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Ambassador4Christ
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« Reply #60 on: February 23, 2004, 01:37:52 PM »

CHRIST OUR PASSOVER IS SACRIFICED FOR US





When Israel came out of the land of Egypt and the Lord's gracious forbearance with Pharaoh required that he release the people of God from slavery, that Egyptian did not revere the Lord and would not let God's people go. On the fateful night of "the Lord's Passover", Pharaoh arrogantly hardened his heart against the Lord (Ex.5:1;14:15-18,27).

God told the Israelites to take a lamb, roast it with fire, and bitter herbs, and eat it in haste, for "it is the Lord's Passover", and "strike [the blood] on the two side posts and on the upper door post" of each house (Ex.12:1-11).

"For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and
against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord."

It is not Pharaoh and his Egyptian "gods", but Jehovah who rules the world!

"And... when I see the blood, I will pass over you... " (Ex.12:12,13,29,30).

Now we come to the New Testament, and as our Lord celebrated "Passover" with His disciples, He instituted "the Lord's Supper", a
memorial of His shed blood, the revelation of which Christ first delivered to Paul. It was later revealed to "His holy apostles and pro-phets by the Spirit" (ICor.1:18; 15:1-4; Rom. 3:25,26; 5:9,10; Eph.3:5; IPet.1:11,12).

That Christ was born of "a virgin" makes His blood efficacious to save us from our sins (Matt.1:18-25; John 1:47; Rom.5:12; 8:3; Heb.
7:26).

This is why the Apostle Paul could say of the Lamb of God on Calvary's cross:

"FOR EVEN CHRIST OUR PASSOVER IS SACRIFICED FOR US" (ICor.5:7).

Now we see that not only were Israelites redeemed by blood in the Exodus of Egypt some 1500 years Before Christ (Ex.12:11-14), the typification of which is revealed to Paul, but we also learn that Christ's "Passover" blood now saves believing Jews and Gentiles
(ICor.11:25).

"Neither by the blood of goats and calves, BUT BY HIS OWN BLOOD HE ENTERED IN ONCE INTO THE HOLY PLACE, having obtained eternal redemption for us" (Heb. 9:12).

By Russell S. Miller
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Should this devotional be a blessing to you, maybe you have a friend or family member that would like to start receiving the daily word. You may forward this to them, by copy and paste method,  and they can use the below link to subscribe. We love to meet new people.

Eph 3:9  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Daily Inspirational

WEB SITE
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E-Mail GracentheTruth@aol.com

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.


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« Reply #61 on: February 24, 2004, 04:22:57 PM »

Ultimate Victory is Sure





Discouragement is one of the formidable enemies that can prevent a Christian from realizing his destiny in God. It can prevent that child of God from experiencing the wonderful portion that God has assigned for him in his lifetime. A good portion of the people in the body of Christ must decisively shake off the poverty rags of discouragement and depression from their lives. They may have "good" and "valid" reasons to be discouraged and downcast. However, the discouragement and depression can become effective tools of the enemy to steal from them and rob them of their visions and their dreams.







Setbacks and "failures" in life are just temporal - provided one dare to courageously release them, put his life and his future in the hands of the good God and move forward decisively. God's divine empowerment and providence will surely follow.

Nothing done for the kingdom of God is ever wasted. Future victory is sure.







1 Corinthians 15:58
So, my dear brothers, since future victory is sure, be strong and steady, always abounding in the Lord's work, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever wasted as it would be if there were no resurrection. (TLB)

Victory is sure. You may not experience it immediately but if you don't give up, victory is sure.

Romans 8:37-38
Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. (NKJ)







The phrase "more than conquerors" came from a Greek word "hupernikao" that means to vanquish beyond, i.e. gain a decisive victory. Decisive victory is yours in due season.

The Living Bible translates this beautiful verse as

Romans 8:37
but despite all this, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ who loved us enough to die for us.(TLB)

Overwhelming victory is yours, beloved of the Lord. Jesus paid a hundred percent price for your total victory.







As the sons of Korah (who were temple musicians and assistants) penned this beautiful verse, "The LORD will command His loving kindness in the daytime, And in the night His song shall be with me-A prayer to the God of my life. (Psalms 42:Cool,

my utmost prayer for you is that your faith and your walk with God will never be shaken by any circumstance or any seemingly impossible situation. Overwhelming Victory Is Yours. Arise and March on!


By Rev Dr John Lim


Blessings!
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Should this devotional be a blessing to you, maybe you have a friend or family member that would like to start receiving the daily word. You may forward this to them, by copy and paste method,  and they can use the below link to subscribe. We love to meet new people.

Eph 3:9  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Daily Inspirational

WEB SITE
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www.graceandthetruth.com

E-Mail GracentheTruth@aol.com

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.


