Posts Tagged ‘1 John 5:14-15’

You will prosper but the weapons won’t

January 12, 2019

 

As the spiritual battle rages before us day by day, I recall a recent blog post which encouraged believers to “hold their peace,” even in the midst of the most intense and stressful situations, knowing that the Lord is fighting for us. We closed with a musical reminder that “The battle is not yours: It’s the Lord’s.” Today I recall similar words of encouragement regarding the spiritual attack that intensifies before our eyes. Isaiah 54:17 offers words to strengthen and fortify our faith:

No weapon formed against you shall prosper,
And every tongue which rises against you in judgment
You shall condemn.
This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD,
And their righteousness is from Me,” says the LORD.

This verse was the inspiration for the following:

You Will Prosper, but All the Weapons Will Not

 Isaiah 54:17

According to God’s promises, you will prosper:
All your days overflow in goodness and mercy.
Indeed, you will prosper, but the weapons will not.

In every trial, you rise as more than conqueror.
Though the weapons of your warfare you cannot see.
According to God’s promises, you will prosper.

You press toward the new level, as you now enter
And leave a legacy to touch eternity.
Indeed, you will prosper, but the weapons will not.

You set yourself to remain fixed in the center
Of the will of God, striving toward your destiny.
According to God’s promises, you will prosper.

No weapon formed against you can ever alter
Your purpose or change all God has called you to be.
Indeed, you will prosper, but the weapons will not.

You rest in knowing that God’s grace is far greater than sin, for He said, “Their righteousness is of me.”
According to God’s promises, you will prosper:
Indeed, all the weapons formed against you will not.

While meditating on the verse from Isaiah, I also thought of my recently published book Embracing Your Life Sentence: How to Turn Life’s Greatest Tragedies into Your Greatest Triumphs. Chapter Four focuses on the power of prayer which I came to understand and appreciate as a prayer warrior engaged in spiritual warfare after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2000. Here is an excerpt sharing some of the lessons I learned:

In his book Crafted Prayer: The Joy of Always Getting Your Prayers Answered, Bible teacher Graham Cooke, shows how to use the Scriptures to construct specific, targeted prayers, addressed to God offered individually as well as corporately. Cook maintains that crafted prayer is designed that those who pray will know “the joy of always getting your prayers answered.” The Bible offers this assurance to those who “pray the Word of God”:

Isaiah 55:11

So shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing to which I sent it.

I John 5:14-15 also reminds us:

And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us: 15And if we know that he hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

Crafted prayers are like handcrafted arrows, works of art within themselves, designed to be on target consistently. Jeremiah described the nations who attacked Babylon in this way: “Their arrows shall be like those of an expert warrior; none shall return in vain” (Jeremiah 50:9). Similarly, crafted prayers are exquisitely designed and accurately dispatched to specific targets, and they always hit the mark.

Prayer has been described as a powerful offensive weapon in the spiritual arsenal of believers. The illustration and application of crafted prayer as arrows provides a picture of how prayer can be used offensively with precision to a limited degree. In light of how modern warfare has changed as we have moved further into the 21st Century, a more precise revision of the original analogy would take us from arrows to smart-bombs released with pinpoint laser accuracy.

In an article in the LA Times, Peter Pae writes about lasers and their use in modern warfare:

The word ‘laser’ is an acronym that stands for ‘light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation.’ The technology turns atomic particles into light with enough radiation to damage an object it encounters. The range and severity of the damage depend on how much power can be generated and how well the light can be focused on the target.

. . . [L]aser scientists say significant technical challenges recently have been overcome, transforming laser weapons from a laboratory project into a promising part of the U.S. arsenal. With such lasers, a fighter jet could destroy ground targets with pinpoint accuracy, significantly reducing the chance of injuring civilians.

The passage from Ephesians 6:18 also reminds believers of the power of prayer, used as an offensive weapon in the ongoing spiritual battle called life. For the Christian believer putting on the whole armor of God should apply to every situation, but this passage had particular application to my specific situation regarding cancer, especially the last verse of the passage:

Ephesians 6:18:

Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.

Finally, we recognize this truth regarding our spiritual weaponry:

2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (NKJV)

3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, 5 casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,

Without question, prayer can be a powerful offensive and defensive weapon. We recognize that “No weapon formed against me shall prosper” as lyrics from Fred Hammond conclude our discussion:

Embracing Your Life Sentence: How to Turn Life’s Greatest Tragedies into Your Greatest Triumphs is now available wherever books are sold and online. For more details check out https://lonnelledwardjohnson.com.

Three poems on the will of God

May 2, 2018
The will of God will not take you

A powerful statement regarding “The Will of God.”

Taken from 1 John 5: 14-15 in the Amplified Bible, the Verse of the Day for May 2, 2018 on Biblegateway.com contains a phrase that never fails to arrest my attention:

1 John 5:14- 15 (AMP):

This is the [remarkable degree of] confidence which we [as believers are entitled to] have before Him: that if we ask anything according to His will, [that is, consistent with His plan and purpose] He hears us.

