Posts Tagged ‘Christ Jesus’

My Assurance is Being “In Christ Jesus-2

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The very foundation of Salvation is grounded in the realization that God’s unmerited love toward us is greater than any other power– Including death!!    Romans 8:38-39, Ephesians 3:14-21

 

Can you  without any hesitation say that you experience Eternal Salvation right now? Do you have full assurance that Jesus has saved you and He is continuing to save you? If today were your last moments to live  can you say without pause and with complete assurance that you are saved?

The Bible teaches us that we have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.      Psa 31:14-16 Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. “This is life eternal that they might know you the only true God and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” (John 17:3). When we “know” God as Jesus revealed Him to be and trust Him, then we have confidence, faith, or trust in Jesus’ ability to “save” (salvage) us! Our assurance or confidence is in our Savior (just like the thief on the Cross) not in a legal payment. Thus we can have complete assurance that we have Salvation NOW!!!! Praise God!!!!!1 John 5:11-13

We have Assurance that we don’t have to save ourselves.

We have made salvation woefully complicated.  We have brought our own ideas and opinions to the discussion.  When I choose to trust Jesus with my Life, then Jesus and Jesus alone will save me!  He is my Savior.  “In Christ,” Jesus wants us to sit down and enjoy what He has already done for us.  We are not to try to work at attaining these blessings.  I can’t add anything to the equation of Salvation no matter what I do.  “He who glories, let him glory in the Lord.”  Once we trust Jesus with our lives, He freely gives us all things which are bestowed “through Christ” and His Cross.                    1 Corinthians 1:30-31.  Luke 2:10-11.  Hebrews 4:1-8.

Jesus wants us to enjoy Salvation now!!

We have “Assurance that Jesus alone is reconciling us to Him”. 

Now all thing are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.”  2 Corinthians 5:18-19.  Jesus wants to heal us completely from the virus of sin.  Reconciliation is a change from enmity to friendship and is brought about my God alone.  “In Christ” we become a new creation.  This is possible only through the compelling love of Jesus.  He will draw us to Him with an everlasting love.  His transforming, reconciling love is through His Holy Spirit.  2 Corinthians 3:18.  Are you baptized by the Holy Spirit?  John 1:29, 33,  Luke 3:16,  Acts 1:5,2; 1-4,  Ephesians 5:18, 6:18,  Luke 11:13,  Galatians 5:22-23.

 

The truth is that Jesus wants to literally live out His life in us giving us His victory:  This is “being in Christ Jesus”.  Colossians 1:27.

 

We have Assurance that Jesus is writing “His laws” (plural) in our minds.

Yes, laws, plural.  His laws of love and liberty.  By completely healing us,  Jesus will remove selfishness from our minds and will restore in us the living law of love and liberty.  Praise God:  Hebrews 8:10, 10:16, 2 Corinthians 5:17.  (More on the concepts about the laws of love and liberty in future studies)

 

When we are “in Christ Jesus”  He will manifest Himself in and through us. 

It’s Christ alone who heals us!  It’s Christ alone who restores His image in us!  This is why there is no fear, anxiety, worry or burden abiding “in Christ Jesus”.  It’s all about Jesus.  We simply allow Him to do these things in and through us by The Holy Spirit.  Romans 8:1-5, 11.

  We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!!  Psa 31:14-15, 1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

Yes Jesus Loves Me The Bible Tells Me So—Christ’s Assurance of Salvation

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       We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!!  1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

 

 

 

 

The Bible Tells Me So

     Children sing “Jesus loves me, this I know. . .” Then we become adults, and our tune changes.  We lose our childlike confidence and change the lyrics to “Jesus loves me?  I don’t know.”  Why the doubt?  Why the sense of dread and foreboding when we contemplate our readiness for Christ’s return?  Is the Christian entitled to the assurance of salvation?  Can we know for sure that we are saved?

 

I believe that it is the privilege of every born-again child of God to possess “the firm assurance of personal salvation here and now!”

 

Christ’s Assurance of Salvation

 

God alone can give us absolute assurance of salvation.  Jesus, the Son of God, brought the comforting news that the Father accepts everyone who comes to Jesus and believes in Him.  He said:

 

“All that the father gives me will come to me, and whoever

comes to me I will never drive away.  For I have come down

from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who

sent me.  And this is the will of him who sent me, that I

shall lose none of all that he has given me, but raise them

up at the last day.  For my Father’s will is that everyone who

looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life,

and I will raise him up at the last day:  John 6:37-40.

