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Monthly Archives : September 2017

Jesus In Isaiah .. Our Savior .. Isaiah 53:5 .. September 17, 2017

     But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his woulds we are healed. Isaiah 53:5 ESV 

     Imagine with me what the experience of seeing the vision of things to come involving Jesus would like. Hundreds of years before Jesus became a man, the prophet Isaiah wrote of the events surrounding his birth, life, death, and resurrection. Everything Isaiah foretold concerning the life of Jesus happened. We have the privilege of looking back in the history of Isaiah and are blessed in seeing the prophecy fulfilled. These prophecies as well as many others concerning the life of Jesus in he Old Testament would validate that he, Jesus, was and is the Son of God. It would be impossible for one man to fulfill all the prophecies surrounding his life in such a perfect, detailed way like Jesus did except for this fact – he is God’s only Son.
Years ago I heard a term that is sad and dangerous at the same time. That term is “gospel hardened.” That is when you have heard the stories and historical facts surrounding the life of Christ so much that they cease to have an effect upon your life. It is when you begin to take for granted all that you have received as a person/Christian form God. One dangerous part of being gospel hardened is you fall away from your first love with Jesus. When this love wanes, your lifestyle evangelism for Christ becomes less evident. In fact, at times it may be difficult to see the difference between the person who claims to be a Christian and the person who does not. With this thought let us take a moment and remember what it took for Jesus to be the Savior of the world. For all those who would believe and call upon him for Salvation from the consequence of personal sin, let us remember the sacrifice and punishment Jesus took in our place.

HE WAS PIERCED FOR OUR TRANSGRESSION
     The nails that were placed in his hands and feet were nails of punishment for crimes that required capital punishment. The crime? Sin…. My sin. We have been taught that Jesus died in our place, and He truly did, for the nails that pierced his hands and feet were nails provided by our sins.

HE WAS CRUSHED FOR OUR INIQUITIES
     Every time the fist of a Roman soldier hit Jesus, it was a fist intended for our sin. The crushing weight of the cross was the crushing weight of our sin. The mental crushing of rejection from all who followed him just days before was rejection intended for us. All of this because of our sins.

UPON HIM WAS THE CHASTISEMENT THAT BROUGHT PEACE
     When all the wrath that was intended for us was poured upon Jesus, he died. However, just before he died, He said these words, “It is finished.”  What was finished? the plan God had intended was complete. the plan to redeem us back to Himself by paying a debt He did not owe… our debt. The debt of sin for which there is no forgiveness without the shedding of blood by the perfect lamb of God…. His only Son. We can have peace of mind because as a Christian, we know that one day we will stand before God debt-free of sin. All the consequences of sin are taken care of on the cross of forgiveness provided by Jesus.

WITH HIS WOUNDS WE ARE HEALED
     Every wound Jesus experienced was the salve that healed the wounds of sin in our life. The suffering that God, in the flesh, suffered for the pain and suffering that sin causes in our life. We do not have to suffer the consequences of sin and separation from God any longer because of Jesus.
     Oh what a Savior!!!! May we never be gospel hardened concerning Jesus. May we reflect, meditate, and think often of all that Jesus, the perfect lamb of God and Savior of the world, accomplished for us. To God be the glory, for great things he has done…… OH WHAT A SAVIOR!!!!!!!

Because of His Grace ~Pastor David

Jesus In Song of Songs .. Our Eternal Love .. .. September 10, 2017

My beloved is mine, and I am his.  Song of Solomon 2:16 ESV

     When reading Song of Solomon, you realize that if this were a screen play movie, it would not have a G rating. This book is very descriptive of the love a man has for his bride and proper timing of exercising that love. Personal, intimate, longing, pure, commitment, physical descriptive, and faithful are just a few of the words that describe this relationship. What do we learn from this book about the love of Jesus for us? While this book is a beautiful description of the physical and emotional make up of the relationship between a man and his bride as well as the intenseness of that relationship, as Christians we are the bride of Christ, and we need to realize the intenseness of His love for us. Love, not in the romantic ways described in the Song of Songs, but rather in a personal relationship with one who has done everything to prove and give intentional love. This love longs to reach out to those to whom he loved and died for. It shows and proves His intentional love. This is not just a casual love that comes and goes, but an eternal love without end. It is love bonging for the one for whom it was intended…. His bride.
How should we as Christians/His bride respond to such love?

