GOD’S RULES FOR INTERPRETATION OF SCRIPTURE!

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THE PURE, UNPOLLUTED GOSPEL MESSAGE QUIZ

Many people in our Churches are dissatisfied or stagnent in their lives and faith. Why? I propose it to be totally related to the following matters which I will address, except carving out those who are only ‘religious’ and not born again ones. But for those who are truly born again and know Jesus Christ as Lord I want to share with you some of the more major reasons for our problems.

Lets begin with a Gospel Quiz. I will ask several questions and all one needs to do is respond by a yes or no answer.

FOCUS: In Acts 17:11, we read words given to Paul the Apostle by God the Holy Spirit regarding how individuals must approach the scriptures and messages given by others. It reads, “Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.”

This article is certainly not going to be a exhaustive writing on textual criticism but rather a very short word on some important aspects of proper Biblical interpretation and understanding of the scriptures to keep one from falling into traps and knotty problems which seem to bring about nothing but divisions and even heresy and ultimately apostasy if one is not careful.

First and foremost one has to believe that the scriptures are the very inspired, holy, sacred, total complete words from God Himself and not humanly developed. Either God gave these words to certain writers He chose, or they are a fabricated storehouse of man made fairy tales with no authority at all. In fact, if these are not God breathed words, we are wasting our time and are still in our sins and do not know the creator God at all.

But proof is in the pudding they say. God’s word can be confirmed as true and absolute, and that it changes the lives of human beings dramatically, and also the miracles and events were and are real that it speaks about. Enough proof exists down through history one cannot get around it all successfully. One can deny and hate the word of God, but that doesn’t change it at all!

Now let’s look at a few items which are usually not handled or brought forth when we exercise ourselves in the reading and study of God’s words.

I will just list a few major items to consider which usually are left on the table or not even thought of by anyone when they read the scriptures, even left out of the equation by Ministers, Professors, Teachers and the average saint in the body of Christ.

The following if not considered and understood will bring about a totally wrong final comprehension of what the Bible actually teaches and what God wants us to know:

  1. Understanding the meaning of the term Israel.
    1. An improper understanding of this term will create a totally wrong view of God’s Gospel message, in terms of who are the saved people and the ones composing the body of Christ. Also, not understanding this term and who and what is being identified by that term in context will introduce all types of concepts now regarded by Systematic Theological views which are purported to be proper Bible Doctrine.
    2. Identification of what is hidden behind the term Israel is the key to proper comprehension of God’s Covenants and the entire doctrine of regeneration and also the doctrine of End Times.
    3. In fact, if one does not know the following meaning of the words I will give they WILL NOT properly interpret the Bible narrative.
    4. The term Israel is usually totally identified by most of us as the name given to Jacob and it became the name tagged onto the Jews and their various tribes. This is of course correct, however there is more behind this term than just a person or tribe of people.
    5. A study of the term by Hebrew scholars will come up with this concept or meaning of the term: “He has become a Receptacle in which God can be received and retained.” In other words, the basic word points toward a Person who is known by terms which John the Apostle wrote in John 1. “In the beginning was the Word and the Word became Flesh and dwelled among us.” In other words, Israel is the ONE SEED promised who has Eternal Life and is our Savior namely Jesus! All things point to and end up with Jesus the Son of God the God/man!
    6. Now let’s think about a very important thought we must keep in mind we are speaking, or teaching or preaching the word of God to to others, and specifically, when we are considering the SEED of Abraham. From Abraham of course we see the development of the usage of the term Israel and also the term SEED singular which is so important to unpack (seed singular not plural)!
    7. There are 4 Distinct Seeds mentioned in the Bible which if we do not understand their distinctive meanings we will end up misinterpreting the Covenant of grace, and also the Doctrine of Last Things and even who the Church or body of Christ consists of!
    8. Here are the four seeds of Abraham described and when you come to the Bible you must determine which seed is being spoken about, for making it just a normal usage of one word and one concept of such, will throw you off totally in proper Biblical revelation. Here are the seeds:
      1. Natural seed: Includes all physical children of Isaac and Ishmael, jacob and Esau, Jews and Arabs.
      2. Special Natural Seed: The nation, or children, of Israel, all of the physical seed of Jacob and his twelve sons.
      3. Spiritual seed: All believers of all ages, David and Paul, Jewish and Gentile believers, you and me.
      4. Unique Seed: Christ the Messiah and King!

I would recommend the book (small) easy reading: Abraham’s Four Seeds by John G. Reisinger available over most book outlets for your study on this and read the book over and over to you really get it. I have read it perhaps 10 times already. One can’t in any way get away from the truth and facts presented. In fact, this entire subject would destroy most denominational setups and bring the body of Christ together that is how important it is. It destroys Presbyterian Covenant theology, Dispensationalism which is held by most today even thought it was a newby on the block and came about some 1800 years after Christ on the doctrine of Last or End Times.

Understanding the Seeds will also prove beyond a shadow of a doubt the word of God places all Jews and Gentiles that God calls and saves into ONE body and there is NO future Temple built with sacrifices established anymore, and destroys any idea the local REAL body of Christ is seperate from the Israel of God but is the Israel of God itself because we are in the Israel of God (Real SEED singular) Christ!

Hope this creates some desires to study the word of God more carefully. Blessings to all!

GOD REPLACEMENTS! THEY NEVER WORK!

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All of us seek to look for life fulfillment where it will never be found. But that temptation haunts us every day of our lives. We major on horizontal focus rather than on vertical most of the time and we even ask creation to be our Savior and through it find fulfillment. But that is another illusion.

I think Paul David Tripp has it down very clearly the way we do such things. Notice his list, which of course is not exhaustive, but illustrates my point:

  1. We attach our identity to the respect of another.
  2. We draw too much of our sense of well-being from our physical appearance.
  3. We think material possessions have the power to make us happy.
  4. We attach our meaning and purpose to our achievements.
  5. We ask our jobs to make us content.
  6. We try to base our identity on our children.
  7. We attach our sense of spiritual well-being to the “perfect” church.
  8. We base our identity on our education.
  9. We ask our spouses to make us happy.
  10. We look to food and drink to satisfy and calm us.
  11. We continually say, “If only I had _________, then my life would be ______.
  12. We attach our identity to the luxury of our cars, or the affluence of our neighborhoods.

All of those things are not evil or wrong, but rather God has designed them to POINT us toward Him rather than to the creation itself. He is the ONLY ONE who can provide us with Life and that more abundantly. Signs are to point you to something else besides the sign.

