My Sheep Hear My Voice

sheep-iiconEarly morning at the most famous church in New Zealand, and certainly the most photographed. This is the Church of The Good Shepherd on the shores of Lake Tekapo in the wild mountain country of the McKenzie Basin in the South Island.

The church was built in 1935 by a number of families farming remote hill stations in the area, originally for their own use. It has a large window behind the altar that looks out on the mountains across the lake.  Clearly, those farmers saw the magnificent country around them as evidence of the Creator’s hand, and they wanted to be reminded of that as they came to worship.

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Jesus (The Good Shepherd) said,  “The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice.

My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.”
(John 10:2-4, 27)

He also said (at John 10:11), “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”

And that is exactly what He did.

Even now, the world has not come to a full realization of what that means.

He saved every one of those who will follow Him once and for all by paying the ultimate price on the cross.  That offer of salvation is still open, and as spiritual beings we all have an eternity of life ahead of us.  How are we planning to spend it?

So many still rush blindly to destruction, thinking only of the first death, the death of the body.  Thinking, “Once that’s over, it’s all over.  May as well get the max out of this life.”  How foolish that is.  For there still remains the second death, which is the lake of fire where all who have chosen to separate themselves from God by their sin and ungodly living will dwell for eternity.

Jesus made it clear, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep…      I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.”  (John 10:7, 9)

But He will not allow sin and all its ramifications into the New Heaven and the New Earth.  Once was enough.

Think on it.

Patricia

Artwork and Products available in my Damascus Road Gallery. Or click on the images.

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Prayer For Help

deliverance-iconWho among us has not been in this situation?

Who has not felt themselves dwelling among the tents of the wicked?  In a strange land?  Surrounded by enmity to which there is seemingly no response?

David the mighty king and quintessential warrior knew this so well.  And while his fame lay in his mastery of the slingshot and the sword, he knew the most effective weapons, and in fact the only truly effective weapons, are spiritual:

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“I call on the Lord in my distress,
and He answers me.
Save me, Lord,
from lying lips
and from deceitful tongues.
What will he do to you,
and what more besides,
you deceitful tongue?
He will punish you with a warrior’s sharp arrows,
with burning coals of the broom bush.
Woe to me that I dwell in Meshek,
that I live among the tents of Kedar!
Too long have I lived
among those who hate peace.
I am for peace;
but when I speak, they are for war.”

Psalm 120.

Meshek –  a son of Japheth, the people descended from him, and their land (Russia – Scythia).
Kedar – a son of Ishmael, the people descended from him, and their land (Arabian Desert).

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Leave vengeance to the Lord.  It is His prerogative, not yours.  If you are truly walking with Him, He will take care of you and your reputation.

Sometimes the hardest thing of all is to say with Paul, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord. (Romans 12:19)    This is not an empty phrase, and it helps to remember that the desire for revenge is one of satan’s favorite mind controls.  With it, he keeps people on endless treadmills of bitterness and retaliation.

Artwork and Products available in my Damascus Road Gallery. Or click on the images.

Patricia

http://damascusroad.news

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Free Indeed

free-iconThis post carries a friendly message to the American people : “Remember your Beginnings!  Remember your heritage and the values it was founded on!”

To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”

Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”  (John 8: 31-36)

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Acrylic painting collage.

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Artwork and Products available in my Damascus Road Gallery. Or click on the images.

Patricia

http://damascusroad.news

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