The expression “His will” or “the will of God” brought to mind three poems based on that topic compiled into what I called a “Triptych on the Will of God.” OxfordDictionaries.com offers this definition of the term “triptych”: “A set of three associated artistic, literary, or musical works intended to be appreciated together.” WordNet 3.6 provides this definition of triptych art, as “art consisting of a painting or carving (especially an altarpiece) on three panels (usually hinged together).” Here is an example taken from the same source:

triptych altar
ONE LEAF OF A TRIPTYCH IN CATHEDRAL OF SEVILLE

Of the three attached poems in my triptych, two are original works while the third by is an anonymous author. The two pieces that I wrote are inspired by quotations and verses of scripture while the anonymous poem does not have any introductory material. A song related to the will of God is also inserted between the second and third poems and at the end of the series.

The Will of God

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.     

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.                                               

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Albert Schweitzer

 

My food is to do the will of Him who sent me,                     

and to finish His work.     

John 4:34 [NKJV]

                                                

To unearth at last the world’s most priceless treasure

And gaze upon the splendor of God’s sovereignty

Is to savor joy unspeakable beyond measure:

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.

To know intimacy beyond the highest degree,

A confident assurance when I acknowledge

And embrace the path, the destiny, prepared for me:

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.

To live life, knowing I am covered by the Blood

Is to walk with no regret, never to lament,

For all decisions work together for the good:

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Guided and protected by the Shepherd’s staff and rod,

I rejoice to find, to know and do the will of God.

 

Listen to “Your Will” by Darius Brooks

 

The Will of God II 

“The will of God, nothing less, nothing more, nothing else”

Anonymous

 

“In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God          

in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

 I Thessalonians 5:18

 

God unfolds before me the mystery of His will.

I may not fully understand, but I will nod

In agreement that I still say yes to His will.

Despite the rugged mountain terrain I have trod,

I persist and press on to fully do His will.

In everything give thanks: this is the will of God.

At all times and places I can fulfill His will.

Whatever comes my way I will serve Him until

The day when He calls me home or Christ returns.

I align my will with His until the two are one.

Ever the eager servant, I am one who learns

To humbly say, “Not my will but Yours be done.”

The will of God, nothing less, nothing more, nothing else,

But truly doing the will of God is something else.

 

“In Everything Give Him Thanks” so says 1 Thessalonians 5:18 and the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir:

The Will of God

Author: Unknown
The will of God will never take you,
Where the grace of God cannot keep you.
Where the arms of God cannot support you,
Where the riches of God cannot supply your needs,
Where the power of God cannot endow you.

The will of God will never take you,
Where the spirit of God cannot work through you,
Where the wisdom of God cannot teach you,
Where the army of God cannot protect you,
Where the hands of God cannot mold you.

The will of God will never take you,
Where the love of God cannot enfold you,
Where the mercies of God cannot sustain you,
Where the peace of God cannot calm your fears,
Where the authority of God cannot overrule for you.

The will of God will never take you,
Where the comfort of God cannot dry your tears,
Where the Word of God cannot feed you,
Where the miracles of God cannot be done for you,
Where the omnipresence of God cannot find you.

A song connected to this particular poem is written by Deb Zemke; “His Will” is played and sung by Robert Jason.

According to His will

May 2, 2016

1 John 5--14-15

From 1 John 5:14-15 (KJV) comes the Verse of the Day for May 2, 2016:

And this is the confidence that we have in him that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

Here is the passage from the Amplified Bible:

1 John 5:14-15

This is the [remarkable degree of] confidence which we [as believers are entitled to] have before Him: that if we ask anything according to His will, [that is, consistent with His plan and purpose] He hears us.

John 9:31 (NLT) also offers this reminder as to whom God responds as individuals pray:

We know that God doesn’t listen to sinners, but he is ready to hear those who worship him and do his will.

There is further encouragement to seek His will found in Proverbs 16:3

Commit your works to the Lord [submit and trust them to Him], And your plans will succeed [if you respond to His will and guidance].

The reference to “His will” brings to mind a series of posts on the Will of God. One of the entries expressed my desire “To find, to know, and to do the will of God.” From that post come some of the following comments:

Throughout the Psalms and elsewhere in the Bible we find encouragement to do the will of God:

Psalm 40:8 (NLT):

I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your instructions are written on my heart.”

Psalm 143:10 in the Amplified Bible reinforces this message:

Teach me to do Your will [so that I may please You],
For You are my God;
Let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground.

Since a child, I have been endeavoring to discover the will of God for my life, as expressed in this poem:

The Will of God

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Albert Schweitzer

 

My food is to do the will of Him who sent me,

and to finish His work.

John 4:34 [NKJV]

                                                

To unearth at last the world’s most priceless treasure

And gaze upon the splendor of God’s sovereignty

Is to savor joy unspeakable beyond measure:

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.

To know intimacy beyond the highest degree,

A confident assurance when I acknowledge

And embrace the path, the destiny, prepared for me:

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.

To live life, knowing I am covered by the Blood

Is to walk with no regret, never to lament,

For all decisions work together for the good:

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Guided and protected by the Shepherd’s staff and rod,

I rejoice to find, to know and do the will of God.

Darius Brooks offers a passionate rendition of “Your Will,” one of my favorite songs focusing on the will of God: