Give Reverence and Honor and Praise

Give Reverence and Honor and Praise

It has been my personal practice for many years to meditate on God’s Word as a way to renew my mind…as a way to overcome the lies of the enemy…as a way to encourage my own soul…as a way to exalt and magnify the Lord in my own life.

One day, while meditating on the majesty of Jesus…I was reminded that reality is much more than I can see with my physical eyes. What a sobering thought – to know that because of the blood of Jesus I have immediate and constant access to the reality of and the presence of Almighty God.

Reality is that, regardless of how mature I become in my faith, I am at constantly at war with the enemy and with my flesh. And it really is a constant battle to be able to keep my gaze fixed on the reality of spiritual truth.

One of those anchor truths I cling to and stand upon is this: God is pure and holy and worthy of praise. I do not wait until I am all “confessed up” concerning my sin, but enter into His presence boldly, much as a child who runs into his Father’s arms without one moment of hesitation.

It is in His presence that the light of His holiness shines on my sin. It is knowing that He loves me – His lovingkindness - that draws me to confess and repent. At that point, my worship takes on a whole new level of gratitude.

To give reverence to God is to approach Father God with the deepest respect and admiration. In other words, I give Him the highest place of esteem in my life.

To honor God means to exalt Him for all He has done for me. He is the One Who found me and saved me. He is the One who set me free and gave me a brand new identity. My identity has nothing to do with me. My salvation has nothing to do with my ability or talent. He is the one and only One who is worthy of that honor…so I honor Him for Who He is in the highest place in my life.

To praise God is to give Him thanks for Who He is. The attitude of gratitude is one of the greatest weapons in my arsenal against the lies of the enemy…and I use it daily in my life…in spite of how I feel…in spite of my circumstances…in spite of what others think of me…in spite of the lies of the enemy. When we praise and honor and show God reverence, we actually join with the realm of heaven in worship.

And the four living creatures, each one of them having six wings, are full of eyes around and within; and day and night they do not cease to say, "HOLY, HOLY, HOLY [is] THE LORD GOD, THE ALMIGHTY, WHO WAS AND WHO IS AND WHO IS TO COME.” Revelations 4:8 NASB

Let us give reverence and honor and praise to our God this day and join the realms and ranks of heaven as we exalt Father God for Who He is in our lives!

"Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created.” Revelations 4:11 NASB

Let us never forget that we were the lost ones. We did not find Jesus. He found us! Let that simple truth cause you to give reverence and honor and praise to Father God throughout the course of your day today…or better yet, each and every day! Put on the attitude of gratitude and watch how it affects the way you think…and watch victory flood into your mind as a result of this simple yet powerful attitude!

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to a podcast version of this teaching, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/give-reverence-and-honor-and-praise/

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By the Blood

By the Blood

One of my favorite old hymns is the song There Is Power In The Blood by Lewis Edgar Jones. From the first line of the first verse, I am at once grateful for and overwhelmed with God’s great love and forgiveness for me. “Would you be free from the burden of sin? There’s power in the blood! Power in the blood.” From my earliest memories that song has been a part of my life. Now that I am older and have lived through many fiery trials of life, the power of the blood of Christ has become more meaningful and even more precious to me than when I was a boy.

When I was born again and became a new creation, that blood began a holy transfusion in my spiritual veins that continues to this day. One of the first things I began to notice about believing in the power of the blood of Christ was in the victory over sin it afforded me. That transfusion took me from victim to victor…from weakling to overcomer!

"And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death.” Revelation 12:11 NASB

When I was bound in sin in my former life, I felt a distance between God and me that I could never come close to crossing. No matter how much I tried to earn or perform for His love and acceptance, I never quite measured up in my now strength, but then the appropriation of the blood of Christ into my life bridged the gap and distance between my God and me. The slate of my heart and mind were wiped clean in that moment and I became a new creation and child of God the moment I believed in the power of the blood of Jesus!

But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. Ephesians 2:13 NASB

The blood of Jesus Christ has accomplished so much more than I ever imagined as a child…but, again, now that I am older, I keep discovering more and more ways in which my life has benefited from the power of that blood! Here are just a few of the benefits of the blood of Jesus off the top of my head. See if they bear witness with your spirit!

The blood of Christ brings me near to God.

The blood washes me clean of all sin.

The blood makes me the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.

The blood seals my redemption from my old life.

The blood seals the covenant between me and my God.

The blood has the power to cleanse my thoughts and helps me renew my mind.

The blood paid the debt I owed for sin.

The blood gave me a transfusion of a brand new identity.

The blood of Christ gives me life.

The blood of Christ gives me instant access to the Father allowing me to come boldly before the throne of grace.

The blood of Christ makes me an overcomer!

16 "THIS IS THE COVENANT THAT I WILL MAKE WITH THEM AFTER THOSE DAYS, SAYS THE LORD: I WILL PUT MY LAWS UPON THEIR HEART, AND ON THEIR MIND I WILL WRITE THEM," [He then says,] 17 "AND THEIR SINS AND THEIR LAWLESS DEEDS I WILL REMEMBER NO MORE." 18 Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer [any] offering for sin. 19 Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and since [we have] a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled [clean] from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Hebrews 10:16-22 NASB

When I was lost in sin, I felt anything but righteous and holy and clean and worth anyone’s time or thought…but the blood of Jesus Christ made me righteous - in spite of my past…in spite of my present…in spite of my future. It made me the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. There is the true power in the blood!

21 But now apart from the Law [the] righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even [the] righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; 25 whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation [merciful relief from and forgiveness for our sin] in His blood through faith. [This was] to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; 26 for the demonstration, [I say,] of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Romans 3:21-26 NASB

The blood of Christ has sealed the deal for you as a new creation in Christ. Use the truth of the power of the blood to help you renew your mind today. There truly is power in the blood!

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to a teaching on the blood of Christ by Dennis Jernigan, listen to The Dennis Jernigan Podcast at http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/by-the-blood-1552335454/

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Some Thoughts on Grace

Some Thoughts on Grace

And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 2 Corinthians 12:19 NASB

I have heard that grace is the power and desire to do God’s will. It has also been described as the free and unmerited favor of God. My definition of grace? The merciful kindness of God that strengthens me by virtue of HIs presence in my life coupled with the belief that, not only does God love me, He LIKES me and likes being with me. If I love being with my children as much as I do, how much more does our heavenly Father love just BEING with me?!

That kind of grace - being favored of God - gets me through storms. It gets me through self-pity. It gets me through despair. It gets me through pain. It gets me through persecution. It gets me through suffering. It gets me through sorrow. It gets me through…and that is called BREAKthrough!

When self-pity tries to rule my thoughts, God’s grace calls to me with the kind words, “Look to Me, son. Look to the needs of others. You are not God. I Am.” The simple act of focusing on God and others produces an influx of grace that empowers me to get over myself.

When my illness causes my right hand to grow too weak to use my three right-most fingers, I call upon God’s grace to get me through the song I am playing on the piano with simplicity of using the two remaining fingers. No one seems to ever notice…so why should I fret over it?

When my illness causes my voice to grow too weak to utter sound as fully and freely as I want to, His grace replaces that weakness with passion that permeates my physical frailty and communicates at greater depths than mere volume ever could.

When my medication wears off and my mind grows foggy…when I feel as if my life is suddenly in slow motion…God’s grace meets me there and gives me strength to see what He sees. What I perceive as slow motion He sees as the ability to slow time down to the point of me being able to focus on His sweet, abiding presence.

When I am mocked or scorned for the sharing of my story of redemption…when the world tries to silence me, His grace somehow becomes a shield between me and those who persecute me and I am graced with the ability to see those who would harm or silence me as He does…in need of love.

When I feel alone due to my ever-increasingly politically incorrect message of hope…when I feel abandoned by the body of Christ…when my mind becomes overwhelmed with fear, His grace and boundless love becomes an anchor for my thoughts that helps me keep my head above water.

