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Concluding the Victory

Concluding the Victory

I always find it odd that Christians do not want to read or study the book of Revelation because it frightens them. Do they not know that Revelation declares the final victory for Christ and His children? At the same time it declares the final doom for Satan and those who follow him. Revelation 12:11 declares, “And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death.” Who is the “they” that overcame? The Christians. Who is the him they overcame? The dragon, Satan himself. What is the word of their testimony? The redemptive power of the blood of Christ. We must also understand that Jesus isn’t going to, someday, overcome Satan and the world, Jesus said in John 16:33 that He has already overcome the world and his children aren’t one day, in the sweet by and by, going to overcome, but they too, through Jesus, already overcame. I John 2:13 says, “I am writing to you, fathers, because you know Him who has been from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I have written to you, children, because you know the Father.”

As we look at the final part of the Holy Spirit’s convicting power on the world Jesus concluded with the Spirit convicting the world of Judgment. Jesus said in John 16:11, “Concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.” The ruler of this world is Satan, and as we see in this statement, he has been, past tense, judged. It’s a done deal. Satan’s judgment is sealed and he has been utterly defeated. I John 3:8 says, “The one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil,” and Colossians 2:15 says, “When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.”

Remember, this conviction of sin, righteousness, and judgment is for the word, not the Christian. Though the Christian can be, and will be, convicted of sin and righteousness, the Christian cannot be judged. Why? Just as Satan’s judgment is sealed so is the Christians. The judgment for Satan is eternal damnation. Since Jesus took upon the penalty of death on the cross and bestowed upon us His righteousness, to those who receive Him, the judgment for the Christian is eternal paradise with God. The judgment for the world, those lost in their sins, will be sealed upon their death. If they die separated from God in their sin they will enter into eternal damnation along with Satan, however, if they repent, they are pardoned from their sins, by the redemptive power of the blood of Jesus and will be eternally saved. Jesus said in John 3:18, “He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

The Holy Spirit will not only convict the sinner of his sins and his need for righteousness, but will also convict the sinner of the fact that he stands at enmity against a holy and righteous God because of his sins and is worthy of condemnation and eternal damnation. All who will be eternally damned to hell will first stand in front of the judgment seat of God. At that time, they will know God’s righteousness, and they will understand they are a sinner, and not a single person in hell will be there without knowing God was just for His judgment. When the Holy Spirit convicted me of my sin and of God’s righteousness I knew without a doubt that a was worthy of hell. Recognizing the grace and mercy of God I willingly, humbly, and excitedly accepted that grace, repented of my sin, and surrendered myself to the Lordship of Jesus. Apart from the Holy Spirits convicting power in my life, I would have never known, remained unrepentant, and continued to stand in condemnation. Praise God for the convicting power of the Holy Spirit, and praise God for the victory we have in Christ. It’ baffles me that people would stay unrepentant when it’s clear that they are not only on a losing team, but have already lost, yet they have the opportunity, through Jesus, to repent and switch sides.

 
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Posted by on February 27, 2017 in Bible Study, Devotional, Uncategorized

 

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We Know That We Have Eternal Life

We Know That We Have Eternal Life

  And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.” I John 5:20 NASB

Whether it’s people, places, or things, I have always been fascinated by things that are old. Whether it’s old guitars or old cars, I love antiques. I love the history behind them. As an American, I become fascinated with architecture that is a couple of centuries old, yet, when I travel the world I am flabbergasted with architecture that dates back to over a millennium. It is then that I realize American antiques aren’t that antique compared to the ancient world.

Over the years I have had the privilege of knowing people who were right at a hundred years old, or just over. They too fascinate me. I love hearing their stories of the way the world was in their youth. I will never forget my grandmother telling me how terrified she was the first time she saw a car. Although I can’t truly comprehend it, I feel as though I was there when I hear these stories of a world long ago.

I love it when they tell the stories as if they were yesterday. In reality, age is relative. The older you get the younger the rest of the world seems. As a child, three months of summer vacation was a lifetime. Now, it’s a flash. I remember when my dad turned forty. I thought to myself, that is an old man. Now that I am on the other side of forty I know he was still a young man. My perspective has greatly changed in my advancement of years. The bible tells us that life is like a vapor. It is here for a little while and then it vanishes away. (James 4:14). In reality, what is one hundred years compared to eternity? It is nothing. Not even a drop in the bucket. The bible tells us, since God is eternal, a thousand years is as a day for Him. (II Peter 3:8).

God created man to be eternal. Those who reject Jesus as their savior will not cease to exist. They will exist for eternity in the eternal lake of fire-hell. It is not God’s will to cast anyone into hell. This is why we see clearly laid out in this last “we know” statement from God the effort God made for the world, the whosoever that will call on His name, to enter into fellowship with Him. John stated in I John 5:20 that God sent His Son. Apart from creating you that was God’s first act of calling you into fellowship with Him. Then John tells us that God gave us understanding of who Jesus is. How did He do that? He did that by giving us His word, the bible, and giving us His Holy Spirit that convicts us and opens our eyes and hearts to His word. Although God made all of this effort to enter into fellowship with the world, many will still reject Him. Those who reject Him will spend an eternity in Hell separated from a holy and loving God. This was not God’s choice; it was their choice for rejecting His offer of love, grace, and forgiveness through His own Son’s sacrifice.

