How does the love of God compare?


There is no comparison between God’s love for His creation and for us in all of the Earth. No human can understand God’s love because His love is deep and without limits. He loves us because we are made in His Image and we are to be His servants into eternity. We will not be as slaves in this but we will be willing servants as bondservants in ancient days. They loved their masters and did not wish for freedom and would serve him even if they were to be set free.

God’s love for humanity is fierce and limitless and yet the angels have no understanding of His love for us. Why should God love mankind so? Because He is God and if it pleases Him to love us in this way then He will do it! God is our Creator and has made us be His adopted children, we are not forced to be His but we are voluntarily His children because of His love for us!

So, why do we live as if He doesn’t love us or doesn’t care for us? Mostly because of the fact that we can’t see God even though we can see all of His Creation and it shows His majesty and His creativity and His artistry in Creation! It is His Creation after all! We didn’t have any part in it except when He created us. He knows your talents and abilities and all of your problems. He gave you your talents and your sense of humor and your abilities so He knows more about you than you do about Him.

Why not pick up the Bible and learn more about your Creator and your Savior and get to know Him personally. Then when you hear His voice speaking to you, you will recognize Him and then you can respond accordingly! God wants the best for you but only if you know Him and He knows you can both of you benefit from what is best for you. Give your heart to Jesus and let Him come in and clean up every part of your life so that you can represent Him in every area of your life as well.God is good all the time

A change of heart…


In our Christian lives, we have to have a change of heart or we are not saved at all! When the Holy Spirit comes to you during a service or in your daily work by something which you have heard or read, He touches you and brings to you a message from God. He is telling you that you need Jesus!

“What if I don’t want Jesus?”

Well, that’s your choice but do you have a guarantee that you have X number of days or weeks or years ahead of you? Not one of us has such a guarantee! I may die before finishing this and you may die before you finish reading it if I do finish it! God knows your expiration date, thankfully we don’t!

God in His wisdom and His knowledge of our sinful ways touches us by a word or a thought or sometimes a sermon. Then it is our job, our choice to respond to that touch with, “Yes, Lord, I do need you to mold me and make me after Your will for my life”. Giving your heart to Jesus is not a one time deal nor is it just a “purchase” that you put away and forget about.

It is a beginning, THE beginning of a life-long journey with Jesus until He calls you home! Many of us do allow Him into our hearts and then get frustrated and angry when we can’t understand the Bible enough and we walk away from it and from Him. His disciples spent three years with Him and they didn’t understand most of His wisdom and His teachings until after He was resurrected!

He had to open their minds to the Truth of Who He was while they were learning from Him and to the Truth of Who He is today! If you think that understanding the New Testament is hard, His disciples didn’t have it at all! All that they had was the Old Testament in the scrolls of the Temple. What all of them had learned as children as the Books of Moses and the Prophets and the Writings. Many of us can’t understand much of what is in the Old Testament even though most of it points toward Jesus and His coming.

The only way that you can understand His teachings is to ask Him to show you what they mean during your study time and your prayer time with Him…daily as you walk with Him! As I said this is not like going to the store and picking up a book just one time, this is a daily journey through the Bible every day, learning and praying about what you read and thinking on it while you go about your day.

God has given us His Word and Wisdom for our life and examples of how we should live our life with Him on a daily basis. Your life and mine are a marathon and a journey with God as our Guide and our Teacher through His Word. Isn’t it wonderful that the Creator of all things is willing to teach us about Himself and how we can be His servants! He made this whole cosmos in order for our brains and our comprehension to go “Wow, what an awesome God we serve!”

Give your life to Him so that you can spend eternity gazing into His handiwork and His face and knowing that He loved you before He made any of it! Isn’t that wonderful?

Do you believe?


There are many Christians in the world or rather there are many who claim to be Christians. How many actually are in the world only God knows the answer to that question. In America, there are nearly 70% of the population who claim to be Christians but if that were true every church would be full whenever there was a service.

So, back to the question, do you believe in Jesus Christ for your salvation?

