Sunday, March 27, 2016

THE VALUE OF QUESTIONS

Matthew_18:3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
What did Jesus intend to teach us when He made this statement that we should be converted and become as little children. We have often said that he wants us to be humble and innocent as little children and that is true. There are other characteristics of a child that we should consider. One characteristic of a child that we should imitate is their hunger for knowledge and their persistent questions. There is great value in asking questions.

When we ask questions, we should be very careful to ensure that the motivation for asking the question is the desire to know the truth. We must not ask questions for the purpose of avoiding the truth and causing confusion and strife. We should not be intentionally argumentative or promote division. It is important that we know the truth about our own attitude.

Questions should be accompanied with compassion, longsuffering, patience and a sincere desire to understand and do justice. How many times do children ask why or what or how questions?  We should be patient with them and do our best to answer their questions. We should be just as patient with adults asking questions to know and understand.

Psalms_53:2 God looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, that did seek God.

God is looking and watching to see if anyone will seek to know God. Are there any who are asking questions and seeking to know the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ?  Is there anyone studying to know the answers to their questions about God?  If you humbly and sincerely ask God questions, He will teach you the answer or have someone teach you the answer.

James_1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

God wants you to ask because asking puts you into a proper frame of mind to receive instruction. If you do not ask, perhaps it is because you don't want to know.  

Jeremiah_6:16 Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

The moral and righteous principles of God are unchanging from age to age. God has always called His people to holiness, obedience and the walk of faith. He has not changed. Many people are looking for new ways to be saved from their sins. The “old path” of holiness (living free from sin) is the good way.

Jeremiah_38:14 Then Zedekiah the king sent, and took Jeremiah the prophet unto him into the third entry that is in the house of the LORD: and the king said unto Jeremiah, I will ask thee a thing; hide nothing from me.

Zedekiah had the right attitude about receiving instruction from Jeremiah. He wanted to know the truth to the question he had to ask. Some people will ask their question and they do not want to hear the truth. God knows your attitude and purpose. He knows why you ask and why you don't ask.

Jeremiah_50:5 They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces thitherward, saying, Come, and let us join ourselves to the LORD in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten.

Not many people want to know the “way to Zion” in our day. The way to Zion is by repentance and obedience. Those who are in Zion are holy and keep the commandments of God. They continually
call upon God to give them more wisdom and discernment desiring to be better servants of God.

Haggai_2:11 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Ask now the priests concerning the law,

God has ordained that there be priests and pastors to teach the people. If you do not have a pastor, you should ask God to give you a pastor. Then, you would have someone to ask the questions you need answered.  There are several examples in the scriptures where we see God instructing a person to go talk to the man of God.  God does not always answer your questions directly, He will often send you to ask your pastor to see if you are humble enough to submit to another person.  God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble. 

Matthew_7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:

It is not necessary to tell a hungry man to eat. If you set food before him, he will eat. When people do not ask questions, I wonder if they really want to know. If you really want to know something, you will ask questions. There are many things we must ask and seek for.

Matthew_7:11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

Act 8:27 And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,
Act 8:28 Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.
Act 8:29 Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
Act 8:30 And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
Act 8:31 And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him

Philip asked the Ethiopian a question and the Ethiopian asked Philip a question. That is the way communication works. By asking questions, we understand what a person knows and what they do not know.

Matthew_21:24 And Jesus answered and said unto them, I also will ask you one thing, which if ye tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things.

James_4:2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.

2Timothy 2:23 But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.

Titus_3:9 But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.

We should not ask foolish questions and we do not need to answer foolish questions.
If we desire to know the answers, then we should respectfully and thoughtfully ask the right questions. 
 
In your relationships with family, friends and saints there ought to be a free flow of helpful and friendly questions and answers. Don't be offended or overly defensive when people ask you questions. If someone is intentionally trying to hurt you, you need not answer them. We should not debate with a foolish person. However, don't be too quick to use the aforementioned counsel as an excuse to not share information. You must be willing to participate in a healthy question and answer session in order to build strong relationships of mutual respect, understanding and trust.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

THE MYSTERY OF THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST

The Gospel of Jesus Christ is a spiritual mystery to most of the people in the world today. For many years, decades, people have been taught false doctrines which appeal to the fleshly, carnal desires of sinful men and women. Church buildings are full of people who want someone to tickle their ears with fair speeches and comforting words. They do not want to hear the truth and they are easily led away into religious hypocrisy.

The problems with our government, our politics, our communities, our congregations and our families can be traced back to their departure from the righteous and holy principles of God. Men and women have pleaded with their pastor to “tone down” his judgment preaching. Pastors were told to be more forgiving and less critical of the members in the congregation which were given to profanity, smoking, drinking, worldly entertainment, worldly attire, etc. Religious people will say, "If we are going to build up the congregation, we must not offend the people and “run them off.”

Ezekiel_33:32 And, lo, thou art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not.

The preacher may include many wonderful scriptures in his sermon, but the people will not do them. They have ears to hear, but they cannot hear, because the message of truth is not given to the rebellious and disobedient. If a person has no desire to obey God, keep His commandments and live right, then he will not receive any understanding of the holy message which God sends to those who seek Him with their whole heart. God does not send His messages of truth to any person unless they desire it and seek for it.

2Co 4:1 Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not;
2Co 4:2 But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.
2Co 4:3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:
2Co 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Has the god of this world blinded your mind so that you can not hear, recognize and understand the gospel of Jesus Christ?

Paul gave a strong warning to the people lest they listen to some man or woman who has not the Holy Spirit of God and who will teach them false doctrine and deceive their souls.

Galatians 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:
Gal 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
Gal 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

There is only one true gospel of Jesus Christ and it is the one which the Holy Spirit teaches you through the preaching of truth. It is the truth of holiness which is produced by perfect love, faith, obedience and the Holy Spirit. As you desire truth and seek for it, then the Holy Spirit will minister to your heart the ability to understand.

People read their Bible and listen to sermons with preconceived ideas and opinions which hinder them from being enlightened by the truth. They will not allow themselves to be corrected by the Holy Spirit or the preaching or the reading of the scriptures. I frequently have discussions with people who close the door of their mind and heart as soon as they hear some truth which they do not want to accept.

Ephesians 1:15 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints,
Eph 1:16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
Eph 1:17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:
Eph 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,
Eph 1:19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,

It is the will of God to reveal His truth to you. He wants you to understand and walk according to the truth. But He will not overpower your will and make you serve Him. God has given you the liberty and the responsibility to choose what you will believe and how you will live your life. You will be what you choose to be.

Mark 4:10 And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parable.
Mar 4:11 And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables:
Mar 4:12 That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.

There were many religious Jews who heard Jesus speak that day; but they did not understand His message. Why? Because their hearts were not honest to receive the truth which Jesus preached. Regardless of how learned you may be in the scriptures, you must remain humble and receptive to the illuminations of the Holy Spirit. It is a good thing to be corrected. We must be willing to turn away from every false way. It does not matter who taught us or how we came to believe a certain thing, if it is error, we must be willing to let it be put away from our belief.

2Peter 1:16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
2Pe 1:17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
2Pe 1:18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.
2Pe 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
2Pe 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

There have been many “cunningly devised fables.” Since the very beginning of the gospel day, men and women have preached their own private interpretation of the scriptures. We do not have the authority or privilege to design our own interpretation of the scriptures. Paul has such great confidence in the message which he preached, knowing that he received it from Jesus and the Holy Spirit, that he could boldly say: “Let him be accursed that would bring any other gospel.”

I also, can say with great confidence that the gospel which I preach to you is in agreement with the aggregate divine word of God on the subject matter of which I speak. I avoid subjects, and they be few in number, of which I am uncertain what the word of God teaches. Although I do not intend to boast, I am not a novice. For many years, I have diligently searched the scriptures to know the truth concerning the foundational doctrines of salvation.

Romans 16:25 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,
Rom 16:26 But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:

We have received the knowledge and understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit has given true ministers a revelation of the mystery of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

We understand the message of living holy, free from sin.
We understand that faith and obedience will lead each believer into a justified, sanctified and unified relationship with God and His children.
We understand that perfect love will enable a child of God to be longsuffering, patient, tender and humble with all the members of the family of God.
We understand that perfect love will also inspire a burden for lost souls and motivate a sincere effort to bring them to their Savior and Lord Jesus Christ.
We understand that although we earnestly desire their salvation, many will prefer to continue in their unbelief and blindness.

Luke 16:31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

John 12:36 While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light. These things spake Jesus, and departed, and did hide himself from them.
Joh 12:37 But though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him:
Joh 12:38 That the saying of Esaias the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spake, Lord, who hath believed our report? and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed?
Joh 12:39 Therefore they could not believe, because that Esaias said again,
Joh 12:40 He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.

Why did the Jewish leaders not believe the words of Jesus Christ? Because their hearts were evil. They were envious of Jesus' influence with the people. They were covetous of the favor of the Roman government who could help them live comfortably. They did not believe because they wanted to please the flesh instead of pleasing God. It is the same with people today.

How is it with you, my dear friend?
Is the gospel of Jesus Christ a mystery to you?
If you will seek for the truth with your whole heart, with nothing reserved, you will find the truth. God has promised to give you spiritual enlightenment. If you hold on to the false doctrines of false preachers, you will be lost forever.

Isaiah 29:18 And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity, and out of darkness.
Isa 29:19 The meek also shall increase their joy in the LORD, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel.

Isaiah 42:5 Thus saith God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein:
Isa 42:6 I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles;
Isa 42:7 To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house.
Isa 42:8 I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.

God has not changed His promise. He wants your ears to hear and your eyes to see. He wants to deliver you out of your bondage to sin. He wants to heal your soul, your mind and your body.

Revelation 10:7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.

Some people believe that this statement in Revelation 10:7 has already come to pass with the sounding of the Seventh Angel Some believe that the Seventh Angel has not yet begun to sound. We do know that it is the will of God to give His children understanding of His mysteries.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

GODLY COUNSEL

Many people are stating that they do not need to go to church to be a Christian and be acceptable with God.

We do know that God has said, “Where two are three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” Matthew 18:20
I have heard people say that every Christian can be just as filled with the Holy Ghost and have just as much wisdom and discernment as the pastor of the congregation. This thought does not agree with the clear teaching of the Bible. Let us examine the Word of God and see what it says.

Mark 3:14
And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach. And to have power to heal sickness, and to cast out devils.

It is quite obvious that Jesus did not ordain every saved person to preach and to heal the sick and cast out devils. This commission and power was only given to them whom He called and ordained. He ordained twelve. He did not ordain everybody who believed.

The word ordain means to officially make someone a minister. A minister is someone who is responsible for teaching others.

Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
Eph 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
Eph 4:13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
Eph 4:14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
Eph 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

This text teaches us that God “gave some” the gift to do these works in the church of God. He did not give everyone the same gifts and abilities.

Are you an apostle? Can you go somewhere and peach the gospel and by doing so you raise up a congregation of the church of God. This is what an apostle does.

1Co 12:28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
1Co 12:29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?
1Co 12:30 Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?

Does God give every person the same gifts and abilities? The answer is clearly “NO.” The church of God is a body and we need every member to supply that which God has given him by the Holy Spirit.

Act 9:3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:
Act 9:4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
Act 9:5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.
Act 9:6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.

Why did Jesus send Paul to Ananias to learn what he should do? Why didn't Jesus just tell Paul what to do? Does God give ministers knowledge of things that he wants the ministers to tell the people? Do saved people need a man of God to teach them greater knowledge and understanding? Do people need a pastor?

Jer 3:15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.
 
Did the people of Israel need pastors more than the church of God? According to the apostle Paul, God continues to give apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers to the congregations of the church. God has clearly chosen to work through men and women to preach the gospel to others. We need all the members of the body. The hand can not say to the foot, I have no need of thee.

Act 10:1 There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band,
Act 10:2 A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway.
Act 10:3 He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius.
Act 10:4 And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.
Act 10:5 And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter:
Act 10:6 He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner, whose house is by the sea side: he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do.

Why did God tell Cornelius to send for the apostle Peter and “he shall tell tell thee what thou oughtest to do.”? God does not want his people to be independent of each other. We must recognize that we need each other just as much as the different members of the human body need the other members.

Can you humble yourself and submit to a pastor who has the rule over you? Are you too proud to acknowledge that some other man may hear from God and be able to teach you something you need to know?

Heb 13:7 Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.

Can God place a minister over you to teach and guide you into greater light and truth? Can you humble yourself to submit to a pastor to “have the rule over you?” Pride prevents progress in righteousness.

Act 8:30 And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
Act 8:31 And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
Act 8:32 The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:
Act 8:33 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.
Act 8:34 And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?

This Ethiopian man was a very important and well educated man.
He was the Treasurer of the Queen of Ethiopia.
Yet, he needed a man of God to explain the meaning of these scriptures.
Philip was the man of God who was sent to instruct him.

What will you do when God sends a man to tell you what to do?
Just because some men have abused their authority in a congregation, does not, mean that all pastors and all authority is wrong or inappropriate.