 Jesus Wants To Save You No Matter What Your Past Has Been!!!

God the Father and the Son are perfectly one in their will and acts to save believers from evil and death and even from themselves.  The reassuring news is that God has taken the initiative for our redemption.  He did not wait till we asked for help.  As the Father drew Israel with His everlasting loving kindness (see Jeremiah. 31:3), so He now draws all people and enables them to come to Jesus (see John 6:44, 65).  Jesus likewise promised: “But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself”  John 12:32.  He draws them each time the gospel of the crucified and risen Savior is proclaimed. So, all the glory and honor due those who have provided salvation belong to the divine Father and Son.  No one obtains salvation because of personal achievement or merit.  From start to finish it is the gift of the gracious God—as Paul said: “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”  Rom. 6:23.

 

We owe everything to grace, free grace, sovereign grace.  Grace in the covenant ordained our adoption.  Grace in the savior effected our redemption, our regeneration, and our adoption to heirship with Christ.  Let this grace be revealed to others.

We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!! 1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

What If I Have Grieved The Holy Spirit–What Next?

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I will make them and the places all around My hill a blessing; and I will cause showers to come down in their season; there shall be showers of blessing. Ezekiel 34:26

 

 

Please Explore Pastor Dennis Smith’s Website

 

There are things we can do that will grieve the Spirit.  If we do not daily seek Him and cooperate in following where He leads us, our Christian experience will weaken.

God doesn’t force.  When we receive the baptism of the Spirit, He will have a greater impact in our life.  We will feel His prompting more strongly.  He will be daily putting the desire in our heart to obey God.  He will call us to study God’s Word and to pray more.  The Spirit will cause us to begin loving righteousness and hating sin.  However, we are always free to disregard His prompting.  When we do this we begin the process of “grieving,” or “quenching,” the Spirit.  Paul gives practical advice in many portions of Scripture on how to avoid doing this.  These practical counsels to the believer on living the Christian life are intended to help us maintain the fullness of the Spirit in our lives.  Two examples of such counsel are found in the following Bible verses:

“And that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in righteousness and true holiness.  Therefore, putting away lying, each one speak truth with his neighbor, for we are members of one another.  ‘Be angry, and do not sin’: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil.  Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.  Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.  And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.  Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.  And be kind to one another, tenderhearted forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (Eph. 4:24-32).

“Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all.  See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all.  Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.  Do not quench the Spirit” (1 Thess. 5:14-19).

Paul knew that the Spirit of God dwelling in believers would be prompting them to do the things listed in these verses.  If we refuse to yield to His prompting, though, we will be in danger of grieving and quenching the Spirit.

If you find that you have grieved the Spirit, don’t become discouraged!  Ask God to forgive you, and He will (1 John 1:9).  Then ask God in faith to fill you anew with His Spirit, and He will do that, too (Luke 11:13).

David knew God’s mercy.  He had committed the sins of adultery and murder.  He had walked away from the prompting of God’s Spirit in his life when he committed these terrible acts.  Yet when he was convicted of his sin by the Spirit, he turned to God in prayer.  Note especially these words:

“Hide Your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.  Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.  Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.  Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me with Your generous Spirit” (Ps. 51:9-12).

When we find that we’ve been slipping away from God we must not let another moment go by without confessing our sin, accepting God’s forgiveness, and claiming the promise of the renewing of the Spirit in our lives just as David did.  Then we will be strengthened once again in the “inner” man to be victorious over Satan:

“That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height – to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God” (Eph. 3:16-19).

We serve a wonderful God.  When we have failed Him, let us remember:

“The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in mercy.  He will not always strive with us, nor will He keep His anger forever.  He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities.  For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.  As a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him” (Ps. 103:8-13).

At Once, Man and God

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Boats_0247

 

 

 

Christ—at once, man and God.  Colossians 2:9 says, “For in Christ there is all of God in a human body.” Jesus was not a godlike man, nor a manlike God.  He was God-man. What do we do with such a person? One thing is certain, we can’t ignore Him.  He is the single most significant person who ever lived. Forget MVP; He is the entire league. The head of the parade?  Hardly.  No one else shares the street.

