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A New Nature

A New Nature

As clearly as the bible teaches that the unregenerate person has a nature of wrath and is led by, lied to, and blinded by Satan, the bible teaches that once one repents and receives Christ he is a new creature in Christ; he has died to the old nature and come alive to Christ and is given a new nature. II Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”

Once the sinner has repented and given his life over to Christ he is transformed from a nature of wrath to a nature of God. His nature is transformed because his position has been changed from being a man of the world to a man of God. Formerly, according to Ephesians 2:2, he walked, “according to the course of this world.” But now that his position has been changed, he is seated with Jesus in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 2:6).

Due to his change of position a transformation has taken place in his spirit where he has received the Spirit of God and his spirit has been lifted up into heaven residing with Christ. For this reason he is in Christ and Christ is in him. I John 4:13 says, “By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.” Since his position has changed he is never alone. The Holy Spirit is now at work in his life teaching him, leading him, and transforming him from glory to glory.

Ephesians 2:2 also tells us that he formerly walked in accordance to the, “prince of the power of the air.” Now he is in the hands of God as “His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” He is no longer being influenced by Satan. He is now being led by God. Just as his position has changed, his allegiance has changed. Jesus is now his Lord. His allegiance is now to walk in the good works of God for the glory of God.  (Ephesians 2:10).

Just as he once was by nature a child of wrath, he is now a child of God. Since his nature has changed he is no longer a sinner. Romans 6:6-7 says,  knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin.” This does not at all mean that the Christian cannot sin. As we see clearly in Romans 7 there is a constant battle between the flesh and the Spirit. What this means is that he is now freed from the hold and bondage sin had on his life. Sin no longer has power over him. God has power over him. He is now free. Therefore, he is to consider himself dead to sin and alive to Christ. (Romans 6:11).

Since he no longer has a nature of sin he has been declared as righteous. II Corinthians 5:21 says, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” This righteousness is not of his own accord but from his new position, his new allegiance, and his new nature that comes through his faith connection with Christ. Jesus made this possible on the cross through the shedding of His blood. He allows God to apply this righteousness to his life by his faith in Christ.

A child with a nature of wrath will live in that nature of wrath living in the lusts of his flesh and mind, therefore, living in sin. His nature has changed. Therefore, for him to live in sin is unnatural. The one who is a child of wrath will walk in accordance to the prince of the power of the air. His allegiance has changed. He now walks in accordance to God as Lord of his life. Anything else would be unnatural. His focus is no longer on the course of this world, for, he is now setting his mind on the things above. For him to be concerned with the affairs of the world would be unnatural.

 
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Posted by on January 25, 2017 in Bible Study, Devotional, Uncategorized

 

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Have you Believed?

Have you Believed?

