Wait on the LORD: be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart;
wait, I say, on the LORD.
- Psalm 27:14
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1 Kings 17:1-16 Jehovah Jireh: The One who Provides.
There are many stories of God's children who lived before us in the years gone by, and through whose accounts of their lives we are given hope, inspiration and direction for our lives. In these challenging economic times, it is good to remember that our provider is our faithful God, and not ourselves or our government Elijah, who had a nature just like us, lived in a very evil time in which he was told by the LORD God to tell the king that there was going to be a drought. This drought was not just some coincidence, but it was placed upon the nation which was led by King Ahab because of their departure from the ways of the LORD and into their own sinful ways. The drought was a judgment of mercy, which was intended to bring those He had created back to Him.

Having relayed the message, Elijah then was told to go live in an area that was in midst of the drought, where he would be provided for through a brook that he was near and through ravens that would bring his bread and flesh in the morning and in the evening. He was provided for by the LORD for some time, but soon the effects of the lack of rain began to cause the water flow to slow down and then to dry up. Elijah, being like one of us, must have been wondering what was going to happen to him as he saw the stream flow slow day by day, but yet he did not leave the place where the LORD had told him that He would provide for him.

While he was waiting there, the Word of the LORD came to him, telling him to go to Zarephath and there, a widow woman whom the LORD had instructed, would sustain him. As Elijah came to the city gate, he saw the widow woman there, gathering sticks so the she could prepare her and hers son's final meal. Elijah, believing and trusting in the Provider, called upon her to first serve his needs and then take care of her and her son's needs, telling her of the promise of the LORD: The jar of meal shall not be exhausted, the jug of oil shall not be empty, until the day that the LORD sends rain upon the earth. She believed the word of the LORD as spoken through Elijah,: and she, and he, and her house did eat many days. And the jar of meal, and the jug of oil did not become empty, according to the Word of the LORD, which He spake by Elijah.

As we note the references to the Word of the LORD in verses 1, 2, 5, 8, 12, 14, and 16, may we be reminded that the LORD has taken care of us up to this day, is taking care of us today and will take care of our future. Elijah not only spoke the Word of the LORD, but he also obeyed the Word of the LORD concerning his own life and provision. He not only brought blessing to himself through his obedience, but he also brought blessing and provision to others. As we meditate on this story of the ways of the LORD, may the Holy Spirit minister to us faith, trust and obedience toward our Provider, Jehovah Jireh.

In Christ's love,

Pastor Orval
Posted on 02 Aug 2011 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala
Not Yet, But Eventually! 7/24/2011
In the Name of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, we approach the final portion of chapter 8 of Apostle Paul's letter to the Romans. This chapter is like the Mount Everest of this particular letter, as it closes with the emphatic statement of faith by our beloved brother in Christ, "For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." 8:38-39 It is like an orchestra has been playing various selections, slowly but methodically working towards the final part of the program, with the richness of the meaning of the selections working together to build to the climax and high point of the program.

Remembering where we left off in last weeks meditation, we might ask ourselves: How did Paul get from describing the groanings of the creation as it awaits its renewal, our groanings as we await our ultimate adoption, i.e. the redemption of our bodies, to being persuaded that nothing is able to separate him from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus? What caused the transition from groaning inwardly, howbeit in hope, to him being persuaded of the faithfulness of God?

Our text of meditation is verses 26-39. Here are the verses:

26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. {because: or, that}
28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth.
34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

After writing of the groanings of the creation awaiting its deliverance, of our groanings awaiting our deliverance, we now see another groaning that is referred to: The groanings of the Holy Spirit as He intercedes for us. We note that the first significant mention of the Holy Spirit came in Romans 5:5, when Paul wrote, "And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us."

