This blog has both English and Spanish entries. To see only the English blogs, look under the "Categories" title to the right of the screen. Below you will see a tab for "English Blog"
Este blog tiene artículos en inglés y español. Para ver solamente los artítuclos en español, ver las "Categories" a la derecha de la pantalla. Debajo verán un tab para "Blog en español."
|Posted on August 18, 2014 at 11:30 AM||comments (0)|
"Y él dijo: He aquí yo veo cuatro varones sueltos, que se pasean en medio del fuego sin sufrir ningún daño...." Daniel 3:25
Estaba contemplando la historia de Sadrac, Mesac y Abed-nego. Estaban viviendo en una tierra que no era suya, bajo el control de un rey pagano. Después de rehusar el mandato del rey que les obligaba postrarse ante la estatua de oro, Nabucodonosor se llenó de ira y la Biblia nos dice que él, "mandó a hombres muy vigorosos que tenía en su ejército, que atasen a Sadrac, Mesac y Abed-nego, para echarlos en el horno de fuego ardiendo...y estos tres varones...cayeron atados dentro del horno de fuego ardiendo" Daviel 3:20, 23).
Nosotros también estamos viviendo en una tierra que no es nuestra, bajo el control del príncipe de las tinieblas. Y como Nabucodonosor, él está lleno de ira y manda los malvados de su ejercito que nos aten. De ahí nos echa en el horno de fuego, con las pruebas y tentaciones de esta vida, donde muchas veces, al igual que Sadrac, Mesac y Abed-nego, caemos, atados por las cosas de este mundo. Es importante entender que Dios no es él que manda el fuego, sin embargo nos permite pasar por el. Pero no es por nada.
Estos tres pasaron por el fuego, pero por su fe en Dios, los lazos que los tenían cautivados se consumieron en las llamas, dejándolos levantarse de donde se habían caído. Estaban libres para caminar y mover, sin sufrir ningún daño del fuego. Así es con nosotros también. Si nos aferramos con fe a las promesas de Dios, aunque caemos, Dios nos levantará. En vez de ser consumidos por el fuego, el fuego consumirá lo que nos tiene atado.
Era imposible para Sadrac, Mesac y Abed-nego sobrevivir el horno. Hasta los hombres "muy vigorosos" no pudieron sobrevivir, ni siquiera solo estando cerca de las llamas. Solamente por la mano de Dios podían salvarse. Así es con nosotros también. Es imposible pasar por muchas de las pruebas y luchas que tenemos que enfrentar. Si descuidamos nuestra relación con Dios y olvidamos de sus promesas, estaremos consumidos con las cosas terrenales que nos aten. Pero, si fijamos nuestros ojos en Cristo, los lazos de este mundo que nos encierren serán consumidos en el fuego. Seremos libres. Nos levantaremos en el fuego con Jesus a nuestro lado, así como estuvo con estos tres hebreos "en medio del fuego" (vs. 25). Nos ha prometido, "...No te desampararé, ni te dejaré; de manera que podemos decir confiadamente: El Señor es mi ayudador; no temeré Lo que me pueda hacer el hombre" (Hebreos 13:5, 6). Entonces, no importa lo que estás enfrentando hoy, aférrate a esta promesa y recuerda que Dios está contigo y te sostendrá. Mientras nos mantegamos agarrados de Dios, lo único que será consumido en el fuego, serán las ataduras terrenales.
|Posted on August 18, 2014 at 10:45 AM||comments (0)|
"'Look!' he answered, "I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt...." Daniel 3:25
I was contemplating the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego. They were living in a land that was not their own, under the rule of a pagan king. After refusing to obey the king's command to bow down to a golden statue, king Nebuchadnezzar became infuriated and we're told that he, "commanded certain mighty men of valor who were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego, and cast them into the burning fiery furnace" (Daniel 3:20). And after they were cast in it says that, "...these three men...fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace" (vs. 23).
We too are living in a land that is not our own, that is ruled by the prince of darkness. And like Nebuchadnezzar, he is infuriated with us and commands the evil ones of his army to bind us with earthly ties. Then he casts us into the fiery furnace of trials and temptations of this life, where often, just like Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego, we fall down, bound by those earthly ties. It's important to understand that God is not the one who sends the fire, yet he does allows it. But it is never for nought.
As these three passed through the fire, because of their faith in God, the ties that bound them were consumed by the flames. And as the ties melted away, they were able to rise from their fallen state and walk around, unscathed in the furnace. So it is with us, if we hold to our faith in God and His promises, we may fall down in the fire, but as we cling to that faith, instead of the fire destroying us, it will destroy the sin that binds us to this earth.
