Sunday, July 10, 2016

Reflection - Experiencing God (4)

Source (book): "Faithful to the end", Chapter 9, Question 4, Page 137.
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012


Ask God for forgiveness and help
PHOTO: Ask God for forgiveness and help
God's work is perfect. When He forgives, sins are forgiven, removed, cast away, and not called to his mind anymore. We need to ask God to forgive us for not fully trusting Him.
Posted by The Academy of European Arts and Culture on 18 July 2013
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https://i0.wp.com/artlemon.ru/imagesbase/1/big/leighton-frederic/ger-leighton-clytie-artfond.jpg
https://alsharqawy.wordpress.com/tag/art/page/2/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/06/reflection-father-john-chrysostoms.html


Jot down examples where the Bible has taught you, rebuked you, corrected you, and trained you in righteousness. Share your list with others to encourage them.

The gift of God - Father John Chrysostom's comment
Pray for God's guidance now to us the way to the perfect opportunity to do what we love, to do what we can do well, and what will fulfill our needs mentally, spiritually, and financially. Most importantly ask for help to walk faithfully as He show us the way.

Our awesome God created everyone with unique abilities and talents to help serve our brothers and sisters in Christ. Be wise and put the gift of God (talent) into use to help others. We are all part of the body of Christ. Stop letting Gods gifts to catch dust. Use it or lose it! He gave them to us for a reason.

What is the gift that God has given you? [3]

  • Step One: Identifying our gifts (things we enjoy doing)
  • Step Two: Answer the question: What do you loathe? (things we hate doing)
  • Step Three: Discover the Seven Seeds of your Soul
Eliminate activities (those we enjoy doing) that are unable to fulfill the 6 questions. The surviving activities will be your inherent gifts. . . . Pursue living as who you were born to be and you'll achieve your true destiny.

Father John Chrysostom
PHOTO: Father John Chrysostom
The Church Father John Chrysostom wrote in the 4th century, "For by sloth and carelessness it is quenched, and by watchfulness and diligence it is kept alive." [2]
Posted by Ambrus Nemes, Uploaded on Sep 20, 2011
Title: 13 "Our Father"

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ht1x_lokMbM/VX7BnVM36pI/AAAAAAAAgWA/wM3j0wCUc00/s1600/maxresdefault-1.jpg
http://i.ytimg.com/vi/mmacr65coLc/maxresdefault.jpg
https://www.savetubevideo.com/?v=mmacr65coLc
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/06/reflection-father-john-chrysostoms.html



Paul's biblical accounts
Paul was appointed to carry the name of Christ especially to the Gentiles
"This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their Kings and before the people of Israel. I will show him how much he must suffer for my name" (Acts 9:15-16).

He reminded Timothy "to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you" (2 Timothy 1:6).

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)

Serving Him is my happy hour

Seeing people coming to know Christ is one of the greatest and priceless moments that we could ever have in our life as God used us as an instrument to reach out to these people. It increases your compassion as you hear their life story and struggle in life. You became more selfless and more eager to live your calling.

The Lord called Paul to 'be his witness to all men'.
PHOTO: The Lord called Paul to "be his witness to all men". Paul become a Spirit-filled witness greatly used by the Lord for His glory. He brought the gospel far and wide, and in depth across generations through his epistles.
Picture posted by Catholic Online, St. Paul Fun Facts
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-5Ktkz-Z1aO8/VXgAYtT8tII/AAAAAAAAgRI/mSaBWZ8wljU/s1600/65.jpg
http://www.catholic.org/saints/ff_images/65.jpg
http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=91
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/06/reflection-pauls-biblical-accounts.html



Communion of saints
How do you understand the phrase ("communion of saints") ? [5]
All saints that are united to Jesus Christ have fellowship in his graces, sufferings, death, resurrection, and glory.

Importance of "communion of saints" [4]
The communion of saints is all what each one of us has in common with all other believers.

We have been forgiven through His death and saved by His life (Romans 5:10), set free from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2), and passed from spiritual death to eternal life (1 John 3:16).
We have all been permanently adopted as children of God by the will of God (John 1:12-13).
We have become God's handiwork to do good works that He has prepared for us (Ephesians 2:10)
We have all been given an eternal home in the New Jerusalem in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ, our Lamb, our Temple, and our Light (Revelation 21:22–27).

These are only a few of the blessings we have in common with all other believers. [4]

The communion of the saints refers to believers in the past, believers in the present, and believers in the years to come sharing a common salvation in our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ.

The communion of the saints refers to believers in the past, believers in the present, and believers in the years to come sharing a common salvation in our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ.
PHOTO: The communion of the saints refers to believers in the past, believers in the present, and believers in the years to come sharing a common salvation in our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ.
Picture posted by Bro. Andrew on 12 October 2014

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xZgcqyN3vfM/VWulLbN0JwI/AAAAAAAAgNM/nF5Or4CgoKA/s1600/rapture.jpg
http://king-of-the.net/images/rapture.jpg
http://king-of-the.net/rapture2.html
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/06/reflection-communion-of-saints.html



Inspiring Christians
Inspirational Christians: Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Augustine, John Chrysostom, Ambrose, Bernard of Clairvaux, Francis of Assisi, Julian of Norwich, John Hus, John Wycliffe, Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Wesley, Teresa of Avila, Charles Spurgeon, and many others, believed in God and lived out their faith.

Add to those the stories of missionaries, preachers, and social reformers in more recent centuries, and we would have gained a wonderful knowledge of our rich Christian Heritage.

