“That Is What You Are”

even-smaller-bug-light116 Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If any man destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him, for the temple of God is holy, and that is what you are.1 Cor. 3:16-17 NASB

When Solomon built the first Temple in Jerusalem, it included the Holy of Holies or the Most Holy Place. That was where the Ark was placed and that is where the Shekinah glory of God came down. There was no sun or artificial light in the place, the glory of God was the only light that lit up the Most Holy Place. If anyone defiled the Most Holy Place in the Temple, they were sentenced to death. The priest that entered the Most Holy Place wore a rope around his ankle, so that if he erred in his duties and God destroyed him, his body could be pulled out. This should let us know how serious God is about the defilement of His Temple. Now, we are that Most Holy Place. It is hard for us to grasp the concept that we are a Temple of the Living God. There is the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit, actually living inside us. The Holy Spirit is a person with emotions. He can be grieved and hurt. If we choose a lifestyle that defiles the Temple, our bodies, we will be destroyed as well. Does this mean that we will die and go to hell? No, not if you have accepted Jesus as your Savior. It could very well mean that you depart from this earth at an earlier age than you expected.

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

“Worthy of His Kingdom”

5 And God will use this persecution to show his justice and to make you worthy of his Kingdom, for which you are suffering.— 2 Thess. 1:5 NLT

2 Thess. 1:3-10 NLT

Most Christians in the Western World have not experienced the kind of persecution to which Paul is referring. Probably the worst persecution that we receive is losing (temporarily, hopefully) the friendship of someone close to us because of our belief in the death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Here, Paul is talking about those early Christians who gave their lives for the Gospel. I would guess that most of us have wondered, at some time or other, how far we would go for the Gospel. Would I really lay down my life for Jesus?  Paul tells us that we should consider our physical bodies as dead already. 

3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.– Col. 3:3 NKJV

Since this is true, we should consider our physical bodies already dead. But our Spirit will always be alive because of what Jesus did for us at Calvary. So, if we are attempting to live the lifestyle that Jesus wants us to, isn’t the decision already made? We agreed to die with Christ and mortify (put to death) our fleshly desires so that we will be raised with Christ in our new immortal bodies. It is all about faith and trust. Will God do what He said or not? The answer is “Yes, of course, He will.” In His mercy, He will protect and perfect us and in His justice, He will repay the persecutors.

Romans 12:19-21 NLT

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

Post 10-14-2019

Our Bodies Are His Temple

18 “But will God really live on earth among people? Why, even the highest heavens cannot contain you. How much less this Temple I have built! — 2 Chronicles 6:18 NLT

2 Chronicles 6:18-21 NLT

David had arranged for all the building materials to complete the Temple that Solomon built to honor God and to serve as God’s dwelling place on earth. This was the place that all of Israel would come to worship God with their offerings.  Other than for special purposes, the Holy Spirit had not come to earth.  It would be after the Resurrection that He would come and abide in each believer.  Did God really live in the Temple?  No, but His presence filled the Temple.  On some occasions, His presence was so real and powerful that the priests were unable to enter the Temple.  As Solomon implied, there is no physical building that could contain God.  The only Temple that God desires to inhabit here on earth is our bodies.  He does that by abiding in our hearts.  Because of that, we can worship Him anywhere, anytime because we are the Temple that He inhabits.  He is with us and will never leave us.  We abide in Him and He in us when His words fill our hearts and we show that He abides in us when we show His love to others by the way we live our daily lives.

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

Post 01-23-2019

Swallowed Up By Life

even-smaller-bug-light1

For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.— 2 Cor. 5:3-5 NLT

When God first made man in His image, He looked at what He had made and said “it is very good” (Gen 1:31). Decay and death were not known at this time.  Then sin came into the world and things were no longer “very good”.  Our bodies, along with all creation, started to deteriorate and eventually die.  Jesus came into the world as a man to redeem the fallen creation and restore it to the order that had been in the garden.  Jesus brought hope to a dying world.  He came that we might be made “new creations”.  Newness requires that we get rid of the old.  We are saved when we accept Jesus and our Spirits are renewed but we remain in a fleshly body in a sinful world.  The Spirit is being renewed day by day but the flesh is decaying day by day.

