Monthly Archives: July 2018
When Jesus died on the cross all of our past, and old life was destroyed on the cross. “Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? (Romans 6:3).” “…Christ was raised from the dead…(Romans 6:4)” What does all that mean? It, means that in Christ we have become a new person. It uses the metaphor of death and being baptized into his death to represent a death to our sinful desires and a “born again” soul that it being shaped into the image of the Creator; God. The Bible and Romans 6 in particular teaches that we should not allow sin to “rule over us”, Christ is our God and Master. We are fully made new in Christ, we have put off our old self and been “…Born again…(John 3:3).” By, keeping God’s commands we show that we love Him as Jesus put it, “If ye love me, keep my commandments. (John 14:15).” That then means we are not, “…under law but under grace…(Romans 6:15).” We, see that we are not judged by the law of God, we are free in Him. Does this give us a license to sin? The Bible says, “…By no means!,..(Romans 6:15)…” There is a fine balance between justification by faith and good works. The moment we put our trust in ourselves rather than God we have given ourselves over to our sinful nature. We can not be justified without faith, as the Bible puts it, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. (Hebrews 11:6)” The Bible teaches that we are rewarded for our good works, and that God will not forget them. It teaches that when we put our trust in Christ as the Creator of our faith we are forgiven. When, we do good works God smiles upon us as it is evidence that He is actively working in our lives and that we have surrendered to Him. May, we always remember that the, “…free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23).” Amen.
2 Corinthians 5:20 teaches us that we are ambassadors to Christ, but what does that mean? It means as God has called us, and united us to Him so that “…we might be made the righteousness of God in him…2 Corinthians 5:21” Whether we do good or evil people tend to look at those who say, “I am Christian” as an example of what God or the Christian Church is like. When, we don’t act in a good manner we tend to send a message that all Christian’s are hypocrites which is just what Jesus warned the religious leaders of His day not to be like! While at times when we don’t practice what we believe correctly we might be a hypocrite as believer we should be, “…killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter….” What does that mean? What it is telling us is that we should kill off our old nature that we had before Christ and “die daily (1 Corinthians 15:31)” to it. Jesus taught that, “… If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Matthew 16:24”. Although, we will never get to the place where we are without sin (expect maybe in Heaven), we are found worthy before God through the blood of Christ. Jesus came to earth not only to die for us but to show us how to live. The old law taught, “…An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:…Matthew 5:38″. However, when Christ came the law was fulfilled He was the promised Messiah and he taught us to love one another (Matthew 5:43). Loving your neighbor is often seen that we should let others walk all over us and use us as a doormat, however the Bible teaches, “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. (Matthew 18:15)” Talking to your brother when he has made you angry is part of being “reconciled to God. 2 Corinthians 5:20” “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? 1 John 4:20” So, the Bible teaches both love for one another but also to work out our problems with one another when we do that “…the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us…(Romans 5:5). My hope is that if you don’t know God you will find Him for nothing can “…separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord… (Romans 8:39)” May God be with you. Amen
We can rejoice knowing that God loves us so much that He died and rose from the dead for us (John 3:16). Christ has provided the way and in Him, “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (Romans 8:1).” Jesus “endured the cross (Hebrews 12:2)”, even though He had to take our sin upon His shoulders. Jesus was a just man and God in the flesh, in all fairness He did not deserve to die, but God so loved, you that He gave Himself for you. The best part though is Jesus rose from the dead and through faith we can have a bold confidence that someday we will live with Him forever. Through the grace of God and faith we are “born again (John 3:3)” Jesus is alive in Heaven and “lives forever (1 Peter 1:23).” We must believe and have faith, “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. (Hebrews 11:6)” May we all believe and have faith in Him. Amen
Hebrews 12:2 calls Jesus, “…The author and perfecter of our faith…” It also teaches that Jesus endured the cross and is now seated at the right hand of God. But, what does that mean? It, means that God created our faith, loves us and the reason, “We love him, because he first loved us. (1 John 4:19)” We can have confidence that God loves us, has a plan for us (Jeremiah 29:11), and that God will not abandon us to workout our difficulties on our own (Hebrews 13:5). Before, Jesus left the earth in Matthew 28:20 He promised us that He will be faithful to us both for now and even until He comes again. Through faith our sins have been forgiven because “…he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself…(Hebrews 9:26) We our God’s friend and should rejoice knowing that we will be, “Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls…1 Peter 1:9” “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. Acts 4:12” In these last days God is “…commanding all men everywhere to repent (Acts 17:30)” The bible teaches us that, ” For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance. Romans 11:29″ The Bible asks the question, “… Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? Romans 6:1) then it goes on to answer the question saying, “God forbid…Romans 6:2”. The verse in Romans 11:29 teaches us that we don’t have to be perfect to come to Christ and accept Him as savior we can just come as we are and God will forgive us. It, is only after coming to God will it be easier for us to be aware of our sin and repent. May, we all be diligent in trusting in Him and know Him as He is the only way to be saved. Amen
