Sunday, 30 April 2017

ALL SIN IS AGAINST GOD


“Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight,” 
(Psalm 51:4, ESV).

This Psalm is attributed to David’s sin of adultery with Bathsheba and the murder of her husband Uriah. Yet, here in today’s text we read that his sin is against God alone. Now how can this be, seeing David is the one who sinned against Uriah, by committing adultery against him with his wife, then to top it off had him killed on the battlefield? Though David had personally sinned against both Uriah and Bathsheba, strange as this may seem, all sin is against God. Why? Well, that’s because we bare the image of God and are responsible to Him. Sin committed against others is never a singular sin, it is always plural in that the sin maybe against someone or yourself, yet at the same time it is against God as well. For all sin is against a Holy God. This is where genuine brokenness, confession, and repentance over the sin or sins we committed is necessary to restore fellowship with our God. Then we need to seek forgiveness from anyone we have sinned against, and then forgive ourselves as well. Sometimes this may not be easy, but it is necessary if we want to experience genuine or uninterrupted peace in our relationships with God, man, and ourselves. So as you, dear reader go about your day today, remember, all sin is against God and not just your fellow man. 

Heavenly Father, we often don’t think about the sins we commit against our neighbor as sinning against you, and you alone. Thanks for reminding us of this truth in David’s words in Psalm 51. With renewed determination and trust in You O Lord, we forsake our fleshy ways to embrace “The way, the truth, and the life” (John14:6) that is in Christ. In the precious name of Christ we pray. Amen.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

GOD'S HOLINESS AND IT'S INFLUENCE



“Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?” 
(Exodus 15:11, ESV).


The Lord is absolutely Holy, there is no spot of sin in Him. Because He is Holy, His presence has a profound effect upon us. We can’t help but be changed and transformed by His very presence. When we spend time alone with our Lord in prayer, His Word, and meditation, like a search light in the darkness, His Holy presence exposes and convicts us of sin, as well as humble us to our need of God’s help. There are a few Biblical saints as well as non-believers who were affected by God’s Holy presence. Job said, “I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you; therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” (Job 42:5-6, ESV); Asaph realized, “until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end.” (Psalm 73:17, ESV); Isaiah proclaimed, “And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!” (Isa. 6:5, ESV); Peter cried, “But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” (Luke 5:8, ESV); even the officers were affected, when they said, The officers answered, “No one ever spoke like this man!”  (John 7:46, ESV); Pilate declared, “See, I am bringing him out to you that you may know that I find no guilt in him.”  (John 19:4, 6, ESV); and Peter and John’s boldness, “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.” (Acts 4:13, ESV).

Friday, 31 March 2017

THE MYTH OF JESUS HAVING LONG HAIR



“Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?” (1 Corithians 11:14, KJV).


Here in America, we have many pictures that promote the myth that the Lord Jesus was a handsome caucasion Jesus. This of course contradicts the Bible that tells us that the Lord Jesus Christ was a first Century man born from Middle Eastern Jewish parents. Even more, these pictures always seem to depict Jesus as having long hair. The question is, did Jesus have long hair? According to the Apostle Paul, it is a shame for a man to have long hair. So here we see the Apostle in 1 Corinthians 11 teaching about headship and how that long hair on a man is disgraceful. So long hair is a glory to a woman, but a disgrace to a man. Some may argue here, yeah, but Jesus had long hair? If He did, why do the first Century Christian men have to have short hair? Great questions. Do not many paintings by artists depict Jesus having long hair as already alluded to earlier? Yes, they do, but many of these paintings depict Jesus as a handsome Caucasian man, when in reality, he was a first Century Middle Eastern Jewish man. Scripture tells us that Jesus was a plain looking man (Isa. 53:3), not known for His good looks, nor is there any indication He had long hair. Now he did have short hair and a beard. That much is clear from the Scriptures. The Bible on the other hand, is silent on Jesus having long hair.

Thursday, 30 March 2017

THE COMING OF CHRIST MOCKED?



“But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” 
(Matthew 24:36, ESV).


There is a popular quote I seen recently on a sign a few feet away from a local Church in the city I live in. It reads: “Jesus is coming, look busy!” I have also seen this same quote read, “Look busy, Jesus is coming!” I’m sure the minister of that local Church means well. No doubt, the quote was meant in humor. Yet, when one thinks about the phrase “Look busy” there appears an air of mockery in it. It seems to make light of, or trivializes the coming of Christ. I can’t help but wonder what non-Christians think when they read this message on a Church sign? Again, no doubt, some unbelievers will smile and scoff at such words. Peter describes these people in these words: “Knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. They will say, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.”  (2 Pet. 3:3-4, ESV). To millions of Christians around the world, “the coming of Christ” is the believer’s hope. Three times we read in the book of Revelations these words of Christ: “Behold, I am coming quickly,” “And behold, I am coming quickly,” and finally, “Surely, I am coming quickly.” (Rev. 22:7, 12, 20). The term “behold” in verses 7, 12 emphasizes the truth “pay attention to,” while “surely” means “of a certainty.” Now the term “quickly” seen in all three verses does not mean right away or immediately as one would think. No, for there are prophecies that need to be fulfilled before that great and notable day. 