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« Reply #62 on: February 27, 2004, 08:25:06 PM »

"SEPARATED UNTO THE GOSPEL OF GOD"





What is meant by the phrase, "separated unto the gospel of God"? The Word "separated" means simply "set apart" of course. God’s children have always been "set apart" as sacred unto Himself. However, we must not confuse Paul (as many do) with the other apostles. Though he considered himself "less than the least of all saints" (Eph. 3:Cool he  was, nevertheless, "THE APOSTLE OF THE GENTILES" (Rom.11:13) and "a chosen vessel unto Christ" (Acts 9:15). But "chosen" for what? Ah, this is where our text comes in:

"Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an Apostle, separated unto the Gospel of God" (Rom.1:1).

Since our subject is Paul’s "separation unto the gospel of God", we would ask, what is this good news for which Paul is separated"? And, as always, the Bible is the greatest com-mentary upon the Bible, because Galatians 1:15,16 answers that question clearly, increas-ing our light and understanding upon the subject:

"But when it pleased God, WHO SEPARATED ME FROM MY MOTHER’S WOMB, and called me by His grace, to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood."

God chose this man from before his birth, just as "He chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world" (Eph.1:4). But wait there’s something else--"He called him by His grace." I Timothy 1:15,16 confirms that there, in Acts 9,Saul of Tarsus, the great persecutor,
was SAVED and called by the "grace of God" alone (Acts 26:13-19). But more, he is saved that God may "reveal His Son in him." It is this "revelation"--ROMANS 16:25,26--that he was "SEPARATED" unto!

A revelation that was not made known to the prophets! A dilemma that baffled the Phar-isees! And frustrated Pilate in his own court room! The disciples did not comprehend it! And neither could the devil figure it out! A Mystery that even "the angels desire to look into"!

This "gospel of God" concerned "His Son" and the types and shadows in prophecy regarding the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ (Rom.1:1; ICor. 15:3,4; Gal.1:11,12,16; IPet. 1:12).

BY RUSSELL S. MILLER
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Should this devotional be a blessing to you, maybe you have a friend or family member that would like to start receiving the daily word. You may forward this to them, by copy and paste method,  and they can use the below link to subscribe. We love to meet new people.

Eph 3:9  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Daily Inspirational

WEB SITE
Grace And The Truth
www.graceandthetruth.com

E-Mail GracentheTruth@aol.com

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.


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« Reply #63 on: February 29, 2004, 08:46:31 AM »

"IN"



What a big-little word 'in' is! It is a word of inclusion, acceptance, of safety, and of in-volvement.  It is also a word of location: we live IN Seattle; we live IN the U.S.A.
The Word of God employs this little pre-position to express profound truths.  Especially in this truth  regarding the believer in this present dispensation of the Grace of God. Several things are said about this.
The believer is 'IN CHRIST JESUS'.  Nearly every epistle of Paul, the Apostle, begins with the statement, 'to the saints IN Christ Jesus' (Phil. 1:1). Every truly saved person is 'in Christ Jesus'.  He can be nowhere else!  True, in the physical, he is 'in the flesh' as long as he lives on this earth; but in relation to his spirit, he is vitally and eternally 'IN Christ Jesus'. He was put into Christ not by works or rituals of any sort. God the Holy Spirit baptized him into Christ the moment he believed.  As such, he is now' accepted in the beloved' (Eph. 1:6). He is 'in the sphere of the beloved', to put it more accurately.



'In the Beloved,' accepted am I,
Risen, ascended, and seated on high;
Saved from all sin thro' His infinite grace,
With the redeemed ones accorded a place.
'In the Beloved,' God's marvelous grace,
Calls me to dwell in this wonderful place;
God sees my Saviour and then He sees me
'In the Beloved,' accepted and free.'



No wonder the Apostle could victoriously declare: 'There is therefore now no condem-nation to them that are in Christ Jesus', and nothing 'shall be able to separate me from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus my Lord' (Romans 8:1-39).
The believer is 'IN GOD'. 'For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ, IN God' (Col. 3:3). To the saints who lived in Thessalonica Paul wrote: '...to the church of the Thessalon-ians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ' ( II Thes. 1:1). What a fantastic truth!!  Because Jesus Christ is God's eternal Son, and because He is 'one' with His Father (John 10:30), all who are truly 'in Christ' are also 'in God the Father! That is security! in-deed  - eternal security! It is far more secure than money or jewels locked up in the largest, strongest, well-constructed vault in any bank known to man. Satan, man, or any other creation cannot reach into God and pluck you out!  Blessed assurance!
The believer is 'IN THE SPIRIT'. This Paul declares in Romans 8:9: "However you are not in the flesh (the fallen Adamic nature) but in the spirit if indeed the spirit of God dwells in you.' This would seem to be sheer pre-sumption had not God said this! But praise be to God, it is so!  We are IN the Spirit. Now it is up to us to learn to 'walk in the spirit' (Gal. 5:16)!
Are you on the 'in' today --'in Christ', 'in God the Father', 'in the Spirit'? If not, then call on the Lord by faith and trust Him now to accept you 'in the Beloved'.

