Friday, May 18, 2018

OBEYING AND SERVING GOD WILL BE REWARDED

Obeying and serving God will be rewarded





I went over so much biblical content in my last article because the Apostle Paul said so much in a few verses. I quoted Colossians 3: 18 - 19 (the last two verses in the previous writing) but not much was said in the last writing about wives submitting to husbands. One truth I found out is if the Triune Godhead set up an order follow through the basics of the setup because no other way will work. Husbands are called to be more aggressive in a nice way and love their wives. Paul warns the men not to be bitter against their spouse. To look at this scenario in the most basic way it is impossible to love and hold bitterness in our hearts.



Paul urges children to obey their parents because it is well pleasing to the Lord. Another truth I found out the hard way is it is good to please God. To be in symmetry with the plan of Jesus Christ takes the burden off us and gives our hearts peace of mind and heart.



The Apostle writes about fathers not provoking their children to anger because they will just get discouraged. Nothing good can come out of provoking or discouragement. People have provoked me to anger in my past and I have to say negative emotions rise up and it is very difficult to get back into the yoke of Jesus Christ.



Paul talks about servants doing their work not with eyeservice as manpleasers but in singleness of heart with the spirit of fearing God. Most individuals do try and impress people through their job but this passage says we are to do it for Jesus Christ. Actually we are to do everything for God, not just our work. Our heart belongs to the Lamb of God who died for our sins but we serve people with the right attitude. That is not always easy to do in this world when people can be just downright mean. Paul clears up this issue in verse twenty three when he says whatsoever we do engage in it heartily as to the Lord and not unto men.



The Apostle talks about the reward of the inheritance because we serve Jesus Christ. We were built to serve somebody so it might as well be the Son of the Living God.



Paul reviews the sowing and reaping principle in a way that is not usually explained because he says a person that does wrong is going to face Jesus Christ someday who has no respect of persons. We live in a world where this is the norm but that will never happen under the one true God. Let me quote the original text so you can read the passage and perhaps make reference to it in this particular Bible study.



(18) "Wives, submit yourselves unto your husbands, as it is fit in the Lord. (19) Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them. (20) Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord. (21) Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged. (22) Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God: (23) And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; (24) Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance; for ye serve the Lord Christ. (25) But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons." Colossians 3:18 - 25.



Some of these subjects are hard to talk about because in this day and age to say the Bible says wives submit to your husbands --- well you can surmise what I am trying to say. I will be very balanced in what this passage says because every member of the family has a role in obeying God in the family context. I grew up in a home where you just did not cross most of the women because they were tough. With so many governments against the family structure it is becoming virtually impossible to live for God and have every member of your family give their homage to Jesus Christ and love one another.



Paul starts with wives. This is a compliment because wives and mothers are the matriarch of the family. It is usually the ladies that are able to set get together fellowships up and do it with ease. God obviously made men and women very different. Neither is more important or less important than the other but God does set up a governmental system so it would stand to reason that both wives and husbands must play their role the way God designed it because no other way will work.



The reason why the Holy Spirit starts out with wives submitting to their husbands is because it is the order of this particular setting and the reason of their partnership but most important the appointment and will of God. It was often said that wives that do this as well as raising good children may be the highest in heaven.



Husbands must love their wives with tender affection but it has to be consistent. Just as Christ loved the church in like matter husbands must love their wives. I am not exactly sure why the Apostle Paul said not to be bitter against their wives but it is obvious that a genuine kind spirit is something very special to a lady.



Verse twenty talks about children obeying their parents. I know some of the quotas that parents give are not always attainable but this is more of an attitude and trust me you will be blessed for this if you apply this biblical principle to your life. Most parents are more fit to direct their kids to rules than the actually child/children. Ideally parents should be tender and children should be obedient. Fathers are not supposed to provoke their children to anger because they will just walk around discouraged. Authority should not be exercised with severity but gentleness. If you rule with rigor then you will produce fierceness in your child. Then it becomes a battle of the wills.



This passage also says servants obey your masters which in our day could mean employees obey your bosses unless they are telling you to do something illegal. You never know in this day and age. When Paul uses the term in all things he was saying not just when they are looking at you but most first world countries have such big brother systems in place that this is usually not a problem at this prophetic point in history. More than likely we are being watched at all times. In the first century that was not the case.



The Apostle talks about singleness of heart, fearing God because this produces goodness in relations with other people. Paul also says whatever we do engage in it heartily because diligence in everything works as long as it is from God. The other way is slothful and that never works. I have to throw a disclaimer in because our society is very big on OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder). We can do something with diligence and not have OCD.



Everything we do should be sanctified by the Lord. For example this is why Christians pray before a meal because they desire God to sanctify the food in this case so a grateful spirit will be present. When Christians labor this also needs to be sanctified in Jesus Christ because we could be doing the work with the wrong motive. In simple terms do it for God, not for people. We are being the profitable servants before God when we are faithful in our duty to people. The more of a servant we are the closer we feel the presence of heaven. If we are Christians and serving people we are serving Jesus Christ and He will give us a reward.



When Paul says he who does wrong will receive for the wrong which he has done I believe the Apostle in context was talking about good verses evil. God does punish the unjust but He also rewards His faithful servants. If masters wrong their servants they are in trouble with Jesus Christ because there is no respect of persons with Him. Our righteous judge will be impartial and give the perfect judgment to masters and servants. I can tell you that if we all played our roles correctly with the right spirit more people would come to know Jesus Christ in a personal way. If you are one that does not have the Lord in your heart I hate to be the person to break the bad news to you but everything you do including labor will be done in vain. In simple terms it is not being done for God.



Now may be a good time to accept Jesus Christ into your heart as your personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting the Son of God into your life. I hope and pray that you just made that eternal decision.



God Bless,

Bob D.

Friday, May 11, 2018

BIBLICAL PRECEPTS BECAUSE WE SERVE AN AMAZING GOD

Biblical precepts because we serve an amazing God





Paul starts out in this passage that I am going to review and writes about such Godly intimate emotions such as bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness and longsuffering.



He urges Christians to forbear one another and forgive. This is a spirit that should be very close to our hearts because we are going to need this in a world that is just downright offensive. This also happens in the church. The Apostle Paul reminds us that Jesus Christ Himself forgave our sins so if we have a quarrel against a person follow the same truth that our Savior had for us with our transgressions. Most Christians have been offended by other believers in Christ so even if we have to extend in understanding this biblical principle please do so because if for example a brother or sister is rude to you a basis of truth in this precept will be rooted inside your heart. Do not let an offence become a grudge.



Paul reminds us above all put on love which takes forgiveness in our heart one step deeper and then the Apostle refers to this as the bond of perfectness.



At this point in verse fifteen which is one of the most popular verses in the Bible we are to let the peace of God rule in our hearts. One of the reasons this should be a reality in our life is because we are called in one body. Paul also reminds us to be thankful because quite frankly none of us deserve this comfort (peace) because we sinned/offended God with our transgressions. If we receive mercy and peace from the Holy Spirit it should only be natural that a grateful spirit is to emanate from our heart. Sometimes I sin before God and am amazed that the Holy Spirit sometimes bestows His peace in my spirit. I say to God, "Lord I just sinned" but in my repentance the reality of the situation is Jesus Christ is merciful. Once again we did not earn any of this love from God so the Apostle is saying be gracious to your brothers and sisters in Christ. You may say but this one person gets to me every time. That is all the more reason to understand this biblical principle and precept.



We are also urged to let the word of Christ dwell in us richly in the wisdom of the Holy Spirit so please be careful of the teachers that you listen to because if their empathies is not in line with the Bible this "Wisdom" will be from people. This will move us away from Jesus Christ. The word of God is good for teaching, admonishing one another in Psalms, hymns and spiritual songs but then Paul says singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. By the way that "Grace" comes from God through His Son Jesus Christ. This is why obeying by faith and following Jesus Christ is so important because we need this "Grace" so we can give it back to God. When we get crowns in heaven we will be giving them back to God. Remember in the presence of Jesus Christ we do not need anything.



In our dealings with life word or deed do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ once again with thanksgiving to God. This is the second time Paul mentions thanksgiving to God so it is obviously a spirit the Holy Spirit has to impart in us as believers in Jesus Christ. I hope you are seeing the trend that these attitudes are not just going to mysteriously be placed in our hearts. This is why our devotion has to be for and in Jesus Christ.



Paul says that wives are to summit to their husbands and husbands are to love their wives. The Apostle warns against bitterness which is a spirit opposite of the other biblical truths that Paul talks about in this set of verses. With that being said let me just quote the original text so you can read the passage for yourself and perhaps make reference to it if need be in this particular Bible study.



(12) "Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering (13) Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. (14) And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. (15) And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. (16) Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. (17) And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him. (18) Wives, submit yourselves unto your husbands, as it is in the Lord. (19) Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them." Colossians 3:12 - 19.



