Posts Tagged ‘Daniel 6:27’

God is able

June 6, 2018

Jesus Christ offered a reminder to his followers that “We ought always to pray and not to faint.” The Verse of the Day for June 6, 2018 unfolds one of the most powerful expressions of God’s desire for His people in the form of a prayer at the end of chapter 3 of Ephesians. Let us take a close look at the entire passage in the New Living Translation:

Ephesians 3:14-21:

14 When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, 15 the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. 16 I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. 17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

The powerful prayer culminates with a benediction expressing the extent of God’s ability to accomplish His will by means of the power He has placed in those who believe according to working of His mighty power.

Ephesians 3:20-21 (NLT):

20 Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. 21 Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.

This closing passage shines as crowning jewels in that exquisite revelation of God’s ability. The opening phrase of verse 20 brings to mind the expression “God is able,” a phrase found in the lyrics to this Children’s Ministry song:

He’s able, He’s able, I know He’s able,
I know my Lord is able to carry me through.
He’s able, He’s able, I know He’s able,
I know my Lord is able to carry me through.
He healed the broken-hearted and set the captive free,
He made the lame to walk again and caused the blind to see;
He’s able, He’s able, I know He’s able,
I know my Lord is able to carry me through.

Sometimes in the midst of very trying circumstances that seem to overwhelm us with their magnitude, we are strengthened and encouraged by the Word of God and by examples of those like Daniel and others who exercised astounding faith, reaping the benefits of their strong convictions. Without question, Daniel came to recognize that, indeed, “God is able.”

Many times when we think about Daniel, the Hebrew children and others, we fail to realize that they were real people who faced real dangers. Just as we do also, they faced stressful situations that could overwhelm them and cause them to doubt God’s ability to come to their rescue. A teaching on Daniel and his companions inspired this response which also uses Ephesians 3:20, as part of its introduction:

God is Able

If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king
Daniel 3:17

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,
Ephesians 3:20

God is able to do far above all we ask or think.
Life’s greatest challenges will not prevail, but they will shrink.
Although threatened on every hand, we refuse to back down.
In the midst of what seems to be defeat, we will still rebound.
If we have to, we will walk on water and will not sink.

Surrounded by disaster, even at the very brink
Of total defeat, so the enemy would have us to think.
Though he confronts and tries to intimidate, we stand our ground:
God is able.

We have learned that God’s Word and God’s will are always in sync,
That His Word nourishes and sustains us more than food or drink.
Our confident trust in God is nothing less than profound,
As we rise untouched, not singed, even from a fiery showdown.
Renewed in the spirit of our minds, we can now rethink:
God is able.

Like Daniel in the den of lions, we sometimes find ourselves in desperate, seemingly impossible situations from which we cannot extract ourselves on our own. When we think of situations like that of Daniel, we must always remember the King’s response when God delivered Daniel:

Daniel 6:27

He [the God of Daniel] delivers and rescues, and he works signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.

As we close this blog entry, another magnificent benediction from Jude comes to mind, a further reminder that God is able:
Jude 24-25 (NLT):

24 Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault. 25 All glory to him who alone is God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are his before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time! Amen.

We add the finishing touch with this song from Hillsong to reinforce the message “God is Able”:

To the rescue. . . one more time

December 10, 2016

psalm-35-17

Recently while waiting in the barber shop on a Saturday morning, I “happened” to view a television episode of Sea Rescue which highlighted a most unusual rescue attempt. A dolphin had become stuck in the mud of the inlet of the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The Sea World San Diego rescue team along with the Imperial Beach lifeguards, were able to lift the stranded dolphin out of the thick muddy surroundings and transport it to the open waters of the ocean. Most ironically, the name of the vessel used was “The Second Chance.” The initial rescue was short-lived, however, for the adult male dolphin returned to the area and become even more deeply mired in the mud which threatened to suffocate sea animal as high tide approached. Once again, the rescue team lifted the sea animal out of the muck, carrying it to deeper ocean waters. This time the dolphin swam freely into the ocean and did not return.

The television episode reminded me that so many times as we go through life, we become entangled in circumstances that restrict our efforts to succeed and serve only to impede our progress. Like the Psalmist we may find ourselves in desperate situations whereby we cry out to God:

Psalm 35:17 (NASB)

Lord, how long will You look on?
Rescue my soul from their ravages,
My only life from the lions.

Like Daniel in the den of lions, we sometimes find ourselves in desperate, seemingly impossible situations from which we cannot extract ourselves on our own. When we think of such situations like that of Daniel, we must remember the King’s response when God delivered Daniel:

Daniel 6:27

He [the God of Daniel] delivers and rescues, and he works signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.

