Sunday, November 04, 2007
An atheist said recently: "All the Bible does is raise unanswerable questions".
Do you suppose he is starting with the wrong first assumption?
All truth flows from our first assumption and postulation, "God is".
The book we have called the Bible or God's Word begins that way.
The first words John wrote in his gospel: "In the beginning was the word and the word was God and the word was with God.", shows that he was in line with Moses whom we suppose wrote the first book. The writer to the Hebrews says in his treatise:
'We must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him'
The Psalmist wrote:" The fool has said in his heart there is no God".
We know that our finite minds cannot possibly answer all the questions life throws at us. But when the basis of our quest is belief and trust in an infinite, almighty and all knowing God, there are no unanswerable questions. We do not know all the answers, but God does, and because He is also a loving and caring God He gives us all the answers we need to know in his Word. John 14:6
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
2 Peter 1:3
According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue.
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. Rom 12:1
- Beseech. This is the strongest plea Paul could make. He used this word in matters of life and death. Obviously he feels that this is one of the most important things anyone could do. It is the only thing that will make him the servant Jesus wants him to be.
- Therefore. This word refers to what was said before Look at Chap.11 Verse 18 Speaking of the Jews who did not believe in Christ: 18 do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast, remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you. 19 You will say then, “Branches were broken off that I might be grafted in.” 20 Well said. Because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, He may not spare you either. 22 Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in His goodness. Otherwise you also will be cut off.
- Mercies. Consider that God provided for our salvation even though we were unworthy sinners, and that it was the free gift of His Son on the cross that won our hearts.
- Bodies. 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. 1Pet. 1. We are not our own but are bought with a price.
- Living. Christ saved us from death and gave us eternal life to use for his glory.
- Sacrifice? Can we really call it a sacrifice when it puts us in line for such favor from God, all the riches and resources of heaven are ours!
- Holy. Who wouldn’t want to be holy if they thought it possible?
- Acceptable to God. This is something we cannot do without!
It is so reasonable!
Monday, July 23, 2007
We must acknowledge that our continuous struggle against temptation, bad attitudes, carnal anger, unforgiving spirit, envy, and pride, is not the way of a Christ honoring life Rom 5: 6You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 8But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
We must realize that through Jesus' death on the cross and His miraculous resurrection, that we are dead to sin and alive to God! Rom6:1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
And it is because of His grace we are empowered to change our ways and become fully obedient to Him.
If we know that we have become "Children of God" and are His dearly beloved ones, we know we have been granted power over sin, flesh and the devil. We have been washed by His blood and made holy and blameless, given His Holy Spirit who "pours out God's love into our hearts." If we sin now it is because it is our choice for we are no longer slaves of sin, but servants of righteousness! Rom 6: 15What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! 16Don't you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves, you are slaves to the one whom you obey-whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness? 17But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted. 18You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.
It is our part of the process to "put off" the old man and its ways and put on the new life of righteousness, holiness and love. Eph 4:22 KJV That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts.
We, since we have been given the Holy Spirit to dwell within us, must walk in the Spirit of love and not in the selfishness of the flesh. John14: 15"If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever- 17the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you." This means listening constantly to the Spirits still small voice for wisdom and direction. He, the Holy Spirit, is the Spirit of Christ. This is what Jesus told us: John 15:4Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
"Remain in me, that is, be constantly connected to the source, and I will remain in you". That is, you can feel my ever-present power. Jesus said if we love Him we will keep his commandments. You see, one of the tasks of the Holy Spirit is to fill our hearts with God's love. Rom 5:5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. It is that love for Christ that powers our incentive to obey Him. We know that He loves us. Can we not trust Him for strength, protection, and grace for every trial and trouble that comes our way? Do we not know that his wisdom is infallible and does not that insure that the outcome of our obedience will be amazingly rewarding?
Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, Heb. 12:1-2
[Quotations from NIV version of the Bible unless otherwise noted.]
Friday, March 09, 2007
Have you made the right choice?
We make many choices, some trivial, some important, and a few with eternal consequences. Some choices are influenced by trivial things, others by people in our lives, some by government or circumstances. Some we are pleased with some we regret. Some lead to happiness or gain others to dispair.or loss.
We generally enjoy the freedom we have to choose for ourselves our path of life.
God gave us that freedom and because we are his creation he loves us, all of us. And will never deny us the prevelage to make our own choices.
However, because He is the master and creator of all things he knows what is best for us. He told Adam and Eve exactly the truth and consequences of what could happen in the Garden of Eden. It was their choice to disregard His advice. They had known the presence and fellowship of their creator but because the temptor got her attention and told her lies she made a terrible mistake and chose to believe Satan rather than God. Adam was just as gulible.They had been clearly told that sin or disobidience produces death. When we read “death” we might nor know exactly what is meant. I am sure that Gods communication with Adam and Eve left no doubt in their mind about what was meant. It wasn’t instant phyisical death, it was something far more hideous than that. They were God’s creation, created in His image. That means eternal as he is eternal. This death is a change in character, With the rebellion against the creator comes the loss of His character in them. God is love. Now they have selfishness. God is truth. Now they have deciet. God is faithful. Now they have faithlessness. God is holy. Now they have sin. They have taken on the character of Satan himself. And at that time they could not reverse the choice. And because we are all of Adams family, we inherit the curse of his spiritual death and physical death as well. God later told Eve that someday that Satan would bruise her offspring’s heel and that He; Christ would bruise Satan’s head, so that the curse could be reversed.
God’s new offspring through Eve came as a baby named Jesus, born to a virgin, born in a manger. He came to save His people from their sin. It was His choice to atone for our wrong choices through His sacrifice on the cross of Calvary. He came as our savior to “reverse the curse” and to restore us the spiritual life of our creator with the love, truth, faithfulness, and holiness that he created us for.
The best choice you could make is to make Jesus Christ, the way the truth and the life, your Savior. He loves you. That is why He gave His life for you. You can become a new person. Old things will be gone and all your thoughts, deeds, and attitudes will be transformed by the love of Christ. Will you ask Him to forgive your sins and come into your life today? He longs for you to choose Him, he will hear you, forgive you, and change your life. Now it’s not His choice. It’s your choice!