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GOD PROMISES TO KEEP US GOING

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being
renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that
far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is
seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:16-18)

The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will
quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17)

We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life.
Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on
ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he
will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us. (2 Corinthians
1:8b-10)

"I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness. I will build you
up again and you will be rebuilt, O Virgin Israel. Again you will take up your tambourines and go
out to dance with the joyful." (Jeremiah 31:3-4)

"I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters," says the Lord Almighty. (2
Corinthians 6:18)

Here is your God! See, the Sovereign LORD comes with power, and his arm rules for him. See, his
reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him. He tends his flock like a shepherd: He
gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have
young. (Isaiah 40:10-11)

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends
of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives
strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and
young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will
soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah
40:28-31)

You have been a refuge for the poor, a refuge for the needy in his distress, a shelter from the storm
and a shade from the heat. (Isaiah 25:4)

But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."
Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on
me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions,
in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears from all faces; he will remove the disgrace of his
people from all the earth. The LORD has spoken. (Isaiah 25:8)

Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange
were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may
be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. (1 Peter 4:12-13)

Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive
the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. (James 1:12)

The LORD watches over you-- the LORD is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm
you by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD will keep you from all harm -- he will watch over
your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore. (Psalm
121:5-8)

Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Selah. Our God is a God
who saves; from the Sovereign LORD comes escape from death. (Psalm 68:19-20)

Though You have made me see troubles, many and bitter, You will restore my life again. (Psalm
71:20)

Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of
God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to
sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we

are--yet without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may
receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:14-16)

Well, then, are God's laws and God's promises against each other? Of course not! If we could be
saved by His laws, then God would not have had to give us a different way to get out of the grip of
sin--for the Scriptures insist we are all its prisoners. The only way out is through faith in Jesus
Christ; the way of escape is open to all who believe Him. (Galatians 3:21-22, The Living Bible)

The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to
all; he has compassion on all he has made. (Psalm 145:8-9)

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. (Psalm 147:3)

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not
from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;
persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our
body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. (2 Corinthians
4:7-10)

The LORD is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. (Psalm 145:13b)

At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held
against them. But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength. (2 Timothy 4:16-17a)

I love the LORD, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to
me, I will call on him as long as I live. (Psalm 116:1-2)

"Because he loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges
my name. He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver
him and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation." (Psalm 91:1416)

Do not hold against us the sins of the fathers; may your mercy come quickly to meet us, for we are
in desperate need. (Psalm 79:8)

For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of
sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father." The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are
God's children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs -- heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if
indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. (Romans 8:15-17)

The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace. (Romans
8:6)

You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. (John 8:32)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving,
present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard
your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)

We have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16b)

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy
1:7, King James Version)

Since God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for
us all -- how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? (Romans 8:31-32)

Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus who died--more than that, who was raised to life--is at the
right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?
Shall trouble or hardship or persecution of famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is
written: "For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered."
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced
that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any
powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from
the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:34-39)

And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a
little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power
for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 5:10-11)

Jesus said, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will
have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." (John 16:33)

Jesus said, "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life,
and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given
them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. I and the Father are
one." (John 10:27-30)

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord
Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.
And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings,
because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character,
hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the
Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. (Romans 5:1-5)

When my heart was grieved and my spirit embittered, I was senseless and ignorant; I was a brute
beast before you. Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with
your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. (Psalm 73:21-24)

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (Psalm
73:26)

I am in pain and distress; may your salvation, O God, protect me. (Psalm 69:29)

Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Selah. Our God is a God
who saves; from the Sovereign LORD comes escape from death. (Psalm 68:19-20)

GOD PROMISES TO COMFORT US

The LORD your God is with you. He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you. He will quiet you with
His love, He will rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17)

The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in Him. (Nahum 1:7)

Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall. (Psalm 55:22)

May your unfailing love be my comfort, according to your promise to your servant. Let your compassion come
to me that I may live, for your [Word] is my delight. (Psalm 119:76-77)

O our God, the great, mighty and awesome God, who keeps His covenant of love... (Nehemiah 9:32)

Shout for joy, O heavens; rejoice, O earth; burst into song, O mountains! For the LORD comforts His people
and will have compassion on His afflicted ones. (Isaiah 49:13)

I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow. (Jeremiah 31:13)

As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job's perseverance and have
seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy. (James 5:11)

He reached down from on high and took hold of me; He drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my
powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me. They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but
the LORD was my support. (Psalm 18:16-18)

Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7)

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,
who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves
have received from God. (2 Corinthians 1:3,4)

The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; He has
compassion on all He has made. (Psalm 145:8-9)

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain...
(Revelation 21:4)

But You are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love... (Nehemiah
9:17)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your
requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your
minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. (Matthew 5:4)

Be still and know that I am God... (Psalm 46:10)

One thing God has spoken, two things have I heard: that You, O God, are strong, and that You, O Lord, are
loving... (Psalm 62:11-12)

I, even I, am He who comforts you... (Isaiah 51:12)

The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. (Psalm 103:8)

Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for His promises never fail. They are new every
morning; great is Your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)

The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous and His ears are attentive to their cry. (Psalm 34:15)

But God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us... (2 Corinthians 7:6)

Though [your mother] may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of My hands.
(Isaiah 49:15-16)

Praise be to the LORD, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. (Psalm 68:19)
"Because he loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges My name.
He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him."
(Psalm 91:14-15)

The LORD is faithful to all His promises and loving toward all He has made. The LORD upholds all those who
fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. (Psalm 145:13-14)

Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good. His love endures forever. (Psalm 136:1)

GOD IS WITH US

"Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." (Hebrews 13:5)
"I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from
all your idols." (Ezekiel 36:25)
...A righteous man will be remembered forever. He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting
in the LORD. His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes. (Psalm
112:6-8)

Commit your way to the LORD; trust in Him and He will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like
the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun. (Psalm 37:5-6)
Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear. (Isaiah 65:24)
Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of His purpose very clear to the heirs of what was
promised, He confirmed it with an oath... it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the
hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure...
(Hebrews 6:17-19)

"Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as
snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool." (Isaiah 1:18)
Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD, is my strength and my song;
He has become my salvation. (Isaiah 12:2)
The LORD Almighty has sworn, "Surely, as I have planned, so it will be, and as I have purposed, so it will
stand." (Isaiah 14:24)
In that day they will say, "Surely this is our God; we trusted in Him, and He saved us. This is the LORD, we
trusted in Him; let us rejoice and be glad in His salvation." (Isaiah 25:9)
You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You. Trust in the LORD
forever, for the LORD, the LORD is the Rock eternal. (Isaiah 26:3-4)
This is what the Sovereign LORD says: "See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone for a
sure foundation; the one who trusts will never be dismayed." (Isaiah 28:16)

He tends His flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries them close to His heart; He
gently leads those that have young. (Isaiah 40:11)
But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run
and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:31)
"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I
will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
(Isaiah 41:10)

I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the
darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not
forsake them. (Isaiah 42:16)
"Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the
waters, I will be with you...For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior." (Isaiah 43:1-3)
"I, even I, am the LORD, and apart from me there is no savior." (Isaiah 43:11)
"I, even I am He who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more." (Isaiah
43:25)

"I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is no God." (Isaiah 44:6)
And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved. (Joel 2:32)
"Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours."
(Mark 11:24)

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. (Romans 5:1-2)
But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
What if some did not have faith? Will their lack of faith nullify God's faithfulness? Not at all! (Romans 3:3-4)
But where sin increased, grace increased all the more. (Romans 5:20)
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
(Romans 8:1)

For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And
by Him we cry, "Abba, Father." The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. (Romans
8:15-16)

The Spirit helps us in our weakness. (Romans 8:26)


And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according
to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)

In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
(Romans 8:37)

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor
any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love
of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)
If you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead,
you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you
confess and are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)
As the Scripture says, "Anyone who trusts in Him will never be put to shame." (Romans 10:11)
The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. (Romans 16:20)
...God does not judge by external appearance... (Galatians 2:6)
A man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ...
(Galatians 2:16)

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by
faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)
But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us
peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)
Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law. (Galatians 3:25)
But when the time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under
law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our
hearts, the Spirit who calls out, "Abba. Father." So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son,
God has made you also an heir. (Galatians 4:4-7)
But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law. (Galatians 5:18)
...what counts is a new creation. (Galatians 6:15)
This is what the LORD says-- He who made you, who formed you in the womb, and who will help you... (Isaiah
44:2)

For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight. In love He
predestined us to be adopted as His sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will-- to the
praise of His glorious grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves. In Him we have redemption
through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace that He lavished on us
with all wisdom and understanding. (Ephesians 1:4-8)
And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having
believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our
inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession -- to the praise of His glory. (Ephesians 1:1314)

But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were
dead in transgressions -- it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us
with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages He might show the
incomparable riches of His grace, expressed in His kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have
been saved, through faith -- and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God -- not by works, so that no one can
boast.
(Ephesians 2:4-9)

For He Himself is our peace. (Ephesians 2:14)


For through Him we have access to the Father by one Spirit. (Ephesians 2:18)
Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of
God's household. (Ephesians 2:19)
For you were once in darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. (Ephesians 5:8)
"I the LORD do not change..." (Malachi 3:6)
You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. (1 Thessalonians
5:5)

For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians
5:9)

The one who calls you is faithful and He will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:24)
But whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm. (Proverbs 1:33)
...from the beginning God chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in
the truth. (2 Thessalonians 2:13)
But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.
(2 Thessalonians 3:3)

Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.
(2 Thessalonians 3:16)

He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God, who
has called you into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful. (1 Corinthians 1:8-9)
For the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man's
strength. (1 Corinthians 1:25)
...But we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16)
You are of Christ, and Christ is of God. (1 Corinthians 3:23)
And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name
of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:11)

By His power God raised the Lord from the dead, and He will raise us also.
(1 Corinthians 6:14)

So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall! No temptation has seized you except what
is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when
you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. (1 Corinthians 10:12-13)
For God is not a God of disorder but of peace. (1 Corinthians 14:33)
If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men. But Christ has indeed been
raised from the dead. (1 Corinthians 15:19-20)
...in Christ all will be made alive. (1 Corinthians 15:22)
Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the
Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. (1 Corinthians 15:58)
We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God
has freely given us. (1 Corinthians 2:12)
Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of
Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:6)
For it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose. (Philippians 2:13)
But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the
power that enables Him to bring everything under His control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will
be like His glorious body. (Philippians 3:20-21)
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your
requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your
minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)
I can do everything through Him who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:13)
And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)
Have no fear of sudden disaster or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked, for the LORD will be your confidence
and will keep your foot from being snared.
(Proverbs 3:25-26)

...Joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the
kingdom of light. For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the
Son He loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (Colossians 1:11-14)
But now He has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in His sight,
without blemish and free from accusation. (Colossians 1:22)
[you are] God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved... (Colossians 3:12)

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
(1 John 1:9)

I write to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of His name. (1 John 2:12)
The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever. (1 John 2:17)
...no lie comes from the truth. (1 John 2:21)
This is what He promised us -- even eternal life. (1 John 2:25)
How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what
we are! (1 John 3:1)
...this is how we know that He lives in us: We know it by the Spirit He gave us.
(1 John 3:24)

You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the
one who is in the world. (1 John 4:4)
This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live
through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His son as an atoning sacrifice
for our sins. (1 John 4:9-10)
There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who
fears is not made perfect in love. (1 John 4:18)
Everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.
Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God. (1 John 5:4-5)
And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life;
he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. (1 John 5:11-12)
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.
And if we know that He hears us -- whatever we ask -- we know that we have what we asked of Him. (1 John
5:14-15)

We know also that the Son of God has come and have given us understanding, so that we may know Him who is
true. And we are in Him who is true -- even in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. (1 John
5:20)

Jesus said, "I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of My hand. My
Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. (John
10:28-29)

The Word of the LORD stands forever. (Isaiah 40:8)


You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the
praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now

you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
(1 Peter 2:9-10)

...But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. (1 Peter 2:20)
If you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name. (1 Peter 4:16)
And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while,
will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To Him be the power for ever and ever.
Amen. (1 Peter 5:10-11)
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who
called us by His own glory and goodness. Through these He has given us very great and precious promises, so
that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil
desires. (2 Peter 1:3-4)
The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting
anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)
...We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in
our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who
raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and He will deliver us. On Him we have set our
hope that He will continue to deliver us. (2 Corinthians 8-10)
For no matter how many promises God has made, they are all "Yes" in Christ.
(2 Corinthians 1:20)

Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set His seal of ownership on us,
and put His Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. (2 Corinthians 1:21_22)
...it is by faith you stand firm. (2 Corinthians 1:24)
For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the
one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life... (2 Corinthians 2:15-16)
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
(2 Corinthians 3:17)

And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into His likeness with everincreasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:18)
For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of
the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6)
God...has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.
(2 Corinthians 5:5)

What we are is plain to God. (2 Corinthians 5:11)


If we are out of our mind, it is for the sake of God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. (2 Corinthians 5:13)

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! (2 Corinthians 5:17)
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 5:21)

"I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters," says the Lord Almighty. (2 Corinthians 6:18)
...this body of ours had no rest, but we were harassed at every turn -- conflicts on the outside, fears within. But
God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us...
(2 Corinthians 7:5-6)

Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. (2
Corinthians 7:10)

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge
Him, and He will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
...But You remain the same, and Your years will never end. (Hebrews 1:12)
Because He himself suffered when He was tempted, He is able to help those who are being tempted. (Hebrews
2:18)

Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him
to whom we must give account. (Hebrews 4:13)
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has
been tempted in every way, just as we are -- yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with
confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:15-16)
Therefore He is able to save completely those who come to God through Him, because He always lives to
intercede for them. (Hebrews 7:25)
Because by one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who are being made holy. (Hebrews 10:14)
Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
(Hebrews 12:3)

Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and
living way opened for us through the curtain, that is His body, and since we have a great priest over the house of
God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to
cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold unswervingly to
the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:19-23)
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)
GOD LISTENS TO US
Throughout the Psalms, David and the other writers poured out their hearts to God in prayer,
expressing honest feelings of anguish and desperate pleas for protection. They grieved painful
confessions of sin, confidently expressed their hope and trust in God, and joyfully lifted praises to

Him. Many times we find ourselves in situations, especially in the many ups and downs and
crises of recovery, where we don't know how to pray or express our feelings to God. Our fears of
Him sometimes keep us from saying what we really feel. It is our hope that these prayers will
help you get to know God better -- to see him through the psalmist's eyes; to genuinely cry out
to Him, freely expressing your anguish and fears and uncertainties; to know Him as the God who
loves you just as you are.