 
16 So we have no reason to despair. Despite the fact that our outer humanity is falling apart and decaying, our inner humanity is breathing in new life every day. — 2 Cor.4:16 The Voice
 

Our hope, the thing that makes Christianity different from anything else, is that we will one day leave these rotting, fleshly bodies and live in those heavenly bodies that God has created for each of us. Bodies that do not suffer pain and will not decay or die.  God has prepared and continues to prepare us for this transition. We have a guarantee of this that lives inside of us so that we are never alone or without hope.  Until the process is complete and Jesus comes again, we live hopefully and joyfully “looking unto Jesus, the author and the finisher of our faith”.

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

Post 10-03-2018

Dead, Yet Alive With Christ!

even-smaller-bug-light1

And God will use this persecution to show his justice and to make you worthy of his Kingdom, for which you are suffering. — 2 Thess. 1:5 NLT

Most Christians in the Western World have not experienced the kind of persecution to which Paul is referring. Probably the worst persecution that we receive is losing (temporarily, hopefully) the friendship of someone close to us because of our belief in the death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Here, Paul is talking about those early Christians who gave their lives for the Gospel. I would guess that most of us have wondered, at some time or other, how far we would go for the Gospel. Would I really lay down my life for Jesus?  Paul tells us that we should consider our physical bodies as dead already. 

For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. – Col. 3:3 NKJV

Since this is true, we should consider our physical bodies already dead. But our Spirit will always be alive because of what Jesus did for us at Calvary. So, if we are attempting to live the lifestyle that Jesus wants us to, isn’t the decision already made? We agreed to die with Christ and mortify (put to death) our fleshly desires so that we will be raised with Christ in our new immortal bodies. It is all about faith and trust. Will God do what He said or not? The answer is “Yes, of course, He will.” In His mercy, He will protect and perfect us and in His justice, He will repay the persecutors


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

Post 03-22-2017

Heavenly Bodies

even-smaller-bug-light1For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.— 2 Cor. 5:3-5 NLT

When God first made man in His image, He looked at what He had made and said “it is very good” (Gen 1:31). Decay and death were not known at this time.  Then sin came into the world and things were no longer “very good”.  Our bodies, along with all creation, started to deteriorate and eventually die.  Jesus came into the world as a man to redeem the fallen creation and restore it to the order that had been in the garden.  Jesus brought hope to a dying world.  He came that we might be made “new creations”.  Newness requires that we get rid of the old.  We are saved when we accept Jesus and our Spirits are renewed but we remain in a fleshly body in a sinful world.  The Spirit is being renewed day by day but the flesh is decaying day by day. 
 
16 So we have no reason to despair. Despite the fact that our outer humanity is falling apart and decaying, our inner humanity is breathing in new life every day. — 2 Cor.4:16 The Voice
 
Our hope, the thing that makes Christianity different from anything else, is that we will one day leave these rotting, fleshly bodies and live in those heavenly bodies that God has created for each of us. Bodies that do not suffer pain and will not decay or die.  God has prepared and continues to prepare us for this transition.  We have a guarantee of this that lives inside of us so that we are never alone or without hope.  Until the process is complete and Jesus comes again, we live hopefully and joyfully “looking unto Jesus, the author and the finisher of our faith”.
Post 02-06-2016