Grace, Peace, and Love,
Pastor Paul Hume
to be continued
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Should this devotional be a blessing to you, maybe you have a friend or family member that would like to start receiving the daily word. You may forward this to them, by copy and paste method,  and they can use the below link to subscribe. We love to meet new people.

Eph 3:9  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Daily Inspirational

WEB SITE
Grace And The Truth
www.graceandthetruth.com

E-Mail GracentheTruth@aol.com

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.


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« Reply #64 on: February 29, 2004, 08:48:33 AM »

'IN'
Part Two




Last week we began to look at the truth packed into the little word 'IN' as used in the New Testament.  We observed how the true believer (the Christian) is 'in Christ Jesus,' 'in God the Father,' and 'in the Spirit.' He is vit-ally joined to all three members of the bless-ed Godhead by the baptism of the Holy Spirit (Romans 6:3-5; 1Corinthians 12:13, Ephesians 4:5). We now want to carry this blessed sub-ject a little further and note some more truths therein.
The believer is 'IN THE FAITH,' Paul the Apostle warned the professing Ch ristians who lived in Corinth. 'Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves!' ( 2 Cor. 13:5, NAS). Note the phrase: 'in the faith.' To Titus, Paul wrote: 'Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect...' (1:1). Paul also declared, 'There is.....one Lord, one faith, one baptism...'(Eph 4:5).  What does Paul mean? Is this 'Protestant faith'? Is it 'the Catholic faith'? Is it 'the Presbyterian faith,' etc? NO. It is the spiritual persuasion of heart that God gives to everyone who is truly saved, resting upon the body of Truth in the Bible, especial-ly through Paul's epistles. This faith comes from above. It is 'the faith of the Son of God' (Gal. 2:20). And every truly born-again person shares in that God-given faith.  He is 'in the faith.' Are you?
The believer is 'IN THE HOUSEHOLD OF FAITH.' Paul speaks twice of this: '.......those who are of the household of faith' (Gal. 6:10), and '......fellow-citizens with the saints, and are of God's household' (Eph. 2:19). Now a household involves a family. The word in Greek means 'kindred.' This means brothers and sisters and parents. In this case, the Word of God makes it clear that God the Father is the head of this household, 'the first-born among many brethren' (Romans 8:29). All who are 'in Christ Jesus' in this economy of the grace of God are 'adopted' sons and daughters (see Ephesians 1:5-6 and II  Corin-thians 6:18). How blessed it really is to realize this great truth: 'I am, by the grace of God, a member of God's household; and all of us who are truly saved are one big family!' Do you look upon others who know the Lord as your brothers and sisters?
The believer is 'IN THE TRUTH.' 'What is truth?' (John 18:38.) 'I am the Way the Truth, and the Life,' declared the Lord Jesus 'But you did not learn Christ in this way, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus' (Eph. 4:20-21). Thus John the Apostle could write to believ-ers: 'I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth' (III John 4). Before we were regenerated by the Spirit of God (whom our Lord called 'the spirit of truth' (John 14:17), we were all part of 'the lie' - under the power of Satan (I John 5:19, Col. 1:13). Now 'we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life' (I John 5:20). As  result, we must practice walking in the truth, 'speaking the truth in love,' and telling the truth. All phoni-ness and hypocrisy and lying is wrong! It has no place in the Christian life!  Why? Because we are 'in the truth.' Are you? Do you live truthfully?  You CAN by the grace of God!

Grace, Peace, Love
Pastor Paul Hume
to be continued

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Should this devotional be a blessing to you, maybe you have a friend or family member that would like to start receiving the daily word. You may forward this to them, by copy and paste method,  and they can use the below link to subscribe. We love to meet new people.