It is important that we entrust others with the rich heritage that we have received and come to know. This needs to be done at home as well as in church. How wonderful if we could all say with Paul and Timothy that we know our rich and living heritage.

These are a few inspirational Christians whose lives were shaped and moulded by their Christian faith. Through the practical application of Christian values and teachings they helped inspire others to live a better life.
PHOTO: Inspirational Christians are those whose lives were shaped and moulded by their Christian faith. Through the practical application of Christian values and teachings they helped inspire others to live a better life.
Posted by Empowering Spirits - Freeing Your Mind at Tuesday, April 06, 2010
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-3yNPzZ05qUo/VVrx7K_nmrI/AAAAAAAAgEg/Yc1kuNHnTK0/s1600/IMG_72782331513878.jpeg
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-01zCFFy3nnA/VMMVZdKSlPI/AAAAAAAAEdY/dtYsXQ-vsHc/s1600/IMG_72782331513878.jpeg
http://www.empoweringspirits-freeingyourmind.com/2010/04/the-true-meaning-of-love-god-bless-child.html
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/05/reflection-inspiring-christians.html



Christian Family

  • Parent ensure that they spent significant and regular time with each child, teaching them about God and helping them to read the Bible.
  • Parent ensure that their godliness inspires the younger generations to continue on the faith.
  • Parent ensure that rich Christian heritage and godliness continue in the generations that follow.
  • Parent ensure that Christian virtues in the home make up a godly heritage that will bless those who grow up in such home.
  • Parent ensure that they Love their children. Keep a loving, open relationship.
  • Parents should not underestimate the religious influence of grandparents.
  • Parent bring your children to church.

One fairly obvious thing, more obvious than expected, lies in parents who provide consistent modeling. If the parents aren't consistent, the kids won't have religious role models to emulate. In other words, don't just send your children to church, bring them!
All your children shall be taught by the Lord, and great shall be the peace of your children (Isaiah 54:13).

Blessed by a good heritage: Young Christians continued to be encouraged and nurtured
PHOTO: Blessed by a good heritage: Young Christians continued to be encouraged and nurtured
Lois and Eunice probably continued to encourage and nurture young Timothy. The totality of their faith in God and their newfound faith in Christ must have been an inspiration to Timothy.
Pinned by Yvonne on Pinterest
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https://www.pinterest.com/pin/345018021429640492/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/05/reflection-christian-family.html



Old and New Testament
Learn from Paul: history of God's people was a special conduit for the salvation plan of God. It was still the same faith as that of Old Testament believers like Abraham and David, as he had argued in Romans 4, for it was the same God in whom they all had believed.

The Road to Emmaus (Caravaggio, 1606)
Do you not understand?” the man asks them. “Are you so slow to believe what the prophets wrote in the Scriptures? Didn’t they predict that the Messiah would have to suffer these things before He entered His time of glory?

The stranger attempts to rekindle their embered hopes by quoting them the prophets, starting with the book of Genesis and going through the Scriptures, explaining what they meant.

Suddenly, the veil of obscurity vanishes from their eyes and they recognize him! It is Jesus Himself! And at that moment, He disappears from their sight.

Way to Emmaus by Robert Zünd (1827-1909)
PHOTO: Way to Emmaus by Robert Zünd (1827-1909)
With the Sabbath now past, the two men somberly amble their way to the village of Emmaus, just a little more than seven miles away. A stranger (Jesus Christ) comes from behind to join them and interrupts their conversation. The stranger attempts to rekindle their embered hopes by quoting them the prophets, starting with the book of Genesis and going through the Scriptures, explaining what they meant.
Posted by Christ Bearers on 11 April 2012
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-LchBuRLSG_A/VUCTi4Qm8JI/AAAAAAAAf8Q/JzDe0FO2fT8/s1600/the-road-to-emmaus-02.jpg
https://christbearers.files.wordpress.com/2012/04/the-road-to-emmaus-02.jpg?w=640&h=432
https://christbearers.wordpress.com/2012/04/11/a-funny-thing-happened-on-the-way-to-emmaus/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/04/reflection-old-and-new-testament.html



Are We All Equal?
We should look upon EVERYONE with respect as our equal.

 In the Jewish culture of Jesus of Nazareth, women were very low in status. If a women was caught in the act of adultery, she could be stoned - forget about the mans transgressions! The testimony of a woman was useless and never to be taken as truthful.

However, we see an entirely different attitude toward women in four encounters Jesus had with a woman of his time. Each encounter is a teaching moment for us all to understand.

This woman was considered an adulterer and was also a Samaritan, considered lower than low; the most undesirable of the undesirables by any good Jew of the day. Jesus of Nazareth did the unthinkable and SPOKE to her!
PHOTO: This woman was considered an adulterer and was also a Samaritan, considered lower than low; the most undesirable of the undesirables by any good Jew of the day. Jesus of Nazareth did the unthinkable and SPOKE to her! (John 4:7-15)
Posted by Bruce Hennigan on 3 December 2012
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-PwOa8Q0k19s/VSaHBzir4uI/AAAAAAAAfyI/16aIbo72Eps/s1600/woman-at-the-well-5001.jpg
http://dbhennigan.files.wordpress.com/2012/12/woman-at-the-well-5001.jpg
http://brucehennigan.com/2012/12/03/are-we-all-equal/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/04/reflection-are-we-all-equal.html



Why is Jesus the unique and only Saviour of the world?
"He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world." (1 John 2:2)

Unique: Christ Jesus has destroyed death and has bought life and immortality to light through the gospel (2 Timothy 1:9-10) - our Saviour. "This grace was given to us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now being revealed through the appearing of our Saviour, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has bought life and immortality to light through the gospel"

The gospel of Jesus Christ has to do with our relationship with God. We are alienated from God because of our sinful condition. The good news is that in Christ, God has made His grace and mercy available to us, in that even though we are helpless, we can be forgiven and our relationship with God restored. This provision of God's grace is a reality, the origins of which are found not in time but in eternity. We rely entirely on God's grace to be saved. This salvation in Christ is comprehensive and complete. All of it is made available in Christ, the unique Saviour of mankind. When we place our trust in him, we receive the indwelling Holy Spirit, the sanctifying One who makes us holy and share the likeness of Christ.