God is kind and merciful and faithful and true and loves me…and likes being with me. That is sufficient for me. That’s grace…

Dennis Jernigan

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A Shoulder to Cry On

A Shoulder to Cry On

A Shoulder to Cry On

Sometimes we can give and give and give – until we are burned out and used up. Since we are all called to minister the life of Christ, this burnout is not limited just to church personnel or leadership. We must always take the time to be filled up, or we’ll find ourselves dried up and useless. During such times - once I realize I am used up and poured out - I surrender to God! I give up to Him! I stop for a rest by pressing into His shoulder…

Philippians 3:7-14 NASB says, 7 But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 8 More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, 9 and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from [the] Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which [comes] from God on the basis of faith, 10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; 11 in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. 12 Not that I have already obtained [it] or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. 13 Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of [it] yet; but one thing [I do:] forgetting what [lies] behind and reaching forward to what [lies] ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

God’s Word is very clear as to how to stay refreshed and filled with strength to keep on keeping on. Take this passage from Isaiah for instance:

Isaiah 40:28-31 NASB: 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth Does not become weary or tired. His understanding is inscrutable. 29 He gives strength to the weary, And to [him who] lacks might He increases power. 30 Though youths grow weary and tired, And vigorous young men stumble badly, 31 Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up [with] wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.

Let us take a few minutes right now and cast our burdens and cares upon His strong and mighty and able shoulders. If you need to cry, cry. If you need to groan, then groan. If you need to simply sit still and soak in His presence, then do that. His shoulders are broad enough for all of us. Let’s lean into Him right now.

Matthew 11:28-30 NASB says, 28 "Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 "Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. 30 "For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

And…

1 Peter 5:6-10 NASB says, 6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, 7 casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. 8 Be of sober [spirit,] be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 But resist him, firm in [your] faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world. 10 After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen [and] establish you.

And finally, remember the words of the Psalmist David who said in Psalm 30:4-5 NASB, 4 Sing praise to the LORD, you His godly ones, And give thanks to His holy name. 5 For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for a lifetime; Weeping may last for the night, But a shout of joy [comes] in the morning.

Let us find rest in the Lord today and be filled to overflowing with His love and power and goodness…while being ready at all times to be poured out to those in need around us…and, once emptied, fill your tank again and again with His presence. Just lean into His strong and able shoulder and find rest for your soul. His shoulders are broad enough for us all!

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to a podcast on this subject and to hear the song, A Shoulder to Cry On, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/a-shoulder-to-cry-on/

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I Will Celebrate the Goodness of the Lord

I Will Celebrate the Goodness of the Lord

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to [His] purpose. Romans 8:28 NASB

Isn’t that one of the most amazing statements ever made in God’s Word…that God causes ALL things to work together for good?! When I meditate on such a deep truth, my mind comes near the point of exploding with joy! What does ALL things mean? I think it means ALL things!

In the book of Genesis, we find the story of Joseph. Joseph was a favorite if his father, Jacob, and this caused his brothers to despise him. They plotted his death but wound up selling him into slavery to some traveling Ishmaelites. He eventually winds up in the court of Potiphar in Egypt where he was exalted, by God, to a place of honor in that realm.

Years later, his own brothers and father were forced by famine to seek assistance from Egypt. Upon finding out who controlled the food supply - their brother, Joseph - the brothers feared for their lives. Jacob, just before his death, asked his other sons to seek forgiveness from their brother, Joseph. Joseph’s response?

"As for you, you meant evil against me, [but] God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.” Genesis 50:20 NASB

God used something field by hate for good to the very ones who acted with hatred in the first place. If that isn’t God causing all things to work together for good, I don’t know what is!

7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; 8 [we are] afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. 11 For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So death works in us, but life in you. 2 Corinthians 4: years 7-12

I am often reminded that the enemy does not care for the story of redemption. He hates it when one of God’s redeemed tells others that they, too, can be redeemed.

Once we have been set free from sin – and we realize it - no bondage can hold us! No prison can hold my heart.

Wherever my heart is, Jesus is. Wherever He is, His Holy Spirit is! Wherever His Holy Spirit is, there is liberty! I am free! I am redeemed! I celebrate this goodness of the Lord!

Life may bring affliction, but it will not crush me because God is good!

Life may bring perplexing confusion, but I have no reason to walk in despair or hopelessness because God is so good!

Life may bring persecution due to the very faith I have in Christ, but I will never be forsaken because God is so good!

Life may try and strike me down but I can never ever be destroyed because my God is that good!

God is good. Period.

2 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 4 And let endurance have [its] perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. James 1:2-4 NASB

Let us walk in the assurance of knowing that our God causes all things to work together for our good because He wants only what is best for us…even in the midst of sorrow, suffering, or pain! Our God is good! Our God is good!

Dennis Jernigan

To help you celebrate the goodness of the Lord, listen to The Dennis Jernigan Podcast:

http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/i-will-celebrate-the-goodness-of-the-lord/

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I Delight In You

I Delight In You

Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4 NASB

What does the word delight mean? The word found in Psalm 37:4 - anag in the Hebrew - literally means ‘to take exquisite care of, or to treat delicately, or to be extremely happy about, or to make merry about, or express joy over’. When I think about delighting myself in the Lord, I think about finding the deepest joy and satisfaction in knowing how deeply and massively I am loved by Him…but then, I begin to think about the reverse of that delight and wonder about whether or not He delights in me! This thought changes everything!

It was the lovingkindess of God that led me to repentance in the first place. He loved me right where I was in the midst of my sin - loved me even when I turned my back on Him. He loved me right where I was but loved me enough to not leave me there. Why? Because I was the joy set before Him that sent Him to the cross! If that’s not delight, I don’t know what is!

Another expression of God’s delight in me was the way He treated me while I was still sinner. I felt condemned to hell by the lies of the enemy - and by many in the church - but God’s delight in me as expressed through His kindness toward me led me right to His waiting open arms of love!

Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? Romans 2:4 NASB

And speaking of God’s lovingkindness…

The LORD favors those who fear Him, Those who wait for His lovingkindness. Psalm 147:11 NASB

The Word ‘favors’ in Psalm 147:11 literally means ‘to be pleased with’ or ‘to be debt-free’. When we fear God - or give highest reverence and deference to Him - we find His favor. We find His pleasure in us! Our sin-debt has been forgiven! We find our hearts wanting to take delight in Him for all He has done for us!

1 Praise the LORD! For it is good to sing praises to our God; For it is pleasant [and] praise is becoming. 2 The LORD builds up Jerusalem; He gathers the outcasts of Israel. 3 He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds. 4 He counts the number of the stars; He gives names to all of them. 5 Great is our Lord and abundant in strength; His understanding is infinite. 6 The LORD supports the afflicted…Psalm 147:1-6 NASB

One day as I meditated on Psalm 147 and realized how much delight God takes in me, I was overwhelmed with a sense of gratitude. You see, when I think about my life – the time before I realized that God loved me – it becomes very easy to be grateful. I cannot think about my deliverance from the bondage of sin without thanking God and delighting in His love for me! Reality is this: God takes more delight in our presence than we could possibly take in His! Just read Psalm 147 and Romans 8 which says:

35 Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? ... 37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:35, 37-39 NASB

I will end with a personal translation of Zephaniah 3:17 that I came up with many years ago. The King James Version says, “The LORD thy God in the midst of thee [is] mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.” The Dennis Jernigan translation after a deep study of the Hebrew text says this:

The eternal self-existent God, the God Who is three in one; He Who dwells in the center of your being is a powerful and valiant warrior. He has come to set you free, to keep you safe, and to bring you victory. He is cheered and He beams with exceeding joy and takes pleasure in your presence. He has engraved a place for Himself in you and there He quietly rests in His love and affection for you. He cannot contain Himself at the thought of you and with the greatest of joy spins around wildly in anticipation over you…and has placed you above all other creations and in the highest place in His priorities. In fact, He shouts and sings in triumph, joyfully proclaiming the gladness of His heart in a song of rejoicing! All because of you! (Translation by Dennis Jernigan)

Let us become as children today, simply trusting our Father by delighting in His presence and allowing Him to lavish His great redeeming love upon us. Sing to Him and listen for His song being sung over you…and allow Him to delight in you!

