Bold As A lion

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May 25, 2007                     Bold As A Lion           Kathleen Maples

Pro 28:1 The wicked flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion.

In the Websters' Dictionary (2005 Edition) the word 'wicked' means evil in
principle or practice, sinful, immoral, bad. Wickedness is listed as meaning
immorality, depravity; sin. In the Hebrew this word means morally wrong person
who has been condemned as guilty; ungodly. One who has sinned against God.
Consider this carefully. If the wicked flee, what are they running from? The
Scripture says no man is chasing them. They are not being persecuted, or
harassed. But the righteous is another story altogether. The righteous have a
place to hide for refuge. They can be confident, sure, because they have hope in
Jesus Christ. They do not have to fret or worry. They know they are secure,
covered by the blood of Jesus Christ. They have the promises of Almighty God to
stand on, and the power of His Holy Spirit in their lives to root out and throw
down any fear that would try to grip them. Our part is to recognize it and bring it
to Him, and lay it down, trusting He said He's not given us a spirit of fear but of
love and power and of a sound mind. (2Ti_1:7)

Pro 28:2 For the transgression of a land many are the princes thereof: but by a man of
   understanding and knowledge the state thereof shall be prolonged.
Pro 28:3 A poor man that oppresseth the poor is like a sweeping rain which leaveth no food.
Pro 28:4 They that forsake the law praise the wicked: but such as keep the law contend with
Pro 28:5 Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the LORD understand all

This nation is in a moral and religious revolt. There are many politicians, and
rulers in our government that have assisted in this revolt through their own selfish
agendas, and are more concerned with preserving their position in government
rather than doing what is right. They are unjust stewards over this nation. This
transcends party lines. It transcends religions, and denominations. There is much
oppression in our land; on the job, in the schools, in the government.
Righteousness, common sense and truth have been oppressed in the name of
progressive thinking, political correctness, history revision, and politics. Right
has become a dirty word, something viewed with contempt by those in the media,
and some in our government. They prefer the term "left, moderate, progressive
(which translated means liberal) whether it is social or fiscal. You hear the
wickedness of men being excused because some doctor said they have some kind of
disorder and couldn't help themselves but to do whatever heinous act they did. You
hear politicians caught up in scandals and the media gloss over it, and much of the
American public let the media do their thinking for them, and walk around
parroting what they heard some news reporter say, rather than take time to dig in
to the facts and find out the real story. A woman can leave her children in the care
of another and go gallivanting around the country in the name of her career, and
the feminists cheer. Let a wife give up her career for the sake of her family and the
same crowd will vilify her and scorn her. The commandments of God have been
forsaken by this nation in her government, and her education system, and what is
against God is praised as progress and restraint is being cast off. These also are
the first to use His holy name when a tragedy strikes and evoke their mantra of
"God bless America" when what they really mean is "God, if you really exist, bless
America but don't you dare try to tell us how to live. We only want your blessing
not your Word." So the hedge of protection and security is down in this nation.
They have forsaken the law and praise the wicked. They that understand and take
heed to protect and guard the truth of God in their hearts, strive against this at
times. The late Jerry Falwell was a perfect example of this. Didn't Jesus say they
will hate you and persecute you? He had the courage to get on the media and tell
them the truth regardless of whether they liked it or not. Many cruel things were
said about him on the day of his death, but this nation lost a righteous man, and
the Scripture warns us this way:

Isa 57:1 The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken
away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.

Read that again, slowly, please. When a righteous person dies, someone who has
died trusting in and surrendered to the Lord, they go to be with Him. There is evil
to come. What happens to that righteous one who dies and is spared from seeing
the evil to come?

Isa 57:2 He shall enter into peace: they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his
Isa 57:3 But draw near hither, ye sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whore.
Isa 57:4 Against whom do ye sport yourselves? against whom make ye a wide mouth, and
    draw out the tongue? are ye not children of transgression, a seed of falsehood,

What is a sorceress? Forget the ungodly Harry Potter movies for a minute. That
isn't reality. What is a sorceress? The Hebrew meaning here for this word (H6049)
means to cover, or cloud (as with issues of our day and politicians are adept at
doing this, are they not?) Yes, a sorceress is one who practices magic, but it is also
one who clouds the truth, and covers it up with lies, covertly carrying on their own
agenda. How many in authority in our nation also consult astrologers for advice?
How many would visit a psychic? More than you might think. America has become
the adulteress, breaking every vow she made with God, to be a Christian nation.
And if we dare, we should bring that one home and examine ourselves.

