Sunday, December 4, 2016

His Death, Our Death--His Life, Our Life

Jesus did not die for us only.

He died as us:

"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.' (Galatians 2:20)

When he rose from the dead, we rose with Him:

"Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." (Romans 6:4)

and

"Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead." (Colossians 2:12)

and also

"And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again." (2 Corinthians 5:15)

This revelation is crucial (Cross).

Jesus did not come to make bad men good.

He came to bring dead men to life!



Jesus announced who the Devil was and what he wanted to accomplish--but also what He was determined to do for all of us!

"The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." (John 10:10)

"When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby." (John 11:4)

Jesus is glorified not just because He healed the sick.

The greatest revelation to all that He is the Resurrection and the Life (John 11:25) because He brought Lazarus back from the dead:

"Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:" (JOhn 11:25)

We believe on Him -- and we are brought to life!

That is the one work Jesus exhorted the Jews of His day--and all of us--to do:

"Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent." (John 6:29)

Jesus gave life to Lazarus for all to believe:

"And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go." (John 11: 43-44)

Jesus died our death, and we live His life!

Saturday, December 3, 2016

We Are Free From Sin When We Know We Are Free to Sin

"Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile." (Psalm 32:2)

David calls this man "blessed."

The man whom the LORD does not impute sin.

"Impute" means that he does not punish sin.

Now, the man still commits sin, does he not?

Otherwise, there would be no sin to impute in the first place!

So, what do we have here?

A picture of the Gospel!

Paul announced this clear change in covenants to his people:

"Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: 39And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses." (Acts 13:38-39)

We must understand that righteousness is a gift which God keeps on giving to us:

"For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ." (Romans 5:17)

This gift is something that we receive, even when we sin (verb):

"7Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.

8Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin." (Romans 4:7-8)

Paul later explains that this gift of righteousness sets us free from sin!

"What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." (Romans 6:1-4)

We are released from sin, when we recognize that we are released from the penalty and granted a new life!

This Gospel is a deep offense to man.

The moment that we tell people that all their sins are forgiven, they become fearful and indignant.

"You are giving them license to sin!"

Yet Paul knocks down that lie without blinking.

On the contrary--we are giving people the power to overcome sin.

In effect, men and women are set free from sin ... when they know that they are free to sin without punishment.

Let us not forget that the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23)

Man needs LIFE!


Jesus came to provide us life--Himself!

I am free to sin?

No thanks!

Life is better! His life is the best!

"When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory." (Colossians 3:4)

When I know that there is no longer any condemnation for sin--guess what? I do not want to sin!

I receive His spirit and life, and I have no desire for dead things.

We are truly set free when we know the Truth Who sets us free! (John 8:32)

Monday, November 28, 2016

Christ is Our Wisdom

"But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:" (1 Corinthians 1:30)

Do you need wisdom for a situation you are facing?

I notice that many times when I need direction or guidance, or when other people suggest a certain course of action, they would uote Scriptures from the Bible, specifically the Proverbs.

And yet I would find that the peace of Christ ruling in my heart (Colossians 3:15) did not lead me to follow the suggestions posed by others, even when they were  quoting scripture.

Then I return to what the Bible is all about.

We are called to a Person, not to a set of principles.




We are invited to rest in a Person, not a set of ideas:

"Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son." (2 John 9)

The Bible is not "Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth."

The Bible is book of life, and that life is Jesus (John 14:6)

"Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me." (John 5:39)

The Bible is not a snippet or a large selection of aphorisms that we apply like a code book to every situation in our lives.

Jesus is our life, and the Bible speaks of Himself!

If we need wisdom for any situation, the solution is not a set of ideas or a prescription or a response.

We need to see more of Him!

Wisdom is a Person, and that Person is Jesus!


Sunday, November 27, 2016

Because of the Blood of Jesus, We Can Speak Grace into our Lives

"And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel." (Hebrews 12:24)

The blood of Jesus is powerful, and we need to see that because Jesus died for us, we are no longer condemned, but now free to receive the grace of God fully into our lives.

