Amazing Grace Sermon
God’s Amazing Grace
Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound…
I love that song. When Jay informed me that I would be preaching this Sunday morning I asked him specifically to include this song, my favorite hymn, and this will be the title of my message this morning, God’s Amazing Grace…
I have always found it to be a great irony that a song written by a slave trader would speak so eloquently about liberty and freedom but then that is what the Grace of God is all about, the power that changes us from being dead in bondage to our Sin, to Life and Liberty in Christ, that transforms us from being in abject poverty to receiving ALL the riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
2 Corinthians 8:9 says, for you know the Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ; that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.
I think about this often especially when I am alone in my quiet times.
I am still in total awe and have a sense of childlike wonderment, even after all these years, that a Holy God would save a wretch like me and allow me to stand here and preach his Word.
I who am no one; can stand here and represent He who is everything!
How can I possible understand with my little mind such an absurd concept that a Holy God would want to fellowship with a sinful man like me?
How can I…, His creation…, possibly understand my Creator, let alone fellowship with Him…?
How can I reconcile these diametrically opposing thoughts?
But when I lifted up my eyes… upon a hill…, that is where I begin to comprehend and I am UTTERLY AMAZED…
There…, on a hill at Calvary… the bridge is crossed and now I understand…
There I see the price that a Holy God was willing to pay and I begin to clearly see…
A perfect God, in the body of a perfect man came and took upon himself all that we deserved so that now we…, the most imperfect of men… can be filled with the perfect Holy Spirit of Our God.
In this knowledge I am most humbled and struck down in total awe and amazement.
That is Amazing Grace… unmerited favor!... and now it isn’t me, but the Spirit of Grace within me that can freely minister in his power! For I have no power, no wisdom, no strength except, Christ in me!
We are made rich in Christ…
No eloquence can capture my gratitude…
So in my inadequacy I will raise up my hand and simply say… Thank you Lord Jesus! Praise your Holy name! You are most worthy of Praise!!!
Undeserving of anything, His Grace has given me Life and Life more abundantly and it is this Grace that removed the scales from my eyes so I too can say as the songwriter…,
I once was lost… but now I am found…, was blind but now I see…
Although it has been over 30 years ago since I first believed I can still remember the day and the circumstances that followed with great clarity. It was a time I can best describe as bittersweet and the best way I can describe it is from the opening line in Charles Dickens’ classic book, “A Tale of Two Cities” which says, “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”
I was going through some very, very difficult circumstances…
As I sat down one day I prayed the following…
“OK, LORD, here I am, now teach me…”
As I opened my Bible and began to devour His Word I can say with perfect sincerity as a witness that this prayer has been answered, not once, but continually for over 30 years! I can proclaim no greater testimony of God’s love and faithfulness than his continual presence with me as he taught me how to walk with Him in peace and rest.
Psalm 4:1 says, Answer me when I call to you, O my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; be merciful to me and hear my prayer.
Psalm 69:17 Do not hide your face from your servant; answer me quickly, for I am in trouble.
As I sat alone, day after day just believing with my childlike faith that God would teach me, it was in those quiet times that
’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, And grace my fears relieved;
Did I understand all that was happening or understand His Word entirely? No.
But I do know this…, His Word and His Holy Spirit gave me peace and Hope.
Romans 5:1 says, Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
I am still amazed and didn’t fully appreciate it till much later how the Holy Spirit taught me and brought to mind things he wanted me to learn.
I had no mentor, it was just me sitting somewhere reading and asking questions and for 2 ½ years this was my daily routine and I would spend 3 to 4 hours every day studying and learning; that was rich…
How precious did that grace appear the hour I first believed.
Since being saved I have always been conscious of his presence in my life everyday in both the barren desert as well as the mountaintops, didn’t understand it then as I do now but Grace was with me through the presence of the Holy Spirit.
There were a lot of things I didn’t understand, one of them was that all of us who are in Christ have a mortal enemy who will come against us to prevent us from living a life that will glorify God.
In addition I had been very ill and spent 3 weeks in a hospital shortly after I had given my life over to Christ.
I remember one night in 1980 I was in so much pain I prayed to God to just let me die…
I remember in my spirit him telling me…”I will take care of you…”
My presence here is proof that God doesn’t answer dumb prayers and that he has kept me around to be a blessing to some and to fulfill his purpose in my life.
