Tag Archives: Faith

The Best Foundation Is Jesus

Jesus loved to ask questions when He taught. By asking questions, He made His hearers THINK about their response before they answered. Jesus asked, according to the website Red Letter Challenge, 305 questions throughout the Gospels.

In this chapter alone Jesus asked 10 questions when being challenged and when teaching. This is His 10th Question.

People came to Jesus, crying out “Lord, Lord”. They wanted Jesus to do something for them. Jesus healed the lepers, the blind, the sick. But Jesus had something greater to give to those in need.
Jesus offered Himself as King of our lives.

Jesus IS Lord. When John the Baptist preached, his message was “Repent, for the Kingdom of God is at hand” (Matthew 3:2). When Jesus preached, His message was “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent and believe the gospel.” (Mark 1:15). The Gospel includes the “Kingdom of God”. Jesus is the King of the Kingdom. He “came to save HIS PEOPLE from their sins” (Matthew 1:21).

Jesus IS Lord. He cannot be anything less. Scripture is clear that “without holiness, no one shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14). Pastor Stephen J. Cole notes:

“Genuine saving faith always results in a life of progressive godliness. If a person claims to be saved, but has no hunger for God’s Word, no growing hatred of sin, and no growth in godly living, he needs to examine whether he is truly in the faith (2 Corinthians 13:5).”

The proof of salvation is that you want to please your Lord. John 3:16 – perhaps the most quoted text of Scripture in the Bible – says –

John 3:16 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.

It is true that salvation is a free gift of God. But once saved, you are brought into the Kingdom of God, and Christ is your King. Pastor John MacArthur wrote in his book… Continue reading

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The New Covenant Of The Heart

Look in verse 31. God is speaking to “the house of Israel, and … the house of Judah”. God saved these two “houses”, the Hebrew בַּיִת bayith, {pronounced bah’-yith}. This word is used to describe a “family”, as in “The Bayith of Buffaloe” (my family name). Israel is divided into two families at this writing. Now, this was not the way it was supposed to be. God said that He was going to make a NEW Covenant with the two houses of Jews – Israel and Judah – a covenant distinctly different from

Jeremiah 31:32 … the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt;

First of all, who was Judah and Israel when God first met those families, those peoples? They were a people in Egypt. The Bible says that one King of Egypt died. Judah and Israel were not TWO in Egypt, but they were one House, one bayith. The Bible tells us:

Exodus 1:8, 11, 13 (ESV) Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. … 11 .. Therefore {the Egyptians} set taskmasters over {the Jews/ Israel} to afflict them with heavy burdens. .. 13 {the Egyptians} ruthlessly made the people of Israel work as slaves 14 and made their lives bitter with hard service, in mortar and brick, and in all kinds of work in the field. In all their work they ruthlessly made them work as slaves.

Judah and Israel were only ONE Household in Egypt. They were a household of SLAVES. I think there is nothing worst than being a slave. To be taken against your will, to be made to do any labor, any debauched or evil thing, made to obey the voice of the Master. To be beaten, and tormented, and killed as no more than a beast of burden. To be sexually abused, at the whim of the Taskmasters. What a horror slavery is! … Continue reading

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The Joy Of Faith

We see toward the end of verse 25, “Joy of Faith”. When you live for Jesus, you will often find yourself in bad spots. The Apostle Paul had more than his share of bad spots. Saul met Jesus on the Damascus Road, and heeding His call became Paul the Apostle. When Ananias was told to go to Saul and lay hands on him, Ananias was initially hesitant. After all, the Saul had been terrorizing the Church. But Jesus told Ananias:

Acts 9:15-16 (ESV) “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel. 16 For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name.”

As Saul caused others to suffer for Satan’s sake, now Paul himself will suffer “for the sake of {Jesus}”. Oh, how Paul would suffer! Paul told the Church at Corinth:

2 Corinthians 1:8-10 (ESV) For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. 9 Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. 10 He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again.

The brighter and more flamboyant the LIGHT, the greater the DARKNESS will hate it.

Paul said that he was so distressed that “we despaired of life itself”. That is a profound statement. This means that Paul got so discouraged that he and those with him welcomed death. This is a state of advanced depression, where life has lost its savor. Paul was like that poor old Saint Job who cried out:… Continue reading

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We Desperately Need God In Us

You can be religious. You can keep the Law. You can follow God for a time. But if you are not born again of the Spirit, indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God, your false faith will not last. No faith that is primarily of works will save. Salvation is by faith in Christ Jesus. The Temple died after Israel rejected Jesus Christ as Messiah. Today, those who are born again of the Spirit (John 3:1, 3, 7; 1 Peter 1:3) through faith in Jesus Christ are the Temple of God (1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 3:16-17; 2 Corinthians 6:14-16; Ephesians 2:21).

And this Temple cannot be torn down by anything but faithlessness. Let us bind our hearts to Jesus, for the glory of God forever. … Continue reading

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Repent and Rise To Serve The Lord

Those who have been saved by the Grace of God should also be gracious and loving to others. 1st John 3:14 states:

We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.