Unique: Jesus Christ is the Son of God sent by the Father to earth - to die on the cross for our sins
PHOTO: Unique: Jesus Christ is the Son of God sent by the Father to earth - to die on the cross for our sins
"He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world" (
1 John 2:2).
Posted on imgarcade.com - online image arcade (Jesus Risen Tomb)
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fxzRQH8GjxY/VST581gn9wI/AAAAAAAAfuY/BCD0IINTMD0/s1600/Christ_empty_tomb.jpg
http://www.fggam.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Christ_empty_tomb.jpg
http://imgarcade.com/1/jesus-risen-tomb/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/04/reflection-why-is-jesus-unique-and-only.html



"This grace was given to us before the beginning of time"
2 Timothy 1:9, (New International Version)
He has saved us and called us to a holy life - not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time.

Live in confidence of God's unconditional love (Grace), forgiveness, tenderness and patience with us.
Relax into a larger amount of grace - feeling the healing balm of unconditional love, AS ourself - and learn why so many of our efforts to improve, grow and evolve leave us unsatisfied.

Assurance of salvation
PHOTO: Assurance of salvation
Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future.

If we have accepted Jesus and His death on the cross for our sins as full payment for our sin, we have Jesus; therefore, we are forgiven, we are saved, we possess the gift of eternal life, and heaven will be our home.

When we stand on the Word of God by faith in what Jesus has done, then the Bible assures us that our forgiveness and salvation are guaranteed.

Because you have believed in Jesus, and because you have entrusted your life to Him, you can be certain that He will take care of you until the day that He returns and takes you to live with Him forever. Your life and eternal destiny are in His hands, and He won*t drop you!

From now on, when Satan brings doubts to your mind, put your faith in the facts that are recorded in God's Word. Learn to say: "God says it. I believe it. and that settles it!"
Posted by Marsing Church of the Nazarene
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-gujfdm8BUC0/VRv_EEaJr6I/AAAAAAAAftU/lu6iImL9wBY/s1600/marsingnaz.org_misc_image1460.jpg
http://marsingnaz.org/Misc_Images/marsingnaz.org_misc_image1460.jpg
http://www.marsingnaz.org/site/cs/editorial.asp?page=4
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/04/reflection-this-grace-was-given-to-us.html



"Why does God allow evil?"
We live in a real world where our good and evil actions have direct consequences and indirect consequences upon us and those around us. God's desire is that for all of our sake we would obey Him that it might be well with us (Deuteronomy 5:29). Instead, what happens is that we choose our own way, and then we blame God for not doing anything about it. Such is the heart of sinful man. But Jesus came to change men's hearts through the power of the Holy Spirit, and He does this for those who will turn from evil and call on Him to save them from their sin and its consequences (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Why does God allow evil?
PHOTO: Why does God allow evil?
If God has the power to prevent evil and desires to prevent evil, why does He still allow evil?
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http://assets.jw.org/assets/m/fg/fg.art/1102012190_univ_cnt_1_xl.jpg
http://www.jw.org/en/publications/books/good-news-from-god/why-god-allows-evil-and-suffering/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/03/reflection-why-does-god-allow-evil.html



"Did God create evil?"
At first it might seem that if God created all things, then evil must have been created by God. However, evil is not a “thing” like a rock or electricity. You cannot have a jar of evil. Evil has no existence of its own; it is really the absence of good. For example, holes are real but they only exist in something else. We call the absence of dirt a hole, but it cannot be separated from the dirt. So when God created, it is true that all He created was good. One of the good things God made was creatures who had the freedom to choose good. In order to have a real choice, God had to allow there to be something besides good to choose. So, God allowed these free angels and humans to choose good or reject good (evil). When a bad relationship exists between two good things we call that evil, but it does not become a “thing” that required God to create it.

Lingering questions
There remain many unanswered questions on which the Scriptures are simply silent. How could a morally pure creature rebel against God? Why did the other angels join the revolt? When did all of this happen?
Even though Christians don’t know all the answers, we do know the God who does. And we know that “the reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.

Adam, Eve and Satan
PHOTO: Adam, Eve and Satan
God did not create evil, but He allowed it. If He had not allowed evil, we would be worshipping Him out of obligation, not by a choice of our own will.
If God had not given Adam and Eve the choice, they would have essentially been robots, simply doing what they were programmed to do.
Posted by Wickedbutterflly, Traditional Art / Mixed Media / Fantasy, ©2013-2015 Wickedbutterflly
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2UIBXmg_twk/VRoTKWqV1HI/AAAAAAAAfpg/8p2pAaNt4F0/s1600/adam_and_eve_by_wickedbutterflly-d5rc04v.jpg
http://fc05.deviantart.net/fs71/i/2013/012/0/6/adam_and_eve_by_wickedbutterflly-d5rc04v.jpg
http://wickedbutterflly.deviantart.com/art/Adam-And-Eve-348240559
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/03/reflection-did-god-create-evil.html



'The pattern of sound teaching'
The “pattern of sound teaching” is the deposit given to Timothy by Paul (“which you have heard from me”). This “good thing which was committed to you” by Paul was committed to all in the power of the Holy Spirit. God has given this pattern to Timothy and Paul and US!

