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Friday, June 28, 2013

The New Covenant

Hebrews 8:6

For finding fault with Him, He saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah;

For the sake of this discussion we will provide a brief definition of covenant, which is an agreement between two people, but for today's discussion a covenant, is an agreement between God and man where God set the terms and each person decides whether to abide by the terms set forth by God. Those who obeyed the terms they were blessed whereas if the terms were disobeyed then punishment followed. This was witnessed throughout Israel's history and this principle applies today.
The Old Covenant was based on grace, law and obedience while the New Covenant is based on grace through Jesus Christ. Under the Old Covenant/Testament was one of promises, but the New Covenant/Testament is one of fulfillment through Christ (Galatians 3:8-29), both are gifts of God's grace. The New Covenant was written in the hearts of man so man would know God personally, while the Old Covenant was written on stones and tables which provided the opportunity for misplacement. The New Covenant was established by Christ Himself and provides for the forgiveness of sin while the Old Covenant pointed to the gravity of sin and its consequences. Under the Old Covenant animal blood was sacrificed while the New Covenant Christ's blood was shed as He was the sacrificial lamb slain from the foundation of the world and this was God's redemptive plan.
The New and everlasting covenant.
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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Christ Our Priestly Intercessor

Hebrews 8:1

…We have a high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens.

Christ is our priestly intercessor because of His atoning work on behalf of believers. Let us look at some of Christ's ministry as our high priest and they are:
He took on man's sin punishment by willingly giving His life to redeem man.
He is in heaven in the presence of God on behalf of believers to bestow God's grace upon all believers.
He mediated a new and better covenant where God's moral laws are written in the hearts of man. This establishes a personal relationship with God.
He sympathizes with believers in their temptations and aids them in their needs (2:18; 4:15-16).
Christ mediates on behalf of believers who have broken God's moral laws and forgives them.
Christ makes permanent intercession for believers who come to Him in faith and He will bring the believers' final fulfillment of salvation (7:25).
Christ is the only high priest believers will need as He replaced the earthly priests of the OT. He established the New Covenant which superseded the Old Covenant. He is alpha and omega and He is the lamb that was slain before the foundation of the world for the purpose of redeeming man.
Christ our high priest who sees all can do and knows all.

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Friday, June 21, 2013

Live According To God's Will

James 4:13-15

Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain; For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live and do this or that.

Today's topical discussion is one that my mother taught me in words and action in that she would always say if it is the Lord's will I will do thus and so. That being said, James is teaching a valuable lesson in being dependent on the Lord and living according to the will of God as His will and ways are far better than those of man.
It also behooves all mankind and especially believers to align his or her will with that of God when making plans or setting future goals. It is noteworthy to say that God has a perfect will and purpose for all our lives; therefore, we must commit to knowing and doing the perfect will of God. The perfect will of God is that all be saved and live for His good purpose which is to worship, praise and serve Him though holy living.  In our model prayer we are asked to petition that God's will be done (Matthew 6:10); in doing so we acknowledges God sovereignty. It is noteworthy to say that aligning our will with that of God is assuring ourselves of salvation, His protective care, and establish intimate relationship and living in His presence.
We can live according to God's will once we know His will and humbly submit ourselves to doing His will.
Know, do and live according to the will of God.
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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Chosen Of God

I Peter 2:4

To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious.

Today's scripture text speaks of Christ Jesus being the chosen of God, but for our discussion purposes we will focus on believers being the chosen of God as His holy nation of people. It is noteworthy to say, whom God choose it matters not if man hates us as members of God's family. This is because God is all wise and is too wise to make a mistake. That being said, God chooses whom He pleases to become His adopted sons and daughter and His royal priests (v. 5).
Just as God the Father choose His only begotten Son to be the Savior of the world, He knew that man would scorn His Son; God knew that His chosen believers would be scorn by this world as it stand in stark opposition to God's moral laws. Let me say, just as Christ our Savior remained true to His mission so must believers to our commission of witnessing Christ the world  over (Matthews 28: 19-20).
Believers being the chosen of God were predestined to be His elected from the foundation of the world just as Jesus were the chosen of God to be the Savior of the world. That being said, nothing takes God by surprise or is an afterthought.
Believers, being the chosen of God are a blessing beyond comparison and our salvation is assured.
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Friday, June 14, 2013

God My Salvation

Exodus 15:2

The Lord is my strength and song, and He is become my salvation; He is my God, and I will prepare Him a habitation; my father's God, and I will exalt Him.