It was impossible for Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego to survive that furnace. Even the "mighty men of valor" could not survive even being near the flames. Only by the hand of God could they be saved. So it is with us. It is impossible for us to go through many of the fiery trials that we have to face. If we neglect God and forget his promises, we will be consumed along with our earthly ties. But if we keep our eyes on Jesus, whatever earthly ties that imprison us will be consumed in the fire. We will freed. We will be able to rise up in the fire with Jesus by our side, just like He was with these three Hebrews "in the midst of the fire" (vs. 25). He has promised, "...I will never leave you nor forsake you. So we may boldly say: 'The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me" (Hebrews 13:5, 6)? So whatever you are facing today, cling to that promise and remember that God is with you and will sustain you. As long as we keep our hold on God, the only thing that will be consumed in the fire will be those earthly ties that bind.
|Posted on August 11, 2014 at 9:20 AM||comments (0)|
“...do not profane My holy name by what [you] dedicate to Me: I am the LORD.” Leviticus 22:2
In Genesis chapter 4, we read the account of two different offerings to God - the offerings of Cain and Abel. We probably all know the account very well of how Cain offered fruits but Abel offered a lamb. They both brought an offering to God, but only Abel’s was accepted. The point is that it matters to God, what we dedicate to Him. We can’t just say, “because I am doing this with a willing heart, God will accept it.” Cain willingly brought his offering but it was not what God had asked for, so God could not bless it.
In Exodus 32 we read the account of the children of Israel and how they incited Aaron to build a golden calf for them. When the calf was ready, verse 5 shows us that Aaron said, “...tomorrow is a feast to the LORD.” The Hebrew word for Lord used here is Jehovah. So Aaron is saying, “...tomorrow is a feast to Jehovah.” Here we have Israel, immersed in pagan worship, while Aaron proclaims that they are doing it for Jehovah. Could God bless that kind of worship? Oh course not. God cannot bless a worship that is mixed with paganism. God was very displeased and thousands lost their lives.
There is a right way and a wrong way to serve the Lord. Leviticus is full of specifications on how and what God required in the offerings, sanctuary service, and just day to day living. God has not changed. I’m not saying that we are supposed to do all the sacrifices and ordinances from the Old Testament times, but there are still ways of worship that are acceptable or unacceptable to God. We need to study God’s Word to find out what God requires of us in todays time and how our worship and servitude can be acceptable in God’s sight. Like Leviticus 22:2 says, we need to be careful that we are not “profaning [His] holy name” by offering to God things that are contrary to what He has asked.
|Posted on June 26, 2014 at 11:10 AM||comments (0)|
"But a messenger came to Saul, saying, 'Hurry and come, for the Philistines have invaded the land!'" 1 Samuel 23:27
Today I just want to share a few thoughts from the life of Saul. We all know how his jealousy of David consumed his life. He had convinced himself that David was after the throne and he was determined to do all in his power to kill him. He even went so far as to have all the priests of the LORD killed! He became so focused on this one man (a man who really loved Saul and did not want to harm him in any way) that almost all of his efforts were concentrated on getting rid of David. He was so intent on this mission that became lax in protecting his kingdom. One day, as Saul proceeded in hot pursuit of David, "a messenger came to Saul, saying, 'Hurry and come, for the Philistines have invaded the land!'' David was not the enemy. Saul's jealousy made David out to be the enemy. Saul's jealousy and obsession consumed him to the point that he didn't realize that the real enemy was now in the camp.
Yet we do the same thing. We get so focused on ourselves and minor issues (that are really not issues at all...we make them out to be issues in our minds) that we don't even recognize that an enemy (THE enemy) has invaded the camp of our hearts. We make things and people out to be the enemy, when in reality the real issue is with ourselves. My prayer today is that God will help us to be humble and focused on Him (like David was) so that when the enemy invades, we will be ready to meet him with God's help.
|Posted on June 5, 2014 at 11:00 AM||comments (0)|
"And David said to Saul, 'I cannot walk with these, for I have not proved them.' So David took them off." 1 Samuel 17:39
I think we've all read the story of David and Goliath. Just before David goes out to meet the Giant, king Saul tries to cloth David with his own armor. But David says to Saul, "'I cannot walk with these, for I have not proved them.' So David took them off." 1 Samuel 17:39
I think, in a way, Saul was discouraging David (albeit inadvertently). The king was looking to an earthly armor to protect David. Yet how often do we do the same thing? We trust too often in what we can see. We trust too often to our own efforts and we place layer after layer of protection upon ourselves. We forget that we need the armor of God. Maybe we think that we need to help God out. But I LOVE what David says to Saul. And I know we have already read it above, but I just have to reiterate it. "'I cannot walk with these, for I have not proved them,' so David took them off."
When we fail to trust God and His promises, when we place layer after layer of our own protection upon us, we are trusting to an "unproved" method. And like David, we "cannot walk" spiritually. We cannot move forward to battle the enemy because we have cumbered ourselves down so much, focusing on what we can do in our own strength and not what God can do. Like David, we must take off the false armor. We must not trust to "unproved" methods. We must not allow ourselves to be burdened with anything that will hinder our spiritual movement, no matter how good it may appear.
I love LOVE LOVE what David says to the giant. After spewing out what he is going to do to Goliath and the other Philistines, through the name of the LORD, David says, "All this assembly shall know that the LORD does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the LORD's, and He will give you into our hands." 1 Samuel 17:47
God does not save by human instruments. He does not need our "sword" or "spear" or anything else we may try to use to protect ourselves. It is God's battle. All we need to do is trust His word, strip off our false armor and move forward with boldness in the promises of God.