What’s Behind the Motivation


Tower of Babel

  “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
Psalm 139:23-24

Personally, in writing this blog, I was in need of an honest inspection behind the motivation for sharing this biblical truth. Is it because I wish to make a name for myself? Do I believe I possess knowledge no one else has privy (Romans 12: 3-5)?  Or do I sincerely desire to shed light on a subject which may help both you and me. It still may benefit you, if it is the truth, but if my motivation is for the sake of appearance or making a good impression, I will suffer losing my reward found in Christ.
Philippians 1: 15-18

Examples of Wrong Motives
There are two examples the Word gives concerning someone doing what they think is right but with wrong motives. One example is how an unrepentant nonbeliever may do good works and even evoke the name of Christ, but has never come to faith in God’s salvation and Christ’s sacrifice ( Matthew 7:22-23 ). They know about Him, but have never come into a personal relationship with Him. The other is the believer, who testifies of Christ with wrong motives, through self-effort and vain-glory. (Philippians 1:15-19)

Scriptural Examples
Scriptural examples of this are found in both the old and new testament. In 1 Samuel, King Saul tried to battle the Philistines by making his own sacrifice and through self-effort, instead of  trusting and waiting on the Lord. 
The other, is found in Genesis 11; how a people attempted to reach heaven by building a tower, for self- glory, and for the purpose of making a name for themselves. In 1 Corinthians 11 in the new testament, there were Christians who were misrepresenting Christ by continuing to sin, refusing His discipline and unrepentant.
Genesis 111 Corinthians 11: 23-34 ,   1 Samuel 13

 “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or empty pride, but in humility consider others more important than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Philippians 2:3-4

Examining Our Self-Motive
Examining our motivation is very important .  In everything there can be a hidden element of vain glory.  I need to allow the Lord to examine my heart to determine my motive, whether it be praying (Matthew 6:6), teaching , or even doing a good deed. It would be prudent of me to first ask myself the question, “who is this really benefiting,  or how is this honoring and serving the Lord?”
(Psalm 127:1 Corinthians 3:11-15, Jeremiah 17: 9-10)

One scripture ascertains to this concept; whereby, even if I were to give everything up and even sacrifice myself in the process, it is in vain, if God’s love and purpose is not the motivating factor.
(1 Corinthians 13:3).

Christ’s Righteousness or Our Own
Our righteousness is nothing compared to the righteousness required to approach a Holy God. But Praise God, we look to Christ’s righteousness alone, who has given us entrance into the presence of God through His sacrifice. All our righteousness are like filthy rags, and I can only be made whole through faith in Christ’s righteousness.
Isaiah 64:6( Proverbs 2:6-9)

Personal Testimony
When I was young I sought to do what was right in my own eyes. In the beginning I just wanted to serve the Lord, content for Him to receive all the glory. Then, little by little pride crept in and God’s purpose paled in comparison to my own. It’s possible to be at times, ignorant of our own desire to serve Christ. The Lord was merciful by allowing all my work to go up in flames, while restoring me back to Himself, once again, cleansing my motivation and purpose.
I would like to say, I never again got off track, but I have, again and again. I realize, I cannot trust my own heart, but try earnestly, to be cognizant of every word and action,bringing all under the Holy Spirit’s scrutiny and examination.
( 2 Corinthians 10:5)
1 John 1:9, Romans 8:1-2  James 7: 13-20
(Isaiah 55:9, Jeremiah 17:9, Proverbs 3: 5-6, Ephesians 2:10, Jeremiah 29:11,
Genesis 11:1-9, 1 Peter 4:18, 1 Corinthians 3: 10-15, Deuteronomy 30

Representatives of Christ Jesus
As never before, as believers and servants of Christ, we need to be in check as to how we are representing our Lord. The best preparation is by reading the Word, Listening to His Voice, and bringing everything to Him in prayer. As believers, we are first accountable to Christ, then ourselves, then the Body, and also to those who do not yet believe.
(2 Corinthians 10:17, 1 Peter 5:5 James 5:16)

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Appealing to the Throne of Grace


Luke 18:1-8

court

“And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?”

Today, It is the worse of times and the best of times with a present spiritual revolution in overthrowing the strongholds of principalities and powers on high.
(Ephesians 6:12)

Our Nation’s Strongholds

For a long time, governmental policies, corrupt leadership and power hungry politicians have held an upper hand in dismantling our constitution and perverting justice. But now we are eyewitnesses that in the fullness of time God is hearing our prayers, exposing the darkness as we turn back towards the light.

For many years, God’s people have prayerfully interceded, concerning the false indoctrination in our schools, the lost of innocent human life in abortion mills, the attack on free speech and religious liberty and the perversion of justice in our legislative branch and judicial system. Roles have reversed. Legislators are misrepresenting the constitution and rendering judgments while the Judiciary seeks to legislate law.

The enemy has occupied these high places of authority too long and in the fullness of time God has ordained to act on behalf of our prayers.

