Saturday, July 22, 2017

REPENTANCE: TURN TO GOD FROM YOUR SIN

BOTH ISRAEL AND THE CHURCH ARE CALLED TO REPENTANCE


*  Matthew 9:11-13 - "And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto His disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?  But when Jesus heard that, He said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.  But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice:  for I AM NOT COME TO CALL THE RIGHTEOUS, BUT SINNERS TO REPENTANCE."
  
*  Mark 1:14-15 - "Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, and saying, THE TIME IS FULFILLED, AND THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS AT HAND:  REPENT YE, AND BELIEVE THE GOSPEL."
 
*  Luke 13:1-5 - "There were present at that season some that told Him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices.  And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things?  I tell you, Nay:  but, EXCEPT YE REPENT, YE SHALL ALL LIKEWISE PERISH.  Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem?  I tell you, Nay: but, EXCEPT YE REPENT, YE SHALL ALL LIKEWISE PERISH."


*  Luke 15:10 - "Likewise, I say unto you, THERE IS JOY IN THE PRESENCE OF THE ANGEL OF GOD OVER ONE SINNER THAT REPENTETH."

*  Luke 24:45-47 - "Then opened He their understanding, that they might understand the Scriptures, and said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:  and that REPENTANCE AND REMISSION OF SINS SHOULD BE PREACHED IN HIS NAME AMONG ALL NATIONS, BEGINNING AT JERUSALEM."


*  Acts 2:38 - "Then Peter said unto them, REPENT AND BE BAPTIZED EVERY ONE OF YOU IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, AND YE SHALL RECEIVE THE GIFT OF THE HOLY GHOST."
 
*  Acts 3:18-19 - "But those things, which God before had showed by the mouth of all His prophets, that Christ should suffer, He hath so fulfilled.  REPENT YE THEREFORE, AND BE CONVERTED, THAT YOUR SINS MAY BE BLOTTED OUT, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord."


*  Acts 11:17-18 - "Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as He did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?  When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, THEN HATH GOD ALSO TO THE GENTILES GRANTED REPENTANCE UNTO LIFE."


*  Acts 17:29-30 - "Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.  And the times of this ignorance God winked at [the Greek ὑπεροράω (hyperoraō), means "chose to overlook"]; BUT NOW COMMANDETH ALL MEN EVERYWHERE TO REPENT."


*  Acts 20:20-21 - "And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have showed you, and have taught you publicly, and from house to house, testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, REPENTANCE TOWARD GOD, AND FAITH TOWARD OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST."
  
*  Romans 2:3 - "...despisest thou the riches of His goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that THE GOODNESS OF GOD LEADETH THEE TO REPENTANCE?"

*  2 Peter 3:9 - "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering toward us, NOT WILLING THAT ANY SHOULD PERISH, BUT THAT ALL SHOULD COME TO REPENTANCE."

Friday, July 21, 2017

RELIGION TRIES TO WORK FOR THAT WHICH GOD HAS ALREADY PROVIDED

"GRACE" - Undeserved, unmerited favor; the free gift of salvation based upon God's character and not our own; God's Riches At Christ's Expense!


*  John 1:1, 14, 17 - "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God....And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth....For the Law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ."


*  Acts 15:7-11 - "And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them, Men and brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the Word of the Gospel, and believe.  And God, Who knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as He did unto us; and put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.  Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?  But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they."


*  Romans3:20-24 - "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.  But now the righteousness of God (apart from) the Law is manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets; even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:  for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus."


*  Ephesians 2:4-9 - "But God, Who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved); and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:  that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves:  it is the gift of God:  not of works, lest any man should boast."


*  Titus 3:4-7 - "But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Whom He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; that being justified by His grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life."

BECAUSE SALVATION CANNOT BE EARNED, BUT IS A GIFT FROM GOD,
BELIEVERS SHOULD EXHIBIT TWO CHARACTERISTICS:
GRATITUDE TOWARD GOD AND HUMILITY TOWARD MAN!

LET THE REDEEMED OF THE LORD SAY SO!

Psalm 107:2 - "Let the redeemed of the LORD say so...."