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to a podcast containing the song ‘I Delight in You’ along with teaching on God’s delight in us, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/i-delight-in-you/

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A Gift Horse and Other Expressions of God’s Love

A Gift Horse and Other Expressions of God’s Love

But He [Jesus] said, "The things that are impossible with people are possible with God.” Luke 18:27 NASB

October of 1994 was a very special time in the life of my family. God was sending the music all over the world and Melinda and I and our children were traveling all over the US to share the music and the story of my deliverance. It seemed that with each new step we took, God was there in our midst calling us to ever deeper expressions of faith…leading us to deeper places of trust in Him and in His ability to provide for us…in very meaningful and unexpected ways.

One afternoon before a ministry time at Evangel Fellowship in Spindale, North Carolina, we were met with one of those meaningful and unexpected encounters with the deep love of God. It was during this ministry trip that the Lord began to teach me and my children a deeper lesson in trust than we had ever dreamed of.

After spending the afternoon riding a horse belonging to our - at that time - new friends, the Inmans (Sandy, Janet and Cody), our children decided they would like a horse also - especially my daughter, Annē! Janet told me she would agree with us in prayer that the Lord would provide us a horse. So, we prayed asking the Lord to bring us a horse….and I forgot all about it over the next few days, but not Annē. She kept asking when the Lord would bring a horse to us. I kept saying, “When it’s time, He will bring us a horse.” Not in my wildest dreams did I ever expect what happened next!

Eight days later, while ministering in West Monroe, Louisiana, a couple walked up to me after a worship service and informed me the Lord had directed them to give us something that would not fit in the offering plates that day. Curious now, I asked what in the world they wanted to give us that would not fit in an offering plate and they said, “We know this may sound crazy - but we believe the Lord would have us give you…a horse!” Our faith shot up about a thousand percent! We were now the owners of Monroe (which means ‘trusting’!) the Magnificent, a beautiful Paso Fino two year old.

But God did not stop there. Since Monroe was an unbroken stallion, we sold him and bought three horses for the children. Since that time, we have been given 2 other horses. This so bolstered the faith of my daughter, Galen, that she asked the Lord for a pet pig. While driving home from church one day soon after that prayer request, we passed a local farmer who seemed to be chasing something through the tall grass of his pasture. We stopped and asked what was going on. He told us he was chasing his potbellied pigs that kept escaping their pen and was going to get rid of them. Of course, we told him we would take them if he didn’t want them. He simply said, “If you can catch them, they’re yours!” And Galen had her pigs. Baby Bop and Rex lived with us on the farm for many years.

Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4 NASB

My point? Our God is a big God who delights in HIs children, Who delights in giving us the desires of our hearts. We need to trust Him with child-like faith just as my children did when they were younger. I will never forget the joy on the faces of my children when those horses and pigs came into our lives. Never…and I can only imagine that if the joy I experienced as an earthly father is any indication of God’s joy and delight in expressing His love for us, we have only touched the tip of the iceberg in realizing just how much our God loves us and delights in giving us the desires of our hearts…regardless of our circumstances!

But as for me, I trust in You, O LORD, I say, "You are my God.” Psalm 31:14 NASB

O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water. Psalm 63:1 NASB

Then he [Jesus] said, "I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven.” Matthew 18:3 NLT

Let us become as children today, simply trusting our Father by delighting in His presence and allowing Him to lavish His great redeeming love upon us.

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to a podcast version of this teaching along with a song inspired by the events in the story, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/you-are-my-god-1549385479/

The cover picture is courtesy of https://pixabay.com/photos/horse-field-girl-horse-girl-field-2536537/

A Few Thoughts on the Holy Spirit

A Few Thoughts on the Holy Spirit

We often speak about the person of God the Father and the person of God the Son, but we often shy away from speaking openly about the person of God the Holy Spirit. Why is that?

As I honestly pose that question to myself, the honest answer is that there are so many different views on the Holy Spirit. Some say we are granted the Holy Spirit at the point of conversion. Some say we must also have a filling of the Holy Spirit as evidenced by the speaking in tongues. Some say we must have a specific moment of that filling as a one-time event, while others say we need to be filled as often as possible.

Some say we do not need a second filling beyond the impartation of the Holy Spirit at the moment of salvation while the other side of that coin says you must be filled and speak in tongues to be truly filled with the Holy Spirit. I say the enemy will use anything - even our views on the Holy Spirit - to bring division to the body of Christ.

I have been asked by non-charismatics if I speak in tongues. I have been asked by charismatics if I speak in tongues. Both want to draw a line in the sand that says basically, “If you do speak in tongues, we have no basis for true fellowship” while the other side says, “If you do not speak in tongues, we have no basis of fellowship.” I love responding to both views with “It’s none of your business whether I do or whether I don’t if it is going to lead to division.”

My personal belief is that we are granted the Holy Spirit at the moment of salvation…and that I need to be filled with the Spirit as often as I need to be filled with the Holy Spirit! Is salvation a one-time moment or are we being saved each and every day? Do we have need of the Bread of Life one time, or do we need to partake of the Bread of Life every day? Do we need Living Water one time, or do we need to be drinking in the Living Water of Jesus Christ every day? I needed the power of the Holy Spirit at the very instance of my salvation…and I have discovered that I pour out that Spirit to others every day - and that, as a result, I need to be filled again and again and again!

Whether I speak in tongues is not the issue. The true evidence of the filling of the Holy Spirit is the fruit that filling bears and produces in and through my life:

[Galatians 5:19-26 NASB] 19 Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21 envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. 26 Let us not become boastful, challenging one another, envying one another. [Galatians 5:19-26 NASB]

How can we tell if someone is filled with the Holy Spirit? We simply observe whether or not we see the fruit of the Spirit in their lives…but whether we see that fruit or not, we are not released from the greatest commandment of all: to love our neighbor. We are commanded to love. We are not commanded to agree!

Personally, I know many people who do not speak in tongues but whom I consider full of the Holy Spirit. Conversely, I know many people who speak in tongues who are full of the Holy Spirit. Personally, I have met people who say they are filled with the Holy Spirit who show no such fruit…in both camps!

In all honesty, I do not understand how I ever lived without the belief in the power of the Holy Spirit before I was born again! His Spirit is life to me…Bread of Life and Living Water to me…filling me as often as necessary with strength for that next hard step. He is with me through storm and through fiery trial…through pain and suffering…always pouring out grace to my heart and mind. He is as real as Father God and as real as Jesus Christ…and is as near as I will allow Him to be. All I know is He is both mystery and wonder and that I need Him desperately.

The more we know of the Holy Spirit and the more we communicate with Him, the more we will realize that we need Him very desperately. I also believe that Holy Spirit is always with us – which means that I welcome Him to come to me…whether I know I need Him in a given moment or not. He is God. I am not.

Try to imagine what the first day of that Pentecost in the upper room must have sounded like…felt like…looked like…smelled like…when the power of the Holy Spirit burst upon those gathered there! I WANT that power! I NEED that power! I need my heart to be full of that mighty rushing Wind to blow out the chaff of this world!

[Act 2:1-4 NASB] 1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance. [Act 2:1-4 NASB]

I do not fully understand the full power of the Holy Spirit…and I do not fully understand all His manifestations - but I know as I empty myself out, He is the only One Who can truly fill me again and again as often as necessary. Let us cry out to Him and allow Him to fill any empty places in our hearts and minds each and every day of our lives!

[Zechariah 4:6 NASB] 6 Then he said to me, "This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel saying, 'Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,' says the LORD of hosts. [Zechariah 4:6 NASB]

It is futility for us to think we can live abundant, overcoming lives apart from the power of the Holy Spirit. Let us not be afraid to seek Him and to be filled with His refreshing presence. After all, He is always with us. We might as well enjoy and take advantage of that reality. It’s called relationship! Welcome the Holy Spirit of God into your life today and be refreshed…as often as needed!

