Category Archives: Closeness to God,Intimacy with God; Walking with God

Blessings from YOUR Bible Study

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I recently read of a Preacher who was visiting one of his members. The lady of the house was trying to impress him about how devout she was by pointing out the large Bible on the bookshelf and talking in a very reverent way of it as “the Word of God“.   Her young son interrupted the conversation by saying, “Well, if that’s God’s book we better send it back to him because we never read it!”

 

Does this sometimes describe your life?    You mean well; you definitely want to read the Bible each day, but you never seem to benefit from this time.   It is a though you are like an automobile stuck in the snow and the more you press the pedal, the more you spin your wheels without getting you anywhere.

Allow me to share a simple study system I have used for years which will lead you to exclaim: “The Bible is a Blessing rather than a Burden.   It has opened up to me.   I am learning so much.”

 

Focus on the Following and the Bible WILL Bring Blessings

1.      CHARACTERISTICS of God.      In other words, what is this passage teaching me about God?   I read and then record the many characteristics of God from my reading.   The Bible WILL REVEAL God to you as you are looking for HIM!  For example, read Psalm 145 and list the MANY Characteristics of God.   Always bear in mind that once you learn of God, you have a personal responsibility to reflect Him to others.   Romans 8:29;    Ephesians 5:1.

 

2.      LESSONS to Learn.    I am asking the following question constantly:  “What exactly is the Holy Spirit wanting me to learn from this passage?”  For example, from Ephesians 4:15-32 God is teaching me how I am to live a life which is dramatically different from the way I lived and treated people prior to becoming a Christian. 

 

3.      PROMISE to Claim:    I am searching for any promises which God has made to the Christian. 

 

  • Is this promise for me today, or was it a specific promise given to Israel? 
  • Is there a condition attached which I must meet BEFORE God will honor His promise? 

 

4.      A COMMAND to Obey?    

 

5.      BIBLICAL  PRINCIPLE    I am very interested in discovering God’s unchanging truths.   An example of a Biblical principle can be found in Galatians 6:6-8.   This is the principle of Sowing and Reaping.  No matter what Century, Continent, or Country you live in, this truth will apply to you.  You and I WILL reap exactly what we have sown, whether it be good or bad.

 

6.      APPLICATION:        If I just read the last verses in Matthew 28:18-20 my application might look something like this:     

 

  • I need to share my faith with Carolyn, Janelle, and Linda by Saturday because God wants me to witness and He definitely desires them to go to heaven.

 

  • James 1:22 says: “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.”  So I make a commitment to making an application from my Devotions.

 

  • In my Blank Devotional Sheet it looks like this:                                                                                                                                             I need to: ______________________________   BY _______________      Because  ____________________________________.

 

7.      MEMORIZATION:      Write out one or two verses you want to memorize this week.

 

 If you would like to order this very helpful Bible Study Guide, which you an print off each day for your Personal Devotional time, it is a great tool to keep your FOCUSED on your Bible Study.   It also provides you with a permanent record of your time with God.

To place your order, please go to:  www.JimKilgoreMinistries.com  and select the Store Icon and you will receive your Bible Study Guide with-in 24 hours delivered directly to your email account.

God’s Plea to the Christian: Let’s Get Better Acquainted

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Colossians 1:10That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.”

II Peter 3:18:   “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever. Amen. “

Both of the above verses speaks of growing in the Knowledge of God!!

 

Psalm 46:10:   Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”

 

  • In December 2012, God had burdened my heart to something truly spectacular for Him in this season of life.   One of those requests was to win at least two people to Christ EVERY week of the year.
  • Another request was to get to Know God on a much deeper level than ever before.

            A lot us know ABOUT God, but do we REALLY know God?  Are we close to Him?  Is He near to our hearts?  Are we living each day with the complete awareness that God is living within us, and Sees; Knows; and is Aware of all that we Think, Say, or Do?

 

What is your desire in the “Relationship” you have with God?

 

Yes, we know ABOUT God, but this is not enough this year—for this is only INTELLECTUAL!

I want to Really Know God Intimately!!

Please turn to Psalm 42: 1This year, as I am nearer Heaven I find a yearning deep in my soul!!  I not only want to know God; but I desperately want people to truly see what a life spent with Jesus really looks like!!

 

Romans 8:29: “.. to be conformed to the image of his Son…”

 

  •   Eph.  5: 1:  “Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children.”

 

How does Scripture DESCRIBE Intimacy with God?

 

1.      John 10:11 describes one way:  A Shepherd with his Sheep.  So close to his sheep, he would be willing to die for them!

 

2.      Isaiah 54:5  &  Jer. 31:32 mentions God as The Husband  & Ephesians 5: speaks of Jesus being the Bridegroom with the Church as His Bride!!   A good husband will do anything for his wife and Family!!   There is a closeness in my marriage that no one else even comes close to Bonnie!