Evil men don't understand judgment. You read that word all through the Bible.
Have you ever stopped to consider what it means? Please, let us reason on this
together. It is so vital we understand this. Judgment means there is a Judge, and
He has decreed a verdict on the case before Him. He has pronounced a sentence on
it, He has made a decision, and set a time to execute that decision-or bring it into
effect. He has the Divine Law backing up His decision, and it can't be changed, He
can't be bribed, or persuaded to be other than what He is. He won't turn a blind
eye to it, and feel sorry for us and cut us slack. He already did that when He sent
His Word into the womb of a young virgin named Mary and brought forth His
only Begotten Son. He Himself paid the penalty for our sins, our crimes against the
Divine Law of God. God has pronounced a death sentence on all who are guilty of
breaking His Law. But He has also presented us with a wonderful, merciful,
alternative...what Judge in this nation would look to the criminal and say, I've
already paid the penalty for your crime, I'll satisfy the requirements of your fine,
and I'll go to jail and do your time for you? I'll let them kill me instead of sending
you to the gas chamber. It won't happen. No way. But that is what God did. He
loves us so much, He sent part of Himself to die in our place, to satisfy the just
demands of this Holy God. He is willing to cover those who come and receive Him
with the blood of His Son, and credit them with His righteousness, because we
have none of our own. Those in adversity, who are distressed, who are hurtful to
others, they don't get it. They can't figure this out. Their lives are marked by
mischief in one way or another, whether against themselves by indulging in their
carnal appetites, sastifying the demands of their flesh, or behaving themselves
wickedly. Then I read on and I see that it says "but they that seek the Lord,
understand all things."

If we search out the Lord, go on our face or our knees before Him, and we inquire
of Him, and we ask for HIM not His hand, He will be found of us when we seek, or
look for Him with all our heart. We can't come to Him with a divided heart, or with
a casual attitude and expect to get anywhere. We can worship and pray, and learn
Him through how He reveals Himself to us in prayer, and in His Word. We can
desire to know Him, rather than come with a grocery list of requests, and we will
get somewhere with God. When we do this, the Scripture says we will be able to
know the difference between right and wrong, we will be able to discern and see
things like God does. We see wickedness celebrated in our nation, whether it's the
lifestyles of the rich and shameless, or the obscene contracts sports figures are
paid for playing a game. We see it in our government, when you have certain
people who buddy up to dictators who cruelly oppress and mistreat their own
people. Those who tolerate everything and everyone but Christ and true
Christianity, are called good. When I look around and see the butchery on the
news of our children and teenagers, who have had something precious stolen and
kept from them-that is the knowledge of God, and the life-saving fear that
accompanies that, it aches my heart. We have a whole generation of people who
have not been taught this, and as a result, the children are more influenced by
violence and lawlessness and immorality than anything.

Phi 2:15 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst
of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;

Do I blame the world around us for being what they are? No. Do I like it? No. How
can I possibly change such a corrupt world and their anti-christ ideology? I can't.
But Christ in me, can change a lot. When everyone around me sees HIM (not me)
and they see HIS overcoming life manifested in me, His kindness and compassion,
His smile, His love, for their souls, His gentleness, it will draw. They will either
reject or receive. When the Holy Ghost fell on the 120 in the upper room, they were
living in a city that was extremely hostile to the name of Jesus Christ-the
authorities thought they'd killed Him. They didn't want to ever hear His precious
name again. The disciples were hiding, tarrying, waiting, and they were afraid.
They probably rehearsed the promises and questioned among themselves what
Jesus meant when He said 'receive ye the Holy Ghost'. This was something
unfamiliar with them. I mean, they had cast out devils, they had healed the sick,
and the lame, in Jesus' name when He sent them out. They'd done all these things.
But the one thing they hadn't been able to do was stand up under persecution and
fear. They had fled. They hadn't been able when it come right down to it to lay
down their lives for His sake.