 

 

Dismiss Him?  We can’t.  Resist Him?  Equally difficult.

 

 

Don’t we need a God-man Savior? A just-God Jesus could make us but not understand us.  A just-man Jesus could love us but never save us. But a God-man Jesus? Near enough to touch.  Strong enough to trust.  A Savior found by millions to be irresistible.

 

 

As the Apostle Paul says in Philippians 3:8, nothing compares to “the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.”

 

God’s Commandments and Abiding in Christ

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Thanks Dick Duerksen

 

For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh,  in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.   Romans 8:3-4

 

Please Visit Pastor Dennis Smith’s Great Web Site

 

Obedience to God’s commandments and abiding in Christ go hand-in-hand.  You cannot have one without the other.  Jesus said:

 

“If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.  John 15:10

 

When we abide in Christ and He abides in us the Ten Commandments will become an integral part of our life.  Jesus and God’s law are inseparable.  In fact it was Jesus before His incarnation Who gave Moses the Ten Commandments.  The God who gave the commandments revealed Himself to Moses as the “I AM”, (Exodus 3:14).  Jesus claimed to be the “I AM” of the Old Testament, (John 8:58).  Comparing 1Corinthians 10:1-4 and Nehemiah 9:12-14, it is very clear that it was Jesus who came down in the cloud on Mt. Sinai and met with Moses.

The Holy Spirit was also very much involved when God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses. In fact, it was the Spirit Who wrote the commandments on the tables of stone. This becomes clear when we compare Jesus’ statements where He equated the “finger of God” with the “Spirit of God” (Matthew 12:28, Luke 11:20).  Hence, the same Holy Spirit Who wrote the Ten Commandments on tables of stone will today write God’s law on the heart of God’s Spirit filled children (2Corinthians 3:3).  This is God’s new covenant promise to the believer (Hebrews 8:10).

 

Jesus Magnified the Law

 

Isaiah foretold that the Messiah would magnify the law, (Isaiah 42:21).  Jesus lived the law of God out in His life.  He clearly stated His purpose was to fulfill the righteous requirements of the law, not destroy or do away with it, (Matthew 5:17).

In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus magnified many aspects of God’s law.  He clarified the requirements of the commandments by revealing their deeper applications.  For example, He equated lustful thoughts with the commandment not to commit adultery and revengeful anger with the commandment not to kill Matthew 5:21-22, 27-28).

 

Christ Lives out Love

 

When Christ lives in us He will seek to live out His life in and through us.   This means that He will seek to live out the Ten Commandments in our life just as He did when He walked this earth (Psalm 40:8).

Also, the Ten Commandments are in-separately connected to love.  The first four reveal to us how we love God, and the last six tell us how we are to love our fellow man.  Hence, Christ abiding in us, the Ten Commandments, and intimately knowing Jesus are all closely related.  You cannot have one without the others.  John wrote of this close connection in his first letter.

 

“And hereby we do know that we know him if we keep his commandments.  He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.  But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.  He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.” 1John 2:3-6

 

John clearly links intimately knowing Jesus, the Ten Commandments, love and abiding in him.  He says that if we are abiding in Christ we will be “walking” or living as He lived.  Why, because Jesus will be living out His life in us.

Paul tells us in his letter to the Ephesians the purpose of our calling in Christ.

 

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10

 

If we resist Jesus seeking to live out the Ten Commandments in our life we are not abiding in Him, and failing to fulfill the purpose of our calling; to do “good works.”  These works are works of faith, which happen by allowing Jesus to manifest them in and through us.  When we are experiencing the “law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” we are becoming free from the “law of sin and death” (Romans 8:2).  When we “walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” the “righteousness of the law” will be “fulfilled in us” (Romans 8:4).  Obedience to God’s law will be revealed throughout our life in thought, word and deed.  Our love for God and our fellow man will grow stronger and stronger, and “love is the fulfilling of the law” (Romans 13:10).  Ellen White describes this in the following statement.

