Ever wonder what God might have to say to YOU today? Here are things to ponder, and things to receive into your heart. If you have a question, put it in the comments. I respond as much as I can.

A note for all my readers: I've been experimenting with YouTube videos for Bible teaching, and now I'm working my way through the New Testament. I encourage you to subscribe to my YouTube channel for better coverage. I'm still writing, of course, and my written posts appear here.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Psalm 23--"Forever in the House of the LORD."

Psalm 23 is probably the most well-known Psalm of all. In its 6 verses, it encompasses all of the believer's life. Although it's in the Old Testament, New Testament doctrine shines through its words, and testifies to life with God to all of us who believe in the Bible as the Word of God. Today I want to share some insights on Psalm 23. Hope you enjoy:
First, the Psalm itself:

Psalms 23: The LORD, the Psalmist's Shepherd. A Psalm of David.
1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters.
3 He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake.
4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life, And I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. 

1. The thought here is the same as John 10 (the whole chapter is full of blessing and power), but from the opposite perspective, where Jesus says, "I am the Good Shepherd:" David is looking up at the LORD; Jesus is looking at His sheep, because He is the Shepherd (Think about that. Jesus is declaring Himself to be the LORD of the sheep). He said, "I am the Good Shepherd." He is directing our thoughts to passages like this one, Psalm 23. 

2. Jesus ALSO said, (John 10:27-30): "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give them eternal life, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. "I and the Father are one." 
The punchline, of course, is that Jesus actually SAYS, I am The LORD, the Shepherd when He says, "I and the Father are One." The Jews understood this quite well. They "Picked up stones to stone Him." What this means to you is that when you read the 23rd Psalm, you can as well put Jesus Christ in the slot, "The LORD" as the Father. They are united. 

3. The entire Psalm is about His presence. He is THERE. He is never absent from your life once you turn to Him. You may not always feel Him, and you almost never see Him, but He really is right there. He is never absent. 
Later in the Scriptures, He says, Isaiah 43: 1 But now thus says the LORD, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. 2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. 3 For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. These are the same ideas. God is WITH you. JESUS the LORD is with you. Therefore the corollary is also true. He is never NOT with you. He is always there.

4. The entire Psalm is also about His care. In every circumstance, the Living Lord, the God-Man who died to give you everlasting life, iis there, always caring, always watching, always guiding. That's why David could say: "The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want (lack)." He's there. He cares. He sees and knows every thing through which you go in this life, and He will be with you into the endless days of forever.

More to come later.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Major Announcement:

To everyone who reads this blog, or watches the videos I produce, effective immediately, I will no longer put my YouTube videos on this blog. I will instead write individual blog posts. I will, however, continue to make videos, which you can find announced elsewhere and posted on YouTube.

The reason is as follows: I understand that in many parts of the world, YouTube is blocked. That means whenever I post a blog presentation on YouTube, there are many people who are locked out. I did not fully understand this until today, so as of today, I'm splitting my ministry into two: written material and videos.  I will notify folks about both types of media--written and video,  on my facebook page (I'm registered there as stevencbradley), on Twitter (registered there as stevencbradley as well), and a couple other social media accounts. The purpose is to give everyone a chance to read what I speak and write.

For those who do watch the YouTube videos, I urge you to subscribe to my YouTube channel so that you will know whenever they come out. I also post them on other social media, as I've indicated.
For those who cannot watch, but have the freedom to read my posts, I do not post political material on this blog, nor do I write anything that I believe is disloyal or problematic if you live in a country that has issues with political posts.

As you know, if you've followed this blog for any length of time, the purpose of the material I write and produce is to lift up Jesus Christ, His love, His grace, and your opportunity to live with Him forever and follow Him now. If the blog and video together will bless more of you, then I consider this a great decision.

Comments are welcome. In fact, comments are appreciated, since I'm taking this step without full knowledge of your circumstances.

God bless you all, and may He fill your life with His presence and love.