Sunday, August 23, 2015

Just a Thought "42"

In the world, but no longer of the world, because we are now in Christ. The old things beings passed away, does not mean that people in Christ are now sinless at all. Sins are no longer the issue in the mind of God, not when it comes to that which separates the human race from God.

The sin question was settled, we have got to have this established upfront, or we will confuse the Bema and we will confuse being praise worthy of God. Those who accepted this great wonderful news, the message of reconciliation, it is up to us to go to the world to the lost and tell them, God is not counting your sins against you.

The thing that is brand new, those who accept Paul’s good news in this Age of Grace are called a New Creation, but still in this body, and still subject to the same temptations. The Pastors roll is to prepare their people for the Bema, that is what teaching and pastoring is all about. 
Paul’s ministry was distinct, because Paul was the chief, the head architect for the Age of Grace for the building called the Body of Christ. The Bema of Christ, issues with which we need to be concerned, understand God does not want us to be unaware of the evaluation we will face. 
The Bema has to do with the building project, remember whenever we see those words “labour or work” in Paul’s epistle, they are always in direct connection to the Bema of Christ. What is this blueprint? Paul’s epistles are laid out in the manner of Doctrine, Reproof, Correction, issues. 
Paul tells us what those issues are in those epistles, and when it comes to our reward worthiness or not being worthy of reward, Faith, Hope, Love, are the maturity of the believer is all about, and the maturity of the believer is what the evaluation at the Bema of Christ is all about. 
The Bema has to do with the building project. The building is the Body of Christ. We as members of the Body of Christ, are co-labors with God in the building project. The Chief Architect for the building project, the master builder is the apostle Paul. The blueprint for the proper construction of this building has been given to apostle Paul for the work crew of which we are apart. 

If one considers the mind as the engine of understanding, then the engine of understanding must be fueled with the word of God, if it is fueled with emotions, what happens when the fuel runs out?

The Last Days of this Age of Grace, the ever increasing tendency of people to focus their thoughts on self, to be self centered. Satisfy me, satisfy my interest, if people do not satisfy my interest, I will go else where, selfish is as good as term as any.

A major satanic goal is to hide the justification aspect of the good news of the grace of God, the lost include many of the most moral and religious people in history. The natural inclination of religious people is to conceive of salvation as resulting from merit, based on something they can do for God, have done or commit to do for the future.

There are people that live in a state that is opposite of happiness, they always seems to be down, always be angry, always be ready for disappointment. Happiness is a state of mind that can be created, happiness is a state of mind that can be mustered up, happiness is a choice.

There are many who lack joy from not understanding that justification is complete, so we can not look at people and say that person gave their life for what they believed, religious, but lost.

The pride nature in people have a difficult time understanding how righteousness from God’s viewpoint can be granted apart from their conduct or commitment. Performing that which is good and ceasing from that which is bad, is directly related in most people’s minds, especially the religious mindset today to the way that God views a person.

Many people believe they are God, and therefore, they do not need salvation, they need enlightenment. They need to be able to find some way to get in touch with that God that is in them, that God-Spark! And of course, the God-Spark is not stationary.

The God-Spark is moving all the time called “Ying-Yang” in some belief systems. That God-Spark can sometimes just get jammed up, and they need to free it so it can operate, which is what yoga was based on. Currently the fastest growing trend within brief systems that humankind has ever seen, reincarnation is all wrapped up in the Pantheist mind-set, coming back again and again until they get it right, then when a person gets it right, “Nirvana!”

Satan and his clan loves to propagate in the minds of people, they love it when people question God! When people begin to question God, that frees them up to develop their own concept of God and establish their own basis for a relationship with the god that they have invented in their minds.

Our brains are an engine of understanding, our transformation process that is taking place in our lives as we take in the Word of God and apply it to the details of our lives, it is only when we come to properly understand God from his perspective concerning ourselves.

Both before we came to understand Paul’s good news, and then what we are and who we are after we have believed Paul’s good news and have been joined to God’s son, then we can be capable of viewing others and relating to others accordingly who are also members of Christ’s body of his flesh and of his bones. 

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Just a Thought "41"

We are not to cleanse ourselves in order to gain something from God, when it comes to our holy standing before him, or to maintain something before God because we have been freely given something, namely a justified and sanctified position in God’s son, Jesus Christ.