Paul says in verse eight to put off all anger and wrath because if held strongly enough it will turn into malice. In verse twelve the Apostle raises the standard by telling us to put on compassion and kindness. When Paul talks about the "Elect" there are different interpretations but this probably is referring to the body of Christ. We as Christians are supposed to conduct ourselves with the love of Jesus Christ. We are to show compassion to the hurting. We were shown mercy so in turn we should be merciful. Kindness is friendship with people and it's purpose is to reconcile lost souls to God. A kind spirit is recognizable but we should always do it for the purpose of pointing to the Person of Jesus Christ.



Paul writes about humbleness of mind which involves our demeanor but most people do not focus on this characteristic in their life because we tend to want to put ourselves first by nature.



Meekness involves us controlling our anger and patiently bearing this emotion in other people. This is difficult because anger is very much part of our world.



Long - suffering is hard but we must remember that God is this way with us so following Jesus Christ is wise because people will eventually see a Godly spirit in us. What they do with what they see is an entirely different story.



We should be forbearing to one another because there is at least one thing in us that needs to be fore - bared. I do not believe one person is exempt from this so we should be forbearing to others. People will appreciate this emotion coming from us and I know I always recognize this spirit in other people.



Forgiving one another is essential if we desire to show the love of Jesus Christ. Quarrels will sometimes happen even among Christians but the bottom line is it is still our responsibility to forgive because Jesus Christ forgave us. It is amazing how much believers in Jesus Christ forget this basic principle but it is His example that we need to follow because it is part of our forgiveness. The one thing we do not want to do is have an unforgiving spirit.



Paul says above all clothe ourselves with love which lays the foundation of our faith in Jesus Christ. If you want a bond of perfectness engage in Christian mutual love.



To let the peace of God rule in our hearts is to allow this to govern our spirit and make the right decisions because we are called in one body. If you think this is easy ponder this --- we make thirty to sixty thousand decisions a day. We better have a strong foundation in Jesus Christ or we will all make the wrong choices. This peace ruling in our souls involves peace with our brothers and sisters in Christ. We are to have a thankful spirit because this is a pleasant work of the Holy Spirit as opposed to the evil in this world.



To let the word of Christ dwell in us richly means it must rule or dwell in us and always be ready in all of our circumstances. Doing this keeps a dwelling in our souls but it also makes for a great foundation in our life. If the Bible dwells in us poorly the soul will not prosper but if it dwells in us richly this is true wisdom from God. The word of Jesus Christ must dwell in us not to feed on what we do not know but to feed on what we do know through the wisdom of the Holy Spirit.



To teach and admonish one another is to quicken ourselves but do not forget all the humble characteristics Paul instructs us to have which I listed in the beginning of the article. This has to be balanced because we will be prideful when we are supposed to be humble.



Paul writes about poetry and our faith in Jesus Christ. Psalms and hymns can be a source of great edification to us but when we sing songs there is no melody unless there is grace in our hearts.



If we can teach that is good but if we have to admonish it must be done with the right spirit in the name of Christ.



Finally those Christians that do things in the name of Jesus Christ in word or deed will once again want to do this with the spirit of thanksgiving. Paul talks about a grateful heart again because being gracious is from the root word grace (grace/gracious). We were saved by grace and should never forget this through our thanksgiving. Paul starts to talk about the family specifically husbands and wives. I think I will talk about the family in the next article. The reason for this is because Paul says so much in this passage that my fear is it will be too much for anybody to absorb in their mind and spirit.



If you are not a Christian and saying something to the order of wow --- realize I am saying the same thing. This is the kind of God we worship and serve and His name is Jesus Christ. I fall short in many of these biblical truths but the Son of God is perfect. He has every one of these attributes and more because this is only eight verses I reviewed for the internet audience. All I can say is we serve an amazing God.



This may be a good time to accept Jesus Christ into your heart as your very own Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting the Son of the Living God into your life. I hope and pray that you just made that all important eternal decision.



God Bless you,

Bob D.

Saturday, May 05, 2018

DEALING WITH SIN AND LIVING FOR JESUS CHRIST

Dealing with sin and living for Jesus Christ



The Apostle Paul finishes encouraging his readers about the rapture of the church and then immediately talks about mortifying our flesh. He states they (flesh) are on this earth but he gets very specific by naming fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence and covetousness which he defined as idolatry. Another words Paul was saying put these sins to death because they may seem natural in our flesh but these desires are enmity to God. This kind of reminds me of a referee giving instructions before a sports event and in essence he is saying follow the rules and keep it clean when you go to battle. Many times in the Bible the Holy Spirit depicts Christians as soldiers with our spiritual armor through Jesus Christ as we remain in this world before God takes us home. When we get to heaven our bodies, minds and spirits as redeemed saints in Paradise will be sinless.



In verse six Paul talks about the wrath of God coming on the children of disobedience. It is good to try our best to obey God every day because this becomes part of our spirit when we engage in this practice. Those that do not just kind of go out into the world and perhaps might even fall into one or more of these sins. It is interesting that Paul reminds them that they were once like this when living in those sins but now they are washed in the blood of Jesus Christ.



Then the Apostle even gets more specified by writing to the Colossians by saying put off anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy and filthy communication out of your mouth. In verse five Paul goes over one set of sins and then in verse eight he goes over a completely different sequence of transgressions.



At this point the Apostle is keeping them honest by telling them not to lie to one another in word or in their practice of lifestyles. He reminds them that they as believers in Christ put off the old man with his deeds which were obviously evil and the Colossian church put on the new man which is renewed in Godly knowledge after the image of Jesus Christ who is their Creator. This is obviously a practice that Paul is referring to that we as Christians must do every day in our lives because our fleshly nature is constantly trying to pop up and have dominance in our spirit. When we got redeemed through Jesus Christ that did happen but this is a constant battle we face every day of our lives in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must first make a choice that we are going to work with God on this matter. You would be surprised how many Christians will not make a definite choice regarding this issue and as a result are living a lifestyle of sin. They are on very dangerous ground with Jesus Christ. This is hard so do not let anyone tell you it is easy.



The Apostle then goes on to explain that Jesus Christ is all and in all but he first compares opposites such as Greek/Jew, circumcision/ uncirumcision and bond or free. In essence Paul was saying I do not care where you are in life because the Son of God is all and He is supposed to be in all of our circumstances. It is true because whether our life is going great or horrible no true closure will be found in either scenario because Jesus Christ is our grace and peace. This is why our comfort is not in the flip flop of our circumstances. Under this system we have to wait for a good day and wonder why we still do not have real peace in our hearts. Only Jesus Christ through the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit can bestow this upon our soul. Let me quote the original text so you can read it and perhaps make reference to this if need be in this particular study of the Bible.



(5) "Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: (6) For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: (7) In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. (8) But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. (9) Lie not to one another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; (10) And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created him: (11) Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncirumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all." Colossians 3:5 - 11.



It is our duty and responsibility to mortify our members which are upon the earth. These distractions which are opposed to God incline us to the things of the world. Fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection and evil concupiscence are contrary to our Christian life but it will also destroy our heavenly hope. We have to live right but with Godly pureness of hope to our Savior Jesus Christ. The moral is do not let any sin steal this away from your righteous path on earth as we look to Jesus Christ in heaven.



Paul also writes about covetousness which is idolatry. If we have an inordinate affection in this world we are in essence saying this is good. No it is not. It is a lure and bad. If outward enjoyments become an obsession to us then this will permeate our spirit and for all practical purposes we will no longer be living a Godly life. If covetousness is spiritual idolatry then we are giving our love to this world as opposed to Jesus Christ Himself. The Bible talks about this in many different places and it is either one or the other. If we try and straddle the fence we are not strong enough to resist the world so make a decision and commitment to have faith and obedience in God. You know this principle must be important because the very first commandment starts out by saying," (3) "Thou shalt have no other gods before Me. (4) Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in water under earth: (5) Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the inquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and forth generation of them that hate Me; (6) And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love Me, and keep My commandments." Exodus 20:3 - 6.



In keeping with this subject it is obviously necessary to mortify sins because if we do not kill them they will kill us so the best defense is a good offence.



The Apostle then talks about the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience. Those who do not obey the principles of the law have to suffer the penalties of the precepts they disobeyed because God programed into the entire universe a sowing and reaping principle before we were even born. We had nothing to do with this law but are still responsible for our proper obedience in our response to Jesus Christ.



Mortify is an out of the ordinary verb that the Apostle uses but if these sins have or are living in us then I can personally see why Paul chose to use this word. Remember the Apostle reminds them in which you also walked some time when you lived in them. That includes Paul, me and you. If we formally walked in our transgressions which we did then we should be extremely motivated to forsake them through Jesus Christ but this requires us Christians to mortify our flesh. This takes conviction to obey Jesus Christ.



Paul was speaking in the present tense so once again we should be in the practice and discipline of applying this principle to our lives. If we know people that are in the practice of doing this we should pray for them but try to stay away from their company. Even secular people come up to me and say in essence who you hang out with is who you most likely become like because by nature we are easily influenced and affected by the responses of others.



The Apostle seems to desire to stay with this subject. Remember he writes about this "After" he talks about the rapture of the church. Be careful where your passions are because the next set of sins seems to be very passionate in an evil way. He talks about putting off anger, wrath and malice. Paul probably saved malice for last because it is the worst in this list of sins. This sin is anger at a very high level and it just kind of settles in the spirit.