*  Psalm 7:17 - "I will praise the LORD according to His righteousness:  and will sing praise to the name of the LORD most high."
*  Psalm 33:1-3 - "Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous:  for praise is comely for the upright.  Praise the LORD with harp:  sing unto Him with the psaltery and an instrument of ten strings.  Sing unto Him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise."
*  Psalm 107:8 - "Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!"
*  Psalm 109:30 - "I will greatly praise the LORD with my mouth; yea, I will praise Him among the multitude."
*  Psalm 111:1 - "Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation."
*  Psalm 115:18 - "But we will bless the LORD from this time forth and forevermore. Praise the LORD."
*  Psalm 117:1-2 - "O praise the LORD, all ye nations: praise Him, all ye people.  For His merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the LORD endureth forever.  Praise ye the LORD."
*  Psalm 118:19 - "Open to me the gates of righteousness: I will go into them, and I will praise the LORD."
*  Psalm 135:3 - "Praise the LORD; for the LORD is good: sing praises unto His name; for it is pleasant."
*  Psalm 146:1-2 - "Praise ye the LORD Praise the LORD, O my soul.  While I live will I praise the LORD:  I will while I have any being."
*  Psalm 147:12 - "Praise the LORD, O Jerusalem; praise thy God, O Zion."
*  Psalm 148:12-13 - "Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children:  let them praise the name of the LORD:  for His name alone is excellent; His glory is above the earth and heaven."
*  Psalm 150:1-6 - "Praise ye the LORD.  Praise God in His sanctuary:  praise Him in the firmament of His power.  Praise Him for His mighty acts:  praise Him according to His excellent greatness.  Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet:  praise Him with the psaltery and harp.  Praise Him with the timbrel and dance:  praise Him with stringed instruments and organs.  Praise Him upon the loud cymbals:  praise Him upon the high sounding cymbals.  Let everything that hath breath praise the LORD.  Praise ye the LORD."

Revelation 19:5 - "And a voice came out of the throne, saying, 
Praise our God, all ye His servants, and ye that fear Him, both small and great."

THE TWO HALVES OF DANIEL'S SEVENTIETH "WEEK"

DANIEL 9:24-27 - "Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for Himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary [Note:  Rome destroyed them in A.D.70]; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate." [Note:  We know that "week" represents a period of seven years, based upon the various ways it is described elsewhere in Revelation Chapters 11 and 12 below. This period is also known as "the Time of Jacob's Trouble" - Jeremiah 30:7; and "the Tribulation - Matthew 24:29]


THE FIRST HALF OF THE TRIBULATION - THE TWO WITNESSES
"And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months (Rev. 13:5). And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days (Rev. 12:6), clothed in sackcloth. These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth. And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed. These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will. And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit (Rev. 9:1, 2, 11; 11:7; 17:8; 20:1, 3) shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified. And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth. And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them. And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them" (Revelation 11:1-12).

THE SECOND HALF OF THE TRIBULATION - SATAN'S DOMINATION
"And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: and she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered. And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.  And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to His throne. And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days (Rev. 11:3). And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.  And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child. And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time (Dan.7:25; 12:7), from the face of the serpent. And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth. And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ" (Revelation 12:1-17).

THE CHURCH WILL NOT BE HERE:  SATAN DECEIVES THE WHOLE WORLD

Thursday, July 20, 2017

DOES YOUR LIFE SHINE, OR CAST SHADOWS?

There are two kinds of people who say they are believers in Jesus Christ:  
(1) Born-again Christians - Individuals who live their lives in gratitude; according to the leading of the Holy Spirit, according to God's Word - their light shatters the darkness; and 
(2) Professing Christians - Individuals who live their lives according to the flesh, and whose lives not only fail to shine so that the lost are drawn to Jesus, but they live their lives in such a way as to block the light from reaching those needing to see it:  they themselves, cast shadows!

RELIGIOUS WORKS CAST SHADOWS!
*  Romans 4:2-5 - "For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the Scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.  Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness."
*  Ephesians 2:8-9 - "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  Not of works, lest any man should boast."
*  Titus 3:5-7 - "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost. Who He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; that being justified by His grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life."

THE FATHER'S WORKS PRODUCE LIGHT!
*  Matthew 5:14-16 - "Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father Who is in heaven."
*  Ephesians 2:10 - "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."
*  Philippians 1:6; 2:13 - "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ....For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure."
*  Titus 3:8 - "This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men."


HOW TO TELL THE DIFFERENCE!
*  Matthew 7:16-20 - "Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?  Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.  A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit....Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."
*  Galatians 5:16-26 - "This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.  For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other....Now THE WORKS OF THE FLESH are manifest, which are these; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.  But THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no Law."


THEREFORE
*  Galatians 5:13-16 - "For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.  For all the Law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself....This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh."

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

THROUGH FAITH IN THE RISEN CHRIST, WE HAVE FORGIVENESS OF SINS

*  Acts 5:30-31 - "The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, Whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.  Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins."

*  Acts 13:30, 33, 37-38 - "But God raised Him from the dead....God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that He hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the Second Psalm, Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee....But He, Whom God raised again, saw no corruption.  Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this Man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins."

*  Acts 26:13-18 - "At midday, O king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and them which journeyed with me.  And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me?  It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.  And I said, Who art Thou, Lord? And He said, I AM JESUS Whom thou persecutest.  But rise, and stand upon thy feet: for I have appeared unto thee for this purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both of these things which thou hast seen, and of those things in the which I will appear unto thee; delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee, to open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in Me."

