Message for November 29, 2015 from Pastor Jerry

“ Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil….” Psalm 23:4

“Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the Lord delivers him out of them all.” Psalm 34:19

    There is a popular southern gospel song that includes the words “the God of the mountain is still God in the valley”.  I heard the song sung at the community Thanksgiving Service Tuesday night.  It ministered to me as I thought about the valleys I have traveled through in the last few years.

    I knew that in about three of them I was in the valley of the shadow of death.  I was face to face with the Grim Reaper and he was telling me to give up for I was going to die.  At least two times I was fighting a spiritual battle as my physical body was grasping for life.  The devil was telling me that I could not trust the word of God.  He agreed that it would work for others, but not for me and I should just give up and die.

    Some people preach that if you truly believe you will not experience all the things the devil uses to defeat man.  You won’t get sick, you will always have a great abundance of wealth, and everything will always work right.  If this doesn’t happen in your life you don’t have enough faith or there is sin you must get rid of.

    If we do not experience affliction, why does the word of God say we do?  The verse above says “many are the afflictions of the righteous”.  It doesn’t say the ones without faith or the ones who sin.  It says “the righteous”.  We can agree that faithless, sinful, rebellious, selfish, and haughty people open the doors to attacks of the enemy.

    Why would the devil attack righteous people?  It is to steal their joy, kill their hope, and destroy their life.  No one but Jesus ever did everything right.  Therefore, He gave us His rights and privileges to rule in this world.  Our enemies will flee before us but they will first confront us to test us.

    I have been confronted and tested many times.  I might not be perfect in action or word but I am righteous but that doesn’t exempt me from battle.  Have hope, look up, trust God, and keep on keeping on.  The victory is won.

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