The “pattern of sound teaching” is what we call the Bible. To Timothy the “sound teaching” are described as being the message preached by Paul, the Gospel. Since Paul’s preaching rests on the foundation of the Old Testament, we can interpret this as a direction to guard the entire Bible!

These doctrines have depth that must be noted. Paul refers to the "deep truths of the faith" and how they must be held on to with a clear conscience (1 Timothy 3:9). The wonder of these gospel truths is that our understanding and appreciation of them grow deeper as we plumb their depths. That was Paul's experience.

As we continue to relate with Him, we will also be in touch with the faith - comprising doctrine, liturgy and lifestyle. These are built on the fundamental relationship that we have with Jesus. Without this, all else will lack life and meaning.

The Bible is the source of 'pattern of sound teaching' - It is the model of pure, wholesome doctrine (by the founder of the Methodist movement John Wesly)
PHOTO: The Bible is the source of 'pattern of sound teaching' - It is the model of pure, wholesome doctrine (by the founder of the Methodist movement John Wesly)
Photo by Christian Sittel
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-CNLemVEuz2M/VQQIOolJhFI/AAAAAAAAfhk/30tDJdeY9fs/s1600/eg47_left_and_ri_i000006.jpg
http://ladyev.com/eg47/eg47_left_and_ri_i000006.jpg
http://www.vebidoo.de/christian+sittel/fotos
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/03/reflection-pattern-of-sound-teaching.html



'I know whom I have believed'
Knowing and Believing
Paul uses two verbs: know and believe. We can use these verbs for a body of knowledge, or to refer to someone. It is one thing to say that you believe in the theory of gravity: That if you threw a ball upwards, it will eventually fall to the ground. It is another thing to say that you believe your uncle or your sister. The first is knowing a fact; the other is knowing a person. The latter has to do with personal knowledge arising from a relationship. Here, Paul makes it clear that his knowledge and faith is in the person of Christ. He began to believe in Jesus after the risen Christ encountered him on the road to Damascus. Paul stumbled and fell when he was blinded by the light of Jesus.

Salvation
PHOTO: Salvation [6]
Romans 10:9-10. “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Sinner’s Prayer:
Dear God in heaven, I come to you in the name of Jesus. I acknowledge to You that I am a sinner, and I am sorry for my sins and the life that I have lived; I need your forgiveness.

I believe that your only begotten Son, Jesus Christ shed His precious blood on the cross at Calvary and died for my sins, and I am now willing to turn from my sin.
You said in Your Holy Word, Romans 10:9 that if we confess the Lord our God and believe in our hearts that God raised Jesus from the dead, we shall be saved.
Right now I confess Jesus as the Lord of my soul. With my heart, I believe that God raised Jesus from the dead. This very moment I accept Jesus Christ as my own personal Savior and according to His Word, right now I am saved.

Thank you Jesus for your unlimited grace which has saved me from my sins. I thank you Jesus that your grace never leads to license, but rather it always leads to repentance. Therefore Lord Jesus transform my life so that I may bring glory and honor to you alone and not to myself.

Thank you Jesus for dying for me and giving me eternal life.
Amen.


If you just said this prayer and you meant it with all your heart, we believe that there is a great possibility that you just got saved and are born again. You may ask, “Now that I am saved, what is next?” First of all, you need to get into a bible-based church, and study God’s Word. Once you have found a church home, you will want to become water-baptized. By accepting Christ you are baptized in the spirit, but it is through water-baptism that you show your obedience to the Lord. Water baptism is a symbol of your salvation from the dead. You were dead but now you live, for the Lord Jesus Christ has redeemed you for a price! The price was His death on the cross. May God Bless You! [6]
Posted by solaj72 in Evangelism & Soul Winning, on 21 January 2015
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https://rapturewatcher.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/the-angels-jesus-on-rapture-day.jpg
https://rapturewatcher.wordpress.com/2015/01/21/are-you-still-a-rapture-watcher-or-rapture-scoffer-decide-wisely-rapture-day-is-inevitable/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/03/reflection-i-know-whom-i-have-believed.html



Only good things come from God's hands
Only good things come from God's hands. Every trial prepares us for eternity.

The trials and difficulties that God allow in our lives do not happen by chance or coincidence; God has a purpose in all of them. Our conviction is founded on Romans 8:28.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who’ve been called according to His purpose.



God is at work in all things
PHOTO: God is at work in all things—both the good and the bad. In all that may happen, He has but one objective in mind: for our good. May this truth comfort us in our times of difficulty.
https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-zSLK10M-ogw/V4D0EmvU12I/AAAAAAAAkLs/1Mq1mAR0ZiAdEgufIH1PlqgDjMC7ulIBgCLcB/s1600/Why%2BChristians%2BDoubt.jpg
http://rbcintl.org/rw_response.php?i=jUkMjA4NTQyODEkNTAwNTAyMTc0JCQkRS1RMDcxNyRkb3dubG9hZCQxMzYkOTkxJHNnJCRodHRwOi8vd2ViMDAxLnJiYy5vcmcvcGRmL2Rpc2NvdmVyeS1zZXJpZXMvd2h5LWNocmlzdGlhbnMtZG91YnQucGRmJCQkUldJUwg0MMT
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2014/07/only-good-things-come-from-gods-hands.html



Suffering for the faith
Behind the choice of treasures is the choice of masters. Double minded pursuits (impure motives) make faithfulness impossible: “No one is able to serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. No one is able to serve God and money (possessions)" (Matthew 6:24).