How can those who have been justified freely, sanctified in Jesus Christ, how should we be conducting ourselves? We should conduct ourselves in a manner that goes sides by side or that goes in hand with what God has already called us to do, our ambassadorship of the message of reconciliation.

Paul was teaching grace, plus nothing, and that leads people with a sin nature and pride nature to say, Oh, we have got something! If we do not know what Justification and Sanctification are all about, and we think that we are justified on the basis of how we set ourself apart behaviorally, naturally we want other people to set themselves apart, and we want them to have to tow the mark, as you have to tow the mark to keep God happy.

May grace never be the cause, although grace is true, may grace never be the cause for a person to think they should now go out and sin all the more. May that type of reasoning not cross our minds, that is not the way a believer should be thinking!

People do what they want to do, we have always done what we want to do, and people continue to do what they want to do. We would naturally come to be thinking along those lines, if we fail to have an understanding of Justification and Sanctification.

Do we sin? But, we are dead to sin! Are we supposed to stop sinning? If we understand what the word “sin” means, coming short of God’s Glory, now that we are dead to sin, can we now measure up to God’s Glory? Positional truth, we were dead in sins, because we had our identity in Adam, Adam in rebellion.

We now have a brand new identity, “dead to sin” identity, but those who would die in their sins were those who would continue to have their identity in Adam, Adam in rebellion, understanding identity is key! Failing to understand positional truth will cause much confusion, because we want to go back to practical reality.

It is not probation, it is salvation! Forgiving us is not something God must decide to do, the only reason God could say through Paul, “Grace and Peace be unto you” is because his son fully paid the price. Faith is not something “do I have enough faith, have I believed firmly enough?”

Faith is simply taking your stand where God takes his stand. There are many who will spend an eternity apart from Christ, because they refuse to accept what Christ accomplished on their behalf. God’s given people the choice to reject or just to stand where he does.

Love does not force itself, people have the responsibility of making a decision, will I believe it or will I reject it. What God’s son did for everyone was was sufficient to absolve everyone of our sin debt, past, present, future, it is gone.

It is not a sin issue today, it is a son issue, because Christ died once for all, God’s justice was satisfied, salvation was accomplished, but unfortunately the gift will not be accepted by all. 

To accept the gift, is to receive the gift according to scripture, and to receive it simply means to take it to ones self, or acknowledge something as being true, to believe it. So believe and receive are one in the same thing, when it comes to this gift of salvation.

The fact that Christ did died for all, proves without a doubt that all were indeed dead in trespasses and sins. Paul’s good news must be accepted, it must be believed, understanding the grace of God is an intricate part of the joy, that should really be a part of every believer’s life.

God’s grace has abounded and therefore, the gift has abounded unto the many who were affected by Adam’s sin, Adam’s sin brought sin and death to all, Christ’s righteousness brings the gift of grace to all.

God provided the free gift of justification, because that one sin, provoked the many sins of the human race, but God provided a sufficient gift to solve the dilemma of humankind. To be justified means to receive that gift that came to all; by the one sin, to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offenses, unto justification.

The receiving that must be done as Paul goes on to say, God’s grace has abounded and therefore, the gift has abounded unto the many who were affected by the first Adam’s sin. Being placed into the second Adam, Jesus Christ, joined to Christ is the method whereby God justifies us.

The issue at the Great White Throne Judgment will be those standing there in their own righteousness, and not in God’s righteousness. Many will believe Satan’s message that righteousness comes by way of a person’s efforts, what they merit, what they desire through their performance.

The reality of our reign in life results in the joy, rejoice in hope of the glory of God, consequently, not everyone will end up with the benefits of this gift, because the gift is contingent upon receiving the good news message Paul was delivering.

Satan’s minions today, unknowingly in many cases, are having a hay-day, because they are keeping the issue of sins on the table of God’s justice, when they are no longer on the table of God’s justice.

Everybody believes or supposed to believe in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. That is not the message that saves, it is understanding the meaning of that message that saves today.

Will people accept or reject the payment Jesus Christ made for their redemption? God offers the gift of redemption, it is up to those of the world to either accept or reject their redeemer, but that does no less make Jesus Christ their redeemer.

When we accept our redeemer, and the price he paid, the ransom he paid, then we are joined to Christ, and we have his righteousness attributed to our account. Those who reject the gift, are thumbing their noses at the one who died to paid that price for their redemption.