The most important question is, “Have you believed on Jesus?” John’s conclusion as to whether or not one has eternal life was based on whether or not one has believed on Jesus Christ. He wrote in I John 5:10, “The one who believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself; the one who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has given concerning His Son.” The bible is abundantly clear that we are saved by placing our faith in the person and works of Jesus Christ. I have already covered this topic so I will not further elaborate. However, I must make this point clear, simple repentance of sin will not save you; only faith in Christ will save you.
If we have set in our heart to deny ourselves and follow Jesus as Lord of our lives, trusting in His work on the cross as being sufficient for the atonement of our sins and His person being sufficient to lead us as an example, we will receive eternal life. John wrote in the next two verses, “And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life.”
However, the one who is saved will naturally and willingly keep His commands and turn from his sin. John writes in I John 2:3-6, “By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.” The one who has faith in Jesus will keep His commandments. He will have died to self and allow Jesus to be Lord of his life.
The lordship of Jesus is the biggest test to the doubter. I never ask anyone if they are a Christian. The term Christian has become a cheap and meaningless word in our society. Not that the word is cheap; it is precious and valuable, yet, people have abused and defaced it with their cheep view of Christianity. I simply ask, “Is Jesus the Lord of your life?” I also never ask what someone did years ago or what type of religious experiences they have had. Too many people are depending on a religious experience they had once in their past to save them. That isn’t the biblical picture of Christianity. Jesus told us to follow Him. This is a daily commitment, not a onetime act that we do and then forget about the Lord until we get to heaven. Again, I simply ask, “Is Jesus the Lord of your life?” We are saved once, but by faith we daily pick up our cross and follow Him.
Jesus asked in Luke 6:46, “Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” If Jesus is truly the Lord of one’s life he will keep Jesus commandments. Will he do this perfectly? No. He will however, do this consistently. Again, he is not keeping the commandments of Christ to earn salvation since his faith in Jesus gives him salvation. He is keeping the commandments of Christ because of his salvation, because of his faith in Jesus. It is the fruit, the evidence, the result of salvation. Jesus said in John 14:15, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.”
The word keep is an interesting word. It was a word that was widely used by ancient seamen. While out in the open waters they would “keep” the stars. The sailors navigated their ships by the stars. If they weren’t skilled in “keeping” the stares they would be forever lost at sea. Hebrews 12:1-2 says, “Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith.” Jesus is our navigator to the Father. (John 14:6). When we focus on and follow Jesus we lay aside our sin and keep His commandments. When we do not focus on Him we wander aimlessly lost. He is the one on whom we focus for He is the one in whom we have faith. When we focus on Him through faith, He perfects our faith and gives to us the ability to keep His commandments. True repentance is turning from sin and turning to Jesus by faith who will keep us from sin.

 
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Posted by on January 16, 2017 in Bible Study, Devotional

 

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Repentance Requires Action

Repentance Requires Action

As previously stated, true biblical repentance is more than just action, it is a reaction to the grace of God. That being said, true biblical repentance requires action. Paul tells us in Romans 5:17 that God’s grace is in abundance. Truly, God has more grace than we have sin. That being said, the abundance of God’s grace doesn’t give us a right to continue sinning. In fact, a true understanding of the grace of God should motivate us to repent from our sin. For this reason, Paul asks in Romans 6:1, “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?” He then answers this rhetorical question by stating with great boldness, “May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?”
One who understands the grace of God understands that it was sin that Jesus died for. Jesus died for sin so we could die to sin. Continuing in sin so that grace may increase is utter foolishness. In fact, continuing in sin is trampling over the grace that God has freely offered to the whosoever will. We don’t continue in sin, we consider ourselves dead to sin and accept the death to sin by placing our faith in Christ.
Once we consider ourselves dead to sin we consider ourselves alive to Jesus. Jesus died for our sins to make it possible for us to live for Him. Romans 6:3-7 says, “Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin.”
Romans 6 explains that through Christ we have died to sin but come alive to God. The full circle of repentance isn’t just turning away from the bad stuff but is turning to Jesus. Only through Jesus can we truly repent. Only through Jesus do we have the freedom from sin. Therefore, when we repent of our sin we turn from our sin while turning to Jesus trusting that He will keep us from sin.

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2017 in Bible Study, Devotional

 

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A Sinful Nature

A Sinful Nature

Mankind isn’t sinful because he has sinned. Rather, man sins because he is sinful. His sins do not corrupt his heart making him sinful. His heart that is sinfully corrupted causes him to sin. The bible is clear that all have sinned. (Romans 3:23). This is due to the fact that we all were born with a corrupted nature of wrath. (Ephesians 2:3). The level of sinfulness in the individual’s heart and manifest actions is insignificant. Whether the sin is great or small its wage is still death, and eternal condemnation. Since our nature has been corrupted by sin our whole being is corrupt.

Only Jesus can redeem us from our sins and transform us from life unto death. John 8:36 says, “If the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed” and Romans 6:14 tells us, because of the grace of God, “Sin shall no not be master over you.” When we trust in Jesus we are transformed from a nature of wrath to the nature of Christ. Since we are sinful we don’t deserve God’s gift. But praise be to God that He is a God of grace who gives us what we don’t deserve. We truly don’t want what we deserve. We simply receive God’s grace, which opens the door for His work of transformation, by faith.

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

 

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