So, all good things such as situations, locations, possessions, relationships, achievements, and creation which is beautiful, are blesings given by God alone, for those things can never give you what you need. Note John 14:6:

I AM the way, the truth and the life”, Jesus said. So, we need to stop searching when the needs is already here and we need to look for it no where else for it isn’t there. Read also Psalm 115.

As we live today especially considering those of us in the United States of America, we are finding that there are many of our foundational values in our culture are falling apart. We are at a crossroad which if certain things do not happen today (January 6, 2021), our nation will become another Marxist Socialist nation politically speaking, and that means, all of the values, morals and ethics we previously held will disappear.

As a Christ follower and ones who know Him as Savior and Lord, we also know that no political system or person in politics is our Savior. Government of any type will not suffice and supply to our hearts that which we long for at all. They are powerless in that field for they are products of this world system.

Having stated that, God does use people and help them develop systems in the Governmental affairs which are Godly and moral. Not being perfect, our nations policies and Constitutional Government based upon a Republic rather than a Democracy is a better form of Government for the people than any that exists on planet earth today. Yet, the enemies of morality and God and Christ, have been working hard over the last 100 years in the USA to tear down this Republic. Marxist educators had infiltrated the schools and taught their dogma slowly but surely to students for several generations.

I contend that the results of the voting that takes place this very day reflects that they have made great advancements in brainwashing the people of America to accept and go along with Marxism to a great degree. However, the majority of people living here still uphold a lot of the principles that are taught in our Constitution and Bill of Rights, but the controlling people in places of Government are the children of the Marxist Educators and their influence is now beginning to flesh out more strongly as we see full blown Marxist elected to offices.

Georgia for instance elected a Marxist black licensed minister of a so called Baptist? church to be in the Senate of the USA! That speaks real bad on two fronts: 1. A Baptist and Christian would NEVER endorse what this man endorses. 2. The Constitution and Bill of Rights which he will swear to uphold stand totally against what this man believes. We are now more in danger as a people in losing our precious freedoms and move closer to being under a dictatorial slave type leadership in our Government. More on the order of Russia, China, Iran or other type non freedom governments.

I argue that what is taking place is ordained by God Himself, and is NO accident, and NO chance happening. It is orchestrated totally by God alone! If God allows the evil spirit of Satan and his demons to control the spirits of those in the USA to vote wrongly and against good sound judgment etc., then God has some strong High purposes He is putting into place which can be found spoken about in the scriptures regarding the Last Days.

Some points God has shared with us concerning the last days are: 1. The world will seek to unite as one and be under the control of people who preach and establish a one world type government which is led by anti-Christ type people, and eventually One special Anti-Christ person and a False Religious leader Anti-Christ individual. Note the black so called Baptist Christian in Georgia who is a Marxist and could in now way Biblically be considered a Christian is a case in point! He is a type of what God speaks of as the False Prophet in the last day when Christ comes back and brings judgment upon this world.

The USA was one of the last nations on earth to have such a Republic which endorses Christian ethics and morals and freedoms as we have them. So the ONE world Religion and One world Political system is growing stronger as I write this article.

I sense that the Judge (God our Christ Jesus) is at the door! He perhaps is standing up from His seat at the Throne of the Father and preparing to come back and execute Divine judgment upon the people of this earth and its leaders. He will cown down and literally burn up and crush all of the wicked people and Satan and his demons for sure, casting them into hell and then makes a totally new earth and heaven where dwells only good and righteousness, being our King and Lord over all of His people who will be with Him.

These proud, arrogant, lying, self promoted leaders who think they are something, should be trembling in their shoes rather than being delighted they won a political race. Our God is a consuming fire and their sinful souls and unbelief will send them right into the pit of hell fire and damnation.

It is sad, but I pray, for God to grant mercy and grace to all and bring about a great spiritual revival and bring many of these to repentance and faith in Christ Jesus who is the only ONE who can save, the Only one who can provide peace, security, joy, satisfaction, stability and complete contentment to any living soul! Cry out to Him for mercy and pray for His saving grace in Christ Jesus escaping the wrath of God to come!!


ENEMIES OF REAL WORSHIP!

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C.S. Lewis stated; “If there lurks in most modern minds the notion that to desire our own good and earnestly to hope for the enjoyment of it is a bad thing, I submit that this notion has crept in from Kant and the Stoics and is no part of the Christian faith. …..it would seem to many that our Lord finds our desires, not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

“That’s it! The enemy of Worship is not that our desire for pleasure is too strong, but too weak! We have settled for a home, a family, a few friends, a job, a television, a microwave oven, an occasional night out, a yearly vacation and perhaps a new laptop. We have accustomed ourselves to such meager, short-lived pleasures that our capacity for joy has shriveled. And so our worship has shriveled. Many can scarcely imagine what is meant by “a holiday at the sea” — worshipping the living God.Through long drinking at the broken cistern of mud-pie pleasures, many have lost almost all capacity for delighting in God “by John Piper in Desiring God page 99.

Let all of us repent and turn from such sin, and begin to worship by dancing, singing, praising, playing loud all types of musical instruments, shouting, engaging others with great happiness and praise to our Lord Jesus, and be “real” true worshippers. Let there be a Jubilee! Christ Jesus said God desires all of us to worship Him in spirit and in truth. Our spirit anchored in the word of truth the scriptures is absolutely essential. We do not enter into worship like it is ‘air’ and ’empty’ of doctrine and theology, but rather, with such for in doing so we find true worship exists for it is not only our ‘spirit’ but also with ‘truth”! Lack of scripture understanding and engagement produces or makes it dangerous as we enter into such worship, that the engagement will end up only on the outward demonstration and not reach God or Christ at all. Great care must exist in that we are to be in the word of God daily seeking Him and Loving Him to have true worship.

I shall never forget a gentlemen who has now passed away – a friend of mine, who was offended in the services we attended when someone raised their hands and praised the Lord. Of course, he would never do such a terrible thing as praising God with hands lifted and would never utter Amen out loud for that would be beneath his dignity and he would call it irreverence. However, today, I am absolutely 100% sure that God has corrected all of that and if he could come back he would be dancing in the aisle when songs of praise went up for Jesus!!!

Where are you in your worship? Do you throw it to the wind those inbred desires that wish to be unleashed as you would really like to do in the presence of Jesus and others? Or do you wish to turn from such unbiblical deadness and stop quenching the Holy Spirit and really begin to worship God in more ways than one!