Be filled with love.

Be filled with joy.

Be filled with peace.

Be filled with patience.

Be filled with kindness.

Be filled with goodness.

Be filled with faithfulness.

Be filled with gentleness.

Be filled with self-control.

Just be filled with the presence and power of the Holy Spirit…I don’t care whether you speak in tongues or not!

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to a podcast on the Holy Spirit, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/holy-spirit-come-1548861430/

Photo courtesy of https://pixabay.com/illustrations/fire-heart-heart-fire-love-symbol-961194/

I Throw My Heart To The Wind

I Throw My Heart To The Wind

1 How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. 3 He will be like a tree [firmly] planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers. 4 The wicked are not so, But they are like chaff which the wind drives away. Psalm 1:1-4

When I think of repentance, I think of it as something good rather than something to be dreaded. Jesus said in Luke 5:32 in the NASB, ”I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” The word ‘repentance’ literally means ‘to change one’s mind’. I prefer to think of repentance as agreeing with God!

When meditating on the word repentance, I was amazed at how much it reminded me of the old ways of separating the grain from the chaff. Chaff is the unnecessary debris left from the stalks and seed casings and winnowing was the method used to separate the grain from the chaff when grain was harvested in the days before modern harvesting machines and equipment.

Once the grain - like wheat, for instance - was harvested, the farmer would take a winnowing fork or shovel-like implement and cast a scoop of the grain into the air. Once airborne, the wind would blow through the grain and anything not a part of the seed would be blown away leaving just the desired grain to fall to the ground.

The picture I saw in my mind was one of my heart being cast before the wind of the Holy Spirit.  No man can do that for me.  This is another aspect of trust - to be willing to bare my heart to the Father and cast myself before Him.  This allows impurities to be brought into the light and blown away by the wind of the Spirit.  This is a position of and an act of humility and complete trust.  I cannot even trust myself - but I must trust myself to the Holy Spirit.

[Psa 1:1-4 NASB] 1 How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. 3 He will be like a tree [firmly] planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers. 4 The wicked are not so, But they are like chaff which the wind drives away.

Let’s throw our hearts to the wind of the Spirit today and allow him to blow away any lies of the enemy…blow away any cares we are not casting upon Him…to blow away anything we do not need that does not glorify Him in some way. Repentance is a good thing.

John the Baptist said of Jesus in [Mat 3:11-12 NASB] 11 "As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 12 "His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clear His threshing floor; and He will gather His wheat into the barn, but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”

May we throw our hearts to the wind of the Holy Spirit today and allow Him to blow away the chaff - the debris - of our lives and our thoughts and bring us into a deeper place of healing and strength and understanding of our identity in Him than every before.

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to a podcast regarding this teaching, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/i-throw-my-heart-to-the-wind/

Image courtesy of https://pixabay.com/photos/heart-hands-food-grains-cereals-1394204/

Take Me There

Take Me There

In March of 1993, I took a giant step of faith I believed the Lord had directed me to take. I felt led to begin what I thought would be a year long sabbatical from my position as worship leader to the church body I had been a part of for almost 8 years. By May 24, 1993, I knew God was leading me away from my position of worship leader and into a broader ministry platform…which scared me greatly!

Little did I know but God was preparing to grow me up just a bit - OK - a whole lot! Like the moment a fledgling eagle steps to the edge of the nest and the parent gives it a little nudge right out into thin air and in that moment must spread his wings and fly - or die!

Part of the revelation the Lord brought to me came as I realized I still had much of the old grave clothes on concerning what I thought people thought of me. I still had many man-pleasing attitudes and often allowed them to dictate my decision making rather than what was pleasing to God.

Along with the truth of God came the usual lies and attacks of the enemy. More often than not, these lies were vain imaginations on my part. Often, the lies came from well-intentioned friends and their advice - leaving me with a choice: Would I obey God or would I do what was pleasing to men?

This song came as I sought to encourage myself in the Lord, realizing I had believed so many lies that I had come to the point of wanting to give up on the body of Christ itself - and on my own life - altogether! My ultimate conclusion and the words of this song say it all: Christ alone is my hope…and this song is my declaration of that fact!

Let’s look at the lyrics of the song, Take Me There, and find the truth of God’s Word as an encouragement to our souls today:

Verse One

When I took up the cross of Christ,

I knew I would suffer.

Then Jesus said to His disciples, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.” Matthew 16:24 NASB

8 More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, 9 and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from [the] Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which [comes] from God on the basis of faith, 10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; 11 in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Philippians 3:8-11 NASB

When He took me from death to life,

He gave me love like no other.

"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have [it] abundantly.” John 10:10 NASB

Lord, all I know is that I love just being with You.

I will follow You, Lord, it doesn’t matter where.

All I know is that I love and want to lift You higher, Lord.

Won’t You take me there?

You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever. Psalm 16:11 NASB

Verse Two

To live is Christ, to die is gain,

Life is found in dying.

The driest times make for sweeter rain,

Simple love satisfying.

For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. Philippians 1:21 NASB

Lord, all I know is that I love just being with You.

Rain or shine or confusion in the air,

All I know is that I love and want to lift You higher, Lord.

Won’t You take me there?

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. 1 John 4:18 NASB

Chorus

There, where the Lamb will lay down with the lion

And the wolf will dwell with the lamb, And the leopard will lie down with the young goat, And the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little boy will lead them. Isaiah 11:6 NASB

There, where there is no pain or strife,

There, where there is no night, no dying

“…and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be [any] death; there will no longer be [any] mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.” Revelations 21:4 NASB

There, where Living Water flows and the Lamb alone is Light.

And in that day living waters will flow out of Jerusalem, half of them toward the eastern sea and the other half toward the western sea; it will be in summer as well as in winter. Zecheraiah 16:8 NASB

Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, "I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” John 8:12 NASB

There, where the Lord, Jesus Christ will reign forever,

There, where we will worship around His throne

And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, "To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, [be] blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.” Revelations 5:13 NASB

There, where the blood bought Church will come together,

There, where all the redeemed of the Lord will rejoice before Him ever

And they sang a new song, saying, "Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood [men] from every tribe and tongue and people and nation. Revelations 5:9 NASB

There, where the Father says, “Well done! Welcome into your forever home”

"His master said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful [servant]. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’” Matthew 25:21 NASB

When faced with the cares of the world, remember the words of this song and use it as a catalyst to remind you of the truth of God’s Word and its power and authority in your life today.

Dennis Jernigan

7 I will bless the LORD who has counseled me; Indeed, my mind instructs me in the night. 8 I have set the LORD continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. 9 Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely. 10 For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. 11 You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever. Psalm 16:7-11 NASB

To listen to the song, Take Me There, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/take-me-there-1546981686/

Picture courtesy of https://pixabay.com/photos/the-road-beams-path-forest-nature-815297/

Blessed Be The Name Of The Lord

Blessed Be The Name Of The Lord

A few thoughts on why we should bless the Lord - at all times…

What does it mean to bless someone? In normal, everyday terms, we use it to mean we want someone else to know what they mean to us…to show honor or extend favor upon that someone. When we bless another person, we essentially tell them how valuable they are to us…we tell them what they mean to us…we express gratitude to them for being who they are to us!

We essentially do the same thing when we bless God. In the Psalms, the word most often translated as ‘bless’ is the Hebrew word ‘barak’ which literally means ‘to kneel’ or ‘to bless’. Psalm 34:1, a Psalm of David, says…

I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. Psalm 34:1 NASB

Blessing God is an act of praise. To kneel is to express adoration, or reverence, or praise. We can, of course, bless God with our thoughts…but those thoughts - to be true blessing of God - must be acted upon by spoken word, songs of praise, or physical action. Blessing God - praising Him just for Who He is - has benefits for the believer.

