What Really is The Object of Your Faith

The Cross feature

PREFACE:

AN ABBREVIATED FORMULA

The following will possibly help us to understand the great Plan of God to a greater degree.

It is as follows:

• THE CROSS OF CHRIST:

When we speak of the “Cross of Christ,” I would certainly hope the reader would understand that we are not speaking of a wooden beam.

We are speaking of what Jesus did there, i.e., “the benefits of the Cross.”

In the Atonement, our Lord addressed every single thing that man lost in the Fall and even addressed Satan and all powers of darkness (Col. 2:15Eph. 1:10).

There was no power in that wooden beam on which Jesus died! In fact, if the actual Cross on which Jesus died had been preserved all these centuries, and was now found, there would be no more power in that piece of wood than in any other piece of wood. As well, there was no power in the death of Christ per se.

In fact, the Scripture says, “He was crucified through weakness” (II Cor. 13:4).

This does not mean that He was personally weak, but that it was a contrived weakness. In other words, he could have called down any number of Angels if He had desired to have done so. So, how is the Message of the Cross the Power of God?

The Power is in the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8). The idea is, when Jesus died on the Cross, He atoned for all sin, past, present, and future, at least for all who will believe (Jn. 3:16). Now that the sin debt is forever paid, this made it possible for the Holy Spirit to come into the heart and life of the Believer, there to abide permanently (Jn. 14:16-17).

The Cross of Christ was a legal work. It satisfied a legal debt that man legally owed God, but could not pay. When the Law was satisfied, which it was by the Death of Christ, then the Holy Spirit could come into the heart and life of the Believer to reside permanently (I Cor. 3:16). As stated, He is the One Who has the Power. But it is the Cross of Christ that has made it all possible.

Unfortunately, most in the modern church don’t know this. In other words, they don’t know how the Holy Spirit works. In fact, this which we are bringing to you is so much a legal entity, that the Holy Spirit calls it a “Law.”

What is the object of my faith?
(for Salvation and Sanctification until we are translated to immortality)

(Romans 5:1-11) The Work of Jesus Christ : Has Brought Us Peace and Fellowship With God 

(Romans 5:12-21) Justification to All Men Comes : Through the Righteousness of One Man, Jesus Christ 

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READ | The Message of the Cross
READ | The Doctrine of the Cross
READ | What Is The Difference In The Cross For Salvation And The Cross For Sanctification?
WATCH SONLIFE TV
VISIT JIMMY SWAGGART MINISTRIES
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EDITORS COMMENTS:

Jimmy Swaggart isn’t worshiping a cross {a wooden Beam} he’s bringing back to the church the very work of Christ on the cross and pointing believers to once again put the total faith in what Jesus did there at the cross and to keep their faith there and place no trust or confidences in anything they think they could do as they will never find acceptance before God for dealing with Sin and the Sin Nature. Most of the church is caught up in the Law a works oriented mode of relationship with God at a minimum subconsciously and for many denominations openly as they preach messages which either deny sin and never address it or those who have only methods and humanistic processes to manage sin. There is only one thing that deals with sin and mans sin nature and its found in the work of Christ at the cross and our willingness to meet with God there and have transaction of propitiation (a great exchange my sin for his righteousness) by Faith absolute total reliance trust and confidence in what jesus has done.

The letter to the Galatians really is a letter to today’s church and most believers they start out with God in Faith and at some point cross over to a walk of Law placing their confidences in doing things to be right with god or to fix up sis committed after their initial encounter of salvation. Where God requires we start in Faith Stay in Faith and Finish in Faith and that Faith is absolute trust confidence and reliance of the work of the cross and all that it thereby achieved and makes available to us from God.Faith has a an OBJECT its has substance it is Christ and Him Crucified, it is the pillar we can lean on the rock we can build on, our sure foundation for life and godliness. 2 Peter 1:3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him (jesus) who called us to his own glory and excellence,

Jimmy Swaggart of the 70’s-80’s is no reflection of the Man of God he has been shaped into today at the age of 80 years old he’s being used by God to proclaim global the message of the cross with a clarity not heard within most of the walls of “churches” today I would suggest he’s a voice in the wilderness of christianity calling the church back to the foundations of the gospel and the work of christ and the baptism of the holy spirit. I would recommend the effort to actually set aside the time to watch the 1 hour panel programme called “message of the cross” daily broadcast on SBN network which is available in NZ or go to their website and watch daily on streaming TV
Also the shorter programme “study in the word” is good its another panel style programme
http://www.jsm.org/message-cross.html

What Is The Difference In The Cross For Salvation And The Cross For Sanctification?

The Cross feature

AS IT REGARDS THE CROSS — NONE!

But, as it regards the believing sinner coming to Christ and the Saint of God who already belongs to Christ, there is a great deal of difference.

The believing sinner coming to Christ knows absolutely nothing about the Lord or the Cross. He just knows he’s under conviction and, as someone has said, he feels like he’s hanging over Hell on a rotten stick. All he has to do is believe in Christ and call on the Lord, and he will be Saved.

Paul said:

v.9 “That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus (confess that Jesus is the Lord of Glory, and the Saviour of men, and that He died on the Cross that we might be Saved), and shall believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead (pertains to the Bodily Resurrection of Christ, as is obvious), you shall be Saved (it is that simple!)

BELIEVING UNTO RIGHTEOUSNESS

v.10For with the heart man believes unto Righteousness (presents the word ‘believing’ in a mode of ‘thinking,’ not of feeling; the ‘believing’ has to do with believing Christ, and that His Sacrifice of Himself Atoned for all sin); and with the mouth confession is made unto Salvation (when Faith comes forth from its silence to announce itself and proclaim the Glory and the Grace of the Lord, its voice ‘is confession’)v.11 “For the Scripture says (combining parts of Isaiah 28:16 with Isaiah 49:23), Whosoever believes on Him (proclaims the fact that Salvation is reachable by all) shall not be ashamed (in essence, says, ‘shall not be put to shame,’ but rather will receive what is promised).

NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE JEW AND THE GENTILE

v.12 “For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek (should read, ‘between the Jew and the Gentile’; all must come the same way, which is by and through Christ and what He did at the Cross on our behalf): for the same Lord over all is rich unto all who call upon Him (the riches of Grace will be given to all who truly call upon the Lord). v.13 For whosoever (anyone, anywhere) shall call upon the Name of the Lord shall be Saved (speaks of the sinner coming to Christ, but can refer to any Believer and with whatever need; the Cross is the means by which all of this is done)

Romans 10:9-13

JSM NKJV Expositor’s Study Bible 

THE SAINT OF GOD

As it regards the person who is already Saved who, in fact, has trusted the Lord for Salvation, which came by the Means of the Cross, he must come to understand that Sanctification comes from the same Source. Regrettably, it’s much more difficult for the Saint of God to place his faith exclusively in the Cross than the believing sinner who is initially coming for Salvation.
Why?

That’s a good question!

While most every Believer, including preachers, who is truly Saved and has at least a modicum of understanding as it regards the Cross of Christ respecting Salvation, the truth is, modern Christians, and again we are speaking of those who are truly Saved, have virtually no knowledge whatsoever as it regards the Cross of Christ respecting Sanctification.

For anyone to know the great Truths of the Word of God, those Truths must be taught by capable and anointed Preachers of the Gospel.

Regrettably, while the Cross of Christ is somewhat preached as it regards Salvation, it is preached not at all as it regards Sanctification; consequently, this modern generation of Believers simply do not know how to live for God.

The Scripture says, and concerning this very thing: “So then Faith comes by hearing (it is the publication of the Gospel which produces Faith in it), and hearing by the Word of God (Faith does not come simply by hearing just anything, but rather by hearing God’s Word, and believing that Word) (Rom. 10:17).

THE CHRISTIAN IS TO EXCLUSIVELY MAKE THE CROSS THE OBJECT OF HIS FAITH

That may seem simple and, in fact, is; however, to do so means that the Believer must lay aside every other object of faith, whatever it might be.

Please note the following:

The world in its rejection of God has from the dawn of time tried to manufacture another god, a god of its own making.

Believers, regrettably, have ever tried to manufacture another sacrifice, other than the Cross of Christ. But, let all hear and understand, the Sacrifice of Christ on the Cross dealt and deals with every single problem that faces the human race.

Please note the following very carefully:

Jesus Christ is the Source of all things that we receive from God
(Jn. 14:6).

The Cross of Christ is the Means by which those things are given to us
(Rom. 6:3-5).

Placing our Faith exclusively in the Cross of Christ provides the means by which we receive what is given
(I Cor. 1:17-18, 23; 2:2).

The Holy Spirit superintends all of this
(Eph. 2:13-18).

WHAT THE SAINT OF GOD NEEDS, THE HOLY SPIRIT ALONE CAN DEVELOP

Knowing they have been changed by the new birth and, with many, even baptized with the Holy Spirit, one of the most favorite Scriptures voiced by such Believers is, “I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me” (Phil. 4:13).

The Truth is, most Believers do not even really know what Paul was talking about as it regards that particular Verse.

He is saying that he can be abased or he can abound, whichever he is called upon to do, but only “through Christ Who strengthens me.”

In other words, if he has to go hungry, that he can do with the help of the Lord, etc.

As well, he can relish the bountiful Blessings that come his way, should the Lord desire such.

SIN IS THE PROBLEM

The church doesn’t want to admit that the real problem in our lives as Believers is sin.

One group claims that the best way to overcome sin is to never mention it because, if it is mentioned, they say, this will create a sin consciousness in the hearts and lives of Believers and cause them to sin. So, in their thinking, the way not to sin is just simply never mention the subject.

That’s somewhat strange when we realize that the Apostle Paul mentions sin some seventeen times in the Sixth Chapter of Romans alone. But, perhaps Paul didn’t have the great knowledge that some of these modern Believers have.

Others claim that once we are now Believers, sin is no longer a problem or even claim that it should not be mentioned because it may offend people.

Irrespective of the foolishness of some preachers, sin is the problem. To cope with this problem, the church comes up with one fad after the other.

One day it’s the Purpose Driven Life; the next day it’s the Government of Twelve; and, then the next day it’s the confession message, with the family curse following that.

THE CROSS IS THE ONLY ANSWER FOR SIN

There is only one answer for sin and that is the Cross of Christ.

Paul said:

“But this Man (this Priest, Christ Jesus), after He had offered One Sacrifice for sins forever (speaks of the Cross), sat down on the Right Hand of God (refers to the great contrast with the Priests under the Levitical system, who never sat down because their work was never completed; the Work of Christ was a ‘Finished Work,’ and needed no repetition)“From henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool. (These enemies are Satan and all the fallen Angels and demon spirits, plus all who follow Satan.) “For by one Offering He has perfected forever them who are Sanctified. (Everything one needs is found in the Cross [Gal. 6:14]).

THE WITNESS OF THE SPIRIT

Whereof the Holy Spirit also is a witness to us (a witness to the Cross): for after that He had said before (refers to the fact that the Holy Spirit has always witnessed to the veracity of the Finished Work of Christ)“This is the Covenant that I will make with them after those days (proclaims its distinctive feature as being the Sanctifying Work of the Holy Spirit Who would be caused to take up His permanent abode in the Believer, all made possible by the Cross), says the Lord, I will put My Laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them (the work of the New Covenant, which accompanies the Born-Again experience)“And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. (He has taken them all away, and did so by the Cross.) “Now where remission of these is (with all sins atoned, the argument is settled), there is no more offering for sin. (No more offering is necessary, for Christ paid it all) (Heb. 10:12-18).1)JSM NKJV Expositor’s Study Bible

As it regards this terrible problem of sin, the Believer, as stated, cannot bring about by his or her actions the victory that we need. It is impossible! Simply put, self cannot improve self!

To prove the point, let’s look at the Apostle Paul.

THE APOSTLE PAUL

The Ninth Chapter of Acts records the conversion of Paul. It is probably one of the most remarkable conversions ever recorded.

Jesus Christ appeared to him in such Glory that Paul was blinded. Nevertheless, he was gloriously Saved in that phenomenal experience.

Some three days later, Ananias, having been spoken to by the Lord, and according to directions from the Lord, went to where Paul was staying and prayed for him, “that he might receive his sight, and be filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 9:17). Immediately he began to “preach Christ in the Synagogues” (Acts 9:20).

