July 21, 2015
We don’t serve God by following a checklist, but by living under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Legalism does not please God as it only reveals more of our unrighteousness and prideful hearts. This “newness” of serving God in the Spirit is not about effort or earning, but believing and receiving. Those who have identified with Christ’s death and resurrection have the law once inscribed in stone, now written on their hearts. They now are able to “serve,” to worship God, in Spirit and truth in newness of heart.
July 19, 2015
Love demonstrated is greater than love spoken. Yet, God has done both through Christ Jesus. He is the Logos, the greatest and fullest communication of God and God’s love to us. He is love in the flesh. He is love that left heaven to become one of us, so that He might die for us. He did all of this not because we were deserving of love, but because He is love. And His character of love intersected His character of holiness in Christ at the cross making a way for us to know and love Him in return (1 John 4:19).
July 18, 2015
This is the doctrine of justification. One way to remember this doctrine is the saying, “Just-as-if-I-never-sinned.” This is about God’s justice and our judicial position before Him. In Christ, we are justified. By faith, the righteousness of Christ is accounted unto us, while our sin is accounted unto Him. This is more than just clearing our criminal record and getting us out of jail free. It is accounting unto us the status of righteousness, reconciling us to God and making possible our adoption as sons. The Judge has not only released us from prison, but has taken us home with Him to live in His house as family.
July 16, 2015
Two important words concerning salvation are named here: “Redemption” and “propitiation.” Redemption means that we been purchased out of slavery to sin by Christ offering Himself as our ransom. He took our sin and offers His righteousness to us. Propitiation means that Christ satisfied God’s judgment and wrath towards our sin by taking it upon Himself. He took our death and offers us His eternal life. These two great doctrines of salvation are worthy of our constant wonder and meditation. How great is the mercy and love of God that He has shown through Christ Jesus!
July 12, 2015
Today is my 57th birthday. I plan to celebrate it by preaching the gospel at both Sunday services at WCC today. I can’t think of a better way to acknowledge this annual milestone than to offer the gift of eternal life to others. Perhaps someone will hear and believe today, and so this will become their birthday too.
July 21, 2014
We don’t serve God by following a checklist, but by living under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Legalism does not please God as it only reveals our unrighteousness and prideful hearts. This “new way” of living is not about effort or earning, but believing and receiving. Those who have found the “new way” have the law once inscribed in stone, now written on their hearts. This “new way” frees us to truly serve God.
July 20, 2014
“Consider yourselves” dead to sin. Not trying, nor working, but counting yourself dead to that sin which once enslaved you. And in the same breath consider yourself “alive to God.” Calling upon the Name of Jesus who paid the price for your adoption, be filled with the Spirit and walk in His power. Stop wearing the grave clothes. Arise, come forth! Put on clothes of righteousness and live!
July 18, 2014
When there was no physical or circumstantial reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping in God’s promise. What is hope? It is the feeling of expectation that a desirable outcome will take place in the future. But Abraham had more than just a positive feeling. He had hope in God. Having his hope anchored in God’s promises and God’s goodness, Abraham never stopped believing, in fact his hope and faith increased as the years went by.
July 17, 2014
Paul quoted David’s psalm (Psa. 32:1-2) to support his explanation about how being made right with God is not by works, but by faith alone. When we place our faith in Christ and receive forgiveness and salvation, His blood not only covers our sin, it washes it away. Our “record” is “cleared.” The Lord did not clear them by merely erasing them. This would not satisfy His justice. No. He cleared our record by charging our sin to Jesus’ record, so that God’s wrath and justice was poured out on Christ. There is now no condemnation left for us who believe (Rom. 8:1). What joy! Our record is cleared of sin!