The sin issue needs to be resolved in our minds, not in God’s. God wants people to look at the sacrifice his son made, and have their minds aligned with his. God wants people to view that sacrifice and say, “If God is satisfied, then I am going to be satisfied with what Christ accomplished for me.”

God wants people to believe the gospel Paul calls the ministry of reconciliation. Paul tells us that those who accept the redeemer, accept the gift of redemption are sealed unto the day of the redemption of that earthly tent in which they dwell, and placed into - at the point of their belief - their savior.

Thereby becoming the recipient of all that belongs to Christ, that includes his righteousness. Now you are worthy. Many people continue in their thinking that their sin is separating them from God, Paul’s gospel is hid from those people, they do not understand his gospel, they do not understand what reconciliation is all about.

So they think that new sin, needs a new measure of reconciliation, they seek forgiveness on the installment plan, is that not the golden thread woven through every denomination out there? The truth is they could not obtain an ounce of forgiveness if they tried, because God has already forgiven them all, God designed it, he provided the means by which it could be accomplished.

That is why Christ’s ambassadors have the responsibility and privilege of making the reality of what the reconciliation Christ’s sacrifice accomplished, known to those who know nothing of it.

We can set ourselves apart all we like, behaviorally speaking, we can start any number of things and cease doing any number of things in order to gain holiness before God, but we will do no better at reaching that goal than the foolish Galatians, who were themselves flirting with the idea of progressive sanctification.

Setting oneself apart for holiness is one thing, setting oneself apart because of the holy standing God has already given that individual in Christ, is something altogether different. We can do great wonders, when it comes to relative righteousness, but measuring up to God’s standard of righteousness?

None of us will ever do so apart from God decreeing that to be so, freely, a gift, the righteousness required to dwell with God or for God to dwell with us. Justification is a gift declaration of perfect righteousness, the very righteousness that belongs to Jesus Christ, given to the ungodly who simply take God at his word, concerning what Christ accomplished for them.

Justification and Sanctification are “much more” assurance  doctrines that Paul is giving us as to the security that we as believers have being placed into Christ. Paul wants to establish our minds in the “much more” assurance that we have, so we can have that stability of mind and stability of emotions, if the will is the governor of the emotions, and it is.

We are called “saints” today, “set apart ones,” that is the word God uses for those who have placed their faith in the all-sufficiency of the sin-resolving sacrifice of his son, Jesus Christ. Saint is God’s word for a believer, he sets us apart, sanctification depends upon the one who is doing the setting apart.

Paul even called the carnal believers at Corinth saints or set apart ones, because even though they were carnal, they had believed Paul’s good news. In fact, our sanctification and being in Christ are one and the same, but the sin nature does not disappear.

If sanctification is not the gradual removal or even the total eradication of the sin nature, if it is not a second work of grace that takes place at or after salvation, we need to look at God’s Word in light of these generally taught misconceptions. So that, we can see if they are correct, and then come to understand what sanctification really is, so that we are not fooled by what sanctification is not!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Our Ambassadorship

The difference between the two Adam’s in our history is the need to be sure we are identifying with the right one. Understanding and acting upon who we are in Jesus Christ is the basis for successful growth and maturity.

Our daily performance is often marked by personal failure and disobedience, which disappoints us and disrupts the harmony of our ambassadorship of God’s reconciliation. In our attempts to understand the disobedience which so often disturbs our ambassadorship, are we unwitting victims of our old identity?

Our old identity which we have inherited from the disobedience of the first Adam, is like a big black dog, but through the redemptive work of the second Adam, Jesus  Christ, God put his power from on high in us, when we got born anew, and that power is like a big white dog.

Whenever we involve ourselves in worldly thoughts or behavior, we are feeding the black dog. Whenever we focus our mind and activities on matters of our ambassadorship, we are feeding the white dog. The dog we feed the most will eventually grow stronger and overpower the other.

God has not given us the power to imitate him, he has made us partakers of his righteousness, so that we can actually dwell with him. He did not say, “Here are my standards, now you measure up.” God knows we cannot solve the problem of our old identity, Adam in rebellion, by simply improving our behavior.

When we choose to walk according to the old identity, in which we were trained before becoming born anew, such behavior violates our ambassadorship. When this happens, we feel convicted because our behavior is not in keeping with who we really are.

In fact, if a person does something which they know is morally wrong, but feels no conviction, we should seriously doubt that that person is part of the Body of Christ. We commit sin when we willfully allow ourselves to act independent of our ambassadorship, as our old identity  did as a matter of course. 