The next word in this list of transgressions is blasphemy but in context it is not speaking bad of God as much as it is talking evil of people. The reason why I said this is because the next word is filthy communication. Gossip and slander is a way of life over here in this country but what these people do not understand is their speech effects the hearers in a bad way. Life gets reduced but the result is never God is good. People like evil but they will miss out on the goodness of God. They are also sowing sin and reaping evil. No longer will these people have a good conscience before God which you can not fake but will always have that weight of guilt in their hearts.



Paul then talks about lying. Of course he says it is wrong but we can never forget that the devil is the Father of lies. The Apostle writes again to put off the old man with his deeds and put on the new man. This must be accomplished in Godly knowledge or renewed in knowledge. Whether it is a new principle or an old precept an ignorant soul can not grow in Jesus Christ.



Paul talks about the image of Him who created him so for all practical purposes the Apostle was implying that when we grow in Godly knowledge this is "Light" somewhat similar to God creating light in the original Genesis creation. We were made after the image of God. Sanctification is a privilege not a burden after our salvation experience in the Person of Jesus Christ.



Paul then talks about contrasts that I already reviewed so for example if free and bond can both be one in Jesus Christ that is attributed to the work of the Holy Spirit through the Person of Jesus Christ. We obey but it is God doing the work through our spirit.



Notice Paul is saying that one side has to live holy but so does the contrasting other side because the same rules apply to both but so do the benefits of obeying God. Our Savior does not show favorites but this world will always be guilty of this bias.



Paul writes about Jesus Christ and said He is all, and in all. What can I say --- Jesus Christ is our life and everything. The Son of God is our hope and fulfillment. If you would like to accept Jesus Christ into your heart as your personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins then invite the Son of God into your life. Now may be a good time to make this all important eternal decision. I hope and pray that you just made this choice for your life and eternity.



God Bless you,

Bob D.





Monday, April 16, 2018

LOVE FOR JESUS CHRIST AND THE RAPTURE OF THE CHURCH

Love for Jesus Christ and the rapture of the church





The Apostle Paul starts out with us as Christians for all practical purposes being dead with Jesus Christ from the rudiments of the world. This is a place as believers in Christ that we have to abide in because there are many sinful lures down here; therefore, Paul in essence ends verse twenty by encouraging us to live by basic principles in the Bible as we follow Jesus Christ.



Once again Paul warns his readers not to follow the commandments and doctrines of men. Who is smarter God or people? The deception with this is it looks really good on the outside but little do the people engaging in these practices understand they are not worshipping their true Creator.



At the beginning of chapter three the Apostle puts on a really good case that if we were risen with Christ we are to seek those things which are above. This is where Jesus Christ sits on the right hand of God. Paul specifically writes about our affections and urges our love to be on heaven as opposed to the things on this earth which is almost always bad for us and will die. In fact the Apostle even says that we are dead and our life is hid with Christ in God.



Paul talks about the rapture of the church. First he starts by explaining that Jesus Christ is our life. This should give us our first clue on how to live before He returns. The Apostle then explains that Jesus Christ will appear and when He does we will also appear with Him in glory. Let me just quote the original text and you can read this or perhaps make reference to it if need be in this particular study of the Bible.



(20) "Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, (21) (Touch not; taste not; handle not; (22) Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? (23) Which things have indeed a show of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honor to the satisfying of the flesh. (1) If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. (2) Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. (3) For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. (4) When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory." Colossians 2:20 - 23 / Colossians 3:1 - 4.



If something is from the traditions and injunctions of people then they have no true authority and we must realize this biblical fact. If the teaching is from the penned word of the Holy Spirit in the Bible it is true and from God.



We are basically talking about true or false here in this particular context. The worst case scenario is said person will follow the traditions and injunctions of men at the exclusion of the word of God and not go to heaven. If Jesus Christ Himself is not at the center of the teaching throw it out because you are going down a road that has nothing to do with God. This is why I believe the Apostle Paul in verse twenty three says it can look like wisdom, worship and humility but it is really a road of deception that has nothing to do with the Lamb of God that died for our sins. If the devil can throw half truth and half lies in our pursuit of God and get us to believe this we are in big trouble.



If we ever find ourselves on this path then we need to be engaged in some serious repentance before God. This is a response that the Triune Godhead respects and guides us in our recovery to the real truth who is Jesus Christ Himself. Did you ever see these testimonies where they were in this lifestyle and one day came to the truth of the true gospel of Jesus Christ? We can just see the countenance of love and light come out of their eyes because they are a brand new person in the Son of God. They were confused but now they are found. This is an example of the true way of salvation.



Many times when I see these man made rules they think themselves wiser than other people but if there is no true devotion to God in this system then they are not worshipping in spirit and truth. The Bible says that the true children of Jesus Christ worship Him in spirit and truth. (23) " But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship Him. (24) God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in truth." John 4:23 - 24.



If we try and worship God through ritual observances we will not be talking to Jesus Christ. If we grow in grace and knowledge through the guidance of the Bible we will have communion with the Son of the Living God. The first seems like wisdom but it is foolish. It is the right choice to give our entire subjection to Jesus Christ who is the head of the church. Do we really want to be worshipping the devil through the disguise of ritual observances? If this is the case on judgment day Jesus Christ may say something to the order of I had nothing to do with any of these man made rules. Be careful where you put your allegiance because it will determine your eternity.



In Colossians chapter three it is true that we were made free from the ceremonial law because of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ but this does not mean we can live like the devil. This is our opportunity to walk more close to God.



Our "Concern" must be about the things of heaven more than this earth. There are issues down here that we have to deal with head on but it should always be for the kingdom of God. The Bible never says avoid the problems in life, it says face them with the power and wisdom of the Holy Spirit.



Jesus Christ sits at the right hand of the Father as our God to give our spirit true closure as we seek heavenly things to give us true peace. If we try and find comfort through circumstances it will be back and forth because the devil can not promise us anything. He thrives on betrayal.



We have one of two choices. We can set our affections on heaven and our spirit will eventually move upward or we can set our affections on the things in earth which is actually opposed to the pureness that is to be found in Jesus Christ. The prevalence of our affection to one will proportionally weaken our love for the other because they are opposite realities which have nothing to do with each other.



We are supposed to be alive in Jesus Christ and dead to the world. This is a choice on our part or a renouncement. The next step is to make sure our affections are in the right place or should I say the right Person (Jesus Christ).



If our life is hid with Christ in God the new man has his or her new life in the Triune Godhead. Now our life is hid with Jesus Christ but that does not mean secrecy. This means security. This is why we have comfort and peace because our life as a true believer in Jesus Christ is hid with Him and is safely in the Son of God. We can not interpret this biblical principle in that nothing bad will happen to us on earth but the precept is saying we are eternally secure in Jesus Christ.



In Colossians 2:4 the Apostle Paul talks about the rapture of the church. This is an event that we can hope for the perfection of our position in Jesus Christ. This should tell us now that our life down here should be in Jesus Christ. Much of this is hid from us now but when Jesus Christ comes for us in the Blessed Hope (rapture) He will appear in His own glory and His Father's glory. When we are translated at the rapture of the church we will appear with Him in glory. This will be in the Person of Jesus Christ and it will be His pleasure to have His children with Him. It will also be our joy to be with Him.



We should be looking for this event without setting a date being ready at any moment and our affection should be on the world to come. We should be living above this world because our head (Jesus Christ) is in heaven. This is our true home and our treasure should be there so our hope should be in the coming of the Lord. This is why the rapture is sometimes referred to as the Blessed Hope.



If you do not know Jesus Christ as your very own personal Savior and Lord now may be a good time for you to repent of all your sins and invite the Son of God into your life. Sincere Christians do set their affections on heaven and we are occupying until He comes as we watch for His return (the rapture of the church).



You do not have to be a prophecy expert to understand that we are in the general vicinity of the return of Jesus Christ. All you have to do is look at the news. I do not know when Jesus Christ is coming but this event can not be to far off so wise people will accept and live for the Lamb of God who died for our sins. He is the one (Jesus Christ) that will snatch His bride up in the rapture of the church. I hope and pray that you just made that all important eternal decision through the salvation of Jesus Christ.



God Bless you,

Bob D.

OUR PLACE OF FAITH AND OBEDIENCE IN JESUS CHRIST

Our place of faith and obedience in Jesus Christ





We were all at one point dead in our sins. When we accepted Jesus Christ into our hearts we were quickened together with Him and our sins were forgiven. God does not hold our trespasses against us past tense. There is not one verse in the Bible that says when we accepted Jesus Christ into our hearts our sins have been forgiven past, present and future. "Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God." Romans 3:25.



Can you possibly imagine the Apostle Paul forgetting to write in the words present and future? I can not because he was an extremely detailed writer. We will not find a single verse in the King James Bible that tells us when we accepted Jesus Christ into our hearts our sins were forgiven past, present and future. Obviously we as Christians are to set our sights on living holy and obedient lives before God and if we do sin ask for forgiveness. 1 John 1:9 tells us Jesus Christ is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.