My Beloved Is Mine
     We acknowledge him as our Savior. Mary the mother of Jesus, knowing she was carrying Jesus, God’s only Son, spoke these words. “My should magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.” Luke 1:46-47. As Christians, we have the Holy Spirit and we should have ownership of this fact. Our spirit should rejoice in God my Savior. As Mary could not hide the fact that she was pregnant with the Son of God, it should be evident to all those with whom we have contact that we bear the Holy Spirit in our lives. Christians should announce the fact that we love Jesus, and as willingly as a bride would show the ring of engagement, we show the ring of engagement by the Holy Spirit in our lives. We do all this as a result of His love for us.  We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19

I Am His
     As the old song says, “Now I belong to Jesus, Not for the years of time alone, but for eternity,” Jesus is our eternal love because he made it so on Calvary. the reason we are His is because we have been bought with a price.  Your were bought with a price, So glorify God with your body. 1 Corinthians 6:20 ESV  As a groom would purchase a wedding ring and place it upon the finger of this bride, so Jesus gave us the seal of the Holy Spirit and placed it in our hearts. The bride of Christ – what a precious privilege to be recognized as such and to be in a relationship with one who loved me so much that he was willing to, and did, die for me. Died to redeem me from my past and give me an eternal future. Undeserving as I am, He still loved me and willingly did so.

     Perhaps we have Song of Songs because it shows the love that can only be experienced in an Unadulterated relationship. A relationship that involved mind, body, and soul. So it is, not in a physical way but in an intimate relationship with Jesus. As a man would give a woman his last name in marriage, so Christ gave me His name … Christian. As a bride would and should remain faithful to only her groom whose name she bears, so should we, as the bride of Christ, remain faithful to only Him. What a joy to have eternal love in Christ alone and to be called His bride.

Because of His Grace ~ Pastor David

Jesus In Ecclesiastes .. Our Hope .. 2 Thessalonians 16-17 September 3, 2017

     Now may our Lord Jesus Christ , and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good HOPE through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word. 2 Thessalonians 2: 16-17 ESV

     The word vanity is used thirty plus times in the ESV translation of the book of Ecclesiastes. The first and last chapter has this verse, “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.” Pretty much the book describes everything we do as vanity and can leave you feeling a bit like, what’s the point of living, for it all comes to nothing. That would be true, if the reality of Jesus wasn’t. It is true that everything in this world and its experiences may come to nothing, but a life lived in Christ, is a life that has purpose and meaning. Purpose and meaning because Jesus is eternal and all that is done for Him will never come to nothing. We have hope because of his grace, which comforts our hearts and establishes meaning in life in every good work and word.

 
COMFORT OF HEART:
     Jesus says to those who are in Christ, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God believe also in me.” John 14:1 ESV …. “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” John 14:27 ESV What you believe will determine how you live. To be comforted in your heart, Jesus must be the focus of your life. You live believing who He is-the Son of God; and what He has done- saved you by His grace.

 
ESTABLISHED IN GOOD WORKS:
     For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 ESV … Let us hold fast the confession of our HOPE without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works. Hebrews 10:23-24 ESV Never let us waver from the fact that we are saved by the grace of God and not works. (Ephesians 2: 8-9) Let us also never waver from the fact that as a result of being saved by God, our life work will make evident that fact. James says it best, “Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show my faith by my works.” James 2:18 ESV

 
ESTABLISHED IN WORD:
     I have stored up you word in my heart, that I might not sin against you. Psalms 119:11 ESV … Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Psalms 119:105 ESV … I wait for the Lord, my soul waits and in his word I HOPE Psalms 130:5 ESV… God’s word is to be active in us, which is the evidence that we are established in Him and He is in our heart. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16 ESV 

 
     Life without Christ is truly vanity. However, because of Jesus, life has an eternal purpose that He will accomplish in every Christian. This gives hope in the present and the future because Jesus is here, and he is in the future. Vanity, what does that mean to the Christian?
It means nothing to those who are in Christ, living intentional for His purpose.

 
Because of His Grace ~ Pastor David

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