So why do we still react as if our old identity is still in control of our behavior? Because, while we served under it, our old identity trained and conditioned our actions, reactions, emotional responses, thought patterns, memories and habits in our brain. 

Our worldly experiences thoroughly programmed our brain with thought patterns, memory traces, responses and habits. Our brain still generates humanistic thoughts and ideas, and our old identity is that part of us which was trained and determined to succeed and survive by our own abilities.

When we became born anew, God did not press the “clear” button in our brain, our old identity persists in suggesting ways to live independent of our ambassadorship of God’s reconciliation. The first thing we need to know about the battle for our mind, is that the main targets which must be destroyed are the fortresses in our mind, or called strongholds.

Strongholds are negative patters of thought which are burned into our minds, either through repetition over time or through one-time traumatic experiences. The worldly stimulation we were exposed to was both brief and prevailing.

Every day we lived in this environment, we were influenced by it and preconditioned to conform to it. Brief stimulation includes individual events, situations, places, and personal encounter’s we experienced. We were influenced by books, movies, music, and traumatic events we experienced or witnessed.

We learned a way to cope with these experiences, and resolve the conflicts they produced. Prevailing stimulation consists of long-term exposure to our environment, such as the influence of our family, friends, peers, neighborhood, teachers, and jobs.

There are beings active in the world today who have opposed God before the Garden of Eden. Satan and his devil spirits are actively involved on trying to distract us from our ambassadorship, peppering our mind with their thoughts and ideas.

They are relentless in their attempts to establish negative, worldly patterns of thought in our mind, which will in turn produce negative, worldly patterns of behavior. Whenever we are stimulated to conform to our old identity, we are experiencing temptation.

The essence of all temptation is the invitation to live independent of our ambassadorship. Satan and his devil spirits knows just which buttons to push to tempt us away from our ambassadorship. They have observed our behavior over the years, and they know where we are vulnerable, and that is where they will attack.

The moment we are tempted to get our need met in the world, we are at the threshold of a decision. If we do not immediately choose to take that thought captive, we will begin to consider it as an option. And if we begin to mull it over in our mind, immediately our emotions will be affected and the likelihood of yielding to that temptation is increased.

We must capture the tempting thought in the first frame or it will probably capture us. Once our consideration of a temptation has triggered an emotional response, we will act upon that choice and own that behavior.

We may resent our actions or claim that we are not responsible for what we do, but we are responsible for our actions at this stage, because we failed to take a tempting thought captive when it first appeared at the threshold of our mind.

If we continue to repeat an act for more than six weeks, we will form a habit, and if we exercise that habit long enough, a stronghold will be established. Once a stronghold of thought and response is entrenched in our mind, our ability to choose and to act contrary to that pattern is virtually nonexistent, and negative thoughts and actions we cannot control, spring from a stronghold.

Somewhere in the past we consciously or unconsciously formed a pattern of thinking and behaving which now controls us. Simply putting on the armor of our Father at this stage will not solve our dilemma, these strongholds are already entrenched and fortified.

If the strongholds in our mind are the result of conditioning, then we can be reconditioned by the renewing of our mind. Anything that has been learned, can be unlearned, but we are also up against Satan and his devil spirits who are scheming to fill our mind with thoughts which are opposed to our ambassadorship.

Their strategy is to introduce their thoughts and ideas into our mind and deceive us into believing that they are ours. If they can place a thought in our mind-and they can, it is not much more of a trick for them to make us think it is our idea. If we knew that suggestion was theirs, we would reject the thought, but when they disguise their suggestion as our idea, we are more likely to accept it.

If they can get us to believe a lie, they can control our life. If we fail to take a thought captive to the obedience of our ambassadorship, but believe it, their power is in the lie. They have no power over us except what we give them by failing to take every thought captive, and thus being deceived into believing their lies, and since their primary weapon is the lie, our defense against them is the truth. 

Dealing with Satan and his devil spirits is not a power encounter, it is a truth encounter. When we expose their lie with God’s truth, their power is broken. By preparing our minds for action, we must be transformed by the renewing of our mind, by filling it with God’s truth, as we continue to stockpile our mind with his truth, we will equip ourselves to recognize the lie and take it captive.