 

“Love to man is the earthward manifestation of the love of God. It was to implant this love, to make us children of one family, that the King of glory became one with us. And when His parting words are fulfilled, ‘Love one another, as I have loved you’ (John 15:12); when we love the world as He has loved it, then for us His mission is accomplished. We are fitted for heaven; for we have heaven in our hearts.” Desire of Ages, p. 641

 

The Bible tells us that God is love, and who ever does not love does not know God (1John 4:8).  Here we learn that love is central to everything in the Christian’s life.  Why; because if God is truly abiding in the Christian love will be present.  Love will permeate every aspect of his life; his thoughts, words and deeds.  This happens only as the believer is daily filled with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18, Romans 5:5). When the Holy Spirit is present the fruit of the Spirit will be present (Galatians 5:22-23).  The first fruit listed is love.  The other fruit will be present to the degree love is present.  The more of the love of God the Christian has in his heart the more joy, peace, faith, etc he will have.

When we are abiding in Christ and He is abiding in us He will manifest His love, His joy, His peace (John 15:11; 14:27).  Knowing this truth it becomes clear how futile it is to try to lovingly obey God by our own efforts.  Only as Jesus is literally living in us, and manifesting His love in and through us will true loving obedience take place in our life.

Obeying the Ten Commandments is central to God’s love being manifested in and through us.  When Jesus walked this earth he obeyed God’s Ten Commandments perfectly.  When He lives in the Christian He will seek to manifest obedience to God’s commandments in the believer’s life.  That is why Jesus said:

 

“If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love;..” John 15:10

Righteousness by Faith

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The very foundation of Salvation is grounded in the realization that God’s unmerited love toward us is greater than any other power including death.  Romans 8:35-39  Ephesians 3:14-21

 

 

Pastor Dennis Smith

Righteousness by Faith

 Righteousness by faith is simply looking to Jesus to manifest His righteous life of victory in our life.  God wants us to look to Christ for victory, not to ourselves:

 

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Heb. 12:1, 2).

 

This is true righteousness by faith and is God’s will for every Christian.  Oswald Chambers, a well-known Christian author, clearly presented this wonderful truth in the July 23 reading of his daily devotional, My Utmost for His Highest:

 

“But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us . . . sanctification” (1 Cor. 1:30).

 The Life Side

The most wonderful secret of living a holy life does not lie in imitating Jesus, but in letting the perfect qualities of Jesus exhibit themselves in my human flesh.  Sanctification is ‘Christ in you . . . ‘ (Col. 1:27).  It is His wonderful life that is imparted to me in sanctification – imparted by faith as a sovereign gift of God’s grace.  Am I willing for God to make sanctification as real in me as it is in His Word?

 

“Sanctification means the impartation of the holy qualities of Jesus Christ to me.  It is the gift of His patience, love, holiness, faith, purity, and godliness that is exhibited in and through every sanctified soul.  Sanctification is not drawing from Jesus the power to be holy – it is from Jesus the very holiness that was exhibited in Him, and that He now exhibits in me.  Sanctification is an impartation, not an imitation.  Imitation is something altogether different.  The perfection of everything is in Jesus Christ, and the mystery of sanctification is that all the perfect qualities of Jesus are at my disposal.  Consequently, I slowly but surely begin to live a life of inexpressible order, soundness, and holiness –‘ . . . kept by the power of God . . . ‘ (1 Peter 1:5).”

 

Do you see the beauty of this truth?  Our part is to look to Jesus in trusting faith, believing God’s promise to manifest Christ and His righteousness in us.  Our only part is to choose to let this happen and believe it will happen.  When unrighteous desire and temptations come, we are not to fight against them.  We are to turn to Christ and to ask Him to manifest His own righteousness (Heb. 12: 1, 2).  Then we are to wait in faith, believing He will do it.

 

Then when Jesus returns we will be able to stand in the very presence of Christ in all His glory and not be consumed.  This is God’s promise to His children, and it will be fulfilled as we learn to look to Jesus in faith for this marvelous manifestation of Himself in us:

 

“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy” (Jude 24).

 

The Faith Struggle

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We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

 

 

Please Visit Pastor Dennis Smith’s Website!!

 

Jesus Is Most Precious

 

When we understand this aspect of righteous by faith, the abiding in Christ aspect of sanctification and obedience, Jesus will become even more precious to us.  His victory in the flesh becomes our victory over temptation when we by faith ask Him to live out His victory in us.  When tempted we must learn to immediately turn to Christ, and let Him manifest His obedience in and through us over what ever temptation we are facing.