The point is this:

Despite the phenomenal experience that Paul had regarding his conversion, and despite now being baptized with the Holy Spirit and preaching the Gospel, even then an Apostle, still, the record shows that he could not successfully live for the Lord. The Seventh Chapter of Romans bears this out, and graphically so!

This was before the Lord had revealed the meaning of the New Covenant which, in fact, was revealed to the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:12). But, the facts are, if the Apostle Paul couldn’t successfully live for the Lord as one should live before this great Revelation was given to him, how in the world do we think that we can do what he could not do?

Let us say it again:

It was to Paul that the Lord gave the meaning of the New Covenant, which, in effect, is the meaning of the Cross. As the Lord gave the Revelation of the New Covenant to Paul, the great Apostle then gave it to us in his Epistles.

Before we touch on the meaning of the New Covenant, let’s see exactly why the Believer within himself cannot be what he ought to be, no matter how hard he tries.

THE FALL

Any number of times, Paul alludes to this, but the Passage that I will now give will give us the reason for our inability, meaning that we must have the help of the Holy Spirit.

The great Apostle said:

v.10 “And if Christ be in you (He is in you through the Power and Person of the Spirit [Gal. 2:20]), the body is dead because of sin (means that the physical body has been rendered helpless because of the Fall; consequently, the Believer trying to overcome by willpower presents a fruitless task); but the Spirit is life because of Righteousness (only the Holy Spirit can make us what we ought to be, which means we cannot do it ourselves; once again, He performs all that He does within the confines of the Finished Work of Christ). v.11 “But if the Spirit (Holy Spirit) of Him (from God) Who raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you (and He definitely does), He Who raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies (give us power in our mortal bodies that we might live a Victorious life) by His Spirit Who dwells in you (we have the same Power in us, through the Spirit, that raised Christ from the dead, and is available to us only on the premise of the Cross and our Faith in that Sacrifice) (Rom. 8:10-11).

Let us say it again:

THE HOLY SPIRIT ALONE CAN MAKE US WHAT WE OUGHT TO BE

Self cannot improve self, and no matter how hard we try.

This means that all of the efforts, and I mean all, which ignore the Cross of Christ and Faith in that Finished Work, which then gives the Holy Spirit latitude to work within our hearts and lives, present a wasted effort.

It is the Cross of Christ, which gives the Holy Spirit the legal right to do all that He does.

Before the Cross, the Holy Spirit was greatly limited due to the fact that the blood of bulls and goats could not take away sins (Heb. 10:4).

What the Believer is facing, and I speak of that which is in the spirit world of darkness, is far beyond our capacity to cope. So, for the Believer to face these things with no more than willpower simply won’t work.

The Holy Spirit is God and, as such, and as should be obvious, He can do anything. But, most Christians don’t know how He works.

As a result, most Christians are trying to live this life without the aid and help of the Holy Spirit.

Don’t misunderstand; the Holy Spirit does not leave the Believer, irrespective as to what erroneous course he might take. But, at the same time, erroneous courses stop Him from doing what He Alone can do.

SPIRITUAL ADULTERY!

In the first four Verses of the Seventh Chapter of Romans, Paul addresses himself to spiritual adultery.

What do we mean by the term “spiritual adultery”?

Paul tells us that we as Believers are married to Christ. At least that’s the way that God looks at the situation.

Paul wrote:

“Wherefore, my Brethren, you also are become dead to the Law (the Law is not dead per se, but we are dead to the Law because we are dead to its effects; this means that we are not to try to live for God by means of ‘Law,’ whether the Law of Moses, or religious laws made up by other men or of ourselves; we are to be dead to all religious law) by the Body of Christ (this refers to the Crucifixion of Christ, which satisfied the demands of the broken Law we could not satisfy; but Christ did it for us; having fulfilled the Mosaic Law in every respect, the Christian is not obligated to religious law in any fashion, only to Christ and what He did at the Cross); that you should be married to another (speaking of Christ), even to Him Who is raised from the dead (we are raised with Him in Newness of Life, and we should ever understand that Christ has met, does meet, and shall meet our every need; we look to Him exclusively, referring to what He did for us at the Cross), that we should bring forth fruit unto God (proper fruit can only be brought forth by the Believer constantly looking to the Cross; in fact, Christ must never be separated from the Work of the Cross; to do so is to produce ‘another Jesus’) (Rom. 7:4).

ONE HUSBAND, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST

The Apostle said:

“Would to God you could bear with me a little in my folly: and indeed bear with me. (In effect, the Apostle is saying, ‘indulge me.’) “For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy (refers to the ‘jealousy of God’ [Ex. 20:5; 34:14; Nah. 1:2]): for I have espoused you to one husband (not jealous of the Corinthians’ affection for himself, but of their affection for Christ), that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. (They must not commit spiritual adultery, which refers to trusting in things other than Christ and the Cross) (II Cor. 11:1-2).

Let us say it again, if the Believer places his faith and trust in anything except Christ and the Cross, no matter how religious or spiritual the other things may be, such a Believer is being unfaithful to Christ.

That’s what we mean by “spiritual adultery.”

I should think it would be obvious that the Holy Spirit cannot rightly work in such circumstances.

Yet, “spiritual adultery” is the position and condition of most modern Believers.

AN ABBREVIATED FORMULA

The following will possibly help us to understand the great Plan of God to a greater degree.

It is as follows:

• THE CROSS OF CHRIST:

When we speak of the “Cross of Christ,” I would certainly hope the reader would understand that we are not speaking of a wooden beam.

We are speaking of what Jesus did there, i.e., “the benefits of the Cross.”

In the Atonement, our Lord addressed every single thing that man lost in the Fall and even addressed Satan and all powers of darkness (Col. 2:15; Eph. 1:10).

Christ is the Source of all things, even as we have stated, and the Cross is the Means.

• OUR FAITH:

To have the benefits of all that Christ accomplished at the Cross, it requires only Faith on our part; however, without fail, it must be Faith exclusively in the Cross of Christ.

To say it another way, the Cross of Christ must be the Object of our Faith.

That’s all that God requires of us (Rom. 5:1-2; Eph. 2:8-10; Rom. 4:3, 14; 6:11).

As well, our Faith must not be divided between the Cross of Christ and other things. It must be the Cross of Christ exclusively. In fact, the only kind of faith that God will recognize is Faith, which is rested in His Son, our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who must always be linked to the Atonement — Who He was and is, and what He did, which refers to the Cross.

Everyone has faith, but it’s not faith that God will recognize.

The Cross is the Means by which we receive all things from the Lord.

• THE HOLY SPIRIT:

Once our Faith is properly placed in the Cross, and maintained in the Cross, the Holy Spirit, Who works exclusively within the parameters of the Finished Work of Christ, will then go to work on our behalf. And, to be sure, considering that the Holy Spirit is God, there is nothing that He cannot do; however, for Him to do what He Alone can do, we must, and without fail, have our Faith anchored squarely in the Cross of Christ (Rom. 8:1-2, 10-11).

Jan 2014 | by Jimmy Swaggart | (This message was derived from the book, “Brother Swaggart, Here Is My Question About The Cross”.)

References   [ + ]

The Doctrine of the Cross

The Cross feature

THE DOCTRINE OF THE CROSS

The material that we hope to bring you in this Chapter is the most important that you as a Believer will ever know or have presented to you. I realize that’s quite a statement, but I know it to be true. I am not speaking of my ability or the lack thereof as it regards the subject matter, but rather the subject matter itself. Unless the Believer understands this which the Apostle Paul gave to us, even as the Lord gave it to him (Gal. 1:12), while he can be a Christian, and can even make Heaven his home, the fact is, he cannot live a victorious, overcoming, Christian life.

Considering that our Lord paid an awful price for our Redemption, I should think it would be obvious that He wants us to have all that is possible to have at this time. But unfortunately, most Christians are living far beneath the Spiritual Privileges they could have.

I do not say this from an academic perspective, but rather from experience, even bitter experience. If by the Grace of God, we can impart Truth to you that will enable you to live a victorious life; your Victory will be my reward.

THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST

Paul said:

“For Christ sent me not to baptize (presents to us a Cardinal Truth), but to preach the Gospel (the manner in which one may be Saved from sin): not with wisdom of words (intellectualism is not the Gospel), lest the Cross of Christ should be made of none effect. (This tells us in no uncertain terms that the Cross of Christ must always be the emphasis of the Message) (I Cor. 1:17).

In this one Verse, the Apostle tells us what the Gospel of Jesus Christ actually is. It is the Message of the Cross.

This means, if the preacher is not preaching the Cross, then whatever it is he is preaching, in its own way it may be good, but it’s not the Gospel, and it will not help anyone. In fact, the only Message that will save, help, heal, bless, instruct, lead, guide, empower, is the Message of the Cross. In our next Chapter we will address the means by which all of this comes about.

Unfortunately, the modern Church is little preaching the Cross anymore. As a result, whatever is being preached is not the Gospel, at least for the most part, and will do precious little, if any, good.

The message that is being preached presently is one of “morality” and “ethics.” Now those two words sound very good to most, because most everyone wants better morals, and most everyone wants that which is ethical. But to treat this subject in the way that it is presently being treated, one is really only treating the symptoms. Man’s real problem is not a lack of ethics or immorality; even those things are the end results of his state. Man’s problem is sin, and there is only one answer for sin, and that is the Cross of Christ.

But modern man, at least according to most preachers, is not really a sinner, he’s just not properly motivated, or else he really doesn’t know how wonderful and good he actually is. So he needs a preacher to tell him these things, which will solve his problems; however, the sad truth is, no problems are solved at all by this means.

The Gospel of Jesus Christ, and we are speaking of the Message of the Cross, is not a Gospel of diplomacy. It is rather an ultimatum! We do the thing God’s Way or else it’s not done at all.

AN ILLUSTRATION

Some time back I saw a cartoon that explains the modern Ministry to the proverbial “T.” Two men were standing and looking at a huge machine that was working away. Smoke was coming out of its stacks, and pulleys were turning and wheels were churning. It was one great beehive of motion. One man asked the other one, “What does it do?” The one to whom the question was asked, looked somewhat blank and answered, “Do?” The truth is the machine did not do anything. It did not manufacture anything, it did not repair anything, it was just a machine of motion. That’s basically the same thing the modern church is doing. It’s just one vast beehive of motion, with nothing being done for the Lord. In other words, no souls are Saved, no Believers are baptized with the Holy Spirit, no lives are changed, no sick are healed, no bondages broken, etc. — despite all the motion! Let us say it again, if the preacher is not preaching the Cross, he’s not preaching the Gospel, and if he’s not preaching the Gospel, whatever it is he is preaching, is of no consequence!

THE MESSAGE OF THE CROSS IS THE POWER OF GOD

Paul said:

“For the preaching (Word) of the Cross is to them who perish foolishness (Spiritual things cannot be discerned by unredeemed people, but that doesn’t matter; the Cross must be preached just the same, even as we shall see); but unto us who are Saved it is the Power of God. (The Cross is the Power of God simply because it was there that the total sin debt was paid, giving the Holy Spirit, in Whom the Power resides, latitude to work mightily within our lives) (I Cor. 1:18).

First of all, the word translated “preaching,” in the above Scripture, in the Greek is “logos.” It either means “word” or “message,” and should have been translated that way.

It would then read, For the Message of the Cross. . . .

How is the Message of the Cross the Power of God?

There was no power in that wooden beam on which Jesus died! In fact, if the actual Cross on which Jesus died had been preserved all these centuries, and was now found, there would be no more power in that piece of wood than in any other piece of wood. As well, there was no power in the death of Christ per se.

In fact, the Scripture says, He was crucified through weakness (II Cor. 13:4).

This does not mean that He was personally weak, but that it was a contrived weakness. In other words, he could have called down any number of Angels if He had desired to have done so. So, how is the Message of the Cross the Power of God?

The Power is in the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8). The idea is, when Jesus died on the Cross, He atoned for all sin, past, present, and future, at least for all who will believe (Jn. 3:16). Now that the sin debt is forever paid, this made it possible for the Holy Spirit to come into the heart and life of the Believer, there to abide permanently (Jn. 14:16-17).