Sing for joy in the LORD, O you righteous ones; Praise is becoming to the upright. Psalm 33:1 NASB

The word ‘becoming’ means ‘to make one look beautiful’…or in the Jernigan translation, ‘praise suits you and looks good on you as a believer.’

Blessing the Lord leads us to wise counsel and can be experienced even as we sleep…because we never stop our inner conversation; our thought life.

I will bless the LORD who has counseled me; Indeed, my mind instructs me in the night. Psalm 16:7 NASB

Blessing God has direct benefits for our soul…cleansing our thoughts, bringing our emotions into the kingdom realm, and helping us see the will of god for our lives.

1 [A Psalm] of David. Bless the LORD, O my soul, And all that is within me, [bless] His holy name. 2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits; ... 22 Bless the LORD, all you works of His, In all places of His dominion; Bless the LORD, O my soul! Psalm 103:1-2; 22 NASB

Blessing God helps us with our point of view by giving us a grand and majestic kingdom perspective.

Bless the LORD, O my soul! O LORD my God, You are very great; You are clothed with splendor and majesty…Psalm 104:1 NASB

When should we bless the Lord?

But as for us, we will bless the LORD From this time forth and forever. Praise the LORD! Psalm 115:18 NASB

Blessing God is an act of surrender to His Lordship.

Lift up your hands to the sanctuary And bless the LORD. Psalm 134:2 NASB

Blessing the Lord is an act of faith in and an expression of our belief in His holy goodness…in spite of our circumstances.

He said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, And naked I shall return there. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the name of the LORD.” Job 1:21 NASB

When should we bless the Lord? Just the we feel like it? Just when things are going well?

1 [A Psalm] of David. Bless the LORD, O my soul, And all that is within me, [bless] His holy name. 2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits; 3 Who pardons all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases; 4 Who redeems your life from the pit, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion; 5 Who satisfies your years with good things, [So that] your youth is renewed like the eagle. Psalm 103:1-5 NASB

If those are just a sampling of the benefits of blessing the Lord, why would we ever allow circumstances or feelings to dictate to us whether or not we should bless the Lord? If anything, we should bless Him all the more - right in the midst of our fiery trials and dire circumstances, right in the middle of pain and sorrow…right in the middle of life itself!

Let us make the conscious choice to bless the Lord today - and every day. Life will be more abundant as a direct result!

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to more teaching on blessing God, listen to The Dennis Jernigan Podcast at http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/blessed-be-the-name-of-the-lord-1546981543/

Jesus Reigns

Jesus Reigns

The LORD will reign forever, Your God, O Zion, to all generations. Praise the LORD! Psalm 146:10 NASB 

Whether we like it or not, we all face battles in our lives…sometimes to the point of feeling overwhelmed. In the middle of a battle it can be difficult to feel we are winning. On a physical battlefield these days news from the front line reaches us instantly via our technological wonders. When reinforcements are needed, help is dispatched within minutes. When news of breakthroughs needs to be communicated to other units to complete a battle plan, that news gets there. But in a spiritual sense, we do not often see or hear the physical news in such a timely fashion…or do we?

We know we are never spiritually alone – even when it feels like we are. We know that in the end, we win. Yet at times the battle wearies us so much that we feel like giving up – and, indeed, many do. Reality is this: we know the enemy is after us because we follow Christ…but we also know that Jesus rules and reigns – regardless of our circumstances or perceived defeats.

When I am attacked I must remember that the Lord has reinforcements there by His Spirit. When I am besieged I must remember that He has already established a battle plan and equipped me to win. And just as on the physical battlefield, He is there commanding and communicating with His troops. We just need to remember that we are able to hear His voice if we have ears to hear.

8 You will only look on with your eyes And see the recompense of the wicked. 9 For you have made the LORD, my refuge, [Even] the Most High, your dwelling place. 10 No evil will befall you, Nor will any plague come near your tent. 11 For He will give His angels charge concerning you, To guard you in all your ways. 12 They will bear you up in their hands, That you do not strike your foot against a stone. Psalm 91:8-12 NASB

19 You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder. James 2:19 NASB

7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. James 4:7 NASB

Just what does Jesus reign over?

Following is a song I received on this subject way back in 2008. It feels more relevant than ever right now!

Jesus Reigns

WORDS & MUSIC - Dennis Jernigan - August 13, 2008

Verse One

We wrestle not with flesh and blood.

We stand against the night!

Forces of darkness come against us!

We must stand and fight!

12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high [places]. Ephesians 6:12 NASB

Put on the armor!

Put on the love!

We are the army washed in blood!

Put on the armor!

Prepare for war!

Let us declare that Christ is Lord!

11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual [forces] of wickedness in the heavenly [places.] 13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Ephesians 6:11-13 NASB

Chorus

Jesus reigns

Over every curse of darkness,

Breaking chains!

Jesus reigns!

By His blood

He washes every sin away!

We must stand in the light

Against the darkness of the night!

By the blood, let us stand

And declare to every man

That Jesus reigns!

Bridge

He will reign tomorrow!

He will reign today!

Even in our sorrow

He will make a way!

When the world in darkness

Seems to grow insane

He remains the constant!

He remains the same!

He will reign! He will reign!

He will reign! He will reign!

8 Jesus Christ [is] the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8 NASB

The world around us may seem out of control, but Jesus STILL reigns! We must hold fast to this truth and remain steadfast in our faith. Just me…we win because Jesus reigns!

9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:9-11 NASB

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to the song, Jesus Reigns, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/jesus-reigns/

Run To The Battle

Run To The Battle

For You have girded me with strength for battle;
You have subdued under me those who rose up against me.
Psalm 18:39 NASB

"I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.”
Matthew 16:18 NASB


Why do people who say they have received Jesus and have been delivered from their old lives, suddenly fall back into their old ways of thinking? Personally, I believe they grew tired of fighting. Make no mistake, the battleground for every person who will ever exist is the mind.

The enemy knows this and uses it against us…our thought-life. Reality is this: we never stop thinking or never stop the conversation in our mind. What we think reveals who we are and makes the difference between failure and victory…between life and death.

Every feeling we have is attached to a thought we think. It stands to reason that if we change the way we think we can change the way we feel. If I think myself a failure when I fall and choose to not get back up, then I am a failure…but if I decided to keep getting back up and seeing myself as a victor, then I can fall a hundred times and still rise as victorious over each failure. I just need to remind myself that I am at war with the liar…and that I have been granted the weaponry and arsenal necessary for victory in this life…and it all begins with renewing my mind!

For as he thinks within himself, so he is. Proverbs 23:7a NASB

To hear the song RUN TO THE BATTLE, listen to The Dennis Jernigan Podcast at http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/run-to-the-battle-1546371984/

I pondered all the reasons I have never even entertained giving up the fight for freedom. A huge reason is because I have chosen to believe God’s Word over my own feelings…and have learned how to trace feelings back to the thought that brought those feelings about…and then made the choice to renounce such stinkin’ thinkin’ and replace the stinkin’ thinkin’ with God’s Word. I believe He surrounds me with songs of deliverance - and songs of warfare begin to pour out of my soul.

You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble; You surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah. Psalm 32:7 NASB

I also have some great examples of what to do when the enemy is at war with my mind. Rather than cower in fear, I choose to run TOWARD the battle rather than to run in the opposite direction. Did David run away from Goliath or did he run out to face him? Did Jesus run away from the cross or did He go willingly to face it? They ran toward the giant and the cross!

That is what we must do with things that cause us fear. We must run toward them with the Truth rather than run away from them allowing the fear to dictate our lives! In my current health crisis, I choose to run toward the diagnosis with God’s Truth rather than to run from it, using this weapon of my warfare - the Word of God:

As for you, you meant evil against me, [but] God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive. Genesis 50:20 NASB

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to [His] purpose. Romans 8:28 NASB

I can face the giants and the crosses I must bear in this life knowing God loves ma and that He wastes nothing…that what the enemy means for evil, God will use for my good and His glory!