We obviously have to repent of our present offenses against heaven because this precious salvation experience is not a license to sin. Notice Romans 3:25 just writes our sins that are past are forgiven. If our present and future sins were forgiven at salvation then the Apostle John wrote in vain, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9. Why would we even need cleansing if our present and future sins are already forgiven?



You would be surprised as to how many Christians do not understand this principle. We are responsible and accountable for our manner of conversation or the way we live our life. Notice John says "If" because it is not an expected thing or not something that we should be engaging in but "If" we do sin we can sincerely and earnestly ask for forgiveness. I am in the practice of repenting of my sins every night --- known, unknown, small or big sins. It is very important to me that I stay honest and clean before God.



When we came to the Lord we changed possessions from darkness to Light. The blotting out of the handwriting of ordinances that was against us as sinners before God was taken out of the way and nailed to His cross.



When Jesus Christ rose from the dead on the third day after dying on a cross He spoiled principalities and powers and triumphed in victory over them.



The Apostle Paul must have had a problem with "Special" days as some people were judging other people regarding this subject. The "Special" substances or days were meat, drink, holy days, new moons and Sabbath days. Regarding the first two this does not mean we are to commit the sin of gluttony or get drunk with wine but I will expand on this verse as the article progresses. I could use the rapture of the church as an example because I do not believe this event will happen on a feast day. The Bible says so many times that Jesus is coming at a time when we least expect Him to come in the Blessed Hope. I am sorry to divert with an example but in getting back to the subject Paul says we as the church are the body of Christ.



Once again Paul warns his readers not to let anyone beguile them through trickery or inflated truths which usually becomes a lie. Paul explains that Jesus Christ is the head and we as His body get our spiritual nourishment from Him being knit together. If we do increase with spiritual growth this is from God. Let me quote the original text so you can read it and perhaps make reference to the passage in this biblical study.



(13) "And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath He quickened together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses; (14) Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross; (15) And having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it. (16) Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holiday, or of the new moon, or of the Sabbath days: (17) Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ. (18) Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, (19) And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God." Colossians 2:13 - 19.



This is going to sound like a paradox but the death of Jesus Christ is our life. Our state of sin before we came to Jesus Christ was our state of spiritual death. An unbeliever is unfortunately in sin but they are also dead in their trespasses against God. Our body decays because it is in a degenerated state and eventually dies but sin is the corruption of the soul. When a person is dead he or she is unable to help him or herself in their own power. In like manner a habitual sinner is impotent to stop his trespasses without the resurrected power of Jesus Christ. We were dead in our sins before we invited Jesus Christ into our hearts but now we are quickened together in Him. The death of Jesus Christ was the death of our sins but the resurrection was the quickening of our souls. If we relate this to an unbeliever they will not know what we are talking about but if they come to know the Lord this understanding will be a reality in their spirit.



There were dark forces against us but they were taken away when we became born again which is a term straight out of John chapter three. When Paul talks about the handwriting of ordinances which were against us this was Jesus Christ obtaining for us a legal discharge for our sins. There was the hand writing of ordinances in the ceremonial law but the Lord Jesus Christ took it out of the way and nailed it to His cross.



In verse seventeen Paul talks about shadows but when the Son of God died on the cross this fled away but an individual still has a personal responsibility to repent of all their sins and invite Jesus Christ into his or her heart. If you do not feel as if you did this now may be a good time to make this all important eternal decision. Jesus Christ has already obtained a glorious victory for us over the powers of darkness.



The Apostle Paul talks about Jesus Christ spoiling principalities and powers because the curse of the law was against us but the power of Satan was in his possession. The Son of God took this out of the hands of the devil and redeemed us through His resurrection power. All we have to do is accept Him into our hearts by faith and repenting of all our sins and inviting Jesus Christ into our life. All the powers of hell were conquered by our dying Redeemer. His crown of thorns turned into a crown of victory. He made a show of them openly. Jesus Christ triumphed over them by dying and raising on the third day.



When Paul talks about not letting any person judge you in meat or drink this means if God did not impose this on you do not let them put a burden on your soul because it is man made. The Apostle talks about the shadows of things to come that were done away with when Christ rose from the dead. They had the shadows but we have Jesus Christ Himself in our hearts.



Apparently gentile philosophers worshiped angels. Paul did not desire anyone to be deceived and quite frankly every Apostle had the same solemn fear. Once again we see another invention of people that is not of God. Watch who you worship because we were made to worship. The implication is in the ten commandments. Worship God and God alone is the principle so please take this precept serious. Individuals that do this might be humble but there is pride in disobeying God. Paul talks about not holding the head because more than likely pride is at the practice of these evil practices and false worship. We should never let go of our hold of Jesus Christ because there is always some kind of lure in the world waiting for us to fall into a trap of sin.



If you will go back and read verse nineteen Paul says a lot in a few words. The body of Christ is supposed to be a growing body but the increase is always from God if it is true righteous maturity. If I am doing something for Jesus Christ and I see an increase I know God causes the growth. Do you think I am going to give myself the credit? I can not even wake up in the morning. When I do it takes me a couple of hours to really get started knowing "Far" less than one percent of everything going on in this universe. My hope and prayer is for everyone reading this article to have Jesus Christ in their hearts and lives and understand our place of obedience and faith in Him.



God bless you,

Bob D.

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ROOTED AND GROUNDED IN JESUS CHRIST

Rooted and grounded in Jesus Christ



In this particular passage Paul starts out warning his readers that he did not desire anybody to beguile them with enticing words. At this point in my Christian journey I have way to many checks and balances to allow someone to do this to me but I am speaking to a large enough audience where Christians are at different points in their walk with Jesus Christ. It does not hurt if we pray to God that this trap does not happen to us because this will steal our fellowship with Jesus Christ.



Paul explained that he could not be with them in his flesh but was with them in spirit. When I know a person is with me in spirit I receive much comfort. Paul did this with joy but what he really wanted was for them to be steadfast in the Person of Jesus Christ.



He reminds them that since they accepted Jesus Christ as Lord being serious Christians these believers in the Son of God were supposed to walk in Him. We were rooted and grounded in the Lamb of God who died for our sins but we are also built up in Him because we are established in the faith. This is how we were taught so hopefully if we were under sound biblical guidance we really should be thankful. Most people were not taught properly and that is difficult because even if we were blessed with good teaching it is still going to be hard to continue and abide in Jesus Christ. There is also another point I would like to make --- a person has to have the will to do this in their spirit.



Once again the Apostle Paul warns them that no person spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit so if you see a theologian mixing philosophy with the Bible that should be a red flag. Do not get concerned with the traditions of men and do not get caught up with the rudiments of the world but be driven to stay in the yoke of Jesus Christ. Remember in Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. Hopefully we are complete in Him who is the head of all principality and power.



Paul also encourages his readers to throw away the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ. To do this requires determination and courage but that is what God wants from us so we should desire to be obedient to Him.



The last verse I will be going over is verse twelve which in the most basic terms says as Christians we were buried with Jesus Christ but we also were risen with Him only because the Son of God rose from the dead on the third day after He was crucified on a cross for our sins. Let me just quote the original text so you can read this passage for yourself and perhaps make reference to it if need be in this particular biblical study.



(4) "And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. (5) For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ. (6) As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him: (7) Rooted and built in Him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. (8) Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. (9) For in Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. (10) And ye are complete in Him, which is the head of all principality and power: (11) In whom also ye are circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: (12) Buried with Him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with Him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised Him from the dead." Colossians 2:4 - 12.



Once again another Apostle cautions a group of Christians against deceivers. Paul uses words such as beguile and entice because if this happens Satan spoils souls that are on the recipient end of the deception. The devil can not really ruin us unless he cheats us but we have to agree to the deception. Satan knows a good fight is never fair. Be careful of enticing words mixed with flattery because the minions of Satan are waiting to put a stamp on false theology, sin or just plain being in a situation that we respond in the most ridicules way and end up having to apologize for our behavior.



There is an antidote against seducers which is to be strongly rooted in Jesus Christ. Christians need to realize that they ( past tense) accepted Him into their hearts but we need to consent to our Lord and listen to Him in every relation and capacity. It has to be obvious that we as believers in Jesus Christ are to walk in Him daily and incorporate our communion with the Lamb of God that died for our sins. If we walk close to Jesus Christ the more firmly we will be rooted in Him and then we will walk "In Him." If we are rooted in Jesus Christ we will be built up in His peace and power but it would have to be overwhelmingly obvious that we are to do this with the spirit of thanksgiving. Remember who we were and the emptiness that was in our hearts.



Paul was extremely concerned that these Christians would be spoiled through philosophy, vain deceit, the traditions of men and the rudiments of the world as opposed to following Jesus Christ. All these satanic things that Paul mentioned are vain and deceitful. Do not mix philosophy with Christian principles because your mind will become alienated from Jesus Christ. If my faith is about what another person believes then we have turned away from following Jesus Christ.