Most folks think that worship stops when it moves from hearing the word of God, and singing a few hymns or praise songs. However, we must have our feelings, our emotions, our desires expressing how much we really do love Jesus and our Lord. To do otherwise is to deny what God has and can give us in this life today, worshipping HIM in spirit and in truth.

Check out David the chosen King of Israel, and what the Holy Spirit directed him to write in Psalm 150. Go thou and do likewise!!!How dare anyone deny or contradict the word of God and what He says to the saints about worship!!

People enjoy worship sport games, entertainment, and other various and different platforms of life, but when it comes to God and Jesus they wish to remain silent and keep in the background when if really saved and KNOW HIM, HE is calling us out of our shell of complacency and self-righteous pious attitudes, to enjoy Him and let it be seen with our very total being.

If you have the LIGHT of the world in you, do not put it under a Covering where no one can see it. For if we truly have Jesus in our hearts HE needs to be seen in our total conduct and our total humanity, expressing to the world that HE is in us!

Oh, yes, I know, you worry about others who are doing such and they are way off base doctrinally, or perhaps even living lives which are suspect, but who has called us to be a judge of others anyway, when we don’t know for one moment about what is going on in the hearts of others. Be careful, and not throw stones at others when we may have Stoney hearts that will not budge a inch for Jesus in exhilarating outward expressions of our emotions and feelings, which come from a heart and mind and soul of those who enjoy God and seek to please Him forever.

THE GREAT PRETENDER!

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FUN OR FOLLY! THE KINGDOM OF SELF AND THE COSTUME KINGDOM!

SPOTLIGHT:

As Christians, we must be aware of how the kingdom of self is a costume kingdom. Sin is so deceitful it does a amazing job of masquerading as the kingdom of God and our activities as good and godly.

GOING DEEPER:

Spiritual fakery is a major work and tool of God’s enemy and our enemy Satan. It produces spiritual blindness. It can be so insidious that we think it is just fine and we are not the least bothered by it.

Matthew 7:15

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”

These words of Christ show us that sin and the Devil enjoy looking like and pretending to be something they are not. In another place, we are told that Satan goes around pretending and posing to be an angel of light.

So, the kingdom of sin and self centeredness is a costume kingdom. All of this brings deep down inside spiritual confusion. So many times we think we are engaging in service to God or worshipping Him, when we are actually giving worship and service to some aspect of the creation, even including our own self who we make an idol. Idolatry is so common but yet so covered with the costume of fun and frivolity we can’t see for it blinds us.

In fact, this masquerading idol we allow to control us, has no power at all to deliver to our hungry hearts what Jesus our Lord alone can give to us. We desperately need God to give us insight about this and free us from our bondage to the little costume kingdom we have invented through sins deceptiveness.

Some examples of things that are really sinful idols but appear to fine are:

  1. Focus on material things, but we pretend it is good stewardship.
  2. Control, but we pretend it is a gift of God being exercised.
  3. Anger, many times is just plain I didn’t get my way.
  4. Self Righteousness Legalism, but we pretend it is a love for God’s law.
  5. Think we are building God’s kingdom, but all the while it is our own power and abilities rather than God.
  6. Fear of man, but all the while we think or pretend we are helping someone in need.
  7. Selfish attention seeking but all the while we pretend it is about open real needs we have.
  8. Judgmentalism and Criticism can pose as being devoted to honesty.
  9. Theological pride can be thought of by us as devoted to God’s word and truth.
  10. Lust can pretend it is just considering something beautiful in creation.
  11. Gossip is a real bad one for we pretend we are prayerfully considering others and their needs.

BOTTOM LINE:

Let us cast off these sinful fruits, and take off our masks and quit pretending but rather, confessing and forsaking such things and walk with God in the Spirit mortifying the deeds of the flesh.

THINK ABOUT THAT TODAY! LET US QUIT CLOWNING AROUND AND BE THE REAL THING IN CHRIST JESUS! SELAH!

Article written by Lamar Carnes with help from Paul David Tripp and his meditations!

ARE THESE THE LAST DAYS AND THE COMING OF CHRIST BACK TO EARTH?

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Announcement:

Over the history of the assemblies of the Lord Jesus, called the body of Christ on earth, the people of God have been looking for the promised return of the Lord Jesus Christ who is the Creator and Sustainer of all things that exist! Will HE be coming soon? What are the ways or even the promises made by Christ that He will return? This article will touch on a few items about all of this.

SPOTLIGHT:

The entire Bible has as its subject the person Christ Jesus the King, the Lord, the God/man, the Commander in Chief of Heavens Armies who was promised to come and be the Messiah or Savior of His people, the High Priest interceding for His people forever, the King who will rule and reign over them and the entire creation forever, and also, that He would come back down to planet earth in the same manner they had seen Him ascend back to heaven in the clouds!

Do the signs of the times speak about His soon return?

Is there anything preventing His return even today?

Since the Bible spoke of His very soon return to the people living during His period of time right before He left earth, was He wrong since He hasn’t come back for some 2000 plus years, or have we interpreted His words incorrectly?

UNPACKING BIBLICAL TEACHINGS ON HIS COMINGS AFTER HE LEFT PLANET EARTH!

SOME POINTS TO REMEMBER:

In Matthews Gospel and also the other Gospels we find words concerning how Jesus stated He would come back to ‘that generation’ of people living whom He was speaking to at that very moment. In fact, He stated that His next coming the judgment of Christ would be exercised upon them all including judgment for all of their killings of the prophets of God in time past, that is, they (the current generation) would have God’s punishment placed upon them due to their past fathers murdering God’s servants, etc.!

Also, moving into the Epistles of Paul and of Peter, including Revelation by the Apostle John, we find that Jesus was to come back real soon! So did He? Did He keep that promise?

Yes, He did! He came back in 70 AD and even the few years prior He began a work of Judgment upon the Jewish unbelievers and the nation. It was finalized in 70 AD. Christ came down into the area of the world where Jerusalem was and its Jewish inhabitants and the part of the Roman world which controlled that area. Christ, with His Holy Angels, came back in judgment which was so terrible, absolutely unheard of strikes which caused many signs and wonders upon the area of a magnitude never before seen in such a manner.

Jewish people killing each other, family members slaughtering each other, the Romans killing them also, and being killed along with them in warfare. Blood flowed so heavily around the area it really was a land deep with blood all over the place. One needs to read the historian Josephus, a Jew who was considered one of the honest and dependable writers and person of the day, who wrote about all he could find and what he observed during this time. He even reports signs and wonders in the sky above, actual appearances of heavenly beings appearing to be in a warlike activity, not to speak of other miracles and signs that took place. Christ follower were warned ahead of time so they could flee from the area and escape the judgment that was to come and they did. So, Christ did come back as He promised but in judgment. However, there is still another coming which was promised and it has not taken place yet. That is the final last day of last days! That I would like to address in order to examine what scripture gives us about that time and what is going on prior to this last Coming of Christ.

THE LAST COMING OF CHRIST IS NEAR!

Much is written in the O.T. and N.T. about the last and final coming of Christ to planet earth. As you can see from what was shown in this article this would be the 3rd coming of Christ back to earth. There are many different matters which must take place prior to this event.

For instance, through out Pauls epistles, he gives us much information about the times and events going on prior to His last coming. Such things as people conducting their affairs as usual, but also, wars, rumors of wars, and conflicts and people filled with many sinful activities of life.

I direct you to the epistles of Thessalonians, Timothy, and even Peter in his epistles and Jude.

Paul speaks to Timothy in 2 Timothy chapters 3 and 4 (please read), that people generally will engaged in so many sinful activities the list is long. Selfish, conflicts, slander, hate, chaos, terrorism, sexual perversions, no love for others, haters of God and Christ, haters of the Lords people, persecutions, lying, murder, rape, etc., etc.! Plus we find out also in the epistles that there has to be a work of Satan whereby he raises up the Anti Christ (a single person), along with a False Prophet, and they will be working to deceive people who are living on this planet. It will be not only going on in the USA, but the entire world system of nations.

We must remember there are only two types of people living on this earth. One group is a group who is in the family of Satan and demons. They hate God, morality, Christ, and God’s chosen people. They also hate each other. The second group are those who are God’s and Christ’s chosen elect ones who follow Christ Jesus as King and Lord. People will have in their very families many times this mixed multitude and it is hard for parents or even children to realize that some of their own immediate family members may be like this, but it is very clear and the truth. Today, people do not wish to entertain the fact that Satan has human beings in his family and kingdom! But denial of or just not wanting to think about it doesn’t change the fact as it really is! So these two evil personages will come on the scene before Christ comes back and they will be working many miracles and deceptive things seeking to make a one world Government and a one world religious body, persecution and killing Christ and God followers and worshipping idols and even ONE person who claims to be God.

THE CURRENT AFFAIRS IN THE USA!

Presently, we find big signs that things like I mentioned above are taking place in our very country right now. The burning of buildings and properties, the burning of police cars and demanding we get rid of police departments so crime can continue without interruption and no accountability, the hate and the slander and the lies such as you see taking place against our President Trump has now gone on for almost 4 years.

Hate, persecution of the Churches and Ministers and members is going on stronger today than it ever has been in the USA! Governors and Mayors are persecuting the Lord’s people and forbidding worship and seeking to harm the body of Christ. These God haters keep executing their rules of evil over Christians and even Jews now breaking every law and rule our nation has against such actions.

I would argue that these are signs of the coming of the Last Day of Days upon this planet earth. God may bring a revival or an awakening to certain nations or peoples, but He also may bring the final Day of Judgment. We do not yet know which way it will go, but we know HE will certainly bring judgment or spiritual awakenings one or the other for sure.

In closing, I would like to encourage God’s people to remember these things:

Psalm 32:8 shows God’s promise to us, and reads, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.”

So, to each of you saints of God, let us remember we are just as immortal as God is now because WE ARE IN HIM AND HE IS IN US! Nothing can happen to us unless God allows it to happen. We can’t change it for one minute. Even if we pray about a certain matter to change, God is still in charge and if He says yes and is positive about it to us, that was meant and decided to have been so before the world was even created because He had planned it that way.

What does this mean then? It means you can go forward in Faith, trusting in Him as you go and move through life and its events knowing that NOTHING will happen to you that God has not ordained to happen to you! So go forth doing what you do walking by faith, being joyful, happy, delighted in God, and Christ, dancing, singing, shouting, praising, playing instruments of music, witnessing, living for Jesus and fighting the good fight of faith and the enemies of the God also with the Word of God, rather than weapons of warfare of this world. That means we pay close attention to Ephesians 6. And also, 2 Timothy 3 and 4. Remember also God told us to not fear man, but fear Him! We don’t have to fear the possibility of thousands of terrorists for God will kill everyone of them before they harm us if that is in His will. We also will not get the Flu, a Virus, a plague ever unless God has ordained we have such. So go in faith and do not worry. Do not test HIM and be reckless, but do what is right and you will be just fine on God’s good green earth until He comes or we go to be with Him prior to that time. Remember HE is life eternal and we shall never die but live forever either here on planet earth and the translation or we go to Him ahead of that time and be clothed with a spiritual body until the resurrection. In any case we will be with HIM! Amen!

The Journey Begins

GRACE WORXS

Thanks for joining me!

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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Where will we find an anchor and a hiding place as we go through life’s journey?

Life is filled with many mysteries!

There are things we just can’t figure out!

In fact, we simply aren’t able to understand and make sense of our life here on planet earth! Working to figure things out will only frustrate us and we will never find inner peace and rest. We can work day and night to figure it all out and end up exhausted.

Peace and rest is only found in the wisdom and grace of the ONE who has it all figured out and rules it all for His glory and our good.

We must trust God our Father, our Creator, and our Lord! And we can only come to the Father through the Lord…

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THE WORLD (KOSMOS)! WHAT IS IT OR WHO ARE THEY?

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SPOTLIGHT:

On a casual usage of the term world, most consider it to be a term describing either the planet earth, or the population of humans upon the earth and all other aspects of this worlds system. But in this article I will seek to argue scripturally that the term “world” a translation from the Greek term Kosmos, has to be interpreted according to how God uses the term in Holy scripture by focusing on the context and subject matter being spoken of by God!

Setting aside habits, traditions, bias, or perhaps just our very loose way of using our English language in a more neutral manner is hard to do many times. But it must be done. Usage of our English grammar along with the actual meaning of a term in Greek is a essential procedure in getting the right thought, doctrine and theological meaning of a portion of scripture one is studying.