Our victory has already been obtained by Christ 2000 years ago.  That is why He became a man and lived a perfectly obedient life overcoming all temptation (Hebrews 4:15, 1Peter 2:21-22).  By faith in Christ we have His justifying righteousness covering us.  By faith in Christ we have His sanctifying righteous obedience lived out in and through us.  These are two precious aspects of righteousness by faith.  Both are Christ’s righteousness.  His justifying righteousness is imputed to us.  His sanctifying righteousness is imparted to us.  We receive both by faith.  When we understand these two aspects of righteousness by faith we will see that it is Jesus from beginning to end in our Christian experience.  Then all man’s boasting will be laid in the dust.

 

This is why the apostle Paul wrote:

 

“That no flesh should glory in his presence.  But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.” 1Corinthians 1:29-31

 

You see, we are to receive everything from Christ just as the branch receives everything it needs from the vine.  Christ is to be our wisdom, our righteousness, our sanctification and our redemption. If we stay continually connected to Him through the baptism of the Holy Spirit, daily feeding on His Word, and moment-by-moment prayer we will receive these blessings from Him; not by working to receive them, but by believing we have them.

 

“For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” 1John 5:4

 

Jesus paid it all.  Jesus did it all.  Our part is to simply believe.  When we experience the righteousness that comes by faith then all the glory goes to Christ and none to ourselves.  That is why in God’s kingdom all crowns will be cast at Jesus’ feet.

 

 The Faith Struggle

 

In order to experience continual, unbroken abiding in Christ and Christ abiding in us there must be continual 100% surrender to God’s will.  God may lead you into an experience where this is not easy.  The challenge may seem too difficult.  At such times it is important to remember that you are in the situation by God’s leading.

 

Christ’s Example

 

Christ’s experience in the Garden of Gethsemane after sharing the Passover with His disciples and instituting the communion service was such an occasion.  Throughout His life Christ had obeyed His heavenly Father implicitly by allowing the Father to manifest Himself through Him.  John wrote of Jesus:

 

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” John 1:14

 

Jesus allowed the Father to manifest His glory throughout His life.  He had never turned away from following the truth of God’s Word or the way the Father led Him.  Now in the garden He faced the most difficult challenge of following the Father’s will.  Three times He prayed that the “cup” of suffering be taken from Him and each time He yielded to the will of the Father (Matthew 26:39-44).

The Father understood the struggle Jesus was going through, but He could not remove it.   It was all in His divine will for the events to transpire.  Jesus knew He was being led by His Father.  The will of His Father was clear to Him.  Therefore, He willingly submitted even though the submission was very difficult at that moment.

In prayer Christ gained the victory over the crisis of the cross He was facing.  Once the victory was gained in prayer His obedience unto death was assured.

When we face such times of crisis under God’s leading it is essential we follow Christ’s example.   In prayer we will find the strength and courage to move forward in faith as we continue to abide in Christ knowing that He will see us through, and will manifest Himself in and through us all the way to victory.

What Is The Gospel Mentioned In Revelation 14:6?—The Simple Truth! A Brief Bible Study

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We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!!  1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

 

  And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 1 John 4:16 NIV

 

Then I saw another angel flying directly overhead, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those who dwell on earth, to every nation and tribe and language and people.       Revelation 14:6

The Gospel Is A Living Demonstration Of God’s Steadfast Love— An Everlasting Love That Holds Me Together And Saves Me!!

 And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her Seed;
He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel.” Genesis 3:15

 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;  Isaiah 61:1

 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. Luke 2:10-11

It is very interesting to note that in both Isaiah 61:1 (From The LXX which is the official translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek) and in Luke 2:10-11 the Greek word for Good News is Gospel! (euaggelizo).

The Power Of God’s Love!

For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son… John 3:16

And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. Colossians 1:17 NIV

For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died;  2Corinthians 5:14

When I thought, “My foot slips,”
your steadfast love, O LORD, held me up. Psalm 94:18

The Gospel Is The Creative Power of God To Save Us!

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ,for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. Romans 1:16, 20, John 3:16, 1 Corinthians 1:24, 18, 2 Timothy 1:8-12

Jesus Is The Gospel!

