King James Bible Study – “And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” – Mark 8:34
Date: Wednesday, April 24, 2019
Chapters: Psalms 43-45, 49, 84-85, 87
Message: Wash Your Face
Hello My Friend,
Countenance; The contents of a body; the outline and extent which constitutes the whole figure or external appearance. Take a look around a room full of people, perhaps even look at your own face in the mirror. What do you see? If you truly want to see a persons heart, just look at their face. We can appear to be happy and well, but our face tells the true story. We may not realize it, but our face often reveals what our body is really saying, whether happy, sad, angry, hurting, and yes, even jealous or devious. While we are very good at keeping up our appearances, Jesus sees our face, and He knows whether or not we are sincere. “Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face; That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.” – Matthew 6:16-18.
“of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces,” Yes, Jesus does see our face, and whether or not we need to be washing them. What does fasting have to do with our countenance? Fasting is a great way to bring us closer to God, and see Him answer prayer. Fasting has been distorted greatly, like many other things instituted by God, and is rarely about reaching God anymore. Now, sometimes fasting is necessary for obvious reasons, but we are to never take something that God instituted for Him and use it for our own personal gain. We all have wants and needs, and if we wash our face, and go to God with a since heart, we will get His attention. When we go to God, we need to come to Him with all our heart, and soul, and if you think that He does not know if we are just doing it for appearances, think again.
“Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man. For thou art the God of my strength: why dost thou cast me off? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy? O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles. Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God. Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.” – Psalm 43:1-5.
“and why art thou disquieted within me?” Do you think that every God fearing person written in the Bible has not felt as we do at times? Even Jesus asked Him why He forsook him when he was on the cross. That does not mean our heart has turned on God, it means our entire body is hurting, and we need to remind ourselves that God is the health of our countenance. There is not one of us who has not felt deep sorrow and grief through our trials, and yet our hope is in God because one day we will no longer have to suffer. Amen! Then why is our soul disquieted? Often it is because we see others who are not so faithful to God being blessed and we are not.
“To the chief Musician for the sons of Korah, Maschil. We have heard with our ears, O God, our fathers have told us, what work thou didst in their days, in the times of old. How thou didst drive out the heathen with thy hand, and plantedst them; how thou didst afflict the people, and cast them out. For they got not the land in possession by their own sword, neither did their own arm save them: but thy right hand, and thine arm, and the light of thy countenance, because thou hadst a favour unto them. In God we boast all the day long, and praise thy name for ever. Selah. But thou hast cast off, and put us to shame; and goest not forth with our armies. If we have forgotten the name of our God, or stretched out our hands to a strange god; Shall not God search this out? for he knoweth the secrets of the heart. Yea, for thy sake are we killed all the day long; we are counted as sheep for the slaughter. Awake, why sleepest thou, O Lord? arise, cast us not off for ever. Wherefore hidest thou thy face, and forgettest our affliction and our oppression? For our soul is bowed down to the dust: our belly cleaveth unto the earth. Arise for our help, and redeem us for thy mercies’ sake.” – Psalm 44:1-3,8-9,20-26.
“Shall not God search this out?” Yes, God surely knows the secrets of our heart, and while we may often ask God where He is or wonder why He seems to be sleeping as we continue to seek relief with none in sight, He is awake. And let me tell you, when there seems to be no end in sight, keep reminding yourself that you belong to Jesus, and one day all of your pains and sorrows will be gone. Amen! Those who are trusting in all they have cannot say that. “To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah. Hear this, all ye people; give ear, all ye inhabitants of the world: Both low and high, rich and poor, together. Wherefore should I fear in the days of evil, when the iniquity of my heels shall compass me about? They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: (For the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever:) That he should still live for ever, and not see corruption. Like sheep they are laid in the grave; death shall feed on them; and the upright shall have dominion over them in the morning; and their beauty shall consume in the grave from their dwelling. But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave: for he shall receive me. Selah.” – Psalm 49:1-2,5-9,14-15.
“and the upright shall have dominion over them in the morning;” This is an amazing reminder that while we may weep in the night, joy comes in the morning. We may not have everything we want, joy comes in the morning because we will see Jesus. Amen! We are reminded through this Psalm that, rich or poor, we are all going to die, but it is our soul that is the most precious thing to God. We cannot take anything on this earth with us, and certainly cannot buy our way into heaven. There is only one person who can redeem our soul and take us with Him, and that is Jesus. Amen! And let me tell you, there is nothing better than being in the presence of Jesus. And when you let go of all the things that weigh down your heart, and wash your face, you will find that He is with you all along. “My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the LORD: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God. For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness. For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.” – Psalm 84:2,10-12.
“I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God,” I always say I rather be scrubbing floors in heaven than have everything I want here. I have never been a person that wants all the finest things the world has to offer, I do not care about gold, diamonds, fancy cars, or great wealth, I only ever wanted to be able to take care of myself and family. And who does not want a home of their own or someone to come home to. And guess what? One day we will. We may never have a home to call our own here, but we do have a mansion that Jesus is preparing for us. Let me tell you, the people of the Old Testament may not have known who Jesus was in the flesh, but He knew who they were, and they definitely knew that their salvation came from the LORD alone.
“Turn us, O God of our salvation, and cause thine anger toward us to cease. Wilt thou be angry with us for ever? wilt thou draw out thine anger to all generations? Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee? Shew us thy mercy, O LORD, and grant us thy salvation. I will hear what God the LORD will speak: for he will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints: but let them not turn again to folly. Surely his salvation is nigh them that fear him; that glory may dwell in our land. Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other. Righteousness shall go before him; and shall set us in the way of his steps.” – Psalm 85:4-10,13.
“and shall set us in the way of his steps.” This is what pain and sorrow does for us through our faith in Him, it sets us in the way of His steps. It washes our face, and shows who we truly are, and although our faces may reveal we are hurting, we will find mercy and truth, righteousness and peace as we continue in our faith. “For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel! For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me. What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel. For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.” – I Corinthians 9:16-19.
Jesus Christ Magnified: “O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.” – Psalm 84:12.
Today’s Prayer: God, It is so easy to praise and thank You when things are going well, not so much when we are in pain. It is the pains in life that You allow that not only define us as Christians, but reveal Your Son in us so that when they see our face, they see Jesus. Oh, my soul gets so weary when nothing I do seems to make a difference, I want to run and hide, tempted to walk away and do what I want to do, but it is Your grace that keeps me from doing that. I rather be scrubbing floors in Your palace than living in corrupt riches. Lord, fill me full with Your grace, revive the joy of my salvation, as my hope is in You, keep my feet walking with You, let me not turn to the right or left, guide me in the way You will have me, and open my ears, eyes, and heart to Your truths. And if I have to wash me face, tell me so that You can reward me openly through my faith In Your name Jesus, I pray, Amen.
God Bless You, I am praying for you,
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