God provided the way for each of us to gain salvation through Him but it is up to us to make the decision to believe in Jesus for our salvation when we feel convicted of our own sinful lives. Knowing that your righteousness is not good enough to get you into heaven and that you only gain access through belief in Jesus Christ for your salvation.

In Acts 4:12, Peter exclaims: 12 “Salvation exists in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”

So, do you believe in Him as your Savior? Some who read this probably do believe in Jesus as their Savior but there may be many who think that He was just a man and a prophet and nothing more. In the Old Testament, there are over 300 prophecies concerning His birth and His ministry and He fulfilled them all! In the book of Micah, written between ~700 years prior to His birth it was foretold that He would be born in Bethlehem.

For a man to fulfill the prophecies about Jesus, even a few of them would be miraculous, but He fulfilled every one of them. Jesus is the Second Person of the Trinity and the Son of God, there is no other name by which we can be saved and sanctified for our sins. If you don’t know Him yet, as your Savior, I implore you to seek Him with the utmost urgency because the time grows short and He will be coming for those who believe in Him soon.

I have no idea when His return will be but all of the prophetic signs have been fulfilled and the world is in turmoil just as He said it would be in the last days. Don’t turn away from Him or His call on your life because when this life is over there are no second chances to gain your salvation through belief in Him.

IamtheWay

 

 

Where Love is


This word is used so flippantly in our world today until it seems to be almost meaningless. Is love still what it was many years ago? Is it just a word which we say but really don’t mean? In many ways it is both of these and so much more. Consider the definition found in 1 Corinthians 13:

1 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing. 4 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, 5 does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, 6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

8 Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part; 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. 11 When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. 12 For now, we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. 13 But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love. 

God is the ultimate definition of Love because it was His Love which sent Jesus to redeem mankind from our own sinful ways, to give us a chance to be pardoned and atoned for so we could be worthy of attaining entry into Heaven. This we can do through belief in Jesus and no other pathway or other works is needed so that we can be saved!

God made this possible so that, while we were yet sinners, our sins were already forgiven and paid for and all we need to do is accept Jesus as our Savior and repent of our former sinful ways and follow Him. Today, this seems to be a hard teaching for many but if you want to live into eternity, it is the only way. No other religion in the world gives you access to God in Heaven regardless of the teaching you may hear!

Seek out a Bible teacher that is truly teaching from God’s Word and then pray for your salvation and accept Jesus as your Savior. Then your heart will be changed and you will be able to follow Him as your Savior and Lord!

Encouragement


Son of encouragement. That is what Barnabas was called in the book of Acts, in fact, that is what the name means. His actual name was Joseph and he was from Cyprus. He was very prominent in the early church. Why do I mention him here? Because each of us needs an Encourager. Yes, the Lord is also an Encourager and gives us the encouragement we need through the reading of His Word. So, why do we need another to give us more?

Because we have all encountered setbacks and problems along the way. Sometimes it is because of depression or other things which are “bringing us down” and we need someone to cheer us up. We are so bombarded by updates and news today in this world of 24/7 connected devices until it is hard to make sense of it all. Decompression and relaxation doesn’t happen when we take a vacation anymore. Because we are never disconnected from our phones or our tablets or laptops!

God did not intend for us to live our lives like this every day! Years ago the prediction was that computers would make our lives easier and our work would be less. That didn’t happen at all! Now that we have smartphones, which amount to pocket-sized computers, we are never away from news and work-related content! Even when we are in places where there is limited service we feel as if we are in danger because we can’t contact someone or be contacted.

So a bit of encouragement is needed especially today and particularly now. It keeps us going when the times get a bit choppy with troubles and all of the stress which we have in this world. Just listen to someone who is hurting or in need of a friend, don’t offer advice unless they ask for it. Why do I say this? Because it is very likely that you haven’t been in their shoes before. I know that many of us have had loved ones to die or we have gotten divorced or even lost a job, but some people are going through more than one stressor at a time. So..be gentle.

