Access, Angels, Belief, Bible, Confession, Death, Forgiveness, Glory, Heaven, Life, Salvation, Scripture



“‘The LORD of armies says this: “If you walk in My ways and perform My service, then you will both govern My house and be in charge of My courtyards, and I will grant you free access among these who are standing here.”’”

What does “free access” mean to you? I picture going to an amusement park and having a ticket that allows you to ride all the rides, eat all the food you want, drink all you want and having reserved parking in the parking lot. But even with that you still would not be allowed behind the scenes of these rides or in the offices of those who made all the decisions.

The LORD of armies is saying through the angel that if Joshua would “walk in My ways and perform My service” then he would have free access. But to where? He would be promised to be with the angels who were around him when he died. Eternal life, promised heaven. Who wouldn’t jump at that offer, right?


We are promised the same if… Our “if” is receiving Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. There is no other way to gain free access to glory. Jesus tells us that in John 14:6. “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father except through Me.’”

Paul says something similar in Romans 10:9. “…that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;…”

You can’t get much plainer than that. Free access comes one way – through Jesus. Let me ask that question again. Who wouldn’t jump at that offer, right?

You may be surprised. Many think coming to Jesus will cramp their lifestyle. They will have to give up too much. They don’t understand the freedom they could have in Christ. That’s where you come in. You have to tell them. You have to show them. You have to live in such a way that they come to you asking you about your freedom. Free access is available to all. Help others come to it.

I am free, Father, to live my life pleasing You. I can’t wait to see You face-to-face.

Bible, Fire, Glory, Protection, Scripture



“‘But I,’ declares the LORD, ‘will be a wall of fire to her on all sides, and I will be the glory in her midst.’”

I have never seen a huge wall of fire. The closest I have come to that is when I watched my grandmother burn off a field. She walked the edge of the field and started small fires every six or eight feet. I remember those flames moving forward and eventually connecting until there was one continuous wall of fire to watch. But that fire burned out.

What we have today in verse 5 is the Lord saying He would be the fire that would encircle Jerusalem. He would be a wall of deterrence to anyone who tried to attack. And His fire does not burn out. Not only would He be the fire, but He also would send His glory in their midst. He would dwell with them.


This reminds me of the pillar of fire that the Lord sent to be with the people of Israel when they left Egypt. Exodus 13:21 says, “And the LORD was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, so that they might travel by day and by night.” He led them by His fire.

God will still lead you by His fire. That fire may not look the same as it did to the Israelites. He puts a fire within us, which is the symbol of the Holy Spirit. He will burn within you and will never be extinguished. I don’t care what you do, if you are child of God, there is nothing you can do to put out that flame. You may not let it shine as it should, but it’s still there.

We are to let the flame of God light our way and point others to Jesus. If we are shining our light brightly, we will lead others to the light. People want to see. They may not even realize they are walking in darkness until you shine the light of God’s love on them. Will you be the flame that points others to Him?

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.

Angels, Battles, Belief, Bible, Defense, Fighting, Glory, Protection, Scripture



“And I said, ‘What are these coming to do?’ And he said, ‘These are the horns that have scattered Judah so that no one lifts up his head; but these craftsmen have come to frighten them, to throw down the horns of the nations who have lifted up their horns against the land of Judah in order to scatter it.’”

Have you ever watched a good fight? I remember the old Muhammed Ali and Joe Frazier fights. I particularly remember all of us boys talking about it for days before it happened. The night of the fight we would often all get together at one our houses to watch these two men duke it out for the Heavy Weight Championship. Blow after blow fell until one of them was crowned the champion.

The horns and the craftsmen are going to “throw down” according to the angel who is talking to Zechariah here in verse 21 of chapter 1. A cosmic battle is taking place for Israel. Zechariah is watching it happen before it happens. We, of course, know the result of this battle. Israel was restored and is still among us today.


Oh, the battles that are going on right now in heaven on your behalf! You can’t see them, but you can be reassured that they are happening. How do I know? Because the Word tells us so. Deuteronomy 20:4 says, “for the LORD your God is the One who is going with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.”

