Kings & Queens

By David Cook

  But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

1 Peter 2:9 NASB

Sometimes the lines seem to blur between living in reality and living ones dreams.  Is it possible for the King of the Universe to give you storybook realities that exceed your dreams while you’re chasing down today, tomorrow and forever?

In the Chronicles of Narnia author C.S. Lewis presents a fantasy world were average young citizens of England with childlike faith enter into another world where they find that they are in fact, prophetic royalty that have come to play a strategic role in the fight against evil.  They relate to and eventually find themselves in a relationship with a Lion named Aslan who is a benevolent King of the realm of Narnia.

The Biblical narrative presents similar realities for followers of Messiah Yeshua who is Himself the KING of kings and LORD of lords.  The Apostle Peter spent over three years with His Majesty here on earth before Yeshua offered His life as a sacrifice for our sins.  Peter was a disciple of the Messiah who will rule the earth as the KING of kings when He returns to set up His millennial kingdom on earth.

What did Peter want believers in Messiah Yeshua to understand about their identity?

1.     A member of a chosen race.

2.     A member of a royal priesthood.

3.     A member of a holy nation.

4.     A member of God’s People.

Why did God do this?

 “so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him
who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light”   
1 Peter 2:9 NASB

Peter wanted God’s people to understand who they are.  Their real identity, not just for time on earth; but their identity during the millennial reign of King Messiah on earth and throughout all eternity.

Let’s read this scripture in 1 Peter chapter two in context with the whole chapter and discover practical Christian living counsel that Peter gives for living this new life in Christ here and now.  In the comments below I’d be interested to know any insights you see for believers in Yeshua on how to live in this present reality on earth.

1 Peter Chapter 2

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Peter+2&version=NASB

For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, 22 who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; 23 and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; 24 and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. 25 For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.   1 Peter 2:21-25 NASB

  

Honor all people, love the brotherhood, 
fear God, honor the king.
– the Apostle Peter

1 Peter 2:17 NASB

Savior & King

by David Cook

Jesus Is Our Savior

God’s beloved Son Jesus is the Savior of the world.  He left His home in heaven with His Father and came to earth to die on the cross to save us from our sins.

See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ. For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, 10 and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority; 11 and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ; 12 having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. 13 When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, 14 having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. 15 When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.

Colossians 2:8-15 NASB

Jesus is the King of Glory 

The Savior of the world is also the King of Glory.  He will return to earth, set up His kingdom and judge all people; both the living and the dead.

Christ Jesus—who will someday judge the living and the dead 
when he appears to set up his Kingdom— 
2 Timothy 4:1 TLB

I Will Never Leave You

By David Cook

 “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Yeshua the Messiah, the Son of the living God

janis_joplin

JANIS JOPLIN

Have you ever felt useless?  Have you ever wondered why you are here on earth?  Have you ever asked the question; when will I find somebody to love, who will really love me?  When will I ever know someone on a deep level and be deeply known?

Have you ever wondered if the Lord Himself would leave you all alone?

Evidently, Janis Joplin could identify with some of those same questions since she recorded the song “Work Me, Lord” written by Nick Gravenities.  Janis closed out her performance at Woodstock in 1969 with this song.

Are you pushing, trying to move forward in life but you feel like something is moving you in the wrong direction; backwards?  Like something has a hold on you, that you just can’t shake?  Have you thought about what it would be like to be a new and different you, but mistakes from your past haunt you and then just repeat what has been?

larry_norman_only_visiting_this_planet

Larry Norman wrote about this inner struggle in his song;
Walking Backward Down The Stairs“.

Being loved and loving begins by beginning a relationship with God, who is the source of love.  Knowing the true and living God and being fully known by Him is where life begins.  Making peace with God through His Son Yeshua (Jesus) is the place to begin.  Finding forgiveness of all sins and being declared righteous by God is what the free gift of salvation is about!

21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26 It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
Romans 3:21-26 ESV

Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we can confidently say,

“The Lord is my helper;
I will not fear;
what can man do to me?”