Phi 2:4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
Phi 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

We have promises of God and we know He will take care of us because we are His
children, so should we not be more concerned for the others around us, and
obediently yield ourselves to His purposes? We can ask the Holy Spirit to teach us
how to pray the will of God for our lives to pass. We can pray His Word come to
pass in our lives and trust He will accomplish in us what He said He would. But in
the meantime, we should ask God for His love, His concern for others, because
without it, our own is inadequate. We know we should we be more compassionate,
and longsuffering, we should be more concerned about the lost and dying in our
own families and neighborhoods. But, if we are honest with ourselves, I think the
most of us are lacking in that area. If it's not God's concern and God's love working
in us, then it's a feeling worked up in the flesh and won't accomplish the purpose
and plan of God. We must have HIS love and compassion. Ours is not sufficient.
And how can we possibly have the mind of Christ? It's been given to us in the
Scriptures. We need to ask for Him to engraft it in to us and receive it meekly.
When we feed on the living Word of God under the leadership of the Holy Spirit,
who quickens it to us, reveals it to us, and helps us understand it, it will become a
part of us. Ezekiel heard God talk of this marvelous work.

Eze 36:25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your
   filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.
Eze 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take
   away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh.
Eze 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall
   keep my judgments, and do them.

Do you think He doesn't already know that you feel it too hard for you to do? He's
waiting for us to figure that one out and admit it. To quit striving in our own
strength to do it. We can't anyway. This Scripture tells us how we can have the
mind and life of Christ in us. It's a work God has to do, but we have to present
ourselves to Him, and agree that this is right and accept it-gratefully and joyfully.
Then we can trust Him to literally help us throw off the old man and saturate us
with HIMSELF. His precious, needful Holy Spirit.

Eze 36:28 And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people,
   and I will be your God.
Eze 36:29 I will also save you from all your uncleannesses: and I will call for the corn, and will
   increase it, and lay no famine upon you.

We can live in and on the promises of God. We can draw near to Him and know
Him for ourselves. I don't want to go to church and hear the preacher say "God
told me this" I want to hear the Lord tell me Himself! I want when the preacher
says that, for it to be a confirmation of what I've already learned and heard from
the Lord myself! He will save us from our uncleanness if we run to the blood, and
trust Him. If we will hate our sins, and surrender to Him. We even need Him to
show us how and help us to surrender. He says I will be sanctified in you before
the eyes of the heathen, (Eze_36:23), I will take you out from among the heathen,
(24), I will sprinkle clean water upon you (see Eph 5:26), I will cleanse you from
all your filthiness and your idols, (Eze 36:25), I will give you a new heart and new
spirit, I will take away the hard heart and give you a soft one, I will put my spirit
within you and cause you to walk in my ways, and I will save you from your
uncleanness, I will multiply the fruit of the tree (we are the trees of God, His
planting, called to bear the fruit of the Spirit-which is basically the evidence (fruit)
and result of the Holy Spirit in us working out the life of Christ. That's a lot of I
wills that God promised there to a people who had profaned His holy name, by
going after the world, and living sinful, rebellious lives, and bringing reproach on
Him in the eyes of the world He longed to reach out to. They made God look bad,
and unappealing to the world by the lives they lived. They were not a powerful
testimony of the grace and goodness of God. They were fickle and full of mixture.
And it gets better...

Eze 36:33 Thus saith the Lord GOD; In the day that I shall have cleansed you from all your
   iniquities I will also cause you to dwell in the cities, and the wastes shall be built.
Eze 36:34 And the desolate land shall be tilled, whereas it lay desolate in the sight of all that
   passed by.
Eze 36:35 And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden;
   and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited.
Eze 36:36 Then the heathen that are left round about you shall know that I the LORD build the
   ruined places, and plant that that was desolate: I the LORD have spoken it, and I will do it.