To Die Is Gain

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

22 Philip went and told Andrew; Andrew went with Philip and they told Jesus.23 And Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of man to be glorified. 24 Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. 25 He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 If any one serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there shall my servant be also; if any one serves me, the Father will honor him. 27 “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, for this purpose I have come to this hour.—John 12:22-27 (NCV)
​Jesus​ responds to their request by saying that it was now time for Him to be glorified. They did not understand that He was referring to His death and resurrection. The grain of wheat that had to die was Jesus. Once a seed has sufficient moisture and temperature, it will split and a new plant starts to grow. The new plant takes everything from the seed to accomplish its growth. In other words, the seed gives itself up (dies) for the new plant. With proper care, the new plant will produce much fruit of its own kind. Jesus knew from before the foundation of the world, that His mission would be to give Himself up for us. When Jesus freely gives Himself up and is buried, the germination process has begun. Now all who accept Him are new creatures. Formed completely out of His body from His own nature. Now that the process of growth has started, we must continue that process by caring for the new creature. We do that by studying Scripture, meditating on His Word and communicating with God through the Holy Spirit. If we follow the example of Jesus, we become bond slaves to Him and servants to our fellow man. We keep this up until our physical body is used up or until Jesus returns, whichever comes first.
17 If anyone belongs to Christ, there is a new creation. The old things have gone; everything is made new! –2 Cor. 15:17 (NCV)
​Then when Jesus returns, the transformation will be complete! We will have new bodies because our fleshly bodies cannot stand in the glory of God.
​46 The spiritual did not come first, but the physical and then the spiritual. 47 The first man came from the dust of the earth. The second man came from heaven. 48 People who belong to the earth are like the first man of earth. But those people who belong to heaven are like the man of heaven. 49 Just as we were made like the man of earth, so we will also be made like the man of heaven.—1 Cor 15:46-49 (NCV)
Post 01-16-2015

“….And They Will Never Die”!!!

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

22 The time came for the Feast of Dedication at Jerusalem. It was winter, 23 and Jesus was walking in the Temple in Solomon’s Porch. 24 The Jews gathered around him and said, “How long will you make us wonder about you? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.” 25 Jesus answered, “I told you already, but you did not believe. The miracles I do in my Father’s name show who I am. 26 But you don’t believe, because you are not my sheep. 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never die, and no one can steal them out of my hand. 29 My Father gave my sheep to me. He is greater than all, and no person can steal my sheep out of my Father’s hand.—John 10:22-29 (NCV)
What a tremendous, magnificent, awesome promise!!! They will never die! And that promise is still in effect today. These old bodies that we wear around will one day give out, but we, our soul, will never die!​ Once we have accepted Jesus and the Holy Spirit abides in us, we are assured that we will never die. Guaranteed!!
13 So it is with you. When you heard the true teaching—the Good News about your salvation—you believed in Christ. And in Christ, God put his special mark of ownership on you by giving you the Holy Spirit that he had promised. 14 That Holy Spirit is the guarantee that we will receive what God promised for his people until God gives full freedom to those who are his—to bring praise to God’s glory—Ephesians 1:13, 14 (NCV)
​No person or no thing can take us out of the hands of Jesus because God is greater than all and no one can defeat Him or His purpose. We will have new bodies and live forever with Christ Jesus, our Savior and Lord.
16 From this time on we do not think of anyone as the world does. In the past we thought of Christ as the world thinks, but we no longer think of him in that way. 17 If anyone belongs to Christ, there is a new creation. The old things have gone; everything is made new! 18 All this is from God. Through Christ, God made peace between us and himself, and God gave us the work of telling everyone about the peace we can have with him​.—1 Cor. 5:16-18 (NCV)
Post 12-03-2015

Drink Your Milk!!

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

1 So get rid of all evil behavior. Be done with all deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy, and all unkind speech. 2 Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment, 3 now that you have had a taste of the Lord’s kindness. 4 You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God’s temple. He was rejected by people, but he was chosen by God for great honor. 5 And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God.—1 Peter 2: 1-5 (NLT)
​Just​ as we needed our milk as physical babies, we need pure milk as spiritual babies. We need to become well grounded in the basics of Christianity so that we can stand against temptations to go back into the lifestyle that we lived as sinners. We are new creatures in Christ Jesus and we need to learn a new language and a new way of walking. Faith comes by hearing, so we need to hear the Word everyday. Just as our children learn to read by reading out loud to us, we need to practice reading a few verses out loud every day. Tell God every day that you love Him and want to be obedient to Him. Just as hungry babies cry out for their nourishment, there are times in our lives when we need to cry out to God for guidance from His Word. As we study, meditate, and grow, we will be able to take our place as building blocks in God’s body, the Church. We are his holy priests and should daily offer ourselves as living sacrifices that please God.
12 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him–Romans 12:1 (NLT)
Once we have made progress on “the milk” of the Word, we can move on to solid food.
14 Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong.–Hebrews 5:14 (NLT)
Post 09-09-14