The Cross of Christ was a legal work. It satisfied a legal debt that man legally owed God, but could not pay. When the Law was satisfied, which it was by the Death of Christ, then the Holy Spirit could come into the heart and life of the Believer to reside permanently (I Cor. 3:16). As stated, He is the One Who has the Power. But it is the Cross of Christ that has made it all possible.

Unfortunately, most in the modern church don’t know this. In other words, they don’t know how the Holy Spirit works. In fact, this which we are bringing to you is so much a legal entity, that the Holy Spirit calls it a “Law.”

THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS

He said:

And I quote from THE EXPOSITOR’S STUDY BIBLE:

“For the Law (that which we are about to give is a Law of God, devised by the Godhead in eternity past [I Pet. 1:18-20]; this Law, in fact, is ‘God’s Prescribed Order of Victory’) of the Spirit (Holy Spirit, i.e., ‘the way the Spirit works’) of Life (all life comes from Christ, but through the Holy Spirit [Jn. 16:13-14]) in Christ Jesus (any time Paul uses this term or one of its derivatives, he is, without fail, referring to what Christ did at the Cross, which makes this ‘life’ possible) has made me free (given me total Victory) from the Law of Sin and Death (these are the two most powerful Laws in the Universe; the ‘Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus’ alone is stronger than the ‘Law of Sin and Death’; this means that if the Believer attempts to live for God by any manner other than Faith in Christ and the Cross, he is doomed to failure) (Rom. 8:2).

To show how close the Sacrifice of Christ and the Holy Spirit are, please note carefully the following:

THE SLAIN LAMB AND THE SPIRIT OF GOD

The following is the Scripture and the notes concerning this subject, taken directly from THE EXPOSITOR’S STUDY BIBLE.

John the Beloved wrote:

“And one of the Elders said unto me, Weep not (states that man’s dilemma has been solved): behold, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the Book, and to loose the Seven Seals thereof (presents Jesus Christ).

“And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the Throne and of the four Beasts, and in the midst of the Elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain (the Crucifixion of Christ is represented here by the word ‘Lamb,’ which refers to the fact that it was the Cross which Redeemed mankind; the slain Lamb Alone has Redeemed all things), having seven horns (horns denote dominion, and ‘seven’ denotes total dominion; all of this was done for you and me, meaning that we can have total dominion over the powers of darkness, and in every capacity; so there is no excuse for a lack of victory) and seven eyes (denotes total, perfect, pure, and complete illumination of all things spiritual, which is again made possible for you and me by the Cross; if the Believer makes the Cross the Object of his Faith, he will never be drawn away by false doctrine), which are the Seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the Earth (signifying that the Holy Spirit, in all His Perfection and universality, functions entirely within the parameters of the Finished Work of Christ; in other words, it is required that we ever make the Cross the Object of our Faith, which gives the Holy Spirit latitude, and guarantees the ‘dominion,’ and the ‘illumination’ [Isa. 11:2; Rom. 8:2]).

“And He (the Lord Jesus Christ) came and took the Book out of the Right Hand of Him (God the Father) Who sat upon the Throne. (All of Heaven stands in awe as the Lamb steps forward to take the Book)(Rev. 5:5-7).

THE MANNER IN WHICH THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS

Most so-called Christians ignore the Holy Spirit altogether. Even Pentecostals and Charismatics, at least for the most part, have little idea as to how the Holy Spirit Works. They think that whatever He does is automatic. Consider the following:

If the Holy Spirit, without our cooperation, automatically did whatever it is that needed to be done, this would mean that there would never again be another failure on the part of the Believer, never again a sin committed, etc. But we all know that’s not the case, don’t we?!

The truth is, if the Believer doesn’t place his faith exclusively in Christ and the Cross, and maintain it exclusively in Christ and the Cross, the Holy Spirit will be greatly limited as to what He can do in us, by us, or for us. As we have stated, He Works strictly within the parameters of the Finished Work, i.e., “the Cross of Christ,” which demands that our Faith be exclusively in the Cross of Christ. The reason is simple, that’s where the price was paid, and the Victory was forever won (Rom. 6:1-14; I Cor. 2:2; Gal., Chpt. 5; 6:14; Eph. 2:13-18; Col. 2:14-15).

The Holy Spirit doesn’t require much of us, but He does require one thing, and without reservation. Our Faith must exclusively be in Christ and the Cross, understanding that this is God’s Prescribed Order of Victory.

THE CROSS OF CHRIST IS THE FOUNDATION OF ALL DOCTRINE

The heading means that every doctrine in the Bible must be built on the Foundation of the Cross, or else in some way it will be spurious. An erroneous understanding of the Cross of Christ, or ignoring the Cross of Christ, or denying the Cross of Christ, presents the seedbed of all false doctrine. This is where we go astray, that is if we do not have a correct interpretation of the Cross of Christ. If our faith is in something other than the Cross of Christ, whatever is produced will be false.

As we have stated, the Cross of Christ is the Foundation on which all doctrine must be constructed.

How do we know that?

Peter said:

“Forasmuch as you know that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold (presents the fact that the most precious commodities [silver and gold] could not redeem fallen man), from your vain conversation (vain lifestyle) received by tradition from your fathers (speaks of original sin that is passed on from father to child at conception);

“But with the Precious Blood of Christ (presents the payment, which proclaims the poured out Life of Christ on behalf of sinners), as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot (speaks of the lambs offered as substitutes in the Old Jewish economy; the Death of Christ was not an execution or assassination, but rather a Sacrifice; the Offering of Himself presented a Perfect Sacrifice, for He was Perfect in every respect [Ex. 12:5]):

“Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world (refers to the fact that God, in His Omniscience, knew He would create man, man would Fall, and man would be redeemed by Christ going to the Cross; this was all done before the Universe was created; this means the Cross of Christ is the Foundation Doctrine of all Doctrine, referring to the fact that all Doctrine must be built upon that Foundation, or else it is specious), but was manifest in these last times for you (refers to the invisible God Who, in the Person of the Son, was made visible to human eyesight by assuming a human body and human limitations) (I Pet. 1:18-20).

The Cross of Christ is the Foundation of all doctrine, meaning that all doctrine must be built on this Foundation, simply because it was the first Doctrine formulated in the Mind of the Godhead, even before man was created, or even the world was created.

This means many things, of which the following two are a beginning:

1. The Cross of Christ is the dividing line between the Church and the Apostate Church. In fact, it has always been that way. We find the first account given to us in the Fourth Chapter of Genesis, as it regards Cain and Abel. Because we are nearing the end, however, I believe this dividing line of the Cross is more prominent than ever.

2. The Cross of Christ is the only answer for sin. There is no other, because there need be no other.

The Message is ageless.

It will never have to be amended in any form, simply because it is perfect (Heb. 13:20).

THE CROSS OF CHRIST IS THE STORY OF THE BIBLE

One might say that “Jesus Christ and Him Crucified,” is the Story of the Word of God, even as the Word of God is the Story of “Jesus Christ and Him Crucified.”

The very first example of the Cross is found immediately after the Fall.

At that time, the Scripture says as it regards Adam and Eve:

“And the eyes of them both were opened (refers to the consciousness of guilt as a result of their sin), and they knew that they were naked (refers to the fact that they had lost the enswathing light of purity, which previously had clothed their bodies); and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons (sinners clothe themselves with morality, sacraments, and religious ceremonies; they are as worthless as Adam’s apron of fig leaves) (Gen. 3:7).

Concerning their nakedness, the Scripture says:

“Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them (in the making of coats of skins, God, in effect, was telling Adam and Eve that their fig leaves were insufficient; as well, He was teaching them that without the shedding of blood, which pertained to the animals that gave their lives, which were Types of Christ, is no remission of sin; in this first sacrifice was laid the foundation of the entirety of the Plan of God as it regards Redemption; also, it must be noticed that it is the ‘LORD God’ Who furnished these coats, and not man himself; this tells us that Salvation is altogether of God and not at all of man; the Life of Christ given on the Cross, and given as our Substitute, provides the only covering for sin; everything else must be rejected)” (Gen. 3:21).

The Fourth Chapter of Genesis proclaims in vivid detail the Substitute. The Lord had related to the First Family even though fallen, that they could have forgiveness of sin and fellowship with Him, and He gave the manner in which this could be done.

They were to build an Altar, which was a Type of the Cross, and they were to kill a lamb, which was a Type of Christ, burn its little body on the Altar, a Type of the Judgment of God, which came upon our Lord, instead of upon us, with the blood poured out at the base of the Altar. The blood signified Him giving His Life. Hence, the principle of Redemption is spelled out, in the offering up of the slain lamb. Thus was the Sacrificial System introduced on the first page of human history, and continued through the centuries. When the Law of Moses was given, the Sacrificial System was the very heart of the Law. In fact, had it not been for the Sacrificial System, Israel would have been doomed, just as man is doomed now unless he takes hold of the Christ of the Cross.

All of this was a stopgap measure until Jesus would come, Who would be the literal Sacrifice.

His very purpose of coming to this Earth, of God becoming Man, the Man Christ Jesus, was to be a Sacrifice.

The Apostle John outlines it perfectly in the great Gospel that bears his name.

THE INCARNATION

He said:

“In the beginning (does not infer that Christ as God had a beginning, because as God He had no beginning, but rather refers to the time of Creation [Gen. 1:1]) was the Word (the Holy Spirit through John describes Jesus as ‘the Eternal Logos’), and the Word was with God (‘was in relationship with God,’ and expresses the idea of the Trinity), and the Word was God (meaning that He did not cease to be God during the Incarnation; He ‘was’ and ‘is’ God from eternity past to eternity future).

“The same was in the beginning with God (this very Person was in eternity with God; there’s only one God, but manifested in Three Persons — God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit).

“All things were made by Him (all things came into being through Him; it refers to every item of Creation one by one, rather than all things regarded in totality); and without Him was not any thing made that was made (nothing, not even one single thing, was made independently of His cooperation and volition).

“In Him was Life (presents Jesus, the Eternal Logos, as the first cause); and the Life was the Light of men (He Alone is the Life Source of Light; if one doesn’t know Christ, one is in darkness).

“And the Light shines in darkness (speaks of the Incarnation of Christ, and His coming into this world; His ‘Light,’ because it is derived from His Life, drives out ‘darkness’); and the darkness comprehended it not (should have been translated, ‘apprehended it not’; it means that Satan, even though he tried with all his might, could not stop ‘the Light’; today it shines all over the world, and one day soon, there will be nothing left but that ‘Light’)(Jn. 1:1-5).

JOHN THE BELOVED

Then John the Beloved said:

“And the Word was made flesh (refers to the Incarnation, ‘God becoming man’), and dwelt among us (refers to Jesus, although Perfect, not holding Himself aloft from all others, but rather lived as all men, even a peasant), (and we beheld His Glory, the Glory as of the Only Begotten of the Father,) (speaks of His Deity, although hidden from the eyes of the merely curious; while Christ laid aside the expression of His Deity, He never lost the possession of His Deity) full of Grace and Truth (as ‘flesh,’ proclaimed His Humanity, ‘Grace and Truth’ His Deity) (Jn. 1:14).

 

And now John gives the reason for the Word being made flesh. He records the statement about Christ given by John the Baptist.

He said:

“The next day (refers to the day after John had been questioned by the emissaries from the Sanhedrin) John sees Jesus coming unto him (is, no doubt, after the baptism of Jesus, and the temptation in the wilderness), and said, Behold the Lamb of God (proclaims Jesus as the Sacrifice for sin, in fact, the Sin-Offering, Whom all the multiple millions of offered lambs had represented), which takes away the sin of the world (animal blood could only cover sin, it could not take it away; but Jesus offering Himself as the Perfect Sacrifice took away the sin of the world; He not only cleansed acts of sin but, as well, addressed the root cause [Col. 2:14-15]) (Jn. 1:29).

GOD’S PRESCRIBED ORDER OF VICTORY

When we say “victory” we are speaking of Victory in every capacity, be it spiritual, financial, domestically, physical, etc. God’s Prescribed Order for this Victory is “the Cross of Christ.”

Of course, the primary victory of which the Bible addresses itself is Victory over sin. That properly handled and addressed, everything else will fall into place.