God gives us strength to endure, not escape
PHOTO: God gives us strength to endure, not escape
So this is what I pray for: not a guarantee of happiness, but the strength to endure. The strength to go on when I feel like I can’t take another step. The strength to trust when I am filled with doubt and fear. The strength to stand firm when everything in me is crying out to give in. The strength to bear my responsibilities cheerfully and well, not with bitterness or grumbling resignation. The strength to persevere in the faith to the end. The strength to rejoice, even as I mourn. The strength to seek God’s face, to find my security in him.
Text posted by Jean Williams on 27 November, 2013
http://matthiasmedia.com/briefing/2013/11/gods-gifts-in-suffering-6-god-gives-us-strength-to-endure-not-escape/

Picture posted by Erik Kieser, Fearmastery Blog
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https://fearmastery.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/helpless-3.jpg
https://fearmastery.wordpress.com/tag/depression/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/07/reflection-suffering-for-faith.html



Useful to the Lord
2 Timothy 2:21: "If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work"

Cleansed and made holy, ready to do good work for the Lord. The Lord cannot and will not use dirty or blunt instruments. God's promises and grace was abused in the medieval period. There were priests who were presumptuous of got drunk while presiding over the Eucharist (Christian service commemorating the Last Supper). Or they were living in sin and yet led in Holy Communion. Would God still work through the ritual and bless His people?

Useful to the Lord
PHOTO: Useful to the Lord
If we are to be useful to God, we have to be holy instruments. The biblical work "holy" means "to be set apart". A holy instrument is set apart for a particular purpose and used only for that purpose, such as a surgeon's scalpel is used to make incisions and not to drive screws or open cans. To be set apart also means that as holy instruments, we avail ourselves for the Lord's exclusive use. There cannot be more than one master, for Jesus did say: "You cannot serve both God and Money" (Matthew 6:24; Luke 16:13).
Posted by Ginger Ford Northshore Fuller Center, Jesus was a carpenter. You can be one too!
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http://www.gingerfordnorthshore.org/GetInvolved/MakeaDonation.aspx
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/08/reflection-useful-to-lord.html



Walking with the Lord
Lack of trust or faith in God's plan
Let Go and Let God. We have been struggling with giving complete control over to the Lord. Mainly this issue has been coming up because we are having trouble trusting Him wholeheartedly. We still try to control things that should be held in His hands. The Author and Finisher is the One Who pushes me toward the high goal of beautiful perfection.

Reflection - Walking with the Lord
PHOTO: Reflection - Walking with the Lord
"Since Christ wishes us to strive all our days, the man who fails half-way to victory loses his honour, even though he may have begun bravely." [7] There is no place for half-hearted attempts or half-finished races in the kingdom of God. It is not that God demands of us an impossible task. For what He demands of us, He also enables us - with divine grace.
Posted by Melanie Jean Juneau on 4 August 2014 at 8:03 a.m.
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http://associationofcatholicwomenbloggers.blogspot.sg/2014/08/peter-almost-walks-on-water-gospel.html
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/09/reflection-walking-with-lord.html



Relationship with Jesus Christ
The grace of God is further illustrated in the "trustworthy saying" Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 2:11-13. This is a series of four statements (a quatrainfour lines, especially one having alternate rhymes), probably taken from an early Christian hymn

Here is a trustworthy saying:
If we died with him,
we will also live with him;
if we endure,
we will also reign with him.
If we disown him,
he will also disown us;
if we are faithless,
he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself.


You are one with the Lord. His future is your future and his future is very good!

We who have acknowledged Christ before others cannot unacknowledge him. We who have died with Christ cannot un-die. We who have been born again cannot be unborn. If you were to deny him, as Peter did three times, Jesus won’t disown you, for he cannot disown himself.

How sad is it that people keep trying to come up with some fatal sin that Jesus did not die for!

God gave Man the choice to be with him in heaven for all eternity.That choice is made by having a relationship with Jesus Christ.
PHOTO: God gave Man the choice to be with him in heaven for all eternity. That choice is made by having a relationship with Jesus Christ.
There are those who confess Christ and those who deny him. If you have denied him, you may yet confess him, but if you have confessed him, you cannot deny him – at least not to the point where he would deny you.
If we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself (2 Timothy 2:13).
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http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/10/reflection-relationship-with-jesus.html



Biblical balance
Some get into a position that one is saved solely by the irresistible grace of God and the believer is like the passive kitten. On the other hand, others hold an extreme position of human response and responsibility that marginalises divine sovereign grace. Such heresies are wrong teaching arising from unbalanced Bible interpretation.

Paul held a biblical balance and poise that emphasises both the sovereignty of God's gracious choice of those who are saved as well as the need for believers to respond to that grace and to act responsibly. He reiterated this in other letters. For example in Philippians 2:12-13, he declared that God is at work in us to enable us to choose and act, but at the same time he urged his readers to "work out your salvation with fear and trembling."

