God secures those who seek His purposes

Scripture Notes on Psalm 122

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem! May they be secure who love you!  (Psalm 122:6)

God wants peace for His people. He desires peace for the city He loves. Though war and strive more often rule the day in the Middle East, God’s heart yearns for stability there.

Does yours?

When we take on the heart of God, we begin to see as He sees, feel what He feels. We begin to love what He loves and hate what He hates. We start to care about what He really cares about, and when we do, something incredible happens.

Our hearts are made secure.

Do you want greater stability in your soul? Ask God to give you His heart for the world and then act according to what He shows you. When you do, you will discover a new level of strength as you reap the benefit of this truth from God’s Word.

God secures those who seek His purposes.

-Pastor Phillip

God never stops looking after you

Scripture Notes on Psalm 121

He will not let your foot be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. (Psalm 121:3-4)

An old children’s song declares, “He’s got the whole world, in His hands; He’s got the whole wide world, in His hands…” but sometimes it doesn’t feel that way.

When hard times come, seasons of loss or dark nights of the soul, it can feel as if God isn’t really there at all, or if He is, that He must not be paying attention.

It’s in those times that the very survival of our soul depends on believing the promises of God. We hang on to all He has spoken through His Word, because this is our true and faithful anchor of hope.

The truth is, no matter how much it may seem like it, God will never abandon you! He will never check out on you! If you’re in Christ, you can take courage in any situation because of this powerful truth.

God never stops looking after you.

-Pastor Phillip

You are a part of the foundation

Scripture Notes on 1 Timothy 3

But if I should be delayed, I have written so that you will know how people ought to act in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth. (1 Timothy 3:15 HCSB)

The Bible says God has a family, a household, a group of people united under the banner of Christ who are all part of one another. This family is the Church.

But the Church does not exist only for the people inside.

It is not only a source of provision for the needs of its own, but a source of preservation for goodness and truth in the world. The Church is the bedrock, the guardian and steward of the Good News God wants to share with humanity.

That means that if you’re in Christ, you’re not just part of a club or even a family. You have a purpose and a place in something far bigger than yourself! So, when your life feels unimportant and insignificant, be encouraged by this wonderful truth.

You are a part of the foundation.

-Pastor Phillip

Jesus is your overflowing grace

Scripture Notes on 1 Timothy 1

And the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. (1 Timothy 1:14)

Paul killed Christians, yet Jesus gave him overflowing grace. Paul opposed the name of Christ as strongly as he could, yet Jesus gave him overwhelming mercy.

Why? Because that’s the kind of Savior Jesus is!

Is your faith weak? Come to Jesus.

Is your love cold? Come to Jesus.

Is your obedience lacking? Come to Jesus, and let Him work His power in your life.

Whatever the state of your heart, Jesus can make it holy by His blood. So, trust and obey Him today and let this truth be your motivation.

Jesus is your overflowing grace.

-Pastor Phillip

Jesus is your guard against all evil

Scripture Notes on 2 Thessalonians 3

But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you against the evil one. (2 Thessalonians 3:3)

Jesus warned we will have trouble in this life, but trouble and evil are not the same thing. He told us we would surely face persecution, but persecution and evil are not the same thing.

If you’re in Christ, then you also have an enemy. Satan wants to bring pain into your life so that it drains your hope and eclipses the glory of God. This is true evil, not just pain, but pain that hinders the purposes of God.

Here’s good news, though. In Christ, nothing can stop God’s purposes for you! No suffering or setback can derail His desire to bless you with a meaningful life that brings true joy to you through bringing glory to God.

This means that in Christ, you may have pain, but it has deep and lasting purpose. You may have sorrow, but it need not steal your hope.

In Christ, your life matters. You matter, and no plan for evil can ever take away God’s plan for good in your life.

In whatever season you find yourself, take courage in this truth.

Jesus is your guard against all evil.

-Pastor Phillip

God’s Word is your empowering perspective

Scripture Notes on Psalm 119:89-176

If Your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction. I will never forget Your precepts, for by them You have given me life. (Psalm 119:92-93)

Discouragement can destroy your life. When affliction arrives, often it’s not the hardness of the circumstance that’s most deadly to our soul, but the hopelessness that can so quickly set in.

Without hope, we perish.

How good is God, then, that He has given us an accessible antidote against this poison of the soul!

His Word is filled with hope.

His Word is filled with truth.

His Word is filled with all you need to have courage in any calamity.

Read it. Know it. Believe it, and watch this truth bring fresh strength to your life.

God’s Word is your empowering perspective.

-Pastor Phillip

God’s promise is your comfort

Scripture Notes on Psalm 119, 1-88

Remember your word to your servant, in which you have made me hope. This is my comfort in my affliction, that your promise gives me life. (Psalm 119:49-50)

When hard times come, where can you find hope to carry you through? Where can you turn for encouragement?

You can turn to the promises of God.

When God gives you a word, it will surely come to pass. When He makes a commitment, He will always, always keep it. When He tells you in Scripture that He will never leave you nor forsake you, He will always be true to that promise.

God remembers His word to you. Now, you remember it, too, and take heart in this truth.

God’s promise is your comfort.

-Pastor Phillip

God chose you for glory

Scripture Notes on 2 Thessalonians 2

God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth. To this He called you through our gospel, so that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 2:13-14)

Christian, never forget that God chose you.

You did not draw His attention by your efforts; He simply loved you by His grace.

You did not earn His favor by your merit; He simply called you by His mercy.

You did not convince Him with your potential; He simply pursued you because He loves you.

This means that in Christ, there’s nothing to earn, nothing to prove, and nothing to fear!

Not only that, but God saved you for a good purpose and a great destiny. He chose you to become not a slave, but a son or daughter, not a laborer, but an heir of the Kingdom.

So, if you’re in Christ you can rest in this liberating truth.

God chose you for glory.

-Pastor Phillip

God will make you worthy of His call

Scripture Notes on 2 Thessalonians 1

To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of His calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by His power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12)

You were called to a life much greater than your own. You were called to the life of Jesus, the life of the Kingdom, a life that no longer focuses on its own glory, but strives for the glory of God.

Yet, on your own merit, you are simply not qualified for that position.

Your natural resolve is not for good, but for evil. Your natural works aren’t ones of faith, but of selfishness. The name you most naturally want to glorify is not the name of Jesus, but your own.

However, if you’re in Christ, everything changes!

In Christ, your work can be guided by faith and your resolve can be driven by good.

In Christ, your goals can stop being self-centered and instead become God-centered in every way.

In Christ, God’s call for you to glorify Him is no longer an unattainable goal. Instead, it is an increasing reality.

Don’t look at your life and despair over how far you have to go. Rejoice at how far you’ve come in Christ, and let this truth give you confidence to keep going.

God will make you worthy of His call.

-Pastor Phillip

God will surely make you clean

Scripture Notes on 1 Thessalonians 5

Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; He will surely do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24)

The world leaves its mark on everyone. Broken by sin, stained by rebellion, it has a way of creeping in to even the most faithful heart.

But God always has the last word.

God calls His children to be holy and pure, sanctified and set apart, not isolated from the people of the world but insulated from its darkness. Yet, He doesn’t expect us to make it happen on our own.

Here’s good news. The same One who called you to be holy is also the One who will build that holiness within you. Because He is perfectly faithful, He is perfectly trustworthy to finish what He starts.

If you’re in Christ, it doesn’t matter what sin or struggle you’re dealing with right now; you can still have hope! All you need to do is surrender to His work and respond to His Word to you and you can rest in this truth.

God will surely make you clean.

-Pastor Phillip

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