Paul said:

“But this Man (this Priest, Christ Jesus), after He had offered One Sacrifice for sins forever (speaks of the Cross), sat down on the Right Hand of God (refers to the great contrast with the Priests under the Levitical system, who never sat down because their work was never completed; the Work of Christ was a ‘Finished Work,’ and needed no repetition);

“From henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool. (These enemies are Satan and all the fallen Angels and demon spirits, plus all who follow Satan.)

“For by one Offering He has perfected forever them who are Sanctified. (Everything one needs is found in the Cross [Gal. 6:14]) (Heb. 10:12-14).

The first five Verses of Romans, Chapter 6 proclaim to us God’s Prescribed Order. Of course, the entirety of the Sixth Chapter of Romans opens up to us this great truth, and in every capacity; however, the first five Verses tell us what the Prescribed Order actually is.

THE PROBLEM IS SIN

More particularly as it regards the Believer, the problem is the sin nature.

The sin nature is that which happened to Adam and Eve at the Fall, and which passed down to all thereafter.

It means that their very nature became one of sin, transgression, iniquity, disobedience, etc.

It is the cause of all the difficulties, war, crime, man’s inhumanity to man, that’s in the world presently and, in fact, ever has been the cause.

Every unbeliever is ruled by the sin nature 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

When the believing sinner comes to Christ, at that moment, the sin nature, although not removed, is made dormant.

But unfortunately, every single believing sinner, after coming to Christ, fails the Lord in some way.

It happens to every one of us.

Now, sin is abhorrent to the Believer.

Now knowing God’s Prescribed Order of Victory, the Believer sets about to try not to commit the same sin again.

Every time, he will place his Faith in something other than the Cross.

While many other things may be very helpful in their own right, and very legitimate, still, the answer for sin, and the only answer, is the Cross of Christ. But inevitably, the flesh gravitates toward works, i.e., “law.”

Now, the Believer doesn’t understand that he is placing his faith in that which God cannot bless, and it will be some time before he fully understands this.

Regrettably, and because of a lack of teaching on this all-important subject, most Believers never come to a place of proper understanding; therefore, they remain in the Seventh Chapter of Romans all of their spiritual existence.

That’s the reason the teaching of the Cross as it regards both Salvation and Sanctification is so very, very important.

In fact, it is the single most important body of understanding that the Believer could have.

The tragedy is, irrespective of its great significance, most Christians, even preachers, have no idea as to the part the Cross plays as it regards our Sanctification, i.e., “How we live for God on a daily basis.”

The only way to have victory over the sin nature, and we speak of perpetual Victory, even on a daily basis, is for the Believer to place his faith exclusively in Christ and the Cross, and maintain his Faith in Christ and the Cross.

Then and only then can the Holy Spirit work within our lives, thereby bringing about the Fruit of the Spirit and, thereby, helping us to be what we ought to be in Christ.

That is God’s Prescribed Order.

Concerning this:

THE SIN NATURE

Paul said:

“What shall we say then? (This is meant to direct attention to Rom. 5:20.) Shall we continue in sin, that Grace may abound? (Just because Grace is greater than sin doesn’t mean that the Believer has a license to sin.)

“God forbid (presents Paul’s answer to the question, ‘Away with the thought, let not such a thing occur’). How shall we, who are dead to sin (dead to the sin nature), live any longer therein? (This portrays what the Believer is now in Christ) (Rom. 6:1-2).

THE CROSS OF CHRIST

Now the Apostle tells us the answer to the sin nature and, in fact, the only answer.

He said:

“Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ (plainly says that this Baptism is into Christ and not water [I Cor. 1:17; 12:13; Gal. 3:27; Eph. 4:5; Col. 2:11-13]) were baptized into His Death? (When Christ died on the Cross, in the Mind of God, we died with Him; in other words, He became our Substitute, and our identification with Him in His Death gives us all the benefits for which He died; the idea is that He did it all for us!)

“Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death (not only did we die with Him, but we were buried with Him as well, which means that all the sin and transgression of the past were buried; when they put Him in the Tomb, they put all of our sins into that Tomb as well): that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the Glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in Newness of Life (we died with Him, we were buried with Him, and His Resurrection was our Resurrection to a ‘Newness of Life’).

“For if we have been planted together (with Christ) in the likeness of His Death (Paul proclaims the Cross as the instrument through which all Blessings come; consequently, the Cross must ever be the Object of our Faith, which gives the Holy Spirit latitude to work within our lives), we shall be also in the likeness of His Resurrection (we can have the ‘likeness of His Resurrection,’ i.e., ‘live this Resurrection Life,’ only as long as we understand the ‘likeness of His Death,’ which refers to the Cross as the means by which all of this is done)” (Rom. 6:3-5).

Perhaps the following formula, as simple as it is, will help us to understand this all-important subject to a greater degree.

THE WAY OF THE SPIRIT

• FOCUS:
The Lord Jesus Christ

(Jn. 14:6).
OBJECT OF FAITH:
The Cross of Christ

(Rom. 6:1-14).
POWER SOURCE:
The Holy Spirit

(Rom. 8:1-2, 11).
RESULTS:
Victory

(Rom. 6:14).

MAN’S WAY

• FOCUS:
Works.

OBJECT OF FAITH:
Performance.

POWER SOURCE:
Self.

RESULTS:
Defeat!

A guide to help you understand they way of the spirit concerning Salvation and Sanctification.sbn-01aA

 

Now let’s use the same formula, but the manner in which it is being used by most Believers.sbn-02aA

Regrettably and sadly, the latter formula is the manner in which most Believers are attempting to live this life for the Lord. They aren’t doing it God’s Way, but rather man’s way, with the latter always leading to continued failure.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO PREACH THE CROSS?

Paul said:

“For the preaching (Word) of the Cross is to them who perish foolishness (Spiritual things cannot be discerned by unredeemed people, but that doesn’t matter; the Cross must be preached just the same, even as we shall see); but unto us who are Saved it is the Power of God. (The Cross is the Power of God simply because it was there that the total sin debt was paid, giving the Holy Spirit, in Whom the Power resides, latitude to work mightily within our lives) (I Cor. 1:18).

Most preachers, at least those who claim to preach the Bible, preach the Cross of Christ for Salvation, and rightly so! However, most preachers have no idea whatsoever as to the part the Cross plays in our life and living as it regards Sanctification. That’s the reason that the church is constantly putting forth one scheme, one fad after the other, trying to address the problem of sin, in other words, failure in the lives of Believers.

There is only one answer, and that is the Cross of Christ.

If the Preacher is truly preaching the Cross, this means that he understands that the Cross of Christ pertains not only to our Salvation, where all sin was atoned, but, as well, to our daily life and living, in other words, our Sanctification.

And how does the Cross apply to our Sanctification?

When the Believing sinner comes to Christ, the truth is, he knows nothing about the Lord, and he certainly knows nothing about the Cross. He just simply calls on the Name of the Lord, means it in his heart, and he is Saved (Rom. 10:9-10, 13).

But after the believing sinner comes to Christ, is made a new creation, with old things passing away, and all things becoming new, in other words, he is truly Born-Again, he is to understand, that as his Salvation is in the Cross, his Sanctification is in the Cross also. This means that we are to place our Faith unreservedly in the Cross of Christ, in fact, ever making the Cross the Object of our Faith. This is to be done constantly, ever understanding, that all that we need, is found in what Jesus did at the Cross.

And please understand, when we speak of the Cross, we aren’t speaking of a wooden beam, but more particularly, the benefits of what Jesus did for us there. These benefits, upon Faith, will continue to come to us forever and forever.

The idea is this:

THE HOLY SPIRIT AND THE BELIEVER

What we need to be in Christ, we cannot bring it about by our own machinations, strength, or power. This is what Jesus was talking about when He said, that if we were to come after Him, that we had to “deny ourselves” (Lk. 9:23).

To be sure, He wasn’t speaking of asceticism, which refers to denying ourselves all things that were comfortable or pleasurable, but rather, denying our own ability, talent, education, motivation, strength, power, in other words, everything that is indicative of the human being.

No matter how strong we are, no matter how much education we have, what we need to be in Christ, we cannot by our own machinations bring it about ourselves. And this is where the great problem begins. Now that we are Saved and even Spirit-filled, somehow, we think that whatever it takes we can do it.

We can’t!

It is the Holy Spirit Alone, Who lives within our hearts and lives, and does so permanently, Who can bring about that which we need to have and need to be. And He works exclusively within the parameters of the Finished Work of Christ.

In other words, it is the Cross of Christ that has given the Holy Spirit the latitude, i.e., “the legal right,” to carry forth His Work within our lives. It is the Cross that has made it all possible.

In fact the Scripture says: The Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus, has made me free from the Law of Sin and Death (Rom. 8:2).

THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS

Because this is so important, please allow me again to quote this Scripture from THE EXPOSITOR’S STUDY BIBLE:

“For the Law (that which we are about to give is a Law of God, devised by the Godhead in eternity past [I Pet. 1:18-20]; this Law, in fact, is ‘God’s Prescribed Order of Victory’) of the Spirit (Holy Spirit, i.e., ‘the way the Spirit works’) of Life (all life comes from Christ, but through the Holy Spirit [Jn. 16:13-14]) in Christ Jesus (any time Paul uses this term or one of its derivatives, he is, without fail, referring to what Christ did at the Cross, which makes this ‘life’ possible) has made me free (given me total Victory) from the Law of Sin and Death (these are the two most powerful Laws in the Universe; the ‘Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus’ alone is stronger than the ‘Law of Sin and Death’; this means that if the Believer attempts to live for God by any manner other than Faith in Christ and the Cross, he is doomed to failure)(Rom. 8:2).

While the Bible, as stated, does not teach sinless perfection, it most definitely does teach that “sin (i.e., the sin nature) is not to have dominion over us” (Rom. 6:14).

The only way this can be achieved, the only way it can be brought about, which is God’s Way, is that we ever make the Cross of Christ the Object of our Faith. That and that alone, is the way of the Spirit.

http://www.francesandfriends.com/js/the-doctrine-of-the-cross.html

The Message of the Cross

The Cross feature

The only solution for sin, the only answer to sin, is the Cross of Christ

Public Humiliation, especially on a worldwide basis, is a trauma that many people never get over. There is no way to describe it. When one has failed, despite doing everything that one knows to do not to fail, one is left with confusion. Since the Lord is never the author of confusion, the situation quickly becomes unbearable.

In such a situation, regrettably and sadly, everyone else knows why you have failed, and they are quick to voice their opinion. But the truth is, they do not know.

I came to find out in all of this, that most of the modern church has little idea how to live for God. Oh yes, one can definitely be Saved without knowing how to properly live for the Lord, but one most definitely cannot walk in victory without knowing how to live for God. If one does not understand the message of the Cross, even as it was given to the Apostle Paul, then simply put, such a believer does not know how to live for God.

The revelation of the message of the cross

After seeking the Lord day and night, so often with tears, for a period of some six years, suddenly and without warning, the Lord began to open up to me that for which I had so long sought. I honestly don’t remember the day or the month, but the year was 1997. I had spent some six years in concentrated prayer, seeking the Lord, imploring Him for guidance and direction.

Let me make something clear: The daily vigil of prayer purchased me nothing with God. As stated, it was for the purpose of my getting to know Him in a more personal way. In other words, He was preparing me for this Revelation of the Cross which He would give to me. For years I had known what He could do, but now I was learning, on a personal basis, Who He was, a description, incidentally, which can never be exhausted.

Very early, probably about 6 a.m., on the morning in question, I was in my office working on the Romans Commentary. In fact, I was working on the 6th Chapter of that great work given to us by the Apostle Paul, which actually is “The Theology of the Church.” I was studying some material written by the late Dr. Kenneth Wuest, a noted Greek Scholar and Brother, whose great love for the Lord was obvious in his writings. Dr. Wuest was explaining the “sin nature.”

All of a sudden, the Spirit of the Lord came over me, and He began to reveal to my heart the meaning of this aspect of our Christian experience. In a moment’s time, I saw it, and I saw it clearly. I can remember getting up from behind my desk and pacing back and forth across my office, tears streaming down my cheeks. The Lord then spoke to my heart and said, “You have asked Me the cause of your problem. It is the sin nature, and your lack of understanding about how it works and how it is to be controlled.”