Biblical balance
PHOTO: Biblical balance
Defective forms of Christianity are produced when we lose scriptured balance. We may end up in an apathy of the flesh (careless, presumptuous and light-hearted attitude to sin) or an activism driven by the flesh (neurotic and restless self-effort for self-justification) - and both forms are prevalent in the church today.
Picture posted by Mishkin Berteig (Real Agility) on 12 August 2015
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http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/11/reflection-biblical-balance.html



Approval of a good workman
The good workman of Scripture will not spare any effort in his study and application of God's Word but "making every effort with haste, eagerness and zeal".
Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing [rightly handling and skillfully teaching] the Word of Truth.

Make Bible study a major priority. It is a matter of life and death. God commands His servants, “Study to show yourself approved before God.” (2 Timothy 2:15, Treasury of Scripture) Nothing will help us more to please God than to handle carefully, correctly and earnestly God's written word. When we have done what God expects us to do, the outcome will be fulfilling and satisfying. It leads to the ultimate goal of eternal life.

It is not the bee's touching on the flower that gathers honey, but her abiding for a time upon them, and drawing out the sweet. It is not he that reads most, but he that meditates most on divine truth, that will prove the choicest, stronger Christian.
PHOTO: Joseph Hall, a 17th century English bishop, aptly said, "It is not the bee's touching on the flower that gathers honey, but her abiding for a time upon them, and drawing out the sweet. It is not he that reads most, but he that meditates most on divine truth, that will prove the choicest, stronger Christian."
Posted by addtoyourfaith on 30 June 2015
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http://addtoyourfaith.tumblr.com/post/132991782/revelations-1-3-blessed-who-reads
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/11/reflection-approval-of-good-workman.html



Workman of the Word
May the conclusion of the beautiful Psalms 19:14 be our prayer: “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer.
"We pray that we do not outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside are full of hypocrisy and wickedness” (Matthew 23:28).

We should do our best to be a good workman in the handling of the Word of God. A good workman is one who does his work with great care and diligence.
PHOTO: We should do our best to be a good workman in the handling of the Word of God. A good workman is one who does his work with great care and diligence.
Posted by audraohm on 18 February 2015, Ruth gleaning in the fields of Boaz
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http://audraohm.com/2015/02/18/how-god-used-5-ordinary-women-in-the-bible-for-extraordinary-things/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2015/12/reflection-workman-of-word.html



Double duty of Christians
John Stott summarises what is required to grow into holiness - fleeing from sin and pursuing righteousness:
"This double duty of Christians - negative and positive - is the consistent, reiterated teaching of Scripture. Thus, we are to deny ourselves and follow Christ. We are to put to death our earthly members and to set our minds on heavenly things. We are to crucify the flesh and to walk in the Spirit. It is the ruthless rejection of the one in combination with the relentless pursuit of the other."

John Stott summarises what is required to grow into holiness
PHOTO: John Stott summarises what is required to grow into holiness - fleeing from sin and pursuing righteousness. It is the ruthless rejection of the one in combination with the relentless pursuit of the other which Scripture enjoins (instruct or urge (someone) to do something) upon us as the secret of holiness.
Painting by Konstantin_Flavitsky - Christian Martyrs in the Coliseum
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https://sarwataj.wordpress.com/2014/09/04/the-monk-tells-of-nero-35/
https://sarwataj.wordpress.com/2014/09/04/the-monk-tells-of-nero-35/konstantin_flavitsky_christian_martyrs_in_colosseum-christian-martyrs-in-the-coliseum/#main
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/01/reflection-double-duty-of-christians.html



Misplaced Love
People in the last days will love the wrong things and thus damage themselves and society. New Testament scholar Ben Witherington III terms this a "vicious-person list" that shows "the full-blown manifestation of self-centredness and self-love" in the last days.

A major theme in Paul's description of terrible people is misplaced love.
PHOTO: A major theme in Paul's description of terrible people is misplaced love. People in the last days will love the wrong things and thus damage themselves and society. "The full-blown manifestation of self-centredness and self-love" in the last days.
Picture posted by Asensio Piqueras on Sunday, 12 May 2013 at 6:45 AM
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http://missilabas.blogspot.sg/2013/05/necesidad-de-contar.html
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/03/reflection-misplaced-love.html



Human Conduct
There are increasing demands from church members, growing consumerism, loss of loyalty and respect, and increasing individualism  and self-centredness that threaten true spirituality and community.

We read the news and are horrified by what would have been unthinkable and grossly shocking only a few generations ago. Factories adding cheap but dangerous substances to milk products for children - causing fatal harm to health, out of extreme greed. Mothers abusing their children in unimaginable ways. Wicked men setting up a dating website for married people to promote adultery - and making unholy money in the process.

There are larger forces that are re-shaping modern values, habbits and behaviour.
PHOTO: There are larger forces that are re-shaping modern values, habits and behaviour. We read the news and are horrified by what would have been unthinkable and grossly shocking only a few generations ago. What is the world coming to?

Posted by Aya Nader (Egyptian Streets) on 25 January 2016 - "Egyptian soldiers beat a female protester during clashes at Tahrir Square (January 2011), pulling up her abaya and dragging her through the street. The protester screams in pain as she is beaten with poles by Egyptian security forces."