Knowing Jesus is worth any and all struggles I have had to face thus far…and are worth any I will need to fight in the future. Such knowledge keeps the grace of God alive and well deep in my soul. Just as in my marriage when I say ‘divorce is not an option’, I also say similarly in my fight for freedom, ‘surrender to the old life is not an option.’

I think many lose the battle simply because they grow tired of fighting. What I have learned in the past 37 years is this: I do not wait for the battle to come to me. I run to the battle and storm the gates of hell…because I am guaranteed the victory!

Let’s think about this one more time: Did David wait for Goliath to come to him or did he run to face the giant head-on? He faced Him head-on!

When faced with the laying down of life on the cross of redemption, did Jesus wait for that cross to come to Him to did He run to the cross? What if Jesus had cowered in fear and not gone on to face the cross on our behalf? We - far too often - allow fear to take away victory that lies just in front of us as we face the giants in our own lives?

When did I overcome my old identity? When I faced it with then truth of who God says I am!

When did I overcome always thinking of myself as a victim rather than a victor? When I faced the selfish giant of victimization head-on with the truth of the victory sealed for me with the resurrection power and redeeming love of Jesus Christ!

Believers, let us stop cowering at and having our livers dictated by fear today. Here and now! Let us run to the battles we face and meet them head-on! Truth wins! How do I know this? Because we are loved!

37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37-39 NASB

…and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free. John 8:32 NASB

We never get to the truth if we never take the first step truth requires and that is our own honest confession. Honesty is facing the giants in our lives. Put them down by facing them with the truth! You were born again to win! Be the victor God calls you to be!

Dennis Jernigan

Always Be Grateful

Always Be Grateful

Death and life are in the power of the tongue,

And those who love it will eat its fruit.

Proverbs 18:21 NASB

Recently, Melinda and I were blessed with our eleventh grandchild! This great blessing came in the midst of great personal trials for me. I had been diagnosed with vocal cord damage almost 6 months before and, as if that were not enough, I received an initial diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease (which has since been confirmed). Needless to say, it was difficult to not dwell on my circumstances - especially since these diagnoses meant a paradigm shift for us in our public ministry as well as in out finances. My soul was suffering and in great anguish. So much so that on many days I did not feel like moving…did not feel like a man…felt defeated.

Of course, I knew these were all lies and I knew that somehow, someway, God would use all these things for my good and for His glory. I honestly felt as if my life was being pulled away from me. Melinda - my wife - was amazing as she sought to speak truth and hope to my soul…but even this - knowing I was taking a toll on her - caused me great anguish. I did not feel like facing anyone in public and basically began to withdraw from life. The enemy - the liar - had me so focused on ME and my pain and my potential loss that I had to literally speak out loud to my own soul at times, “That is a lie! This is not who I am! God loves me!” I was reminded of the time King David made a tactical error in battle and the wives and children of his army were taken captive by the enemy. David’s response was key for me:

“Moreover David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.”

1 Samuel 30:6 NASB

David encouraged himself in the Lord! For weeks, I practiced this daily - even when I did not feel like it. It felt as if I was constantly preaching to my own soul for hours each day, often leaving me emotionally spent and needy. My wake-up call came when Theodore Fox Songer was born on January 14, 2019. This was two weeks prior to the official diagnosis of Parkinson’s - but it was a wonderful blessing just to have my mind taken off of ME for a change! During the all-nighter the birth of Theo became, I preached this truth to myself: “Don’t focus on what you don’t have. Focus on what you DO have…”

After Theo was born and we said our goodbyes that afternoon, we had a two-hour drive back home…with having gotten very little sleep during the night. To keep myself focused on the road and to stay awake, I prayed for Theo. As I pondered what to pray for him, I began to think about the possibility of what I would want Theo to know should there come a time I was no longer around. The Spirit began to direct me to the focus of my own circumstances and trials and I began to pray this over my newly born grandson,”Father God, help him to always have a grateful heart regardless of his circumstances…”

Soon, I began to speak the words ‘always be grateful’…and as I spoke them, a melody began to form in my heart. As I sang the lines concerning the fact that we can choose to be joyful just as easily as we can choose to be sad, the song began to be born. By the time we arrived home, I had most of the song as it is…and then it dawned on me: The song was just as much for me as it was for my grandson…just as much for the believer as it is for my grandchildren and children. We are people of choice. We may not have a choice as to our circumstances or even to what tempts us, but we always have a choice as to how we will respond to those circumstances and temptations. Always.

It then becomes a matter of perspective. Simply put, we can choose to see what the liar wants us to see or we can choose to see what the Father wants us to see. The last time I checked, this was God’s Word regarding this matter:

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to [His] purpose.

Romans 8:28 NASB

Victory looks like life lived and seen from the Father’s perspective - in spite of our circumstances…and the first step in this victory begins with a grateful heart…no matter what…we can always be grateful.


Dennis Jernigan

…in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 NASB

Always Be Grateful

WORDS & MUSIC

Dennis Jernigan

January 14, 2019

For Theodore Fox Songer


Verse

Some people choose to live like they're dying 

Some people choose to enjoy their life 

Some choosing joy in spite of the things they don't have 

Some live controlled by their circumstances 

Some see a wall some see second chances 

Don't waste your time controlled by the things you don't have 


Chorus

You can choose joy in the midst of the sad

Even in sorrow you can choose to be glad 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have

Go through the storm while enjoying the rain 

Gaze at the healing 

Just glance at the pain 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have Just 


Verse

Some people choose to only see sorrow 

To live in the past or live in tomorrow 

Live in the present in spite of the things you don't have 

Some people choose to see only darkness 

Live in the pain of bitter and heartless 

Don't waste your time controlled by the things you don't have 

Chorus

You can choose joy in the midst of the sad

Even in sorrow you can choose to be glad 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have 

Go through the storm while enjoying the rain 

Gaze at the healing 

Just glance at the pain 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have Just

Chorus

You can choose hope in the midst of despair 

Even when lonely you can meet with God there 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have

Go through the fire 

Come out shining like gold 

God loves you with love that will never let go 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have


Chorus

You can choose joy in the midst of the sad

Even in sorrow you can choose to be glad 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have 

Go through the storm while enjoying the rain 

Gaze at the healing 

Just glance at the pain 

Always be grateful 

Always be grateful for all that you have

Fear

Fear

When we come to understand just how intensely God’s love for us burns in His heart, the lies of the enemy are burned away by that very love! When I fear, I remind myself of God’s love for me and that lie is burned away and peace returns to my soul. When I am anxious, I do the same. When I am hurting, I do the same. God’s love transcends our human weakness and leaves us at peace even in the midst of a storm or in the midst of suffering or pain. This raises the questions “What is fear and why do I still experience it as a believer?”

What is fear? a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid. 1

What causes fear? We are still human and still refer to our old ways of thinking from time to time. Following is a brief list of why I personally fall into fear from time to time:

• Past experiences

• Upbringing

• Physical harm

• Emotional harm

• Personality type

• Unrealistic view of life/vain imagination

• Impending danger

• Physical pain

• Phobias

What is the remedy for fear? Following are some tips from God’s Word regarding how to deal with fear:

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

1 John 4:18 NASB

We must constantly remind ourselves of God’s great abiding, enduring love for us in spite of the lies of the enemy!

We must remember that we are at war and that this war is for our thoughts and is fought on the spiritual battlefields of our minds.

[2Co 10:3-6 NASB] 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 of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. 5 [We are] destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and [we are] taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, 6 and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete.

We must remember that our God wastes nothing. Go to the worst case scenario - death - and even there, God is with us and we are with Him.

[Rom 8:28 NASB] 28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to [His] purpose.

Let us believe and receive God’s love for us today and put an end to fear…as often as necessary!