We need to practice threshold, first-frame thinking, evaluate every thought by the truth, and do not give place to the lie. People may not always live what they profess, but they will always live what they believe. If our behavior is off, we need to correct what we believe, because our misbehavior is the result of our disbelief.

We can know on a moment-by-moment basis if our ambassadorship is properly aligned with his truth. God has established a feedback system which is designed to grab our attention, so we can examine the validity of our goal.

That system is our emotions. When an experience leaves us feeling angry, anxious, or depressed, those emotional signposts are there to alert us that we may be cherishing a faulty goal. When our activity results in feelings of anger, it is usually because someone or something has blocked our goal.

Any goal which can be blocked by forces we cannot control (other then God’s goal) is not a healthy goal, because our success in that arena is out of our hands. Feelings of anger should prompt us to reexamine our ambassadorship, and the mental goals we have formulated to accomplish God’s message of reconciliation.

When we feel anxious in a task, our anxiety may be signaling the uncertainty of a goal we have chosen. We are wishing something will happen, but we have no guarantee that it will. We can control some of the factors, but not all of them.

When we base our future success on something that can never happen, we have an impossible goal. Our depression is a signal that our goal, no matter how noble, may never be reached. Depression often signals that we are desperately clinging to a goal we have little or no chance of achieving, and that is not a healthy goal. 

Achieving God’s goals for our ambassadorship is learning to distinguish his goal, from his desire. It is a critical distinction, because it can spell the difference between success and failure. His goal is any specific result reflecting his purposes for our ambassadorship, that does not depend on people or circumstances beyond our ability. 

The only person who can block his goal or render it uncertain or impossible is us, and if we adopt the attitude of cooperation with his goals, his goal can be reached. His desire is any specific result that depends on the cooperation of other people or the success of events or favorable circumstances we cannot control.

We cannot base our self-worth or our personal success on our desires, no matter how godly they may be, because we cannot control their fulfillment. When a desire is wrongly elevated to a goal, and that goal is frustrated, we must deal with all the anger, anxiety, and depression which may accompany that failure.

Dealing with the disappointments of unmet desires is a lot easier then dealing with the anger, anxiety, and depression of goals, we would do well to distinguish goals from desires. When we begin to align our goals with God’s goals for our ambassadorship, and our desires with his desires, we will rid our life of a lot of anger, anxiety, and depression.

God’s basic goal for our life, is character development. The tribulations we face are actually a means of achieving our supreme goal of maturity, because persevering tribulations is the doorway to proven character, which is his goal for us.

Perhaps the greatest service performed by trails and tribulations in our lives is to reveal wrong goals. We need occasional mountaintop experiences, but the fertile soil for growth is alway down in the valleys of tribulation, not on the mountaintops.

It is during these times of pressure that our emotions raise their warning flags signaling blocked goals, uncertain goals and impossible goals which are based on our desires, instead of God’s goal for our ambassadorship. His plan is for us to hang in there and grow up, and tribulation just happens to be one of the primary stepping stones on the pathway.  

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Reconciliation, A Complete Gift

Reconciliation is an accomplished fact. It is entirely outside of yourself, and it is simply to be received. There is a new view of living, no longer for self, but for God; to die to self and live to Christ. 

God has taken the initiative to reconcile man back to himself. God is not reconciled to man, as though God were partly to blame for the enmity. Rather, man is reconciled to God, for it is man who moved away from God.

When people need to be reconciled to one another, it normally involves a situation where fault lies on both sides to some degree. Not so with the case between man and God, man has moved away from God, and it is man who needs to be reconciled back to God, not God back to man.

The basic idea of reconciling is to change or make otherwise. This is the reverse of Hellenistic religion, where it is the human being that seeks restoration of the gods’ favor, and also of Judaism, where confession of sin and repentance are the means by which reconciliation with God is sought.

It is not that we must reconcile ourselves to God. Rather, we are to be reconciled, that is, to accept what God has already achieved. It is not merely that we acquire a right standing or do good works; we actually become righteous.

For through what Christ had accomplished, we truly assume his righteousness, just as Christ assumed our sin. If our debts are not posted to our account, it is because someone else has legally assumed them. Christ righteousness ours, and our sin his.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Just a Thought "40"

What a wonderful blessings is this blessing of sainthood, and it is ours this very instance, because saint has been our moniker in heaven, it is this very moment and has been so since we first trusted Jesus Christ.