I will exalt you, O LORD, for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. O
LORD my God, I called to you for help and you healed me. (Psalm 30:1-2)
But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in
times of trouble. O my Strength, I sing praise to you; you, O God, are my fortress, my loving God. (Psalm
59:16-17)
Many, O LORD my God, are the wonders you have done. The things you planned for us no one can recount to
you; were I to speak and tell of them they would be too many to declare. (Psalm 40:5)
I will praise you with the harp for your faithfulness, O my God; I will sing praise to you with the lyre, O Holy
One of Israel. My lips will shout for joy when I sing praise to you-- I, whom you have redeemed. My tongue
will tell of your righteous acts all day long, for those who wanted to harm me have been put to shame and
confusion. (Psalm 71:22-24)
My heart is steadfast, O God; I will sing and make music with all my soul. Awake, harp and lyre! I will awaken
the dawn. I will praise you, O LORD, among the nations; I will sing of you among the peoples. For great is your
love, higher than the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens, and
let your glory be over all the earth. (Psalm 108:1-5)
Not to us, O LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness. (Psalm
115:1)
Praise be to the LORD God, the God of Israel, who alone does marvelous deeds. Praise be to his glorious name
forever; may the whole earth be filled with his glory. Amen and Amen. (Psalm 72:18-19)
I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations; I will sing of you among the peoples. For great is your love,
reaching to the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let your
glory be over all the earth. (Psalm 57:9-11)
I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and
extol your name for ever and ever. Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can
fathom. (Psalm 145:1-3)
I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; before the "gods" I will sing your praise. I will bow down toward
your holy temple and will praise your name for your love and your faithfulness, for you have exalted above all
things your name and your word. When I called, you answered me; you made me bold and stouthearted. (Psalm
138:1-3)
Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I love, and in your
name I will lift up my hands. (Psalm 63:3-4)
Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me! (Psalm 66:20)

Back to Contents

PRAYERS OF CONFESSION
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my
transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. (Psalm 51:1-2)
Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word. Fulfill your promise to
your servant so that you may be [reverenced] . (Psalm 119:36-37)
Do not withhold your mercy from me, O LORD; may your love and your truth always protect me. For troubles
without number surround me; my sins have overtaken me, and I cannot see. They are more than the hairs of my
head, and my heart fails within me. (Psalm 40:11-12)
Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD; O Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.
If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness; therefore
you are [reverenced]. (Psalm 130:1-4)
Help us, O God our Savior, for the glory of your name; deliver us and forgive our sins for your name's sake.
(Psalm 79:9)
Back to Contents

PRAYERS FOR HELP AND PROTECTION


Save us and help us with your right hand, that those you love my be delivered. (Psalm 60:5)
O LORD, you will keep us safe and protect us from [our enemies] forever. (Psalm 12:7)
Hear my cry, O God, listen to my prayer. From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint;
lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe. I long to
dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings. (Psalm 61:1-4)
Hear, O LORD, and answer me, for I am poor and needy. (Psalm 86:1)
Save me, O LORD, from lying lips and deceitful tongues. (Psalm 120:2)
Have mercy on us, O LORD, have mercy on us, for we have endured much contempt. We have endured much
ridicule from the proud, much contempt from the arrogant. (Psalm 123:3-4)
In you, O LORD, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame; deliver me in your righteousness. Turn
your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me. Since you are my
rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me. Free me from the trap that is set for me, for
you are my refuge. Into your hands I commit my spirit; redeem me, O LORD, the God of truth. (Psalm 31:1-5)
O my Strength, I watch for you; you, O God, are my fortress, my loving God... (Psalm 59:9-10)

Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow
of your wings until the disaster has passed. (Psalm 57:1)
Be merciful to me, LORD, for I am faint; O LORD, heal me, for my bones are in agony. My soul is in anguish.
How long, O LORD, how long? Turn, O LORD, and deliver me; save me because of your unfailing love.
(Psalm 6:2-4)
Surely you desire truth in the inner parts; you teach me wisdom in the inmost place. (Psalm 51:6)
My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death assail me. Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has
overwhelmed me. I said, "Oh that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and stay in the desert. I would
hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm." But you, O God, will bring down the wicked into
the pit of corruption; bloodthirsty and deceitful men will not live out half their days. But as for me, I trust in
you. (Psalm 55:4-8, 23)
When I am afraid, I will trust in you... Record my lament; list my tears on your scroll-- are they not in your
record? Then my enemies will turn back when I call for help. By this I will know that God is for me... For you
have delivered me from death and my feet from stumbling that I may walk before you in the light of life. (Psalm
56:3, 8-9, 13)
Arise, Lord! Lift up your hand, O God. Do not forget the helpless... You, O God, do see trouble and grief; you
consider it to take it in hand. The victim commits himself to you; you are the helper of the fatherless... You hear,
O Lord, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, defending the fatherless and
the oppressed, in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more. (Psalm 10:12, 14, 17-18)
I am in pain and distress; may your salvation, O God, protect me. (Psalm 69:29)
Save us and help us with your right hand, that those you love may be delivered. (Psalm 108:6)
Arise, O LORD! Deliver me, O my God! Strike all my enemies on the jaw; break the teeth of the wicked.
(Psalm 3:7)
Save me, O God, for the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in the miry depths, where there is no foothold.
I have come into the deep waters; the floods engulf me. I am worn out calling for help; my throat is parched.
My eyes fail, looking for my God. Those who hate me without reason outnumber the hairs of my head; many
are my enemies without cause, those who seek to destroy me. I am forced to restore what I did not s#863A63.
(Psalm 69:1-4)
Rescue me, O LORD, from evil men; protect me from men of violence, who devise evil plans in their hearts and
stir up war every day. They make their tongues as sharp as a serpent's; the poison of vipers is on their lips. Keep
me, O LORD, from the hands of the wicked; protect me from men of violence who plan to trip my feet. (Psalm
140:1-4)
How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I
wrestle with my thoughts and every day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me?
Look on me and answer, O LORD my God. Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death; my enemy will say,
"I have overcome him," and my foes will rejoice when I fall. But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices
in your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, for he has been good to me. (Psalm 13)
Keep me safe, O God, for in you I take refuge. (Psalm 16:1)

Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. The troubles of my heart have multiplied; free
me from my anguish. Look upon my affliction and my distress and take away all my sins. See how my enemies
have increased and how fiercely they hate me! Guard my life and rescue me; let me not be put to shame, for I
take refuge in you. May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope is in you. (Psalm 25:16-21)
Be merciful to me, O LORD, for I am in distress; my eyes grow weak with sorrow, my soul and my body with
grief. My life is consumed by anguish and my years by groaning; my strength fails because of my affliction, and
my bones grow week. Because of all my enemies, I am the utter contempt of my neighbors; I am a dread to my
friends-- those who see me on the street flee from me. I am forgotten by them as though I were dead; I have
become like broken pottery. For I hear the slander of many; there is terror on every side; they conspire against
me and lot to take my life. But I trust in you, O LORD; I say, "You are my God." My times are in your hands;
deliver me from my enemies and from those who pursue me. Let your face shine on your servant; save me in
your unfailing love. (Psalm 31:9-16)
Be not far from me, O God; come quickly, O my God, to help me. (Psalm 71:12)
Summon your power, O God; show us your strength, O God, as you have done before. (Psalm 68:28)
Set a guard over my mouth, O LORD; keep watch over the door of my lips. Let not my heart be drawn to what
is evil, to take part in wicked deeds with men who are evildoers; let me not eat of their delicacies. (Psalm 141:34)
O LORD, hear my prayer, listen to my cry for mercy; in your faithfulness and righteousness come to my relief.
(Psalm 143:1)
Help me, O LORD my God; save me in accordance with your love. Let them know that it is your hand, that
you, O LORD, have done it. (Psalm 109:26-27)
Answer me, O LORD, out of the goodness of your love; in your great mercy turn to me. Do not hide your face
from your servant; answer me quickly, for I am in trouble. Come near and rescue me; redeem me because of my
foes. (Psalm 69:16-18)
O LORD, I say to you, "You are my God." Hear, O LORD, my cry for mercy. O Sovereign LORD, my strong
deliverer, who shields my head in the day of battle-- do not grant the wicked their desires, O LORD; do not let
their plans succeed, or they will become proud. Let the heads of those who surround me be covered with the
trouble their lips have caused. (Psalm 140:6-9)
Hear my prayer, O LORD; let my cry for help come to you. Do not hide your face from me when I am in
distress. Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly. (Psalm 102:1-2)
Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need; rescue me from those who pursue me, for they are too strong for
me. Set me free from my prison, that I may praise your name. Then the righteous will gather about me because
of your goodness to me. (Psalm 142:6-7)
Part your heavens, O LORD, and come down; touch the mountains so that they smoke. Send forth lightning and
scatter the enemies; shoot your arrows and rout them. Reach down your hand from on high; deliver me and
rescue me from the mighty waters... (Psalm 144:5-7)
For your name's sake, O LORD, preserve my life; in your righteousness, bring me out of trouble. In your
unfailing love, silence my enemies; destroy all my foes, for I am your servant. (Psalm 143:11-12)

In my anguish I cried to the LORD, and he answered by setting me free. The LORD is with me; I will not be
afraid. What can man do to me? The LORD is with me; he is my helper. I will look in triumph on my enemies.
(Psalm 118:5-7)
Back to Contents

PRAYERS OF HOPE AND TRUST


You give me your shield of victory, and your right hand sustains me; you stoop down to make me great. You
broaden the path beneath me so that my ankles do not turn. (Psalm 18:35-36)
To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God. Do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies
triumph over me. No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame, but they will be put to shame who are
treacherous without excuse. Show me your ways O LORD, teach me your paths, guide me in your truth and
teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long. Remember, O LORD, your great
mercy and love; for they are from of old. Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways;
according to your love remember me, for you are good, O LORD. (Psalm 25:1-7)
My heart says of you, "Seek his face!" Your face, LORD, I will seek. (Psalm 27:8)
But as for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. (Psalm 71:14)
But you are a shield around me, O LORD; you bestow glory on me and lift up my head. (Psalm 3:3)
But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that
those who love your name may rejoice in you. For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous; you surround them
with your favor as with a shield. (Psalm 5:11-12)
Remember your word to your servant, for you have given me hope. My comfort in my suffering is this: Your
promise preserves my life. (Psalm 119:49-50)
I call on you, O God, for you will answer me; give ear to me and hear my prayer. Show the wonder of your
great love, you who save by your right hand those who take refuge in you from their foes. Keep me as the apple
of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings... And I-- in righteousness I will see your face; when I awake,
I will be satisfied with seeing your likeness. (Psalm 17:6-8, 15)
May your unfailing love come to me, O LORD, your salvation according to your promise; then I will answer
the one who taunts me, for I trust in your word. (Psalm 119:41-42)
On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. Because you are my help, I sing in
the shadow of your wings. My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me. (Psalm 63:3-8)
But my eyes are fixed on you, O Sovereign LORD; in you I take refuge -- do not give me over to death. Keep
me from the snares they have laid for me, from the traps set by evildoers. Let the wicked fall into their own
nets, while I pass by in safety. (Psalm 141:8-10)
Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life; you stretch out your hand against the anger of my
foes, with your right hand you save me. (Psalm 138:7)