1 Peter 5:8 says, Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
Let me explain something to you I have learnt the hard way. I have been through a great deal of pain, more than I care to remember or recount. I have been close to dying several times and it was God’s Grace and his Word that kept me alive, if for no other reason than to serve Him which I am thoroughly enjoying doing. Here is something I really want you to remember…
The devil may walk like a roaring lion BUT HE ISN’T A LION, there is only 1 Lion in this Book and he is the Lion of Judah, Jesus Christ, there is nothing to fear.
Isaiah 43:1b… "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine.
Isaiah 41:13 For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you .
The God who created me and redeemed me calls me by name because I am His, by the same token, He is mine, just as he can posses me I can call on Him with perfect assurance and confidence that he is MY GOD, MY REDEEMER, MY SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST, THE LION OF JUDAH, I know this by his Amazing Grace!
As he teaches me to believe his promises that I can own by faith, he establishes a relationship with me and I am blessed beyond all I ever thought or imagined by the power of Grace within me… it isn’t by my works, it is by the power of the finished work of Jesus Christ at the Cross and it is that belief, my assurance, that has opened up a bountiful harvest of blessings!
I do not obey in order to qualify for his blessings, I have been blessed by his unmerited favor and now my obedience is the fruit, the expression of my Love for Christ. My Love is not an obligation it is a fruit of the joyful spirit he has placed within me knowing I am forgiven and free!
Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; “Tis grace had brought me safe thus far, And grace will lead me home…
We have been saved by His Grace, not by our works.
What far too many Christians fail to recognize is that Salvation isn’t simply escaping Hell and being guaranteed Heaven.
That is far too limiting a view of what Christ did.
Salvation encompasses by definition every facet of our spiritual, emotional and physical life here on earth that we might have life and life more abundantly.
That we can live extraordinary lives that will bring Glory to God not simply because we preach this Gospel but also because it is so evident in our lives and that the world see Jesus Christ through us.
We need to live out for others what God has placed in us.
What were we made for? To know God
What purpose should we set for our life? To know God
What is eternal life? John 17:3 says, Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
Knowing God is a matter of Grace as it was He, not us; that took the initiative to get to know us. We did not become friends with God; he became friends with us that when we were still in sin, God sent his son to reconcile us to himself.
We get to know God because he set us apart by Grace, if that isn’t amazing I don’t know what is!
I am in utter amazement that we who are an eternal thought in the Mind of God were created to glorify God and that we are so loved. Before the creation of the Universe he already had us in mind and longed for the day when we would come into his life!
He is ever mindful of us and has the best of the best in store for us because by his nature he is Good.
Good not in a relative term like we compare ourselves with each others as being good, but in an absolute term. He is Good! It is his nature and character and wants the best for us! Perfectly Good!
One of the things I have never understood is why people who claim to be Christians have Bibles they rarely if ever read.
They confine their relationship to simply going to church an hour on Sunday’s and then wonder why their life is a mess or they don’t see the blessings of God. They are cold!
The very first verse I ever received after being saved was Jeremiah 29:11-14 which says,
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. (12) Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. (13) You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. (14) I will be found by you," declares the LORD
I know that God has great plans for each and every one of us here, his word tells me so but the condition is you have to make an effort to seek God which is an active pursuit on your part which involves not only prayer but studying his Word. His promises say if we seek him, we will find him… He can’t be found if you don’t seek him…
Can’t have a relationship with someone, let alone God, without spending time with him.
By faith God’s Word taught me how to believe for divine healing on 3 occasions. By faith God’s Word taught me how to believe for solutions to very difficult if not seemingly impossible in light of the circumstances.
Why can I believe? Because Jesus fulfilled ALL the Word for us who are his and if we believe the promises we will see what was promised, not because we are good but because he is!
If that isn’t good, I don’t know what good is.
What he did for me he can do for you.
When I first started studying I got an idea from Abraham in the Book of Genesis.
I noticed that every time God did something special for him he would build an altar as a place of remembrance, as a place of thanksgiving and expression of praise.
I decided to do the same but instead of building a physical altar, what I would do was to write in my Bible the date and what God did for me next to scriptures he had showed me that I believed for the promises stated in that verse.
After 30 years of doing this I can assure you every time I open my Bible and pass those promises, my altars, with the date and short description of what God did for me, I am reminded again and that witness re-affirms the promises that builds my faith.
It also evokes a sense of gratitude and thanksgiving and I don’t take his blessings for granted.
This habit has produced in me a thankful heart and I own these promises, they are mine, I have seen miracles then and expect to see more in the future!