A Call to Prayer

Many times, I have heard the call to prayer in the scripture,  2 Chronicles 7: 14 recited with one important phrase left out. Here is the scripture in its entirety:

 “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

To Seek God’s face is to seek His presence. In this verse God promises if we turn back to Him by desiring His presence and repent of our sinful ways, He will hear our petitions and restore us again to live righteously and restore our land.    Where we live is the place where we are to occupy for His purpose and glory. What usually is left out as part of this conditional promise is this phrase:

                   “ turn from our wicked ways”.

How can we begin to intercede for the injustices and sins of our nation when we refuse to acknowledge our own?

Representing Christ

It is a serious matter to say we believe in Jesus and represent Christ and continue sinning. When we accept Jesus Christ as Savior we also except Him as Lord. God cannot hear our prayers when we refuse to hear him. (Psalm 66:18-20)

Many of us in the body of Christ are presently resembling the world. Yet, we are called out of the world’s standards to embrace God’s Kingdom principles:
(2 Corinthians 6:14-18)

“The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
Galatians 5:19-21

Not of this World

We are in this world but not of this world and are admonished to come out. We are not to blend in and compromise nor be politically correct in order to save ourselves.  We are to stand firm in our faith representing our Lord by practicing His righteousness. The world is looking for genuineness. If we blend in with the world then we obscure His light and the Truth.  (John 17:15-21)

                                                            His Word is Truth
Many in the body do not read the Word of God and are led astray.
(Hosea 4:6, 1 Peter 2: 2-3).  We need to return to our first love and place Christ first above all ambitions and desires (Revelation 2:4).

God Judges His People

Judgment first begins with the household of God. When we recognize our own sin and repent, we then can see how to intercede for the sin we see in our nation and others.
(1 Peter 4:17, Matthew 7:5)

My Testimony of God’s Grace and Mercy

Almost 40 years ago I was ensnared by the devil by changing my ambitions to serve Christ to serving myself.  It was a subtle process. My heart was to follow Him but along the way I became enamored with building a ministry where I was also tempted to share in His glory. It soon developed into making a name for myself. Like those who began building a tower to heaven, I became confused and my works were burned up while I escaped through the trial of fire and God’s discipline and judgment
( James 5:9, 1 Corinthians 3: 12-15). God had my attention and through His mercy and grace I saw my sins and repented.

“Before I was afflicted, I went astray, but now I obey your word. You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees.” Psalm 119:67-68

No Condemnation is Christ Jesus

Ephesians 1: 13-14

I believed at the time I could lose my salvation and when the devil began to accuse me, I accepted his accusations. I didn’t understand until much later there is no condemnation in Christ Jesus, and when we confess our sins God is faithful to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (Romans 8:1-2, 1 John 1:9) In my trial I experienced God’s judgment and discipline but also His forgiveness and restoration. If we are to be effective witnesses, representing His righteousness, we must respond to His discipline and turn from our wicked ways.  (Hebrews 15: 5-6)

How are we any different from the world when we allow circumstances to shape our faith. Do we doubt and fear? Do we wink at sexual immoralities and excuse it by practicing it ourselves?

This is the time, we, the body of Jesus Christ need to get serious and surrender all for His sake.  We need to truly represent Him and receive the power from on high as witnesses and instruments of Christ to shine as lights to a generation and a world who are seeking to know the Truth.

 

Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father,

Where there is hypocrisy, let there be straightforwardness. Where there is fear, let there be courage. Where there is dishonesty in presenting the gospel, in any way, let there be integrity and your Truth, without compromise.  Lord bring us to the place where it is done not by might, nor by power but through your Holy Spirit. Lord, revive your Body today, in the precious name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, waiting for the Power from on High. to accomplish your will, this hour, this day.

 

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Accepting God’s Perfect Gift is Accepting His Love


Valentinepresent

“But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” Romans 5:8

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life”. John 3:16

I once thought it’s how I love others that determines whether or not God accepts me at any given time. But I have discovered it has nothing to do with how I love but rather how He loves and He loves me unconditionally. He loved me by sending His Son, Jesus Christ to pay the penalty for all my sins, yesterday, today and tomorrow. Now that I am confident of this truth, knowing there is nothing that can separate me from His love, ever, I feel free to love others. Romans 8: 38-39

I can not add anything to what Christ accomplished on the cross by what I do or don’t do. After He suffered the consequence for every sin, He proclaimed that the work He came to do was Finished. His love was so perfect; His Work so complete that there is nothing I can do to add to His Perfect Salvation. To do so, is to not believe in His work but my own. But all my righteous acts are filthy in comparison to His pure love which has nothing selfish attached. If it required any good works of my own, then it was in vain that Christ died, and therefore the work He came to do in reconciling me to the Father is incomplete.

So what is perfect love. Perfect love is unconditional, complete,lacking nothing. He first loved me. When I accept His unconditional love, by faith in His salvation through Jesus Christ, then I also accept His gift of eternal life. 1 John 4: 18-19

What person after given a perfect gift of love, says, I cannot accept it as it is, it’s not good enough, let me add something to it to make it more acceptable?