Send forth your light and your truth, let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place
where you dwell. (Psalm 43:3)
Guard my life, for I am devoted to you. You are my God; save your servant who trusts in you. (Psalm 86:2)
Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for you and be glad all our days. Make us
glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, for as many years as we have seen trouble. (Psalm 90:14-15)
When my heart was grieved and my spirit embittered, I was senseless and ignorant; I was a brute beast before
you. Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward
you will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My
flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (Psalm 73:21-26)
But you, O Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
Turn to me and have mercy on me... (Psalm 86:15-16)
You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word. (Psalm 119:114)
I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all
your works and consider all your mighty deeds. Your ways, O God, are holy. What god is so great as our God?
You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the people. (Psalm 77:11-14)
You are awesome, O God, in your sanctuary; the God of Israel gives power and strength to his people. Praise be
to God! (Psalm 68:35)
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should
go, for to you I lift up my soul. Rescue me from my enemies, O LORD, for I hide myself in you. Teach me to
do your will, for you are my God; may your good Spirit lead me on level ground. (Psalm 143:8-10)
O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my
thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a
word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD. You hem me in -- behind and before; you have laid
your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, to lofty for me to attain. Where can I go from
your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in
the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your
hand will guide me, and your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me and the
light become night around me," even darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for
darkness is as light to you. For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I
praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your words are wonderful, I know that full well. My
frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths
of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before
one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to
count them they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you. If only you would slay
the wicked, O God! Away from me, you bloodthirsty men! They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries
misuse your name. Do not I hate those who hate you, O LORD, and abhor those who rise up against you? I have
nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies. Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and
know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (Psalm
139
GOD EQUIPS US

O our God . . . we are powerless . . . nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are on Thee. (2
Chronicles 20:12)

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a Spirit of power. (2 Timothy 1:7)

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not
from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;
persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We will always carry around in our
body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. (2 Corinthians 4:710)

In Christ Jesus and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.
(Ephesians 3:12)

The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is majestic.
(Psalm 29:4)

The LORD is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation.


(Exodus 15:2)

I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that
are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. For such people are not
serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds
of naive people. Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I am full of joy over you; but I want
you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil. The God of peace will soon
crush Satan under your feet. (Romans 16:17-20)

If we are out of our mind, it is for the sake of God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. (2
Corinthians 5:13)

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk, but of power. (1 Corinthians 4:20)

. . . But we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16)

For the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than
man's strength. (1 Corinthians 1:25)

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened
again by a yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1)

I pray out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner
being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and
established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and
high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge -- that you may
be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. [He] is able to do immeasurably more than all we
ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us. (Ephesians 3:16-20)

Since the children [are human], He too shared in their humanity so that by His death He might
destroy him who holds the power of death -- that is, the devil -- and free those who all their lives
were held in slavery by their fear of death. (Hebrews 3:14-15)

You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the One who is in you is
greater than the one who is in the world. (1 John 4:4)

With God we will gain the victory, and He will trample down our enemies.
(Psalm 60:12)

For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with
are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and
we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The
prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. (James 5:16)

The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of His being, sustaining all
things by His powerful word. (Hebrews 1:3)

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 5:21)

Jesus said, " . . . Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."
(Matthew 28:20)

And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. (Acts 2:21)

This is what the LORD says: "Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of
his strength or the rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast about this: that he
understands and knows me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness
on earth, for in these I delight," declares the LORD. (Jeremiah 9:23-24)

Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins.
(James 4:17)

It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. (2 Samuel 22:33)

But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:31)

See, the Sovereign LORD comes with power, and His arm rules for Him.
(Isaiah 40:10)

To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was
given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the
Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is

made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses; so that
Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in
hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:710)

Let those who love the Lord hate evil, for He guards the lives of His faithful ones and delivers them
from the hand of the wicked. (Psalm 97:10)

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all
unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Come near to God and
He will come near to you. (James 4:7-8)

Jesus said to him, "Away from me, Satan! For it is written: 'Worship the LORD your God and serve
Him only.'" Then the devil left Him and angels came and attended Him. (Matthew 4:10)

Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take
your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against
the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual
forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day
of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of
righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of
peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the
flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is
the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and request. With
this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. (Ephesians 6:10-18)

In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
(Romans 8:37)

You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for [us]. (Romans 5:6)

Am I trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still
trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ. (Galatians 1:10)

So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall! No temptation has seized you
except what is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what
you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up
under it. (1 Corinthians 10:12-13)

...If we could be saved by His laws, then God would not have had to give us a different way to get
out of the grip of sin--for the Scriptures insist we are all its prisoners. The only way out is through
faith in Jesus Christ; the way of escape is open to all who believe Him. (Galatians 3:21-22 The Living
Bible)

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being
saved it is the power of God. (1 Corinthians 1:18)

For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world,
even our faith. (1 John 5:4)

Because the LORD revealed their plot to me, I knew it, for at that time He showed me what they
were doing. I had been like a gentle lamb led to the slaughter; I did not realize that they had plotted
against me, saying, "Let us destroy the tree and its fruit; let us cut him off from the land of the
living, that his name be remembered no more." But, O LORD Almighty, You who judge righteously
and test the heart and mind, let me see your vengeance upon them, for to You I have committed my
cause. (Jeremiah 11:18-20)

"I will make you a wall to this people, a fortified wall of bronze; they will fight against you but will
not overcome you, for I am with you to rescue and save you," declared the LORD. (Jeremiah 15:20)

He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning.
The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work. (1 John 3:8)

Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for
everything in heaven and earth is Yours. Yours, O LORD, is the kingdom. (1 Chronicles 29:11)

Great is our Lord and mighty in power; His understanding has no limit.
(Psalm 147:5)

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and
help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
(Isaiah 41:10)

I can do everything through Him who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:13)

...Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged because of the King of Assyria and
the vast army with him, for there is a greater power with us than with him... with us is the LORD
our God to help us fight our battles.
(2 Chronicles 32:7-8)

I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to
which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably
great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of His mighty strength, which He
exerted in Christ Jesus when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the
heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be
given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. (Ephesians 1:18-21)

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love. (1
Corinthians 16:13,14)

Do not give the devil a foothold. (Ephesians 4:27)

If you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him
from the dead you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is
with your mouth that you confess and are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)

God does not judge by external appearance. (Galatians 2:6)

But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear
brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord,
because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. (1 Corinthians 15:57-58)

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the
fruit of the light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth). And find out what pleases the
Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them... be very
careful, then, how you live -- not as unwise but as wise. (Ephesians 4:8-15)

. . . and I do not want you to be participants with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and
the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord's table and the table of demons. (1
Corinthians 10:20-21)

The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him and I am helped... (Psalm 28:7)

O LORD, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in time of distress, to You the nations will come
from the ends of the earth and say, "Our fathers possessed nothing but false gods, worthless idols
that did them no good. Do men make their own gods? Yes, but they are not gods!" Therefore I will
teach them -- this time I will teach them my power and might. Then they will know that my name is
the LORD. (Jeremiah 16:19-21)

But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in Him. He will be like a tree
planted by the water that sends out its root by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its
leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit. (Jeremiah
17:7-8)

Heal me, O LORD, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for You are the one I praise.
(Jeremiah 17:14)

If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he
should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus
Christ. To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 4:11)

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear . . . The
LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.
(Psalm 46:1, 2, 11)

The Name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe. (Proverbs 18:10)

Let my persecutors be put to shame, but keep me from shame; let them be terrified, but keep me
from terror. Bring on them the day of disaster; destroy them with double destruction. (Jeremiah
17:18)

Yes, this is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel says: "Do not let the prophets and diviners
among you deceive you. Do not listen to the dreams you encourage them to have. They are
prophesying lies to you in My name. I have not sent them," declares the LORD. This is what the
LORD says: "When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill My
gracious promise to bring you back to this place. For I know the plans I have for you," declares the
LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you
will call upon Me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me
when you seek Me with all your heart.
(Jeremiah 29:8-13)

For I am not ashamed of the Gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone
who believed. (Romans 1:16)

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being
saved it is the power of God. (1 Corinthians 1:18)

My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my
salvation; He is my fortress, I will never be shaken. (Psalm 62:1-2)

Then the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah: "I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is
anything too hard for Me?" (Jeremiah 32:26-27)

Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.
(Jeremiah 33:3)

He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus
Christ. God, who has called you into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful. (1
Corinthians 1:8-9)

To Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before His glorious presence
without fault and with great joy-- to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and
authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen. (Jude 24)
GOD GIVES US HOPE

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm
you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11)

. . .there is a future for the person of peace. (Psalm 37:37)

There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off. (Proverbs 23:18)

Jesus said, "Behold, I am coming soon!" (Revelation 22:12)

Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will
yet praise him, my Savior and my God. (Psalm 42:5)

But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new
birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an
inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade -- kept in heaven for you, who through faith are
shielded by God's power. (1 Peter 1:3-5)

As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job's
perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion
and mercy. (James 5:11)

The LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love. (Psalm 147:11)

Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel, for which
I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God's word is not chained.
Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is
in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory. Here is a trustworthy saying: If we died with Him, we will also
live with Him; if we endure, we will also reign with Him. (2 Timothy 2:8-12)

Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him. He alone is my rock and my
salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is
my mighty rock, my refuge. Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for
God is our refuge. (Psalm 62:5-8)

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything
that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked
out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set
before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of
God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary
and lose heart. (Hebrews 12:1-3)

But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate,
and the hope of salvation as a helmet. For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive
salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep, we
may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact
you are doing. (1 Thessalonians 5:8-11)

When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (Colossians 3:4)

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:12)

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and
the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. (Romans 15:4)

Do not be arrogant nor put your hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but put your hope in God,
who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. (1 Timothy 6:17)

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say "No" to
ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present
age, while we wait for the blessed hope -- the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus
Christ. (Titus 2:11-13)

God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have
helped his people and continue to help them. (Hebrews 6:10)

Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But
we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who
has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure. (1 John 3:2-3)

They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in
white stood beside them. "Men of Galilee," they said, "why do you stand here looking into the sky?
This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you
have seen him go into heaven." (Acts 1:10-11)

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being
renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that
far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is
seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:16-18)

Because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely
those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. (Hebrews 7:2425)

Blessed is the person who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will
receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him. (James 1:12)

By faith Moses . . . persevered because he saw him who is invisible. (Hebrews 11:24, 27)

All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised;
they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens
and strangers on earth . . . they were longing for a better country -- a heavenly one. Therefore God
is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. (Hebrews 11:13-16)

But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ,
who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly
bodies so that they will be like his glorious body. (Philippians 3:20-21)

. . . we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings,
because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character,
hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the
Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. (Romans 5:2-5)

Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord's coming. (James 5:7)

So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that
when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little
while, "He who is coming will come and not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith."
(Hebrews 10:25-28)

Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed -- in a flash, in the
twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised
imperishable, and we will be changed... Thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our

Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give
yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in
vain. (1 Corinthians 15:51-52, 57-58)

And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a
little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power
for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 5:10-11)

The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. (Romans 16:20)

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not
give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who
belong to the family of believers. (Galatians 6:9-10)

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the
body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow
with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been
called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)

Jesus said, "Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." (Matthew 28:20)

He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus
Christ. God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful. (1
Corinthians 1:8-9)

Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him . . . (Revelation 1:7)

For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the
archangel, and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we
who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord
in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these
words. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18)
GOD PROTECTS US

There is no one like the God of Jeshurun [Israel], who rides on the heavens to help you and on the clouds in His
majesty. The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. He will drive out your
enemies before you, saying "Destroy him!" (Deuteronomy 33:26-27)

...He has delivered us and He will continue to deliver us... (2 Corinthians 1:10)

"Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor Me." (Psalm 50:15)

The LORD has kept the promise He made... (1 Kings 8:20)

O LORD, God of Israel, there is no God like you in heaven above or on earth below -- you who keep your
covenant of love with your servants who continue wholeheartedly in your way." (1 Kings 8:23)

The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting
anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)

"I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who
has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand." (John 10:28-29)

Let us hold unswerving to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:23)

Not one of all the LORD's good promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled. (Joshua 21:45)

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a
living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish,
spoil or fade -- kept in heaven for you. (2 Peter 1:3-4)

Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; He is the faithful God, keeping His covenant of love to a
thousand generations of those who love Him and keep His commands. (Deuteronomy 7:9)

For the word of the LORD is right and true; He is faithful in all He does. (Psalm 33:4)

...The LORD is faithful to all His promises and loving toward all He has made. (Psalm 145:13)

The LORD remains faithful forever. (Psalm 146:6)

No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be
tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can
stand up under it. (1 Corinthians 10:13)

