“Freely I Give…”

even-smaller-bug-light1

18 No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded.” – John 10:18 NLT
 

The decision for Jesus to be the perfect Lamb sacrificed for our redemption was made long before the world was spoken into existence.
18 You know that in the past you were living in a worthless way, a way passed down from the people who lived before you. But you were saved from that useless life. You were bought, not with something that ruins like gold or silver, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, who was like a pure and perfect lamb. 20 Christ was chosen before the world was made, but he was shown to the world in these last times for your sake. —1 Peter 1:18-20 (NCV)
Jesus the human did not want to die on the cross any more than you or I would want to die such a cruel death. But Jesus as the second Person of the Trinity knew from time immemorial that He was going to do just that. Since Jesus was the Word and the Word was with God, Jesus was there when the decision was made and was in full agreement with the plan. So, He could truthfully say that He had the right to give His life and to take it back. Taking His life back was a reference to His resurrection that the Jews did not understand at that time. Being spiritually blind, they thought Jesus must be crazy or demon possessed. Before we accepted Jesus, we had no understanding of what Jesus was doing and why He was doing it. But, now that we know, it is our responsibility to carry the Good News to others. Let us freely give our time in spreading the Gospel so that others may have life eternal.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 10-05-2017

“I AM” – “The Light”

even-smaller-bug-light1

12 Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life. – John 8:12 NLT

The claim that Jesus made “I am the Light of the world” was true. It was a fulfillment of the prophecy in Isaiah
2 The people who walk in darkness will see a great light.For those who live in a land of deep darkness, a light will shine.-Isaiah 9:2 (NLT)
Where the light shines, it dispels darkness, the two cannot abide together. Those that follow the light of Jesus can walk without stumbling and they will be led to eternal life. When we were being led by the flesh, we walked in darkness and misjudged people just as the Pharisees and the religious leaders did. We were unable to see and understand the truth. When the Holy Spirit shined the Light of Jesus upon us, we could no longer live in darkness. Filled with the Holy Spirit, we are now the light that shines in the darkness of the world.
14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.—M​a​tt. 5:14, 15 (NLT
This reminds me of the old hymn by Philip Paul Bliss. The hymn was inspired by a story told by the well known preacher, Dwight L Moody.
Brightly beams our Father’s mercy
From His lighthouse evermore,
But to us He gives the keeping
Of the lights along the shore.
Chorus:
Let the lower lights be burning!
Send a gleam across the wave!
Some poor fainting, struggling seaman
You may rescue, you may save.

We are the lower lights, we must continue to shine to lead others safely to the shore.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 09-22-2017

“His Child and Forever I Am”

even-smaller-bug-light1

16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave[c] his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. ​ – John 3:16 NLT

The finite human mind finds it impossible to understand the infinite love, mercy and grace of the heavenly Father. If someone tells us facts about earthly things and we refuse to believe, how is it possible for that person to tell us about heavenly things? Without the Holy Spirit, it would be impossible. But, because of His great love for the creatures He created, God has made the salvation plan free and simple. He gave us His Son to redeem us from all our sins, past, present and future. Jesus is the perfect, eternal gift. When God looks at us, He sees us through the Perfect blood of Jesus, even though, in our flesh, we are not perfect, that is how He sees us. To those who have accepted Jesus as Savior and Lord, there is no condemnation nor can there be. Jesus came that we might be redeemed and have an abundant life here and hereafter. Start enjoying the freedom and liberty that we have now in Christ Jesus.

 
No Condemnation


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 08-12-2107

WHY?

even-smaller-bug-light1

12 God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. — James 1:12 NLT
Why do Christians have to endure trials and persecutions? I suppose people have been asking this question since the first century. The disciples never quite understood why Jesus had to suffer and die until after the Resurrection. God does not allow us to go through suffering so that He will know where we are on our journey, He allows it so that we will know. He allows it so that our “I can” will turn into “No, I can’t but God can”. “No pain, no gain” applies to spiritual growth as well as physical. Would understanding the “why” really make the pain any less real or painful?  I am sure that since Jesus was in on the plan of redemption, He understood the why, but that didn’t keep Him from asking His Father if there might not be another way. As he prayed in the garden of Gethsemane.
 

42 He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.”–Matt. 26:42 NIV

 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 04-10-2017

He Forgives Us When We Fail

even-smaller-bug-light1

15 This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. — Hebrews 4:15 NLT
If it had been possible for us to live a perfect, sinless life, then Jesus would not have had to die on the Cross for our redemption. But God knew that we would fail and come short of perfection. It is no surprise to Him, so He made a way, before the foundations of the earth were laid, for us to be reconciled with Him. A simple, yet very expensive plan. One that we could not purchase for ourselves, so Jesus purchased it for us. Once we have accepted Jesus as our Savior, God’s Holy Spirit comes to live (abide) in us. He is our teacher and guide, but He will not force us to be obedient, it is still our choice, Our flesh wars against doing God’s will and when we give in, we must confess our sins and ask God for His forgiveness. We can do this boldly and without fear of punishment. Because of His great love and mercy, we will find the grace that we need when we need it most. We should fear (respect) God, but we are not to fear (be afraid) of God. Our love for Him should cause us to respect and obey Him. We will fail but God is waiting with open arms to forgive and restore us to Himself.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 01-25-2017

Healing Stream

even-smaller-bug-light1

39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. — Romans 8:39 NLT
 
 
The love of God is perfect and is far too great for the human mind to grasp in its entirety.   How could the Creator of the universe and everything in it stoop to loving us?  Why does He bother Himself to listen to and answer every prayer that we pray?  At our worst, we are wretched sinners and even at our best, we fall so short of being what God created us to be.  We can only bow our heads and say with the Psalmist, “what are human beings that you should care for them”?  Yet, you gave up all of your glory in heaven, put on a human body and lived among us.  You revealed your love to us in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Such matchless mercy, such generous grace and such limitless love is more than we can even imagine.  With our sins, we crucify you afresh every day, yet, you continue to forgive us and love us back to you.  Help us, Lord, to love you enough to be channels of your love to those around us.  Even though it may be painful at times, Lord, stretch us and fill us with your love until we overflow, until your love breaks forth from us and washes over those around us bringing them into “the healing stream that flows from Calvary’s mountain” .Amen.
Post 01-21-2017

The Prophecy Fulfilled

even-smaller-bug-light1

16 They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. — Luke 2:16 NLT
All  the things had happened just as Gabriel had told Mary.  Having never known a man, she conceived a child fathered by the Holy Spirit.  A fleshly Mother and a Spiritual Father, so it was that He became fully man and fully God in the flesh.  Just as God had promised hundreds of years earlier, He sent a Redeemer to save us who would also one day reign as our King. He had to live as a human to experience all the temptations we experience and never fail the test.  He had to choose and mentor men to carry on His message to a lost world. Through the Holy Spirit, He is still choosing and mentoring people to carry that message to their families, neighbors, friends and people around the world.  Today, on the day that we celebrate as His birthday, let each of us give Him the only thing we can give to our King. Our souls and our commitment to accept the plan He has for each of us.  Then it will truly be “Joy to the World, the King has come.” 
May each of you have a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 12-25-2016