How about the story of Elijah and his servant in 2 Kings 6? “15 Now when the attendant of the man of God had risen early and gone out, behold, an army with horses and chariots was circling the city. And his servant said to him, ‘This is hopeless, my master! What are we to do?’ 16 And he said, ‘Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are greater than those who are with them.’ 17 Then Elisha prayed and said, ‘LORD, please, open his eyes so that he may see.’ And the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” 

Unseen to you right now are hordes of angels in heaven and our Lord sitting on His throne. At His command they soar to earth to battle our adversaries. You don’t believe this? Just ask the Lord. He defends His own. If you are one of His children, He will come to your aid. He will “throw down” those horns in your life.

Father, I trust You to protect me and keep me.

Abiding, Bible, Glorify, Glory, Holy Spirit, Indwelling, Scripture, Temple



“‘I will shake all the nations; and they will come with the wealth of all nations, and I will fill this house with glory,’ says the LORD of armies.”

One of my fondest memories as a child was going to my Grandma Carter’s farm for Thanksgiving or Christmas. She lived about 10 miles from our home in the city (I guess you can call my hometown a city, lol), but it seemed like a different world. She had acres to explore. But the distinct memory is of her house filled to overflowing with my kin. Uncles, aunts and cousins were everywhere. There was literally no room to spare.

God tells the people that He will “fill this house with glory.” Now, when God does something, He doesn’t do it half-way. He meant He was going to fill that place full. Every nook and cranny would be filled with His Spirit. He would make it His place. Can you imagine the pride the people must have felt to hear that God was going to indwell the building they were repairing for Him. He was saying, “Well done, my good and faithful servants.”


Has God filled your heart with His glory? So many believers are looking for another “filling.” Listen, beloved, when Christ sends His Holy Spirit to you at salvation, you are filled. Listen to the words of John in 1 John 2:27. “But you have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you,…” And when the Holy Spirit comes in, He indwells every nook and cranny.

So, why isn’t God’s glory shining forth in your life or my life? Because we let our old self get in the way. The Spirit is there, ready to burst forth, but we keep it shielded from exhibition by our own choices. Let me give you an example. Every morning when I wake up (and I get up earl), it is dark in our bedroom. I don’t want to wake my dear bride, so I try to walk in the darkness with little to no light. I usually have my cell phone in my hand, so I touch the screen for it to light up a little. I hold that close to my chest so only a little light illuminates the darkness to keep me from stumbling. Too much light and I risk disturbing my wife’s sleep. Too little and I might bump into something and hurt myself or even fall.

Hmmm! Are you shielding the light of the Spirit by cloaking it with darkness in your life? Be warned! If you let the Spirit in you shine forth, it may disturb those around you who are “sleeping.” But when you let it shine, your path is brighter. You can see where you are walking. The Spirit is there. Your house is full. Let Him shine!

Hide it (Him) under a bushel? No! I’m gonna let it (Him) shine!

Bible, Commands, Glory, God's Will, Hearing, Listening, Messages, Scripture, Witnessing



 “‘Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people, saying,’”

There’s a game I used to play a lot with children. You line the kids up and then give the first one in the line a message to pass down the line. The message should be clear but perhaps a little challenging. Let the children pass it down the line very quietly so only the person they are talking to can hear it. The only rule is they can only tell it once to the person they are passing it to. At the end of the line the last child will say what they heard out loud. Normally, the last message is nothing like the one you told the first child. The game is called Rumors.

Haggai is not playing a game with the Israelites. God isn’t whispering in his ear and asking him to pass it along to see how wrong they can get it. No! God speaks clearly. His words are precise. He is giving Haggai a message to deliver to His people. Why? Well, we will see that in the coming days. Come back to this blog site and watch how God’s message can bring peace and comfort.


When God speaks, we must share. His message to us is never meant just for us. Now, it may be a very personal message. But God wants His words known to the world. You may ask How do I know that it is God speaking to me? Simple. Does the message glorify Him? Does it agree with Scripture. You can be assured that any message you get from the devil will do neither.

What is the message God has given you? What! You haven’t heard from Him? Are you listening? You can’t hear God unless you have your ears tuned in to hear His voice. God normally isn’t going to shout it to you in claps of thunder. His message will come to you as you study His Word or meditate on a passage. Perhaps in the quietness of your prayer time He will speak.

