You yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten.
Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do.
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part.
For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints— and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us.
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He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.
And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,.
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Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age. That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them.
Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.
Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him. An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels. The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life. She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands. She is like the ships of the merchant; she brings her food from afar. Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who are elect exiles of the dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you.
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According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you.
Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one. The shepherd is a picture of Jesus, the Son of God. The prodigal son is a picture of a believer who went away in rebellion against God and the church. The father is a picture of God the Father. He does not go seeking for such a one as in the first case.
He waits until the son reaches the level of the pigs and comes back on his own. The older son is a picture of those who are lost in legalism and self-righteousness and pride. The woman who seeks for the lost coin is a picture of a church filled with the Holy Spirit. She lit a lamp and swept the house Luke and searched carefully until she found it. When she lost the coin, she was a careless church which was what caused some to backslide the coin being lost.
Then she lit a lamp she was filled with the Holy Spirit and began to seek and she found the lost backslidden ones and brought them into the fold. There are many believers who have no burden at all for the lost and for backsliders. They are only interested in themselves. A prayer that I have prayed for many years is this and I have encouraged all the elders in our churches to pray this too , "Lord, if there is anyone in this area seeking for a godly life, please bring him in touch with us, or bring us in touch with him.
And if You don't do either of these, tell us what is wrong with us, so that we can set it right, so that we can be in tune with You and find the lost. The type of fold we bring a lost sheep into is also very important. If the fold contains 99 sheep who are full of sicknesses and who are biting and tearing each other apart, then that lost sheep is better off in the wilderness than inside such a fold.
So we need not only a ministry that goes after the lost sheep, but also a ministry that keeps the 99 sheep healthy and peaceful. Jesus said: "There is more joy in heaven over one sinner that repents that's the lost sheep than the 99 righteous persons who need no repentance" Luke What a wonderful church fold this is, which has 99 righteous people who don't need to repent of anything! How is that? It is because they are judging themselves and repenting every day. They may even become a danger and obstacle to salvation. Such true knowledge fills the Sacred Heart of Jesus. He sees the lilies of the fields clothed by the Father more beautifully than Solomon arrayed in all his glory.
The birds of the air are fed by the Father and not one of them falls to the ground without His will. It is the Father Who lets the sun shine upon the good and the evil and gives rain to all in due season. If God thus takes care of irrational creatures, how much more will He take care of men who are His children. Let them cast all their cares upon their Father in Heaven.
One thing only they must attend to and that is to seek God and His justice and all things needful for their lives shall be added unto them. A Necessity But to us in our fallen state, the good things of this earth can become a danger to salvation. In enjoying these things we are liable to forget the Giver and the purpose for which the things were given. A very determined attitude, therefore, is demanded by our Lord in such circumstances.
Even an eye must be plucked out, a hand or a foot cut off, if they are an obstacle to salvation. For what does it profit a man if he gain the whole world but suffer the loss of his soul?