The One who calls you is faithful, and He will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:24)

If we are faithless, He will remain faithful, for He cannot disown Himself. (2 Timothy 2:13)

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:23)

So then, those who suffer according to God's will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and
continue to do good. (1 Peter 4:19)

Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of
life that God has promised to those who love Him. (James 1:12)

His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who
called us by His own glory and goodness. Through these HE has given us His very great and precious
promises... (2 Peter 1:3-4)

And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. (1 John 5:11)

The Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" Whoever is thirsty, let him come;
and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life. (Revelation 22:17)

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)

...God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." (Hebrews 13:5)

For He Himself is our peace... (Ephesians 2:14)

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's
grace that He lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. (Ephesians 1:7-8)

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
(1 John 1:9)

For great is His love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD. (Psalm
117:2)

Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every
morning; great is Your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)

What if some did not have faith? Will their lack of faith nullify God's faithfulness? Not at all! (Romans 3:3-4)

Everyone who believes in Him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only
Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:15-16)

"I tell you the truth, whoever hears My word and believes Him who sent Me has eternal life and will not be
condemned; He has crossed over from death to life." (John 5:24)

"I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who
has given them to Me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of My Father's hand." (John 10:28-29)

We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is
true. And we are in Him who is true -- even in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. (1 John
5:20)

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.
And if we know that He hears us -- whatever we ask -- we know that we have what we asked of Him. (1 John
5:14-15)

...And this is how we know that He lives in us: We know it by the Spirit He gave us. (1 John 3:24)

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what
we are! (1 John 3:1)

My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks
to the Father in our defense -- Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not
only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world. (1 John 2:1-2)

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will
come near to you. (James 4:7-8)

Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and
to inherit the kingdom He promised those who love Him? (James 2:5)

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of
your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete,
not lacking anything. (James 1:2-4)

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be
given to him. (James 1:5)

Because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore He is able to save completely those who
come to God through Him, because He always lives to intercede for them. (Hebrews 7:24-25)

God is not unjust; He will not forget your work and the love you have shown Him as you have helped His
people and continue to help them. (Hebrews 6:10)

Whoever believes in Him is not condemned... (John 3:18)

Whoever believed in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath
remains on him. (John 3:36)

I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting life. (John 6:47)

"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."
(John 10:10)

...the Scripture cannot be broken. (John 10:35)

Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies; and
whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?" (John 11:25-26)

Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (John
14:6)

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In My Father's house are many rooms; if it
were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place
for you, I will come back and take you to be with Me that you also may be where I am." (John 14:1-3)

In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither
death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor
depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus
our Lord. (Romans 8:37-39)

If you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead,
you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you
confess and are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)

...it is impossible for God to lie... (Hebrews 6:18)

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has
been tempted in every way, just as we are -- yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with
confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:15-16)

The One who calls you is faithful and He will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:24)

...your life is now hidden with Christ in God. (Colossians 3:3)

And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)

...the God of peace will be with you. (Philippians 4:9)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your
requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your
minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)
GOD TREASURES US

One of the most important things we can do in our recovery is to embrace our new identity and see ourselves
through Jesus' eyes . . . i.e., who you and I are "in Christ." Below are listed (with supporting Scripture) just a
few of the many TRUTHS contained in the Bible concerning our secure position in Christ Jesus. The facts are
there . . . all we need to do is believe them!!

The Word of God Says in Jesus Christ...


I am faithful (Ephesians 1:1)
I am God's child (John 1:12)
I have been justified (Romans 5:1)
I am Christ's friend (John 15:15)
I belong to God (1 Corinthians 6:20)
I am a member of Christ's Body (1 Corinthians 12:27)
I am assured all things work together for good (Romans 8:28)
I have been established, anointed and sealed by God (2 Corinthians 1:21-22)
I am confident that God will perfect the work He has begun in me (Philippians 1:6)
I am a citizen of heaven (Philippians 3:20)
I am hidden with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3)
I have not been given a spirit of fear, but of power, love and self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7)
I am born of God and the evil one cannot touch me (1 John 5:18)
I am blessed in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing (Ephesians 1:3)
I am chosen before the creation of the world (Ephesians 1:4, 11)
I am holy and blameless (Ephesians 1:4)
I am adopted as his child (Ephesians 1:5)
I am given God's glorious grace lavishly and without restriction (Ephesians 1:5,8)
I am in Him (Ephesians 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:30)
I have redemption (Ephesians 1:8)

I am forgiven (Ephesians 1:8; Colossians 1:14)


I have purpose (Ephesians 1:9 & 3:11)
I have hope (Ephesians 1:12)
I am included (Ephesians 1:13)
I am sealed with the promised Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13)
I am a saint (Ephesians 1:18)
I am salt and light of the earth (Matfthew 5:13-14)
I have been chosen and God desires me to bear fruit (John 15:1,5)
I am a personal witness of Jesus Christ (Acts 1:8)
I am God's coworker (2 Corinthians 6:1)
I am a minister of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:17-20)
I am alive with Christ (Ephesians 2:5)
I am raised up with Christ (Ephesians 2:6; Colossians 2:12)
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 2:6)
I have been shown the incomparable riches of God's grace (Ephesians 2:7)
God has expressed His kindness to me (Ephesians 2:7)
I am God's workmanship (Ephesians 2:10)
I have been brought near to God through Christ's blood (Ephesians 2:13)
I have peace (Ephesians 2:14)
I have access to the Father (Ephesians 2:18)
I am a member of God's household (Ephesians 2:19)
I am secure (Ephesians 2:20)
I am a holy temple (Ephesians 2:21; 1 Corinthians 6:19)

I am a dwelling for the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 2:22)


I share in the promise of Christ Jesus (Ephesians 3:6)
God's power works through me (Ephesians 3:7)
I can approach God with freedom and confidence (Ephesians 3:12)
I know there is a purpose for my sufferings (Ephesians 3:13)
I can grasp how wide, long, high and deep Christ's love is (Ephesians 3:18)
I am completed by God (Ephesians 3:19)
I can bring glory to God (Ephesians 3:21)
I have been called (Ephesians 4:1; 2 Timothy 1:9)
I can be humble, gentle, patient and lovingly tolerant of others (Ephesians 4:2)
I can mature spiritually (Ephesians 4:15)
I can be certain of God's truths and the lifestyle which He has called me to (Ephesians 4:17)
I can have a new attitude and a new lifestyle (Ephesians 4:21-32)
I can be kind and compassionate to others (Ephesians 4:32)
I can forgive others (Ephesians 4:32)
I am a light to others, and can exhibit goodness, righteousness and truth (Ephesians 5:8-9)
I can understand what God's will is (Ephesians 5:17)
I can give thanks for everything (Ephesians 5:20)
I don't have to always have my own agenda (Ephesians 5:21)
I can honor God through marriage (Ephesians 5:22-33)
I can parent my children with composure (Ephesians 6:4)
I can be strong (Ephesians 6:10)
I have God's power (Ephesians 6:10)

I can stand firm in the day of evil (Ephesians 6:13)


I am dead to sin (Romans 1:12)
I am not alone (Hebrews 13:5)
I am growing (Colossians 2:7)
I am His disciple (John 13:15)
I am prayed for by Jesus Christ (John 17:20-23)
I am united with other believers (John 17:20-23)
I am not in want (Philippians 4:19)
I possess the mind of Christ (I Corinthians 2:16)
I am promised eternal life (John 6:47)
I am promised a full life (John 10:10)
I am victorious (I John 5:4)
My heart and mind is protected with God's peace (Philippians 4:7)
I am chosen and dearly loved (Colossians 3:12)
I am blameless (I Corinthians 1:8)
I am set free (Romans 8:2; John 8:32)
I am crucified with Christ (Galatians 2:20)
I am a light in the world (Matthew 5:14)
I am more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37)
I am the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21)
I am safe (I John 5:18)
I am part of God's kingdom (Revelation 1:6)
I am healed from sin (I Peter 2:24)

I am no longer condemned (Romans 8:1, 2)


I am not helpless (Philippians 4:13)
I am overcoming (I John 4:4)
I am persevering (Philippians 3:14)
I am protected (John 10:28)
I am born again (I Peter 1:23)
I am a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17)
I am delivered (Colossians 1:13)
I am redeemed from the curse of the Law (Galatians 3:13)
I am qualified to share in His inheritance (Colossians 1:12)
I am victorious (1 Corinthians 15:57)

The Great Race

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May
26
2015

Run in such a way as to get the prize 1 Corinthians 9:24


The month of June brings many sure signs of summer: the sweet smell of cut grass, soft breezes, picnics,
fireflies, thunderstormsand runners. This unique breed of humanity, forced to run circles in cramped indoor
quarters during the North American winter, emerges with the first hint of spring and spends the summer dashing
through neighborhoods and parks.
I have nothing against runners. Some of my best friends are addicted runners. Though I have never seen a
runner smiling, apparently there is something fulfilling about it. I even tried it once, waiting for that surge of
ecstasy that my friends told me I would experience, only to find that the ecstasy came when I stopped running!

So, whatever you think about running, its important to note that the Bible often speaks of living the Christian
life as if it we were running a race. Following Jesus is clearly more than a leisurely stroll in the park! And the
issue is not whether you will run the race. When you became His follower, you were put in the race. The
question is not will you run, but how will you run?
So, here are three keys to running well.
First, stay in shape! I like Pauls perspective in 1 Corinthians 9:24: Do you not know that in a race all the
runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. In other words, you need to be
in it to win, and, like any race, winning requires discipline. As spiritual runners, we must discipline ourselves in
the exercise and dietary habits of prayer and reading Gods Word. Drinking at the fountain of prayer and
digesting the food of Gods Word gives us strength and motivation to run and win.
Secondly, obey the rules! Like all races, running to win means staying in the boundaries. Paul committed
himself to living his life by Gods rules. He did not want to be disqualified for the prize (1 Corinthians 9:27).
As good runners, we embrace the rules and gladly submit to them.
Thirdly, run light! As Hebrews 12:1 instructs us, we are to lay aside every hindering weight and the sin that so
easily besets us. What is it that distracts you and what is the sin that slows you down? Take them off and run
light!
And finally, a couple more tips. Hebrews 12:1 also tells us to be willing to persevere. Our race is more than a
few laps around the trackits a long-distance marathon. And lets face it, this marathon can be
stressful. Sometimes its the wind of life blowing against usor mud kicked in our face from the runner in front
of us. But whatever the case, runners that win never give up!
And keep your eyes on the finish line. Jesus is there! When you run for the honor and glory of His name, He
reaches out with the victors crown and says, Well done, good and faithful servant!
In my book, thats worth running for!
YOUR JOURNEY

Read 1 Corinthians 9:24-27. Would you say that you are running aimlessly, or are you
competing for the crown that will last forever?

Read Hebrews 12:1-3. What things hinder and entangle you, and how do you intend to
throw them off? What does Paul say to do so that you will not grow weary and lose
heart?

In Pauls parting words to Timothy in 2 Timothy 4:7-8, he says that he is not the only one
who will be awarded by the Lord. How does that encourage you to keep running for the
prize?

Categories: Attitudes, Basics Of Faith, Character, Christian life, Christlikeness, Eternity, Future
Prophecy, Obedience, Perserverence, Personal Crisis, Power For Living, Relating To God,
Relationships

Hebrews 12:2
Verse Concepts

fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross,
despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Galatians 2:2
Verse Concepts

It was because of a revelation that I went up; and I submitted to them the gospel which I preach among the
Gentiles, but I did so in private to those who were of reputation, for fear that I might be running, or had run, in
vain.
Galatians 5:7
Verse Concepts

You were running well; who hindered you from obeying the truth?
Philippians 2:16
Verse Concepts

holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I will have reason to glory because I did not run in vain
nor toil in vain.
Philippians 3:14
Verse Concepts

I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Hebrews 12:1
Verse Concepts

Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance
and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
2 Timothy 4:7
Verse Concepts

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith;
2 Timothy 4:8
Verse Concepts

in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award
to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.
1 Corinthians 9:24-27
Verse Concepts

Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that
you may win. Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things They then do it to

receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in
such a way, as not beating the air; read more.
- See more at: http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/The-Christian-Race#sthash.bqBdl65v.dpuf

FILM SYNOPSIS
Faith in Christ is a pursuita fighta race. Its a journey laden with difficulty, but at the finish line awaits an
imperishable reward that is given to those who persevereChrist Himself

STUDY
Prayerfully read Hebrews 11:1-3, Hebrews 12:1-2, 1 Corinthians 9:24-25, and 2 Timothy 4:7. Sometimes
running the race of faith can be difficult. Consider how you are running the race and fighting the good fight of
faith. Are you running to obtain the prize? Ask God to reveal to you, through the Holy Spirit, the true motives of
your heart.