God is there for all of us and He does comfort us in all of our troubles and situations, but sometimes it just takes a sympathetic ear or a shoulder to lean on or even cry on. Nobody can handle all of life’s troubles without God or someone to support them and just be there when things aren’t going the way they should. Yes, Jesus is nearer than any person could be, but until He is here in the flesh we need a friend at times. Try to be that friend because there will come a time when you need one and if you were never there for someone then who will be there for you?

Are you walking in faith?


John, the disciple of Jesus, wrote the smallest book in the Bible and yet it is a most profound and humbling book because it convicts us who are not walking in His Truth and shows us where our faith should be placed.

2 John 1

Greeting from the Elder

(3 John 1:1-4)

1 The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth; 2 For the truth’s sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us forever. 3 Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.

Walking in the Truth (John 8:31-41)

4 I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father. 5 And now I beseech thee, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another. 6 And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.

Beware of Deceivers

7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an Antichrist. 8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. 9 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. 10 If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: 11 For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

Final Greetings

12 Having many things to write unto you, I would not write with paper and ink: but I trust to come unto you, and speak face to face, that our joy may be full. 13 The children of thy elect sister greet thee. Amen.

GodsBlessingThe second or third smallest book of the Bible but very profound, in wisdom and truth from the only disciple which died of natural causes also known as old age.

God blessed John with a ministry which spanned the known world around him at the time. Since he was also one of the youngest disciples he was able to go and tell others about his Lord and Savior. He was also the shepherd of a number of churches before his death at the end of the first century.

John wrote and testified that Jesus was the Light of the World, not because of hearsay but because he had lived and walked with Jesus during His ministry. John was a dedicated disciple, fully committed to His Lord and Savior and He walked with Him while His time on Earth was fulfilled and He took the message of the gospel with him wherever he went later in life.

John’s exhortation to the lady and her house is the way that he greeted another worker for the faith and this letter was to encourage her until she should meet her risen Lord. Truly, it is the same with us. We are to stay true to our faith in Him until He comes or until we are called home to be with Him. What does this letter encourage us to do in light of where we are in the history of the world?

Mainly, to be steadfast in our walk with Jesus. Keeping to the faith and taking it and our testimony with us wherever we may go regardless of the time we may have left on this Earth. Because we don’t know how much time we have regardless of our age or health. It could be weeks, months or years until our date comes to meet Jesus or until He comes to call each of us home.

Your life and your testimony are important because your experience in this life is unique, just as your salvation is unique. Nobody else has had your experience or your successes and your failures, and God can use those to bring a specific message to someone, probably someone that only you can possibly reach. Your mission in this life is to serve God in whatever capacity that He asks you to serve in. It could be as a teacher at a high school or a Sunday school teacher. Maybe you are friends with a certain person that God wants to reach and only you can do that.

But…you won’t know for sure if you don’t step out in faith and use your testimony to bring Jesus’ message to at least one person. Then tomorrow see if you can find someone else to talk to about what Jesus has done for you. It doesn’t have to be a daily thing, but considering how much Jesus gave to save you and put you in this place…why not?

What is the difference?


OnlyJesusIn the world today there are many, many religions and their differences can be confusing, even baffling to someone who doesn’t practice one or another. Some are looking for a stress-free environment or a way to live as stress-free as possible. Others are thankful for just living one day at a time, while some religions seem to worship everything around them.

Then, there is Christianity which worships one God which has three persons. That doesn’t mean that there are multiple gods in Christian worship, the three in One serve the same purpose in different ways.

God the Father is our Creator and the Creator of everything in the universe. God the Son was sent to Earth to reconcile mankind’s sinful ways so that we could come to the Father through the sacrifice of the Son, Jesus. God the Holy Spirit has a job which includes the other two, but He is Spiritual in form and function. Which makes His function kinda hard to describe. The Spirit or Holy Ghost as He has been called allows our minds to understand and learn the Truths of Scripture when we study and read it. He is also the One Who convicts your spirit of the need for salvation if you aren’t saved through Jesus already.

If you could be physically in the room with God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, they would look alike but different. Similar to being in the room with triplets. They look the same but there are subtle differences which are seen and understood but which are also hard to detect. Am I making this distinction worse or understandable? If you saw the movie, The Shack, you get a little bit of the differences and similarities that I am talking about.

