When you consider all of the apostles and preachers and missionaries who have gone into the world since Jesus ascended to His Father nearly two thousand years ago, there is only one message.
God loves you and sent His Son, Jesus, to die for your sins to reconcile each of you to Himself. We can’t save ourselves and there is no amount of work or money or even time that will save us from the wrath of God if we haven’t accepted Jesus as our Savior. God has made it so simple even a small child can understand it, but most adults want to make it complicated and try to add some bit of work or help that we have to do to “help” God save them.
It isn’t needed! We can’t do anything that will get us clean and sanctified without the blood of Jesus and the acceptance of His atonement for us on the cross. Yes, we do want to help but our salvation has already been paid for through Christ. This is the message that has been saving people for two thousand years. It doesn’t take a degree from a seminary or a college to get this message across to people.
Just preach about Jesus Christ and His sacrifice and His resurrection. Tell others why He came to bring salvation to all who would believe. Either by teaching others, preaching, blogging, or just plain witnessing to those who may be curious. A bunch of fishermen did it with a tax collector in the bunch for good measure. Jesus had a larger group than just those twelve and each one brought a special ability to the group. All of them were called to be His representative in the world and all of them did exactly that, just as we are supposed to do.
Jesus paid the price for our sins, the entire world’s sins, it is still up to us whether we will accept His atonement for those sins and live our lives forgiven and free from the slavery of sin.
What are you talking about now? I’m talking about the way we take so much for granted these days. Men take their wives for granted and children take their parents for granted. It just goes on and on and on. We even go to bed expecting to wake up in the morning and go to work or go fishing…taking the Lord for granted that He will allow us to have another day for our pleasure.
All of this “taking for granted”is just too much! We have never been given nor guaranteed to have a certain number of years or days to live and work and play. God allows us today to serve Him and if we do well in that area then He may give us tomorrow and the next day…possibly. Why do I sound pessimistic? Because, the farmer who built bigger barns for his produce and wanted to sit back and take it easy didn’t have the time to take it easy. His soul was required that night so he didn’t enjoy his so-called “retirement” because God said it was time for his soul to be judged.
If we would wake in the morning and thank God for waking us on this day to serve Him and give us His blessing for the day then we may live past today or tomorrow or next month. But there are many who refuse to give Him thanks for waking them up for the day. They look at it as today is given to me and I’m going to make the most of it for my enjoyment. That is not what we are put here for and it is especially not what we are called for as Christians.
Living our daily life as Christians, honoring God with our life and our income and telling others about His blessings that come to us because of His love for us NOT because of anything that we have done. The only thing that we have done to be a Christian is to recognize that we are sinners and that we need Jesus Christ to come into our hearts and make us a new creation in Him. Once we recognize that we need Him then we repent of those sinful ways and turn to Him and follow Him for the rest of our lives.
We don’t become Christians by attending church and Sunday school every week. We don’t become a Christian because our parents and grandparents are Christians. Many people have claimed to be Christians but their life doesn’t show the fruits of the Holy Spirit which comes to those who truly are! God is the only One Who knows your heart and He is the judge of believers and non-believers alike. For believers He judges your actions after you become a Christian to see the kind of fruit you have produced. For non-believers He is your judge and He asks one question, “Why didn’t you believe in my Son?”
Taking your salvation for granted is the worst mistake that anyone who thinks they are a Christian can possibly make. It is an eternal mistake which will cost you your soul and your eternity. I pray that anyone who has even a small bit of doubt about their eternity or their salvation will seek Jesus and make sure of it soon.
Begin your day with prayer. As you wake up, thank God for the day and ask Him to give you strength for today and the trials that may come with it. Seek to find someone that you can tell about Jesus Christ because that is our purpose after giving our heart to Him. Ask Him to forgive you of your sinful thoughts and to help keep you from sinning today. God will answer these requests because they are in line with His will for your life in Christ.
Don’t pray in public. This prayer time is for you and God and nobody else. He loves you more than anyone else in the world so make sure you talk to Him through prayer as soon as possible when you wake up. You have another day to be His witness to those around you, so make it a good day by starting out with prayer.
For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 4:14-17 KJV
Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again. Luke 6:38 KJV https://bible.com/bible/1/luke 6.38.KJV
Many people interpret this verse as meaning we should give more to the church as a tithe and we will be rewarded with more money. That is not its true meaning. We are to give of ourselves. Our life, our time and our abilities and obedience to Jesus and His call on our life because of the atonement and the grace that we have been given. After you have given your heart to Him and have become a disciple following Him and His example daily, your life will be enriched with joy because of the awesome and wonderful gifts you have been given! Your sins have been forgiven and you will live in eternity with Jesus!
You will be walking with Him in eternity but what about now? That is what “take up your cross and follow Me” is referring to. Put your old life on the cross, whatever it may have been. An addiction or any other thing that you were holding onto before you came to know Him.
Enoch walked with God and he was taken up to Heaven one day. Elijah was also taken up to Heaven without seeing death. Jesus also said to “take up your cross and follow Me” meaning walk with Me daily. Many people are confused about the “take up your cross” part of that command because there is no real definition about what our cross is. It could be your addiction or a painful relationship that you need to either work on fixing or get help with overcoming the pain it caused. But there was another phrase that Jesus placed in front of taking up your cross and that was to “deny yourself”.
Both of them together could be interpreted to mean something that is getting in the way of your ability to follow Jesus that you need to put away or lay down. Again it could be an addiction or some other “thing” that is getting in your way, something that you haven’t let go of even after giving your heart to Jesus. Sometimes we keep parts of our “old” life in a virtual closet and we go back to it on occasion because we just can’t let it go, but in order to be fully committed to Jesus and following Him we have to.