Being made the righteousness of God himself in our union with a perfectly righteous savior, then being hid with Christ in God gives us a tremendously safe and special place, because what child does God see, when he deals with us, God sees his son, Jesus Christ.

We have been given new motivation to serve, but thank God that our destiny, our blessings are not dependent on our serving, Christ did the serving for us, he did it faithfully as well as it could be done, he is our righteousness.

When we get our eyes off our new identity, and try to produce in our daily experience the acceptance God has already extended to us, we will struggle, because the enemy will try to convince us that we are an unworthy, unacceptable, sin-sick person who will never amount to anything in God’s eyes.

We are saints whom God has declared righteous, believing the enemies lie will lock us into a defeated, fruitless life, but believing God’s truth about who we are, will set us free. It is imperative to our growth and maturity that we believe God’s truth about who we are in Christ.

Some people are extremely proud of their humility, there are those who put on a show humility for the sake of elevating self. The selflessness Paul has in mind in his epistles does not point to itself, it does not tell others how selfness it is in order to call attention to it’s self, it does not seek a response from others, it does not have to make an appeal to the emotions of others for the purpose of calling attention to it’s self, true selflessness would point to the selflessness of someone else, rather than it’s self.

One serving of self, leads to another serving of self, words spoken in haste, lead to other words spoken in haste, harmful words to further harmful words, we serve the sin nature rather than our Savior, as we serve self, rather than the Body of saints to whom we are as equally and intimately joined, as we are joined to our Savior.

Apart from trusting Jesus Christ as Savior, human righteousness comes from self-interest-motivation, it is self-glorifying, and while it may be of earthly benefit, that will not cut it when it comes to meeting the demands of God’s perfect justice. We cannot use experience to prove the validity of our doctrinal position, we must always use doctrine to prove the validity of our experience.

Emotion can lead us down the path, and will oftentimes, most likely lead us down the wrong path, when emotion becomes the governor of our intellect, rather than the doctrinally governed intellect becoming the ruler of our emotions. Emotion should never be the fuel, we should never be emotionally driven, but doctrinally driven. 

Unbelievers and believers alike struggle with the innate sense of right and wrong, and they are drawn toward that desire to fulfill the lusts of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, that is the sin nature working in opposition to the conscience, to have a person go in a direction contrary to that inner sense of right and wrong that is common to all humankind. 

Attitude always precedes action, worry never robs tomorrow of it’s sorrow, it only saps today of it’s joy, we all have worries and care, the only impact worry will ever have is on our health. When a believer’s behavior is consistently inconsistent with what that believer professes to believe, the answer lies in a failure to fully appreciate one or more aspects of the foundational truths.

As we understand what God accomplished for us through his son, and build upon that foundation the truths of who he has made us to be by placing us into his son, we begin to view ourselves as God views us, and there is great security to be found in doing so.

It is difficult for the human mind, apart from letting divine viewpoint, replace human viewpoint to lay hold of the magnitude of what the grace of God is all about, and what that grace has accomplished on behalf of every signal person who has trust what Jesus Christ accomplished. Grace is that which the human race can not earn, does not deserve and will never merit.

The truth Paul has proclaimed in all of his epistles is we could not get right with God in a million life times of trial and error, we could never make ourselves right with God, God had to do what we could not do for ourselves.

Truth designed to give us stability, is truth designed to give us security, God did not intend that believers be insecure, God stabilizes us in the book of Romans, we need to be less interested in trying to become something, or trying to do something, and we need to become a whole lot more interested in learning about who we already are, that is the key.

Grace is God’s work for people, and encompasses everything we receive from God, he is free to do now for ungodly people who take him at his word, we must understand that God has predetermined to glorify us. In fact, he has predestined us to that glorification, we are objects of God’s purpose, because God had a purpose in mind where grace age believers are concerned, and he predetermined through his own decree that his purpose would stand, it will come to pass no matter what. 

Redemption and forgiveness, this is a major focal point of the secret, when it’s come to what God is now revealed, sin no longer being the issue with God, we already have redemption and forgiveness.

It’s not things we need to seek from God, but things God’s already accomplished for us, we need simply believe they are ours in order to appropriate in our own thinking, what has already been accomplished on our behalf.

Our redemption is complete, our forgiveness is all complete, all upfront, both are past tense accomplishments that Paul would have us acknowledge and proclaim, who accomplished them for us, our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Israel was continually being called upon to repent, to change their thinking. John called upon the nation to repent, the 12 called upon Israel to repent, and Jesus called upon the nation to repent, God wanted them to change their thinking about the source of their righteousness and the identity of their Messiah.

