Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21 KJV https://bible.com/bible/1/eph.3.20-21.KJV
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 1 Corinthians 3:16 KJV https://bible.com/bible/1/1co.3.16.KJV
The title of this is “God Loves You!”. Why would I use such an old, tired, sentence as that? We all know that God loves us because that’s what the gospel says in John 3:16!
Our problem with this is that we know He loves us but we don’t live as if we love Him! However old you were when you came to the knowledge that you needed Jesus in your life and your heart, whether you were twelve or twenty or even fifty years old, that is supposed to be your spiritual birthday. But…have you grown any since then? Many people accept Jesus as their Savior and then if they mean it, they sit down and they read some Bible stories or a verse or two every Sunday. And that’s it!
That’s as far as they go. They don’t read the whole Bible. They don’t go to Bible study during the week or on Sunday night. They feel that they have their Jesus and they don’t need to know any more than that. All of this would be great IF they lived their faith and their salvation in front of everyone…every day! But most of us don’t.
Right now more people are leaving the church than there are attending church. At least when it comes to younger people such as 18 to 30-year-olds. They don’t feel connected to the church or they feel like they are being “judged” by the rest of the congregation. Some leave because they have friends who have a lifestyle that is frowned upon in Scripture.
When the church doesn’t teach young Christians how to live a Christian lifestyle, then how will they know? It seems that our problem is that we don’t know how to live the Christian lifestyle either. Most of us grew up going to church, especially in the South, and we might have walked down the aisle and gotten ourselves baptized by the time we were teens. But we did it mostly because Mom wanted us to or because our friends were doing the same thing. We didn’t know what conviction was or what the Bible taught about sins and their relationship to us. Most of us were just beginning to notice there was a difference between boys and girls.
In John 3:16-18 it says:
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Life today is hard enough for young people without being told that nearly every thought that you have is sinful. How can you look at a cheerleader without sending your soul to hell? When you are a young man or woman it is nearly impossible.
When most people read “young Christians”, they automatically think of age that is less than twenty years old. I am speaking of anyone from the age of 10 on up who has accepted Jesus as their Savior. Christians who come to know Jesus, regardless of their age, are as Paul described “babes in Christ”. They have just come to have faith in Jesus as their Savior and they need to be taught about Him and the life that they have in Him. Unfortunately, most are brought into the church and baptized and they are never given much more to go on other than read your Bible or make sure to come to Sunday school.
New believers need to have someone who has been a Christian for a while to teach them and help them find their way through the Bible. Explain some of the hard sayings in the Bible if they can and if not then take them to the pastor and try to clear up the “muddy waters”. This is one of the reasons why many people who join the church and say that they believe in Jesus for their salvation don’t stay long, in my opinion. Let them know that God loves them even more than their parents and friends do so that they will be eager to learn more about Him and their relationship to Him.
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:9 KJV https://bible.com/bible/1/2co.12.9.KJV
Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Proverbs 4:23 KJV https://bible.com/bible/1/pro.4.23.KJV
Jesus Christ said “where your heart is where your Treasure is also”.
And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. John 1:5 KJV https://bible.com/bible/1/jhn.1.5.KJV
Amen, Lord, come quickly.
Believe it or not it is death. Every day more than 100 million people die each day from diseases and other ailments as well as from accidents and preventable causes. From the World Economic Forum‘s website: Nearly 150,000 people die each day around the world, according to 2017 data. Of course this year’s data has the COVID-19 death toll included but it is safe to say that there are millions of people dying every year even without this pandemic. According to the data referenced above the number of people dying each year is nearly 5.5 million, regardless of their economic status or country of origin.
Yes, death comes to each of us at some point. Whether it is sooner or later is not up to us but God knows. Hope is only in your individual beliefs and if those beliefs don’t include belief in Jesus for your salvation then death will be an eye-opening experience for most people in the world. God’s Word says that we will all face Him for judgment of our souls after we die and none of us will escape death unless the Lord comes to take His church home before we die.
So…what is your idea about death? All of us have to face it one day. Some of us won’t be here next weekend. Some of us may not live through tomorrow. So have you made sure of your salvation yet? There is a judgment after you die so you can’t say that we “just go poof” because our spirit lives on into eternity. Whether that eternity includes family and friends in a life-giving setting is up to your choices in this life. Because it is up to your choice about accepting salvation or not, which will determine your eternal home.
Jesus’ death and resurrection paid the penalty for ALL of the sins in the world but your eternity is decided by your choice of whether you believe in Him for your salvation or not. It truly is a matter of belief or of unbelief for each of us which decides our future home in eternity. So which will you choose? Life with Jesus or eternal separation from Life? The choice is yours.
He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Isaiah 40:29 KJV https://bible.com/bible/1/isa.40.29.KJV
In Genesis, the Bible speaks of a man who walked with God named Enoch and God took him to glory or heaven without him experiencing death. I don’t expect to be taken any time soon, unless it is time for it, but I do try to walk with God on a daily basis. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am not bragging about my life. I know that I sin quite regularly even when I’m trying not to. But I do ask God to give me strength in my Spirit to at least be able to resist most temptations which come my way. Am I successful in resisting them? Not by a LONG shot! But…I do try.
Living with Jesus as your daily companion is the Christian lifestyle that we are supposed to be living. It is not easy to do although you might think that it is. Enoch did it so why can’t we? He didn’t have all of the distractions that we have today. Cell phones, the Internet, TV shows, movies, etc. can really get your attention away from the study of God’s Word and truly walking daily with Him.
Why do I bring this up today? Because you and I need to be closer to our Lord and Savior now more than ever. Not only is it a good idea but to have a real relationship with someone you have to get to know them. Attending church or a Bible study once or twice a month is not enough. Think about a relationship such as a marriage would work with getting together only once or twice a week and you get my point…it doesn’t work and it could be hazardous to your health.
It is the same with your relationship with Jesus. Being in a real relationship with Him is a learning experience because getting to know Him is only by studying His Word and prayer so that you will recognize His voice when He does speak to you. After giving your heart to Him and allowing the Holy Spirit to come in a truly change your heart is only the first step. Waking up daily and thanking Him for another day to learn about Him and actually following through with the learning part is the part which you have to work at day by day until it becomes a habit.
Many people get caught up in the hype of some “evangelists” who talk of the rewards of being a Christian. They try to sell you a deal and get you to partner with them to be more like Jesus. The truth is that there is no partnership other than being a born-again Child of God and you don’t have to pay a monthly fee for that except for giving your tithe to your local church. This tithe keeps the lights on and the other expenses of the church paid as well as giving the pastor a little bit of cash too. No one is getting rich by preaching and if they are then they are doing it wrong.
God takes care of us without the world’s trappings of wealth and the reward which will be ours in eternity far outweighs any retirement plan here on Earth. Walk with God and His Son, Jesus, and you will have all of the perks which come with knowing your Savior and your Creator as well.