Strangely enough, even though the Lord gave me this information, which was the answer to so many questions, still, at that time, He did not tell me how to control the sin nature. He just simply told me this was what constituted my problem, which also is the problem of every single Believer in the world who does not understand what the Lord gave to Paul, and which Paul gave to us. It is the 6th Chapter of Romans which deals with this extremely important subject, which I will explain momentarily to a greater degree.

Countless times, I had sought the Lord earnestly, asking Him how I could have the help of the Holy Spirit in doing the Work of the Lord, but not have His help regarding victory over the world, the flesh, and the Devil. I knew in my heart that this was not the way it was supposed to be, but, at that time, I did not have the knowledge about how perpetual victory could be attained.

I’ve always had a strong prayer life, and I tried my best to pray the problem away. To be sure, I was greatly blessed in my prayer vigils, which I continue unto this hour, and will ever continue, but I did not there find the victory I so earnestly sought.

For a while, I would pray an hour each day; then it got to the place where I would get up in the middle of the night and pray another hour. The reason I did this was because I did not know what else to do; I was fighting for my very life. The pain is even greater, more than words can even express, when the failure becomes obvious to all, and the Church, and I’m speaking of the Church world in general, claims that you are lying about your prayer life, and even resorts to making jokes at your expense about the whole situation.

Please read carefully the following:

“When a person is down, and can do nothing to defend himself, and anyone can do any negative thing to him they so desire, and will not only not be reprimanded, but rather applauded, then one finds out just how many true Christians there really are. Tragically, there aren’t many!”

If the sin nature is not properly understood, and thereby properly controlled, then works of the flesh are going to manifest themselves in one’s life. It does not matter who that person is, whether he is the Pastor of the largest Church in the world, or whether he is the Evangelist who draws the biggest crowds.

If such a person doesn’t understand the Cross as it regards Sanctification, works of the flesh will definitely manifest themselves in some way in such a person’s life and living. It is inevitable!

Works of the flesh

Paul tells us this in the 5th Chapter of Galatians. The entire Book of Galatians, but especially the 5th Chapter, is a warning from Paul to the Church at Galatia, which is also meant for us.

The warning is that if they place their faith in anything except Christ and Him Crucified, that Christ shall profit you nothing (Gal. 5:2).

The Apostle goes on to say that if the Believer doesn’t adhere to the Way of the Spirit, which is the Way of the Cross, then works of the flesh will manifest themselves.

He said:

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the Kingdom of God (Gal. 5:19-21).

Now let me say it again, because it is so very important:

If the Believer doesn’t understand the Cross of Christ, as it regards Sanctification, then, in some way, one or more of these “works of the flesh” are going to manifest themselves in his life. As stated, such is inevitable!

The first four,Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, and lasciviousness, are obvious and easily understood. But the modern Christian quickly dismisses idolatry, witchcraft, and heresies, thinking they do not really apply today.

Let us address that:

First of all, any suggested way of victory other than the Cross of Christ, such as the “Purpose Driven Life,” the“Government of Twelve,” the “Word of Faith,” or “Denominationalism,” etc., constitutes idolatry.

In effect, it is the same as Old Testament times, when Israel would begin to worship idols instead of Jehovah. To be sure, Israel actually referred to these idols as Jehovah; but the Lord definitely did not look at it in the same manner! And neither does He look any differently at modern idolatry!

Furthermore, all of this constitutes heresies, in which the modern Church abounds. Let me say it more clearly:

Any doctrine, way, scheme, or direction made up by men, which means it is devised by men and not by God, is constituted by the Lord as heresy, which is a work of the flesh.

Let me say it again, and because it is so very, very important! Any way other than “Christ and Him Crucified” is, in the eyes of God, “heresy.” Once one begins to understand these “works of the flesh,” these things become more obvious.

THE CROSS

I knew what the Lord had given me regarding the sin nature, and that it was the answer to my question Why?” But, as stated, when He revealed that to me, He didn’t give me the solution to the problem. He told me what the problem was, which was a great Truth, but yet, I didn’t have the solution; however, the Lord never does anything half way.

It was in one of the morning prayer meetings, actually only a few days after the Lord had given to me the Revelation of the sin nature. At that time, I was seeking the Lord, actually asking Him to reveal to me the solution to this problem.

How are we to address the sin nature?

How can we control it?

He began to speak to my heart.

“The answer which you seek is found in the Cross! The solution which you seek is found only in the Cross!”

I knew it was the Lord; of that I had no doubt. The Spirit of God flowed over my soul for the entire prayer meeting. I knew I had found the answer. I cannot even begin to tell you how I felt. It was like I had been in prison, the doors were now opened, and I was being told, Go free!

I had no doubt about what the Lord had told me. He said, “The solution which you seek is found in the Cross!” As the tears rolled down my cheeks and the Presence of the Lord filled my soul, I kept saying those words over and over again. In the days to come, He very speedily began to open up to me the Word of God, showing me exactly how it was, and is, the Cross.

He took me to Romans, Chapter 6

Paul said:

“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin (the sin nature), that Grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, who are dead to sin (dead to the sin nature), live any longer therein?” (Rom. 6:1-2).

These Passages let us know that sin, i.e., the sin nature, is the problem.

While Preachers might try to say that this, or that, or something else is the problem, the Holy Spirit tells us that sin is the problem. It might be a sin of commission or a sin of omission, but, to be sure, sin is the problem.

He then tells us that the only remedy for sin, the only solution for sin, the only answer to sin, is the Cross of Christ. In other words, the Holy Spirit through Paul takes the Believer straight to the Cross. Remember, Paul is not speaking here to unbelievers, but rather to Believers. As we attempt to live for God, and I mean live for God properly, this tells us that we must ever understand that it is the Cross of Christ where we must begin, and where we must end. There is nothing after the Cross of Christ, because there needs to be nothing after the Cross of Christ.

Paul said: 

Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into His death? “Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the Glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of His death, we shall be also in the likeness of His resurrection (Rom. 6:3-5).

Now let’s examine these same Passages from THE EXPOSITOR’S STUDY BIBLE.

Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ (plainly says that this Baptism is into Christ and not water [I Cor. 1:17; 12:13; Gal. 3:28-29; Eph. 4:5; Col. 2:11-13]) were baptized into His Death? (When Christ died on the Cross, in the Mind of God, we died with Him; in other words, He became our Substitute, and our identification with Him in His Death gives us all the benefits for which He died; the idea is that He did it all for us!“Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death (not only did we die with Him, but we were buried with Him as well, which means that all the sin and transgression of the past were buried; when they put Him in the Tomb, they put all of our sins into that Tomb as well): that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the Glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life (we died with Him, we were buried with Him, and His Resurrection was our Resurrection to a “Newness of Life”). “For if we have been planted together (with Christ) in the likeness of His death (Paul proclaims the Cross as the instrument through which all Blessings come; consequently, the Cross must ever be the object of our Faith, which gives the Holy Spirit latitude to work within our lives), we shall be also in the likeness of His Resurrection.” (We can have the “likeness of His Resurrection,” i.e., “live this Resurrection Life,” only as long as we understand the “likeness of His Death,” which refers to the Cross as the means by which all of this is done.)

1 Corinthians

The Lord then took me to 1 Corinthians.

Paul said there:

“For Christ sent me not to baptize (presents to us a Cardinal Truth), but to Preach the Gospel (the manner in which one may be saved from sin): not with wisdom of words (intellectualism is not the Gospel), lest the Cross of Christ should be made of none effect. (This tells us in no uncertain terms that the Cross of Christ must always be the emphasis of the Message.“For the Preaching (Word) of the Cross is to them who perish foolishness (Spiritual things cannot be discerned by unredeemed people, but that doesn’t matter; the Cross must be preached just the same, even as we shall see); but unto us who are saved, it is the Power of God. (The Cross is the Power of God simply because it was there that the total sin debt was paid, giving the Holy Spirit, in Whom the Power resides, latitude to work mightily within our lives.“But we preach Christ Crucified (this is the foundation of the Word of God, and thereby of Salvation), unto the Jews a stumbling block (the Cross was the stumbling block), and unto the Greeks foolishness (both found it difficult to accept as God a dead Man hanging on a Cross, for such Christ was to them)“And I, Brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom (means that Paul depended not on oratorical abilities, nor did he delve into philosophy, which was the rage of that particular day), declaring unto you the Testimony of God (which is Christ and Him Crucified)“For I determined not to know anything among you (with purpose and design, Paul did not resort to the knowledge or philosophy of the world regarding the Preaching of the Gospel), save Jesus Christ, and Him Crucified.” (That, and that alone, is the Message which will save the sinner, set the captive free, and give the Believer perpetual victory [I Cor. 1:17-18, 23; 2:1-2].)

Paul also said:

“But God forbid that I should glory (boast) save in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ (what the opponents of Paul sought to escape at the price of insincerity is the Apostle’s only basis of exultation), by Whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world. (The only way we can overcome the world, and I mean the only way, is by placing our Faith exclusively in the Cross of Christ, and keeping it there [Gal. 6:14).)

Seeing all of this, I began to understand that the story of the Bible, in its totality, is the story of Jesus Christ and Him Crucified. Jesus said as much.

The Words of Christ

After His Resurrection, with His Disciples still not believing that He has risen from the dead, He suddenly appeared to two of His Disciples as they were going to a village called Emmaus. The Disciples did not recognize Who He was; they thought He was merely a stranger.

The Scripture says, And He said unto them, What manner of communications are these that you have one to another, as you walk, and are sad? (Lk. 24:17). They began to relate to Him all the things which recently had happened.

Then He said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the Prophets have spoken: Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into His glory? And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself (Lk. 24:25-27).

The Cross of Christ is the foundation principle of all Biblical Doctrine.

It is the foundation because it is the first principle of Redemption, brought about in the Mind of God even before the foundation of the world (I Pet. 1:18-20). This means that every single doctrine must be built on the foundation of Christ and the Cross, or else, in some way, it will be spurious.

And that’s the problem with the modern Church; it is building doctrines on other foundations.

Paul addressed this by saying:

“According to the Grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise master-builder (in essence Paul, under Christ, founded the Church), I have laid the foundation (Jesus Christ and Him Crucified), and another builds thereon (speaks of all Preachers who followed thereafter, even unto this very moment, and have built upon this foundation). But let every man take heed how he builds thereupon. (All must preach the same Doctrine Paul preached, in essence,“Jesus Christ and Him Crucified.”For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid (anything other than the Cross is another foundation, and therefore unacceptable to the Lordwhich is Jesus Christ (Who He is, God manifest in the flesh, and what He did, Redemption through the Cross [I Cor. 3:10-11]).

In 1 Corinthians 1:17, which we have just quoted, the Holy Spirit through the Apostle tells us exactly what the Gospel is.

To be brief, it is the Cross of Christ.

As our Lord said to me, The answer for which you seek is found in the Cross, in effect, He actually said, In the Cross, and only in the Cross.

source: jsm.org

Franklin Graham Warns Hell Will Have ‘No Forgiveness’ or ‘Second Chances’ After Oscar Pistorius Gets Early Prison Release

Profile: Franklin Graham (03)

Evangelical preacher Franklin Graham has warned that there will be no forgiveness or second chances in hell, commenting on the early prison release of South African Paralympic runner Oscar Pistorius, who served only 10 months out of a five year sentence.

In hell, where all who are guilty of breaking God’s laws will be condemned for eternity, there will be no parole, no forgiveness, no second chances,
Graham warned in a Facebook post on Monday.

He added:

God is offering amnesty to all sinners if they are willing to repent and turn from their sins and receive God’s provision for their sin — the blood of His very own Son, Jesus Christ, who died on a Cross for the sins of all mankind, was buried, and God raised to life.

South African Olympic and Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius (C) is escorted to a police van after his sentencing at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria October 21, 2014. Pistorius was sentenced to five years in prison on Tuesday for killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, ending a trial that has gripped South Africa and the world.

Pistorious is expected to go into house arrest on Friday, having served only 10 months in prison for shooting his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, on Valentine’s Day in 2013.

The athlete rose to fame at the 2012 London Olympic Games, where he competed using carbon-fibre prosthetics and reached the semifinals of the 400m race against athletes with natural limbs, earning the nickname the “Blade Runner.”