Colossians 1:13 in the New American Standard Bible also speaks of our having been delivered or rescued by God, our Father:

For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son

During times of intense pressure and overwhelming circumstances, we sometimes forget just how faithful God has been in responding to our call. At times we may wonder how can God get us out of current, difficult circumstances that entrench us, but we do not need to be concerned with knowing:

Just How God Will Deliver Us

But we had the sentence of death in ourselves,

that we should not trust in ourselves,                     

but in God which raises the dead:

Who delivered us from so great a death, and does deliver:

in whom we trust that he will still deliver us;

1 Corinthians 1:8-9

Just how God will deliver us we do not know,

But of His unfailing love and power we are sure:

He can send a raven and command a widow

To sustain Elijah and all who will endure.

Though He may not be early, God is never late.

We rest in knowing that our Father is faithful,

As we trust Him, learning to labor and to wait.

For each promise fulfilled we are ever grateful

And express our gratitude in word and in deed.

We sense there never was a more perilous time

But keep walking by faith wherever Christ may lead,

For grand mountain vistas await the ones who climb.

The hand of God brought us thus far along the way,

And we shall finish our course is all we have to say.

In the recent past, I have posted a blog entry around October 31 in which I relate a Halloween prank which had disastrous consequences for a young man who went to live with a relative in the rural South where there was no indoor plumbing, and everyone used an outdoor toilet known as an “outhouse.”  Unbeknownst to my young friend, the custom on Halloween night was to move the “outhouse” from its original position so that when a person stepped inside, he would fall into the pit. That’s exactly what happened, and my friend immediately cried out, “Daddy, Daddy, come and get me!” His father came running with a flashlight and reached down and grabbed his son by the collar and snatched him out of the horrible pit.

That incident never fails to remind me of a spiritual parallel whereby I, like the young boy in horrific circumstances, find myself in a horrible mess, generally of my own making, as I call out to my Heavenly Father in desperation to come “to the rescue.” I identify with the young man and expressed my thoughts in some of the lines of “my testimony in poetry”:

With lovin arms you reach way down

And snatched me from Satan’s outhouse,

Sought me and flat-out rescued me,

Fixed me up in my Father’s house.

Why Don’t Somebody Help Me Praise the Lord?

Last year I recall a teaching that focused on “Moving from Rescue to Restoration,” which appeared to be a perfect sequel to my annual Halloween reflections in pointing out the three stages of a process that all believers encounter that begins with “Rescue” followed by “Recovery” and ends with “Restoration.” This ongoing process takes time, however. As we look to God and His Word, we are strengthened and encouraged in moving toward our ultimate destination. That teaching also brought to mind the song “I Will Restore” by Kevin LeVar, the perfect way to cap off our discussion of God’s faithfulness not only to rescue but to restore as well.

Moving from Rescue to Restoration

October 30, 2014

outhouseFor the past couple of years I have posted a blog entry around the 31st of October in which I relate a Halloween prank which had disastrous consequences for a young man. This year I am re-posting the entry with an additional commentary based a teaching that was the perfect sequel to the initial posting:

Halloween and some of its negative aspects, such as pranks, remind me of an incident a friend shared with me when he went to live with a relative in the rural South where there was no indoor plumbing, and everyone used an outdoor toilet known as an “outhouse.” Unbeknownst to my young friend, the custom on Halloween night was to move the “outhouse” from its original position so that when a person stepped inside, he would fall into the pit. That’s exactly what happened, and my friend immediately cried out, “Daddy, Daddy, come and get me!” His father came running with a flashlight and reached down and grabbed his son by the collar and snatched him out of the horrible pit.

That incident never fails to remind me of a spiritual parallel whereby I, like the young boy in horrific circumstances, called out to my Heavenly Father in desperation. I identified with my friend and expressed my thoughts in some of the lines of “my testimony in poetry”:

With lovin arms you reach way down

And snatched me from Satan’s outhouse,

Sought me and flat-out rescued me,

Fixed me up in my Father’s house.

Why Don’t Somebody Help Me Praise the Lord?

(from Stone upon Stone: Psalms of Remembrance)

Like the Psalmist we may find ourselves in situations whereby we cry out to God:

Psalm 35:17

Lord, how long wilt thou look on? rescue my soul from their destructions, my darling from the lions.

Like Daniel in the den of lions, we sometimes find ourselves in desperate, seemingly impossible situations from which we cannot extract ourselves on our own. When we think of such situations like that of Daniel, we must remember the King’s response when God delivered Daniel:

Daniel 6:27

He [the God of Daniel] delivers and rescues, and he works signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.

In thinking about the record of Daniel in the lion’s den, the words of a Black Spiritual also raise an important question:

Didn’t my Lord deliver Daniel, deliver Daniel, Deliver Daniel?

Didn’t my Lord deliver Daniel? Then why not every man?

During times of intense pressure and overwhelming circumstances, I sometimes forget just how faithful God has been in responding to my call, but He gently comforts and reminds with these words:

   Listen to Me

Isaiah 46:3-4

Listen to me. Open your ears and clearly hear

I have always been there. Though you had not perceived

My presence in the wasteland, I was ever near.