The next mention is Romans 7:6 "But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter." Not until the beginning of the chapter of which we are currently meditating upon, Romans 8, does he begin to unpack the significance and meaning of the Holy Spirit and His relationship to us as His indwelt people. Being led by the Spirit of God means that we are the sons of God, (8:14), for it is a Spirit of adoption and not of bondage, and a Spirit that causes us to cry, Abba, Father.

We know that we belong to our Heavenly Father, He loves us, cares for us, has our best (eternal) interests in mind and, therefore, we live in this knowledge and experience of belonging. We are loved. Perhaps nothing is more destructive and hindering to our understanding that God loves us than to have been unloved or ungraced by those in authority over us in our developing years. It can cause us to look for love that we did not receive. He then goes onto to say, "For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us".(8:18), which then leads to a discussion which concerns real life: He points to the groanings that are experienced by the creations; the earth and ourselves. For there is always the tension between that which God says is true and that which we believe, know and experience. That is because we yet live in the "not yet."


He then explains concerning the intercessory assistance of the Holy Spirit, for He is not only an earnest (guarantee,promise) of our inheritance, He is not only a testifier between our Father and ourselves of our inclusion in His family, the body of Christ, but He also is an active part of our every day life through intercessory prayer on our behalf "with groanings that cannot be verbalized."

"Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God." 8:26-27

Out of sync.
We understand all of this, as we age, for no one needs to tell us that we are feeling the effects of this decaying process. We are subject to this, and we are awaiting the day when all will be restored to its completeness. We live in the "not yet." We are waiting for the buying back of our body, the adoption. We are living in hope, for we do not yet see it. For if we could see it, it would not be hope. We live in this reality since when we get up in the morning, we feel tired, we do not bounce back, we get sick, so it is no mystery for us. We feel that we are out of sync concerning our existence, and it is our hope the one day it will be put into sync to what it once was.

Therefore, with patience we wait for it, for it is promised to us and it is a matter of time until we see it. We are like the old transmission of years ago, when there was no synchronized gears, and one had to do various things in order to make the gears mesh. In today's world, we now have synchronized transmissions. That is what it will be like when we leave the "not yet" to the perfect world.

We all know the unrest that can come upon us, the feelings of uncertainty, and which root cause is due to the brokenness that came upon us as a result of our fall out of relationship with our Creater and Father. Even though we have been restored through Christ, yet in our humanness, we often feel lost, we get sick, we have disappointment of all sorts, and we often are grasping for meaning and purpose in life. And too often we look away from God, for this fulfilment in places that do not fulfill, forgetting that we are loved by God, we are united with HIm in His Son and that ultimately to know and experience His love and joy in us brings peace and harmony to all our relationships.

A famous quote by Augustine: "Lord, you have made us for yourself and our hearts are restless until we find our rest in you."

I was reading the testimony of a person who had been seeking meaning and purpose for her existence, and after many years this person had this to say through a poem. She said,
Love has always been there in the chaos of this world...
It is God's love that turns that chaos into joy...
So Love went on reaching
And Love went on longing
Right past the shackles of my mind;
And the Love of the Father became Mary's little Son
And His love reached all the way to where I was. *
So instead of searching for love, I have learned to receive it from Him, and in being able to receive it, I can say, The Lord is my shepherd, He is everything that I need or could want.


We would like to have it all layed out in front of us, and when we are depressed and despondent, the Spirit helps us in our weaknesses. When we are not able to even know what to pray for as we should, the Holy Spirit approaches God with requests and petitions that cannot be put into words. God the Father and God the Spirit work in unison in this manner. Here we see that our ability to live in this world is dependent upon the Holy Spirit. We really do not know what is good or best for us, but the Holy Spirit communes with God through us and in us, bringing to fruition that which He wants because He is in us.

II. All Things are Working For Us From God

28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.


This does not mean that everything that we do or experience works out to our good, but it does mean that all things that God has done work together for the good to them that love God, to them who have come to see things Gods way. All that God has created work together for that which is good, but necessarily from our point of view. It is from God's point of view that He has done this, and for all who have come to this understanding and experience, this is applicable.