The blood of Jesus speaks, and we can learn more about God's grace operating in our lives by considering the word "mouth" in Hebrew.

The word "mouth" is made of two letters:

פֶּ -- Peh which means "mouth, expression,"
ה -- Heh, which means "grace"


When we see the word "mouth" we need to see how it's all about speaking forth God's grace.

Where is the first mention of "mouth" in the Bible?

"And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother's blood from thy hand;" (Genesis 4:11)

Notice the connection with blood.

Notice that the earth is taking in the blood. In this passage, the blood of Abel condemns man, specifically Abel's brother Cain.

What is the last mention of "mouth" in the Old Testament?

"For the priest's lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts." (Malachi 2:7)



The previous verse gives greater revelation about this law which the prophet Malachi speaks of:

"The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips: he walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many away from iniquity." (Malachi 2:6)

"The law of truth." What is that new law?

Grace, for grace and truth is one!

"For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ." (John 1:17)

We are no longer under line, facing chastisement and punishment for our sins.

Because Jesus died for us, because His blood cleanses us from all sin, we live under His grace.

Let us speak forth the great things that He has done and does for us today!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Living By His Endless Life, Not the Law

"And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest, 16Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life." (Hebrews 10: 15-16)

This passage really jumped out at me.

Notice that Jesus is made a High Priest Forever by the law, but rather through the eternal life that He is (John 14:6).

In the same way, every one of us who believes in Jesus--we are made priests, kings and priests, because of Jesus' death and His eternal life.

"But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:" (1 Peter 2:9)

How did we become priests?

Jesus took us into Himself.

We left our dead selves in Adam, and became alive in Christ!

"But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. 16And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. 17For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ." (Romans 5: 15-17)

How do we live today?

We live through His life!

"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. 21I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain." (Galatians 2: 20-21)

We have no life, nor power to live, through the law.

The was never meant to be a guide for living, but rather a standard to show our need for a Savior, and for life!

"Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin." (Romans 3: 20)

and

"[God] also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life." (2 Corinthians 3:6)

Jesus was made High Priest Forever not through the Old Covenant of the law, but through the New Covenant of grace, in which we receive His life, and all things with it! (Romans 8:32)

Let us receive more of Jesus, allowing Him to flow and bless every aspect of our walk!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Because of Jesus, We Expect Victory

"But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; 13From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool." (Hebrew 10: 12-13)

When Jesus sat down, He purged all our sins forever (Hebrews 1:3)

As King of Kings, and our High Priest Forever, He know rests, and watches all things become His footstool.

Did you know that we are also seated in Christ, with Him?

"But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) 6And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:" (Ephesians 2:4-6)



We are seated with Christ in heavenly places!

John stated more clearly for anyone who still does not understand the new standing, the new glory we have in Christ Jesus:

"Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world." (1 John 4:17)

So, just like Jesus, we need to trust our loving, heavenly Father, that whatever challenges or problems we face, He is taking care of them, and bringing them under our feet!

"Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us." (Romans 8:37)

Friday, October 7, 2016

Our Father the Husbandman: He Cleanses

"Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit." (John 15:2)

Behold the second part of this blessed page.

The original sense which readers draw from this is a sense of pain, like being cut or buthered.

This verse definitely communicates change, particularly the removal of bad things or impure elements from our lives.

Yet the removal is through cleansing, not cutting.

The word "prune" is the Greek word "cleanse."

We are cleansed as we listen to God's Word!

""You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you." (John 15:3)

And then:

"For them I sanctify Myself, so that they too may be sanctified by the truth." (John 17:19)

And also

"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish." (Ephesians 5: 25-27)

God is all about cleansing us, not cutting, maiming, or hurting us.

Be cleansed by the washing of His word, and bear more fruit for Him!