Paul talks about the ceremonial law but the shadows of this are found in the substance of Jesus Christ. They were searching for the Shekinah glory and the presence of God but now we have that in the Person of Jesus Christ. Verse nine says, "For in Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily." The fullness of the Godhead dwells in Christ literally not figuratively. Circumcision was the seal of the covenant but we are in Christ and are circumcised in the Son of God. This was made without hands. This did not happen by the power of a person but by the power of the Spirit of God. Maybe this is why Paul spent some time writing about all these different types of deceptions. He was saying they are just people with false theology.



The Jews had this false impression that they were complete in the ceremonial law but we as Christians are complete in Jesus Christ. The ceremonial law had defects in it but all those imperfections are made up in the gospel of Jesus Christ who is the head of all principality and power. The Son of God has no defects or imperfections. It should give us tremendous comfort that Jesus Christ is Lord and the head of all powers in heaven and earth.



Verse twelve talks about us as true Christians being buried with Him in baptism but we were also risen with Him. Both are signified by our baptism. This is the circumcision made without hands because it is through the faith of the operation of God through His Son Jesus Christ. In this baptism Jesus Christ desires to be our God and we should want to be His disciple. We should also be so touched by this wonderful grace that we want to die to sin and live a righteous life before God.



If you feel that the Apostle Paul deliberates a good case and want to come and be right with God then now may be the time to accept Jesus Christ into your heart as your very own personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting Him into your life. By doing this your name will be written in the Lamb's book of life. This is an eternal decision but all the more reason we are to take our walk with the Son of God who is Jesus Christ down here on earth very serious.





God bless you,







Bob D.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

JESUS CHRIST IS THE CENTER OF OUR HEARTS

Jesus Christ is the center of our hearts



Paul rejoiced in his sufferings but it was for those that he ministered to so complaining at this point in his life was not on the pecking order. This Apostle had some kind of affliction in his body but his love for the church far surpassed his pain. This is a rare attitude that many servants of God do not have because the Holy Spirit has to put this in us through our willingness to have this degree of love. God made Paul a minister but it was for them and for all practical purposes for us because this Apostle wanted to fulfill the word of God.



Paul spoke of a mystery that was hid for generations but was now made manifest to His saints. He wanted them to know that one of the truths made known was God revealing the riches of His glory which is Christ in us our hope of glory.



It is very interesting to me that Paul as a preacher used the term warning every man before he talked about teaching every man in all wisdom. The warning is the fact that most people are unfortunately going to die in their sins and Paul was extremely aware of this truth. On the good side teaching Christians the Bible was for the purpose of presenting every man perfect in Christ Jesus.



Paul made sure that he let his readers know that he was laboring for Jesus Christ which was very much part of his spirit. He was doing his part of bringing in the harvest --- are we? Trust me when I say this we don't want to be found not working for Jesus Christ at the rapture of the church. This is the very least we can do considering everything God did for us through His Son Jesus Christ.



Let us face the facts because Paul knew many people. He pours his heart out to all these different groups that he cares for very much because he wanted their souls comforted being knit together in love and being rich with full assurance in understanding the word of God. The Apostle also talks about the mystery of God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. We know many of the answers regarding this divine reality but I can relate to the Apostle because sometimes it works better for me to see these truths as a mystery.



The very last verse I will be going over is one of the most popular verses in the Bible. "In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." It is pretty obvious we are to be seeking Jesus Christ everyday for wisdom and knowledge? Let me quote the original text in the Bible that I will be going over and I certainly encourage you to read it and perhaps make reference to this passage if you need be in this particular study of the Bible.



(24) "Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflications of Christ in my flesh for His body's sake, which is the church: (25) Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God; (26) Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from greerations, but now is made manifest to His saints: (27) To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: (28) Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: (29) Whereunto I also labor, striving according to His working, which worketh in me mightily." Colossians 1 :24 - 29.



(1) "For I would that ye knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh; (2) That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ; (3) In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." Colossians 2:1 - 3.



There are different types of ministers. Paul was a suffering preacher. He did get persecuted for the exact reason of preaching the gospel to them. The thing with the Apostle Paul is he rejoiced in his sufferings. Fill up that which is behind is difficult to interpret but he seemed to be saying that his spirit was filling up with the fullness of the Holy Spirit and as a result Paul was with them in his heart very deeply with Godly affection.



I pointed out that Paul used the word warn before teach. Human beings are very prone to walk down the path of destruction. It is just in us because that is our nature. When the Apostle warned people that were amiss he desired them to get right with God. Paul approached his ministry with warning and teaching combined into one. This should be our aim because both are pertinent to our well being with God and other people. We need warnings because we do not want to offend God but if we don't grow with grace and knowledge then we will never be balanced in our growth. When we were a child (small) but older (bigger). Small of course being associated with warnings and bigger being associated with growing in grace and knowledge. I think we would all agree if we are always being warned we are still a spiritual child.



Paul also confesses that he was a preacher of labor. I put my insight in on this subject that we do not want to be the unprofitable servants because of fear. We should be using our gifts to bring in the harvest before Jesus Christ comes for His church. Paul wanted to do good. God is looking at our heart. One of the reasons the power of God was working in Paul was because he did this work with "Heart" and was very effective because obedience comes before comfort.



Paul talked about the mystery that was hid from the ages but was now made manifest to the saints. This is the riches of the glory of God among the gentiles. Jesus Christ was in them who was their hope of glory. The base of our hope has to be in Jesus Christ. I think it is a very thought provoking subject that people who went to hell and came back to tell their story often said, I was suffocating because the air was very thin, the odor was beyond horrible, I was hungry, I was thirsty, I wanted to go to bed but could not, I was burning in flames and demons came over to torture me but the worst thing was I had no hope. When Paul gives this principle to have strong hope in Jesus Christ then grasp on to this with all you have because this is a precious truth we have in our beloved Savior and Lord. What is the evidence of this special hope? It is the Holy Spirit working in our heart.



In verse twenty three the Apostle says continue in the faith, grounded and settled but do not move away from the hope of the gospel in Jesus Christ. We can expect the good end of our faith if we continue abiding in Jesus Christ. The key to this is to be so grounded in the Son of God that we can not be moved from this precious faith, hope and love that we have for Jesus Christ.



Paul never saw the people of Colosse and yet he spoke to them with tenderness. Granted he expressed himself in a strange way in Colossians 2:1 because he used the verb conflict but it was his way of telling them how much he truly loved them with all his heart. Conflict, hope and love go together. He expressed the hope that they would meet in heaven. I think Paul knew deep down that they would not meet on earth but he did want their hearts knit together in love. This was the only way they were going to be comforted. Love has a way of producing true peace.



Our knowledge has to grow for us to have an understanding of the mystery of God. This is not surface knowledge because we eventually have to enter into the meaning and grand design of the will of God. Our faith is supposed to grow to an assurance and acknowledgment of this mystery that Paul is writing about to these Christians. Assurance is a well settled knowledge and acknowledgment is belief in our hearts and confession with our mouths. Then we will be rich with assurance of understanding because this makes for strong faith and a rich soul.



I have some peace about myself when I realize that their hearts were comforted in the Person of the Holy Spirit. Their souls were prospering because they were filled with joy and peace. Is that where our hearts are in Jesus Christ? The stronger our faith the warmer our love and the greater our comfort.



In verse three Paul says, "In whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." These treasures are not hidden from us but for us in the Person of Jesus Christ. The wisest thing we can do in life is to draw from the treasures which are hidden in the Son of God.



If you do not have this precious gift of salvation in our Lord that we serve maybe now would be a good time to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting the Son of God into your life. If you just made that all important eternal decision then you may desire to follow along with our Bible studies that we have dedicated to God through His Son Jesus Christ.



God Bless you,

Bob D.

OUR CREATOR IS OUR REDEEMER

Our Creator is our Redeemer



This passage in Colossians 1:15 - 23 starts out with a very powerful verse because we would not even be here if it were not for this biblical precept. Jesus Christ is the image of the invisible God and the firstborn of every creature. He is our Creator. The Son of God created everything in heaven, earth, visible and invisible but it does not matter if it be thrones, dominions, principalities or powers because all things were created by Him and for Him. Jesus Christ was before all things and it is only because of the Creator of the universe that anybody that is breathing is here or consists before Him.



It would have to be obvious that Jesus Christ is the head of the body or the church which consists of people that accepted Him into their hearts by repenting of all sins because the Son of God is the firstborn from the dead that in all things He might have the preeminence. For all practical purposes as Christians we should obey God because He is our author of life and salvation through His Son Jesus Christ.



God the Father set this system up in Him because all fullness dwells in Jesus Christ. It not only pleases the Triune Godhead but it should give us tremendous comfort because He is our Savior and Lord.



Every Christian I have ever talked to desires peace in their life. How does peace rest in our souls? Peace is possible through the blood of His cross and by Jesus Christ who reconciled all things to Himself. This includes things on earth and in heaven.



We need to be honest with ourselves. We were all alienated and enemies of God. The real question is how and the Bible gives us this answer. It starts in our minds and ends up into wicked works. This is not to confuse the fact that everybody was born in sin after Adam ate a portion of the apple shortly after Creation. The mind and wicked works is the Bible getting more specific on what practically separates us from God. The Bible gives us the answer on how we can be united to God through Jesus Christ.



