The Results of Communion
The Results of Communion
“Finally, my dear friends, be glad that you belong to THE LORD. It doesn’t bother me to write the same things to you that I have written before. In fact, it is for your own good. Watch out for those people who behave like dogs! They are evil and want to do more than just circumcise you. But we are the ones who are truly circumcised, because we worship by the power of GOD’S SPIRIT and take pride in CHRIST JESUS. We don’t brag about what we have done, although I could. Others may brag about themselves, but I have more reason to brag than anyone else. I was circumcised when I was eight days old, and I am from the nation of Israel and the tribe of Benjamin. I am a true Hebrew. As a Pharisee, I strictly obeyed the Law of Moses. And I was so eager that I even made trouble for the church. I did everything the Law demands in-order-to please GOD. But CHRIST has shown me that what I once thought was valuable is worthless. Nothing is as wonderful as knowing CHRIST JESUS my LORD. I have given up everything else and count it all as garbage. All I want is CHRIST and to know that I belong to HIM. I could not make myself acceptable to GOD by obeying the Law of Moses. GOD accepted me because of my faith in CHRIST. All I want is to know CHRIST and the power that raised HIM to life. I want to suffer and die as HE did, so that somehow I also may be raised to life. I have not yet reached my goal, and I am not perfect. But CHRIST has taken hold of me. So I keep on running and struggling to take hold of the prize. My friends, I don’t feel that I have already arrived. But I forget what is behind, and I struggle for what is ahead. I run toward the goal, so that I can win the prize of being called to heaven. This is the prize that GOD offers because of what CHRIST JESUS has done.” – [Philippians 3:1-14]
•When a person goes on a physical “diet” or changes their exercise and eating habits, they expect some things to change!
•When a person “tightens their belt” financially, and begins using Biblical financial principles, they expect there to be a difference in their financial outlook and picture!
•When a person is sick, and they go to the doctor, they expect the doctor to give sound advice and/or recommend needed changes, medications, etc.
•When a CHRISTian ‘Communes” with GOD, there are also some expected changes!
•What happens when we really ‘Commune” with GOD regularly in our lives as CHRISTians?
The Results of Communion
1.Joy in times of Sorrow – as both Mary & Martha experienced:
“Martha said to JESUS, “LORD, if YOU had been here, my brother would not have died. Yet even now I know that GOD will do anything YOU ask.” JESUS told her, “Your brother will live again!” Martha answered, “I know that he will be raised to life on the last day, when all the dead are raised.” JESUS then said, “I AM THE ONE who raises the dead to life! Everyone who has faith in ME will live, even if they die. And everyone who lives because of faith in ME will never really die. Do you believe this?” “Yes, LORD!” she replied. “I believe that YOU are CHRIST, THE SON of GOD. YOU are THE ONE we hoped would come into the world.” After Martha said this, she went and privately said to her sister Mary, “THE TEACHER is here, and HE wants to see you.” As soon as Mary heard this, she got up and went out to JESUS. HE was still outside the village where Martha had gone to meet HIM. Many people had come to comfort Mary, and when they saw her quickly leave the house, they thought she was going out to the tomb to cry. So they followed her. Mary went to where JESUS was. Then as soon as she saw HIM, she knelt at HIS feet and said, “LORD, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” - [John 11:21-32]
There will be times of sorrow, struggle & trouble in this life:
•“These things I have spoken unto you, that in ME ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” – [John 16:33]
•“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.” – [1 Thessalonians 4:13]
2.Success in Labor – as the Disciples found out in fishing:
“HE said, “Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some fish.” When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.” – [John 21:6]
•“Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.” – [1 Corinthians 4:2]
•And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” - [Galatians 6:9]
3.Guidance in Times of Perplexity – as illustrated by Philip and the Ethiopian Eunich:
“THE LORD’S angel said to Philip, “Go south along the desert road that leads from Jerusalem to Gaza. So Philip left. An important Ethiopian official happened to be going along that road in his chariot. He was the chief treasurer for Candace, the Queen of Ethiopia. The official had gone to Jerusalem to worship and was now on his way home. He was sitting in his chariot, reading the book of the prophet Isaiah. THE SPIRIT told Philip to catch up with the chariot. Philip ran up close and heard the man reading aloud from the book of Isaiah. Philip asked him, “Do you understand what you are reading?” The official answered, “How can I understand unless someone helps me?” He then invited Philip to come up and sit beside him. The man was reading the passage that said, “HE was led like a sheep on its way to be killed. HE was silent as a lamb whose wool is being cut off, and HE did not say a word. HE was being treated like a nobody and did not receive a fair trial. How can HE have children, if HIS life is snatched away?” The official said to Philip, “Tell me, was the prophet talking about himself or about someone else?” So Philip began at this place in the Scriptures and explained the good news about JESUS. As they were going along the road, they were going along the road, they came to a place where there was some water. The official said, “Look! Here is some water. Why can’t I be baptized?” He ordered the chariot to stop. Then they both went down into the water, and Philip baptized him. After they had come out of the water, THE LORD’S SPIRIT took Philip away. The official never saw him again, but he was very happy as he went on his way.” – [Acts 8:26-39]
•“We know that GOD is always at work for the good of everyone who loves HIM. They are the ones GOD has chosen for HIS purpose.” – [Romans 8:28]
•“I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with MINE eye.” – [Psalm 32:8]
•“Trust in THE LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all they ways acknowledge HIM, and HE shall direct thy paths.” – [Proverbs 3:5,6]
•“THY word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” – [Psalm 119:105]