Matthew 5:13 teaches that believers are to be the “salt of the earth”. But, what does that really mean? The salt of the earth is used as a metaphor for our relationship with God. Just, as salt is a precious resource we are valuable in the eyes of God. Each, one of us is the creation of a God that knows us and loves us and created us for His own purpose (Jer. 29:11). When God asks us to remain salty (Matthew 5:13), He is saying that we ought to be a light (Matthew 5:16), to the world. When, we remain salty we are abounding in God works that glorify God. Jesus also teaches us to “be perfect as your father which is in heaven is perfect”. What an incredibly high standard right? Yes, it is however, the Bible teaches that we are a new creation in Christ. In, the eyes of God through the blood of Christ a believer is seen as “perfect” in Jesus. That does not mean that we are without sin. What it does mean is that perfection is a life long process “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. (Matthew 19:26)”. If, you have just read this and have not put your faith in Christ my hope is you will. Without Christ we are lost and in a state of separation from God. Christ came to bridge the gap between us and God. Let, me say if you act like the salt of the earth yet don’t believe on Jesus then you are lost. There is no good work that can save us apart from the finished work of Christ on the cross and the grace that comes through it. May, God bless you and keep you in His love. Amen.
Genesis 2:17 teaches us that God told Adam, not to eat from the “.. tree of the knowledge of good and evil,…” God tells them they will die, however when they later eat from it we note they don’t physically die rather suffer a spiritual death and separation from God. Adam and Eve had only known good but after eating from the tree they knew how to do evil. Love is a choice so God provided the chance for people to either love and obey Him or disobey. The first humans decided to disobey God and as a result they “sinned”. The sin meant that they spiritually died and were no longer the perfect creation God once made, it also is the reason later they would physically die rather than live forever. However, even though Adam and Eve sinned God had a plan that as through, “Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. (1 Corinthian 15:22).” What does that mean then? It, means that the fall of man did not interfere with God’s plan rather instead it provided a way for people to choose to freely love and obey God or disobey. It gave all creation a chance to enter into Heaven through Jesus Christ. If, mankind would not have sinned they very well would have remained in the garden of Eden forever. The plan of salvation and happiness of God may in fact have been that man would sin, be given the chance to repent (through Christ), then given the chance to die and live with God forever. Whether or not the fall of man was God’s plan it did not stop God’s plan! Sin in the Garden of Eden was defeated when the “…fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,… (Galatians 4:4).” Eternal life is given through the only true God and Jesus Christ who died to save us (John 17:3) through faith in Him. We can all stand before God without blame, without the blemish of sin, and without the fear of eternal death. All it takes to overcome spiritual death (or hell) is a choice and the only way to Heaven is through Jesus Christ. If, we all repent and put our faith in Jesus He saves us. May, we all know eternal life and “…the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent…(John 17:3).” Amen
All those that believe and receive salvation have been “risen with Christ (Col. 3:1)”. But, what does that mean? It means that we have been “born again (John 3:3)”. To be born again means you have received Jesus as the gift from Heaven and Lord of your salvation. You, have trusted in the gift of Christ dying on the cross for your sins (and being raised from the dead). Just as Christ has been raised from the dead through faith we have died to our old nature and “put on Christ Romans 13:14”. When we do this we are not looked upon as going to hell instead, God sees Christ in us and looks at the perfection of Jesus when He sees us rather than our sin. Through faith and trust in Christ we have been forgiven. How great it is to know, we do not stand “condemned – There is no condemnation if we believe in Christ – Romans 8:1”) before the judgement seat of Christ! Rather, instead we know that we will live in Him as long as we keep our faith fully planted in Him!
Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.” John 3:3 (NIV)
But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. Romans 13:14 (KJV)
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Romans 8:1 (KJV)
Acts 1:10-11 teaches us that Jesus after his Resurrection went back up into Heaven. We learn that Jesus will come back down from Heaven just as He had went up into Heaven. He will come again. Jesus will come unexpectedly the Bible uses the metaphor of saying He will come, “Like a thief in the night… 2 Peter 3:10, 1 Th. 5:2” After, He went up into Heaven He left His disciples to witness the gospel. Jesus did not leave His disciples alone, He sent the Holy Spirit to give them the power and ability to preach the Gospel with boldness. Just as Jesus did not forsake His disciples when He left them He promises not to “…Leave or forsake us…” But, what does it mean that He won’t leave us? It means God’s active presence and Holy Spirit is with us as we trust in Him. The Lord Jesus Christ though absence in the body is among us today. Jesus loves us, died and rose from the dead for us.