*  Ephesians 1:3-7 - "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:  according as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love: having predestined us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the Beloved.  In Whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace."

*  Colossians 1:9-14 - "For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, unto all patience and long-suffering with joyfulness; giving thanks unto the Father, Who hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:  Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of His Dear Son:  in Whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins...."

1 John 2:12 
"I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for His name's sake."

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

REVELATION: THE ORDER OF EVENTS

I cannot tell you the number of times I have heard people say, "The Book of Revelation is too hard to understand!"  And while I agree that no one truly comprehends it all, I still believe there are "clues" throughout that help believers "walk with John as his vision unfolds."  First, there is the Key Verse which reveals the order of events John sees.  Revelation 1:19 reads: "Write the things which thou hast seen (past tense), and the things which are (present tense), and the things which shall be hereafter (future tense)."  Chapter One reveals what John had already witnessed.  Chapters Two and Three describe the Church Age.  The rest of Revelation speaks of things which shall occur after the Rapture of the Church, as pictured in Chapter Four verse one:  "After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter." [For more on the Rapture, see:  Jn. 14:1-3; 1 Thes. 4:13-18; etc.]


That there is an unfolding of God's timeline of future prophecy, can be seen by these statements:
*  Revelation 7:1 - "And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree."
*  Revelation 7:9 - "After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands."
*  Revelation 15:5 - "And after that I looked, and, behold, the temple of the tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened."
*  Revelation 18:1 - "And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory."
*  Revelation 19:1 - "And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God."
*  Revelation 20:3 - "And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season."


Following the Rapture of the Church (Rev. 4:1), Chapters Five through Eighteen describe the seven-year Tribulation, a.k.a. "Daniel's Seventieth Week" (Dan. 9:27), and "the Time of Jacob's Trouble" (Jer. 30:7), which reveal that the Tribulation focuses upon the nation of  Israel. Chapter Nineteen describes Christ's Second Coming; Chapter Twenty reveals Christ's Millennial Kingdom and the Great White Throne Judgment.  And last but certainly the greatest revelation, Chapters Twenty-One and Twenty-Two speak of our eternal fellowship with Almighty God! 


Note:  It is always wise to compare Scripture with Scripture, when interpreting God's Word.  For other passages which shed light on Revelation, one should look at Daniel 9:24-27; Matthew 24:1-51; Mark 13:1-37; and Luke 21:5-36.  Remember, the Book of Revelation is the only book in Scripture that promises a blessing to those who read it, and to those who hear it read!

BIBLE PROPHECY WILL ALL BE LITERALLY FULFILLED!

PROPHECIES CONCERNING CHRIST'S FIRST COMING 
WERE LITERALLY FULFILLED!

*  Luke 24:25-27; 44 - "Then (Jesus) said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:  Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into His glory? And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself....And He said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the Law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms, concerning Me."

*  John 1:45-46 - "Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found Him, of Whom Moses in the Law, and the Prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph. And Nathanael said unto him, Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth? Philip saith unto him, Come and see."

*  Acts 3:14-18 - "But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; and killed the Prince of Life, Whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses. And His name through faith in His name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by Him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all. And now, brethren, I (know) that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.  But those things, which God before had showed by the mouth of all His Prophets, that Christ should suffer, He hath so fulfilled."

*  Romans 1:1-4 - "Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an Apostle, separated unto the Gospel of God, which He had promised before by His Prophets in the Holy Scriptures, concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, Who was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; and declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of Holiness, by the resurrection from the dead."

*  Hebrews 1:1-3 - "God, Who at sundry times and in divers manners spoke in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son, Whom He hath appointed heir of all things, by Whom also He made the worlds; Who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His Person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high!"

PROPHECIES CONCERNING CHRIST'S SECOND COMING 
SHALL ALSO BE LITERALLY FULFILLED!

*  John 14:1-3 - "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also."

*  1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 - "For this we say unto you by the Word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not (precede) them who 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 who 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."

*  Revelation 22:20 - "He Who testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus."

Monday, July 17, 2017

A LETTER OF CONCERN TO MY FAMILY!

A letter to all the members of my family,

       I am sure every single one of you desires to spend eternity in heaven.  Not only that, but I am equally certain that you desire your children, and their children, to be there with you.  That being said, I have to ask you this question:  exactly what priority does Jesus Christ have in your personal life?  After all, He is your Creator (John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16-17; Hebrews 1:1-2)!  Because He willingly died to pay for your sins, and His Father raised Him from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:3-4; etc.), He has earned the right to be the Lord and Master of your life (John 13:13)!

       If you truly believe this, then everyone who knows you should be aware of it; your life should be seen by the world as being "peculiar" (Titus 2:14; 1 Peter 2:9)!  They ought to recognize you are different from those whose lives are filled with "adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God" (Galatians 5:19-21). When they describe you, they ought to use words like "love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance" (Galatians 5:22-23)!