 

 

3.      A Parent-Child relationship. Any of us would do ANYTHING for our Children.    We love them;  want to spend time with them; 

                         Romans 8:15:     Abba lit.  “Daddy”    Do you see God as your Father?  

 Think of all He does for us as His Children.   

 

Intimacy with God WILL lead you to the place where you become known in Heaven as:

 

  1. A Friend of God as Abraham  Turn to James 2:23 please.     Class:  What was there in Abraham’s life that led God to call him His friend?      His ObedienceGen. 11:31;  Ur was highly advanced; well ahead of its time.  He ‘Willingly’ left a Beautiful and modern city in order to obey God.    

Gen. 12: 1-4;   Later, was willing to obey even though it meant the sacrifice of his Son.

 John 15:12-14

 

2.     To be known in Heaven as one : Who Walked with God”    

 Only two people in the Bible is it said of, that he walked with God!

Read  Genesis 5:22 & 24  and Genesis 6:9: 

Why do you suppose that it was only said of two men out of the 1,181 men mentioned in the Bible that Scripture says, “They walked with God?”      In a future article, we will Search the Scriptures to see what is involved in Walking with God!!

3.      To be known in Heaven as:   A Man after God’s own Heart!”   Acts 13:32.   

Today has just been the beginning to what I believe will be a Life-Changing study in ALL our lives.  

  • God desires us to walk with Him intimately;
  • God desires us to yearn and long to spend time with Him;
  • God desires us to become His close Friend as was Abraham.

It is Possible to be known in these ways, but it will not be easy!!  Will you take this journey with me this year?

Perhaps you can share with us the struggles you face in walking with God.

Pastor, How Can I REALLY Live a Life of Victory?

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Christians EVERYWHERE are asking the same Question about Victory!

 As I have traveled across America, and in several Countries, one question which I can count on being asked of me is: “Pastor, can I REALLY Live a Life of Victory as a Christian?”   This of course saddens me deeply, knowing that so many good, loving Believers are struggling to live a life of Victory.

I shall continue teaching on this subject for a few weeks, as there is an intense desire in my heart to help elevate your walk with God.   To truly walk with God is to walk in Victory.   As I pen these words, I am envisioning you sitting across my desk, asking for my counsel from your question.  May I first acknowledge your desire?  I applaud you for searching for this answer.  Now, as you and I are sitting across the desk, let us pray right now expressing this to our Father.

A Prayer to our Father for Victory

Our Father, my dear Brother/Sister in Christ has come for spiritual assistance.   They have been struggling in their walk with You.  At times they have been very close to you; yet at other times had felt distance in the relationship.   Today, we come together with a desire on our hearts.  That desire is to live a life of Victory.   We claim Psalm 37:4 where YOU Promised to give us the desires of our hearts IF we would only delight in you.  Father, our delight is in You!   You are our joy!  We love You and desperately wish to honor You with our hearts and lives.  Now we ask, and even claim the promise of receiving the desires of our hearts.  Please help my dear friend to experience a life of sustained Victory.   Amen.

It is Definitely Possible to Live in Victory!

Everyone faces difficult situations; however, there is no need to allow them to rob you of your victory and joy! This is what was happening in the Book of Philippians.  The Christians in the Church at Philippi has four major thieves robbing Christians of their Joy and Victory.  Let me show you.

  1. The first Thief of Joy is  Circumstances.

In Philippians, Paul was in jail and it appeared to many that it was a bad thing.  Not so to Paul.  The attitude Paul had, was that God allowed circumstances to enter into his life for the express purpose of leading others to Jesus.   Notice Philippians 1:12-14:  “But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel;  13So that my bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places;     14And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.”    Paul said it became a good thing that he had been arrested as he had won more people to Christ and in fact, other Christians who previously were fearful of witnessing, had become soul-winners for God.

  1. 2.      The second thief of Victory is People

Each of us have lost our joy because of People at some point in our lives.  Paul issued the prescription to overcome this thief in Philippians 2:1-3:  Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.   3Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.   4Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.

  1. 3.      The third thief Victory are Things       

People are ALWAYS wanting more! Never really satisfied. This insatiable craving will never be fully satisfied though seeking possessions.  Eleven times in this chapter Paul uses the word things.  In Philippians 3:19, Paul points out that MOST Christians “…..mind earthly things.”  Your solution is to focus on “Heavenly things”., Philippians 3:20.

  1. 4.      The fourth thief of Victory is Worry.        

Worry means to be pulled apart.  Our fears pull us in one direction while our Faith pulls us in the opposite direction.  Worry is really saying to God, “This is too big for even you God!   I have no hope!  I cannot expect any relief from heaven!   Worry is an inside job which will completely remove ALL joy and energy from your life.  However, worry is like a rocking chair in that both will provide you with something to do, yet neither will get you anywhere.