God the Father sent His Son to earth and Jesus Christ came in the flesh and died on a cross in a horrible death. He did this for us so we could be presented holy, unblamable and unreprovable in His sight. As you can see there is no room for being prideful because salvation is based on the finished work of Jesus Christ.



Paul does encourage us to continue in the faith. He empathizes us to be grounded, settled and not moved away from the hope of the gospel. The Apostle explains to the Colossians that they heard this message in a clear way. Let me quote the original text in the Bible so you can read this very positive passage and perhaps make reference if you need to do so in this very direct study in Scripture.



(15) "Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: (16) For by Him were all created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him, and for Him: (17) And He is before all things, and by Him all things consist. (18) And He is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things He might have the preeminence. (19) For it pleased the Father that in Him should all fullness dwell; (20) And, having made peace through the blood of the cross, by Him to reconcile all things unto Himself; by Him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. (21) And you, that were sometime aliented and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath He reconciled. (22) In the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy and unblamable and unreprovable in His sight: (23) If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister." Colossians 1:15 - 23.



Jesus Christ is the image of the invisible God. He is the image of God as Jesus Christ is the image of His Father and He has a likeness to Him. It would have to be obvious that the Creator (Jesus Christ) is the firstborn of every creature. This is one of the ways the Bible explains an aspect of eternity. For one this principle shows us Jesus Christ has dominion over all things. He is heir and Lord over all including those that oppose Him. The Son of God is not a creature, He is the Creator. Our All Powerful God created all things in heaven and earth both visible and invisible.



There seems to be several orders of angels because this passage talks about thrones, dominions, principalities and powers.



We as Christians can never forget this biblical precept because this passage is saying our allegiance is to and for Jesus Christ. Our Creator is not only the beginning but He is the end. He was in eternity past, very active in our lives and will be King of Kings and Lord of Lords at His second coming. For all eternity He will be worshipped and served forever for those that are in His kingdom. This should give us a clue that we are to be doing this now and if you don't feel you are at that point pray to God that the Holy Spirit opens your heart to be more flexible to this direction.



Remember the Holy Spirit has to work through our hearts for proper faith and obedience to God. If you try doing this in your own strength you will fall so let Jesus Christ know through pray that your heart is in the right place but you are struggling. I am a witness that this works because God is looking at our spirit and He will know if we are sincere and earnest.



All things consist because of Jesus Christ which includes us so one of the realities we should never forget is all of Creation is kept together by the power of the Son of God and move in it's proper order that only a divine Creator could have designed for the universe. If the sun was not placed in the exact position related to planet earth the world would either freeze or burn up (depending on which direction up or down) and you would not be reading this riveting article. Only joking but what I just said is one hundred percent true so when people believe in evolution I have never personally heard a legitimate explanation of this fact regarding the sun. How does a bat fly through a dark cave with incredible speed and never hit a wall with sonar vision? Evolution --- no Creation. Neither example could have happened by chance. I could give many other examples but the article would be way to long.



Jesus Christ is the head of the church and just like He is the leader of our natural body the Son of the Living God gives us grace and we receive strength from Him. If our All Powerful God created the universe this passage is saying we can trust Jesus Christ for our life and eternity.



The Son of God is the beginning, the first - born from the dead. We as Christians have His resurrection power in our spirit. Jesus Christ did not just die for our sins on a cross but He rose from the dead on the third day.



He was the first and only one that rose by His own power; therefore, the Holy Spirit has given us evidence in us of our resurrection through Jesus Christ from eternal death into eternal life.



This passage also says Jesus Christ has all things the pre - eminence. This means He has Lordship over all powers in heaven and everything and everybody on earth. When people say the devil runs this world I would like to say Satan does not run this world; however, he is the god of this world according to 2 Corinthians 4:4. There is a difference between the two. If we can read between the lines the Apostle Paul was inferring that we as believers in Jesus Christ should allow our Savior and Lord to have pre - eminence in our life. If all fullness dwells in Jesus Christ this abundance is not only for Himself but the filling of His resurrected Power is for us as His children.



Verse fourteen talks about Jesus being our Redeemer and our sins being forgiven. If we are redeemed it must be from sin but this can only happen if God forgives us in our transgressions. I often times ponder over how gracious God is through His Son Jesus Christ with all of us on this subject of redemption and forgiveness.



We struggle forgiving other people but God pardons through true repentance completely to the point where He does not remember our transgressions any more. Getting back to us we tend to bring it up again but we should follow the good example of Jesus Christ and let the offence go if they honestly ask for forgiveness. By the way I am talking about people that committed offences against us as Christians. If they did we are still told to pray for them and never hold a grudge. If you are one that has not accepted the Lord now may be a good time to confess all your sins and accept Jesus Christ in your heart by inviting Him into your life. Even if you have any doubts then make that eternal decision now because this is not something that the average person does because most people have the spirit of apathy.



Jesus Christ reconciled us to God and offers us pardon because the bottom line is we all sinned before God and with repentance we receive peace because that comes after forgiveness. There have been some really bad enemies of God that repented and got saved through the shed blood of Jesus Christ and were then reconciled to God the Father. I'm talking really horrible people finally got right with God. We may never know the vastness on how much God forgave us through His Son based on our earnest repentance. All I know is we are all going to be eternally grateful.



Paul says in verse twenty three, ... "To every creature which is under heaven" ... which means the gospel of Jesus Christ excludes no one who do not exclude themselves. Please do not do this to yourself. The next part of the verse says the Apostle Paul was extremely thankful to God that he was given the privilege of sharing Jesus Christ with other people. I also share his same feelings. I am very happy to serve you.



God Bless,

Bob D.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

A POWERFUL PRAYER


A powerful prayer





This is a high energy passage that I will be going over with you for your encouragement. From the very day the leaders heard about the Colossians or had direct dealings with these Christians they did not cease to pray for them.



The very first truth that they prayed for was that they would be filled with the knowledge of His will but with all wisdom and spiritual understanding. Only God can impart these gifts to us so this does take much intercession before God because it is not going to be granted to the average person if they just stay neurtal.



They prayed that they might walk worthy to the Lord and please Him. One of the ways we do this is to be fruitful in every good work but we have to be reading the Bible on a regular basis because increasing in the knowledge of God is usually when the Holy Spirit speaks to us in our minds and hearts. By the way we can also pray this prayer for ourselves because most people reading this article would lack in a couple of areas.



They desired to be strengthened with all the power of the Lord. The leaders of the church desired it done by His glorious power but with patience and longsuffering with joyfulness. That sounds like a lot but stay with me. Since the prayer warriors were very specific we should catch every word of their intercession because this is where believers in Christ should desire to be in our walk with God.



They gave thanks to God the Father but for a very specific reason which I will talk about later in the article. There was a reminder that they were delivered from the power of darkness and translated into the kingdom of His dear Son. When we got saved through Jesus Christ His "Light" extinguished the darkness in our life. Are we looking for that "Light" every day of our lives? We received redemption through His blood and our sins were forgiven.



Let me just quote the original text of Colossians 1:9-14. I certainly urge you to read this and perhaps make reference to it for this particular study in the Bible.



(9) "For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; (10) That ye may walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; (11) Strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; (12) Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: (13) Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son: (14) In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins." Colossians 1:9-14.



Paul was reassuring the Colossians who he did not even know through prayer but in a very specific way with detailed theology but very simple. Once again the Apostle was given several reports on how this church was doing so he was very familiar with these Christians. Paul had heard they were good but prayed that they even might be better but not in their flesh. The Apostle made it very clear that this must be done in the Person of Jesus Christ.



One of the first things the Apostle Paul said was that we are not ceasing to pray for you. There were multiple leaders of the faith praying around the clock for them. This should give us a clue that we are to pray for others around the clock in the middle of our busy or non busy days. The original Apostles did this so we should follow their good example.



I don't mean to be taken wrong but we can also pray for ourselves especially if we are struggling with something that is bigger than us and is causing us to stumble. This is us as Christians confessing that we fall short of God and desire to be in good standing with Him. If someone comes to our mind it is just practical to pray for them. Why waste a thought?



Paul prayed that they would be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding. If we have an empty perception of a biblical truth then this has no significance in our life. If we can not apply the Godly precept to our daily living then for all practical purposes this truth does not mean anything to us as believers in Jesus Christ. Our knowledge of the will of God must always be practical because we must not only know the biblical truth but apply it to our lives. Our knowledge is only a blessing when it is in the wisdom of God but it has to be taken to the next level for our particular circumstances.



This does take prayer because it is one thing to know a biblical truth but it is an extended truth when the Holy Spirit shows us how to apply this to our lives. We really should be filled with the knowledge of God for His will but just like verse ten says we should desire more knowledge of God because the more we know the more we realize how much we do not know.



Obviously proper biblical knowledge without living right will not be any use to us as Christians. This is why Paul says that they may walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing. We have to agree with God in the way we live in our faith so we can be pleasing to God but also to people in a righteous way.