       Don't get me wrong here; born again believers still struggle with sin, but the key word here is "struggle!"  They hate sin; they hate their own weakness, and they continually seek the Lord's help in overcoming the temptations we face everyday!  The apostle Paul wrote of his struggle in Romans 7:15-25.  Note that he didn't say he used to struggle with sin, but the entire passage is in present tense!  None of us is perfect, but those who love the Lord, strive to live lives that please Almighty God!  We will not be entirely victorious until we see Jesus face-to-face (1 John 3:1-2), but we long for that day to come and free us from our spiritual weakness!

       Now that being said, I wonder what each of you is doing to ensure your spouse, your children, and you grow in faith in the Lord?  What part does fellowship with other believers play in your lives? Do you teach your children the Bible stories that will help them grow to trust in Jesus as their Lord and Savior?  Do they see the Lord as seated on the "throne of your heart?"  I made a lot of mistakes in my life, but one thing I can say without hesitation:  Judy and I took you to church, to vacation Bible school, and we sacrificed to make sure you were able to attend Christian schools.  Yes, I know we failed to live as role models, but you saw us trying!  My question is, do your children have a Christian education?  Do they get to attend church and Bible school?  And what about their children; what place does faith have in their lives?  It is not too late to set them down and admit you, like Judy and me, failed to do the very best we could.  It is not too late to get your priorities right.  But it is getting close!  Whether you believe it or not, the same Jesus Who fulfilled all the prophecies concerning His coming to serve as the Lamb of God, is coming soon to fulfill the rest of the Bible prophecies as the King of kings, and Lord of lords; the Lion of the tribe of Judah!

Do you want to go to heaven?  Do you want your kids to go?  Then turn your lives over to Jesus!

SALVATION CAN NOT BE EARNED - IT IS A GIFT FROM GOD!





THE PROBLEM WITH RELIGIONS - THEY TRY TO EARN SALVATION


*  Romans 10:2-3 (KJV) - "...they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God."
*  Romans 10:2-3 (NLT) - "I know what enthusiasm they have for God, but it is misdirected zeal. For they don’t understand God’s way of making people right with Himself. Refusing to accept God’s way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God...."


SALVATION IS NOT BY RELIGIOUS WORKS - IT IS A GIFT TO BELIEVERS


*  Romans 5:15-18; 6:23 (KJV) - "...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. And 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. 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. Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life....For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."




*  Romans 5:15-18; 6:23 (NLT) - "...there is a great difference between Adam’s sin and God’s gracious gift. For the sin of this one man, Adam, brought death to many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and His gift of forgiveness to many through this other man, Jesus Christ. And the result of God’s gracious gift is very different from the result of that one man’s sin. For Adam’s sin led to condemnation, but God’s free gift leads to our being made right with God, even though we are guilty of many sins. For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and His gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ. Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone....For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord."


*  Galatians 2:16 (KJV) - "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified."
*  Galatians 2:16 (NLT) - "Yet we know that a person is made right with God by faith in Jesus Christ, not by obeying the law. And we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we might be made right with God because of our faith in Christ, not because we have obeyed the law.


*  Ephesians 2:9-10 (KJV) - "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast."
*  Ephesians 2:9-10 (NLT) - "God saved you by His grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it."

Sunday, July 16, 2017

MY GREATEST FAILURE AS A CHRISTIAN


As I approach my "graduation," my biggest regret is that I failed as the Christian "patriarch" in my own family!  I am very troubled by the life-choices of some of my children, and my grandchildren. While a few are certain they are born again, their lives seem to be totally focused upon their own will instead of the Lord's!  They make decisions that are not in harmony with the will of God as it is expressed in His Word, and even those who do consider His will for their lives, seem to excuse their words and behavior by saying, "nobody's perfect - everyone, even Christians, still sin!"  Rather than try not to sin, they accept it as a way of life, they say that it is totally understood by God - after all, He knew what their lives would be like when He "saved them."
And yet, the Apostle Paul used the phrase "God forbid" fourteen times, in his letters to believers!  In Romans 6:1-2, 14-15 (KJV); he wrote:
"What shall we say then?  Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?  God forbid.  How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?  For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.  What then?  Shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace?  God forbid."
Here is what Paul wrote to believers in Ephesians 5:1-11, 15-20 (NLT): 
"Immitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are His dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered Himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God. Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God. You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.  Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey Him.  Don’t participate in the things these people do. For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true. Carefully determine what pleases the Lord. Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them....So be careful how you live. Don't live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Don't act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.  Don't be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."


Saturday, July 15, 2017

BY HIS GRACE, WE ARE THE BODY OF CHRIST

*  Matthew 26:26 - "And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is My body."


*  Romans 7:4 - "Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the Law by the Body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to Him Who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God."


*  1 Corinthians 10:16-17 - "The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ?  The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?  For we being many are one bread, and one body:  for we are all partakers of that one bread."


*  1 Corinthians 12:12-27 - "For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body:  so also is Christ.  For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.  For the body is not one member, but many.  If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?  And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?  If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing?  If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?  But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased Him.  And if they were all one member, where were the body?  But now are they many members, yet but one body.  And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee:  nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.  Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary:  and those members of the body, which we think to be less honorable, upon these we bestow more abundant honor; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness.  For our comely parts have no need:  but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honor to that part which lacked:  that there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.  And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honored, all the members rejoice with it.  NOW ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular."


*  Ephesians 1:22-23 - "And hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be the head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him that filleth all in all."


*  Ephesians 4:4-16 - "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, Who is above all, and through all, and in you all.  But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.  Wherefore He saith, When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.  Now that He ascended, what is it but that He also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?  He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that He might fill all things.  And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  until we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:  that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, Who is the head, even Christ:  from Whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love."


*  Ephesians 5:29-30 - "For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:  for we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones."


*  Colossians 1:18-22 - "And He is the head of the body, the church:  Who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things He might have the preeminence.  For it pleased the Father that in Him should all fullness dwell; and, having made peace through the blood of His cross, by Him to reconcile all things unto Himself; by Him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.  And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath He reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in His sight."


*  Hebrews 10:19-20 - "Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which He hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh."



Friday, July 14, 2017

WHY DID JESUS COME AS A MAN?

HIS FATHER SENT HIM TO OFFER US SALVATION!


*  John 3:13-17 - "And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but He that came down from heaven, even the Son of man who is in heaven.  And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:  that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.  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.  For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved."


HE CAME WILLINGLY TO DIE IN OUR PLACE!


*  Philippians 2:5-11 - "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:  but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name:  that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."


WHAT MUST WE DO TO BE SAVED FROM OUR SIN?  BELIEVE THE GOSPEL!


*  John 1:10-13 - "He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not.  He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.  But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name:  who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God."
*  Romans 1:16-17 - "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.  For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith:  as it is written, The just shall live by faith."
*  1 Corinthians 15:1-4 - "Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved....For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures."

JESUS IS COMING BACK: 
ONCE TO GATHER BELIEVERS TO HIMSELF,
AND THEN AGAIN TO RULE AND REIGN IN HIS KINGDOM HERE ON EARTH!
[John 14:1-3; 1 Corinthians 15:50-54; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Revelation 19:11 - 20:15]







Thursday, July 13, 2017

GOD IS NOT MOCKED - ARE YOU A BELIEVER? SHOW ME!


*  Matthew 5:16 - "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father Who is in heaven."


*  Matthew 7:15-23 - "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.  Ye shall know them by their fruits.  Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?  Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.  A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.  Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.  Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.  Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father Who is in heaven.  Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name?  And in Thy name have cast out devils?  And in Thy name done many wonderful works?  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work iniquity."


*  Galatians 5:19-25 - "Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things (actively, continually, habitually practice such things) shall not inherit the kingdom of God.  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance:  against such there is no law.  And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit."


*  2 Timothy 2:19 - "Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His.  And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity."


*  James 1:21-24 - "Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness (abundance of wickedness), and receive with meekness the engrafted Word, which is able to save your souls.  But be ye doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.  For if any be a hearer of the Word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:  for he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was."

THE WORK OF GOD IN OUR SALVATION

  1.  The Father sent His Son to die for our sins (Jn. 3:16; 12:33; 1 Cor. 15:3-4)!


  2.  The Father (and The Son) draw us to faith in the risen Jesus (Jn. 6:44; 12:32)!

  3.  The Holy Spirit convinces us of our need for the Savior (Jn. 16:8-11)!


  4.  The Holy Spirit moves God's children to share the Gospel with us (Jn. 3:3-8; Rom. 10:14-15)!

  5.  We believe the Gospel message and by faith we are saved (Rom. 10:17; Eph. 2:8-9)!


  6.  We are indwelt by the Holy Spirit at the moment of faith (Rom 8:9-16)!


  7.  The Father, having begun a good work in us, disciplines us (Phil. 1:6; Heb. 12:5-8)!


  8.  The Holy Spirit leads us in the work we should do (Jn. 14:23-26; Rom. 8:14; Eph. 2:10)!


  9.  Holy Spirit led believers glorify the Father and the Son (Mt. 5:16; Jn. 16:14)!


10.  Finally, when God is finished His work on us, we shall see Jesus face-to-face, and become like Him (1 Jn. 3:1-2)!

TAKE THE TIME TO LOOK AT THESE VERSES.
THE BUREANS CERTAINLY WOULD (Acts 17:11)!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

JESUS: THE CREATOR AND "I AM" OF GOD'S WORD

JESUS, BEING GOD, IS OUR CREATOR!
*  Genesis 1:1 - "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."
Compare with:
*  John 1:1-3, 14 - "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  The Same was in the beginning with God.  All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made....And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."
*  Colossians 1:15-17 - Jesus, "Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:
For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers:  all things were created by Him, and for Him:  and He is before all things, and by Him all things consist."
*  Hebrews 1:1-3 - "God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spoke in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son, Whom He hath appointed heir of all things, by Whom also He made the worlds; Who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the Word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high."

JESUS WAS, IS, AND WILL ALWAYS BE THE GREAT "I AM!"
*  Exodus 3:13-14 - "And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is His name?  What shall I say unto them?  And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and He said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you."
Compare with:
*  John 8:24, 28, 58 - "I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I AM, ye shall die in your sins....Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I AM, and I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father hath taught Me, I speak these things....Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I AM."
*  John 13:13, 19 - "Ye call Me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for I AM....Now I tell you before it come, that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I AM."  
*  John 18:4-6 - "Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon Him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye? They answered Him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I AM.  And Judas also, which betrayed Him, stood with them.  As soon then as He had said unto them, I AM, they went backward, and fell to the ground." 

OUR CREATOR CLEARLY DEMONSTRATED HIS LOVE FOR US  
*  Philippians 2:5-8 - "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:  but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross."

  JESUS DIED FOR OUR SIN SO THAT, WE BY FAITH, DESIRE TO LIVE FOR HIM!



 
 
 

WHAT MUST I BELIEVE TO BE SAVED?


JESUS FORETOLD OF HIS CRUCIFIXION AND RESURRECTION
*  Matthew 16:21 - "From that time forth began Jesus to show unto His disciples, how that He must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day."
*  Matthew 17:22-23 - "And while they abode in Galilee, Jesus said unto them, The Son of man shall be betrayed into the hands of men:  and they shall kill him, and the third day He shall be raised again. And they were exceeding sorry."
*  Matthew 20:18-19 - "Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn Him to death, and shall deliver Him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify Him: and the third day He shall rise again."


PASSAGES WHICH CONFIRM HIS CRUCIFIXION AND RESURRECTION
*  Matthew 28:5-6 - "And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye:  for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.  He is not here:  for He is risen, as He said.  Come, see the place where the Lord lay."
*  Mark 16:5-6 - "And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted.  And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified:  He is risen; He is not here:  behold the place where they laid Him."
*  Luke 24:4-7 - "And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments:  and as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead?  He is not here, but is risen: remember how He spoke unto you when He was yet in Galilee, saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again."
*  Acts 2:22-24 - "Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by Him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:  Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:  Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that He should be holden of it."
*  Acts 4:10 - "Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, Whom ye crucified, Whom God raised from the dead, even by Him doth this man stand here before you whole."
*  Acts 10:39-40 - "And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; Whom they slew and hanged on a tree:  Him God raised up the third day, and showed Him openly."

THE GOSPEL MESSAGE SAVES THOSE WHO BELIEVE IT  
*  Romans 1:15-17 - "So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the Gospel to you that are at Rome also.  For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ:  for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile.  For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith:  as it is written, The just shall live by faith."
*  1 Corinthians 15:1-6 - "Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.  For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures:  and that He was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:  after that, He was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep."

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

JESUS CHRIST IS LORD: EVERY KNEE WILL BOW TO HIM!

THE ONE AND ONLY NAME THAT CAN SAVE US
*  Acts 4:10-12 - "Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, Whom ye crucified, Whom God raised from the dead, even by Him doth this man stand here before you whole.  This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.  Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."
[Note:  The phrase "the Lord Jesus Christ" appears 84 times in the New Testament].
TEN PASSAGES SAYING THE LORD HEARS ALL WHO CALL UPON HIM
*  Deuteronomy 4:7 - "For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the LORD our God is in all things that we call upon Him for?"
*  2 Samuel 22:4 - "I will call on the LORD, Who is worthy to be praised:  so shall I be saved from mine enemies."
*  Psalm 18:3 - "I will call upon the LORD, Who is worthy to be praised:  so shall I be saved from mine enemies."
*  Psalm 55:16 - "As for me, I will call upon God; and the LORD shall save me."
*  Psalm 116:2 - "Because He hath inclined His ear unto me, therefore will I call upon Him as long as I live."
*  Psalm 145:18 - "The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon Him, to all that call upon Him in truth."
*  Joel 2:32 - "And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call."
*  Zechariah 13:9 - "And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried:  they shall call on My name, and I will hear them:  I will say, It is My people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God."
*  Acts 2:21 - "And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved."
*  Romans 10:12-13 - "For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon Him.  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."  
JESUS:  THE NAME WHICH IS ABOVE EVERY NAME
*  Philippians 2:5-11 - "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:  but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

PROPHECIES DESCRIBING THE LAST DAYS

*  Genesis 49:1-2 - "And Jacob called unto his sons, and said, Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days.  Gather yourselves together, and hear, ye sons of Jacob; and hearken unto Israel your father."  Note:  v. 49:3-28 speak of future events involving the 12 tribes of Israel.


*  Isaiah 2:1-2 - "The Word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.  And it shall come to pass IN THE LAST DAYS, that the mountain of the LORD's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it."  Note:  v. 2:3 - 4:6 describe Israel in the Day of the LORD.


*  Micah 4:1-2 - "But IN THE LAST DAYS it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it.  And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths:  for the Law shall go forth of Zion, and the Word of the LORD from Jerusalem."  Note:  v. 4:3-13 describe the Millennial Reign of Israel's Messiah.


*  Acts 2:16-21 - "But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel: And it shall come to pass IN THE LAST DAYS, saith God, I will pour out of My Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:  and on My servants and on My handmaidens I will pour out in those days of My Spirit; and they shall prophesy:  and I will show wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:  the sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:  and it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved."  Note:  Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit (v. 2:4), quotes Joel 2:28-32.


*  2 Timothy 3:1-5 - "This know also, that IN THE LAST DAYS perilous times shall come.  For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof:  from such turn away."  Note:  Obviously this passage describes mankind today!


*  Hebrews 1:1-3 - "God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spoke in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath IN THESE LAST DAYS spoken unto us by His Son, Whom He hath appointed heir of all things, by Whom also He made the worlds; Who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the Word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.  Note:  We are now in the last days - Jesus came, was crucified, was buried, was raised from the dead, and ascended to the throne of God, where He now waits until the appointed time to return and establish His Millennial Kingdom - see. Revelation 19:11 - 20:15!

Monday, July 10, 2017

BELIEVERS ARE CALLED TO OBEDIENCE AND HOLINESS!

*  Matthew 7:21-27 - "Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father Who is in heaven.  Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name?  And in Thy name have cast out devils?  And in Thy name done many wonderful works?  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you:  depart from Me, ye that work iniquity.  Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who built his house upon a rock:  and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not:  for it was founded upon a rock.  And every one that heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand:  and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell:  and great was the fall of it."


*  John 8:10-11 - "When Jesus had lifted up Himself, and saw none but the woman, He said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers?  Hath no man condemned thee?  She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee:  go, and sin no more."


*  Galatians 5:13-16, 22-25 - "For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.  For all the Law is fulfilled in one Word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.  This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh....But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.  And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit."


*  1 Thessalonians 4:1-7 - "Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more.  For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.  For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:  that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God:  that no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter:  because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified.  For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness."


*  2 Timothy 2:19 - "Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His.  And, Let everyone that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity."


*  1 John 2:4-6 - "He that saith, I know Him, and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.  But whoso keepeth His Word, in him verily is the love of God perfected:  hereby know we that we are in Him.  He that saith he abideth in Him ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked."



REPENTANCE: OUR RESPONSE TO BELIEVING THE GOSPEL

THE GOSPEL:  THE GOOD NEWS OF THE REMISSION OF OUR SINS
*  Matthew 26:28 - "For this is My blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins."
*  Acts 10:43 - "To Him give all the prophets witness, that through His name whosoever believeth in Him shall receive remission of sins."
*  1 Corinthians 15:1-4 - "Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.  For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures."

THE GOSPEL BELIEVED LEADS TO REPENTANCE
*  Luke 24:46-47 - "And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:  and that repentance AND remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem."



SEEKING THE LORD'S WILL IS EVIDENCE OF REPENTANCE
*  Acts 2:37-38 - "Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?  Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."
*  Acts 9:5-6 - "And he said, Who art Thou, Lord?  And the Lord said, I am Jesus Whom thou persecutest:  it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.  And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?  And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do."
*  Acts 16:30-31 - "And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."
*  Acts 22:10 - "And I said, What shall I do, Lord?  And the Lord said unto me, Arise, and go into Damascus; and there it shall be told thee of all things which are appointed for thee to do."
*  Acts 26:20 - "But showed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance."

Sunday, July 9, 2017

CHRISTIANS ARE SAVED TO SERVE

TODAY'S KEY VERSE:  EPHESIANS 2:10
*  Ephesians 2:8-10 - "For by grace (unmerited favor) are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves:  it is the gift of God:  not of works, lest any man should boast.  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."