Why worry when you CAN trust our Omnipotent, Compassionate, Omnipresent Father who loves you so much that He provided for your greatest need by sending His Son, Jesus to pay your sin debt for you?  Wow!    I decided that since I trusted God with my eternal, never-dying soul to take me to heaven many years ago, whom I barely knew, then I could now trust Him to provide, protect, and work on my behalf.

What are some thieves that have been robbing you of your Victory and Joy recently?  And what steps will you take to remove that thief?  Please take a moment and share your thoughts.

Intimacy with God

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Are the following statements true?

It is possible to acquire a great deal of knowledge “About God” without really “Knowing God?” It is also possible to “Read” about a Person without ever “Knowing” that Individual in a close, intimate way? Please take a moment to reflect.  I believe the above questions are certainly true.

We are so easily distracted in our “walk” with God that I am fearful that we often mistake a “quick read of our Bible” with intimacy with God.  Many Christians do read their Bibles, yet most frequently  leave scratching their heads wondering what they just read.  What causes this to happen?  I know from personal experience, in my time with God, that I have faced a myriad of distractions during my important time with God.

I am writing these words at Chick-fil-A in Avon, Indiana.  As I look around, I am amazed at how many husbands and wives are facing “distractions” in their “walk with each other” this very moment.  Some are on cell phones; others have obviously lost focus on the conversation with their spouse; some are looking at “other people” rather than focusing on the one before them! Do these distractions describe your time with God?  If so,you must understand that the enemy of your soul “conveniently” places things around you, causing you to lose your focus with you Heavenly Father.

Satan does not desire your personal time with God to become significant, nor to draw you closer to God.   Christians often wonder why God appears so distant from them.  One answer could certainly be found in the word “distractions.” Does this hit home with you today?   Have certain distractions been robbing you of closeness with God?   Have distractions stopped your ears so that you cannot truly listen to your Father as He speaks to you through His precious Word?  Furthermore, have distractions caused your mind to wonder so that you have been unable to fully concentrate on God’s message to you?

How can we build our intimacy with our Father? and, how can we transform our “devotions” into something special and significant?

1.  Intimacy comes with spending “Quality time” with an individual .

As I look back over the time I spent dating my wife, I thought I really knew her prior to asking her to marry me. Yet, after all these years of marriage, I certainly “know” my sweet wife much better today than while we were dating .  How has this happened?   It has come about due to the “quality time” we have spent together over the years.  We have laughed, cried, shared fears, joys, hopes, and dreams.  We have both spoken, yet we have also taken time to listen to the words as well as the heart of the other.   Intimacy takes time.  You cannot microwave into intimacy like food in a microwave oven.  But the time, energy, and effort, are certainly worth the investment in the relationship.

2. Intimacy comes from carefully removing the distractions which have hindered the relationship!   What happened at Chick-Fil-A yesterday happens on a daily basis with the Children of God.  I encourage you to deal with these distractions immediately!!  You might not be aware of how much your Father desires to spend time with you!

3. Intimacy comes with having a clear focus on the other person.  Paul had this focus when he wrote the words in Philippians 3:10: “That I may know Him…”     God told Jeremiah how He would place a desire into their hearts to know Him.   Jeremiah 24:7 says, “And I will give them a heart to know  Me.”        Are you aware that your Heavenly Father thinks intimate thoughts about you?   Jeremiah 29:11 reveals this to us.  “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”  Amazing, isn’t it?  To know that God, has thoughts of me as well as you.  Positive thoughts!  Encouraging thoughts!  Thoughts with a specific plan for us!

4. Intimacy comes as a result of thinking of the other person, even during their absence. Once again, I spent one hour yesterday at Chick-Fil-A just thinking thoughts about God. How much time does the average Christian spend thinking thoughts about God?  I am certainly not an expert in this area, but this I do know, I once read where the average Christian spends two minutes a day in prayer.  How can anyone develop intimacy with such small  portions of time allocated to building the relationship?  It simply will not happen!  You must spend time with God, free from distraction.

5. Intimacy comes when one’s heart is focused on pleasing the other. The Bible says in Hebrews 11:6:  “But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for He that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.”

For example, our faith pleases God. The question we must ask is,  “how can I truly build my faith in God so that I can please Him more?”  These are the thoughts which builds intimacy!

As I set my pen aside, I want to ask you a series of questions, which are raised to provoke thought about the quality of your walk with God.

Have I rushed through my time with God recently?    Has this time been marked by a spirit of intimacy, of closeness to your Father?   Has this been time you long for and eagerly anticipate?  Or, has it become a mere routine, characterized by lack of depth and dryness?  It does not have to be this way.  James    reminds us that as we draw nigh unto God that He will draw nigh unto us in James 4:8.

The question is, “what price are you willing to pay in developing your relationship with God?”  Do you have the same desire to walk with God as David who said in Psalm 42:1:” …As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.”

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