Paul also desired them to be fruitful in every good work. Our words must match our works and we will struggle with this issue for the rest of our life whether it be Jesus Christ coming for His church or our passing on to glory through death to be with the Jesus Christ forever. As you probably know I hold the position that this is not easy but difficult.



One of the points Paul may have been trying to make is the more fruitful we are in good works the greater ability we will have in increasing in the knowledge of God. Just like life is always in motion God desires us in spiritual movement to strive forward in our spiritual walk with Jesus Christ. If we stay stagnant were not giving the Holy Spirit a lot of room to work in our heart.



Paul wanted them strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power. If we have spiritual life we need spiritual strength. For this to happen we need to be empowered by the grace of God for our good works and strengthened by the Holy Spirit for our labor to God but also a guard against evil. I hope you are seeing this is a two way relationship with a Christian and God.



This is one passage that gives us several examples that we as believers in Jesus Christ must corporate with God because if we do not we will go in the opposite direction away from God. This is why I say (1) this is not easy and (2) we are always in a process of getting right with God. We already got saved through Jesus Christ but these principles take diligence. If you think Christians can be passive you need to understand the only believers in Jesus Christ that walk right with God are those that count the cost and obey God through faith in Jesus Christ.



By the way we are strengthened in Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit, not ourselves. If we are strengthened in ourselves it becomes --- look at me. Our lives must revolve around the Person of Jesus Christ. In our journey through earth this grace is for our innocence and our trials but on a divine level it is for His glorious power. Obviously we should pray that we are victorious in Jesus Christ.



Let me make this very simple. If we have the grace of God by experience in our hearts this is the power of God. We all have weaknesses but if we want to communicate strength it has to be in His power for His glory.



Paul gets more specific regarding this subject of strength in all patience and long - suffering but with the joy of the Lord. We need to be strengthened because we do have troubles in life but on our part we need patience and long - suffering. Not having patience is like quitting and long - suffering is having the same spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ.



Our trials are actually a gift from God and we are to be grateful to Him for those hardships. If we just glided through life with no problems we would forget about Jesus Christ and walk straight into hell apart from Him. The bottom line is we are to bear with our trial as long as God desires us to be long - suffering. The trouble and time is the business of God but the patience and long - suffering is our decision. I know most Christians do not think this way but the mere fact that we are accounted worthy to suffer for His name is supposed to be joy. Do you really think we could do this in our own strength?



In verse twelve Paul urges us to give thanks to God the Father. Keep in mind the apostle is praying for the Colossians but we draw wisdom from this intercession for our lives. Grace and thanksgiving go hand in hand. Paul reminds them that they were delivered from the power of darkness. This means we were saved from the bondage of sin. We were translated into the kingdom of Jesus Christ. This is light and purity. This means we were in the possession of the devil at one point in our life. Now that we are saved through Jesus Christ we are in the possession of the Son of God so obviously keep abiding in Jesus Christ every day or the branch will be cut off from the vine.



Paul talks about the inheritance of the saints or Christians in verse twelve. God gives grace and glory but more specifically His glory is the inheritance of the saints in light. This is an inheritance that belongs to us but let us never forget that it is a gift from God.



This is obviously not darkness but the Light of God. The grace of God meets us and makes us eligible for this heavenly inheritance. We are partakers because we were designed for heaven and are being prepared for our eternal home. Are we still upset with our trials with this biblical truth? If we are a child of God we need to be educated in our hardships because we are His sons. It does cost us when we are struggling with problems but God says He will give us payment in our inheritance through His Son Jesus Christ if we endue patiently through Him.



The Apostle Paul talks about Jesus Christ being our Redeemer. Paul writes about the Son of God as distinctly as God and being our Mediator. In verse fourteen this verse says, "In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins." Colossians 1:14. If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins I would strongly urge you to do this and invite the Son of God into your life. We that have accepted Jesus Christ into our life have redemption through His blood and our sins are forgiven. Nobody else can do this for you so of course I am hoping and praying that you just made this all important eternal prayer but the choice is your decision. I can not imagine Jesus Christ not being in my heart and life.



God Bless you,

Bob D.



SO MANY BLESSINGS ONLY GOD COULD COUNT THEM

So many blessings that only God could count them

Paul states his position before God that he is an Apostle of Jesus Christ but only by the will of God. If we have a position in the kingdom of God it better be sanctioned by the Triune Godhead. Paul does not forget Timothy his brother in Christ. They had a very close relationship with each other and their bond has always been very positive in a warm way unlike Mark who Paul seemed to have some fundamental problems with as a person. If we have a special bond with a Christian please do not take it for granted. Tell that brother or sister that you appreciate him or her.



Paul acknowledges to the Christians and all the faithful brethren of Christ in Colosse and he gives the most gracious response by saying ... "Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." They were obedient to God so he blessed them which is just one more addition to the warmness of God if we desire to follow His Son Jesus Christ.



Paul felt so good about this fellowship that he actually gave thanks to God because he was so encouraged and he made sure he prayed for them always so we should engage in the same thing. If a person comes to my mind I will try and pray for them; however, I am so busy that the outcome is not always ideal if you know what I mean. I also want to point out that Paul speaks a little more simple to Colosse as opposed to the Philippians because he had direct contact with the latter but Epaphras had far more hands on ministry with the Colossians.



An example of what I just said is ... "Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus"... this is evidence that Paul had to go by reliable hearsay from good sources but I believe he really got excited when love was so present in this fellowship to all Christians. We really need to follow this same great example of the Colosse fellowship.



Paul was so optimistic at their spiritual progress that he talked about their hope laid up for them in heaven which we all as Christians should have; however, if we do not have this hopeful truth in our life more than likely some kind of sin/sins is present in our journey and we need to deal with our transgressions.



Paul reminds them that they were incredibly blessed to be presented with the gospel of Jesus Christ to begin with but also adds that this very world was receiving the saving message of the Son of God. Paul explains that they were very fruitful for God but it was because they heard the correct message from the very beginning and they kept abiding in Jesus Christ with both inward and outward obedience to God.



Paul then acknowledges their pastor Eparphras who he referred to as a fellowservant. A minister is the boss of the church but first and foremost this person of God is a servant. This pastor was able to give a good report to Paul that the Colosse church had love in their spirit. We need to check our spirit everyday and make sure we have the love of God in our spirit. Let me quote Colossians 1:1-8 so you can read the original text and perhaps refer back to this passage in the Bible.



(1) " Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, (2) To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. (3) We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying for you, (4) Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, (5) For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; (6) Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth: (7) As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ; (8) Who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit." Colossians 1:1-8.



Paul refers to himself as an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God not only because it was true but because I believe he desired to do his best. I joke around with myself because the hardest part of my job is getting to work because I know it will be a difficult time all day long. I say, "Go to work" and this other part of me says no but I always talk myself into going because I know I have to make a living and put food on the table.



When I arrive at work I just fall into character and I really want to do a good job. We may grumble a little when Jesus asks us to do something very difficult. Christians are not supposed to do this but we are human with doubts and insecurities. Every time I stepped out in faith I desired to do an extra great job because my heart was in the right place with the whole Triune Godhead. I am sure the Apostle Paul wrestled with all these emotions but when our spirit is right with God things will fall into place and divine truths will begin to unfold as we step out in obedience to Him.



Paul and Timothy worked together and he even saw him as a son but here he calls him brother. I only have one non relative that calls me son and not only do we have a friendship but she has seen me in several visions which most of the time gave me encouragement. There was only one time that the Lord allowed her to see me in a horrible light at one of my worst moments. Well at the very least it made me think and that is when I personally do my best in a serious state of thought. I do not believe everything is as simple as most people in my life come across but that is just the way I am as a person.



Paul calls the Christians in Colosse saints and the faithful brethren in Christ. The most favorite expression that Paul enjoyed using so many times was, "In Christ." This should give us a clue that as believers in Jesus Christ we are to be focusing on being, "In Christ." What better way to live but if we sense that we are drifting away from this our God is gracious enough to bring us back into proper fellowship with His Son because He sees our heart. God understands we live in a world that has virtually nothing to do with His Son Jesus Christ. It is His pleasure and delight to bring us back into an abiding relationship with His Son which by the way was the Apostle John's most favorite biblical expression (abide in Jesus Christ). Two different sayings but they both mean the same thing.



As I already explained Paul says to the church at Colosse that they are brothers and saints. It was Paul's way of saying I want you to be good to Christians (brothers/sisters) and faithful to God (saints). Faithfulness and character go hand in hand with our Christian life. Since our journey as believers in Jesus Christ down here on earth is a test of character we might as well be faithful in obedience to God. Paul also wishes them grace and peace which is the full favour of God and all the blessings that come with this wonderful gift.



Paul gives thanks to them because he had a high appreciation for them but also understood that all good comes to us through God. He said in essence you have faith in Jesus Christ, love for the brethren and then Paul tells the Colossians their hope is laid up for them in heaven. Notice how simple this is --- faith in Jesus Christ, love for the brethren and hope laid up for you in heaven. Faith, hope and love are the three graces in our Christian life. The more we fix our hope of reward in heaven the more we will be free of our earthly treasure which can be bondage if we do not see this as a gift from God.