Righteousness could never come from them, and that is where they had to change their thinking, this was the change of mind confession that God wanted his earthly nation to make. What do most church people think when they hear the word repentance?

Most would say to repent means to have Godly sorrow that leads to repentance. Others would say that to repent means to turn around and go the other direction, sin no more, is that not what first comes to mind when we see the word repentance from our religious upbringing, this is what is commonly taught in the hallways of religion.

Paul has something he can not escape, the struggle that was taking place with him, his flesh as opposed to God’s power from on high dwelling within him. The very fact this saved person continues to possess a sin nature or self bent always opposing that which God desires, is the very thing that keeps a saved person from accomplishing righteousness through performance.

It is one thing to begin right, then to hear false doctrine and move out in the left field somewhere, because we are hearing something after we have believed Paul’s good news. It is another thing to have never heard the proper good news of Paul to begin with, and to have begun with the thinking that we were earning God’s favor through something that we did or we would do.

Paul showed how some people become content to trust in their own obedience in order to stand justified in the eyes of a perfectly just God, they were crediting their righteous works for a superior position before God. We see that these people had chosen to believe a wrong message, they had believed correctly to begin with, and then they had chosen to believe those who used the scriptures to steal and hide the truth of a perfectly justified status before God by grace alone through faith alone in the accomplishments of Jesus Christ. 

Not only did Paul face the doctrinally issues that people had then, much as they have now, he had to face the continuing conflict people had with one another in those assemblies. Problems arise, when people arrive, the more people we have, the more problems we will have.

Love is what the carnal Corinthians lacked, that lack of love was evidence in the divisions and factions within their fellowships. Love is the bond that unifies and edifies other members of the Body of Christ, love is the operating principle of doctrinal wisdom.

The agape behavioral glue that binds together the believer with all their doctrinal knowledge and their positional perfection to other members of the Body of Christ, that is how God designed the new creation in Christ to operate.

Love is the behavioral glue, attitudinal adhesive that God intended to keep the Body of Christ functioning smoothly and operation efficiently and effectively. Love is the bond that unifies and edifies other members of the Body of Christ, love is the operating principle of doctrinal wisdom.

Did pride not cause the divisions and factions in Corinth over the gifts given as a sign to unbelieving Israel. Pride cause God to turn away from Israel as his chosen channel of blessing and call forth a brand new apostle to initiate a brand new program with the establishment of a brand new creation called the Body of Christ.

It is surprising how many people think Jesus Christ died for the sins they have committed up to a point, but then, from that point on, they have got to keep those sins taken out of the way. Christ paid the price to deliver the human race from God’s justice, yet, with Christ paying the price necessary to satisfy God’s justice for ALL the sins of ALL the world, there are those who would accuse Paul of lying.

A Christ established reconciliation is the core ingredient in Paul’s good news, God has reconciled the world to himself, Paul makes that abundantly clear, God is not imputing people’s sins unto them, because Jesus Christ paid the penalty for those sins.

Judicial satisfaction for sins is what reconciliation is all about, God is not counting, reckoning, imputing, or charging people’s sins to their account, and for a very good reason, he charged those sins to his son’s account.

The doctrinal transaction called Justification has to do with God recognizing someone to be righteous. God will recognize those who take him at his word, concerning the price Christ became on their behalf, to resolve God’s justice for their sins. Justification is a recognition of righteousness that comes from God to those who believe God, it does not go away, it does not abate over time, it is ours forever. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015


God’s grace is a vital aspect of our rejoicing; as the foundation of our rejoicing. Depression is the opposite of joy, and we should never allow people, circumstances or things to rob us of our joy. Grace is the very foundation on which the entire believer experience is built.

There is a glory that belongs to God’s grace, and the glory that belongs to God’s grace is to be praised on the bases on what God’s grace has accomplished. Sin is a done deal! God made Jesus to be sin for the entire world. Jesus was judged for those sins and died for them, taking them out of God’s sight forever.

Salvation is freely given to us the moment we believe the gospel of the grace of God, and no works are required or desired. The pride nature of man is such that man will always have that tendency to think more highly of himself then he ought, and everything we say and everything we do is filtered through that sieve of self, it is just our sin nature.