To study this appropriately we need to find a portion of the word of God which will be very helpful in showing how one can be easily influenced away from Biblical teachings using just a normal thought process we all have as we use the English term World! Let’s examine the term in the Bible which is found in John 3:16. Most of us are familiar with that verse of scripture and have heard certain explanations since childhood which usually stays with us into our adult age. It reads:

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.”

As we look at and consider the term ‘world’, we must remember that the term “Kosmos” (world) is NOT used with a uniform significance in the New Testament. It is used in quite a few different ways. I will give a few examples to show this:

  1. Kosmos is used of the Universe as a whole. – Acts 17:24 – “God that made the world and all things therein seeing that He is Lord of heaven and earth.”
  2. Kosmos is used of the earth. – John 13:1; Ephesians 1:4, etc.! “When Jesus knew that His hour was come that He should depart OUT OF THIS WORLD unto the Father, having loved His own which were in the world He loved them unto the end.” —- Depart out of this world signifies THIS EARTH. Also: “According as He has chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world.” – Signifies before the earth was created – compare Job 38:4.
  3. Kosmos is used of the world-system. John 12:31,’Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the Prince of this world be cast out — compare Matt. 4:8 and 1 John 5:19.
  4. Kosmos is used of the WHOLE HUMAN RACE. Romans 3: 19 – “Now we know that what things the law says, it says to them who are under the law: that EVERY mouth may be stopped and ALL THE WORLD may become guilty before God.”
  5. Kosmos is used of Humanity MINUS BELIEVERS: John 15:18 and Romans 3:6. “If the WORLD hate you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.” – Believers do not HATE Christ, so that “the world” here must signify the world of Un-Believers in contrast from believers who love Christ. Also, note: “God forbid: for then how shall God JUDGE the WORLD.” Here is another passage where “the world” CANNOT mean “you, me, and everybody.” For Believers WILL NOT be Judged by God – See John 5:24. So this is the world of unbelievers HE is speaking about.
  6. KOSMOS is used of Gentiles in Contrast from Jews: Romans 11:12, reads, “Now if the fall of them (Israel) be the Riches of the World, and the diminishing of them (Israel) the Riches of the Gentiles; how much more their (Israels) fulness.” Note: The first clause is DEFINED by the latter clause. Here, again, “the world” cannot signify all humanity for it EXCLUDES Israel.
  7. Kosmos is used of believers ONLY: John 1:29; 3:16, 17, 6:33; 12:47; 1 Cor. 4:9; 2 Cor. 5:19. I leave these verses for you to turn to and see what they say. Be careful and note exactly WHAT IS SAID AND PREDICATED OF ‘THE WORLD’ IN EACH PLACE.

So it is seen that Kosmos has at least 7 clear defined different meanings in the N.T.! So study of context, noting also what is predicated of the world in each passage, and note this, as one studies all scripture on any or all words!

TAKEAWAY:

The principle subject of John 3:16 is Christ as the Gift of God. The first clause tells us WHAT moved God to GIVE His only begotten Son. That was HIS great LOVE. The second clause informs us FOR WHOM GOD GAVE HIS SON, and that is for WHOEVER or better EVERY ONE who believes. While the last clause makes known WHY God gave His Son (His purpose), and that is, that EVERYONE that believes should not perish but have everlasting life.”

This verse has to do with God’s world of believers or God’s elect ones. In contrast to “the world of the ungodly unbelievers” – 2 Peter 2:5.

In 1 Peter 1:1, Peter is writing this letter to a particular people. It states “……I am writing to God’s CHOSEN PEOPLE….”. Note verse 2: “God the Father…..Knew you and chose you long ago, and HIS Spirit has MADE you Holy.

Verse 21, states, “……through Christ YOU have COME TO TRUST in God, it is because of Christ we have come to trust and then obedience takes place not because of us! Because of HIM and HIS work, i.e., His calling, drawing, opening up our eyes, heart, ears and spiritual abilities to engage in calling upon Him, repenting, having faith in Him, and walking with Him. In other words the NEW BIRTH HAD TO TAKE PLACE BEFORE ANY OF THE OTHER TAKES PLACE. A NEW ABILITY HAD TO BE GIVEN TO A LOST SIN BOUND PERSON AND ONE WHO LIVES IN DARKNESS AND UNDER THE CHAINS OF SATAN’S BONDAGE.

BOTTOM TAKE OUT LINE:

Christ Jesus was sent into the world (all meanings here because He came to the earth, lived in the world system, presented Himself to pagans and people of faith, etc.!) Scripture reveals to us HE came to LIVE a holy, sacred, righteous life without sin, and to be taken and killed on a Cross by the pagan unbelieving world of humans both Jews and Gentiles, and shed His blood on that Cross actually paying the penalty for HIS PEOPLE’S SINS, ACTUALLY ATONING FOR THEIR SINS AND NO ONE ELSE’S!

POINT: No one else’s because if It were for all people then ALL people would be saved and forgiven for all of their sins the biggest one being UNBELIEF! But, we know the Bible doesn’t teach that at all. People do go to hell, and people do not believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and have to pay for their own sin and punishment in hell and eventually the lake of fire. So, the Atonement was for the Lost Sheep, some were alive and followers at that moment, others had passed away in history past, and others in the future who will be saved and forgiven are included in this work of blood shedding and death on the Cross.

Also, Christ arose. If he had not risen from the dead we would all still be in our sins and nothing we are teaching and saying has any value ever. He arose, and now HE is seated at the Right Hand of God the Father making intercession for each of HIS SHEEP on a 24/7 basis throughout the rest of history. He also sent back the Holy Spirit to take His place in the actual body of the believers revealing and guiding them in their faith. Now, we are looking for His return to complete the following: Resurrect our bodies from the grave (all who have passed away), translate Christians into a new spiritual body if He comes in the air and we are still here, and then glorify all of us. Also, He will burn up the heavens above us and the earth beneath us and make it all new without any curse, sin, or evil or decay. Also, a New City will come down from heaven prepared for us in order for us to Live with HIM on planet earth which has been restored to perfection along with us. That is our hope today!! Maranatha!!