PRAY
Fighting a good fight and keeping the faith is impossible without an ongoing relationship with Jesus Christ. If
you know Christ, take time to thank Him for evidences of His grace in your life. Joyfully repent if you have put
your hope into your works instead of Gods ultimate work, through Jesus life, death, and resurrection. If you
dont know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, reach out to a follower of Christ to further explore faith
together, or visit a Gospel-centered church in your area.

SHARE
Proudly proclaim the magnificent love and grace of Jesus Christ by sharing this film with your
friends, family, and coworkers online, in your living room, or at church.

Suggested Hashtags: #Jesus #God #RuntheRace #KeepingtheFaith #GoodFight #TheWord #Bible #Repentance
Philippians 3:14
Parallel Verses
New International Version
I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ
Jesus.
New Living Translation
I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through
Christ Jesus, is calling us.
English Standard Version
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
New American Standard Bible
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

King James Bible


I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Holman Christian Standard Bible
I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God's heavenly call in Christ Jesus.
International Standard Version
I keep pursuing the goal to win the prize of God's heavenly call in the Messiah Jesus.
NET Bible
with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And I run toward the goal to take the victory of the calling of God from on high in Yeshua The
Messiah.
GOD'S WORD Translation
I run straight toward the goal to win the prize that God's heavenly call offers in Christ Jesus.
Jubilee Bible 2000
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
King James 2000 Bible
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
American King James Version
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
American Standard Version
I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Douay-Rheims Bible
I press towards the mark, to the prize of the supernal vocation of God in Christ Jesus.
Darby Bible Translation
I pursue, [looking] towards [the] goal, for the prize of the calling on high of God in Christ Jesus.
English Revised Version
I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Webster's Bible Translation
I press towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Weymouth New Testament
with my eyes fixed on the goal I push on to secure the prize of God's heavenward call in Christ
Jesus.
World English Bible
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Young's Literal Translation

to the mark I pursue for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary
3:12-21 This simple dependence and earnestness of soul, were not mentioned as if the apostle
had gained the prize, or were already made perfect in the Saviour's likeness. He forgot the things
which were behind, so as not to be content with past labours or present measures of grace. He
reached forth, stretched himself forward towards his point; expressions showing great concern to
become more and more like unto Christ. He who runs a race, must never stop short of the end,
but press forward as fast as he can; so those who have heaven in their view, must still press
forward to it, in holy desires and hopes, and constant endeavours. Eternal life is the gift of God,
but it is in Christ Jesus; through his hand it must come to us, as it is procured for us by him.
There is no getting to heaven as our home, but by Christ as our Way. True believers, in seeking
this assurance, as well as to glorify him, will seek more nearly to resemble his sufferings and
death, by dying to sin, and by crucifying the flesh with its affections and lusts. In these things
there is a great difference among real Christians, but all know something of them. Believers
make Christ all in all, and set their hearts upon another world. If they differ from one another,
and are not of the same judgment in lesser matters, yet they must not judge one another; while
they all meet now in Christ, and hope to meet shortly in heaven. Let them join in all the great
things in which they are agreed, and wait for further light as to lesser things wherein they differ.
The enemies of the cross of Christ mind nothing but their sensual appetites. Sin is the sinner's
shame, especially when gloried in. The way of those who mind earthly things, may seem
pleasant, but death and hell are at the end of it. If we choose their way, we shall share their end.
The life of a Christian is in heaven, where his Head and his home are, and where he hopes to be
shortly; he sets his affections upon things above; and where his heart is, there will his
conversation be. There is glory kept for the bodies of the saints, in which they will appear at the
resurrection. Then the body will be made glorious; not only raised again to life, but raised to
great advantage. Observe the power by which this change will be wrought. May we be always
prepared for the coming of our Judge; looking to have our vile bodies changed by his Almighty
power, and applying to him daily to new-create our souls unto holiness; to deliver us from our
enemies, and to employ our bodies and souls as instruments of righteousness in his service.
Pulpit Commentary
Verse 14. - I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus; rather,
with the best manuscripts, unto the prize. The first preposition, "towards," expresses the aim; the
second, "unto," the end of the race. The high calling; the upward, heavenward calling. God is
calling us all upward, heavenward, by the voice of the Lord Jesus, who is the Word of God. Comp.
Hebrews 2:1, "Partakers of the heavenly calling." The words, "in Christ Jesus," are to be taken
with "the high calling." It is God who calls: he calls us in the person of Christ, by the voice of
Christ, "Come unto me." "It was his will that thou shouldst run the race below; he gives the crown
above. Seest thou not that even here they crown the most honored of the athletes, not on the
racecourse below, but the king calls them up, and crowns them there" (Chrysostom).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
I press toward the mark,.... The allusion is to the white line, or mark, which the runners in the
Olympic games made up to, and to which he that came first received the prize; and by which the
apostle intends the Lord Jesus Christ, who is "the scope", or "mark", of all the thoughts,
purposes, and counsels of God, to which they all aim, and in which they all centre; and of the
covenant of grace of which he is the sum and substance, the Mediator, surety, and messenger, in

whom are all the blessings and promises of it; and of the Scriptures of truth, the writings of the
Old and New Testament, which all testify of him, and agree in him; and of both law and Gospel,
he is the end of the law, and the substance of the Gospel; and of all the graces of the Spirit, in
the hearts of his people, faith looks at him, hope is concerned with him, and love has him for its
object; and of all the duties believers are concerned in, they all point at him, they are done in his
name and strength, through faith in him, and from a principle of love to him, and with a view to
his glory; and so he is of their thoughts, affections, and desires: and to this mark they press, or
"run", as the Syriac version renders it; they look to Jesus, while they are running their Christian
race; they keep him in their view, and follow after him, because he is their forerunner, Hebrews
6:20, and the Captain of their salvation, Hebrews 2:10; they set him before them as their guide
to direct them, according to whom they steer their course, that so they may not lose their way,
nor move out of it, to the right hand or the left; and from whom they take great encouragement
to go on, and press through the difficulties they do; and besides, they know that there is no
coming at the prize, but through the mark, for there is salvation in no other, Acts 4:12; and that
whoever comes up to the mark, or believes in Christ, shall enjoy the prize of eternal life, which is
next mentioned:
for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus: by which is meant, the incorruptible crown;
the crown of life, righteousness, and glory, that fadeth not away, James 1:12, styled "the prize of
the calling of God"; because it is what God in the effectual calling calls his people to, even to a
kingdom and glory, and to eternal glory and happiness; of which they have a sight, though but a
glimmering view of it, and are blessed with hope in it; in which they rejoice, and see their right
unto it, in the righteousness of Christ, and have a meetness for it: this is named "the high calling
of God", because God is on high, who calls them to it, in allusion to the judge in the Olympic
games, who was placed in an exalted situation, near the mark, with the crown in his hand, which
he gave to him that came first; and because the grace by which the saints are called is from
above, as every good and perfect gift is, James 1:17; and because the prize they are called unto
consists of things above, where Jesus is, and is the hope laid up in heaven, Colossians 1:5, and
the inheritance reserved there, 1 Peter 1:4; and expresses the great honour and dignity of called
ones, who are called to a crown and kingdom, are raised from the dunghill, to sit among princes,
and to inherit the throne of glory, and are made kings and priests unto God: and may also
denote, that the calling to such high honour is from above, and not below; and is owing to the
special grace and favour of God, and not to any merits of men; nor is the prize to which they are
called, of him that willeth and runneth, but of God's grace and mercy, Romans 9:16, and
moreover, this calling is said to be "in Christ Jesus"; for both the purpose and grace, according to
which men are called, are in him; the grace by which they are called, and which is implanted in
them when called, is all in and from Christ; the blessings of grace, which they then in person
enjoy, are spiritual blessings in him; and even the glory they are called unto is in his hands; not
only the promise of eternal life, but that itself; the gift of it is with him, and it comes through him;
yea, they are called by him, and said to be the called of Christ Jesus; now the prize of this calling,
which is what God has prepared from all eternity, which Christ has in his hands, and will give to
all his, and which is of immense richness and eternal duration, and shall be bestowed on all
Christian runners, or true believers, is what the apostle was pressing for, pursuing after, with
much difficulty, through great toil and labour, diligent searching of the Scriptures, frequent
wrestling with God in prayer, and constant attendance on the means of grace, and ordinances of
the Gospel.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
14. high callingliterally, "the calling that is above" (Ga 4:26; Col 3:1): "the heavenly calling"
(Heb 3:1). "The prize" is "the crown of righteousness" (1Co 9:24; 2Ti 4:8). Re 2:10, "crown of life."
1Pe 5:4, "a crown of glory that fadeth not away." "The high," or "heavenly calling," is not

restricted, as Alford thinks, to Paul's own calling as an apostle by the summons of God from
heaven; but the common calling of all Christians to salvation in Christ, which coming from
heaven invites us to heaven, whither accordingly our minds ought to be uplifted
Philippians 3:12
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to
take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.
New Living Translation
I don't mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached
perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me.
English Standard Version
Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own,
because Christ Jesus has made me his own.
New American Standard Bible
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.
King James Bible
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may
apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.
Holman Christian Standard Bible
Not that I have already reached the goal or am already fully mature, but I make every effort to
take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus.
International Standard Version
It's not that I have already reached this goal or have already become perfect. But I keep pursuing
it, hoping somehow to embrace it just as I have been embraced by the Messiah Jesus.
NET Bible
Not that I have already attained this--that is, I have not already been perfected--but I strive to lay
hold of that for which Christ Jesus also laid hold of me.
Aramaic Bible in Plain English
I have not yet received it, neither am I yet perfect, but I run so that I may obtain that thing for
which Yeshua The Messiah apprehended me.
GOD'S WORD Translation
It's not that I've already reached the goal or have already completed the course. But I run to win
that which Jesus Christ has already won for me.
Jubilee Bible 2000
Not as though I had already attained it, either were already perfect, but I follow after, if I may lay
hold of that for which I have also been laid hold of by the Christ, Jesus.
King James 2000 Bible

Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if indeed I
may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.
American King James Version
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may
apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.
American Standard Version
Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect: but I press on, if so be that I may
lay hold on that for which also I was laid hold on by Christ Jesus.
Douay-Rheims Bible
Not as though I has already attained, or were already perfect; but I follow after, if I may by any
means apprehend, wherein I am also apprehended by Christ Jesus.
Darby Bible Translation
Not that I have already obtained [the prize], or am already perfected; but I pursue, if also I may
get possession [of it], seeing that also I have been taken possession of by Christ [Jesus].
English Revised Version
Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect: but I press on, if so be that I may
apprehend that for which also I was apprehended by Christ Jesus.
Webster's Bible Translation
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I pursue, if that I may
apprehend that for which also I am apprehended by Christ Jesus.
Weymouth New Testament
I do not say that I have already won the race or have already reached perfection. But I am
pressing on, striving to lay hold of the prize for which also Christ has laid hold of me.
World English Bible
Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect; but I press on, if it is so that I may
take hold of that for which also I was taken hold of by Christ Jesus.
Young's Literal Translation
Not that I did already obtain, or have been already perfected; but I pursue, if also I may lay hold
of that for which also I was laid hold of by the Christ Jesus;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary
3:12-21 This simple dependence and earnestness of soul, were not mentioned as if the apostle
had gained the prize, or were already made perfect in the Saviour's likeness. He forgot the things
which were behind, so as not to be content with past labours or present measures of grace. He
reached forth, stretched himself forward towards his point; expressions showing great concern to
become more and more like unto Christ. He who runs a race, must never stop short of the end,
but press forward as fast as he can; so those who have heaven in their view, must still press
forward to it, in holy desires and hopes, and constant endeavours. Eternal life is the gift of God,
but it is in Christ Jesus; through his hand it must come to us, as it is procured for us by him.
There is no getting to heaven as our home, but by Christ as our Way. True believers, in seeking
this assurance, as well as to glorify him, will seek more nearly to resemble his sufferings and

