to our souls and our soul’s destiny; it certainly could not hurt.


Knowing God, by Alistair Begg


No longer shall each one teach his neighbor and teach his brother, saying, “Know the Lord,” for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord, In Jeremiah 31:34. In the days of the prophet Jeremiah, God refused to break the covenant He had made with His people.

Despite His steadfast love, though, God’s people continued to sin. This presented a problem: how could God fulfill the promises He had made to bless His people when they continually demonstrated their unfaithfulness to Him?

As a part of His great plan, God pledged a new covenant—a work of inner re-creation. As the theologian Alec Motyer writes, “When his people could not rise to the height of his standards, the Lord does not lower his standards to match their ability; he transforms his people.” This new covenant is the purpose and promise of God to regenerate hearts through the blood of the Lord Jesus. He takes our hearts and He makes them the perfect shape—like fitting a piece in a jigsaw puzzle—so that His law becomes a delight to us. In God’s declaration of this new covenant, the verb “know” is key. In the original Hebrew, its meaning is clear from the very beginning in Genesis: the straightforward statement that Adam “knew” his wife and they bore children (Genesis 4:1) demonstrates the level of intimacy it conveys. God is saying that when His people come to an understanding of His love, they won’t simply be doing Bible studies at arm’s length; they’ll be people who truly know Him. What Jeremiah spoke of in the future tense, we are able to enjoy in the present; for in between his prophecy and our time, the Lord Jesus held up a cup of wine the night before He died and announced, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood” (Luke 22:20). By God’s grace, you and I may know the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Not only this, but He also knows each of our names, individually; and He knows our needs and is committed to our well-being. Jesus bears our names before the Father—and because of all He is and all He’s done, those names are written in the Book of Life. What kind of King is this? The answer is beyond our ability to fully comprehend. Someday, we will see Him face-to-face and understand far more than we do today. But still, today you can go about with the confidence that comes from knowing that you know the God who redeemed you through His Son, who dwells in and works in you by His Spirit, and in whose throne room you will one day stand.


Editor’s note: Perhaps you noticed the common denominator of Jeremiah in the last two articles. Maybe it is a sublime push to re-read or read for the first time Jeremiah, followed by Lamentations. Good use of your time.


As a Reminder…

 

If you do not observe the Sabbath as a Sabbath, you will not see the Father.

 

Jesus speaking to His disciples in the Gospel of Thomas,

Nag Hammadi Scriptures

 

 

         A Prayer

 

With all my heart and soul, O God, I thank Thee, that in all the changes and chances of this mortal life, I can look up to Thee, and cheerfully resign my will to Thine. I have trusted Thee, O Father, with myself; my soul is in Thy hand, which I verily believe Thou wilt preserve from all evil; my body, and all that belongs to it, are of much less value. I do therefore, with as great security as satisfaction, trust all I have to Thee. I am persuaded that neither tribulation, nor anguish, nor persecution, nor famine, nor

nakedness, nor peril, nor sword, nor death which I may fear, nor life which I may hope for, nor things present which I feel, nor things to come which I may apprehend, shall ever prevail so far over me, as to make me not to resign my will entirely to Thee. Amen.

Thomas Wilson  (1663 – 1755)

 

God doesn’t require us to succeed, He only requires that you try.

 

Mother Teresa

 

 

The Sower of Seeds

 

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copyright@TheSeedSower2024

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