Archive for August, 2012

Fuel for the Fire, #31: OUR TRUE BATTLE

Friday, August 31st, 2012

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the  wiles of the devil.

Ephesians 6:10-11

This is an intense time in our nation… Battles in the spiritual realms are playing out in our natural, and many of God’s servants have sensed the spiritual warfare “ramp up” recently. 

In times like these, it’s easy to mistake our real battle and our true foe:

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Ephesians 6:12  

Man is not our enemy, political ideologies and cultural agendas are not our enemies – our enemy is the accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10), the father of lies who deceives the lost, and the thief who comes to steal, kill, and destroy.  

Our response?  This is a vital time to:

  1. Draw near to God, being in His presence and Word often.  “But it is good for me to draw near to God…” (Psalm 73:28).
  2. Pray for our nation.  We need it now, perhaps more than ever. 
  3. Pray for God’s peopleBe sure to lift up your brothers and sisters, and bring their needs before the Throne of grace.

 

May the Lord bless and strengthen you this week,

Pastor Matthew Casey

© 2012, Springs of Life Ministries

F4F #30: NO FEAR in PERFECT LOVE

Monday, August 27th, 2012

We have been rescued from our enemies,

so we can serve God without fear 

in holiness and righteousness forever.

Luke 1:74-75 NLT

“NO FEAR!” has become a pop-culture mantra in recent years, showing up on the bumpers and back windows of 4×4 vehicles across our country.  It’s a bold statement – macho, manly, cavalier – but it’s also humanly impossible.  Only insane people possess no propensity to experience fear.

Certainly, the season of shaking that has hit our nation the past 4 years has left many people experiencing fear – for their finances or their retirement, for their job security or their health, or perhaps fear for what sort of a world their children will have to face when they’re grown.

Christians are not immune to feelings of fear – that’s part of being human.  However, we do have an antidote, a two-fisted weapon that defeats every fear and trumps every threat: the abiding presence and the perfect love of our Father.

FEAR SPEAKS

Fear comes in various forms with different labels – doubt or worry, anxiousness or apprehension, dread or dismay, unbelief or torment – but every one of them speaks the same basic message:

  1. You’re not safe, protected, or cared for in some way;
  2. You’re vulnerable to harm; therefore:
  3. It’s up to you to protect & provide for yourself/find your own solution.

BUT GOD SAYS OTHERWISE

GOOD NEWS ~ The Word of God gives us a vastly different report than the report of fear:

1.      GOD’S PRESENCE = NO FEAR:

  1. Fear not, for I am with you…” Isaiah 41:10 NKJV
  2. “I will fear no evil, for You are with me…” Psalm 23:4 NIV
  3. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear…” Psalm 46:1-2 NKJV

 

2.      He’ll NEVER leave us alone:

  1. “Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20 NKJV
  2. I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you” Hebrews 13:5 NLT
  3. “…for the Lord your God is the one who goes with you.  He will not fail you or forsake you.”  Deuteronomy 31:6 NASB

 

3.      PERFECT!  His love for you cannot fail:

  1. “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear…” 1 John 4:18 NASB
  2. “As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you.  Now remain in My love.” John 15:9 NIV
  3. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV

 

4.      PROMISED PROTECTION, GUARANTEED GUIDANCE ~ Your future is safe in your Father’s hands:

  1. “For You are my hiding place; You protect me from trouble.  You surround me with songs of victory.”  Psalm 32:7 NLT
  2. “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the defense of my life; whom shall I dread?”  Psalm 27:1 NASB
  3. “The Lord says, ‘I will guide you along the best pathway for your life.  I will advise you and watch over you.”  Psalm 32:8 NLT

THEREFORE… let us learn to discern the suggestions of fear.  When fear strikes, it’s time to refute it and replace it with God’s report.  Swing the Sword of the Spirit by speaking God’s Word… As you learn to consistently do so, you’ll find those fears lose their power to plague you anymore. 

You don’t have to be afraid of anything ~ not of troubles today nor the “unknown” tomorrow, not of man nor of demons, not of economic collapse or societal meltdown ~ NOTHING.  Jesus promised us that in this world we would have trouble (see John 16:33), but immediately afterward He told us to “BE OF GOOD CHEER” (meaning, full of courage, confidence, certainty, and undaunted by circumstances) “for I have overcome the world.” 

Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:37-39 NKJV

For Prayer“Father, I choose to trust You, believe You, and surrender every care into Your almighty hands.  Please expose and expel every influence of fear from my life, so that I may stand in awe only of You.  Set me free, that I may be an instrument of freeing others in the power of Jesus’ Name.  Flood me with Your perfect love, and leave no room for doubts, worries, and fears.  Be glorified in me ~ In Jesus’ Name, Amen!”    

Much love in Jesus,

Pastor Matthew Casey

 

© Springs of Life Ministries, 2012