What Child is This?

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government will be upon his shoulder. And his name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” “who, being in the form of God, did not consider it something to hang onto to be equal with God, but emptied himself, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” “For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time…”
Wise men still worship him!
Scriptures are from the New King James Translation

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How to not waste your life

1 Corinthians 15:58 says to believers, “therefore…stand firm, immoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” Nearly everyone wants to believe that when their life comes to a close on this earth, they have not wasted it. I believe that the work in which we are to “keep abounding” is believing in the Lord Jesus Christ and His victory over sin and death and the promise to believers of a future resurrection and a glorious new body. As believers “abound” in believing in Christ and His promises, the fragrance of Christ and a wonderful hope is detected by others and the light that God has shone in believers’ hearts is detected by others with the result that God is glorified. And that is the definition of a life well lived, one that brings glory to God!

Why am I writing this?

As I write this, I am aware that maybe nobody will read it. After 50 posts, there have been two comments in over a year. One comment was solicited. So why am I writing this? I am expecting no response whatsoever. I am writing this because we have a website. I am writing this because maybe someone will read it. Am I writing this because God expects me to be faithful, or am I writing this out of embarrassment over not writing something. I am not sure I know. But the same God who saved me through the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the same God who has been helping me to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ through the Bible, the same God who gave to me the gift of the Holy Spirit, He knows why I am writing this article. Out of time, got to go. Blessings on you.

Thank you, God

“But we should always give thanks to God for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. It was for this He called you through our gospel, that you may gain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught, whether by word of mouth or by letter from us.”
2 Thessalonians 2:13-15 NKJV

The Main Thing

Yogi Berra is quoted as saying, “The main thing in life is to remember to keep the main thing the main thing.” I believe churches all over our country need to reexamine this question.
According to 1 Corinthians 15:3, the proclamation of the gospel is the main thing for any church which claims to follow Jesus Christ. This is confirmed also by the last command of Jesus to the church (Acts 1) which followed the great commission to the church (Matthew 28 and others) by the risen Lord Jesus. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation for all those who believe (Romans 1) and the gospel addresses man’s greatest need, to be delivered from his sins. There are many other good works the church can provide, but no church should ever put any ministry to the poor, suffering, oppressed, or any other above that of the preaching of the gospel. Jesus Christ died for our sins, was buried, was and continues to be raised, and appeared to many after his resurrection. Whosoever shall call [in faith] on the name of the Lord shall be saved!

Thinking about Racism

Race is very real. Unfortunately, so is racism. I am not sure I understand why anyone would be proud to be a particular race, after all, they had no choice in the matter. Death reigns over every race, pointing to the truth that we all are accountable to God, who gives life, and takes back the life He gives. The Bible tells me that all races have a common ancestry, and every man and woman is created in the image of God. It seems to me that racism started when man decided to turn away from the God who gave him life. Selfishness and hate and pride are deserving of punishment, but God’s love moved Him to send His Son, Jesus Christ, who bore our sins, receiving God’s just punishment for them, so that all who trust in Christ might be pardoned, and receive new life, and actually love God and his fellow men made in God’s image. A true turning back to God in Christ will result in a true concern for all humanity.

Freedom?

I still remember studying the “Freedom Monument” not far from Plymouth Plantation. It was quite a monument. The value of freedom was, I think, the stated purpose for the monument. The carvings told the story that the source of freedom was faith and the source of faith was the Scriptures. I could not help but think of the passage in the Bible teaching that the Scriptures speak of Christ. It was Christ who said, “If the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.” Too many today are in bondage to self and sin, and their lives are miserable. I understand that. One day I turned to Christ in repentance and faith, and He truly did set me free. May many more find in Him the “real” freedom they desperately seek.

Having eyes but cannot see, ears but cannot hear

The God of the Bible is infinitely glorious and good. The mankind created by this God rebelled against His goodness and glory through self serving disobedience. This tendency permeates humanity today. Deserving God’s righteous judgment, man is nevertheless invited to come to a throne of grace, made possible, incredibly, through the act of this God sending His own Son to take upon himself our sin and die as our substitute. He arose from the dead and God has exalted him as Lord of all. If this sounds incredible, it is because it is! If you are willing to “see” and “hear” and receive this gift of grace and forgiveness of sins, you will experience eternal life! If not, you will continue to make every excuse possible to not surrender your life to the One who truly loves you.

“Do not bear false witness”

I am hearing a lot these days about “all the lies” coming from people in high places. I live in “low places” and I hear a lot of lies down here as well. That is where you learn to lie, people usually don’t wait til they “hit it big” to begin lying. They have made a habit of it already. So before we get down on those who are lying who live in “high places,” let us be sure we are not lying to our parents and spouses and children, our teachers and bosses and all others to whom we are accountable, and our friends and neighbors. Oh, and let us be sure we are also not lying to ourselves and God, who alone knows the truth and will one day bring everything out into the light.

Remembering

The Old Testament has many “memorials” erected by man to cause future generations to not forget the significant acts of God on behalf of men. It is a good thing, too, to remember the sacrifices of men and women for the sake of their fellow men and future generations. This Memorial day, when you remember what others have done from which you have benefited, don’t forget to remember the kindness and goodness of God, who not only graciously gives and sustains your life, but gave His Son, Jesus Christ, to be your sin-bearer upon whom God’s righteous wrath was poured, so that God could be just, and the justifier of ungodly sinners who place their faith only and completely in the work of Christ for their salvation from sin. God has erected a memorial so we can easily remember what He has done for us, and that memorial is the universe! The next time you marvel at the ocean, or a star-lit night, or the mountains, or study ants, bees, or any of God’s marvelous creatures, remember that God is worthy of our praise and thanks.