Dennis Jernigan

My Dying Breath

My Dying Breath

WORDS & MUSIC - Dennis Jernigan - December 21, 2018

As I ponder how to face my current health issues - damaged vocal cord and possible diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease - my mind tends to gravitate toward the worst case scenario. Who am I without my voice at full strength? Am I an effective servant of the King and for the Kingdom? What if the Parkinson’s continues to affect my ability to play the piano? Will I still be useful to the King and to the Kingdom? How does all this affect my identity in Christ? The simple answer? What is the King’s point of view in all this?

Concerning my voice, as long as I can sing I will sing. I’ll just need to find another way to do it with passion even in a weakened state.

Concerning the effects of Parkinson’s, as long as my mind functions I can still minister the wisdom of the King and Kingdom even in my weakened state.

It all boils down to my point of view. What the enemy means for evil, God will use for my good and His glory. He wastes nothing.

I can either allow the weaknesses of my life to define me or I can use them for the kingdom. One brings death while the other brings life.

The Apostle Paul said it like this:

[2Co 12:7-10 NASB] 7 Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me--to keep me from exalting myself! 8 Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. 9 And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 10 Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ's sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.

This song was born as I thought about how to view my current situation and circumstances from God’s point of view. My prayer is that you would find it useful in helping you do the same in the midst of your current trials and circumstances.

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to one verse and chorus of the song, My Dying Breath, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/dennis-jernigan-health-update-and-patreon/

My Dying Breath

WORDS & MUSIC - Dennis Jernigan - December 21, 2018

Verse

If I found my voice unable to sing

I would simply find another way to praise You

If I found myself with nothing left to bring

May my praise be heard with every breath I breathe

Chorus

I will praise You!

Praise You until there’s absolutely nothing left!

I will praise You!

I’ll praise You ’til there’s nothing left!

I’ll praise You with my dying breath!

Verse

If I found myself unable to move

I would simply find another way to praise You

If I found my eyes the only thing to use

May my praise be heard, Lord, every time I blink

Chorus

I will praise You!

Praise You until there’s absolutely nothing left!

I will praise You!

I’ll praise You ’til there’s nothing left!

I’ll praise You with my dying breath!

Bridge

Blessing and honor and glory I bring!

All that I have I lay before my King!

Blessing and honor and glory I bring!

To my Redeemer!

To the One Who gave up everything for me!

Chorus

I will praise You!

Praise You until there’s absolutely nothing left!

I will praise You!

I’ll praise You ’til there’s nothing left!

I’ll praise You with my dying breath

Here In Your Presence

Here In Your Presence

Just as Moses had an encounter with the burning bush - the very presence of God - I have had ‘burning bush’ moments in my life…like the moment in 1981 when He confronted me head-on with His magnificent, undeniable love which brought about such a life-changing moment when the old things I thought defined me were burned away leaving only what was truly me unscathed and fully intact in a brand new identity!

Where would I be without the presence of the Lord in my life? I would be walking around in depravity of mind. I would be walking in a false identity born of my belief in the enemy’s lies. To be honest, I would probably be dead! I cannot live an abundant life apart from the presence of God. To help explain what I mean, today we are going to be talking about the story behind my song, Here In Your Presence, from the live worship recording Here In Your Presence. I received this particular song on December 13, 2008.

I have set the LORD continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely. For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever. Psalm 16:8-11 NASB 

Where can we go from the presence of the Lord? He is everywhere we are! That tells me that I simply need to be aware that I am ALWAYS in His presence. One of the best remedies for sin…or despair…or sorrow…or wounds…or loneliness…is to be in someone else’s presence – to share our pain with another. That always lightens my load! To know that the Lord of All is with me through thick and thin lightens my load like nothing else.

Sometimes we get in such a hurry – even in our corporate worship times – that we have forgotten the importance of tarrying (waiting) in and on His presence. When we wait upon the Lord we actually begin to allow the things of the world to slough off of our souls. In His presence there is fullness of joy…there is food for our hungry soul…water for our thirsty soul…hope for our despair…comfort for our sorrow. Yet how many times have we worried more about lunch and feeding our physical body when our spiritual soul is in dire need? Far too often. This song came as I cried out to the Lord for more time in His presence.

If we never leave God’s presence, that means one of two things. Either we forget He is here or we willfully choose to ignore Him! Let us ask and allow the Holy Spirit to remind us of God’s presence with and in us…and let us not rely on our feelings to determine whether or not we are in His presence. This is where faith is of vital importance. Regardless of what we see with our physical eyes and regardless of what we feel in any given moment, let us choose to believe He is with us!

Make sure that your character is free from the love of money [or free from whatever the enemy is trying to distract you with], being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,” so that we confidently say,

“THE LORD IS MY HELPER, I WILL NOT BE AFRAID.

WHAT WILL MAN DO TO ME?”

Hebrews 13:5-6 NASB

Dennis Jernigan

I have exciting news for you today! For the past ten years, I have been writing my own daily devotions to help me with renewing my mind and to help me understand more of Who God is and what that means to my own identity. Last year, we released Daily Devotions For Kingdom Seekers, Vol I and I am so excited to be able to tell you about the release of Daily Devotions for Kingdom Seekers Vol II! The ebook is now available for $4.99 and the print version is available for $12.99 just in time for Christmas. I cannot think of a better way to bless those you love with the daily reminders of Who God is and of what that knowledge means concerning their own identity. Daily Devotions For Kingdom Seekers Vol. 2 is available at the following online vendors - Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, Kobo, and anywhere else you buy books online! Or you can Just click the link provided in the podcast notes and order your own copy today - and pick up a few as gifts for those you think might be blessed by such a gift.

I have a gift for you today simply for taking the time to read this blog - a free devotional ebook for you. You can simply go to amazon.com and type in the search bar Daily Devotions For Kingdom Seekers and you will see the Kindle version free for the taking! Please send everyone you know to get their own copy and remember to leave me a review after you have used the book for a few days.

To listen to the podcast version of this teaching along with the song, Here In Your Presence, got to https://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/here-in-your-presence-1539720511/

All Hail King Jesus

All Hail King Jesus

Cutting Through the Jungle of Lies

This week’s teaching was inspired by the story behind my song, All Hail King Jesus, from the recording Here In Your Presence. I received this particular song on November 28, 2009.


the old word, hail, means to greet with enthusiasm or as an expression of acclaim or importance. When we say ‘all hail King Jesus’ we are saying ‘not only ‘welcome and greetings’ while simultaneously proclaiming the importance we place upon the person of Jesus Christ as King and Lord of our lives. Paul the Apostle in his writings to Timothy put it this way:

I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who testified the good confession before Pontius Pilate, that you keep the commandment without stain or reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which He will bring about at the proper time—He who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone possesses immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see. To Him be honor and eternal dominion! Amen. 1 Timothy 6:13-16 NASB

As I was meditating on where the Lord would have me lead my church in worship prior to the next worship gathering I heard one phrase that kept reverberating in my heart and mind: “All hail King Jesus!” Jesus is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. When the King is present – when He enters – it is a sign of reverence and awe for one to rise in honor. It is also a sign of respect to bow the knee to the King. This song is meant to be a call to all present to revere the King…to stand or kneel in honor of His great majesty.

How I feel in any given moment is beside the point. Personally, I cannot allow the way I feel to dictate if and when I worship my King. In the world - even today - If an earthly king were to walk into a gathering of his subjects, the expectation - the proper protocol - would be that all present would rise in honor of the monarch. The further expectation would be that when greeting the king, one would bow or curtsy before him. We think nothing of standing or bowing in reverence and honor for an earthly king - regardless of our present feelings. So why do we find ourselves allowing our feelings to dictate whether or not we show reverence or honor to the King of Kings?

For me personally, I know that I am a highly emotional man with an intense melancholy personality. God designed me to feel deeply. I get that. I understand and accept that, but that design to feel deeply does not give me license to ever allow negative feelings to dictate when and how I will worship my King.

Since I recognize and acknowledge the weaknesses of my giftings, I have come to learn that such negative feelings are produced by negative thoughts. Negative thoughts - like believing the lies of the enemy concerning who or Whose I am - can be changed. If thoughts can be changed, feelings will follow suit.