Oh, everything that was ruined by sin, everything broken down, and desolate, oh,
it's not going to be barren anymore. It's going to become fertile ground that can
bear fruit again. He's going to breathe new life into this parched, dry ground, and
it will bear fruit again. The walls are going to go up and there are going to be
people living in these promises. Then those around will know HE alone can restore
what has been ruined by sin and rebellion. He can take something broken and
barren and plant it and cause new life to spring forth. He said HE is the Lord and
He has spoken it and He will do it. But there is something we must do, and it is
very important.

Eze 36:37 Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will yet for this be inquired of by the house of Israel, to do
   it for them; I will increase them with men like a flock.

Ask. Ask Me to do this, God says. Ask me to restore what has been ruined. Ask Me
to perform my promises in your life. Ask me to build you up in the life of My Son,
and fulfill My Word to you. Ask Me for the power of My Holy Spirit to take over
your life and build you up and cause you to bear fruit. What is that fruit He's
talking about? First, reproducing the life of Christ...when we are full of that life, it
will flow like rivers of living waters out of us and the Lord told Ezekiel where ever
that river flowed it would heal what it touched. (See Eze 47). There are the fruits,
or results of the Spirit of God working in us listed in Galatians 5.

Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
Gal 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
Gal 5:24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
Gal 5:25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
Eph 5:9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)
Eph 5:10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.
Eph 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove

Now, if the Holy Spirit is allowed His way in us, this is what we will display to the
world around us that is walking in darkness and blind to the hope of Jesus Christ.
He will empower us to reject the self life and embrace real life-the life of the Spirit.
He will show us how to walk and live in the Spirit everyday. My goodness He
dwells in us, can He know teach us how to walk with Him? By living this way, we
will prove to the world what is acceptable to the Lord. We will not carry on with
works of darkness, foolish talking, foolish living, selfishness, and all the works of
the flesh listed also in Galatians 5, but we will by our very presence, and by the
very obvious difference in us, reprove without a spoken word, these works of
darkness. We can only be a powerful testimony for the Lord Jesus Christ by
yielding ourselves to HIM and letting Him do what He wills in us. Remember all
those "I wills" we read in Ezekiel? He doesn't want to do all that in us so we can
waste it feeling good in church on Sunday. He wants to do that in us so the lost and
dying and needy around us can see the light and come to Him. They will be unable
to deny the truth and reality of God when they see His life being lived in us!

THIS is the answer for the broken schools, and the broken government, and the ills
of society. When Israel began to deteriorate into immorality and rebellion, God
found a man. He sent them and pleaded with them. He didn't gather a heavenly
army and force His way down their throat. He drew them with loving
kindness...He didn't look down His nose on the sinful, He didn't gasp in shock if
somebody walked in church looking different than we think they should. He
reached out to the outcasts. He wasn't afraid to get His hands dirty-did He not
make us out of dust? Did He not reach out to the lepers? He wasn't afraid to touch
them. He wasn't ashamed to be seen talking with them. God give us grace to
present ourselves before the glory of Your presence, and wait on You until You
make YOUR life a reality in these earthen vessels. If our lives do not glorify Him,
and demonstrate HIS heart, what is the point of Jesus' awful death on the cross,
church? God let it not be in vain in our lives! Grant us grace to go to the cross and
be crucified with Him, dead to this world and its ways and our own selfish desires.

Phi 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto
    death, even the death of the cross.
Phi 2:9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above
    every name:
Phi 2:10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in
    earth, and things under the earth;
Phi 2:11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the

He is God. He lowered Himself to do the unthinkable for our sakes. We owe Him
everything. Let Him be God to us, in us and through us. There is no higher calling
than to seek HIM. To know HIM for ourselves, personally. If we do, we will be bold
as a lion in the face of adversity, persecution and mental harassment from the
devil. We will be unashamed, and unafraid. We will be able to stand before Him on
judgment boldly, with confidence, or empty handed. We will understand all things
like the Scripture says. We won't be caught when calamity hits saying "what is
going on?" We will be full of HIM and He will be able to reach out to those around
Phi 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
Phi 2:14 Do all things without murmurings and disputings:
Phi 2:15 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst
    of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;

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