Foreknew, Predestined, Called, Justified, Glorified,

Ephesian 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.


Since this portion of the Scripture is often used in the discussion of election, here I will place a few thoughts as to how I view this. Elect means chosen.

God has not ordained anyone for eternal destruction, but has chosen all in Christ Jesus.

KJV 1 Thessalonians 5:9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,

This election is on God's part, it is in Jesus Christ, is based upon mercy, upon grace and it is through faith. If one believes, one is elect. If one does not believe, they are not elect.

Illustration: A door on which is written here in time, which is the invitaiton to partake of that which God has given the world, from Revelation 22:16

KJV Revelation 22:16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.
KJV Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

In eternity, the same door will have on it these words:
Ephesians 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: {places: or, things}
4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.


God has foreknown: It has always been His plan to bring together His restored people into the image of His Son, who was the firstborn of the sons into the adoption of sonship, those who he has called, he also justified them as well as glorified them. If He has done all this, what is left for us to do but praise Him!

If He has done all this, who could be against us? God restored all of this for us and all of creation exists to serve God and to serve man. Christianity never speaks ill of that which God has created, but it remains good and continues to be good. God has never changed His mind about that which He created and yet calls good.



III. Our Expected End Since God Is For Us, With Us and In Us.
This history of Redemption can be outlined with three short sentences and this outline seems to be in these last three sentences: God is for us, He is with us, and He is in Us. Consider in addition, these three references from Scripture:

He is for us.
1 Peter 1:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
20 Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

He is with us.
Matthew 1:22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

He is in us.
John 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

31 What shall we then say to these things? He is For Us. If God be for us, who can be against us?
32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth.

34 Who is he that condemneth? He is With Us. It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.


35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
This quote is from: Psalm 44:22

37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
What does it mean to be more than a victor? It means that someone else has fought and won the battle for us. We are saved by grace through faith and no other way.

38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

The emphatic answer that is given is that nothing shall be able to cause a separation between us and Christ. This whole thing is about the restoration of the creation by God, it has been done by God, He has put it in front of us, and therefore, Paul emphatically declares that which God has done, saying that nothing shall separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus. This is demonstrated by that which God did in Christ Jesus.

God bought us back through His Son, He came into existence here on earth to show this reality, and after the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit was sent to indwell all those who come to the understanding that we are saved by grace through faith. This is what is real, but we still live in the "not yet", which means that we are awaiting a brighter and more glorious day. It is a day that when it dawns will be the brightest sunrise that one could ever hope to see, for there faith will be turned to sight, to the fullness of understanding of what it means to be loved, and we will not ever again seek to look for ways to find relationship on our terms. We yet are living in the "not yet".

I remember those words which were spoken by the late Georgo Saukkola' wife as she sat by his bedside as he was drifting from the "not yet" to his attainment for that which he had lived in hope: Eternal Glory. As she sat there, I asked her if she would like to join him in glory, and she said, "It is not yet time." She understood in part the 'not yet,", we understand in part the "not yet."

Both Apostle John and Apostle Paul wrote very clearly the concept of the "not yet", as is illustrated in their epistles. John wrote of the day in which we yet live, saying, "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."1 John 3:1-2

Paul wrote: "For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:9-12

As think on the contrast between what God says about us and our thoughts of ourselves, may the truth of this Word create faith in our hearts that will strongly lay hold on that which God says concerning us. May we be persuaded and assured this day that the promises of God are for us, the elect in Christ, so that we will continue to live in hope of the future glory in heaven. Above all, may we rest in complete confidence of the faithfulness of our Great God who has done all things good for our eternal benefit.

In the Oneness in Christ,

Pastor Orval Wirkkala




Posted on 24 Jul 2011 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala

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1 Kings 17:1-16 Jehovah Jireh: The One who Provides.
- Posted by Pastor Orval Wirkkala


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