Those who have chosen God’s means of salvation immediately enter into fellowship with God. This fellowship will not end at our final breath. In fact, our final breath will take us away from a very tiny portion of our life. This life on earth is microscopic compared to our life in eternity. In eternity we will be with the one who created us, the one who saved us, and the one who sustains us. In eternity there will be no sorrow, pain, sickness, or death. It will be paradise. A paradise that is currently incomprehensible. There we shall be with the Lord forever.

John began this message introducing Jesus as the Word of Life and the eternal life. (I John 1:1-2). It is fitting that he gives his final “we know” statement addressing the fact that God is eternal life. The only way we will have eternal life is if we have fellowship with God. Again, John’s purpose statement for I John is found in I John 5:13 stating, “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.” If you are in fellowship with God, you will have many evidences of that fellowship. By this we know. If you do not have those evidences you need to do some serious soul searching and ask yourself whether or not you are in true fellowship with God. If you have fellowship with God, know that you have eternal life in the glories of heaven.

 
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Posted by on August 14, 2015 in Bible Study, Devotional

 

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We Know That we Have Passed Out of Death Into Life

“We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death.” I John 3:14 NASB

As we have already seen love is one of the “by this we know” evidences of genuine salvation. Love is not the means of passing out of life into death but an evidence of going from life to death. The one who does not love abides in death. We clearly see in our world today those who claim to act on behalf of God but act out of hate rather than love. Their domain is death, which is seen clearly in their lack of love and heart of hate. The one who is truly living for God has passed out of death into life and as a result has love.

The bible speaks of three types of death, spiritual death, physical death, and the second death which is eternal death. Paul wrote in Ephesians 2:1, “And you were dead in your trespasses and sins,” and again in Colossians 2:13, “you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh.” Paul wasn’t talking to people who were physically dead, they were spiritually dead.

Sin separates us from God. God’s heart is to have a relationship with us. However, sin prevents us from having a relationship with Him. Separation from God is spiritual death. For this reason Jesus died for us so our sins can be forgiven and we would no longer be spiritual dead but alive in Christ and through Christ. Romans 6:23 not only tells us that the wages of sin is death but also says that the free gift of God is eternal life. Accepting the sacrificial atonement of Christ cleanses us from our sins and reconciles us into a right relationship with God.

The bible is clear-all have sinned. Isaiah 53:6, “All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way;” Romans 3:23, “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God;” I John 1:8, “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us;” I John 1:10, If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him (God) a liar and His word is not in us.”

Since all have sinned, all stand in need of salvation through the sacrifice Jesus paid on the cross. Apart from salvation they abide in death. Because of the sacrifice Jesus paid the bible says in I John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” As we see clearly that all have sinned we see just as clearly that the offer of salvation is for all. Romans 10:13 says, “For “WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED.”

The sacrifice Jesus paid through the shedding of His blood made it possible for Christ to be our atoning sacrifice. Hebrews 9:22 says, “Without the shedding of blood there is no redemption of sins.” I peter 3:18 says, “Christ also died for sins once for all,” and Romans 6:10 says, “For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all.” The moment we confess our sins and by faith accept Jesus work on the cross God saves us. As a sign and seal of our salvation God gives to us His Holy Spirit. Jesus said in John 6:63 “the Spirit gives life.” When we are forgiven of our sin through the sacrifice of Christ we stand in right relationship with God. He then gives us His Spirit which gives us life. We then “have passed out of death into life.”

Romans 8:9-11 says of those who have passed out of death into life, “However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” The assurance of scripture to those who are truly saved is that they have, past tense, and at the moment of salvation, passed out of death into life.

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Posted by on February 13, 2015 in Bible Study, Devotional

 

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Have You Received His Gift?

“She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” Matthew 1:21 NASB

When you woke up this Christmas morning you may have awaken to a treasure trove of gifts under your tree. Or, you may have none. Regardless of the gifts of the world, we have taken a look these past 28 days at many wonderful gifts God freely gives to those who have received the free gift of His salvation. The gifts are only available to those who have been saved from their sins by Jesus. You might now be asking, “How do receive the free gift of salvation?” That is the most important question anyone can ever ask.

1st The bible is clear that we are saved by faith and faith alone. By placing our faith in the person and works of Jesus Christ, His death, burial, and resurrection, we are saved. The Philippian jailer asked Paul, “What must I do to be saved?” Paul said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.” (Acts 16:30-31).

2nd We need to repent (turn away) of and ask forgiveness for our sins. You need to know that we are all sinners and need to be forgiven of our sins. Because of our sins we are condemned to Hell and separated from God. The bible states that Jesus purpose in coming to this world is to forgive His people of their sins. The bible also says in I John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” You can have the upmost confidence that the blood of Jesus is sufficient to wash away your sins. So when you confess, confess with faith.

3rd We need to accept Jesus, by faith, as Lord and Savior. Romans 10:9-10 says, “if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” To confess is to come into agreement with God. We agree with God that Jesus is Lord and confess Him has Lord of our lives. Jesus died to save us and rose again demonstrating that He is Lord.

Pray and ask God to forgive you of your sins. Pray and invite Him into your life to be your Lord and Savior. If you pray, in faith, knowing God will hear you and knowing God will answer you, and you are sincere in your prayer, God will hear you and He will answer you. You will be saved! Jesus said in Luke 15:7, “I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.” If you prayed to receive God’s free gift of salvation please let me know so I can rejoice with you and encourage you. Merry Christmas! Please share.

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Posted by on December 25, 2014 in Bible Study, Devotional

 

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