Throughout the trial he maintained that Steenkamp’s death was a tragic accident, as he thought he was shooting at a robber hiding in the bathroom, and not his girlfriend. Judge Thokozile Masipa sentenced him to five years behind bars in October 2014 after he was convicted of culpable homicide.

Masipa said back then that “a non-custodial sentence would send the wrong message to the community. On the other hand, a long sentence would also not be appropriate either, as it would lack the element of mercy.”

Stephan Terblanche, an expert in sentencing and a professor at the University of South Africa, told CNN that the country’s prisons are overcrowded and underfunded, which could have played a role in Pistorius’ early release.

Steenkamp’s parents said in a letter, however, that serving 10 months for taking a human life is not an adequate punishment.

“Incarceration of 10 months for taking a life is simply not enough,” the statement from June and Barry Steenkamp read. “We fear that this will not send out the proper message and serve as a deterrent it should.”

The parents said that they have forgiven Pistorius, but stressed that those found guilty of a crime must be held accountable for their actions.

PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE)  Franklin Graham is shown in this file photo.

August 18, 2015 | by Stoyan Zaimov | Christian Post Reporter | Source: christianpost.com "Franklin Graham Warns Hell Will Have 'No Forgiveness' or 'Second Chances' After Oscar Pistorius Gets Early Prison Release"

BILLY GRAHAM: What Does God Have in Store for the Grand Finale?

Four Horses of the Apocalypse (YouTube)

Note: This article appeared in the April 1984 issue of Charisma. It’s just as pertinent today as it was when it ran more than 31 years ago.

There is definitely a “mystery of iniquity” attached to the four horses in chapter six of Revela­tion. We may not fully under­stand everything that will hap­pen when they come upon the earth.

But, Revelation does not end with chapter 6! For John points us in chapter 19 to another horse and rider—One who rides to bring the kingdom of God in all its fullness to earth. Like the first horse in chapter 6, this horse is white. But there the resemblance ends, for the rider of this horse is Jesus Christ Himself, coming in glory and power to the earth.

Let us see what the aged apostle is try­ing to tell us in the account of the rider on the white horse in Revelation 19. Chapters 7 to 18 deal with the catastrophic saga of history, perhaps just ahead, about which Jesus insisted we are to make no mistake, when “there will be great distress, unequaled from the begin­ning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again. If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:21, 22). It will be a time of nuclear conflagrations, biological holocausts and chemical apocalypses rolling over the earth, bring­ing man to the edge of the precipice. History will “bottom out” in the battle of Armageddon. We already see its shadow creeping over the earth.

Will man exterminate himself? He almost will, as Jesus stated. But just before man does so, Christ will come back! The demonized leaders “of the whole world” will have mobilized both as antagonists and protagonists of that coming world anti-God system—probably headed by the Antichrist. They’ll be “gathered,” we’re told, “together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon” (Revelation 16:16).

Franklin D. Roosevelt spoke of “the war to end all wars,” and now Ellen Goodman, the columnist, speaks of a possible ominous war ahead, “to end all life.” It won’t happen. God has other plans for the human race! Life is not going to be brought to a catastrophic end. God’s intervention will see to that.

Everywhere I go, people ask, “Are you an optimist or a pessimist?” My reply is that I’m an unswerving optimist. In the words of Robert Browning, “The best is yet to be.” I believe that, too.

It is estimated that forty wars are going on somewhere in the world at any given time. Any one of them could be the beginning of “the beginning of the end!”

So we have to ask: Can paradise be restored? Is there light at the end of the tunnel?

 
As the late Sir Winston Churchill asked a young American clergyman thirty years ago, “Young man, can you give me any hope?”

For the answer to Churchill’s question, I take you into the future by going back to the Bible.

In Revelation 19:10-13 the ancient apostle writes, “The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blaz­ing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one but he himself knows. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God.

So the four horses of the Apocalypse of Revelation 6 have gone on before. Other judgments have fallen. Now God is about to make His final move. 

The identity of the rider on the white horse in Revelation 19 is the Lord Jesus Christ, Israel’s Messiah, head of the church, the King of kings and Lord of lords. The white horse of deception in Revelation 6 darkens into a dirty gray in comparison to the impeccable, immaculate white horse here in Revelation 19. Whereas the red horse in Revelation 6 inflicts war to kill and defoliate, this white horse, with the mounted “King of kings” draped in a robe dipped in blood, declares war on the killers—to establish His kingdom of salvation and peace. Whereas the black horse of Revelation 6 carries famine and disease, the white horse of Revelation 19 brings healing and the Bread of Life. And whereas the pale horse of Revelation 6 brings death and hell, the white horse of chapter 19 brings life and heaven to all who place their faith in Him.

When will the Man on the white horse, as outlined in Revelation 19, appear?

The clear teaching of the Word of God is that He will come when man has sunk to his lowest and most perilous point in all history—the time when the four horses of the Apocalypse, with their mounted riders, have run their course and pushed man to the very edge of the precipice. There is an eerie feeling throughout society today that concurs with the late Dr. Albert Schweitzer, who lamented, “Man has lost the capacity to foresee and to forestall. He will end by destroying the earth.” Left to himself, that is precisely what man would do. Barbra Streisand put her finger on the problem; she is reported in Esquire as having said, “I do believe the world is coming to an end. I just feel that science, technology and the mind have surpassed the soul—the heart. There is no balance in terms of feeling and love for fellow man.”

Who is better qualified to make a state­ment on this theme than the dean of behaviorists, Harvard’s B.F. Skinner?

At 78, Skinner shocked the American Psychological Association Convention (1982) by asking in understandable anger and anguish, “Why are we not acting to save the world? Is there to be much more history at all?” Asked afterward, “Has the observer of social conditioning lost his optimism?” his reply was, “I have … When I wrote Beyond Freedom and Dignity, I was optimistic about the future. A decade ago there was hope, but today the world is fatally ill … It is a very depressing way to end one’s life … The argument that we have always solved our problems in the past and shall, therefore, solve this one is like reassuring a dying man by pointing out that he has always recovered from his illness” (Philadelphia Inquirer, September 25, 1982).

Of War and Peace

In his article on “Psychology and Armageddon” in Psychology Today (May 1982), Harvard Professor of Psychiatry Dr. Robert Coles describes a prevailing feeling worldwide that mankind is heading for its final Armageddon.

The gamble that man will have taken will be the worst in all history.

The Antichrist or system will be a monstrous impostor, the incarnation of iniquity.

And all people the world over will think and say, “We’ve been had!” As I wrote earlier in this book, there is coming a time in the future—whether near or far I do not know (since Jesus warned us not to speculate on dates), when a counterfeit world system or ruler will establish a false utopia for an extremely short time.

The economic and political problems of the world will seem to be solved. But after a brief rule the whole thing will come apart. During this demonic reign tensions will mount, and once again the world will begin to explode with a feroc­ity involving conflict on an unparalleled scale.

Even the grip of the world leaders will be unable to prevent it. This massive upheaval will be the world’s last war—the battle of Armageddon.

According to secular and scientific writers, there is an inevitability to man’s date with Armageddon. “Everybody who’s anybody believes that global war is imminent,” reckons Phil Surguy of Today.

Arming for Armageddon

If I were not a believer in Christ, I might at this point in history succumb to total pessimism.

On August 10, 1982 Ellen Goodman wrote in her column that with “Armageddon perhaps around the corner, what are intelligent people to do? Wrap ourselves in mourning sheets and wait for the end?” Are we to stare up at that intimidating nuclear sword of Damocles that “has hung over us like some apocalypse without the promise of redemption?”

Emphatically not! Jesus urged that when universal holocaust begins “to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near” (Luke 21:28). Rather than pulling mourning sheets around us, we are to look for redemption in Christ. We are also to work as if these events are far in the future. Jesus promised a blessing on those who would be found working when their Lord returns.

I will not here deal with the who, what, why, how or when of Armageddon. But I know from a vast number of Scriptures that Armageddon will be interrupted by the return of Jesus Christ on the white horse leading the armies of heaven, as clearly prophesied in many Bible passages. In no place is it more definitively or dramatically described than in Revelation 19.

When John foresaw “heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True,” he went on to describe the rider as “the Word of God” followed by the armies of heaven “riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean.” Turning his focus back on the coming Messiah, John saw that “out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the na­tions. ‘He will rule them with an iron scepter’ ” (Revelation 19:11-15). And in case anyone gets confused as to His iden­tity or authority, John makes it un­mistakably plain, “On His robe and on His thigh He has this name written: King of kings and Lord of lords” (Revelation 19:16).

The Man on the White Horse

What does the man on the white horse do?

John makes clear that He and His army from heaven are faced with the An­tichrist and the military forces gathered together to make war not only against each other but against the armies of heaven. But the Antichrist is “captured, and with him the false prophet who had performed the miraculous sign on his behalf. With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped his image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur” (Revelation 19:20). The Antichrist’s collaborators and colleagues are all conquered by Jesus Christ.

Adolf Hitler’s grandiose notion of Nazism was that he would “last a thou­sand years.” It didn’t happen! Time (January 4, 1982) points back to Mao Tse-tung’s global “export of revolution” as an obsessive vision “to hasten the Communist millennium.” Mao’s aegis is gone, his vision already radically altered.

People may ask: Is John the only one who in this way made Christ’s second coming to this earth so plain?

No, the oldest extant quotation from all literature, to a Bible believer, has to be Jude 14 and 15. Jude cited, “Enoch, the seventh from Adam, who prophesied that the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of His holy ones to judge everyone” alive, including “all the ungodly.” And the ungodliest man or system ever will be the Antichrist. Paul wrote to the Thessalonians, “The Lord Jesus will overthrow [that lawless one] with the breath of His mouth and destroy [him] by the splendor of His coming” (2 Thessalonians 2:8).

The Return of Jesus Christ

The return of Jesus Christ is the great assurance for the Christian.

Seymour Siegel has commented, “The central problem of Christianity is: If the Messiah has come, why is the world so evil? For Judaism, the problem is: If the world is so evil, who does the Messiah not come?” The Messiah is coming to solve both dilemmas, and perhaps soon! Every devout orthodox Jewish worshiper prays every day, “I believe with complete faith in the coming of the Messiah. Even though He tarry, yet I will wait for Him every coming day.”

The Scripture says, “The government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over His kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever” (Isaiah 9:6,7).

The late Arnold Toynbee of Cam­bridge foresaw that “only a world government can save mankind from annihilation by nuclear weapons.” That’s right! And Jesus Christ will be the King over all the earth in His theocratic world government.

Jonathan Schell’s book The Fate of the Earth, which I have quoted several times, envisages a day when “existing institu­tions must give way to some sort of transcendent sovereignty and security, presumably by a government that em­braces all mankind,” in fact “world government” (Time, April 19, 1982). That will happen when Christ returns.

What Happens to the Nuclear Monster?

And when Jesus Christ really does return to this earth with His saints to set up His kingdom, where He’ll rule as King of kings and Lord of lords, what will happen to what remains of the un­counted weapons of mass destruction, such as nuclear weapons and the biological, chemical, laser and outer-space weaponry that is today increasingly stockpiled around the world?

As I men­tioned earlier, on a statue across from the United Nations building in New York is the inscription, “They will beat their swords into plowshares.” Where did that quotation come from? From the Bible!

In Micah 4, only one of many scriptural prophecies which deal with this catastrophic question, we read that the world’s “nations will come and say, ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house (of the true God who)… will teach us His ways.’ ” As King of the world “He will judge be­tween many peoples and will settle disputes for strong nations far and wide. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war any more. Every man will sit under his own vine and under his own fig tree, and no one will make them afraid, for the Lord Almighty has spoken” (vv.2-4).

But in the long run the beating of “swords into plowshares” is something Jesus Christ Himself, as King over all the earth, will effectively enact.

The King Is Coming!

As Bill and Gloria Gaither lyricized for the world to sing, indeed “The King Is Coming!” What was future tense for Isaac Watts will be present tense then—”Jesus shall reign, where’er the sun/doth his successive journeys run;/His kingdom spread from shore to shore;/till moons shall wax and wane no more.” That precious promise makes life here exciting every moment, regardless of the circumstances.