Once you hear the message, though, tell everyone. They may think you are a little “off,” but that is okay. Tell them how God loves them. Tell them how they can experience that love. Tell them they have a Savior in Christ. You see, God is still proclaiming that message. We have work that needs to be done. Let’s go.

Go tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere.

Abiding, Belief, Bible, Glory, God's Will, Holy Spirit, Praise, Scripture, Worship



“So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of all the remnant of the people; and they came and worked on the house of the LORD of armies, their God,”

There has been a stirring of the Spirit in the past month at some colleges and universities, which started at Asbury College in Kentucky. What began as a regular chapel service grew into a movement of God with literally thousands from around the country coming to experience this non-stop service. Some people have questioned what was happening there. That is not our right. God will reveal whether this was real or not. The stirring of the Spirit is not for us to question.

Finally, the spirit of the people is stirred by the Lord here in Haggai 1:14. Notice that this began with the leaders, Zerubbabel and Joshua. Then the people were stirred. And this stirring of their spirit resulted in putting their feet into action. They began to work on the temple, God’s house, the LORD of armies. They didn’t just sit around and enjoy the stirring. They obeyed God’s call to action. Glory!


I truly believe the reason God’s work has not been accomplished sooner is because our leaders have not been receptive of God’s stirring. The event that is described in today’s verse is also mentioned in Ezra 1:5. “Then the heads of fathers’ households of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites rose up, everyone whose spirit God had stirred to go up to rebuild the house of the LORD which is in Jerusalem.”

It is important to mention that no one should try to accomplish what they think God wants until He stirs their heart to do so. But our leaders have to be ready and able to hear God’s voice. This is only through prayer and time in His Word. So much ministry is done without the first thought of what God wants. Good can get in the way of what is best if we are not careful.

I know in my own life I could stay very busy doing “stuff” for God. There is no end to the lists I could make to keep my calendar full. I have to ask the Lord each day what He would have me do. It is not about what I want to do. It is all about what He would have me do. How about you? Check out your motives for ministry. Make sure you have heard God and let Him stir your spirit with His Spirit.

Please stir my heart
Take me back to the fire
And bring to me recollections of joy
And renew my first desire


Abiding, Attitude, Bible, Exalting, Glory, Joy, Praise, Rejoicing, Scripture



“‘Shout for joy, daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, Israel! Rejoice and triumph with all your heart, daughter of Jerusalem!’”

I have been to Africa about 17 times, if my counting is correct. I love to hear my brothers and sisters sing and watch them dance before the Lord. To say they get a little excited is an understatement. The first time I heard the high pitched sound the women make with their tongues (called a tongue-wag), it shocked me. But now I just wish I could do it. It comes during a time of high praise for our God. It really is moving to me.

Here in Zephaniah 3:14 we see the Lord calling on the people to shout – for joy, in triumph. They are called to rejoice and triumph will all their hearts. God calls them the daughter of Zion, Israel and the daughter of Jerusalem. All three of those names point to a relationship with the Father. Did you know that “Israel” means contended with God and can be also said to mean triumphant with God? All reasons to shout for joy.


How can you shout for joy today? I don’t mean to go outside and scream and scare your neighbors. I don’t mean jumping up and yelling “Jesus” at the top of your longs the next time you are church. I am talking about living your life in a manner that it shouts for joy. How do you do that?

I love 1 and 2 Peter. I quote them a lot because Peter gives us so many applicable words from the Lord. 2 Peter 1:3-4 is one of those passages. “3 for His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. 4 Through these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world on account of lust.”

If those aren’t words to shout about, I don’t know what is. Let your life shout for joy today. Let your words, even in the quiet moments, shout for joy. Let your face shout for joy. In other words, let your whole being shout for joy. Fill your heart with joy by celebrating who you are in Christ.

I will shout and sing for joy to You, my great and mighty King.

Bible, Glory, Light, Majesty, Praise, Radiance, Scripture, Testimony, Witnessing



His radiance is like the sunlight; He has rays flashing from His hand, and the hiding of His might is there.”