death, by dying to sin, and by crucifying the flesh with its affections and lusts. In these things
there is a great difference among real Christians, but all know something of them. Believers
make Christ all in all, and set their hearts upon another world. If they differ from one another,
and are not of the same judgment in lesser matters, yet they must not judge one another; while
they all meet now in Christ, and hope to meet shortly in heaven. Let them join in all the great
things in which they are agreed, and wait for further light as to lesser things wherein they differ.
The enemies of the cross of Christ mind nothing but their sensual appetites. Sin is the sinner's
shame, especially when gloried in. The way of those who mind earthly things, may seem
pleasant, but death and hell are at the end of it. If we choose their way, we shall share their end.
The life of a Christian is in heaven, where his Head and his home are, and where he hopes to be
shortly; he sets his affections upon things above; and where his heart is, there will his
conversation be. There is glory kept for the bodies of the saints, in which they will appear at the
resurrection. Then the body will be made glorious; not only raised again to life, but raised to
great advantage. Observe the power by which this change will be wrought. May we be always
prepared for the coming of our Judge; looking to have our vile bodies changed by his Almighty
power, and applying to him daily to new-create our souls unto holiness; to deliver us from our
enemies, and to employ our bodies and souls as instruments of righteousness in his service.
Pulpit Commentary
Verse 12. - Not as though I had already. attained, either were already perfect; the R.V. renders
this clause more accurately, not that (1. do not say that) I have already obtained. The verb is not
the same with that translated "attain" in ver. 11; it means to get, to win a prize, as in 1
Corinthians 9:24. The tense is aorist: "I say not that I did at once win the prize;" that is, at the
time of his conversion. Compare the tenses used in ver. 8, "I suffered the loss of all things;" and
ver. 12, "I was apprehended;" which both refer to the same time. The prize was gained in a
moment; it needs the continued effort of a lifetime. St. Paul proceeds, using now the perfect
tense, "Nor have I been already made perfect." He has not even now reached perfection; he is
still working out his own salvation. There may be here a delicate allusion to the spiritual pride
which seems to have disturbed the unity of the Philippians (see Philippians 2:2-4). But I follow
after; rather, I pursue, I press on. If that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended
of Christ Jesus. The words rendered "for which" ( ) will admit three different interpretations:
(1) that of A.V., which implies the ellipse of the antecedent "that;"
(2) that given in the margin of R.V., "seeing that;" and
(3) that of the R.V., "for which," for which purpose (that is, that I may press on and persevere) I
was also apprehended by Christ Jesus. All these translations are possible, and all give a good
sense. Perhaps
(2) best suits the context, "I press on to lay hold o[the prize, because Christ first laid hold of me."
The grace of the Lord Jesus furnishes the highest motive; it is the Christian's bounden duty to
press on always in the Christian race, because Christ first called him.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Not as though I had already attained,.... Or "received"; he had received much grace out of the
fulness of it in Christ; he had received the gift of righteousness, the forgiveness of his sins, and
the adoption of children; he had attained to a lively hope of the incorruptible inheritance, and
had received a right unto it, and had a meetness for it; but as yet he had not received the thing
itself, nor was he come to the end of his race, and so had not received the crown of

righteousness laid up for him; he had not yet attained to perfect knowledge, nor perfect holiness,
nor perfect happiness: wherefore he adds,
either were already perfect; he was perfect in comparison of others, that were in a lower class of
grace, experience, and knowledge, in which sense the word is used in Philippians 3:15, and in 1
Corinthians 2:6; he was so, as perfection intends sincerity, uprightness, and integrity; the root of
the matter, the truth of grace was in him; his faith was unfeigned, his love was without
dissimulation, his hope was without hypocrisy, his conversation in the world was in godly
simplicity, and his preaching and his whole conduct in his ministry were of sincerity, and in the
sight of God: he was perfect as a new creature with respect to parts, having Christ formed in him,
and all the parts of the new man, though not as to degrees; this new man not being as yet grown
up to a perfect man, or to its full growth, to the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ; he
was perfect with respect to justification, being perfectly justified from all things, by the
righteousness of Christ, but not with respect to sanctification; and though his sanctification was
perfect in Christ, yet not in himself; his knowledge was imperfect, something was wanting in his
faith, and sin dwelt in him, of which he sometimes grievously complained: now this he says, lest
he should be thought to arrogate that to himself, which he had not:
but I follow after; Christ the forerunner, after perfect knowledge of him, perfect holiness from
him, and perfect happiness with him: the metaphor is taken from runners in a race, who pursue it
with eagerness, press forward with all might and main, to get up to the mark, in order to receive
the prize; accordingly the Syriac version renders it, , "I run", and so the Arabic: the apostle's
sense is, that though he had not yet reached the mark, he pressed forward towards it, he had it
in view, he stretched and exerted himself, and followed up very closely to it, in hope of enjoying
the prize:
if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus; he was
apprehended of Christ, when he met him in his way to Damascus, stopped him in his journey,
laid him prostrate on the ground, and laid hold on him as his own, challenged and claimed his
interest in him, Acts 9:3, as one that the Father had given him, and he had purchased by his
blood; he entered into him, and took possession of him, and took up his residence in him, having
dispossessed the strong man armed, and ever since held him as his own; and he apprehended,
or laid hold on him, to bring him as he had engaged to do, to a participation of grace here, and
glory hereafter; that he might know him himself, and make him known to others; that he might
be made like unto him, have communion with him, and everlastingly enjoy him: and these things
the apostle pursued after with great vehemence, that he might apprehend them, and be in full
possession of them; and which he did, in the way and manner hereafter described.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
12. Translate, "Not that I," &c. (I do not wish to be understood as saying that, &c.).
attained"obtained," namely, a perfect knowledge of Christ, and of the power of His death, and
fellowship of His sufferings, and a conformity to His death.
either were already perfect"or am already perfected," that is, crowned with the garland of
victory, my course completed, and perfection absolutely reached. The image is that of a race
course throughout. See 1Co 9:24; Heb 12:23. See Trench [Greek Synonyms of the New
Testament].
I follow after"I press on."

apprehend apprehended"If so be that I may lay hold on that (namely, the prize, Php 3:14)
for which also I was laid hold on by Christ" (namely, at my conversion, So 1:4; 1Co 13:12).
Jesusomitted in the oldest manuscripts. Paul was close to "apprehending" the prize (2Ti 4:7, 8).
Christ the Author, is also the Finisher of His people's "race."
Philippians 3:12 Additional Commentaries
Finishing Well

2 Timothy 4:7 ESV / 109 helpful votes


I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
Acts 20:24 ESV / 54 helpful votes
But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the
ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
1 Corinthians 9:24-27 ESV / 43 helpful votes
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain
it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an
imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it
under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.
Hebrews 12:1 ESV / 41 helpful votes
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin
which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
Philippians 3:14 ESV / 41 helpful votes
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Colossians 1:10-14 ESV / 27 helpful votes
So as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and
increasing in the knowledge of God. May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might,
for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the
inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the
kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Philippians 1:6 ESV / 18 helpful votes
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus
Christ.
Luke 14:28-30 ESV / 18 helpful votes
For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to
complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock
him, saying, This man began to build and was not able to finish.
2 John 1:8 ESV / 13 helpful votes
Watch yourselves, so that you may not lose what we have worked for, but may win a full reward.

Philippians 3:12-16 ESV / 10 helpful votes


Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ
Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do:
forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of
the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you
think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. Only let us hold true to what we have attained.
Luke 14:25-35 ESV / 9 helpful votes
Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them, If anyone comes to me and does not hate
his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot
be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. For which of
you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?
Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, ...
James 1:3 ESV / 8 helpful votes
For you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.
Hebrews 10:35 ESV / 8 helpful votes
Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward.
Colossians 3:23 ESV / 8 helpful votes
Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,
Romans 8:29 ESV / 7 helpful votes
For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he
might be the firstborn among many brothers.
Matthew 28:18-20 ESV / 7 helpful votes
And Jesus came and said to them, All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and
make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the
age.
Matthew 25:14-30 ESV / 7 helpful votes
For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one
he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who
had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also he who
had the two talents made two talents more. But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground
and hid his master's money. ...
2 Timothy 4:10 ESV / 4 helpful votes
For Demas, in love with this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to
Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia.
Luke 21:5-38 ESV / 4 helpful votes
And while some were speaking of the temple, how it was adorned with noble stones and offerings, he said, As
for these things that you see, the days will come when there will not be left here one stone upon another that
will not be thrown down. And they asked him, Teacher, when will these things be, and what will be the sign

when these things are about to take place? And he said, See that you are not led astray. For many will come in
my name, saying, I am he! and, The time is at hand! Do not go after them. And when you hear of wars and
tumults, do not be terrified, for these things must first take place, but the end will not be at once. ...
Luke 14:31-33 ESV / 4 helpful votes
Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is
able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? And if not, while the other is
yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. So therefore, any one of you who does
not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.
Luke 12:40 ESV / 4 helpful votes
You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
Ecclesiastes 7:8 ESV / 4 helpful votes
Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
Hebrews 12:2 ESV / 3 helpful votes
Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the
cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
Ephesians 4:31-32 ESV / 3 helpful votes
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be
kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
Acts 7:59-60 ESV / 3 helpful votes
And as they were stoning Stephen, he called out, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And falling to his knees he
cried out with a loud voice, Lord, do not hold this sin against them. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
John 19:30 ESV / 3 helpful votes
When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, It is finished, and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
John 17:1-26 ESV / 3 helpful votes
When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour has come;
glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal
life to all whom you have given him. And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus
Christ whom you have sent. I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.
And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world
existed. ...
Luke 23:23 ESV / 3 helpful votes
But they were urgent, demanding with loud cries that he should be crucified. And their voices prevailed.
Luke 21:27-28 ESV / 3 helpful votes
And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things
begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.

Luke 14:34-35 ESV / 3 helpful votes


Salt is good, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is of no use either for the soil or
for the manure pile. It is thrown away. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
Jeremiah 32:27 ESV / 3 helpful votes
Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me?
Luke 18:31 ESV / 2 helpful votes
And taking the twelve, he said to them, See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about
the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished.
Luke 7:36-50 ESV / 2 helpful votes
One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee's house and took his place at the
table. And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the
Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she
began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed
them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, If this man
were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a
sinner. And Jesus answering said to him, Simon, I have something to say to you. And he answered, Say it,
Teacher. ...
2 Timothy 3:16 ESV / 1 helpful vote
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in
righteousness,

Christian Spirituality 3: Biblical Images and Christian


Spirituality
PDF and .doc files of the overheads used for this presentation are available from the Christian Spirituality Home Page or from the
download page.

Topics
(These topics are from Chapter 5 in Christian Spirituality. An Introduction)

1. Introduction
2. The Feast
2.1. Biblical Images
2.2. Use in Spirituality

3. The Journey
3.1. Biblical Images
3.2. Use in Spirituality

4. Exile
4.1. Biblical Images
4.2. Use in Spirituality

5. The Struggle
5.1. Biblical Images
5.2. Use in Spirituality

6. Purification
6.1. Biblical Images
6.2. Use in Spirituality

7. The Desert
7.1. Biblical Images
7.2. Use in Spirituality

8. Ascent
8.1. Biblical Images
8.2. Use in Spirituality

9. Darkness and Light


9.1. Biblical Images
9.2. Use in Spirituality

10. Silence
10.1. Biblical Images
10.2. Use in Spirituality

References

1. Introduction
What is Christian Spirituality?

Christianity Spirituality is the quest for a fulfilled and authentic life, that involves

taking the beliefs and values of Christianity

and weaving them into the fabric of our lives

so that they "animate," provide the "breath" and "spirit" and "fire" for our lives

Biblically derived images that we will consider:

The Feast

The Journey

Exile

Struggle

Purification

The Desert

Ascent

Darkness and Light

Silence

2. The Feast
2.1. Biblical Images
Jesus compared Kingdom of God to a great banquet in celebration of a marriage (Luke 14:15-24)

The Father of Prodigal son threw a feast when the Prodigal son returned (Luke 15:11-24)

2.2. Use in Spirituality


Themes in the image of a feast

abundance of food and drink to satisfy hunger

invitation. Those invited to feast are wanted and are welcome

celebration, rejoicing. Marks a great occasion, such as a wedding

The human hunger for God and the Feast to come


Augustine: you have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you

Blaise Pascal (1623-62) on the inner human emptiness due to the absence of God:
What else does this longing and helplessness proclaim, but that there was once in each person a true happiness,
of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace? We try to fill this in vain with everything around us,
seeking in things that are not there the help we cannot find in those that are there. Yet none can change things,
because this infinite abyss can only be filled with something that is infinite and unchanging in other words, by
God himself. God alone is our true good.

C.S. Lewis (1898-1963):


The books or the music in which we thought the beauty was located will betray us if we trust to them; it was not
in them, it only came through them, and what came through them was longing. These things the beauty, the
memory of our own past are good images of what we really desire; but if they are mistaken for the thing itself
they turn into dumb idols, breaking the hearts of their worshippers. For they are not the thing itself; they are
only the scent of a flower we have not found, the echo of a tune we have not heard, news from a country we have
not visited

3. The Journey
3.1. Biblical Images

Biblical images of journey include:

Abrahams journey to Canaan

The wandering of the Israelites in the desert for 40 years before coming to the promised land

The return of the people to Jerusalem after exile in Babylon in 586 B.C.