P.S. A thorough study of the teachings of scripture on Complete Depravity of the human from conception due to Adam’s fall in the garden of Eden is an essential doctrine that goes along with the teaching of this article due to its implications on ‘all’ humanity. Also, a study of the Definite Atonement made by Christ for HIS people is essential! Complete depravity does not mean a human being engages in the full extent the fallen nature and its fruits of sin, but it does mean people are as bad off as they could possible be until Jesus Christ saves them. Definite atonement does mean that Christ and His blood shedding and Cross work was not done with “hoping’ someone may be saved or with the idea that one could decide and make a personal choice to take it or leave it, as if it was a product on a market shelf. It does mean the blood did do what it was shed to do and His payment was made for actual sin and sins of HIS people and they WILL be forgiven and set free from the wrath and punishment they deserve. The Blood work did its work for His people and that is definite and cannot be otherwise. What God does He does perfectly and without any error and also without making happen what He desired it to accomplish.


WHO IS IN CHARGE OF YOUR SALVATION?

I have been a Christian over 60 years. I have seen it all and I see an endemic problem that captures the mind and hearts of people, whether lost or professing believers. What is that? It is the idea that humans have the ability to rise up out of our jail cell, the home of our fallen nature, and defy the head of our family Satan, when we are lost and without Christ and God!

To even think we can by our own power and abilities rise up and shake off the power of Satan over us and make God save us is astounding, especially since the Word of God states otherwise.

An illustration which hopefully can create what the Bible teaches about the status of a human being from conception is as follows:

Human beings since the fall of Adam and Eve, are conceived in sin. That means they are as bad off spiritually as they can be, even though they may not act out in the worst way possible for being in such a state because God in HIS grace keeps them back from being as bad as they can be. Think of it this way; a person who is lost is NOT like a person floating on the water about to sink and drown and all we have to do is throw them a rope of hope so they can save their life. This is NOT a good illustration at all but in fact, an absolute false illustration of ones spiritual reality as a sinner on this earth. What would be more correct would be this: a person lost and without Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior, is not floating on a sea of water and drowning, but rather, he or she is on the bottom of the sea or lake, dead, drowned, not alive at all. They are bound by sin, controlled by sin, in darkness, separated from God and spiritually dead, in the family of Satan, and locked in chains and bondage in his jailhouse and doing his bidding! That is where people are until the Commander in Chief of Heaven’s Armies comes and rescues them!

The facts are that God in the Garden of Eden told Adam that if they ate of the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil they would die! They did. They died spiritually, meaning God was no longer their God and Lord and Master and they fell into darkness, the bondage of sin and Satan and immediately became members of Satan’s kingdom.

Immediately, they became cognizant of their sin, and God became someone whom they feared and sought to hide from. As we think on that scene, we see Adam and Eve hiding, recognizing something was wrong. They knew they were naked and they felt shame, and so worked hard to escape and hide from God, because they could “hear” God walking in the Garden.

Man today, knows there is a power above, but will not come toward Him, but rather, seeks to hide from Him and do his own thing which is to continue in sin and let Satan lead him. God states so clearly through the prophets and also through the Apostle Paul, that “No man seeks after God” (Romans 3:11; Psalm 14:1-3). That is a fact period! God said it so it is! No man seeks God!

Humans, consist of a soul/spirit and heart (innermost being of mankind) and a mind. Man has desires, wants, and, lusts as part of their DNA. Adam and Eve desires were holy and right until they sinned in the Garden of Eden and those good desires and wants and wishes turned into sinful desires and wants and wishes. Man’s entire being was corrupted by sin. We call it depravity and that depravity was total and not partial.

So, the above brings us to a discussion of the human will. I acknowledge this is a hot topic. But, it really is so simple if we put aside our emotions and think logically. What comes first? I contend our desires, our wants, our wishes, our lusts are the dictators which motivate the “will” to function, in order to carry out our desire, wants, and wishes. So, whatever our nature asks for our “will” will carry it out. Unbelievers act out of their sinful nature. They do nothing for the glory of God. The only things that may restrain them are their conscience, fears, culture, or the consequences of sin. So, those things control their will. For the believer, from the moment of salvation God starts changing our want tos and our desires through the Holy Spirit and the word of God. So, when temptations and sin rises up in us we call on the Spirit to give us strength to resist.

In other words, the will of man is NOT free and in control. It is our human desires that control our wills. The will obeys our desires, which can be good or bad. They can be holy or sinful. The strongest desire will control our will. It is not the other way around. The will doesn’t sit back and search out what it wants to do and then act, but rather, it is in bondage to whatever is the strongest thing that is presented to it. It will be either God’s will or the power of the flesh and sin. Our sinful nature is always seeking to express itself, but through the power of Christ within us we overcome it. That is why Martin Luther stated, “The Will is in bondage” for it is bound either by the power of the flesh and sin or by the power of the word of God.

Also, the word teaches that Spiritual truths cannot be understood by an unbeliever. If they should read the word of God, they cannot understand the spiritual meaning of it. Without the Holy Spirit in them they cannot be taught Biblical truths and facts and understand them. It is all foolishness and something strange to them.

So, how does a person become a Christ follower and be saved from the wrath and judgment of God? What has to take place? Who starts the process and makes it happen? Is it the person who lives in bondage to sin? Is it the person who lives in darkness with no spiritual understanding? Is it the man or woman who figures it all out and knows how to be saved by doing some human work, like walking an aisle, raising your hand, signing a card? Is it the person “making” God come down to him and save him and forgive him of his sins?

God says NO! No man seeks after God. That is what God says!

So, how does it come about? Romans 9 and many other places throughout the Word tell us that GOD HIMSELF GRANTS MAN FORGIVENESS AND REPENTANCE AND FAITH. Faith comes through God bringing His word, the Gospel, to a person, which then produces the New Birth. That is, LIFE is given to the DEAD soul and spirit of a person. Then, due to God’s First Cause work of the New Birth, that person is enabled to choose Christ, call on Christ, believe and trust in Christ, repent of his or her sins, and ask forgiveness, and submit and worship Christ. Without God coming to us, and calling, drawing, and opening our hearts and minds and souls and spirits, making us ALIVE to God, we would NEVER come to Him. The Gospel is the power of God unto Salvation.

We would NEVER even desire to know Christ Jesus. So, it is BY GRACE ALONE, THROUGH FAITH ALONE, BY CHRIST ALONE, FOR THE GLORY OF GOD ALONE, WE ARE SAVED AND FORGIVEN AND FOLLOW JESUS.

It is all about God and Christ and the Holy Spirit doing their work in a wicked, evil, sinning unbeliever. Yes, we make a choice to follow Jesus, but He gives us the ability to make that choice. Our choice was first a divine work from God upon our dead innermost being which enabled in us a desire for Jesus.