The New Catholic Encyclopedia points out that the result of Christ’s triumph over Antichrist and the forces of evil will be a reign of Jesus Christ and His saints of all the ages over an earth that will know unprecedented prosperity and peace. From time immemorial, man has longed for a combination of true law and order, of peace and prosperity, of freedom and fulfillment, of health and happiness, of godliness and longevity on this earth. It will happen when Christ comes again to set up His kingdom.

A New World Coming

There can be no new world under pre­sent conditions. Something dramatic has to happen to alter man and his world.

That leaves us with only one absolute cer­tainty about the future: Christ as the Prince of Peace, with the government upon His shoulders. The utopian dreams and schemes of the Platos, the Bellamys, the Owens and similar philosophers and idealists throughout history will all be fulfilled through His rule. That’s the message of the God-Man on the white horse coming down out of heaven, which the apostle John foresaw and recorded in Revelation 19.

John Milton yearned for “Paradise Restored.” I’m sure that for nearly a thousand years Adam longed to get back into the Garden of Eden, from which he was driven because of his sin. But he couldn’t! Professor John Walvoord puts it concisely, “The longing for perfect government, righteousness, equity, economic prosperity, and deliverance from insecurity and fears which plague the modern world finds its answer in the return of Christ and the establishment of His kingdom.”

The Scriptures have a great deal to teach us about the world of the coming Christ. The Messiah will take complete charge of the peoples of the entire earth. He “will stand as a banner for the peoples; the nations will rally to him, and his place of rest will be glorious,” assures Isaiah. “The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him—the spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the spirit of counsel and of power, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.” Throughout the world today people crave a society of peace and provision, but also one of goodness and justice. The Messiah Christ will implement all these, as “with righteousness He will judge the needy, with justice He will give decisions for the poor of the earth,” as “righteousness will be His belt and faithfulness the sash around His waist.” Will it work? Yes: “they will neither harm nor destroy … for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11:10, 2-5, 9).

So transformed will the prevailing order be that even the animal world will be completely tamed. “The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. The infant will play near the hole of the cobra, and the young child put his hand into the viper’s nest. They will neither harm nor destroy” is the promise of the coming King (Isaiah 11:6-9). This will be in complete contrast to the savage beasts, scavenger birds, devouring in­sects and raging diseases that have been among the most ferocious foes of primitive and civilized man from the Adamic to the atomic ages.

A Message from the Messiah

This leads me to contemplate from the Scriptures that future era under the reign of the Messiah.

Sickness will be remedied by Christ, the great Healer of nations. And He will remove all defor­mities and handicaps. At that time there’ll be no designated spots on parking lots, or graduated ramps on buildings, for the handicapped. There will be no blindness, deafness, muteness, paralysis—no need for eyeglasses, hearing aids, speech therapy, wheelchairs, crutches, or white canes. “No one living,” assures Isaiah (33:24), “will say, ‘I am ill.’ ” “I will restore you to health and heal your wounds, declares the Lord” through Jeremiah (30:17). “Declares the Sover­eign Lord” through Ezekiel (34:15, 16), “I will bind up the injured.” “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come,” prophesies Isaiah, and “then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the tongue of the dumb shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert. The burning sand will become a pool, the thirsty ground bubbling springs. In the haunts where jackals once lay, grass and reed and papyrus will grow. And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness” (Is. 35:4-8).

“Surely the day is coming” prophesied Malachi (4:1, 2) in the last chapter of the Old Testament, when the peoples of the world will finally “revere My name, the sun of righteousness will rise with heal­ing in its wings.” And in the last chapter of the New Testament, we read that there will stand in that era “the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse” (Rev. 22:2, 3). “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Rev. 21:4).

Currently, as Paul wrote to the Romans (8:18-21, 22), “the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.” But “our present sufferings are not worth compar­ing with the glory that will be revealed,” for the whole “creation waits in eager ex­pectation for the sons of God to be re­vealed, for the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.”

Our Vanishing Problems

We’ve had enormous controversies in and beyond the church, throughout the world, on birth control, abortion and euthanasia. These problems will all vanish as the curse on the earth is re­moved, and in place of thorns and thistles, drought and deserts, will be fruits and vegetables, fountains and fertility.

Rabbi Dr. Harvey Fields was so right recently to exclaim, partly from ex­asperation but mostly from expectation, “Without the Messiah, the human enter­prise would crash into darkness forever.” But thank God, the Messiah is coming. He saves individuals today. In the great tomorrow, He will make all creation.

One day it will happen. The prophet Isaiah predicted, “The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy.” Yes, the world will be like the “splendor of Carmel and Sharon; they will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God” (Is. 35:1, 2).

A Pointed Invitation

With that kind of future ahead for believers, and beyond that in eternity with Christ and the believers of all the ages in a new heaven as well as a new earth, I could not finish this without a pointed invitation to you as a reader to be absolutely sure that you are Christ’s.

And in feeling this way so strongly, I am only reflecting exactly the way the an­cient apostle John felt. He simply could not conclude the Revelation of Jesus Christ without making the last six verses of his book one of the most compelling invitations to repent of sin and receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord to be found anywhere in the entire Bible.

“I, Jesus, have sent My angel to give you this testimony for the churches,” is what we read in Revelation 22:16. Jesus Christ Himself wants John to make no mistake about it. After envisaging a panorama of scenes covering the past, the present and the future; after peering deep into the heavens, the earth and hell; after being introduced to God, to man all the way from his best to his worst and to Satan himself—Jesus wants the last word!

Why? Because, as we read in chapter 1 (v. 5), He is the one above all others “who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood” shed on the cross for our sins to purchase our pardon and peace. And He is, therefore, the One to whom we are ultimately as well as im­mediately answerable. Later in that first chapter (vv. 17, 18) He assured, “I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One, I was dead and behold I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades”—of hell itself!

In chapter 3 (v. 20) Jesus comes a step closer and declares, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will go in and eat with him, and he with Me.” Jesus is saying to you, right now, that if you have never admitted Him as Savior and Lord into your life, you not only vitally need to do so now, you can do so now! Many say, “There is no need.” But the goodness of God should lead to repentance.

When, however, difficulties and heartaches come into your life, God can use those “hard knocks” to show you your need of Christ in every cir­cumstance. It may be a business disap­pointment, a reverse in your love life, a broken marriage, a tragic bereavement, a hopelessly severed or even strained relationship between you and a parent or child. It could be the gradual or rapid deterioration of your own health. Whatever your disappointment, it’s His appointment!

So He’s knocking at your heart’s door, just as when there’s a knock on the door of your home. You may open the door and invite the individual on the threshold in to share in your hospitality and friend­ship. Or you may indeed simply ignore the knock. It’s that way with Jesus knock­ing at your heart’s door. Right now, you can bow your head on an airplane, in a jail—in an office, in a hotel, in a hospital or in your home, and you can open your heart to Christ by a simple prayer of faith.

So we have this good news made possi­ble in the past by Christ’s everlasting love and death on the cross for us.

And we have His knocking at our heart’s door in the present, seeking possession of our lives, not only for our eternal benefit, but—incredibly—for His also. He wants to “show us off” to the rest of the universe as an example of what His grace can do. Then, in chapter 4 (v. 1) we are shown the future, invited through John’s eyes to look ahead: “And there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, ‘Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.’ ” And Jesus gives us a pre­view of the heaven He has gone to prepare for us.

You ask: What if I reject Jesus Christ and choose instead the way of sin? He is also loving and caring enough to warn you of the peril of that route.

In Revela­tion 21 He makes unmistakably clear that “the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters, and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur.” Then He assures, “This is the second death” (Rev. 21:8), so “I, Jesus,” in­itiate this final biblical invitation. “I, Jesus … give you this testimony” (Rev. 22:16).

Accompanying Christ’s testimony is the powerful voice of the Holy Spirit who says, “Come! (Rev. 22:17).

It would be completely futile for me to preach the gospel, as I have done to many people every year for the past generation, if the Holy Spirit were not convicting the hearers of their sin and prompting them to open their hearts to Christ. And your reading of this is entirely in vain, if through doing so, the Holy Spirit has not inspired you to spiritual growth or, if you are not a believer, issued an unmistakable call to you to give your life to Jesus Christ. Right now, the Holy Spirit is say­ing one thing to you, “Come!” Come to Christ! Open your life to His salvation and to His control.

In verse 17 we read, “the Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come!’ ” The bride of Christ is His church. It is made up of those who have received Him as Lord and Savior. Doing so, we take His name and are thereafter known as Christians. We love Him and we live with Him as our Lord, to the exclusion of all others. He has promised to provide for all of our needs. So, we’re the bride! He is the bridegroom!

Then again, Jesus invites, “Let him who hears say, ‘Come!’ ” (v. 17). We’re told that “faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ” (Rom. 10:17). One of the verses I have used most frequently to lead people into a sav­ing experience with Jesus Christ is John 5.24. It is Jesus speaking, “I tell you the truth, whoever hears My word and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” That’s one of the clearest promises in all of the Bible as to how to come to Christ. Then, when we come to Christ, we’ll urge others to come to Christ. When we con­fess Jesus as Lord of our lives, we’ll want to confess Him before others.

Whoever is thirsty, let him come” (Rev. 22:17), testifies Jesus! So many are chronically thirsty but can’t put a finger on what that thirst is or a handle on how to quench it. Pascal, the great French physicist and philosopher of the 17th cen­tury, noted that all humans have in their hearts a God-shaped void that only Jesus can fill. John had already written in his Gospel years before what Jesus said to a morally mixed-up woman at the Samaritan well: “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:13, 14).

Do you have that thirst deep down in your soul that has characterized all people who have ever lived, but espe­cially many of the great men and women of history?

Riches cannot quench that thirst! Knowledge cannot quench that thirst! Alcohol cannot quench that thirst! Drugs cannot quench that thirst! Sex or romance cannot quench that thirst! But Christ can! And He asks you right now, wherever you are, to come to Him. Believe in Him! Tell Him that you do! Call upon Him to save your soul, to satisfy your thirst with the water of eter­nal life.

Again, in Revelation 22:17, Jesus repeats the invitation one final time with the strongest and most inclusive call of all: “And whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life.” By this, Jesus is saying that—from our human viewpoint—a decision for Christ is en­tirely a matter of the will. God has done everything possible to bring you salva­tion; you can add nothing to what He has done. If you wish to be saved and go to heaven, you can, by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior. If you wish not to be saved and therefore to be lost forever, that also is your privilege. In­sofar as Jesus is concerned, He “wants, all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:4).

Peter, writing the closing chapter of his two letters, pleads that Christ is certainly “not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance” (2 Pet. 3:9). I cannot think of how God could open the door wider for you to enter into the household of faith! And to be sure that no one thinks salvation is something we buy, contribute to or earn, He clarifies, “Take the free gift.”

Jesus Christ rose from the dead to be alive forever. And because He is alive, and because He can be everywhere at once, He is right there where you’re reading. All you have to do is take Him, receive Him.

You might reply, “But I’ve received people into my life before, in relation­ships that didn’t last and I’m wondering, will Jesus Christ love me and leave me? Will He take me and then forsake me, even perhaps forget that I exist?

No! In the next to the last verse in the Bible, Jesus “testifies” to you, “Yes, I am coming soon.” The old apostle is so happy about that reassurance that he replies, “Come, Lord Jesus!” When you really mean your commitment to Christ not just as a momentary, but as an ongo­ing relationship, you will have Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior forever. You can choose to “be with the Lord forever” (1 Thess. 4:17).

You may have one final hesitation. You may ask, “But could I live the Christian life on my own?

No, you couldn’t! But you will not be on your own. Christ gives you day-by-day and moment-by-moment His unmerited favors. He strengthens, energizes and directs your life. The last verse in the Bible, Revelation 22:21, promises, “The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.” What more could you desire, ask or ever hope for than that the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you forever?

Let me offer you a final suggestion.

I had led tens of thousands who have come forward to make decisions for Christ in every part of the world ‘in this simple prayer:

“O God, I am a sinner. I’m sorry for my sins. I’m willing to turn from my sins.

I receive Christ as Savior.

I confess Him as Lord. From this moment on I want to follow Him and serve Him in the fellowship of His church.

In Christ’s name, Amen.”

8/14/2015 | Billy Graham | Source: charismamag.com "BILLY GRAHAM: What Does God Have in Store for the Grand Finale?"