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

MAN’S TRIUNE NATURE RESTORED


“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 
(1 Thessalonians 5:23, NASB).


Yesterday we dealt with man’s triune nature fallen. Today we will look at man’s triune nature restored. Scripture makes it clear that man “are all under sin” (Rom. 3:9, NASB). “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned” (Rom. 5:12, NASB). So how does one become clean from sin, when all are under sin? Well, since man is under the curse of sin, there is nothing he can do to rectify the matter. However, there is a Saviour who can. What is impossible for man is possible with God. (To be continued...)

Sunday, 26 February 2017

MAN’S TRIUNE NATURE FALLEN


“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 
(1 Thessalonians 5:23, NASB).

Man consists of a spirit, soul, and body. Man’s spirit is the highest part of his being. This is his God-conscious part of his nature. This is the part that gives him an awareness of God, the ability to pray and communicate with Him. It is this part that separates him from the animals. Next, man’s soul is the middle part of his being. It is the self-conscious part of his nature. This part of his nature is his self awareness. It is the seat of his personality, emotions, and will. Lastly, we have man’s body, which is his lowest part of his being. This part is his world-conscious nature. If he stubs his big toe on a piece of furniture, he’s going to be aware of the sensation of physical pain. Now before man fell through sin, his spirit was very much alive in relationship to God with his soul and body following suit. Man’s spirit before the fall lead the soul and body in perfect harmony, but when man fell through sin his spirit fell in the realm of his soul, and his soul fell in the realm of his body. This resulted in man’s body, or his flesh leading and dictating his decisions and actions of his soul and spirit. This is why people will see Eastern New Age books talking about the reverse order of man’s triune nature as body, soul, and spirit as opposed to the Biblical order of spirit, soul, and body. Mankind is concerned with the lowest part of his base nature—flesh, whereas the faithful Christian is concerned with the highest part of his nature—spirit. Christ says, “I have meat to eat that ye know not of” (John 4:32). Because man is dead in spirit to God, his actions are often controlled by his fleshly appetites and physical surroundings around him.


Heavenly Father, we are made in Your image to reflect Your glory. Just as you are a triune being, so are we. Lord, we are fallen, whereas you are infallible. We are unholy, you are holy. Lord, lead us out of our lower base nature, the flesh that seeks to control our life, but help us instead to walk in the spirit so we will not fulfill the lusts of our flesh. In Christ Jesus name we pray, Amen.

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

FEELING DISSATISFIED? BE SATISFIED IN CHRIST


“Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 
(Hebrews 13:5, ESV).

There are times when I am alone with my thoughts that I experience a sense of dissatisfaction with the things of this present life. For example, my birthday should be a time of celebration for God’s goodness to me over the past year. Yet, I find myself experiencing the hollow dissatisfaction of my Birthday with friends. It's not that I don't appreciate their company, of course I do. Then there is Christmas time and all its commercialism that kills the true meaning of the holiday season. I enjoy each year spending Christmas home with my family, still that sense of being bored or dissatisfied is still with me. It’s like such times have lost their meaning, their freshness and life. Not only that, but it seems I have more of a keen awareness of being dissatisfied with a lot of things in my life. Despite how I feel, I am determined to find my delight in the Lord and Him alone. For true lasting satisfaction can only come from Him. For the Christian, Christmas is much more than jolly feelings during this festive time, it’s about remembering and celebrating the birth of Christ and why He came into the world. Satisfaction is not found in the passing things of this present life, but rather true satisfaction can only be found in the Lord Jesus Christ. The psalmist writes: “For he satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things.” (Psalm 107:9, ESV). See also “The young lions suffer want and hunger; but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.” (Psalm 34:10, ESV); “For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.” (Psalm 84:11, ESV); “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.” (Matt. 5:6, ESV). The term satisfied is expressed in each of these Bible verses mentioned in these key phrases, “satisfies, fills,”  “lack no good thing,” “No good thing does he withhold,” “satisfied.” All this reminds me that God is more than able to satisfy my every need in Christ. As I seek Him I will not lack any good thing from His kind hand. The Lord will not withhold good from those who walk righteously. The promise is to those who hunger and thirst for righteousness shall be filled, satisfied. I desire less of myself and more of Christ, then I will truly be satisfied. 

Lord, it is not always easy to focus on what really matters in life. We easily get distracted. Help us to always be dissatisfied with the paltry things of this life, until we are only satisfied in You. Grant unto us a holy discontent with what stagnates our walk with Christ, while creating a greater holy thirst for Christ alone. For true satisfaction is only found in Him. In Christ most precious name we pray. Amen.