Christ is the power of God 1Corinthians 1:23-24. Therefore Jesus is the Gospel! And Christ’s Salvation comes through the cross. Mark 1:15, 1Corinthains 1:18

The Gospel is a Mystery Now Revealed!

To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Jesus is “The Only Way” John 14:6 Colossians 1:27, Ephesians 3:3-7, Romans 8:3-4, 11

The Gospel is Christ dwelling inside us and the preaching of the Gospel is making known to others of the possibility of Christ dwelling inside of them! It’s by Faith alone In Jesus that accomplishes this awesome reality!   Ephesians 2:8-9

How does Christ dwell inside us?

Jesus lives inside us through the Holy Spirit. John 16:13, John 14:17 Romans 8:8-11, John 14:16-18, John 16:7, John 17:20-26, Galatians 5:22,23, Revelation 3:20

When I invite Jesus to dwell inside me, He then transforms me into His likeness 1John 3:1-3. He literally lives out His life of victory inside us. Romans 8.:3-4, 8-11,Romans 5:10. All of this is accomplished in me because God is love. 1John 4:8, Jeremiah 31:3, 1Thessalonians 5:23-24, 1Corinthians 1:29,30, Galatians 5:22-23

It is all Christ and nothing that we “do” in the area of putting forth effort.  We simply believe what God says. Praise God we don’t have to save ourselves. Matthew 1:21, John 3:16-17, 2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 3:3-8

And what is my part? Simply to choose Jesus and trust Him with my life! This requires 100 percent surrender to Jesus 100 percent of the time!                       And that’s it!!  John 3:16, Galatians 2:20

For Future Study: What Is Sanctification?

 

 

 

 

Jesus Is About To Come!! Revelation 22:20

    We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!!  1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

Are You On A Weed Hunt?

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God’s love sprouts around us like lilacs, but we go on weed hunts!  How many flowers do we miss in the process? If you look long enough, you’ll find something to bellyache about.  So quit looking!

Lift your eyes off the weeds.  Collect your blessings.  Catalog His kindnesses.  Assemble your reasons for gratitude.  “Always be joyful” is what Paul tells us in

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18: “Pray continually and give thanks, whatever happens.  This is what God wants for you in Christ Jesus.”

Gratitude is always an option.  Make it your default emotion and you’ll find yourself giving thanks for the problems of life.  Who knows what you might record in your journal:

Mondays.  Oh boy–my favorite!

Final exams.  I can hardly wait!

“Impossible,” you say?  How do you know?

How do you know until you give the day a chance?  Thank God!

 

Mother’s Day and Mixed Emotions

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Post By April Motl

 

Mother’s day is today and for many the day is full of joy and celebration.  Still, there are those who might have a few mixed emotions on this holiday.  The idyllic imagery of motherhood often doesn’t match up with the reality of life — the reality that the relationships involved with motherhood are often far more complicated than we would wish.

The sting of emptiness.  Mother’s day can be hard for those without children, those who have birthed children but the children have since been adopted, those who have buried their children and those who have experienced abortion.  The emptiness can sting our hearts as we watch happy families celebrating their beloved mommies, and we feel painfully left out. We can journey into the dark hallway of “why me?”

While it may sound simplistic, God fills empty places.  I have personally watched Him reach through holes in my life to touch others with hope and healing.  And I have seen Him put broken pieces back together in ways that simply took my breath away.  He sees your hurt and He cares. (1 Peter 5:7, Psalm 145:16, Isaiah 54:1)

Mistakes Made.  Then there are those who are mothers, but perhaps have not been able to embrace the task with excellence.  Sometimes life’s circumstances and baggage pull women’s hearts in ways that make them unable to give love, attention or care to their little ones.

God’s mercies are new every morning! Ask God and your family for forgiveness. Then walk in the Lord’s grace. Don’t be afraid to ask for help in your high calling as a mom. Find someone who can mentor and encourage you as you seek to remedy your past mistakes. (Lamentations 3:22-23, James 5:16, Titus 2:3-5)

The sorrow over estranged or rebellious children.  Many parents struggle under the heaviness of heart that accompanies children who have gone astray.  I have watched women who have been successful in every other area of life become utterly paralyzed with grief because of a grown child’s drug addiction, abandonment of their family or other hurtful choices.  A mom recently told me that after her son had an affair and consequently divorced his wife, she felt as if he had been unfaithful to her as well and the entire family, not just his wife.