Make Jesus ‘Lord’ of Your Life

Word for Every Day feature

if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus…‘ Romans 10:9 NKJV

There are two parts to being a Christian.

First, you must accept Jesus as your Saviour.

Second, and much more difficult, you must make Jesus your Lord – ‘the undisputed boss’! There is just enough ego in each of us to want to be in control, and that part of us must be crucified daily. Crucifixion is one of the most painful deaths you can experience because you die slowly and excruciatingly. As long as your ego has breath left in it, it will rise up and fight for control.

When you make Jesus Lord of your life, you give up control in three areas:

(1) Jesus, not you, decides where you will go.

(2) Jesus, not you, decides the price you’ll have to pay.

(3) Jesus, not you, decides the person you’ll become.

Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it‘ (Matthew 13:45-46 NKJV). Note the words ‘all that he had’. If you want to know the cost of making Jesus Lord of your life, it will cost you all you have. This man valued the pearl so highly that he considered it worth any price he had to pay.

So here’s the question: What value do you place on your relationship with Christ?

This man believed that the return would be greater than the investment.

Do you believe that? Salvation is free, but making Jesus Lord of your life demands that you surrender your all to Him. Are you ready for that? Are you willing?

Soul Food: Lam 1:1 – 3:39; Matt 13:47-58; Ps 113; Pro 14:1-4

Written by Bob & Debby Gass

Friday, 29 May 2015

Christmas: The Lord Jesus Christ: Saviour of the World

Jack van Impe feature

The Holy Bible gives God’s Son manifold titles.

However, the one that means so much to all of us as poor, helpless sinners is “Saviour“- which immediately instills hope within one’s heart concerning salvation.

The very name Jesus means “salvation.
Matthew 1:21 states, Thou shall call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Multitudes today are trusting in man-made rituals to get them inside God’s heaven. Yet, there isn’t a ceremonial rite in all of Christendom’s churches that can save a man. Jesus Christ alone is the only way to eternal life.

Christ’s saving power

In that tremendous portion of Scripture often described as the “Magnificat,1)The Magnificat {Latin for: [My soul] magnifies} wikipedia” Mary, the mother of Jesus, cried out, My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour (Luke 1:46,47). In Luke 2, the angel of the Lord appeared to the shepherds, saying, Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord (Luke 2:10,11).

Also in Luke 2, Simeon had been waiting for the consolation or hope of Israel. He jubilantly exclaimed, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation (Luke 2:29,30). He was looking upon the Christ child as he spoke those words.

Again in John 4, a wicked woman-who had five husbands and who was living under common law with number six-turned to Jesus Christ for forgiveness. Then she excitedly ran back to the city and told the people about her newfound joy in this Saviour who had blotted out her sordid past. The men of that city listened to the Lord’s discourses for two days and exuberantly stated, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world (John 4:42).

In Acts 5:33, Peter and some of the apostles were threatened with punishment, even unto death (verse 33). However, the great Apostle Peter so loved Jesus. He believed so strongly in the fact that Jesus was the only way of salvation and eternal life that he was willing to die in order that the message might be proclaimed. I can almost hear this impulsive preacher saying, We ought to obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour (Acts 5:29-31).

Acts 13:23 calls Him a Saviour, Jesus. Ephesians 5:23 says, Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Compare this verse with 1 Corinthians 12:13, For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body. The body of Christ, into which one is implanted at the time of regeneration, is the Church, and Ephesians 5:23 states that Christ is the Saviour of this body. Baptism, reformation, confirmation, works, creeds, and human efforts cannot place one into the true Church because only the Lord Jesus Christ is the Saviour of this body. Amen!

The Apostle Paul stated that one of the reasons he was willing to endure suffering, torture, and even death was because of his trust in the Saviour. Death could only mean that the One who saved him would welcome him home to heaven. Hear him in 1 Timothy 4:10. For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.

In 2 Timothy 1:9-10, Paul went on to say that it was not a system of self-attainment through works that would place him eternally in the glory land, but rather a precious Saviour whose name was Jesus Christ. Listen to the simplicity of these instructive verses. [God] hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began. But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel [or through the good news].

Again, He hath abolished death. What wonderful words! And [He] hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. Immortality speaks of eternal life-and it comes through the gospel or the “good news.

Do you get the impact?

Eternal life is through the gospel and gospel meansgood news.

This good news is explained in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 where we find that Christ died, was buried, and rose again the third day according to the Scriptures. Put it all together and it simply says that everlasting life does not come through one’s denominational record or good works. It comes as a result of one’s acceptance of the Saviour’s death by the shedding of blood and of His resurrection.

Titus 2:13 speaks of Christ’s return by stating, Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. Notice that it is not Buddha, Mohammed, or Zoroaster who is the Saviour, but only the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no other Saviour-Jesus is the only way. 2 Peter 1:1 again calls Him our Saviour Jesus Christ.

Christ’s earthly ministry

Saviour” is not some honorary title which was bestowed upon the Lord Jesus Christ in recognition of His wonderful teachings. Rather, it depicts His ministry upon earth and speaks of His saving power.

Presently, we are living in a time of rebellion. Corrupted mankind is trying to destroy all of our foundational structures. This trend can also be witnessed in the religious world as apostate, liberal clergymen mock the doctrines of the virgin birth, the deity of Christ, His blood atonement upon the cross, and His bodily resurrection. Many laugh at the statement “Jesus Saves” as if the word “saves” were an invention of some simpleton.

Our God predicted this would happen, and it is one of the signs of the end. Second Peter 2:1,2: But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be [one of the signs] false teachers among you, who privity shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.

There are two things one can do for these poor misguided souls:

(1) pray for them, and

(2) thank God for their presence because it means that Jesus Christ is coming soon to call Christians home.

Let them laugh. The term saved was placed in the Bible scores of times by a holy God. One had better investigate and accept this truth if he is interested in eternal life.

I could quote numerous verses proving that salvation is of God and that God put this word in the Bible.

However, let’s limit our discussion to those which speak exclusively about Christ being the way of salvation:

Thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins (Matthew 1:21).

For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost (Matthew 18:11).

God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him [Jesus] might be saved (John 3:17).

Jesus said,

I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved (John 10:9).

I came not to judge the world, but to save the world (John 12:47).

Paul said,

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved (Acts 16:31).

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ 2){not rites, ceremonies, rituals, the Sermon on the Mount, the Golden Rule, or the Ten Commandments, but the gospel or the good news of Christ}:for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth (Romans 1:16).

We shall be saved from wrath through him (Romans 5:9).

If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved (Romans 10:9).

In 1 Corinthians 15:1,2 we find this statement, Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel [the good news] which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved.

How?

1 Corinthians 15:3-4: Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and…he was buried, and…he rose again the third day according to the scriptures. This alone is the message of the gospel, the good news, the only way of salvation. Christ died, shed His blood, and rose again.

Christ’s redeeming blood

Christ’s power to save all the world was wrought through His precious blood shed on Calvary.

Leviticus 17:11: It is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul. Acts 20:28: The church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. 1 Peter 1:18-19: Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. Revelation 1:5: Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood. Yes, without [the] shedding of blood [there] is no remission [of sins] (Hebrews 9:22).

It is not enough simply to state that Christ died-as so many intellectuals do today in order to do away with the sacrifice of His blood.

A bloodless death on the cross would not have saved anyone.

Let me repeat that. Had Christ died of a heart attack or of suffocation upon the cross, mankind would have been lost forever, for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul. Because of this fact, Christ came to earth to take upon himself a body with blood so that He might shed that blood for our sins (see Hebrews 10:5). When one receives this sacrifice of the shed blood of Jesus Christ, he is saved immediately.

Christ’s redemptive purpose

Text

If the Lord Jesus Christ is the Saviour and has saving power, we may conclude that He came to earth because sinners need saving. This is exactly what Paul said. This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners (Timothy 1:15). Not only does this statement include everyone we know, but ourselves as well. Christ would have all men to be saved, including you and me (see 1 Timothy 2:4). [Christ] gave himself a ransom for all (1 Timothy 2:6).

The only reason some people will never get saved is that they do not realize that they are lost.

They think they were born into sainthood just like the Pharisee in the temple. He said, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are (Luke 18:11). However, Jesus said in Matthew 5:20, Except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Why? The Pharisees were so caught up in the admiration of their own goodness that they were convinced they needed nothing from God-nothing at all!

Yet, God says in Isaiah 64:6, We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags.

Galatians 3:22: The scripture hath concluded all under sin.

Thus, God not only wants to save mankind from the misery of sin in this life, but also from the eternal penalty into which sin will drag those who reject Christ. He that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth [eternity] on him (John 3:36).

Why? Because he won’t receive the Son.

Oh, my friend, if you are lost, the Saviour longs to save you.

You need saving because all are sinners and only through His blood can you be washed white. You may be whitewashed because you’ve had all the rituals of the Church performed upon you, but you really need to be washed white to inherit eternal life! Why not call on Him right now, saying, “Lord Jesus, come into my heart.”

A MESSAGE OF HOPE FROM DR. JACK VAN IMPE

Dec 30, 2013 | Jan 03, 2015

References   [ + ]

1. The Magnificat {Latin for: [My soul] magnifies} wikipedia
2. {not rites, ceremonies, rituals, the Sermon on the Mount, the Golden Rule, or the Ten Commandments, but the gospel or the good news of Christ}

The Greatest inheritance

Profile: Gary (01) Feature

The Greatest inheritance we can ever give our children: Gods way of living and being: the pathway to Eternal Life.

And a Death took place to ensure you could have it the very moment your were in your mothers womb.

The Death was Gods Son 

When your parents embraced the work he did on the cross. They were declared  “righteous

You the Children became a benefactors by way of Gods spoken words that the “righteous Man” ….

Psalm 37:25-26 King James Version (KJV) 

25 I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. 26 He is ever merciful, and lendeth; and his seed is blessed

Children from a Christian Home:

Have much to thank God for especially that their parents laid the pathway to Eternal Life before them and kept them in the shadow of the Almighty whilst they were in their care.

First generation Believers:

{Mums an Dad} Fight the Battles which their Children are spared from as the beginning of the Blessing starts to flow generation-ally, so the children begin to enjoy the fruits of “the Righteous man

So when Children prosper – the chicken or the egg question is posed, is the prosperity all because of the Chicken or is it that the Egg came from a “Righteous Man” that produced the next generational Chicken. 
I would propose Being second generation believers enjoy the fruits of their parents spiritual labor and also enjoy a head start from whence the parent came, just a bit of Godly commonsense tell ones that.

So Remember: Isaiah 51:1 English Standard Version (ESV)

… look to the rock from which you were hewn,
    and to the quarry from which you were dug.


Saving Faith

Word for Every Day feature

…What must I do to be saved?Acts 16:30 NIV

After her first flight, someone asked an elderly lady what she thought of being on a plane. She said, ‘It was ok, but I never did put my whole weight on it.‘ And we do the same when we refuse to place our trust on the finished work of Christ.
Most major religions answer the question, ‘What must I do to be saved? by handing you a book of rules you must keep to get to Heaven.
A lot of us try and give up in discouragement. Satan doesn’t lead you away from God’s grace – he tries to make you earn it instead.

When asked,What must I do to be saved?

Paul didn’t say, ‘Work harder, pray longer, give more, and be more moral.

No, he said,
Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved…(Acts 16:31 NIV).
Believing is the root of the tree we call salvation; behaving is the fruit that grows on it. We don’t do good works to be saved – our good works are just an expression of love and gratitude to the One who already saved us.

The Bible says,

…We should be holy and without blame…(Ephesians 1:4 NKJV).

Without blame? 

That’s an impossible standard!

The only way that will happen is if God takes the righteousness of Christ and credits it to our account. And

He does! ‘God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God(2 Corinthians 5:21 NIV).

The moment you place your trust in Christ, God sees you as ‘righteous’, and on that basis He accepts you 24/7. 

Aren’t you glad?

Editors Note:  for more information regarding salvation how who and what we recommend you visit the Dailybread.com.au 

Soul Food: Num 25-26, Matt 12:22-37, Ps 120, Pro 3:33-35

Written by Bob & Debby Gass
Thursday, 6 February 2014

the-word-for-every-day