Exodus 1-18 is considered the song of Moses as he sang praises to God for the victory at the Red Sea. God gave directions to His servant Moses to lead the children of Israel out of slavery under the tyrant Pharaoh. God's method of deliverance is mightier than any man-made army as this was witnessed at the Red Sea when Pharaoh's men were drowned in the Red Sea and God made a highway of dry land of the Red Sea for His people to pass through safely.
Picture in your mind the Red Sea opening up and the water walled up on each side as an embankment and the people walking safely through. God's deliverance of Israel can be viewed as a foreshadowing of the coming Messiah Jesus Christ who would save all men from sin through His death, burial and resurrection.
As we look forward to the future Satan is a defeated foe as God in His divine plan were not going to allow Satan to defeat His prize creation-man. It is noteworthy to say that yes many will follow Satan and spend eternity tormented because of their failure to accept God's plan of salvation, but let me be clear there will be more saints in God's army than Satan's. In accepting God's plan of salvation, believers recognized that yes God is the God of this universe, He is my creator, sustainer and Savior and yes He has the power to deliver.
God is my deliverer and salvation, whom shall I fear (Psalm 27:1).

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Monday, June 10, 2013

Greed Of The Wicked

Psalm 10:8-10

He siteth in the lurking places of the villages; in the secret places doth he murder the innocent; his eyes are privily set against the poor. He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den; he lieth in wait to catch the poor; he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net. He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones.

Today's message is applicable to the evil conditions that are occurring in our nation today. I make this claim because the out of control drug trafficking, alcohol and substance abuse and the negative affects it has on our respective communities. More families have been destroyed by this evil and the emotional scars and the destruction that is left on families, communities and our churches are grievous. The devastating affects will be felt for years. Drug traffickers prey on the young, poor and the vulnerable without regard to the negative affects his or her evil business will cause.
We see oppressive acts in other areas of our society such as some of our wealthier American taking advantage of the less fortunate and see no harm in doing so and show little to no compassion for the less fortunate. These individuals fail to realize that one day they will be held accountable by God and their final end will be destruction.
These questions come to mind, What is the motivating factor behind such evil and wrong doings? Greed and a lack of compassion are motivating factors in acts of oppression and other wrong doings. These individuals want to be some kind of god and will stop at noting to make themselves superior to all whom they can control.  What are the less fortunate and young to do? Those persons must know they are being targeted by the evildoers and do not have their best interest at heart.
 Keep control of your mind; put your trust in God; there is a better day ahead. Education is the key to a better tomorrow.
Today's wicked deeds are forms modern day slavery, recognize them for what they are.
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Friday, June 7, 2013

"Delight Yourself In The Lord"

Psalm 37:1-9

Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalth thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself also in the Lord; and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

 Yesterday we reflected on the evilness that is facing our nation today and compared it to that of Jeremiah's time as he cried out for the people to repent just as God's spokespersons are doing today. Our focus today is to provide encouragement to all believers who see and weep for the spiritual apostasy that our country has fallen into.
Let's say that conditions would be far worse if the church had been raptured and conditions will be far worse when Christ takes His church out of the earth. While we are still in the earth we must take delight in the Lord because He is in control and nothing escapes His all seeing eye. Also, take comfort in knowing that in God's own time He is going to bring an end to this evilness. As stated in our scripture text evildoers will be cut down like grass. God's Word is true and sure and as stated the righteous will "dwell in the land."
What are believers to do? We are going to keep praying for the conditions of this nation, others and self; keep walking the ways of God; keep His commandments; keep proclaiming His Word while calling for repentance; keep being the light in a sin-darkness world while enjoy being in His presence and fellowshipping with Him.
There is joy and delight in the Lord and His protection is sure.
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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Evil Bring Devastation Upon the Nation

Jeremiah 9:1-26

And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies; but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and for they know not me, saith the Lord. Take ye heed every one of his neighbor, for every brother will utterly supplant, and every neighbor will walk with slander.

If the question was raised, Why discuss the evilness and devastation that is facing our nation? Let's reflect on the prophet Jeremiah and his weeping for the nation of Israel and the sins he witnessed. The more Jeremiah cried out to the people for them to repent the more the people rebelled against God.
That being said, today we are witnessing all manner of sin and evil and it appears that the greater the sin the more people strives to wallow in sin. The louder God's spokespersons cry out for repentance the deeper this country sinks into to spiritual apostasy. These questions come to mind, How did this happen when this nation was founded upon godly principles? Has this country forgotten its first love-God the Father, Jesus Christ our Savior and the Holy Spirit who lives inside of us? Does this current generation believe there is a God the one who created the heavens and earth? There is a God and He is real and alive. Does modern day man believe God will punish sin? Yes He will and does punish sin just at He did to the nation of Israel during the Bible days. He surely will punish this nation. His anger is being witnessed through the many natural disasters that are being heaped upon this country. Many will say it is because of climate change; let's be clear nothing is out of God's control and His permissive will. God's perfect will is that for all men to be saved and be in fellowship with Him, but if rebellion continues He will turn you over to a reprobate mind. Romans 1:24-32 describes God's response to the degeneration of man in his evil ways.
God's word is going to stand forever, believe it or not. Just as He punished sin in the past His judgment is forth coming. Repent and be saved or reject God and His Word and perish.
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