Rather than recognizing the unworthiness of the flesh and the imputed worthiness of the new man, we spend our lives trying to convince ourselves and others of our value. One of the ways we do it is by elevating self through the denigration of someone else. The unseen put down.

That is a major tool in our ego preservation toolbox. Being critical of others is an intricate part of maintaining that fantasy that we are perfect and others are somewhere a bit beneath us. That is why we are immediate in our defense of self, a wiliness to aggressively find fault with others, a way to be superior, to fell safe. 

Monday, July 13, 2015

Our Destiny

If one has yet to believe this powerful message, they are standing only in the righteousness their flesh has been able to produce for them, which means they have missed the mark of the righteousness God requires for heaven. Justification is the judicial act of God whereby he declares the believer righteous.

As the believer stands before God in his courtroom, the evidence is overwhelmingly against them. Yet, as God drops the gavel, he pronounces no penalty. They are seen as Christ is seen. Justification has to do with a judicial decree of the very righteousness of God himself freely attributed to their account.

God is perfectly righteous in himself and he never deviates from his own perfectly right standard, nor has he ever changed his righteous character, because his righteous character is part of his glory. To be justified (the gift declaration of the very righteousness of God) means to receive that gift that came to all man.

A person must be justified on the basis of believing in what Christ has already done on their behalf, no one can receive that unless that person is placed into Christ. Being placed into Christ, joined to Christ is the method whereby God justifies the believer; or righteousifies them.

The believer must believe that Christ put their sins (past, present and future) away forever as a result of what his death accomplished, in order to be placed into Christ to have righteousness freely attributed to their account. What a marvelous plan God had for anyone who believes! God has kept the fingerprints of the guilt-worthy off the righteousness he designed for the guilt-worthy.

What an amazing salvation the believer truly has, the issue remaining on the table of God’s justice today is whether man will accept that gift. To receive that gift simply means to take it to one’s self or acknowledge something as being true. In other words, to believe it, to take their stand where God takes his stand, that is faith, that is accepting the truth for themselves.

To believe and receive are one in the same thing when it comes to this gift of salvation. The moment a person believes, they are saints and considered holy, because God himself places them in a position of sainthood. Sainthood is not something they have to attain, it is not something they have to wait for or wait to become.

How can God call the believer holy, when they know in a practical sense, they are unholy nearly every day of their lives. They will never measure up to the perfect righteousness of God, but all who will accept reconciliation on the bases of what Christ’s death and resurrection accomplished, are forever reconciled to God.

God has a purpose for those who believe this powerful message, by placing the believer into his son. Once they have trusted what Christ accomplished where their sins are concerned; they are then placed at that point in time into his son, because Christ’s payment has completely satisfied God’s justice where all their sins are concerned.

God did not predestinate man to believe, he predestinated them to be conformed to the image of his son, because he knew who would believe. God has given everyone the opportunity to be saved, but only he knows for sure who will accept that opportunity. Once saved, the believer is no longer in Adam, at the very point of their belief they are at that instant “In Christ”.

In God’s eyes they are no longer who they once were, they are now a new creation, having been forever joined to their savior. The believer must understand that God has predetermined to glorify them. In fact, God has predestined them to that glorification.

To predestinate simply means to decide and decree in advance the destiny of something. Put simply, before the founding of the world, God predetermined their destiny.

That destiny is glorification through the union with the glorified Christ, whom God raised from among the dead. God has foreknowledge of faith, in other words, those he foreknew (that would believe the gospel), God also determined (at that time when he foreknew) that he would conform those (who believe) to the image of his son, so that Christ would be the firstborn among many brethren. We are indeed living in a special age!

If you want God to view you today, you got to be in his son. How can you get into his son, and have all of his righteousness freely imputed to your account? By simply taking God at his word, concerning what his son accomplished for you. It is as simple as that. When God says he is satisfied with what Christ did for your sins, when Christ died for them, all your sins were all future.

It is a son issue on your part, not a sin issue, in order to receive the gift of salivation. Faith is taking God at his word concerning what his son did on your behalf. Christ did it all, there is nothing left for you to do. God did all the giving; you do only all the receiving.

God knows what his son did on your behalf where all of your sin debt is concerned and he is satisfied that all of that sin has already been judged on his son, leaving no judgment for you where your sin is concerned. Then you can take God at his word, he believes it, why can’t you stand with him on what he believes, that is faith. If you want to know that you have faith, simply take your stand where God takes his.