Eph 3:9  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Daily Inspirational

WEB SITE
Grace And The Truth
www.graceandthetruth.com

E-Mail GracentheTruth@aol.com

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

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« Reply #65 on: March 01, 2004, 01:39:28 PM »

'IN'
Part 3




What a 'big-little' word we have found 'IN' to be in the Word of God. We look back to the Lord's words through Moses to captive Israel in Exodus 6:6-8: '...I will bring you OUT from under the burdens of the Egyptians...then I will take you for my people, and I will be your God...and I will bring you IN unto the land....' Note how Jehovah purposed to bring His chosen people out in order to bring them in. OUT of bondage and IN to blessing with battles involved, however).
This is similar to what God does when He saves individuals today. He marvelously takes them; out of death, into life; out of sin, into His righteousness, out of Satan's power, into the Kingdom of His beloved Son; out of darkness, into His light; out of enmity, into His love; out of being alienated, into His adopted family; out of unbelief, into true faith!  No wonder we can sing:
'Out of my bondage, sorrow and night,
Into Thy freedom, gladness and light,
Jesus, I come to Thee.
Out of my sickness into Thy heath,
Out of my want and into Thy wealth
Out of my sin and into Thyself,
Jesus, I come to Thee.'
Let us meditate together more on this being 'brought in.' We have seen how the believer is 'in Christ,' ' in God the Father,' 'in the Spirit.' 'in the faith,' 'in the household of faith,' and 'in the truth.' No let us note another reality the true believer in Christ has been brought in to.
The believer is 'IN THE LIGHT.' In the words of the commission of the risen Lord to Paul the Apostle, we read: '..I am sending you to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light' (Acts 26:18). On this account, Paul reminds us: 'For you were formally darkness, but now are you light in the Lord; walk as children of light' (Eph. 5:Cool. What is 'darkness', and what is 'light'? Dark-ness, as referred to in the Scriptures, when it is used morally or spiritually, speaks of Satan's power, the devastating effects of sin, and ignorance of God and His Truth. Thus all people--religious or not---are 'darkness' as well as 'IN darkness' before they become saved. Even the most skilled, sanguine, 'sharp' people are 'in the dark' as far as God goes. But when the Holy Spirit carries out His pre-salvation work in the heart, and then the sinner receives the Lord Jesus Christ into his heart by God-given faith, the 'light comes on' in his heart. For God, Who said, 'Light shall shine out of darkness,' is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ (2 Cor. 4:6, N.A.S.). This is also why the Apostle John could testify, 'And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us an understanding...' (1 John 5:20). 'God is light,' declares John, and every true Christian has been brought into that Light. Now we are to 'walk in the light, as He is in the light' in order to experience daily 'fellowship with one another'---with our Father as well as each other.

Dear Reader, are you 'in the Light' today? If not, come in to God's Light today by believ-ing on the Lord Jesus Christ, and then start walking day by day in that 'marvelous light.'

Grace, Peace and Love,
Pastor Paul Hume
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Should this devotional be a blessing to you, maybe you have a friend or family member that would like to start receiving the daily word. You may forward this to them, by copy and paste method,  and they can use the below link to subscribe. We love to meet new people.

Eph 3:9  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Daily Inspirational

WEB SITE
Grace And The Truth
www.graceandthetruth.com

E-Mail GracentheTruth@aol.com

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.




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« Reply #66 on: March 05, 2004, 03:33:42 PM »

CRYING AGAINST GOD

The passengers on the train were uneasy as they sped along through the dark, stormy night. The lightning was flashing, black clouds were rolling and the train was travel-ing fast. The fear and tension among the passengers was evident. One little fellow, however, sitting all by himself, seemed utterly unaware of the storm or the speed of the train.  He was amusing himself with a few toys.  One of the passengers spoke to him, "Sonny, I see you are alone on the train.  Aren't you afraid to travel alone on such a stormy night?" The lad looked up with a smile and answered, "No, ma'am, I ain't afraid. My daddy's the engineer."

Only God's people have the assurance that the Heavenly Father is the "Engineer" as they travel through the storms of life and that He is working all thing "After the counsel of His own will" (Eph. 1:11; Rom. 8:28).

A.W.Pink, in his excellent little book "The Sovereignty of God: says in part: A true recognition of God's Sovereignty will ex-clude all murmuring." This is self-evident, yet the thought deserves to be dwelt upon. It is natural to complain when we are deprived of those things upon which we had set our hearts. We are apt to regard our possessions as ours unconditionally. We feel that, when we have prosecuted our plans with prudence and diligence, we are entitled to success; that when by dint of hard work we have accumu-lated a 'competence', we deserve to keep and enjoy it; that when we are surrounded by  a happy family, no power may lawfully enter the charmed circle and strike down a loved one; and if in any of these  cases, disappoint-ment, bankruptcy or death actually comes, the perverted instinct of the human heart is to cry out against God. But in the one who, by grace, has recognized God's Sovereignty, such murmuring is silenced, and instead, there is a bowing to the Divine Will with an acknowledgment that He has not afflicted us as sorely as we deserve.

To which we add: How blessed to know that God doeth all things well when it con-cerns His own. Surly He never makes a mistake. What may seem at the time to be an almost unbearable trial, may prove to be a blessing in disguise. The Apostle Paul wrote, "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who are called according to His purpose," (Rom 8:28). To have perfect peace in any circumstance, it is necessary to rest completely in the Lord. "And the peace of God which passeth all understanding shall keep your hearts and mind though Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:7) We who are saved have the best "Engineer," who will always steer a course  according to His Will and purpose.  Amen!
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Should this devotional be a blessing to you, maybe you have a friend or family member that would like to start receiving the daily word. You may forward this to them, by copy and paste method,  and they can use the below link to subscribe. We love to meet new people.

Eph 3:9  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Daily Inspirational

WEB SITE
Grace And The Truth
www.graceandthetruth.com

E-Mail GracentheTruth@aol.com

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

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« Reply #67 on: March 05, 2004, 03:39:17 PM »

WHICH APPEARING?

"So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto  salvation" (Heb.9:28).

When our Lord first came to earth, He came "TO PUT AWAY SIN by the sacrifice of Him-self". This one infinite sacrifice was the great anti-type of all the Old Testament sacrifices. They were offered "year by year continually" (10:1); indeed, "it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats" could ever "take away sins" (10:4). But Christ, by  His one sacrifice, "the sacrifice of Himself", put away sin, settling the sin question forever for believers.

But what about the latter part of our text, concerning His appearing "the second time"? Does this refer to His Second Coming to earth?  Hardly.

The second time our Lord comes to earth He will not come apart from the sin question. Rather He will come in wrath TO JUDGE SIN.

"Because He [God] hath appointed a day in the which HE WILL JUDGE THE WORLD IN RIGHTEOUSNESS by that Man whom He hath ordained, whereof He hath given assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the  dead" (Acts 17:31).

It is concerning this return of Christ to earth that we read:

"AND IN RIGHTEOUSNESS DOTH HE JUDGE AND MAKE WAR" (Rev.19:11).

Clearly, our Lord’s appearing "apart from sin" cannot refer to His return to earth to judge the world for sin. And notice carefully: If
our Lord were to catch up His Church after the Great Tribulation on His way to judge the world, as some teach, this would still be His
return to judge the world for sin. Moreover, Hebrews 9:28 refers to our Lord’s appearing, not to those who reject Him, but to those who
"look for Him".






To these--and we are among them!--He will appear, not in wrath to judge sin, but in love, "APART FROM SIN unto salvation".

In other words, we have here another reference to the rapture of "the Church, which is His Body". True, we will receive rewards or suffer loss for our service and conduct as believers, but our sins were fully  paid for by that "one sacrifice" in which "Christ was offered to bear the sins of many". This appearing, "apart from sin", then, is the
"appearing" to which Paul so often refers, and in Titus 2:13 he refers to it as a "blessed hope".

"LOOKING FOR THAT BLESSED HOPE AND THE GLORIOUS APPEARING OF THE GREAT GOD AND OUR SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST" (Tit.2:13).

BY RUSSELL S. MILLER
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« Reply #68 on: March 05, 2004, 07:54:09 PM »

SEALED IN CHRIST SAFE FOREVER



       IN CHRIST YOU ALSO TRUSTED, AFTER YOU HEARD THE WORD OF TRUTH, THE GOSPEL OF YOUR SALVATION; IN WHOM ALSO, HAVING BELIEVED YOU WERE SEALED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT OF PROMISE.
                                                                   THE LETTER TO THE EPHESIANS 1:13

       We see in this Bible verse God's se-quence of salvation and find the answer to the question:        

     Can a person who has trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ as his or her Savior ever be lost again?...Never!

     First, you heard the good news---you heard the word of truth, the gospel; of your salvation. No one can ever be saved who does not first hear the good news, for "faith comes by hearing" (Romans 10:17). Some-how, whether by reading the Bible itself or a booklet, or perhaps by hearing a radio or TV broadcast, in church, or from a friend, we heard the good news of salvation---how the Lord Jesus Christ loved us in our sinful condition and took our sins upon Himself. That He took the blame and accepted the responsibility for all of our sins when He died on the cross, and that God raised Him  from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).  The cross was the payment for our sins; Christ's empty tomb is God's receipt that the price has been paid in full. God has once and for all accept-ed the death of his Son as the full payment for all our sins (Colossians 2:13).

     Second, you believed in Him---Paul writes in Ephesians 1:13, You trusted in Christ.

     We gave up "trying to be good enough" to get into heaven. We gave up trusting in our-selves, our own efforts, our religion and our church, and instead, we began to trust in, rely upon, depend on the Lord Jesus Christ alone to save us. We believed that He took the blame for our sins and died for us, to pay the penalty once and for all and forever (Hebrews 10:10-18).

     Third, you were sealed in Him---in whom (Christ) also, having believed you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise. At the moment that we trusted in His Son as our own Savior, not only did God forgive us for all our sins---past, present, and future (Colossians 2:13)----and counts us righteous in His sight with a righteousness not our own (Philipppians 3:9), but He also sealed us in His Son forever.

     The Apostle Paul tells us about this in many places in his letters:

     He wrote in 1 Corinthians 12:13, "For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body." The moment that we believed, we were all baptized by the Holy Spirit into the body of the Lord Jesus. This was not water bap-tism, but a baptism done "without hands" (Colossians 2:11-12) by the Spirit Himself, who puts us into the Lord Jesus Christ. We became part "of His flesh and of His bones" (Ephesians 5:30) as God the Holy Spirit fused us into and united us with the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.

     Not only did the Spirit baptize us into Christ, but He also sealed us in Him. An envelope is sealed to insure that the contents stay inside and reach their destination. A jar is sealed to prevent  contamination. A is for safety, security, and assurance. God says that the Holy Spirit has sealed us for the day of redemption (Ephesians 4:30) He has sealed us in Christ unto the day that the Lord Jesus Christ returns from heaven to redeem us, together to Himself forever.

to be continued
Pastor Dennis Kiszonasseal  
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2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

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« Reply #69 on: March 06, 2004, 10:35:27 AM »

SEALED IN CHRIST SAFE FOREVER
PART 2




     God not only saves us, but God also wants us to know that we are safe and secure in that salvation; to be able to say, "I know that I'm going to heaven, not because of my own efforts, but because the Lord Jesus Christ paid for all my sins by His own death on the cross. I am trusting in Him as my Savior, and now I am sealed in Him, safe forever."

     There are many today who believe that a Christian can lose his or her salvation---that we really can't be totally sure that we are going to heaven--until we get there! There are four reasons that some do not believe in the sealing and security of the believer.

     1.) Many  people, even many religious leaders, don't really understand that salvation is by grace. Salvation today does not depend upon our own efforts, religious activities, or good works. Salvation  depends wholly upon the death of Christ on the cross for us. There at the cross He said , "It is finished." So there is no more work to do. All we can do is agree with God, and let him save us  by His  grace (see Romans 4:5 and Eph.  2:8-9)

     2.) Others do not "rightly divide the word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15), and if we don't 'sort the mail' before we read it, we're going to become very confused by the Bible!

     For instance, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, the four gospels, are not "our mail" in the Bible, they are not addressed to us. Christ in His earthly ministry was not speaking to us today, but to the people of Israel (see Matthew 15:24). The Book of Hebrews is addressed to the Hebrews obviously! The Letter to James is addressed to "the twelve tribes (of Israel) scattered abroad" (James 1:1). In fact, Peter, Jams and John by agreement with the Apostle Paul confined their ministries, and their writings, to the nation of Israel (Galatians 2:7-9).

     But "our mail" in the Bible is the letters written by the Apostle Paul. The Lord Jesus Christ gave to Paul the gospel of the Grace of God (Acts 20:24) and the dispensa-tion of the grace of God for us today (Ephesians 3:1-2). Only Paul writes about being baptized by the Holy Spirit into Christ and being sealed in Him. This is part of the special ministry and message that the Lord Jesus gave to Paul for us today.

     3.) We need to be careful that we don't confuse salvation, which is God's gift to all who believe (Eph.2:8-9),  with rewards in heaven, which must be earned. Christians can lose their rewards by not living for the Lord,  but we can never lose our salvation. 1 Corinthians 3:12-15 and 9:24-27, and 2 Timothy 2:11-13 all warn of losing rewards if a believer is not faithful,  but Paul writes that even if a believer loses all his rewards "he himself shall be saved" (1Corinthians 3:15) because we are sealed in Christ.

     4.) Some oppose the teaching of the sealing and security of the believer because they fear it will lead to laxness in the Christian life; that a believer might reason, "I've trusted in Christ, my sins are all forgive, I'm, sealed and safe. So now it doesn't matter how I live. I can live as I please."  But Paul himself, who told us that we are sealed in Christ  from the moment that we put our trust in Him, also wrote, "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption." (Ephesians 4:30). The Holy Spirit has sealed us in Christ, and He will never leave us, but our lives can cause the Spirit joy or grief. How is your life making the Spirit feel right now?

     While some are concerned about whether they will get to heaven "someday," Paul writes to those who have trusted in Christ as their Savior that God "has raised up together and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ" (Eph. 2:6).  In Christ, as a member of His body, every believer is already seated in heaven and is already blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ (Eph. 1:3). That indeed is the exceeding riches of His grace!" (Eph. 2:7)

Pastor Dennis Kiszonas
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2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a  workman  that needeth  not  to  be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.                                                                                                                      

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« Reply #70 on: March 07, 2004, 01:29:28 PM »

THE AUTHORITY OF REALITY

IT IS ESSENTIAL to give people a chance of acting on the truth of God. The responsibility must be left with the individual; you can-not act for him, it must be his own deliberate act, but the evangelical message always leads a man to act.

The paralysis of refusing to act leaves a man exactly where he was before; when once he acts,  he is never the same. It is the fool-ishness of it that stands in the way of hundreds who have been convicted by the Spirit of God. Immediately I precipitate myself over into an act, that second I live —all the rest is existence. The moments when I truly live are the moments when I act with my whole will.

Never allow a truth of God that is brought home to your soul to pass without acting on it—not necessar-ily physically, but in will. Record it, with ink or with blood. The fee-blest saint who transacts busi-ness with Jesus Christ is emanci-pated the second he acts. All the almighty power of God is on his behalf. We come to the truth of God, we confess we are wrong, but go back again. Then we come up to it again, and go back—until we learn that we have no business to go back The last thing we seem  to do is to come to our redeeming Lord, but everyone who does knows that the dominating power of the world, the flesh and the devil is paralysed, not by your act, but because your act has linked you on to God and His redemptive power.



—by Oswald Chambers
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« Reply #71 on: March 11, 2004, 02:29:56 PM »

The Wonders of His Grace





Scripture Reading:
"For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was
rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty
might be rich."
-- II Corinthians 8:9

Whether the occasion is a holiday, a birthday celebration, or a graduation, it is customary to give a gift.  While some gifts are given out of necessity, for the most part, a gift is an expression of our love.  We normally bestow these tokens of our affection on those whom we feel deserve the honor.  But God's ways are not our ways.  He gave the gift of His beloved Son to His enemies.  That's a true love story!  Oh, the wonder of His grace that God sent His only begotten Son, the Son of His love, to save sinners like you and me while we were fleeing from the glory of His presence.  Little wonder the Apostle Paul says, "Thanks be unto God for His unspeak-able gift" (II Cor. 9:15).

The word "unspeakable" here has the idea of "indescribable."  The gifts I've received through the years were all describable.  Some may have been a little harder to describe than others, but describable nonetheless!  But the gift of God's dear Son is indescribable.  Who
can explain the incarnation, how the eternal Son of God left heaven's glory and took upon Himself the form of human flesh, yet was not
tainted with our sin.  Who can explain how Christ was wholly God and wholly human in one person?  These wonders can only be received through the eye of faith.

The manger and the Cross stand at the two extremes of our Lord's life, but they are connected by the tapestry of redemption.  Hence, "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners."  A love story that ends with a death is tragic; in contrast, the death of Christ is the greatest demonstration of love this world has ever seen.  How much does God love you?  He gave His only begotten Son to die on your behalf.  You see, Christ wasn't dying for His sin, He knew no sin; He
was dying for your sins and my sins at Calvary.  He was made sin for us that we might receive the righteousness of God in Him.  Have you trusted Him?

Surely you would never think of paying for a gift; why, the giver would be highly offended -- how much more so with God.  The payment
for your sins has already been furnished by the Giver; simply receive Him as a gift from God.  If you have, then why not thank Him today for His unspeakable gift?  After all, this is the Gift that includes all others!

Paul M. Sadler,
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« Reply #72 on: March 11, 2004, 02:37:53 PM »

THE RACE SET BEFORE US





As another New Year dawns its always wise to give the Scriptures our careful attention so as to please the One who paid the ultimate
sacrifice on account of our sins at Calvary, our wonderful Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

It is not that we merely wish to please Him, but our gratitude should manifest itself in the lives we live for Him. It was indeed for this
reason that the Apostle Paul has so much to say about "the race set before us".

"Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us" (Heb. 12:1).

As I opened my Bible in the study of this subject I discovered that the word "race" [agon], here, is only found in the following verses, having to do with the athlete in the race, rather than the course itself:

Philippians 1:30: "Having the same conflict which ye saw in me...."

Colossians 2:1: "...what great conflict I have for you...."

I Thessalonians 2:2: "...we were bold in our God to speak unto you the Gospel of God with much contention".

I Timothy 6:12: "Fight the good fight of faith...."

II Timothy 4:7: "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith".

Hebrews 12:1: "...the race that is set before us".

On the other hand, the Greek word stadion, "they which run in a race", is translated "furlongs" (the 220 yard dash), five times in our Bibles (Luke 24:13; John 6:19; 11:18; Rev. 14:20; 21:16) and, surprisingly only once in Paul's epistles where it is rendered "race" (ICor. 9:24).

The Apostle does not refer to the course, here, which the contestants ran in their Greeks games, but to the Christian life.

"Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain" (ICor.9:24).

Russell S. Miller
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« Reply #73 on: March 11, 2004, 02:42:35 PM »

ONE BODY IN CHRIST


So in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. (Romans 12:5)




One Body—the first and only time this is mentioned in all of Romans. The setting is a practical one where Paul, having finished the doctrinal portion of the letter, now turns to telling just how all the great truths of justification and redemption affect the life of the believer. Not only is he in Christ, but so also is every other believer. This makes us all one in Christ—one Body in Christ, to be exact—and this has many practical consequences.

Service to the whole Body is service to Christ since the Body is one and made up  of the many members. Since this Body has Christ as it's Head, Christ is served when  the members are served and the whole Body benefits! The illustration of the human body is too good to miss—or did God perhaps have that in mind a long time before? In any case, just as the many members of any body do not all do the same thing, neither do we as members of Christ's Body. Sometimes we lose sight of this great practical fact and spiritual truth. Any time we are wishing we were fitted differently so we could perform a different function in the Body, we are at that same time implying that God made a mis-take. He really should have fitted us for other service. We don't really mean to say so, but might not that actually be the case? We should think soberly about this whole matter, for God is the one who has dealt to each of us our own special capability to serve as He has seen fit.

On the other hand, God may have fitted us to serve and we are too slow to realize it. With His help and prayerful exercise, we should venture out to see how the Lord might use us. And as with natural talents, exercise brings development beyond expectations!

--Ivan Burgener
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« Reply #74 on: March 11, 2004, 02:46:28 PM »

IS CHRIST DIVIDED?


Working together is increasingly more difficult in a world that places the greatest emphasis on individual achievement. Those around us urge us to look out for "Number One" and to seek our own advancement, sometimes--most times--at the cost of others.

Being the light of the world and the salt of the earth, we need to realise that we were never meant to fit in with the crowd. A light must shine. Salt must retain its distinctive flavour. We cannot afford to blend in with our surroundings.

We stand out from those in this world because we have a higher purpose in life than to please ourselves. That purpose is "to please Him who has chosen us to be a soldier."

We would consider it strange for a soldier to wish to join the ranks of the enemy, to want to be like them in their dress, in their attitud-es, in their beliefs, and in their manner of life. Yet, it does not seem so unusual today to see Christians who have taken as their own the world's philosophies, priorities, and purposes.

Not that we consider those in bondage to sin as our enemies, for God loves them and so do we. Rather, it is their master whom we battle. They are merely Satan's instruments to do his bidding. Our goal in ministry is to rescue them from their bondage in the king-dom of darkness and bring them into the glorious light of God's Son, Jesus Christ. Yet, we must be careful not to become en-tangled in this world's affairs as we engage in daily spiritual warfare.

Satan recognises the power of God in us and will flee as we resist Him. This is certain. But this is not to say that he doesn't have any strategies of his own, for he is a master of evil schemes. His most often-used tactic is to bind Christians to the world's mindset--specifically to individualism.

In correcting the Christians of Corinth, Paul showed how their divisiveness was not appropriate for members of the Body of Christ. It was not that the men they followed were not worthy of their following, for they all had their part in the household of faith. The sin that brought the greatest portion of Paul's condemnation was the individualistic attitude that evidenced itself as the believers took sides, aligning themselves with the men God was using, and lifting up their voice in pride, saying, "I am of Paul," "I am of Apollos," "I am of Peter," and "I am of Christ." It was when self-centered pride took over that following God's chosen ministers became sin.

Is Christ divided? No. Nor is His Body. We joyfully sing the hymn, "We are not divided; all one body we: one in hope and doctrine, one in charity." And then we indulge the flesh by placing ourselves on a pedestal above the Pentecostals, the Baptists, the Methodists, and the Presbyterians. Are we better than they because we believe as we do? Has God granted us more grace, more blessings, a higher calling than they? How could He, and still remain as one who shows no favouritism? All in Christ's Body are equal in His sight--all seen as Christ Himself, dressed in His robes of righteousness.

But we in our human nature give in to the devil's strategy and divide the Church. We place our own agenda above God's. We seek our own ambitions rather than working for God's will to be done. How better by far to live out the unity of the Spirit in our day-to-day experience. When eternity is at the door, petty differences must be set aside for a greater cause. We are all members together of one another, and what God has joined together we dare not separate. O the joy of a united endeavour in the Lord--to serve Him with one heart, to praise Him with one voice, and to work with one goal. Together in Him. This is what being in the Body of Christ is all about.




--Jonathan Shriver
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