But we have not been given an inferior gift, but one which was taken right from the bosom and heart of God – His Beloved Son.

Now I know why the Apostle John referred to himself as the one in whom the Lord loved. He discovered His unconditional love and was content to simply accept it, and was confident in it  lest he forget. “Jesus loves me, this I know.”
John 13:23

There have been occasions while receiving a gift I’ve felt guilty or because of my pride I could not accept it unless I could give something in return. To simply receive a gift and enjoy it is hard for me. I have no problem giving gifts. In fact I delight in it.

God has given His very best through sending His Son, Jesus Christ to die for my sins, and then sending me the gift of His Holy Spirit to guide and direct me in all my ways.
John 14: 16-17

How could I say to Him, no, I can’t accept your gift unless I can give you something in return. What could I possibly give Him to equal what He has given?

What could I possibly give back to God in exchange for His Great Salvation? How could I possibly match His Love?

In all  I do or don’t do, God can’t love me any less or more because His Love is not determined by who “I am” but WHO HE IS. John 8:58, Exodus 3:14

And as I allow His Love each and every day take hold of all I say and do I pray I can express His Great Love to others. John 14: 15-17

“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,”
Ephesians 3: 14-17

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Spiritual Conception


“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” Romans 1:20

Spiritual HeartGod’s Word + Faith = New Birth

 “Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3: 3

“He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him, He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,  Children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1: 10-14

     When the angel, Gabriel appeared to Mary, he came with God’s “Word”.  She was to become the dwelling place for God’s only begotten Son- Jesus Christ. Mary was a virgin and did not know how this could be possible.  All the prophets born had an earthly father.   What the angel was telling Mary was that God Himself would be the Father. This was beyond Mary’s comprehension, but she believed and accepted “His Word”.  The moment she believed, God’s Son- Jesus Christ was conceived not only in her womb but in her heart.  If she had not believed she would not have been the dwelling place of the “One” who had left heaven to dwell with mankind. But because God knows all things, He knew she would.

     Jesus is the seed that left heaven to penetrate our heart with the “Truth”. The soil or the heart that receives the seed is the dwelling place for its development.   Every seed contains its own predestination purposed by God (Ephesians 1:11, Romans 8:29).  A seed that comes from a fig tree can only develop into a fig tree and produce fruit.  So it was with the seed that was sown in Mary’s womb – predestined to develop into the “Son of God”. 

Just as Mary received God’s Son and saw the evidence of her faith through His birth, we also, are called to be the dwelling place for God’s Son. As He abides with us and we with Him, He manifests Himself in our life (John 15:4 1:27). Our flawed nature (dna) changes into God’s divine nature (DNA) which is predisposed and predestined to develop into His image (Genesis 1:27).  God’s divine nature begins to mesh with our sinful nature until our sinful nature is less recognized as we yield to Him (Ephesians 5:18). Just as every seed that God has created is predestined to become what He has purposed, so has He predestined everyone who “Believes” to become His child.

      Our part is to believe and receive.  His part is to transform us through the work of His Holy Spirit. The soil that is cultivated by a repentant, receptive and believing heart is the heart that is covered by Christ’s blood. Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin (Hebrews 9:22).  When we receive God’s plan (Word) for reconciliation to Himself a “Holy” God, the “Seed of Truth” will not lay dormant but grow up reaching into heaven and into eternal life.  Just as the womb must be covered with blood in order to receive the implant of the father’s seed meshed with the mother’s seed, thus does it occur, spiritually.

So how does one become born again? How does one leave the dominion of this world and enter God’s Kingdom?

It is “only” through faith in God’s “Only” begotten Son who shed His blood and paid the penalty for our sins. There is only one path to birth, and one birth canal that leads to eternal life – “Jesus is that path ++++++++++++ and the father waits eagerly to “Deliver”. (John 3:16)

“The TRUTH which is conceived in the heart through faith will develop into a “new understanding” of the divine perception, transforming into the very nature of God. DF

 

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16

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Follow the Dove


dove

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Matthew 11:28

Nearing the end of his journey, the rain had subsided and Noah with patience, pondered and wondered, if indeed they would soon see land; so he sent out a dove, and on its return it carried an olive leaf as a sign the waters had withdrawn- the message of hope.

And upon the second time after leaving the safe haven of the ark, the dove did not return. Where did it go and where did it land? Where did it find its rest?

And after Jesus came up out of the waters of baptism, the heavens opened and the Spirit of God rested upon Him in the form of a dove. Matthew 3: 13-17

And as the Israelites escaped Egypt and journeyed to the Promise Land, they continued to murmur and complain in their unbelief, while the cloud covered them by day and the pillar of fire kept them warm in the cold desert night. The Lord, Himself, bent down, compassionately meeting all their needs, as the Angel of the Lord went before them and behind them every step of the way.
(Exodus 14:19,Hebrews 4:3)

“I led them with cords of human kindness, with ties of love. To them I was like one who lifts a little child to the cheek, and I bent down to feed them.” Hosea 11:14

“Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.” Hebrews 4:11

It is only in Christ’s salvation we find our rest. 

 

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