“He Gave Us Life”

5 that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) – Ephesians 2:5 NLT

Eph. 2:1-7 NLT

We are saved by God’s amazing grace. There is nothing we can do to earn salvation. It was bought and paid for at the cross on Calvary. Jesus paid for every sin that man has ever committed, past, present and future. His redeeming work is finished, He will not be going back to the cross. So, when we sin, and we all do, just remember that the blood of Jesus spilled at Calvary has already cleansed us. Our part is to ask for and accept that cleansing and forgiveness. He comes to us wherever we are, picks us up, cleans us, and restores us to Himself. It is all for His glory! So, we should give Him honor, praise, and glory every day of our lives.

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

Post 09-06-2019

Dirty Spots

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12 They are like dirty spots in your special Christian meals you share. They eat with you and have no fear, caring only for themselves. They are clouds without rain, which the wind blows around. They are autumn trees without fruit that are pulled out of the ground. So they are twice dead. – Jude 12 NCV
Jude continues to warn us about the ungodly people that have wormed their way into our churches. Some have risen to leadership positions and influence others to follow them. They are blowhards that spew out evil without regard to conscience. They are like the wind that blows clouds without rain during a drought. They promise much but they yield nothing but dryness and false hope. These ungodly people join in when we are honoring our Lord by the taking of the communion meal. They participate without accepting Jesus as their Lord and Savior ignoring the warning that the Scriptures give us:
27 So a person who eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in a way that is not worthy of it will be guilty of sinning against the body and the blood of the Lord. 28 Look into your own hearts before you eat the bread and drink the cup, 29 because all who eat the bread and drink the cup without recognizing the body eat and drink judgment against themselves.–1 Cor. 11:27,28 (NCV)

These people are constantly complaining and blaming others for their sins. God is coming with thousands of His angels to punish all these ungodly people. Avoid fellowship with these people at all times. These are the kinds of people to whom Jesus was referring when He said:
 

23 Then I will tell them clearly, ‘Get away from me, you who do evil. I never knew you.’–Matt. 7:23 (NCV)


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

Post 07-27-2017

Dead, Yet Alive With Christ!

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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

Raised Up for His Glory

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1For you were buried with Christ when you were baptized. And with him you were raised to new life because you trusted the mighty power of God, who raised Christ from the dead.
— Colossians 2:12 NLT

The Old Testament circumcision was of the flesh as an outward symbol of a covenant relationship with God. Our circumcision is of the spirit removing our sinful nature and replacing it with God’s Holy Spirit. Our hearts and desires were changed and God wrote His Name upon our hearts. Our baptism is the outward symbol of being buried with Christ and raised again to a new life.

“This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!”-2 Cor. 5:17
” Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.” Eph. 4:24

We were spiritually dead in our sinful nature but now all things are made new. We are new creatures:
 

“Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.”-Romans 6:4


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

Post 03-06-2017

Oh, the Depths of His Mercy

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All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else.
— Ephesians 2:3 NLT

None of us have lived a sinless life, we all were once dead spiritually because of our sins and failures. Not knowing any better because we were born in the flesh, we allowed our lives to be ruled by satan. Under his dominion, we followed the desires of our flesh. These desires caused us to mistreat others and live lives that were disobedient to God. All of us deserved to die because of our disobedience. We were dead in in sin, but God already had a plan in place to redeem us and bring us back to Himself. Because of His great love for us, He sent Jesus to die for us. When He raised Jesus from death to life, He made a way for us to be made alive together with Christ. We should live a lifestyle that is pleasing to God, not because of obligation or debt, but because we love Him deeply and want to please Him.

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

Post -01-26-2017

Fourteen Times

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71 “Why do we need other witnesses?” they said. “We ourselves heard him say it.” — Luke 22:71 NLT
When I read this verse, I often think, “How could these people be face to face with Jesus and refuse to believe?”.   But, then, I am reminded of how many times I was called by the Holy Spirit and refused to believe.  It is easy for us to assume that we would have acted differently than those people did then.  We let oursleves off easy thinking that we would have surely believed Jesus in this situation.  But, just as Abraham told the rich man who requested that he send Lazarus back to his home town to speak to his brothers, if they won’t believe Moses and the prophets, they won’t believe even if they saw someone return from the dead.
On the day that Jesus was crucified, there were prophets and holy people of old whose bodies were released from the grave and they walked the streets of Jerusalem, but not all of Jerusalem was saved.
The point is this, people that have lived since the Holy Spirit was sent to call us, lead us and comfort us, have more reasons to believe than most of those people back then.  We can look back over history and see more of God’s promises fullfilled than they could and yet, there are many that still refuse to believe. We will hear the story multiple more times than most of them heard it, but not all will believe  Every person will hear the story and have the opporitunity to receive Jesus as their Savior, yet not all will do so.   As time goes by, hearts grow harder and harder.  A few years ago, it was reported that we had to hear the story seven times before we accepted Jesus.  Now, that number is reported to have risen to fourteen. Our work is to keep telling the story and we must keep telling it more and more, so those around us will have more opportunities.  But the results of our telling the story are in God’s hands.  Our work is to tell, His work is to confirm it in the hearts of those He has chosen.
Post 04-27-2016

To Live Or To Die, Which Would Be Better?

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

9 A large crowd of Jews heard that Jesus was in Bethany. So they went there to see not only Jesus but Lazarus, whom Jesus raised from the dead. 10 So the leading priests made plans to kill Lazarus, too. 11 Because of Lazarus many of the Jews were leaving them and believing in Jesus. —John 12:9-​11​ (NCV)
​Sin always takes us further than we want to go. The leaders had planned to kill Jesus and now they would have to kill Lazarus as well. How many others would have to die before the movement was stopped? We don’t know because Christians are still being killed today for their faithfulness to Jesus. The persecuted church of today will tell you that it is much harder to live for Jesus than it is to die for Him. Would we suffer and die for Jesus? Jesus said that we must be willing to do that.
34 Then Jesus called the crowd to him, along with his followers. He said, “If people want to follow me, they must give up the things they want. They must be willing even to give up their lives to follow me. 35 Those who want to save their lives will give up true life. But those who give up their lives for me and for the Good News will have true life.–Mark 8:34-35 (NCV)
Have we made that commitment? ​ Can we say along with Paul:
10 I want to know Christ and the power that raised him from the dead. I want to share in his sufferings and become like him in his death.11 Then I have hope that I myself will be raised from the dead.–Philippians 3:10, 11 (NCV)
The great thing is that for us, it is a win-win situation. Paul put it this way:
21 For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better.–Philippians 1: 21 (NLT)
Post 01-14-2015