4.Gladness in Persecution – as Paul and Silas experienced:
“One day on our way to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave girl. She had a spirit in her that gave her the power to tell the future. By doing this she made a lot of money for her owners. The girl followed Paul and the rest of us and kept yelling, “These men are servants of THE MOST HIGH GOD! They are telling you how to be saved.” This went on for several days. Finally, Paul got so upset that he turned and said to the spirit, “In THE NAME of JESUS CHRIST, I order you to leave this girl alone!” At once the evil spirit left her. When the girl’s owners realized that they had lost all chances for making more money, they grabbed Paul and Silas and dragged them into court. They told the officials, “These Jews are upsetting our city! They are telling us to do things we Romans are not allowed to do.” The crowd joined in the attack on Paul and Silas. Then the officials tore the clothes off the two men and ordered them to be beaten with a whip. After they had been beaten, they had been badly beaten, they were put in jail, and the jailer was told to guard them carefully. The jailer did as he was told. He put them deep inside the jail and chained their feet to heavy blocks of wood. About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing praises to GOD, while the other prisoners listened. Suddenly a strong earthquake shook the jail to its foundations. The doors opened, and the chains fell from all the prisoners When the jailer woke up and saw that the doors were open, he thought that the prisoners had escaped. He pulled out his sword and was about to kill himself. But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! No one has escaped.” The jailer asked for a torch and went into the jail. He was shaking all over as he knelt down in front of Paul and Silas. After he had led them out of the jail, he asked, “What must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Have faith in THE LORD JESUS and you will be saved! This is also true for everyone who lives in your home.” – [Acts 16:16-31]
•“Yea, and all that will live godly in CHRIST JESUS shall suffer persecution.” – [2 Timothy 3:12]
•“But THE GOD of all Grace, who had called us unto HIS eternal glory by CHRIST JESUS, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, establish, strengthen, settle you.” – [1 Peter 5:10]
5.Victory in Temptation – as Joseph in Egypt experienced:
“No one in my master’s house is more important than I am. The only thing he hasn’t given me is you, and that’s because you are his wife. I won’t sin against GOD by doing such a terrible thing as this.” - [Genesis 39:9]
•“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of GOD, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given to him.” - [James 1:2-5]
•“There is no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but GOD is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” - [1 Corinthians 10:13]
6.Power in Weakness – as the Apostle Paul knew:
“I have to brag. There is nothing to be gained by it, but I must brag about the visions and other things that THE LORD has shown me. I know about one of CHRIST’s followers who was taken up into the third heaven fourteen years ago. I don’t know if the man was still in his body when it happened, but GOD certainly knows. As I said, only GOD knows if this man was in his body at the time. But he was taken up into paradise, where he heard things that are too wonderful to tell. I will brag about that man, but not about myself, except say how weak I am. Yet even if I did brag, I would not be foolish. I would simply be speaking the truth. But I will try not to say too much. That way, none of you will think more highly of me than you should because of what you have seen me do and say. Of course, I now referring to the wonderful things I saw. One of satan’s angels was sent to make me suffer terribly, so that I would not feel too proud. Three times I begged THE LORD to make this suffering go away. But HE replied, “My kindness is all you need. My power is strongest when you ae weak.” So if CHRIST keeps giving me HIS power, I will gladly brag about how weak I am. Yes, I am glad to be weak or insulted or mistreated or to have troubles and sufferings, if it is for CHRIST. Because when I am weak, I am strong..” - [2 Corinthians 12:1-10]
•“Have mercy upon me, O LORD; for I am weak: O LORD, heal me; for my bones are vexed.” - [Psalm 6:2]
•“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: THE SPIRIT indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” - [Matthew 26:41]
•“What time I am afraid, I will trust in THEE.” - [Psalm 56:3]
7.Endurance in Times of Trial – as the Apostle John was made to know when he was banished to the Isle of Patmose:
“I am John, a follower together with all of you. We suffer because JESUS is our KING, but HE gives us the strength to endure. I was sent to Patmos Island, because I had preached GOD’S message and had told about JESUS. On THE LORD’S day THE SPIRIT took control of me, and behind I heard a loud voice that sounded like a trumpet. The voice said, “Write in a book what you see. Then send it to the seven churches in Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea. When I turned to see who was speaking to me, I saw seven gold lampstands. There with the lampstands was someone who seemed to be THE SON of MAN. HE was wearing a robe that reached down to HIS feet, and a gold cloth was wrapped around HIS chest. HIS head and HIS hair were white as wool or snow, and HIS eyes looked like flames of fire. HIS feet were glowing like bronze being heated in a furnace, and HIS voice sounded like the roar of a waterfall. HE held seven stars in HIS right hand, and a sharp double-edged sword was coming from HIS mouth. HIS face was shining as bright as the sun at noon. When I saw HIM, I fell as HIS feet like a dead person. But HE put HIS right hand on me and said: “Don’t be afraid! I AM THE FIRST, THE LAST, and THE LIVING ONE. I died, but I AM alive forevermore, and I have the keys to death and the world of the dead.” – [Revelation 1:9-18]
We “Commune” with GOD NOW through HIS Word, Prayer, Meditation, the Power of the indwelling HOLY SPIRIT, Worship, Fellow Believers, Service, etc ….. BUT ONE DAY IN THE NEAR FUTURE…
“And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, ”Behold the Tabernacle of GOD is with men, and HE will dwell with them, and they shall be HIS people, and GOD HIMSELF shall be with them, and be their GOD.” – [Revelation 21:3]