Also, our choice was a guaranteed choice. When God through the Holy Spirit takes out our heart of stone and replaces it with a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:25-27), so that we may know Him there is no way a guilty sinner is going to say, “No God, don’t do that. I don’t want to redeemed and spend eternity in Heaven with You. I will resist the Holy Spirit’s drawing. Not going to happen!

A crude example is this: Your vehicle may have a battery and a fuel tank, but if the battery has no power and is dead, and there is no gasoline in the fuel tank, it will NEVER start. It won’t respond no matter how many times you try to start it. You have to have gas in the tank and electricity in the battery or it won’t work ever! God has to place within us the power and ability to repent, trust in and believe and have holy faith or it will never take place.

God is a choosing God!! He could save all mankind if He so chose to do so. But He didn’t. Someone will say that this is because man makes the choice to be saved or not and not God. But, I hope we have seen that can’t be true.
And you can’t use 2 Peter 3:9: “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” because then that would make humans more powerful than God. It would mean God is wishing for people to be saved and they are having none of it. This would mean God is not God! For the Bible teaches there is NOTHING that GOD can’t do.

Besides, that would be taking that verse out of context and misinterpreting it. Who is Peter writing to? The same people he wrote to in 1 Peter, the elect exiles. In 2 Peter, he tells them to make their calling and election sure. He is writing to saved people, the elect, they are the “you” and “any” and “all” of verse 9.

Here is another point. When Adam and Eve sinned they died spiritually AND BOTH WERE CONSIGNED TO THE WRATH OF GOD IMMEDIDATELY. God performed a sacrifice so He could pass over their sin until Jesus’ once for all sacrifice was made. AND SO VERY CHILD BORN TO THEM DOWN THROUGH TIME UNTIL THIS VERY DAY IS IN THE SAME SITUATION!

All humans are conceived in SIN and are under wrath and condemnation from God the Father. So, it is NOT just when they begin to think about things and make choices whether good or bad, but rather the opposite. They are born sinners.

That means that unless some outside source comes to their rescue they will have to be eventually sent to hell and the lake for eternal punishment. We were there in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve. We all were represented by Adam. In other words, Adam acted on our behalf, and if we had been there we would have done the same thing he did. So, we need a helper, a savior, a God who will come and rescue us. That is what the Gospel does.

It is Jesus who sees dead people at the bottom of the sea of sin and comes to the rescue. He says to us, “LIVE” and we come alive. We are forgiven and made into the Children of God and we follow Jesus our Lord and Savior because of God’s choice and power not our own. A key verse of Scripture states, “11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:11-13).

In all this, we must address the justice of God. The holiness of God demands justice upon the whole human race for their rebellion. We are cosmic traitors. All people should be sent to hell for our rebellion. EVERY LAST ONE OF US DESERVES THE eternal punishment! The angels who fell have no Savior and they are consigned to the Lake of Fire.

But, GOD chose to save some humans, His supreme creation, made in His image. He has forgiven us and saved us from His own wrath and has given us to His Son Jesus as a love gift (John 17) and we are now called the sons of God, children of God, joint heirs of everything with Christ Jesus, new creations, priests of God, holy people and a holy nation.

THE ONLY question I am left with is, why me. I don’t deserve to be forgiven by a holy God. I am no better than anyone else. I am a sinner like all of us. Why save me? Nothing in me merits salvation. Why me and why all of us who are saved? Why not all? Why didn’t He save everyone? I can’t answer that. No one can answer that question. God acts according to His own good pleasure (Ephesians 1). His secret will covers the question. But, because we know His revealed will, we know what He wants us to know.

Romans 9 and Isaiah 64:8 tell us God is the Potter and we are the clay, and He says He does what He wishes and wills with those whom He has created. In doing so, HE CANNOT BE CHARGED WITH A WRONG. FOR THE LOST ARE JUSTLY CONDEMNED FOR THEIR SIN AND REBELLION, AND THOSE HE CHOOSES TO SAVE HAVE THEIR SINS PLACED ON JESUS WHO PAID FOR THEIR CRIME AGAINST GOD AND SO THEY GO FREE. THIS IS ALSO JUST AND HOLY FOR GOD CAN SHOW MERCY TO WHOM HE CHOOSES TO SHOW MERCY AND CAN’T BE CHARGED WITH WRONGDOING.

A human judge, or President, or ruler of a nation can make a decision and let someone be set free from jail or even a death sentence if they wish to do so. It is called mercy. He or she doesn’t do that for all criminals, but sometimes mercy is shown to some. If they can do that and be correct and right, God certainly can, but remember Jesus paid our price we owed for our sinful rebellion by shedding His blood and paying the price by dying for us, in that way we can be shown mercy.

God then transfers Jesus’ holy righteousness to our account making us acceptable to God.

THIS IS THE GOD WE HAVE TO DEAL WITH AND HE IS ALWAYS RIGHT IN WHAT HE DOES. HIS WAYS OR NOT OUR WAYS AND HIS THOUGHTS ARE NOT OUR THOUGHTS. SO BOW TO HIM AND REPENT OF CHALLENGING HIM AND HIS WORKS!

Don’t even think of saying that’s not fair, because we don’t want God to be fair! If he was fair, He would sentence all of us to hell and the Lake of Fire, because we deserve it. So God shows love, compassion, mercy and unmerited favor (Grace) to unworthy sinners whom He calls, draws, and brings to the Light granting them the ability to believe in Jesus and call upon Him for salvation.

Thank God we had our names written in the Lamb’s Book of Life before the foundation of the world, for if it were not done by Him, we all would perish. Thank God for these wonderful truths rather than call Him into question about anything! We are from the dust of the earth and only mortals, HE is GOD, so let God be God and quit trying to be God by thinking for Him!!

Our pride takes us all to destruction, so let it not be rising up in indignation, but rather, let us humble ourselves in thankful submission for our great God who loved us enough to die for us and rise from the dead giving us eternal life.

All my words can be substantiated by reading the Book of Romans, the Gospel of John, the book of Galatians, the book of Ephesians, the book of Genesis, and the book of Revelation. Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to give you light to see God’s truth in His word. He will answer that prayer.
TO GOD BE THE GLORY ALONE AND NOT MAN!

EVERYONE HAS A THEOLOGY OR DOCTRINE!

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SPOTLIGHT:

Everyone in the body of Christ has a theology and a doctrine. We all do! It is certain! So, to pretend we do not have a theology or a doctrine or teaching that we believe is right would be hypocritical.