 Hebrews 13:4-6 ESV

 

He Names The Stars

White River, Ozark Mountain Sunset
Sunset in the Ozark Mountains on the White River.

By David Cook

He heals the brokenhearted
And binds up their wounds.
He counts the number of the stars;
He gives names to all of them.
Great is our Lord and abundant in strength;
 His understanding is infinite.
Psalm 147:3-5 NASB

As the sunsets each night, something spectacular happens in the heavens above.  We see the vastness of outer space and the stars hung in the night sky.  The Maker of the heavens and earth counts all the stars and He names all of them.  This same One, heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.  The Lord of hosts is the maker of the heavens and earth, His understanding is infinite. [1]

Starry Night by Alex Ruiz
“Starry Night” painting by Alex Ruiz [2]

Dark Starry Night

I gave my heart to the One who made the sky full of stars!  Today, if you hear His voice speaking to you; don’t harden your heart.  Open up your heart, and ask Jesus Christ; the maker of the heavens and the earth to be your Savior and Lord!

[1] Jesus is the Lord of hosts who is the maker of the heavens and earth, Isaiah 48:1-16, John 1:1-3, Colossians 1:13-16.

[2]  Starry Night, painting by Alex Ruiz; http://fineartamerica.com/featured/starry-night-alex-ruiz.html

Love One Another

by David Cook

“A new command I give you: Love one another.
As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples,
if you love one another.”  –Yeshua the Messiah
John 13:34-35 NIV

 Jesus is the Light Of the World

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.”
The gospel of John 8:12 NASB

Light From Above

Jesus is the “Light Of the World”, He brought light and truth to set us free!  When someone turns to Him and takes a step of faith out of the darkness into the light of Christ they find the “Light of life”!

jumping_joy

The Truth Will Make You Free

31 So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” 33 They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never yet been enslaved to anyone; how is it that You say, ‘You will become free’?”

34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. 35 The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. 36 So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed. John 8:31-36 NASB

Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life;
no one comes to the Father but through Me.”
–Yeshua the Messiah, the Son of the Living God
John 14:6 NASB

The Bible“Son of God” Movie [1]

Love God with Your All and Love Your Neighbor

Yeshua the Messiah was asked; what is the most important law that was written in the Torah by the prophet Moses?

36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”  Matthew 22:36-40

[1] “Son of God” movie, directed by Christopher Spencer.  The life story of Jesus is told from his humble birth through his teachings, crucifixion and ultimate resurrection.

The Gospel

St DC a royal in KC

by David Cook

For I am not ashamed of the gospel,
because it is the power of God that brings salvation
to everyone who believes:
–Saint Paul

Romans 1:16 NIV

Hip Hop artist Lecrae grew up without good role models while living in the hood. He grew up with a single mom, and spent time watching rap videos at his grandmother’s house searching for significance and real manhood without his Dad around.  Lecrae wrestled with insignificance, and never met his father and endured a life of abuse and neglect. He looked for acceptance and a place to belong, attempting to fill the void by hangin’ with gangsters in the neighborhood.

It wasn’t long before Lecrae was trapped in a world filled with drugs, theft, alcohol and gang activity. “I didn’t fit in anywhere. I was just a misfit of a person,” he said.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ,
 the new creation has come: 
The old has gone, the new is here!  
2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV

Little did he know that his view on life would soon be rocked, opening his eyes to the One who knew he was significant.  The One who cared enough to die for him.

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”   –Saint Paul
Romans 1:16-17 NIV

18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.    2 Corinthians 5:18-21 NIV

Don’t Worry

cropped-paradise.jpg

by David Cook

Don’t worry about anything;
instead, pray about everything;
tell God your needs,
and don’t forget to thank him for his answers.
Philippians 4:6 TLB

In art many times, less is more.  I would say this true in life as well; more or less.

Always be full of joy in the Lord; I say it again, rejoice! Let everyone see that you are unselfish and considerate in all you do. Remember that the Lord is coming soon. Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:4-7 TLB

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