I love to see rays of sunlight when they pierce through the clouds. The sunbeams radiate and brighten a dark day. They seem to come from nowhere, yet they contain such power. I have witnessed them bursting forth on a frosty morning, and as those beams of light hit the frost covered ground, the frost just melted away.

Habakkuk is still in his prayer describing God in all His glory. Now he turns to His light which seems to burst forth from His hands. Don’t miss that. God’s hands are the symbol of His power and might. When God lifts His hands, things happen. There is power in those hands. His brightness burst forth from them.


John 1:9 tell us, “This was the true Light that, coming into the world, enlightens every person.” That light Habakkuk describes in his prayer was the same light that existed in Christ. He is the light of the world. John tells us He came to enlighten every person. That includes you and me.

So, if His light exists in us through the Holy Spirit, shouldn’t we let it shine? Shouldn’t we take off the covering that is hiding His light. Perhaps by doing so we may lead someone else to that indescribable light that exists only in Jesus. Those who are lost in darkness can find that light.

Most of us know that children’s song, This Little Light of Mine. The second verse is my favorite.

     Hide it under a bushel, no! I’m gonna let it shine!

     Hide it under a bushel, no! I’m gonna let it shine!

     Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine!

Will you let your light shine today. Let the radiance of the King of kings shine through you.

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine!

Beauty, Bible, Glory, Goodness, Honor, Majesty, Scripture, Splendor



“God comes from Teman, and the Holy One from Mount Paran. Selah. His splendor covers the heavens, and the earth is full of His praise.”

Splendor! What does that word mean? We don’t use it a lot today. At least, I don’t, but I can think of a few scenes that could be described that way. The splendor of a sunset or sunrise. The splendor of a beautiful garden. The splendor of majestic mountain peaks. Just think of something you could describe that way.

The word used by Habakkuk is hod, which can mean beauty, comeliness, glorious, glory, goodly, honor, majesty. Don’t forget he is describing God here. He says this splendor covers the heavens. In other words, it covers all we see. It’s always there. We just don’t see it sometimes because we are not looking for it. God’s splendor doesn’t hide from us.


As believers in Christ, God’s splendor is manifested in and through us by the Holy Spirit. The lost world should be able to see God’s splendor in us. Why don’t they? Why don’t we let it burst forth like the heavens? Why don’t we allow God’s splendor to pierce the darkness that surrounds us?

I want to encourage you today to shine, to be splendorous! That may be a new word, lol. But I like the sound of it. Be splendorous. Reflect the beauty, comeliness, gloriousness, goodliness, honor and majesty of God. Let others ask you what is wrong with you. They may be amazed at what is coming out of you.

Our choir is singing our second Christmas program today. It is our prayer that His splendor pours forth from us. We want those watching and listening to experience His splendor this Christmas season. If we are the only Christmas program they get to attend, we want them to leave encouraged in their walk with Christ. Join us today and let the splendor of Christ shine forth.

The splendor of the king, robed in majesty, let all the earth rejoice!

Bible, Boasting, Conceit, Glory, Scripture, Thanksgiving



“‘For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.’”

When you read “the glory of the LORD,” what do you think about? I picture the baby Jesus lying in a manger surrounded by the shepherds. I envision Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration. I can almost see the empty tomb.

When the Chaldeans are judged by God, everyone will see His glory. There will no mistaken what happened. This was God’s action against a pagan nation for thinking they deserved any glory. They had simply been used by the Lord as His instrument for a season. There was no reason to gloat.


We have the privilege to reflect God’s glory to the world. When He blesses us, we need to point heavenward and give Him all the praise. When He chooses to heal us when we are sick, all the glory goes to Him.

And when things are going bad and you can’t see a way out, we still give Him the glory. God deserves our glory in good times and bad. There is not a day that goes by that we cannot find at least one reason to reflect His glory.

Of course, we are tempted to take credit, like the Chaldeans. Our flesh loves being praised. Don’t fall into that trap! Keep your focus on Jesus. He deserves all our praise every day. Will you give Him praise today? If you have selfishly taken credit for His work in your life, repent of that now. Give Him all glory.

Lord, help me keep my focus on You and not my flesh. You are worthy of all my praise.