Yes there have been, there are, and there will be ministers and pastors who get out of order and abuse the people. But, God still has true men of God who deserve your respect and trust.

If you do not trust the pastor who is over the congregation you attend, then you need to make every effort possible to resolve the disagreement and division. If after much patience and longsuffering, you are unable to be reconciled; and if you are excommunicated from the fellowship of the saints; then, you must desire to find a congregation which teaches the truth where you can be a part of a local body of believers.

Whenever there is a division, there is sin. Nothing but sin can separate us from God and from His people. Someone is guilty of disobedience to the commandments of God when division becomes a reality.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

THE PLAN OF SALVATION - STEP ONE

Have you been born again by faith in Jesus Christ?
Has the Holy Spirit convicted your heart with the guilt of your sins?
Have you been moved to repent and ask God for His forgiveness?

Repentance is the attitude and acton of a “broken and contrite heart”. The guilt of sin should cause a person to experience deep sorrow for the evil deeds he has done. This godly sorrow will cause a person to confess his sins and ask God for forgiveness. The penitent (the person who is repenting of his sins)  will ask God to give him the grace to turn away from those evil deeds and be obedient to the commandments and will of God. If there is no turning away from sin; if there is no change in the attitude of the heart; then, there is no true repentance. I know that God is faithful to send the Holy Spirit to speak to your heart and mind about your spiritual condition. Listen to the instruction the apostle Paul gave to a young minister named Titus:

Titus 2:11-14, “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.”

The same faithful Holy Spirit who spoke to my heart and helped me humble myself and repent of my sins, is the same faithful Holy Spirit who has spoken to your heart and told you that you cannot be saved and you cannot go to heaven with sinful actions and attitudes in your heart. Don’t deceive yourself and believe the lie that God loves you too much to punish you for your sins with everlasting torment in the flames of fire. God is a holy and just God. He rewards obedience and punishes rebellion and disobedience.

The apostle Peter told the people, “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out,” (Acts 3:19). This is the command to which every sinner must respond. No man can be a child of God and enter into the blessing of salvation unless he first repents and turns away from his sins. Regardless of what you may have heard some preacher say, you cannot be a sinner and be a saved person at the same time. Either you are a sinner or you are saved. Some say, “I am a sinner saved by grace. I am not perfect and I still commit sin.” My dear friend, if you believe that false statement, you have believed a lie of the devil. Listen to the scriptures and believe the word of God and let every man who speaks to the contrary be disregarded and avoided.

Galatians 5:19-21 “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.”

It would be good and beneficial to you if you dusted off your Webster’s Dictionary and studied the full meaning of each one of the words which the apostle Paul spoke to the people at Galatia. If you are guilty of doing any of these evil deeds, you “shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”

Ephesians 5:1-5, “Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savour. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.”

God has not changed. He is an eternal, unchanging God in whom there is no variableness nor shadow of turning. He is just the same today in His judgments and commandments. What God had Paul write to the Ephesians is still true today.

Galatians 6:7-9, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.”

I want to encourage you to see the value and blessing of living in harmony with God and His commandments. Sin is a destroyer. It will destroy your health, your mind and your relationships with those whom you love. The penalty for sin is greater than you can ever imagine. If you die in your sins, you cannot go where Jesus is dwelling. Hell is waiting for the sinner. Please don’t die lost.

If you will have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, you can be forgiven and made just in the sight of God. This relationship is called justification. By your repentance and obedience you have become a child of God with your name written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. You are a Christian, Christ-like, and possess the grace to say “NO” to every temptation which Satan brings to your mind. You have been made holy by the cleansing power of the sacrificial blood of Jesus Christ. He died for you so that you could have eternal life.

The Bible teaches us that “the just shall live by faith.” We do not yield to Satan’s thoughts. Thoughts are not sin. What you decide to do with those thoughts is the important matter. God allows Satan to tempt you. Temptation is not sin. Jesus was tempted in all points just like we are tempted. Jesus had grace to resist every temptation. As a child of God, you also have grace to resist every temptation. You must believe the truth of the Holy Scriptures when they testify of the victory which God is able to give to you. 1 John 4:4, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”

Just say “NO” to Satan’s temptations and keep the faith that you love God too much to turn away and go back to the sinful wickedness of your past.

1 Timothy 6:11-12, “But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.”

Jude 24-25, “Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.”

God bless you, I pray.


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