None of the other religions claim to actually get you into heaven, except Christianity. They call it paradise or nirvana or oneness. Jesus even called it Paradise once on the cross when He was talking to the thief who asked to be remembered when He came into His Kingdom. Heaven would and will be a true Paradise because there is no death, no disease, no need for any of our man-made things to feel better because in the Presence of God nothing can hurt or harm us!

We will be in the dwelling place of God Himself and since He is the manifestation of Love and Life, there will be nothing which can take those blessings from us ever again! The descriptions of Heaven which some have written about or painted are so much beyond our ability to put into words or even to paint them with the colors or the words that we have until it truly blows your imagination apart. The mind has not seen nor can the imagination fathom what Heaven looks or feels like because we have nothing to compare it to.

A life lived in honor of and following Jesus is one which is never boring or without results which will burn into eternity. God loves us and since He gave His Son to pay the penalty for our sins, then we should give our lives to Him as a living sacrifice so that others may know His blessings and His grace.

 

What happened on Easter?


The story which is celebrated in much of the world has to do with pagan ritual. Eggs and rabbits and things like that. These have nothing to do with our risen Savior.

Jesus told His disciples that He would rise again on the third day. Many people disbelieve that story today, even in the church. I mean, how can you manage to get three days between Friday and Sunday? Going by Jewish calendars and tradition it is simple. A day begins at sunrise and ends at sunset, at least to us. But, to Jewish people who lived in Jesus’ day, the next day begins at sundown on the day before. So, when the soldiers arrested Jesus in the garden on early Friday morning, part of that day had already passed by.

The sunrise brought the priests and the High Priest before Pilate to accuse Jesus and He was flogged, but that wasn’t enough. They wanted a crucifixion and the Sabbath began at sundown. From about the third hour until the ninth hour Jesus was on the cross, that would be 9 am until 3 pm for us. Counting from sunrise to sunset is the timing that they used because the preparation for the Sabbath had to begin at sundown, counting as the next day.

empty_tomb11He laid in the tomb from just before sundown on Friday, all day on the Sabbath, and most of the day on the first day of the week on Sunday. So Friday, Saturday, and Sunday are three days!

So…what happened on Sunday morning at around sunrise? A miracle to those who witnessed it for sure! A bright light which was brighter than the Sun in its strength, which pierced even the cracks around the rock which covered the entrance to the tomb. The stone which had been rolled over the opening of the tomb and sealed with the Roman seal was rolled away.

We don’t know what the soldiers saw at that moment. They could’ve seen the risen Jesus in His glory or maybe an angel, possibly two angels who told the disciples and Mary that He has risen just as He had told them that He would. I want to believe that those soldiers who were guarding the tomb saw Him in His glory and likely believed that He was the Savior, the King of the Jews and their Messiah. But, until we get to Heaven we will not know for sure what they saw or what they believed.

Our Savior is alive and is at the right hand of Power on High! There is no other name by which we must be saved to be in His Presence! The only requirement is that we believe in Him and in what was written about Him in the Bible, ask Him for your forgiveness and repent of your old way of life and follow Him daily. That is our job, our responsibility as believers and as Christians! To tell others about our Savior Who died to give them the ability to become Christians and partake in His Kingdom too. No amount of money or work to do to be eligible for salvation, just believe in Him.

The Book of Life


What is the Book of Life? I am writing about the Lamb’s Book of Life, written from before the foundation of the world. God has placed each person’s name there who will accept Jesus as their Savior. Because He knows who will and who will not accept Him. The offer of salvation is given to all, but God knows who will accept it and who will not.

God has always known the names of those who will accept Jesus as their Savior. Now, I know that some of those who read this may not believe in something called “predestination”, I don’t either but God still knows which of us will accept Jesus. The big words and doctrines of our denominational associations actually are not written in Heaven. Those are man-made ideas and “laws” of which few are found in Scripture.