Posted by WorldTribune.com on Wednesday, 6 February 2013 - Ms. Bahgat, a human resources manager, cited the November 2012 attack by hundreds of men who tore the clothes off a woman demonstrator in Tahrir. Diana Eltahawy, a researcher for Amnesty International, said. “Tens if not hundreds of men surrounding the victims with countless hands tearing-off clothes and veils, unzipping trousers and groping breasts, nipples and backsides.”
Photo: Reuters

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http://egyptianstreets.com/2016/01/25/political-storm-a-five-year-timeline-of-events-in-egypt-since-25jan/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/03/reflection-human-conduct.html



Have Nothing to Do with Terrible Characteristics of People
"But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God - having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people" (2 Timothy 3:1-5).

Paul's list of the characteristics of the people of the last days is a horrible list indeed. It has become increasingly true and evident in our modern age. In the days of Paul, such people were already present and did much damage to the church. They found their way into the Christian communities.

Pray that we "Have nothing to do with them", the characteristics of the people of the last days but to be holy before the Lord, and spiritually separate from this world.

Pray for repentance of our sin and look to the Lord’s grace for victory through the crucified and risen lamb. Let us realize that we can be in the world and not of the world at the same time!

All must be ever learning to know the Lord. Seek the truth as it is in Jesus. Although the spirit of error may be let loose for a time, Satan can deceive the nations and the churches no further, and no longer, than God will permit.

'Have nothing to do with them'
PHOTO: "Have nothing to do with them" (2 Timothy 3:5)
Paul's list of the characteristics of the people of the last days is a horrible list indeed. It has become increasingly true and evident in our modern age. In the days of Paul, such people were already present and did much damage to the church. They found their way into the Christian communities. They visited homes and misled "weak-willed women".
Picture posted by Modello Awesome Inc..
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http://arteinme.blogspot.sg/p/blog-page.html
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/04/reflection-have-nothing-to-do-with.html



Attitudes, Motives and Conduct
Paul states: "People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God - having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them." (
2 Timothy 3:1-5)

Self-love is the spring of all the other items in the list. Self-love is the basic problem in the human condition. It comes naturally to sinful man. For sinful people, the self is in the centre of the universe. Others are used to serve the self. Even God is employed to fulfill the wishes of the self and to ensure the comfort and significance of the sinful self.

Greed is portrayed shamelessly as a virtue
Many people say that money makes the world go around. In some sense this is true because money is at the root of a lot of human behaviour these days. We do live in a money-crazed world. It is greed that makes businessmen adulterate (contaminate) milk and other food products, build dangerous buildings with inferior material, devise elaborate schemes to cheat people. Love of money makes people forget compassion and kindness and tempts them to do all kinds of evil. Greed is the worship of money and reflects slavery to it.

The Christian life is lived not by reflex responses conditioned by carrot and sticks but by choice made according to the truth and love of God. It often involves suffering, deprivation, delayed gratification, patience and endurance. "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world" (John 16:33).

Led a life that is pleasing to the Lord. This require the efforts to ask the Lord to help us to stop those acts of terribleness. Although we still sins but the Holy Spirit is able to cleanse us so that we have a better conduct towards God. Repent and trust the Lord. Repent and believe the gospel.

Commit ourselves to God and pray for freedom from sins and self-love, and to give us victory, keep Satan away from us and help us to flee from him successfully. Pray that we will do God's will and led a life that is pleasing to God.

he full-blown manifestation of self-centredness and self-love
PHOTO: A "vicious-person list" that shows "the full-blown manifestation of self-centredness and self-love" in the last days.
Picture posted by Chiang Mai-Wandering on 22 January 2016
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http://www.chiangmai-wandering.com/small-things-and-thep-doll-craze/
http://www.veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/03/reflection-misplaced-love.html
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/04/reflection-attitudes-motives-and-conduct.html



How Paul's life is different
The challenge for Christians is not only to lament how the way of the world in the last days has sunk to deplorable new levels, but also to resolve to be different from ungodly people in the world. Christians are to be different from the apostate false teachers and the people of the last days who were like them.

Paul mentioned some of the key differences in 2 Timothy 3:10-11.

A problem that is evident; our faith and trust in Christ is always low and insufficient to be useful in carrying out the will of the Lord. We tend to fall away rapidly in order to look after our needs when encounter with unpleasant circumstances, be it physical health or financial matters. We need help from God to strengthen our faith and trust in Him every moment in our life.

What is acquired and learned, regarding the terrible characteristics of people of the last days, must be discarded. They are to be replaced by practicing having integrity and faithfulness to God in everything we do. Only by this way can we stop following the terrible lifestyle of the people of the world and do the deeds that are pleasing to God. With the Holy Spirit working in us, we will be guided to prioritize doing God's will first, just like Paul's way of life.

Who leads the church? The Apostle Paul, one of the most important leaders of early Christianity, understood very well that he was not the leader of the churches he founded; Jesus Christ was.<br>The challenge for Christians is not only to lament how the way of the world in the last days has sunk to deplorable new levels, but also to resolve to be different from ungodly people in the world.
PHOTO: Who leads the church? The Apostle Paul, one of the most important leaders of early Christianity, understood very well that he was not the leader of the churches he founded; Jesus Christ was.
The challenge for Christians is not only to lament how the way of the world in the last days has sunk to deplorable new levels, but also to resolve to be different from ungodly people in the world.
Picture posted by Jack Zavada on 12 December 2014 - Book of Titus
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http://christianity.about.com/od/newtestamentbooks/a/Book-Of-Titus.htm
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/05/reflection-how-pauls-life-is-different.html



Spiritual Mentors
Throughout the years I have had many mentors who have influenced my life, both dead and live, in the soul (mind) and body areas of my life, but there is only one who has also significantly impacted me in the spiritual area of my life (Jesus Christ).