It is at this time that we have to seek the help of the Holy Spirit because we haven’t let go of whatever it was on our own and it is likely that we can’t let it go in our own strength. We need to ask Him to give us the strength to let go of our old way of living and help us to learn how to follow Him. The Christian life was never promised to us as an easy road to walk on. We are tempted and tried almost every hour of every day. Especially if we are actively trying to follow closely our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. As long as we are going back to our “old life” we aren’t a threat to Satan but when we are truly trying to live as a Christian and take His message with us everywhere then we become a threat.
The longer and more active your life in Christ is, then the “ruler of this world” sees you as a threat to his plans. So don’t think that life will be easier when you give your heart to Jesus and begin to learn more about Him from your Bible study. The demons and powers that Satan controls will be watching you even closer because of your faith in Jesus. You can hinder their work through prayer and telling others about Jesus and what He has done for you and that makes the words that you say to others very powerful.
Don’t let go of your faith even when bad things happen because they will happen. The devil loves to trip Christians up with temptations that are specific to each of us and he’s had many thousands of years of practice. He caused Adam and Eve to disobey God’s command in the Garden and he was doing it with the angels that he convinced to follow him in his rebellion against God. He isn’t some little demon with a pitchfork and a pointed tail dancing around for fun. Satan was an archangel before God kicked him out of heaven with those who followed him but God is the Creator. As long as you have Jesus in your heart and you are following His example every day you will be fine. Make sure of your salvation soon because we are not guaranteed tomorrow morning.
Many great men have lived and died in the world. Some of them lived on the side of evil like Hitler or Stalin and some were on the side of good like Martin Luther King and John F. Kennedy. Each of them meant to do what was right in their own eyes and sometimes they tried to do the best thing, whatever it was, for their people and their nation. In the end each of them died. Some died due to war or suicide and others because of other evil men and their intention to kill or assassinate them before they could do everything that they felt was needed at the time.
Even religious leaders in the past like Buddha or Muhammad died. The only One Who died and then rose from the grave was Jesus the Christ, the Son of God. He taught His disciples for a little over three years before the religious leaders of the day finally had enough and convinced Pilate to have Him crucified. His resurrection is the victory over death that we, as Christians, celebrate today. His grave or tomb is the only one that had no evidence for His body except for the burial cloths that were wrapped around Him prior to His burial.
Historians of His day recorded that He died on the cross and was buried according to Jewish law. But He didn’t stay in the tomb. Over the next forty days He was seen by many people, once by as many as five hundred, then just prior to Pentecost He was taken up from the Mount of Olives to sit at the right hand of God the Father. The angels who appeared to the disciples after His departure told them that “this same Jesus will return in like manner“. Our Savior and King is coming back to set up His kingdom on Earth. What a glorious day that will be!
Jesus also told His disciples that “I am going to prepare a place for you“. He is coming back to take the Church to the home that He has prepared for all of us who have given our hearts and our lives to Him. That is the hope that we have because He isn’t in the tomb. Our hope is in Him and His return for His Bride, the church. There is nothing left on God’s prophetic calendar until He calls us to be with Him except maybe one or two more people that will accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. It could be more or it could be only one more person, only God knows the date and the hour that the call will go out for us to come up here.
The definition of the word “holy” is a life devoted entirely to God or the work of God. Sometimes you read that God is holy and He is, but we are set apart for God’s work when it’s used about us. When we are saved through the Holy Spirit’s work in our hearts, God’s work is our work! Your life is given to you by God and we are on this Earth to do His work especially for His purpose and He has given each of us the ability and the talent to do this each and every day!
Consider this: you have the answer to eternal life that will save each person from an eternity separated from your Creator and your Savior. Why would you keep that information from someone that needs to know that they are loved beyond measure by the Creator of everything? There are so many people today who have taken their lives because they feel unloved, unwanted, and depressed because they don’t know about the Savior Who gave His life so they could have life into eternity.
Your life can be changed by Jesus with one simple prayer and your belief in Him and His work on the cross for you. A child can understand it, even one that isn’t very old at all. God loves you and He has loved you since the beginning, even before the Earth was created. Why do people continually think that everything came about by accident? You and your eyes and the elephant in Africa and the smallest bird were all created by God. Not one of these came about by some accidental coming together of molecules in some primordial soup.
Eternity is a very long time and it is where we all go after this life is over. Your destination in eternity is determined by your decision about Jesus and whether you have asked Him to come into your heart and bring salvation to your life. When you feel the touch of the Holy Spirit that convicts you that you need Jesus as your Savior, you have to make that decision. Will you accept Jesus as your Savior or will you tell the Holy Spirit that you aren’t ready yet so come back next week or next month.
What if you don’t have a week or a month? If you had a wreck in a car tonight or tomorrow night and you haven’t settled this before you die then you will go to hell. Not because you are a bad person. Not because you forgot to give a tithe to the church last week. You will go to hell because you didn’t ask Jesus into your heart when you felt His touch and you knew that you needed Him as your Savior. A decision to put it off is a refusal of God’s grace and mercy through the blood of Jesus and that decision is the one that will send you to hell.
If you have a chance to tell someone about Jesus and His sacrifice for their life and yours, you have to do it. Even if they won’t accept it or they get mad and walk away, tell them that Jesus loves them and He died so that they could have eternity ahead of them. This life doesn’t last forever. We only have seven decades or maybe eight if we have good health, but just consider how long eternity is and how short our life actually is in comparison.