The Scripture tells us:

1 Corinthians 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

Like recovering Israel, we are to live our lives so as to please our God. God calls His people to have a different type of love from what the secular world has. We have a different Source (our Savior, not our selves), a different sustaining power (God the Holy Spirit) and a different goal (not self satisfaction, but God’s satisfaction). May God bless us as we put Him first in our daily lives. Amen and Amen. Continue reading

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A Couple Of “F” Words You Need To Know

Salvation is a FREE GIFT from God. I agree with this statement. It is supported by the Scripture. The words “FREE GIFT” are only found together in these texts:

Romans 5:14-18 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. 15 But not as the offense, so also is the free gift. For if through the offense 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. 16 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 offenses unto justification. 17 For if by one man’s offense 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.) 18 Therefore as by the offense 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.

Salvation is a FREE GIFT from God. It is purchased by Jesus, delivered by the Holy Spirit, and planned by God the Father. However, we need to be careful that we are defining the word “FREE” as GOD DEFINES “FREE”, and NOT as SATAN DEFINES “FREE”.

When Satan says something is “FREE”, he means,
“absolutely without consequence”

Illustrate: Yet Satan’s “FREE” is often a lie. The other day, I was leaving a discount market and heard that there was a large box of FREE items at the front door. I, like everyone else, loves FREE stuff. So I went out front and, accompanied by a mother and her daughter, went through that box. I found what I expected – junk! But I picked up a few things. I picked up a set of coasters with my “preferred pronouns” on it…. Continue reading

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The Wall Is Repaired Through Unity

We have been studying the Book of Nehemiah, and how that wonderful Book relates to the Church today. God expects His Church not to languish, but to grow. As the Church we are called to promote the Kingdom of God in this present world. Jesus sent us with a specific commission to tell others about Him and His Gospel, and to be the light of God in this present darkness.

Israel was destroyed because they got away from the Word of God, and started to love themselves more than they loved God.

God sent a series of enemies into Israel – Babylon, Assyria, and Medo-Persia – to punish His people and awaken them from their sinful slumber. The Church in America today is in much the same place. We are a “Post Christian” nation because we as Christians have not stood at our post. Years ago the great Evangelist Dwight L. Moody said:

“A great many people have got a false idea about the church. They have got an idea that the church is a place to rest in … to get into a nicely cushioned pew, and contribute to the charities, listen to the minister, and do their share to keep the church out of bankruptcy is all they want. The idea of work for them—actual work in {and through} the church—never enters their minds.”

This is a poor concept of the Church. God calls His Church to work together for His glory. The reason that God gave us ministers:… Continue reading

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Enduring And Eternal Faith

James came to know Jesus as more than a stepbrother, but as the very Son of God, and was with the disciples on the Day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was given. Why did the brothers not believe in Jesus prior to the upper room? It is very possible that – as siblings – they were envious of the respect that Jesus received from Mary and Joseph. It is also true that the god of this world (Satan, the devil) blinds the minds of the unbelievers (2 Corinthians 4:4). In order for a person to be saved the “God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” must shine in our hearts, giving us a knowledge of Christ. No person is ever saved unless “the Father Who sent Jesus DRAWS them” (John 6:44). Salvation is a supernatural work that God does in our lives from start to finish.

The main point of James’ writing is that …. Continue reading

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Jesus Is From Above

John 8:17-24 It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true. 18 I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me. 19 Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also. 20 These words spake Jesus in the treasury, as he taught in the temple: and no man laid hands on him; for his hour was not yet come. 21 Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come. 22 Then said the Jews, Will he kill himself? because he saith, Whither I go, ye cannot come. 23 And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.

No One Ever Spoke As Jesus Did

When a jeweler wants to show off the beauty of his diamonds, he does not put the diamonds on a white, clean surface. No, the jeweler puts the diamonds against a black surface, usually black velvet. The black focuses the eye on the light reflecting through the facets of the diamond. Displayed against the darkness, the beauty of the diamond comes out.

As our Lord Jesus ministered on this earth, the times that His beauty was most seen was when He was seen against a black surface. Many times we see Jesus being approached by those who were under the blackness of sickness and disease. Other times Jesus was seen against the darkness of sinful man. But Jesus shone brightest when He was seen against the darkness of self… Continue reading

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Being A Good Soldier Of Christ

Unless believers pass on Bible truths to the next generation, the Gospel light cannot continue to burn. The Books of Timothy were written by the Apostle Paul to pass on Biblical truths in a world covered with darkness.

Paul met Timothy (or his Roman name, Timotheus) in Acts 16 during his second missionary journey. We read:

Acts 16:1-3 Then came {Paul} to Derbe and Lystra: {located in Southern Asia Minor & Turkey} and, behold, a certain disciple was there, named Timotheus, {or Timothy} the son of a certain woman, which was a Jewess, {Eunice} and believed; but his father was a Greek: 2 Which was well reported of by the brethren that were at Lystra and Iconium. 3 Him would Paul have to go forth with him; and took and circumcised him because of the Jews which were in those quarters: for they knew all that his father was a Greek.

Timothy gave his life to the Lord, and committed to following the Apostle Paul as he moved to start new churches. Though Timothy’s mother Eunice and grandmother Lois were believing Jews (see 2 Timothy 1:5), Timothy’s father was a Gentile. Because of this Timothy had never been circumcised. Though the Apostle believed that:

Colossians 3:11 … there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.

Circumcision is not necessary for salvation. Nonetheless, Paul asked Timothy to be circumcised since he had a Jewish mother, so that his lack of circumcision would not hinder his ministry among the Jews. Many of the Pharisees would not even listen to an uncircumcised person. There’s a principle in this that we need to understand. … Continue reading

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