Doctrine and theology is what the Bible is all about. Paul the Apostle stated to Timothy these words:”Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. They will reject the truth and chase after myths.” – 2 Timothy 4: 1-4

It sounds good perhaps to say, I don’t care what men say or write. I only depend upon the word of God and pay no attention to what a man may say! Now that sounds real pious, but that is NOT what the Holy Spirit told Timothy the the Apostle Paul in the above verses. God raises up prophets and teachers and ministers who are to preach and teach and write the whole counsel of God to the people of God so that they will grow spiritually and be directed by the word of God properly. God has faithful called and chosen ministers who do this and it is wise to follow them and grow in the word as God instructed us.

We all know the word is inspired of God, and we are to teach that word to others and it doesn’t leave its inspired status when a minister preaches and teaches it.

So, how do we know who is right and who is wrong when we hear different interpretations of the Scriptures?

Well, the Bereans searched the scriptures to see if what the Apostle Paul was teaching was actually taught in the word of God! Check out the word in proper context and use proper hermeneutical rules of interpretation. We do not have the actual Mss in Greek, so we use the reliable English translations for our spiritual words from God to us. That means then we must pay attention to proper grammar, the verb tenses, the adjectives, the nouns, and then we must know what actual words mean.

For instance, when God uses the term Israel throughout the Bible, we must remember there are 4 meanings of the term Israel used in the Bible. If one doesn’t know the different meanings and just uses the meaning they have heard most often, which most likely is Israel as a nation of Jews, they will interpret the scriptures incorrectly. You can’t interpret the Bible correctly if you get that one word wrong!

Now, this is what I mean. God gave four Seeds to Abraham which are translated as Israel throughout scripture. These 4 seeds are:

1. Abrahams natural seed: All of Abraham’s physical children.

2. Abraham’s special seed: The Nation of Israel.

3. Abraham’s spiritual seed: All of those through history saved by grace through faith, Jew or Gentile, which make up the body of Christ redeemed by the atoning blood of Christ which places them both into ONE body!,

4. The major SEED singular: Christ Jesus the Savior and Messiah and He is the Israel of God, the Lord from Glory!

So, these truths impact Bible doctrines. Like for instance: who is in the body of Christ, how did they get there, also passages relating to the Doctrines of Grace and Eschatology.

We all need to speed more time studying and meditating on the proper interpretation of the Scriptures.

For instance, did you know the English word for Church, is not a proper rendering of the Greek word ecclesia or ekklesia, which means called out ones. Called out by God reflecting the new birth.

The church is not a building, not a denomination, not something you can join by just signing up.

To be a member of the “called out ones” a person has to have a spiritual work done exclusively by God. He has to change the formerly dead spiritual human who is walking around like a Zombie, to a live born again saint destined for Heaven.

God calls them. God draws them to Himself through the word and the Holy Spirit and creates a New Creature who is alive unto God so they can immediately know and call upon Christ and confess Him openly as their Lord and God and Savior.

Christ alone builds His called out body and doesn’t teach we are to build His body. For His body is a spiritual reality not a physical reality. Believers may live in human bodies, but we are spiritual beings.

So, I hope you can see from these examples how important it is to teach and preach to others the word of God properly.

EXILES ON PLANET EARTH WITH EXPECTATIONS FOR THE PROMISED LAND-NEW JERUSALEM THE CITY OF GOD!

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THE PROMISE OF GOD ALSO INCLUDED A NEW HEAVEN AND A NEW EARTH! THE CITY OF GOD!

SPOTLIGHT:

1 PETER 1:1; 1 Peter 2:9;

Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who reside AS ALIENS, …….”But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

Notice that Peter reveals to the saints that after salvation they are no longer to be considered citizens of this world, but rather aliens, residing in a country that they no longer can consider their home. In another place, Paul the Apostle I believe stated we are as saints to be “looking for a city which has foundations whose builder and maker is God.” A reflection on what Abraham, a friend of God, was doing throughout his lifetime!

I fear to many of us have become acclimated to this world system so much we do not feel like aliens at all. Do we long for and become excited every day about our new home in glory which is to come? Do we long for that place? Paul surely did, and so should we!

OLD TESTAMENT PROMISE TO GOD’S PEOPLE ALSO RELATES TO THE GOSPEL AND OUR POSITION IN CHRIST JESUS!

JEREMIAH 28: 7-14

Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will have welfare.”

This promise was to Israel specifically. However, the Gospel brings each saint of God into God’s promises to all of His children living as aliens on this planet today and tomorrow and always! He continues:

Verse 11; “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortune and from all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from where I sent you into exile.”

God has great plans for us, our welfare, our protection during our stay here on earth, even though we go through trials and tribulations, and difficulties He promised to be WITH US all the way. Right there in the middle of the dark pot of evil. We will and we do pray, and we are promised He will hear our prayers, and eventually remove us from this cursed planet to our heavenly home, or He will come back and translate us into His glory and we will dwell with HIM on planet earth totally restored to perfection in the New city of God, New Jerusalem.

Revelation 21: 1-3; 10-11;

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is No longer any sea. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.”

And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down as a stone of crystal-clear jasper.”

John goes on through Chapter 21 of Revelation to describe that city in more detail. This is where we are ultimately going to be one day and very soon really!

As pilgrims here we need to guard our hearts and minds. We don’t want to be inflicted with a mental destination syndrome! When we have a mental destination syndrome our focus and attention is always geared toward the ‘here and now’ and ‘what can I get out of it all, including relationships, our marriage, our children, our job, our Church and its members and leadership, etc.!

If we keep a ‘down here’ mental destination attitude we will NEVER be satisfied, never be happy, always discouraged.

People will disappoint us. Job, fun, houses, and cars will disappoint us. Name it, all will eventually disappoint us.

Only Christ will never disappoint us. He always keep His promises. He provides, through the Spirit, the proper heart and mind set. Through the Spirit, we will keep our spirit, soul and heart set upon the heavenly city of God and the presence of God in our life daily.

So, as we wake up each morning, let us seriously remember and contemplate the New Jerusalem. In spite of the troublesome times we are in with plagues, riots, war, terrorism, hate, chaos, confusion, crime, murder, robberies, destruction of property, and the outworking of immorality and evil of all types, we have a place prepared for us with Jesus and He will keep His promise to us.

Pray for His Kingdom to come and also pray for the welfare of our City, our State, and our Nation where we live in exile today, for in its welfare we will have welfare.

SONG: NEW JERUSALEM – THE HOPPERS