IamtheWayWhy am I writing this today? Because it is needed! You and I and anyone else who reads this blog need to know that God has always known which person will accept His way of life and who will follow Jesus. None of your ideas or doctrines which are written in the bylaws of your church are written in God’s handwriting! Many of them are based on what we think we have learned from reading His Word, but you don’t find all of them in the Bible.

While it is true that the word “predestined” is in the writings of Paul, the meaning of that is what God said years before Paul ever put it down. In the book of Jeremiah God told him that He knew him before he was born and before he was formed in the womb. He also said that He (God) had ordained him to be a prophet at that time. God determines who will be His prophets or His disciples and He knew us before the Garden was created!

It is the same with the Lamb’s Book of Life! He has known for many thousands of years whose name would be in it and those who would not be in it. Even though Jesus came and  paid the penalty for ALL of us to receive salvation and have access to eternity, God and by extension, Jesus already knew which person would accept Him as Savior. Our Creator is in control and He knows your heart and mine before we even realize Who He is.

God wants all of humanity to know Him as God, but many outside of the organized church just don’t want to know Him. They have their own idea of who their god is and it doesn’t fit with the God of the Old or New Testament. I am not speaking of any specific denomination in reference to an “organized church”, but those who do not attend church it seems they refuse to listen or attend a service. You will never know Who God is until you read His Word and feel the conviction of His Spirit in your life to know that you are a sinner according to His holiness.

One lie, one thought, just one is all that it takes to separate us from God but the absolute sin which will keep you from Heaven is not accepting Jesus as your Savior. All of the sins of the world are sins as far as God is concerned, whether you consider them to be significant or not. The ONE sin which condemns you to an eternity in hell is not accepting Jesus as your Savior and repenting from your old ways and follow Him in your life from that point on!

What can I do?


In our walk with Jesus, we sometimes wonder if there is anything which I can do to have an impact for the Kingdom of God? Some people may not consider this, but I feel that some really do want to have an impact for God. So..is there anything which we can do to bring people into God’s family? Yes and no actually.

Yes, we can do a lot for the Kingdom of God in that we can live our lives in Christ so that others will notice that our life is…well, different. Can we do this on our own? No, we can’t! Jesus said “Apart from Me you can do nothing”; and He was right! Without Him in our heart and the Holy Spirit’s guiding influence on a daily basis, we can do nothing which will make an impact for the Kingdom of God.

Living for Jesus and His Kingdom on a daily basis is possible only if you have the Holy Spirit living within you, changing you into a likeness of Jesus. Reading the Bible and studying His Word will only take you so far and without the Holy Spirit giving you the wisdom from His Word, even that won’t mean much or accomplish much at all! God has given us much of His Wisdom in His Word, but without the Spirit teaching you through it, revealing that wisdom to you, much of His Word will remain just words and nothing more.

Does God use people or circumstances to bring His will to completion?

Yes, He does and sometimes those people are not Christians but they have been brought to a place where God can use their influence for His purposes. We are not puppets or automatons but He has used kings and priests and even a donkey to bring His will to bear on history and in the lives of those who He deems important to His purposes. Since God exists outside of time, He can see the future and the past as easily as we can view our daily lives. He can readily discern a person’s impact for good or evil and cause them to be useful in His plans.

This is why He already has the workings of our future laid out, we just don’t know it yet. Is there anything which we can do in this timeline in which we live? Yes, but we must be willing to be still and know that He is God and let His Spirit guide us each day toward that goal, His goal, whatever that may be. If you try to get ahead of Him or do things outside of His will and purpose for your life, He will let you but it will likely fail.

Living without Jesus in your heart and allowing His Spirit to guide you in life is a foolish way for a Christian to live, because if He isn’t in your heart then you aren’t a Christian at all. Your walk with Him is a daily fellowship and one which needs to be nurtured and kept in sync with your reading of His Word. Your effectiveness as an ambassador for His Kingdom depends upon your walk with Him and your closeness in relationship to Him. If you are trying to do these things without depending on Him then your walk will be like a blind man without a guide, stumbling and falling more than you are walking.

Make sure of your relationship with Jesus and your belief in Him before your life here is over.