Pauls great missionary journeys

Early Christians were called followers of the way (e.g. Acts 9:2, 24:14). Christian life was thought of as a journey of
deliverance from bondage to sin before arriving in the heavenly city
In the Letters, we find the comparison of Christian life to a race, arduous journey under pressure, with a crown at the end
(Galatians 2:2; 2 Tim. 4:7; Hebrews 12:1-2)

3.2. Use in Spirituality


Insights for spirituality in the image of Christian life as a Journey:

we frequently use maps on a journey to help us on the way. Our maps in the Journey of our lives are the shared
experience of others who have made that Journey

Anticipating our arrival and envisioning the New Jerusalem can provide encouragement on the way

the Christian Journey is not merely individual pilgrimage, but a corporate journey in which we can offer each other
mutual support

New Testament models of athlete and soldiers highlight importance of discipline in Christian Life: Asceticism (Greek askesis
discipline)
Self-discipline, training a means of eliminating barriers to spiritual growth, so we reach our goal of arriving safely in our
heavenly homeland

Works of Spirituality with the theme of journeying include:

Dante (1265-1321) Divine Comedy: journey from the darkness of the woods to encounter with God in a beatific
vision

John Bunyan (1628-88): Pilgrims Progress. Story of Christians journey from the City of Destruction to the

Heavenly City

4. Exile
4.1. Biblical Images
Jan. 586 BC: Babylon lay siege to the Jerusalem
Jul. 586 BC: broke through the walls of Jerusalem

army routed

chief building destroyed

temple furnishings taken to Babylon as booty

people deported to Babylon to live in exile

Interpreted as:

judgment for lapses into pagan religious beliefs

opportunity for a period of repentance and renewal

4.2. Use in Spirituality


We are citizens of heaven (Paul), and our present life a period of exile from the heavenly Jerusalem where we belong

Peter Abelard (1079-1142):


Now, in the meanwhile, with hearts raised on high
We for that country must yearn and must sigh
Seeking Jerusalem, dear native land,
Through our long exile on Babylons strand

Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109) Prayer to Christ


All this I hold with unwavering faith
And weep over the hardship of exile.
Hoping in the sole consolation of your coming
Ardently longing for the glorious contemplation of your face

5. The Struggle
5.1. Biblical Images
Paul talks of putting on the full armor of God to protect against spiritual attack (Ephesians 6:10-18)
In 2 Tim. 2:3, Christians are compared to soldiers; that is, as those who need self-discipline to persevere in the struggles ahead

In the Old Testament, we have the image of Jacobs struggle with an unidentified man (God) by the River Jabbok (Genesis
32:22-32)

5.2. Use in Spirituality


Contexts in which the image of Christian life as a struggle has been used in spirituality:

1. external struggle against those hostile to Christianity

2. internal struggle against temptation

3. a struggle with God

Examples of spiritual works on the internal struggle against temptation:

Interior Castle by Teresa of Avila (1515-82). Invites readers to:

look into their souls

understand themselves

combat the sins which they find

Spiritual Combat (Combattimento Spirituale) 1589, by Lorenzo Scupoli. Went through 250 editions 1589-1750

Puritan Spirituality. John Owen (1616-83): On the Mortification of Sin in Believers

The image of struggle with God is found in both Thomas Aquinas and John Wesley, who both wrote of prayer as a struggle
with God in order to gain insights into Gods will and purpose

6. Purification
6.1. Biblical Images
The Day of Atonement ritual (Leviticus 16) was the preparation required for high priest before entering into the presence of
God
Psalm 51 has the theme of cleansing from sin:

Wash away all my iniquity


And cleanse me from my sin. . .
Cleanse me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

In the Letter to the Hebrews:

Christ the perfect sacrifice who takes away the stain of sin (Hebrews 4:14-16)

Christs death sprinkles the hearts of believers, cleanses guilty consciences (Hebrews 10:22)

water of baptism described as symbol of the cleansing resulting from Christs death on the cross

In the Book of Revelation:


Cleansing as being washed in the blood of the Lamb (Rev. 7:14)

6.2. Use in Spirituality


Sin is like contamination or stain within us, and a goal of our life is to purify and cleanse ourselves through discipline and the
grace of God
Sin has distorted the image and likeness of God within us

Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) Sermon on the Song of Songs:


We are repairing the image of God within us, and the way is being prepared, by the grace of God, for the
retrieval of that honor which we once possessed, but which we forfeited on account of sin

Hugh of Balma (13th Century) and the 3 ways or paths in Christian spirituality

1. purgative way via purgative. Purgation of the soul from sin

2. way of illumination via illuminativa. Soul enlightened by rays of divine wisdom through mediation on Scripture
and prayer

3. way of union via unitiva. Soul united with God

7. The Desert
7.1. Biblical Images
Biblical images of the desert and wilderness include:

Wandering of Israelites in the desert before coming to the promised land

Jeremiah and Hosea: the desert as a place for the purification and renewal of Israel

Elijah and John the Baptist: the desert as a place of prayer and purification

Jesus withdrew into the wilderness for 40 days after his baptism

7.2. Use in Spirituality


The desert is a lonely place. The individual is alone with God, able to reflect, mediate, pray without distraction.
This has been taken both literally and allegorically in Christian spirituality

Literally:
o

Antony of Egypt (251-356): founded a community in the desert, away from the world

Carmelites: hermits on Mount Carmel. Later moved to Europe. Retreats to isolated centers recreated the
solitude of Mount Carmel

Allegorically
o

Origen: A Christians life is a wandering in the desert before we finally cross the Jordan into the promised
land

the manna in the desert sometimes seen as Gods providing spiritual nourishment on our journeys (abbott
Rupert of Deutz (1075-1130)

8. Ascent
8.1. Biblical Images
Moses ascended Sinai to receive the Commandments
Jesus ascended a mountain to be transfigured
Jacob dreams of a ladder between heaven and earth (Genesis 28:12)

Images of ascent bring to the mind and heart a sense of:

drawing closer to God

a transcendence from transitory human world to heaven

8.2. Use in Spirituality


Our Christian life involves ascent, progressive spiritual growth bringing us closer to God and to the transcendence of heaven

Bonaventure (1217-74): contemplation a means of ascent to God. Journey up the mountain begins with love Christ,
sustained by meditation on Christ crucified

St. John of the Cross (1542-91): Ascent of Mount Carmel. Spirituality involves progressive growth that brings us
closer to God

Dante in Divine Comedy climbs Mount Purgatory to get closer to God

Thomas Mertons Seven Storey Mountain (1946): writes of his own spiritual growth in terms of 7 mountains

9. Darkness and Light


9.1. Biblical Images
God is often described in images of illumination:

Genesis: God creates light, vanquishing the darkness (chaos and confusion)

God presence and power a great light (Isaiah 9:2): the people who walked in darkness have seen a great light

Jesus is the light of the world who overcomes darkness (John 8:12)

God is also sometimes associated with images of darkness

Moses approaches God through darkness and cloud

Paul: we are seeing through a glass darkly

9.2. Use in Spirituality


Themes of darkness in Christian Spirituality:

an image of doubt. We are unable to see properly and understand what is going on

a symbol of sin. Sin is a barrier to God, blinding us to God

a symbol of divine unknowability. Our limited minds cannot full comprehend the creator, and so we now live in a
divine night in which God is ultimately unknowable (Gregory of Nyssa, 330-395, Gregory of Nazianzus 329-89)

Cloud of Unknowing (perhaps by Walter Hilton, 1343-96): there is a cloud of unknowing lies between God and the
believer, so we can never see, understand, or experience God clearly. Our lives are a dark road of unknowing
and inner suffering with only occasional moments of rapture in partial and temporary glimpses of God

John of the Cross (1542-91) wrote of the dark night of the soul: the way the soul is stripped of self-assurance to open a path
to a closer relationship to God. It has two aspects:

active aspect of the night: through believers voluntary self-discipline and submission

passive aspect of the night: in the believers act of contemplation, God becomes active and leads the believer to new
insights

10. Silence
10.1. Biblical Images
Habakkuk: the earth should be silent in the presence of God in the temple (Habakkuk 2:20)

Job reduced to silence at the end, aware of his foolishness in the sight of God (Job 40:1-3)

Revelation 8:1: silence in heaven from human awe in the presence of God

10.2. Use in Spirituality


Human words can never articulate the full wonder of God, and the only appropriate response when confronted with that
wonder is silence

Silence liberates the mind and imagination to focus on God

Psalm 46:10: Be still and know that I am God

Arthur Michael Ramsey (1904-88), Archbishop of Canterbury


Silence enable us to be aware of God, to let mind and imagination dwell upon his truth, to let prayer to be
listening before it is talking, and to discover our own selves in a way that is not always possible when we are
making or listening to noise. There comes sometimes an inner silence in which the soul discovers itself in a new
dimension of energy and peace, a dimension which the restless life can miss. . . Into the Christians use of silence
there may flow the wonder of God the creator, the recollection of the life and death and resurrection of Jesus,
the recalling of scenes in his life, often a passage of the Bible, the glories of nature in which the finger of God is
present, gratitude for personal blessings or the words of poets who tell of wonder and beauty

Hesychasm (hesychia: Greek for silence or stillness)

a movement in Eastern Christianity (8th century and after) in which the believer tries to achieve isolation from all
distractions to focus on God by repeating the Jesus Prayer: Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me

References
Christian Spirituality. An Introduction. Alister E. McGrath. Blackwell Publishers, 1999. ISBN: 0631212817 (Chapter 5:
Biblical Images and Spirituality)

https://books.google.com.ng/books?id=m4EtBQAAQBAJ&pg=PA4&lpg=PA4&dq=SCRIPTURE:
+CHRISTIAN+RACE+VERSUS+CHRISTIAN+JOURNEY&source=bl&ots=fIzpW4xZ0K&sig=PReqfV6f6p
8eU7Tcjp8JwHDVq1U&hl=en&sa=X&ei=pHIlVYbLMnyPPT9gdgE&ved=0CEQQ6AEwBTgK#v=onepage&q=SCRIPTURE%3A%20CHRISTIAN%20RACE
%20VERSUS%20CHRISTIAN%20JOURNEY&f=false

https://books.google.com.ng/books?id=8r-kO5aUL4kC&pg=PA69&lpg=PA69&dq=SCRIPTURE:
+CHRISTIAN+RACE+VERSUS+CHRISTIAN+JOURNEY&source=bl&ots=_QW5mVuzGz&sig=xCfD7iFQ
tHjNuFFDFuKY6f6NqFw&hl=en&sa=X&ei=pHIlVYbLMnyPPT9gdgE&ved=0CDYQ6AEwAjgK#v=onepage&q=SCRIPTURE%3A%20CHRISTIAN%20RACE
%20VERSUS%20CHRISTIAN%20JOURNEY&f=false
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Lesson 44: Faith to Run the Christian Marathon (Hebrews 12:1-3)


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For many years Ive jogged for exercise, but Ive never run a marathon. My knees have never been strong
enough to endure that long of a race. I have run a couple of 10K races. But if you have run in at least a 5K race,
you should be able to identify with our text. If the thought of running in such a race makes you want to go take
a nap, I only point out that I derived the metaphor of running a Christian long-distance race from the text itself.
I didnt make it up! If youre a couch potato type, maybe youve seen a race on TV that will help you to relate
to this message.
In Hebrews 10:36, the author exhorted his readers, For you have need of endurance, so that when you have
done the will of God, you may receive what was promised [lit., the promise]. Then he devotes chapter 11 to
many examples of Old Testament saints who endured by faith, although they did not receive the promise
(Christ), which we have received. In our text, he returns to the theme of endurance, saying, We have both this
great cloud of witnesses from the Old Testament and Jesus Himself, who is the supreme example of one who
endured horrible suffering by faith. He endured the cross and now is at the Fathers right hand. So,
To run the Christian marathon with endurance, faith focuses on Jesus, who endured the cross and received the
reward.
1. The Christian life is a difficult marathon that we must run.
Many years ago, a young woman who was a drug addict found my name in the phone book and began calling
me frequently. She was married with two small children, but she was hooked on drugs. She had no concept that
normal people sleep at night, and so she would call at 2 a.m. from some phone booth where she was stoned out
of her mind.
She professed to believe in Christ, and said that she wanted to follow Him, but she had no idea of what that
meant. On one occasion when she was relatively sober, I described in detail what a daily walk with Christ looks
like. I explained what a daily time in the Word and prayer was like, what obedience to the Bible means, how to
think like a Christian, etc.
When I was done, I asked, Have you ever done anything close to what Ive just described? She said, Yeah, I
did that once for two weeks, but it didnt work. She thought that she had given it a fair try in two weeks! I
explained to her that the Christian faith isnt a two-week sprint. Its a lifelong marathon.

The Christian life is a lifelong, grueling race that entails some long hills to climb and some swampy marshes to
plod through. To make it to the end, you need self-discipline to get into good shape, you will need to maintain
your motivation, and you will need sustained effort. No one enters a marathon with the thought of dropping out
after a mile. Finishing well is everything. In this race, you are not competing with other believers. Were all on
the same team. Were competing against the enemy of our souls, who opposes Gods kingdom and wants us to
drop out.
2. To run the Christian marathon, we must get into shape and stay in shape.
The primary thing, as I said, is self-discipline motivated by the goal of finishing well. But it specifically
involves two things:
A. We must lay aside every encumbrance.