Indeed, I knew you before you were first conceived.

Even to your old age and gray hairs I am He

Who still holds you and causes you to remember.

I open deaf ears and cause blinded eyes to see

The passion that consumes your soul was once an ember.

Though I seem to be delayed, I will not tarry

But will return for the faithful ones who remain:

Those whom I have made those I will also carry;

Those whom I have called by name I will sustain.

Rest in me: I will perform all I said to do.

Know that I will sustain you and will rescue you.

Every Halloween when I recall my friend who found himself in a horrific situation and called out to his father or whenever I find myself in a horrible mess, generally of my own making, I am also reminded of this truth that when I cry out, my Heavenly Father will come “to the rescue.”

The calling out to God in desperation to “come rescue me” is beautifully expressed in this rendition of “I Need You Now” by Smokie Norful:

Earlier this week, I heard a message from Minister Phyllis Simmons-King of Christian Provision Ministries, entitled “Moving from Rescue to Restoration,” which appeared to be a perfect sequel to my annual Halloween reflections. The objective of her teaching was “To encourage you to stay encouraged while moving from rescue to restoration.” In expounding upon the cleansing of the 10 lepers in Luke 17, only one of whom returned to glorify God (“. . . and he was a Samaritan”), Minister Simmons-King, noted that there is an intermediary stage between “Rescue” and “Restoration,” that being “Recovery.” This phase involves a process that takes time, as we look to God and His Word to be strengthened and encouraged as we move toward our ultimate destination. The masterful teaching brought to mind the song “Restoration” by the Winans, the perfect way to cap off the initial sharing and the recent sequel:

God is able. . . more than able

July 9, 2014

Ephesians-3-20-21

One of the most powerful expressions of God’s desire for His people is found in the prayer of Ephesians 3:14-21 (King James Version):

14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,

16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;

17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,

18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;

19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,

21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen

The Verse of the Day for July 9, 2014 is the benediction from that prayer found in culminating verses of the chapter:

Ephesians 3:20-21 KJV

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,

Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.=

That powerful prayer reveals our Heavenly Father’s intent toward believers that they might demonstrate the exceeding greatness of God’s power or ability recorded by Paul in those two verses which shine as crowning jewels in that exquisite revelation of God’s ability. The opening phrase of verse 20 brought to mind the expression that “God is able,” which in turn caused me to think of the lyrics to this song:

He’s able, He’s able, I know He’s able,
I know my Lord is able to carry me through.
He’s able, He’s able, I know He’s able,
I know my Lord is able to carry me through.
He healed the broken hearted and set the captive free,
He made the lame to walk again and caused the blind to see;
He’s able, He’s able, I know He’s able,
I know my Lord is able to carry me through.

Sometimes in the midst of very trying circumstances that seem to overwhelm us with their magnitude, we must be been strengthened and encouraged by the Word of God and by examples of those like Daniel and others who exercised astounding faith, reaping the benefits of their strong convictions. Without question, Daniel came to recognize that, indeed, “God is able.” Many times when we think about Daniel and the Hebrew children, we fail to realize that they were real people who faced real dangers. Just as we do also, they faced stressful situations that could overwhelm them and cause them to doubt God’s ability to come to their rescue. I heard a teaching on Daniel and his companions, and it inspired this poem which also uses Ephesians 3:20, as part of its introduction:

God is Able

If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us

from the fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of

your hand, O King.

Daniel 3:17

           

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly

above all that we ask or think, according to the power

that works in us,

Ephesians 3:20

 

God is able to do far above all we ask or think.

Life’s greatest challenges will not prevail, but they will shrink.

Although threatened on every hand, we refuse to back down.

In the midst of what seems to be defeat, we will still rebound.

If we have to, we will walk on water and will not sink.

Surrounded by disaster, even at the very brink

Of total defeat, so the enemy would have us to think.

Though confronted and intimidated, we stand our ground:

God is able.

 

We have learned that God’s Word and God’s will are always in sync,

That His Word nourishes and sustains us more than food or drink.

Our confident trust in God is nothing less than profound,

As we rise untouched, not singed, even from a fiery showdown.

Renewed in the spirit of our minds, we can now rethink:

God is able.

 

Like Daniel in the den of lions, we sometimes find ourselves in desperate, seemingly impossible situations from which we cannot extract ourselves on our own. When we think of such situations like that of Daniel, we must remember the King’s response when God delivered Daniel:

Daniel 6:27

He [the God of Daniel] delivers and rescues, and he works signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.

As I close this blog entry, another magnificent benediction from Jude comes to mind, a further reminder that God is able:

24Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,

25To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, now and ever. Amen.

We add the finishing touch with a song to reinforce the message than God is not only able, but “He is more than able”: