It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter. Proverbs 25:2

Archive for November, 2017

The Love of God Displayed At The Cross!

Many people want to define God’s love based on their experiences and what they are going through. They will say, “If God is love then why does He let all these bad things happen? If God loves us why do we have to suffer, why are people sick and die? Why is there so much evil in the world, if God is love?” Some people want to define God according to human reasoning. Some even want to tell the Potter what type of pottery He should make. When people do not see the life they want or expected, then they will say God is unjust or God is not love.

The world says if God is love, He would not send anyone to hell. God’s integrity and righteousness demands the payment for sin which is death. It was the love of God that sent Jesus to die but it was the death at the cross that saved us from eternal destruction. God’s love could not be untrue to Himself and turn a blind eye to sin. The Holiness of God, demanded payment and Jesus made this payment in full, when He cried, “It is finished.”

The question of God’s love for us was answered at the Cross. The love of God was displayed at Calvary with the death of Jesus. God loved this world so much that He gave His only Son so that those who believed in Him should not perish for eternity. This is an awesome display of love. There is no greater love expressed than when a person lays down their life for their beloved. God’s love is defined by His sacrifice, His Son! God’s love is not measured by whether we are having a good day, living without struggles and finding favour in life circumstances. The matter was settled at Calvary!

The death of Jesus on the cross enabled God to forgive our sins and bring us back into a righteous standing with Him. A righteous God could not be true to Himself and fail to punish sin. The wages of sin is death and someone will die an eternal death in payment of sin. Jesus became sin on the cross so that He would pay the sin debt for all who will believe in Him and His truth. It was God’s love for us that sent Jesus to the cross. It was Jesus’ love displayed in that He laid down His life for us. The love of God and the Blood of Jesus speaks for all eternity of the love God has for us. God has settled the matter, nothing can separate us from the love of God and that my friend, is truth!

God’s love saw our need while we were still deep in our sins. Though we were at enmity with God in our own minds and actions, He paid the ransom to set us free from our enslavement to sin. Whether we want to acknowledge the conflict between good and evil in this fallen world system or not, we see the effect of the age long battle for the hearts and minds of people. The lie of the world says, “God is unjust, He cannot love.” Truth speaks, there is an enemy that wants to kill, steal and destroy the image bearers of God. Jesus came to show us the truth of our created purpose and destiny. We were created to be the image bearers of God our heavenly Father and to display His love on the earth.

John 18:37 “You are a king, then!” said Pilate. Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”

Remember, we need never again question the love of God or be defined by life experiences, our culture or society. The Blood of Jesus speaks for all eternity, the Love of the Father. It is when we rest in the completed work of Christ that we can press through life’s challenges and yes, even walk through the valley of grievous things, because nothing can separate us from the love God has for us.

1 John 4:9-11 In this the love of God was manifested toward, us that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. NKJV

1 John 3:1 Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! NKJV

Performing and Pretending -Verses- Integrity and Truth

Most people come to God and go to church for what they can get from God. They want a better life, a blessed family and to go to heaven when they die. That is part of a western world culture, to seek God, to be their genie in a bottle, their server; the one who waits on them and provides their every need. The truth of the Gospel says we must die to self, serve others and let the kingdom of God be in us, heaven on earth. Jesus told us die to self and follow Him, be like Him, be His disciple and show the love of God to a lost world.

There is a perverted gospel that will build a shrine to God and try to perform good deeds that may give the appearance of love but it is self-serving. Some people will perform to get blessings from God, favour and His protection. They come to God for what He can do for them; not for a changed life and to look like Christ. Some even preach a message to come to God for what He can do for them, for the riches, blessing and favour of God. Rather than speaking truth that we are loved by God and He died because we are His children who have value, purpose and God ordained destiny.

Jesus came to show us the way to the Father. We are to die to the fallen man; self-centeredness and to become as servants and live as His children. Young children submit and are obedient to authority. This is God’s call to everyone who is truly born again, to obey His Word. When people are not rooted in the truth of God’s love for them through Jesus, they will try to compensate by trying to earn God’s love, blessing and approval through performing deeds they think are good. When they fail to live up to the impossible standards, of their own righteousness, then they become condemned and believe they are failures.

It is when we are anchored in the truth of the gospel, and God’s love for us through Jesus, then we can enjoy the fellowship of God as a loving Father. His purpose is to transform us into the Image of His Son. If we do not rest on the completed work of Jesus and His righteousness, we may become overwhelmed by our sins and inability to change our behavior.
So often many people turn to pretending and performing. They start performing and working in the church or their community to gain acknowledgement and feel good about themselves. But often times they are constantly aware of their failures. Then comes the comparison- I am not as bad as those people; or the making of excuses- I am not really that bad. Often they will give reasons for their behavior. You do not know what was done to me or, what I have been through. Because of pride, people rarely want to admit they are sinful or fail, so they spin the situation in their favor.

Pride and the constant concern with self is the main reason many people never change their lives and never experience a true repentance. Repentance is a true turning from the old way of life to a new way of thinking and living. The only way to be free from pride is to die to self. We are called to be dead with Christ so that we shall live with Him.

Romans 6: 6 – 8 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him… KJV

So many people have fallen into the trap of pretending they are well or trying to perform good works to gain value and worth, but still only find themselves crushed by the weight and reality of their sin. It is only in the completed work of Jesus that we can rest our lives, die to self and be transformed to look like the love of God on the earth. Many people have a confession but God wants a transformation. Knowing the truth of God’s word and the power of the Holy Spirit gives us the integrity we need to live a life for the love of God and not for self.

Rest in this, Jesus died to put us in right standing and fellowship with God. He knew our created purpose, identity and Godly destiny. When we rest in the love God has for us we will begin to understand that nothing we do or fail to do will keep us from His love.

Love Changes The Way We Think – Love Changes The Way We Live

With true love there is true conversion. Conversion by definition is to bring over from one belief-view to another; to alter the physical nature or properties; to change from one form or function to another. All humanity is born with a corrupted mindset; it is what we receive from Adam after the fall. Through faith in Jesus we have salvation, which not only saves us from sin but makes us right with God. Receiving God’s love, forgiveness and restoration back to God, converts or changes the way we think of ourselves. We become a new creation, children of God. When we know who we are in Christ we will want to change our behavior.

The love of the Holy Spirit that lives in the true born again believer can be seen in our motivation, determination and self-control, and in the performance, accomplishments and the achieving of God’s love in the earth. God never lost sight of who we were created to be; His children and our created purpose; to reflect His love to one another and all creation.

Philippians 2:13 For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose. NIV

The beginning of the true Christian conversion is recognizing God’s Holiness and Jesus’ love for us because He paid our sin debt. This allows that same love to flow from our lives to those who are lost. God did not wait until we became right; He made us righteous, just as we cannot wait for the unlovely to become loveable. While we were yet sinners Christ died for us and while they are still sinning we must die to self and show the love of God to others.

Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. NIV

Conversion is the process all true believers go through after there is restoration and justification. Once we are restored to the family of God and are justified by the completed work of Christ on the cross, we begin a conversion from the old person of the current world beliefs and views, to God’s Kingdom principles and truths. The changes in our beliefs transform and alter our physical nature; we are changed from the former actions of living for self, to dying to our natural thoughts, feelings and emotions that we received from Adam’s fallen nature.

As our understanding and appreciation of God’s love for us through Jesus grows, so will our desire to please Him, to be like Him and to show His love to others. Salvation is a onetime occurrence. Once we truly accept Jesus Christ as our Saviour and Lord we are in the household of God. But conversion and transformation is a continuous process of renewing our minds to the way God thinks and a continuous process of dying to self and loving others as Christ loved us.

Romans 12:2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is- His good, pleasing and perfect will. NIV

As a true believer, our spirit man is made alive in Christ and the Holy Spirit is now living in us and yet sometimes our minds, bodies and habits remain the same. This is the conflict we need to resolve in the new believer, who has accepted Jesus as their Lord and Saviour and yet their natural tendencies are to respond in their old way of thinking. Their reasoning and thoughts of right or wrong and their very conscience has been molded by this fallen world system. To change their actions they must change the way they think. To be transformed into the image of God we must change our belief system to agree and line up with His. This is done by knowing Him, the only wise God our Saviour through His written word.

Remember, it is the love of God in us that changes the way we think and see things. The love God has for us, because of Jesus, changes the way we live our lives and see others. It is not by any works of our own but the power of God through the Holy Spirit working in us. We no longer see ourselves condemned, but free. Free from pride, free from self, free to be transformed into the love of God, which is displayed by our love for others, our joy, hope and peace, that we have in our lives and for others.

A New People – The Gospel Love Story Continues

God, Who is love, brought forth from Himself, a creation of love, mankind. Mankind was made perfect in love, perfect in the image of God and was given dominion over all of God’s creation on the earth. They lived in perfect harmony with God, one another and all creation until the fall. At which time mankind was so marred they no longer looked like their creator but they took on the prideful and selfish nature of the one they obeyed; a fallen angel. Love came and redeemed that which was lost, our relationship with God and our created purpose. Now those who are in Christ Jesus are a new creation, a new people and are restored into the family of God.

We are changed from fallen and marred persons into the family of God through faith. Faith is belief and trust in God’s word. It is the very thing that was needed to keep us from falling into this sinful state and believing the lie of the enemy rather than listening and believing God. It was an act of disbelief in God’s word which said mankind was created in the image of God that caused them to disobey. Had mankind believed God, they would not have been tempted to believe the lie of Satan’s telling them they can be something they already were, like God.

Ephesians 2: 8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest anyone should boast. NKJV

We experience God’s salvation personally and become representatives, agents and ambassadors of God’s redemption when we by faith, trust and believe in Jesus. Faith believes in the life, death, resurrection of Jesus, His atonement of our sin debt and our obedience to God’s word through the power of the Holy Ghost. When we have a saving faith in Jesus, we admit our sin and accept His payment for our sin debt and with gratitude we accept His forgiveness.

We rest totally on the completed work of Jesus. Jesus stands before God for us so that we can now come boldly to the throne of Grace, before God and be accepted as His beloved. What a love! What a love story! A love so strong, so deep, so committed, He would not leave us to ourselves in our depraved and marred state.

Psalm 31:14-15 But I trust in you, LORD; I say, You are my God. My times are in your hands; deliver me from the hands of my enemies, from those who pursue me. NIV

Faith is the process of being transformed from death in this current world system to life in Christ and the kingdom of God. Our spiritual death and resurrection frees us from the bondage of sin in our flesh which we had no control or authority over prior to Jesus’ deliverance. Now we are free from the spiritual grip sin had on us and we can now as an act of our will ask God to deliver us from the habits of sin that the body had become accustomed too. We are free to die to self, pride and the flesh to stop living for our own glory and live for God’s glory. We are free to love God and love others as image bearers of God.

Matthew 28: 18-20 Then Jesus came to them and said, All authority is heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. NIV

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