Paul talks about the word of truth of the gospel which is the grace of God in truth through His Son Jesus Christ. Verse six simply says if we have the Son of God in our hearts we should tell other people. Why keep it to yourself unless you are living like the devil which will bring more harm than good?



The moral is we should be living right and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ to a dying world because most of the time they don't even know they are perishing and on their way to the horrible place. Most people think everything is right with themselves and God but they do not even know Jesus Christ. They have been blinded. If you have not accepted Jesus Christ into your heart as your very own personal Savior and Lord then now may be a good time to repent of all your sins and invite the Son of God into your life. I certainly hope you just made that all important eternal decision.



Paul calls Epaphras who was the teacher at the church of Colosse a faithful minister and a fellow - servant. They were co- laborers in the work of the Lord especially since they were engaged in the same service for Jesus Christ. The minister or the members at the church of Colosse did not have a problem with the spirit of love. This is given to us by the Holy Spirit if we are willing to receive this wonderful gift of God.



God Bless you,

Bob D.

GOOD VERSUS EVIL

Good verses evil


I will be going over Jude 1:16-25. Jude seems to be going over popular personalities that had center stage and were way off to the point that they were so far away from the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. If you are like the average person being off to the side in life you do not fit in this category as you travel through life; however, this passage is still applicable for you.



It is interesting to me that verse sixteen starts out with these people being murmurers (that is how they spelled this word in that day) or complainers. I have seen many of these people but I never personally made the connection. Their not content with themselves, other people or God. I hope you are starting to see motive.



They walk after their own lusts and may I say without conscience so there is no room for God in their life. If we as Christians walk after our own lusts the presence of the Holy Spirit is less if at all so we would have to repent of our sins. The people that I mentioned at the top of the paragraph don't even care and move to the next step.



They speak great swelling words which is almost a lie every single time. When we as true Christians talk we have to be very honest in a Godly way. We can be honest in a controversial way or at the expense of someone else but that is not acceptable to God. These people at the top of the paragraph just lie. True Christians have been told from the beginning to be honest before God and other people.



They have to move to the next step of becoming mockers and once again Jude repeats himself that it is still because they are walking after their own lusts. This should give us an extra clue that we as Christians are not to be walking after our own lusts.



Jude mentions a third time that they are separating themselves in a sensual way and they don't have the Holy Spirit living inside of them; however, we do and desire His full presence. Jude encourages us to build ourselves in our faith in Jesus Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit. We are also told to keep ourselves in the love of God and look for the mercy of Jesus Christ in our lives. He also keys on compassion and how special that can be especially in a world like this where most people do not even care. Let us Christians be the ones that care for people. Individuals still have a choice to accept or reject Jesus Christ into their lives but that is a different subject.



Jude finally gets to two of the most popular verses at the end of this New Testament book. God desires to keep us from falling and present us faultless ... "Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy."



In the last verse praise is giving to the only wise God our Savior, be glory, majesty, dominion and power both now and forever. I will quote the original text in the book of Jude so you can read this passage and perhaps make reference to it for this particular Bible study.



(16) "These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men's persons in admiration because of advantage. (17) But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; (18) How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts. (19) These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit. (20) But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, (21) Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. (22) And of some have compassion, making a difference: (23) And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh. (24) 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, (25) To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen." Jude 1: 16-25.



Jude gets somewhat detailed on the character of these evil men. They are seducers but murmur and complain at the very least on the inside. They have bad character, they are weak but very wicked. They usually are very angry at most situations. The world is almost always wrong and nothing is ever good enough for them. Their will, appetite and fun are all they seem to care about so just be the exact opposite of these people.



The people that Jude was writing to were well taught in the word of God. They had strong faith but the Apostle had to remind them in a convincing way that if they listened to these people their trust in Jesus Christ would turn to self.



We can tell if we are being properly guided if the leaders truly love us as Christians. A hard spirit and bitter words might persuade some people but they have no discernment.



We also need to have faith that in the midst of all this evil Jesus Christ will keep His promises and maintain His church. I noticed that the more Christians are ridiculed or even persecuted the stronger believers in Jesus Christ seem to be armed in a spiritual way because under these trials strength and firmness in Jesus Christ prevail.



Jude seems to imply that these evil people are sensual and do not have the Spirit of God. They are not holy in Jesus Christ. When we see this we should be even more determined to have sound doctrine in Jesus Christ and be of good conversation which is the way we live in the world. We should be all the more determined to continue in truth and holiness.



Let me make this simple. If we already laid our foundation in our faith in Jesus Christ we have to build upon it because that is abiding in Jesus Christ. If we live by the right Godly principles we will stand any test even in a fiery trial under or being influenced by evil men.



Jude also talks about praying in the Holy Ghost. Prayer is our nurse for our faith in Jesus Christ. When we pray in the Power of the Holy Spirit there is a pretty good chance that we will receive guidance and influence from God.



Jude also tells us to keep ourselves in the love of God. If we do this we have to keep ourselves in the ways of God but the key is to continue in the love of Jesus Christ.



Jude also talks about mercy. Eternal life through Jesus Christ is all about compassion. This is our only plea before God because we can not get to heaven by our merit. Jesus Christ is our Redeemer but it is by His mercy that we were saved through His precious blood. These truths are pertinent to remember when we go back to the main theme Jude is trying to portray. A faith that is alive in the Person of Jesus Christ has the advantage to mortifying our lusts we struggle with in life.



Jude directs the strong Christians on how to behave toward believers in Jesus Christ that are steeped in error or people that are just plain false. I am at verse twenty two and twenty three. We should do everything we can to rescue these people out of the bait of Satan. We are our brother's keeper but this involves compassion which makes all the difference in the world for heaven.



Once again I have to put this in this article just similar to a previous writing that was already posted. We have to distinguish between the weak minded/hearted and willful sin.



I have found that tenderness with boundaries is so desired to the weak Christian because this world lacks mercy. When I was young and weak I did not appreciate people especially Christians being harsh or severe to me because it just put me into more of a depression. Being hard to the stumbling Christian when they are trying does not mix with one another because it usually causes more harm than good.



Jude talks about others saved with fear pulling them out of the fire. Should we frighten people out of their sins if they are willful? The answer is yes. I am not saying the person that is not sinning willfully does not have to get right with God through His Son Jesus Christ but there is something spiteful about willful sin. They might have good intentions but lack the fear of God. They need to reclaim their once strong faith in the Son of God. The truth about the conscience is it is like a rubber band. The more we sin the bigger the rubber band expands and at some point it becomes willful.



Jude writes something very perfect after all this by saying ... " Hating even the garment spotted by the flesh." God has such high standards for His children that we are to keep ourselves at a huge distance from what is sin or appears to be evil. We sometimes forget this fact but look at it this way --- if the world demands perfection (and it does) how much more should we desire to please God?



Jude really ends this book by giving glory to our Great God. This is such a positive way to end these last two verses. God is both able and willing to keep us from falling into sin.



Can you imagine if we served a God that desired us to fall into transgressions? Jesus Christ died for our sins on the cross. I personally confess my known and unknown sins every day but I need to make a point. Even on my best day of righteousness in the Person of Jesus Christ my works would still be seen as filthy rags and it would not get me into heaven. What I am saying is I am at fault with my sins before God but in true repentance to God through His Son Jesus Christ my transgressions will not be imputed to my account.



When Jude says ... "Before the presence of His glory" ... doesn't that just put goose bumps in your soul? Jude is going from get your sins right before God because we as Christians are destined to be in His presence of His glory. On earth it is the object of our faith but in heaven it will be the object of our sense. We believe in Him now but we will see Jesus Christ soon in heaven. If we allow Jesus Christ to take care of our sin problem the reason why we can face the Son of God with exceeding joy is because we will be presented faultless before Him. If there is no sin there is no sorrow so why do we mess around with transgressions down here on earth? If we are going to be perfectly holy in Jesus Christ it is pretty obvious that we will have exceeding joy in heaven.



If God loved us so much by sending His Son to die for our sins we should want to try everyday to be holy. Jude concludes that God is worthy to receive glory, majesty, dominion and power to the which I say Amen. We should be giving the Triune Godhead this now but we will be engaged in this forever.



If you are struggling with sins now join the club. Let me ask you a question. Are you sincere about getting right with Jesus Christ by repenting of all your sins? Do you know this takes courage? This is the very least we can do based on what Jesus Christ did for us past tense, is doing for us present tense and does not want our sins imputed to us at the day of judgment future tense. Sin causes hardship but living holy in the Person of Jesus Christ allows us to have a destiny with exceeding joy.



If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting the Son of God into your heart I believe Jude puts on a really good case as to why this is eternally pertinent to our life and destiny in Paradise. If you just made that decision be glad but also abide in Jesus Christ and live a holy life. If we sin/sins we need to repent and try our best to forsake our transgressions but remember it is for our exceeding joy in Jesus Christ now and forever in heaven.



God Bless you,

Bob D.