Many grandparents are raising their grandkids because their own children have been unable to do so.  My husband and I are deeply grateful for the ways our grandparents stepped in to fill in the gap for our parents.  And while there is great good that come from such a situation, it isn’t without grief for those grandparents who long to see their own children making healthy choices.

In these situations, remember: God is sovereign. He turns the hearts of kings, so keep praying! Know that the Lord understands your sorrow because He has watched with grief as His children rebelled against Him. Nothing is too hard for Him, so hang onto hope that your children will one day walk with their Lord. After all, if you aren’t praying and believing for them, who is? (Proverbs 21:1, Isaiah 1:2, Jeremiah 32:27)

The sadness over a mother who wasn’t a mom.  I heard a comedian making light of this topic. He was joking about how as a good son you are supposed to get your mom a card for Mother’s Day, but if she really wasn’t much of a mom, how do you find a card that doesn’t rub it in or just straight out lie? While the routine was funny, the reality of it isn’t. I know kids who have been left on street corners by their mom, or dumped with strangers. The pain from abandonment, rejection, and abuse can affect you long into adulthood.

God is big enough for the hurt and disappointment, and His love can heal any mistakes our parents might have made.  These verses have meant a great deal to my heart over the years: Psalm 27:10, Isaiah 49:15-16, Jeremiah 31:3, 2 Corinthians 6:18.

The grief over a mom who has passed away.  Mother’s Day is hard for those who are missing their moms. No one can replace her, and Mother’s Day is a keen reminder of her absence.

Jesus’ response to the grief over the death of a loved one was to cry (John 11:35). He has compassion on our sorrow!  Death wasn’t part of His original design. He doesn’t like it anymore than you do!  He has, however, not left us without hope! We have hope for life in heaven with Him and our family of believers.

Give your grief over to the Lord (Psalm 147:3, Psalm 116:15, 1 Corinthians 15:51-52).  Also, if you are missing your mom, there just might be a mother out there who is grieving over a child.  Pray for the Lord to use you in the midst of your pain — you might be surprised at what He does!

At the end of the day, we have to trust that our loving and sovereign Lord has something for our good and His glory planned for us.  We don’t get to pick our moms, and we don’t get to pick our kids. None of us are perfect, so we are guaranteed to bump into each other a bit. We can choose to be disappointed and bitter with life’s lot, or we can hang on to hope that God is up to something good. We can fall on our knees and ask God to do a new work in us so that we might be godly moms and women from this day forward.

Regardless of our mistakes or the mistakes our moms made, God’s grace is big enough to cover it all — and that is definitely worth celebrating!

April Motl and her husband, Eric, minister at their church in Southern California where he is a pastor on staff.  April is the founder of In His Eyes Ministries; a teaching ministry devoted to helping women see their life from God’s perspective. For more information about the ministry visit www.InHisEyesMinistries.com.

 

The Movement Continues

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I Was Hungry  Matthew 25:35

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The belief of French philosopher Voltaire: The Bible and Christianity would pass within a hundred years. He died in 1778. The movement continues.

The pronouncement of Friedrich Nietzsche in 1882: “God is dead.” The dawn of science, he believed, would be the doom of faith. Science has dawned; the movement continues.

The way a Communist dictionary defined the Bible: “It is a collection of fantastic legends without any scientific support.” Communism is diminishing; the movement continues.

The discovery made by every person who has tried to bury the faith: The same as the one made by those who tried to bury its Founder: He won’t stay in the tomb.

The facts. The movement has never been stronger. Over one billion Catholics and nearly as many Protestants.

The question. How do we explain it? Jesus was a backwater peasant. He never wrote a book, never held an office. He never journeyed more than two hundred miles from his hometown. Friends left him. One betrayed him. Those he helped forgot him. Prior to his death they abandoned him. But after his death they couldn’t resist him. What made the difference?

The answer. His death and resurrection.
For when he died, so did your sin.
And when he rose, so did your hope.
For when he rose, your grave was changed from a final residence to temporary housing.

The reason he did it. The face in your mirror.

The verdict after two millenniums. Herod was right: there is room for only one King.