The giant amongst mentors, taken from the most popular and best selling motivational book ever written - The Bible. 12 powerful quotations from Christ Jesus with additional commentary from Peter G. James Sinclair.

Nothing Is Impossible If You Have Faith (Matthew 17:20)
"You didn't have enough faith," Jesus told them. "I assure you, even if you had faith as small as a mustard seed you could say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there', and it would move. Nothing would be impossible."

Spiritual Mentors
PHOTO: Spiritual Mentors
Mentors have influenced our lifes, both dead and live, in the soul (mind) and body areas of our life, but there is only one who has also significantly impacted us in the spiritual area of our life. He is our Lord Jesus Christ.
Picture posted by Sarah on 3 January 2016
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http://fitnfaster.com/ironman-or-bust-was-a-bust/
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/06/reflection-spiritual-mentors.html



Experiencing God (1)
Pray for the Holy Spirit, to help us understand God's Word in the Scripture. Help us to realise its meaning, applies it to a situation so that it suddenly becomes alive!

Let the Voice of His Word speak directly to you!
PHOTO: Let the Voice of His Word speak directly to you!
You can read a Scripture all your life without realising its meaning, until the Holy Spirit opens it to you and brings it to life! It's the voice of His Word when He gives it to you personally or He gives it to you in an answer. He brings it to life, applies it to a situation and it suddenly becomes alive! It's no longer just mere words, or words that just run through your head, but all of a sudden you really get the point!

Have you ever read a passage and all of a sudden some verse or Scripture or word just hits you, "That's for me! That's the answer!"? God couldn't have spoken any more emphatically if He'd yelled it out or screamed it in your ear! It may have been written for somebody else 5,000 years ago, yet, all of a sudden, it hits you personally. The Holy Spirit grabbed ahold of that arrow, pulled back the bow and cut you to the heart!

He only has to speak the Word and it can unlock a whole situation and give you the key that unlocks the door that reveals the whole Truth! If there's a Scripture that fits the situation, He will give you the Scripture, the Word! He will use His Own Word to give you the answers. Thank the Lord for His Word!
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Reflection - Experiencing God (4)
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012





Reference
[1] From "Faithful to the end" A Preacher's Exposition of 2 Timothy, Copyright © 2014 by Robert M. Solomon, ISBN 978-1-62707-241-0, PART THREE: UNLIKE THE WORLD, Chapter 9 "Christian Character in a Terrible World" (2 Timothy 3:10-17), Page 137.

[2] John Chrysostom, Homily 1 on 2 Timothy, 1:6, trans. Philip Schaff, Nicene and Post-Nicene Father, ed. Philip Schaff, first series, vol. 13 (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing, 1889). Revised and edited for New Advent by Kevin Knight. http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/230701.htm.

[3] How to Identify the One Thing You Were Born to Do, http://www.nextavenue.org/how-identify-one-thing-you-were-born-do/, by Steve Olsher on 19 November 2013.

[4] What does "communion of the saints" mean in the ancient creeds?,
http://www.gotquestions.org/communion-of-the-saints.html, © Copyright 2002-2015 Got Questions Ministries, www.gotquestions.org - Bible Questions Answered.

[5] Communion of saints, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communion_of_saints, From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, Wikipedia®, last modified on 17 May 2015, at 22:48.

[6] Rapture: The Blessed Hope, MARANATHA TRUMPETER, Posted by solaj72 in Evangelism & Soul Winning, on 21 January 2015, https://rapturewatcher.wordpress.com/2015/01/21/are-you-still-a-rapture-watcher-or-rapture-scoffer-decide-wisely-rapture-day-is-inevitable/.

[7] Calvin, The Second Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians and the Epistles to Timothy, Titus and Philemon, 307.

NIV, New International Version, Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

2 Timothy 2:13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+2%3A13&version=NIV

2 Timothy 2:15 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+2%3A15&version=NIV

2 Timothy 2:21 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+2%3A21&version=NIV

2 Timothy 3:1-5 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+3%3A1-5&version=NIV

2 Timothy 3:5 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+3%3A5&version=NIV

2 Timothy 3:10-11 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+3%3A10-11&version=NIV

2 Timothy 3:10-17 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+3%3A10-17&version=NIV

Acts 9:15-16) - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+9%3A15-16%29&version=NIV

Deuteronomy 5:29 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy+5%3A29&version=NIV

Ephesians 2:10 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+2%3A10&version=NIV

Isaiah 54:13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Isaiah+54%3A13&version=NIV

John 1:12-13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+1%3A12-13&version=NIV

John 4:7-15 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+4%3A7-15&version=NIV

John 16:33 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+16%3A33&version=NIV

Luke 16:13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+16%3A13&version=NIV

Matthew 6:24 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+6%3A24&version=NIV

Matthew 17:20 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+17%3A20&version=NIV

Matthew 23:28 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+23%3A28&version=NIV

Philippians 2:12-13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Philippians+2%3A12-13&version=NIV

Philippians 4:13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Philippians+4%3A13&version=NIV

Psalms 19:14 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalms+19%3A14&version=NIV

Revelation 21:22–27 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Revelation+21%3A22%E2%80%9327&version=NIV

Romans 5:10 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+5%3A10&version=NIV

Romans 8:28 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+8%3A28&version=NIV

Romans 10:9 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+10%3A9&version=NIV

Romans 10:9-10 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+10%3A9-10&version=NIV