THEREFORE, SERVE THE LORD
*  Deuteronomy 10:12 - " And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all His ways, and to love Him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul...."
*  Joshua 24:15 - "And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell:  but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."
*  1 Samuel 12:20 - "And Samuel said unto the people, Fear not:  ye have done all this wickedness: yet turn not aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart."
*  Psalm 2:11-12 - "Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.  Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and ye perish from the way, when His wrath is kindled but a little.  Blessed are all they that put their trust in Him."
*  Psalm 100:2 - "Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing."
*  Psalm 102:22 - "When the people are gathered together, and the kingdoms, to serve the LORD."
*  Jeremiah 30:9 - "But they shall serve the LORD their God, and David their king, whom I will raise up unto them."
*  Matthew 6:24 - "No man can serve two masters:  for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.  Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
*  Colossians 3:23-25 - "And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance:  for ye serve the Lord Christ.  But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done:  and there is no respect of persons."
*  1 Peter 2:15-17 - "For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:  as free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.  Honour all men.  Love the brotherhood.  Fear God.  Honour the king."
*  Hebrews 12:28-29 - "Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:  for our God is a consuming fire."



Saturday, July 8, 2017

JESUS DIED FOR US - WE OWE HIM OUR LIVES!

Jesus is God manifest in the flesh (Jn. 1:1; 1 Tim. 3:16; Heb. 1:3)!  Jesus is both Master and Lord (Jn. 13:13)!  Jesus is the Creator of all there is (Jn. 1:1-3; Col. 1:16-17; Heb. 1:1-2)!  Jesus not only deserves our faithful obedience, but it is His will:

*  Luke 6:46 - "And why call ye Me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?"

*  John 9:31 - "Now we know that God heareth not sinners:  but if any man be a worshipper of God, AND doeth His will, him He heareth."

*  Acts 5:29-32 - "Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.  The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, Whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.  Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.  And we are His witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey Him."

*  Acts 21:14 - "And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done."

*  Romans 6:11-13 - "Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.  Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God."

*  Ephesians 5:17 - "Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is."

*  2 Timothy 2:19 - "Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity."

*  Titus 2:11-14 - "For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works."

*  1 Peter 4:1-2 "Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind:  for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin; that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God."

IF JESUS IS YOUR GOD, THEN OBEY HIM!

*  Psalm 100:2-3 - "Serve the LORD with gladness:  come before His presence with singing.  Know ye that the LORD, He is God:  it is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture."


*  John  1:1-3, 14 - "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  The Same was in the beginning with God.  All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made....And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."


*  Acts 5:29-32 - "Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.  The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, Whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.  Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.  And we are His witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, Whom God hath given to them that obey Him."


*  Ephesians 2:8-10 - "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  not of works, lest any man should boast.  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."


*  1 Corinthians 6:19-20 - "What?  Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost Who is in you, Whom ye have of God, and ye are not your own?  For ye are bought with a price
therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."


*  Matthew 6:24 - "No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon."


*  John 13:13 - "Ye call Me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am."


*  Acts 16:17 - "The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which show unto us the way of salvation."


*  Colossians 3:23-24 - "And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ."


*  Revelation 1:1-2 - "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto Him, to show unto His servants things which must shortly come to pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John:  who bare record of the Word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw."

IF YOU BELIEVE JESUS IS GOD, YOU ARE HIS SERVANT!

Friday, July 7, 2017

HOW CAN YOU PREACH CHRIST WITHOUT REVEALING WHO HE IS?


I am confused!  Why is it that I am criticized for my view that born again believers recognize that they are to submit themselves to God?  When did evangelical Christians decide that acknowledging the historical fact that Jesus died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that He was buried, and that God raised Him from the dead according to the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:1-4), was all one needs to know to be saved?  It is as though they have selected those four verses as "the Gospel truth" (pardon the pun), and ignored the rest of the entire Bible, four books of which are called Gospels!  And how can they ignore the fact that Jesus is called "Lord," "Master," "God," "Creator," and "the Son of God"?And what do they do with these verses?



THE WORK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN BELIEVERS
*  John 14:17 - "...He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you."
*  John 16:13 - "Howbeit when He, the Spirit of Truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth...." 
*  Ephesians 4:30 - "And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, by Whom ye are sealed unto the day of redemption."

WE ARE CALLED TO OBEY BOTH THE FATHER AND THE SON
*  Matthew 7:21 - [Obey My Father] "Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father Who is in heaven."
*  Luke 6:46 - [Obey Me] "And why call ye Me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?"
*  Acts 5:29 - "Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men."
*  Acts 5:32 - "And we are His witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, Whom God hath given to them that obey Him."
*  Hebrews 5:9 - "And being made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him."
*  James 4:7 - "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."
*  1 John 2:3-4 "And hereby we do know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.  He that saith, I know Him, and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him."
*  1 John 5:3 - "For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grievous."

THE GOSPEL REVEALS WHO IS LORD AND WHO ARE HIS SERVANTS
*  Mark 1:1 - "The beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God...."

*  Luke 23:42-43 - "And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when Thou comest into Thy kingdom.  And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with Me in paradise."
*  Acts 4:29 - "And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto Thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak Thy Word."
*  Romans 1:1 - "Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the Gospel of God...."
*  Romans 6:22 - "But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life."
*  2 Timothy 2:24 - "And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men...."
*  James 1:1 - "James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting."