Find helpful biblical teachings concerning how to a life pleasing to God.
|Posted by [email protected] on July 1, 2014 at 11:55 AM||comments (0)|
And Jesus said to him, “ ‘If You can?’ All things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the boy’s father cried out and said, “I do believe; help my unbelief.” (Mark 9:23-24)
Whenever you're facing a stressful situation in your life, such as the loss of your job or a large unexpected expense, you might feel as though you've been punched in the stomach. As you're left to wonder what's going on, you find yourself calling out to God, telling Him that you love Him and trust that He's got it all under control.
As time keeps ticking away and nothing seems to change except for the bills piling up around you and shutoff notices being pegged to your door, you find that the faith that you boldly proclaimed just a few weeks ago, both in your heart and in your prayers, is now turning into pangs of doubt. Whenever this happens you may find yourself feeling guilty about the doubt that you're experiencing. You may even feel as though this means that you're failing in your faith walk.
The good news in all of this is that you're not failing at all. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that doubt is a very important part of your faith. While you may think that this really doesn't make any sense at all and that doubt is the opposite of faith, you should know that the two of them actually go hand in hand.
One of the best things about God is that those things that seem to make perfect sense to you and I are not what makes sense whenever you look at the principles of God's Word. If you take a look at the verse we are considering today, you will see that the Father had a son who was possessed by demons. The Father took his son to see Christ's disciples but they weren't able to cast out this demon. Nevertheless, the Father still had enough faith that he sought out those who would and could help him and his son.
Jesus told this Father that he'd need to have faith in order for the demon to be able to be cast out of his son. To this the Father then replied that he did have faith but he then went on to ask Christ to help him with any of his unbelief. So, while the Father believed that God was able to answer his prayers, he still had a little bit of doubt within him. Jesus never rebuked the Father for this statement. Instead, he went on to cast the demon out of his son.
There were also 3 Hebrew children who boldly told King Nebuchadnezzar that they'd never bow down to the golden idol. These children believed that God would deliver them but even if He didn't, they said that they still wouldn't bow. So, while they too had some doubt, they stood firm even though they could have been burnt up.
Faith doesn't mean that you have no doubt. Instead, it means that you believe in God and choose to move forward even with those doubts still there. God realizes that you're only human and that this means you're going to experience some doubt whenever you're faced with trials. However, to make your faith stronger you need to move forward, trusting in His Word, in spite of any doubts that you may have. By doing this your faith will become stronger and you'll see this when the next trial comes your way.
Living For Jesus Alone Ministries is dedicated in providing you with real biblical teachings concerning how to live a life pleasing to God. To find out more about having Faith in God, you can visit our site at http://www.living-for-jesus-alone.org/.
|Posted by [email protected] on July 1, 2014 at 11:15 AM||comments (0)|
“But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:15 - 16).
We are living in a day and age wherein what used to be expected as Christian behavior is now open to debate. This is something that never occurred in most of the 2,000 years since Calvary. There was no debate as to whether or not a Christian should live a pure, holy life. Instead, this was simply a given and assumed to be a basic truth that required absolutely no debate whatsoever.
In fact, if you were to go back and take a look at what all of the church's major denominations' requirements were, you'd probably be shocked to find that there were some really strict consequences to be faced by church members who lived lives that brought shame to the name of Christ Jesus. It was actually quite common to hear of members being barred from church membership for a certain period of time depending upon the nature of their offense. This is different from keeping them from attending church services. It simply meant that they had some of their membership's privileges suspended for a while.
Starting in the 1960s there was an air of rebellion that swept across America thanks to the hippie generation. Unfortunately, this began infecting the churches. At this time a teaching started developing that said that it was legalism to expect Christians to be held to certain behavior standards when it came to things like abstaining from alcohol, not smoking, being modest and not partaking of other such worldly vices.
Whenever you look up the real definition of the word legalism you'll find that it has to do with requiring works in order to be saved. There are a lot of religions that do teach this, including Islam. They teach that works are needed for salvation. Mormonism also believes that works are needed. In fact, whenever you talk to someone who belongs to the Mormon church they will tell you that both faith and works are needed in order for a person to be saved. This, in a nutshell, is legalism.
St. Peter plainly said that God commands us to be holy because He's holy. Does this mean that Peter was a legalist who wanted his views to be imposed upon other people too? Such a view doesn't make any sense whenever you consider that Peter walked side by side with Christ while he was on Earth.
God doesn't merely suggest that we be holy. Instead, He commands that we be holy. This holiness doesn't have anything to do with salvation either. The Bible plainly tells us that works (i.e. holy living) doesn't have anything to do with salvation. Of course, we are still called to live holy lives. Failure to do so means we don't love God, regardless of how much you may praise him because Jesus tells us that if we love Him, we're to keep His commandments. So, you can't love God but disobey His command to be holy.
Living For Jesus Alone Ministries is dedicated in providing you with real biblical teachings concerning how to live a life pleasing to God. To find out more about sanctification, you can visit our site at http://www.living-for-jesus-alone.org/.
|Posted by [email protected] on July 1, 2014 at 11:15 AM||comments (0)|
“Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.” (Acts 20:28).
Most Christian hymns are about the Christ's blood. As a Christian, you may have heard the classics like 'What can wash my sins away, nothing but the blood of Jesus', 'Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb', 'Would you be free from the burden of sin?' and 'There is power in the blood in the blood'. Actually, there is no salvation without the blood of Jesus Christ.
What the Bible Says About the Blood of Christ
According to the Bible, the atonement of sin can only come through bloodshed. However, a good number of hymnbooks and a few present Bibles choose to talk of the death of Christ instead of mentioning the blood. Note that despite the fact that blood plays an important role in the atonement of sin, not every kind of blood can work because the book of Exodus 34:7 says that even though God forgives sin and wickedness, the guilty still need to pay the penalty of their evil actions. A looking at the Old Testament shows that people offered animal sacrifices repeatedly because the sacrifices could not wipe out sin completely.
In addition, the Bible states that blood sustains the flesh and without blood, life cannot exist. Even a doctor can amaze you with facts about the numerous diseases linked in one way or the other to blood. The book of Acts 20:28 says that the blood Jesus shed at Calvary when He died on the cross came from God meaning that the blood did not simply come from a human being. Therefore, contrary to what groups like Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormons claim that Jesus was just a righteous person or a divine creation, in the real sense Jesus represented God Himself.
Significance of Acts 20:28
Since time immemorial to date, Acts 20:28 has always applied in many real life situations. Actually, the language of the British uses the term 'bloody' as an intense curse word. Secondly, in the dark times, people used to call Queen Mary 'bloody Mary' and many historians wrongly believed that the term referred to the blood on her hands from the many Christians she set on fire.
However, the term 'bloody Mary' came up because people cursed her in the blood of God as per Acts 20:28. Know that the powerful blood of Christ can free you from evil and at the same time save your life from the grasp of sin. Place your entire faith in Christ despite your sinful ways and actions because by doing so, you free yourself from sins. Remember, Jesus came to reconnect us with God and He did so by paying the ultimate price; dying on the cross.
Why We Need a Savior
We all need someone to save us from our sins because we go contrary to the wishes of an eternal God and only He can offer an acceptable payment for the sins. God descended to earth and lived like a human being in Jesus Christ thereby acting as a bridge between man and God. The fact that Jesus Christ came to earth as God manifested in human flesh guarantees humankind of salvation.
Living For Jesus Alone Ministries is dedicated in providing you with real biblical teachings concerning how to live a life pleasing to God. To find out more about the how you can have victory over sin, you can visit our site at http://www.living-for-jesus-alone.org/.
|Posted by [email protected]com on July 1, 2014 at 11:15 AM||comments (0)|
“Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).
The popular verse that says that God will make time for people, who come before Him, is quoted often at bible studies and sermons. It usually suggests that we can be bold while coming before God. Even though this is true, certain other truths that are in this verse are often overlooked, as we sometimes cannot see the overall picture like missing the forest and seeing only trees.
Consider the verse where we are asked to approach boldly. It tells about coming before grace's throne. However, what is this throne? The throne symbolizes authority, as it is the sitting place for a king. When it is said that we have to approach grace's throne, it refers to not only offering prayers to God, but also refers to God's noble quality of being the emperor who rules over all lords and the vast universe.
Say the governor of your state, or your country's president was calling you on the phone, and wanted to meet you. Even though there might be differences in political views between the powerful person and you, the office itself demands certain respect. For example, in the entire history of our country, only 45 people have held the president's office. Obviously, anybody would take the call and agree to meet the powerful person, at least based on this reason alone.
Now, let us see this from the other angle, where you are the one who has a desire to meet the president or the governor. I mean an individual visit, and not attending a group setting. If such a meeting were possible at all, it will obviously have to be at a certain time and date that suits the president or governor. Such an appointment will most likely be solely based on the president's availability, and you will have to make the required time from your schedule to attend the meeting. Once such a meeting has been scheduled, it will most probably have to last for certain duration, which obviously will not be long. Once this duration is over, the meeting would end, as the president has numerous other responsibilities.
However, God is much more wonderful and infinitely greater compared to any of the country's presidents, including the founding fathers. Consider being invited by the Lord of the whole universe to have a talk with Him, while He is seated at His throne. The most incredible thing is that we do not have to be inconvenienced at all and we do not have to miss work for attending this meeting, and even if we miss it, we can always try keeping the appointment at a time that suits us.
Actually, God is waiting for you, and He is always available any time of the day or night. Another, incredible thing is that when we pray and enter the room where God is seated on His throne, we do not have to worry about the time being up, as God does not have to rush to any other appointments. The reason for our boldness in approaching Him is that He has made time for all of us. When such is the situation, it is quite disheartening to see numerous Christians not taking advantage of this incredible open invitation and let God do the waiting.
Living For Jesus Alone Ministries is dedicated in providing you with real biblical teachings concerning how to live a life pleasing to God. To find out more about the the Power of prayer, you can visit our site at http://www.living-for-jesus-alone.org/.
|Posted by [email protected] on July 1, 2014 at 11:15 AM||comments (0)|
“And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:3-4).
When you are engaging in spiritual warfare, it is best to learn how to fight from the best general you could ever find. Yes, Jesus can ensure your victory, and He has provided in our Holy Scriptures a very effective battle plan.
You will come across many opinions and plan of actions when you want to learn about being successful in a given field. The same holds true, when you and the devil are waging war. Well, it is obvious anybody would want to get advice and receive instructions from the best leader of such warfare that the world has ever known. Jesus, who has defeated Satan and death, the greatest of all enemies, is perfectly defined as the Captain who can lead us to salvation.
It is recorded in Matthew 4, how Satan tempted Jesus when he had gone to the desert. This is very crucial, as God, manifesting in flesh and blood is none other than Jesus. If it were possible for the devil to make Jesus sin even once, then Jesus would not have been God's lamb without any blemish or spots. The chapter revealed events that could potentially bring about humankind's destruction.
Consider the events that transpired between Jesus and Satan. The devil while attempting to tempt three times, quoted scriptures for each, and was not trying to argue or reason with Jesus. Satan's acknowledgement of the scripture's authority is revealed by this incident. However, being an accomplished liar, he failed to mention certain words or added something that made it sound like it was coming from the bible, even though the bible does not mention it.
Before discussing the response of Jesus that he gave the devil, let us consider this point. It is declared in the bible that Word of God is Jesus. Revelation 19 and John's chapter makes this very clear. Therefore, whatever was spoken by Jesus can be truly referred to as scriptures, and that would be his privilege as being equal to the Word, if he so desired.
When Jesus was confronted by the twisted scriptures the devil was quoting, did Jesus attempt to create new scriptures immediately? No, in fact, he started quoting from the Old Testament, which is a scripture that was easily accessible to everybody in that period. He was doing this, as apart from being humankind's Savior, he also wanted to set an example about how godly life can be lived on this planet. Jesus knew that each one of us would be fighting with the devil, and did not want to use any weapon that was not accessible to us. The bible verses from the Old Testament were quoted by Jesus, thus revealing to us that the best way to respond to Satan would be to quote the correct scripture back at him.
Even though it is not wrong to use rational arguments for reasoning methods to live according to God's ways or articulating your beliefs in the truth of the bible, in the end, the most effective strategy for winning against the devil is utilizing God's Word. The final authority is the word of God and everybody has to submit to its decree one day or the other.
Living For Jesus Alone Ministries is dedicated in providing you with real biblical teachings concerning how to live a life pleasing to God. To find out more about the Word of God, you can visit our site at http://www.living-for-jesus-alone.org/.