I see the lies of the enemy as a jungle between my King and myself. In such jungles I take the machete of God’s Word in one hand - the Truth - and hack away at the lies until I see the King. In the other hand, I wield the machete of praise and worship, exalting Jesus as King of Kings over my life and over my feelings. When I do this - worship in spite of the way I feel while proclaiming the Truth of Who God is and who I am because of Who He is - my mind is transformed and my negative feelings follow suit!

What jungle do you need to hack your way out of right now? What lies are you believing that are affecting the way you feel? As you listen to this song, use the Truth presented to you as a weapon of warfare and worship the King in spite of the way you feel right now. He is here…and it is always appropriate protocol to stand or to bow before the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

“These [the enemies of God] will wage war against the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, because He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those who are with Him are the called and chosen and faithful.” Revelations 17:14

[Philippians 2:8-11 NASB] 8 [Jesus] Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Let us cut through the jungle of the lies of the enemy today by using the Word of God and a heart of worship and praise to transform our hearts and minds. The King is here. What will you do with that information?

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to the podcast version this teaching along with the song, simply go to https://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/all-hail-king-jesus/

To get a FREE ebook version of Daily Devotions For Kingdom Seekers, Vol. 1, go to https://www.amazon.com/Daily-Devotions-Kingdom-Seekers-Vol-ebook/dp/B078WHGXCD/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1542729912&sr=1-1&keywords=Daily+Devotions+for+Kingdom+Seekers

To order your copy of Daily Devotions For Kingdom Seekers, Vol. 2, go to https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07KPQLCJ1/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1542730479&sr=1-2&keywords=Daily+Devotions+for+Kingdom+Seekers

You Are God

You Are God

Encouraging Yourself in the Lord

Today we are going to be talking about the story behind my song, You Are God, from the recording Here In Your Presence. I received this particular song on August 6, 2008.

For You are great and do wondrous deeds;
You alone are God.
Psalm 86:10 NASB

 
"And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved."
Acts 4:12 NASB

Because of the nature of my story - leaving the homosexual lifestyle and identity for that of a heterosexual new creation in Christ - I am often referred to as a hater. Of course, nothing could be further from the truth. I happen to believe, based on the Word of God and upon my own experience, that with God nothing is impossible. My calling is to tell the world what Jesus has done for me. If we who have been redeemed do not declare what we have been redeemed from, how in the world are those trapped in the same sin going to know change is even possible? 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 puts it this way:

[1Co 6:9-11 NASB] 9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor [the] covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

Such WERE some of you! It seems God has been setting people free from their old identities for quite some time now, doesn’t it? Add this to the mix and you can understand how this song came to be born.

[Psa 107:1-2 NASB] 1 Oh give thanks to the LORD, for He is good, For His lovingkindness is everlasting. 2 Let the redeemed of the LORD say [so,] Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary.

In other words, how can I keep silent about all God has done for me?

In spite of the fact that God has set me free, I still find myself ridiculed and mocked and derided as a hate-filled person. What does that mean to me? I am note defined by what others call me or by what others think of me. Just as King David encouraged himself in the Lord when he led his men into battle only to return to their camp to find their wives and children captured by the enemy, I have learned to encourage myself in the Lord.

[1Sa 30:6 NASB] 6 Moreover David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.

Just how does one encourage or strengthen themselves in the Lord? One practical application is to remind myself of the Truth about Who God is and declare that He is int control even when the world around me is falling apart.

When all around us seems to be falling…when the world calls what is right wrong and what is wrong right…when storms assail us…when the enemy lies…when nothing makes sense…we have need of something bigger than ourselves and bigger than our circumstances. We need a Rock. We need a Defender. We need someone who is there when no one else is around. I have chosen to praise God in spite of what my earthly eyes might see. Sometimes what I see leaves me feeling fearful, but that fear is silenced whenever I remember the Rock that I stand upon does not move and is unshakable.

This song is a song of warfare and declaration. It reminds me of David’s incredulity at Goliath for the way he mocked the God of Israel…David’s faith was in God’s strength and might, not his own. When in battle it is best to remember that we are not God – but we ARE his children…and He jealously defends His own. Praise God and watch the enemy tumble and fall.

As you listen to or read the words of this song, I urge you to encourage yourself in the Lord. Speak truth into the dark places of your life and soul and you will speak life into death and you will speak light into the darkness.

You Are God

Verse

Holy and righteous in all of Your ways

You are mighty and awesome and can’t be contained

You are God! Almighty God!

Holy and righteous and totally pure

You are steadfast in power

So faithful and sure

You are God! Almighty God!


Chorus

I will humbly bow before

While proclaiming You are Lord!

You are God and You alone!

He Who sits upon the throne!

You are Lion and the Lamb

And the Rock on which I stand!

By the power of Your blood

And the measure of Your love

You are God

Verse

Mighty in power, the Champion and Lord

Like a thundering Warrior

With lightning Your sword

You are God! Almighty God!
You are Lord over heaven and Lord over earth

You are Lord of Creation and Lord of new birth

You Are God! Almighty God!

[2Co 2:14-17 NASB] 14 But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. 15 For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; 16 to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life. And who is adequate for these things? 17 For we are not like many, peddling the word of God, but as from sincerity, but as from God, we speak in Christ in the sight of God.

I urge you to encourage yourself in the Lord today by simply proclaiming Who He is to you…and to your own soul.

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to the podcast version of this teaching, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/you-are-god/

You Are God

Words & Music: Dennis Jernigan

Received on August 6, 2008

©2008 Shepherd's Heart Music, Inc.•3201 N. 74th St. West

Muskogee, OK•74401•www.dennisjernigan.com•1-800-877-0406

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You Reign Over Me

You Reign Over Me

[Mic 7:8 NASB] 8 Do not rejoice over me, O my enemy. Though I fall I will rise; Though I dwell in darkness, the LORD is a light for me. 

Even in darkness the Lord’s light shines bright. Even in times of spiritual attack and warfare God is in control. Even when death comes our God is about life. Our God is mighty. Bottom line. No argument. Satan is under our feet and we follow the name above all names.

Make no mistake. The enemy of God - the Liar - is real and is ready to pounce on us with his subtle and not-so-subtle little lies concerning the nature of our God as well as attacking us at the core of our identity.

[1Pe 5:8-9 NASB] 8 Be of sober [spirit,] be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 But resist him, firm in [your] faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.

We - even when we are oppressed - are not defeated. Just read the end of the book. We win! Do not let that truth get lost in the fray of war.

[2Co 4:7-10 NASB] 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; 8 [we are] afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.

What that tells me is that God wastes nothing. Not even our wounds. Not even our defeats. Not even our times of confusion. From God’s perspective, we see even the chaos of spiritual warfare with victory in mind. We have the choice. We can either see ourselves as victims or we can see ourselves as victors. What does Father God see when He sees us? He gives us grace to endure and sees us through the eyes of grace!

[Jas 4:6-7 NASB] 6 But He gives a greater grace. Therefore [it] says, "GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE." 7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

Simple ways I use to resist the devil:

• Worship

• Proclaiming God’s Word to my own soul

• Sharing my burdens with others

• Prayer

• Reminding myself of who and Whose I am

• Reminding myself that God reigns - over everything

• Reminding myself that God wastes nothing

[1Jo 4:1-4 NASB] 1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the [spirit] of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world. 4 You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.

God is either in control or He is not. We need to settle that issue and allow Him to reign over our lives and over our circumstances. Again, He wastes nothing!

[Psa 45:6 NASB] 6 Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; A scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom.

[Psa 47:8 NASB] 8 God reigns over the nations, God sits on His holy throne.

If you get nothing else from today’s teaching, get that: Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world! That is Christ in you - the very hope of glory! Believe it and receive it and walk like you believe it today!

Dennis Jernigan

To listen to this teaching by Dennis Jernigan, go to http://podcast.dennisjernigan.com/e/you-reign-over-me/