The word means weight. It can refer to physical weight (obesity), or to unnecessary baggage. Ancient Greek
runners would actually run naked so as not to be encumbered. Olympic athletes in our day wear some pretty
skimpy outfits. They dont want anything to slow them down or drain their energy.
Picture the start of the Boston Marathon. The lean, muscular Kenyan runners are at the front of the pack,
waiting for the starting gun. A couple of skinny American runners are there, too. But next to them is a fat, flabby
guy wearing a parka, all-weather pants, hiking boots, with a 50-pound pack. You ask curiously, Whats in your
pack? He says, Ive got all the sodas and Twinkies that Ill need to finish this race. Youre thinking, Right!
That guy wouldnt stand a chance of finishing, let alone winning, because he has not laid aside every
encumbrance.
Encumbrances are distinguished here from sins. They include things that are not intrinsically wrong, but theyre
wrong because they keep you from running as you should. If you got rid of those heavy hiking boots and put on
some jogging shoes, youd run better. If you dropped the pack and dressed in shorts and a tank top, you might
finish the race.
At the risk of stepping on some toes, but to help you apply this, let me get more specific. Lets say that in the
morning, you dont have time to read your Bible and the newspaper before you head out the door to work or
school. Which do you choose? You protest, But I need to keep abreast of whats happening in the world!
Really? Where does the Bible say that? It does say that you need to drink in the pure milk of the word, so that
by it you may grow in respect to salvation (1 Pet. 2:2). Maybe you dont have time to read anything because
you dont set your alarm early enough to spend just 10 minutes with the Lord. You need to shed the
encumbrance of loving sleep or the paper more than God.
Too much recreation can be another encumbrance in the race. We all need some free time free to be renewed,
but the question is, How much time do you need? Many Christians fill every evening watching TV or playing
computer games, but they dont have time to study the Bible or read good books. They view the entire weekend
as a time for recreation, even if it means missing church. To run the race, youve got to lay aside these
encumbrances.
Some Christians ask the wrong question here. They ask, Whats wrong with this movie, or listening to this
music, or participating in this activity? The right question is, Does this help me to grow in godliness? If not,
cast it off as dead weight.

B. We must lay aside every sin that so easily entangles us.

In biblical times people wore long robes. You cant run with a long robe entangling your legs. You must either
pull it up and tuck it in your belt or cast it totally aside. In the case of sin, you must totally get rid of it if you
want to run the Christian race.
This doesnt refer only to certain besetting sins, but to all sins. Sin always begins in the mind, and so we must
judge all sin at the thought level. Pride, lust, envy, greed, anger, grumbling, selfishnessall of these things
originate in our thought life. If you cut it off there, it goes no farther. If you entertain these things, they incubate
and develop into sinful words and actions (James 1:14-15). But the authors point is, you cant run the Christian
race if you keep tripping over your sins.
3. To run the Christian marathon, we must run with endurance the course set before us.
Note two things:
A. God sets the course.

If youre running a marathon, you cant make up your own course. If you stray from the course, youll be
disqualified. The race is set before us, just as Jesus had the joy set before Him. God is the Sovereign One
who sets the course for each of us, just as He set the course of the cross for Jesus.
To finish the Christian marathon, its important to keep in mind at all times that the Sovereign God sets the
course. You may not like parts of the course. You may be prone to grumble, Why did the course have to go
over this hill, or through this swamp? The answer is, Because the Sovereign God planned it this way. You
wont be able to run by faith unless you submit your will to His will.
B. We must run with endurance.

Running with endurance requires adopting a certain mindset. If you have in mind that youre running a 400meter race, youre not going to do well when the pack keeps going after 400 meters. When you learn that the
race has barely begun, youre going to quit with a bad attitude.
This is what Jesus meant when He talked about counting the cost of following Him (Luke 14:28-33). Before
you make a glib commitment to be a Christian, think it through. Are you willing to put out the effort, the sweat,
the endurance, and the pain of going the distance? If not, dont start the race, because youre going to look
pretty silly when you drop out after 400 meters!
Obviously, one key to running the whole distance is motivation. But where do you get the motivation to run the
Christian marathon? Our author suggests two sources, both valuable, but the second is incomparably greater
than the first.
4. The encouragement to keep running comes from those who have run before us, but
primarily from Jesus Himself.
A. The great cloud of witnesses encourages us to keep running.

The opening phrase of 12:1 refers back to chapter 11. All of the Old Testament saints, who endured all sorts of
trials by faith, should encourage us to keep running when we feel like quitting. The word cloud was a classical
Greek metaphor for a large multitude (editors footnote in Calvins Commentaries [Baker], p.311).
There is a question about whether these witnesses are watching us from heaven as we run the race; or, more in
line with the meaning of the word witness, do we look to their testimony as an example of how to run the race?
There is no indication in the Bible (unless it is here) that those in heaven are watching us on earth.

Probably, with the race metaphor, the picture here is that as we run the race, along the route we encounter the
Old Testament saints (and, by extension, other heroes of the faith in the New Testament, plus those who lived
after biblical times). They are calling out to us by their examples of faith, Keep going, I made it and you can,
too! I know its hard, but the reward is worth it! Dont quit! The finish line is not too far ahead!
I would encourage you to study both the many interesting characters in the Bible and the great men and women
who have run the race of faith over the course of church history. Youll learn how they failed, so that you dont
have to make the same mistakes. And youll learn how they ran well, so that you can imitate their faith (13:7).
Many of the battles they fought, whether on a personal level or in their ministries, you will have to fight, too.
Knowing that a godly pastor like Jonathan Edwards got voted out of his church, and understanding the reasons
why, can be a great source of encouragement to a pastor who is battling in a difficult church ministry. Realizing
all of the problems that Hudson Taylors China Inland Mission went through can help you to hang in there when
problems multiply. I sometimes think about the disappointments, suffering, and persecution that Adoniram
Judson endured in Burma and think, I can endure a few hardships in the ministry. But the best help in the race
of faith does not come from this cloud of witnesses.
B. Jesus Himself is the main motivation to keep running.

The main way to run with endurance the race that is set before us is, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and
perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at
the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against
Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart (12:2-3).
The pronoun our is not in the original before faith (as in the NIV & KJV). The Greek text has the definite
article, the faith, meaning, the faith that is needed to endure. Jesus is the author or Captain of that kind of
faith, and He brings it to perfection or completion. He is the A to Z, the complete encyclopedia of faith.
The name Jesus deliberately focuses on His humanity. As a man, Jesus showed us exactly how to live by faith
in God in this world. He trusted God at the beginning of His ministry when Satan tempted Him. He relied on
God to such a degree that He could claim, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees
the Father doing (John 5:19). He claimed to speak the very words that He heard from the Father (John 8:38).
He trusted the Father in the Garden and He went to the cross entrusting His soul to the Father. His final words
included, Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit (Luke 23:46). So from start to finish, but especially on
the cross, Jesus showed us how to walk by faith. The text reveals five things about Jesus:
(1). Jesus is the author or captain of faith.

We encountered this word in Hebrews 2:10, which stated that God perfected the author (or, captain) of our
salvation through sufferings. It is also used in Acts 3:15 (you put to death the Prince of life) and Acts 5:31
(whom God exalted to His right hand as a Prince and Savior). It can mean author or originator, in the sense
that Jesus is the source of life, salvation, and faith. It also refers to the leader or captain, the one who goes
before the troops, showing them the way.
All of these senses of the word apply to Jesus with regard to our faith. No sinner is capable of believing in
Christ for salvation unless He grants it (Acts 5:31; 11:18; Eph. 2:8, 9; Phil. 1:29). But, also, He blazes the trail
of faith for all who follow Him. He goes before us, showing us how to live by faith in God alone.

(2). Jesus is the perfecter of faith.

This means that He finished the course of faith perfectly, showing us how to finish well. But also, He brings our
faith to completion, as Paul states (Phil. 1:6), For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good
work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
(3). Jesus shows us the motivation to endure by faith.

Who for the joy set before Him endured the cross. The reason that Jesus could endure the horrible prospect of
bearing our sin was that He focused on the joy set before Him. This joy included the joy of bringing many sons
to glory (2:10; see also, Isa. 53:10-11). But also, the greatest joy was that of glorifying the Father by
completing the work that the Father gave Him to do (John 17). When Jesus returned to heaven, triumphant over
Satan, sin, death, and hell, the angels rejoiced. The marriage supper of the Lamb will be a time for us to rejoice
and be glad and give the glory to Him (Rev. 19:7). Keeping that glorious joy in view enabled Jesus to endure
the agony of the cross.
(4). Jesus shows us the greatest example of endurance by faith through the most difficult trial
ever.

He endured the cross, despising the shame. He endured such hostility by sinners against Himself. No one
has ever endured a greater trial than the cross. Others have been crucified and others have been tortured in
indescribably horrible ways. But only Jesus knew the glory and joy of perfect fellowship with the Father in
heaven before coming to this earth. Only Jesus knew the perfect holiness of His divine nature. To leave heaven
and take on the form of a servant and be obedient to His death on the cross as the substitute for our sins, is
unmatched in human history.
(5). Jesus shows us the final reward of faith.

He has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. He is in the most exalted place in the universe, the
place of all rule and authority. The holy angels bow before Him in adoration and reverence. While Jesus is
unique, His exaltation to the right hand of the throne of God shows us a glimpse of His glory that we will share
throughout eternity, if by faith we run with endurance.
5. We run with endurance by fixing our eyes on Jesus.
Note four things:
A. Fixing our eyes on Jesus requires taking our eyes off of ourselves.

Fixing our eyes is literally looking off to. The idea is taking your eyes off of other things and focusing on
Jesus alone. The Bible tells us to examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith (2 Cor. 13:5). We must examine
ourselves before partaking of the Lords Supper (1 Cor. 11:28). But, we should not live with our focus
constantly on ourselves, but rather, on the Lord. In your daily quiet time, its good to pause and examine your
heart. Is there any sin you need to confess? Is there a bad attitude or a lack of faithfulness? But then turn your
eyes toward Jesus and all that you are in Him.
B. Fixing our eyes on Jesus requires trusting all that He is for us.

Paul often refers to our being in Christ. Baptism pictures the fact that we are totally identified with Him in
His death, burial and resurrection (Rom. 6:3-5). When Satan tempts us with guilt over past sins, we take refuge
in Christs shed blood (Eph. 1:7). All of Gods promises are yes in Christ (2 Cor. 1:20). We are even seated with
Christ in the heavenly places (Eph. 1:20)! Focus on these truths by faith!
C. Fixing our eyes on Jesus means trusting Him when sinners wrong us.

The author tells us to consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself. Consider
(used only here in the N.T.) means to calculate. Just as Jesus balanced the joy set before Him against the cross,

so we must consider the fact that the more committed we are to Jesus, the more those who oppose Him will
oppose us, no matter how nice we try to be (John 15:20). But we calculate that the joy of knowing and obeying
Jesus is greater than all of the rejection, anger, ridicule, or anything worse that we might have to bear for His
sake.
D. Fixing our eyes on Jesus is the key to not grow weary and lose heart.

The literal rendering is, that you not fail through weariness, fainting in your souls. Spiritual failure happens
gradually from continuous weakening (B. F. Westcott, The Epistle to the Hebrews [Eerdmans], p. 398). Just as a
runner who is not in excellent condition gradually slows down and finally collapses, so the believer who does
not keep looking with faith to Jesus will eventually collapse. We call it burn out today, and it seems that there
are many who are weary in their souls in the Christian marathon. The remedy is to fix our eyes on Jesus.
Conclusion
If youre weary in the race, maybe you need to cast off some encumbrances or entangling sins. Someone has
pointed out that gold is just as heavy a weight as lead. If youre trying to carry the worlds treasures while you
run the race of faith, youre going to get tired. Throw off whatever hinders your growth in godliness.
Perhaps youre grumbling about the course that God has set for you. You look at others who are putting foreign
armies to flight and receiving back their dead by resurrection, but youre wandering in deserts and mountains
and caves and holes in the ground (11:34-35, 38). You think, Its not fair! You need to submit to the sovereign
hand of God, who sets different courses for His children according to His purpose.
Perhaps you need to refocus on Jesus and the joy of receiving the crown of righteousness that He has promised
to all who finish the course (2 Tim. 4:7, 8).
You cant run the race if youve never entered it. If youve never put your faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and
Lord, you arent even in the race. If you dont enter the race and run with endurance, you wont get the prize.
Discussion Questions
1. How do we find the balance between our effort to run the race and Gods power working
through us (see Phil. 2:12-13).
2. What are some spiritual encumbrances in your life that are not necessarily sin, but they
keep you from running well?
3. Is burn out sin? How can it be avoided?
4. Where is the balance between self-evaluation and looking to Jesus? How can we know if
were out of balance here?

Copyright, Steven J. Cole, 2004, All Rights Reserved.


Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture Quotations are from the New American Standard Bible, Updated Edition
The Lockman Foundation