My Bible may look like a mess from all the notes in it but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Belief is a choice. Many people have been taught incorrectly as if they think they had to believe a great deal to see God work in their lives.
That is not true.
Faith is built by walking in the faith you have, this is called mustard seed faith, a little faith. As you are faithful in a little, God will add to you more.
If you were to obey the last thing God told you to do, then he will give you new instructions.
The reason you will never fully know it all beforehand is that then you wouldn’t need faith.
Hebrews 11:6 says, And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him .
The greatest thing you can ever do that would please God above everything else is simply to believe him!
To walk in the promises in the Word, you need to know what they are and deposit them in your hearts.
It isn’t a question of simply memorizing them it is KNOWING them with such confidence and assurance that when all else fails The Word of God will keep you.
About a year ago I almost died. I spent 10 days in ICU. Besides having my blood sugar go totally out of control and was measured at 1,700, a number no one had seen before, my heart also began beating irregularly, my blood pressure dropped to 74/40 and if that wasn’t enough I got a blood infection that retarded the medicines capabilities to heal me and made them of no effect.
Things were not looking too good. My friends and the doctors didn’t think I was going to make it.
I couldn’t do much of anything since I had been restrained in bed when I got really mad one day and started taking the IV’s out so I could escape, looking back I have no idea where I was going escape to.
The one thing I could do is go back and remember all that God had done for me. I wasn’t worried about dying, though I do love life, but I was at peace with it and if I had to go, I was ready.
As I lay in my bed I started reciting to myself all the promises in the Word of who I am in Christ. The irony of it all was that on a previous week I had taught a lesson on divine healing, I guess this was the test and there is no grading on the curve!
Here is a sampling of what I said to myself over and over and over again…
In Christ, I am…
A child of God (Romans 8:16); a friend of God (John 15:15)
I have access to Father God through the Holy Spirit (Eph 2:18)
I am assured that Nothing can separate me from the love of God (Rom 8:35-39)
I may approach Father God with freedom and confidence (Eph 3:12)
I am redeemed from the hand of the enemy and the curse of the Law (Ps 107:2; Gal 3:13)
I am forgiven (Col 1:13, 14) I am saved by Grace through Faith (Ephesians 2:8)
In Christ I am a new creation: old things are passed away; all things are become new (2 Cor 5:17)
I am partaker of his divine nature (2 Peter 1:4) I am led by the Spirit of God (Rom 8:14)
I am delivered from the powers of darkness and brought into the Kingdom of his Son (Col 1:13)
I am strong in the Lord and the power of his might (Ephesians 6:10)
I am doing all things through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13)
I am blessed coming in and going out (Deuteronomy 28:6)
I am blessed with all spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3)
By his stripes I am healed (1 Peter 2:24)
Medicine wasn’t working, but God’s Word is the only thing that will work…
I started thinking…
NEVER, EVER ACCEPT AS UNCHANGEABLE ANYTHING THAT GOES CONTRARY TO THE WORD OF GOD!!!
Over and over again, countless times I repeated these.
I remember one night in particular, I was in so much pain, everything in me hurt and I started crying. The fact there was no one around made it even harder… man, all I wanted was to have someone hold my hand for a while and comfort me…there was no one there in the middle of the night…
There was no one to talk to, not that I was in much shape to talk; so just talked to God and I did what David did,
1 Samuel 30:6 says, But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.
Did it work?
I recited His Word; I remembered the promises over and over and over… countless times all night long…
Did it work?
Well, here I am… Fabulous!!!
I can laugh with Joy!
The road wasn’t easy but the promises of God are sure and true, and I am the evidence of their power. The power of God’s Amazing Grace when ALL the circumstances around me told me I wouldn’t get well!
Sickness and disease ARE NOT OF GOD…Satan may have attacked me but I know a risen Savior, I KNOW THE LION OF JUDAH…, HE IS MY FRIEND… AND HIS WORD ROARS!!!
Psalm 35:27 May those who delight in my vindication shout for joy and gladness; may they always say, "The LORD be exalted, who delights in the well-being of his servant." I will see my vindication!
I am not totally sure of what God has planned for the rest of my life but I am ready for a great adventure LIFTING HIM UP AND SERVING HIM!
The Lord has promised good to me, His Word my hope secures; He will my Shield and Portion be,
As long as life endures.
The next verse in the hymn goes like this…
Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail, And mortal life shall cease, I shall possess, within the veil, a life of joy and peace…
Since there were only 2 people in the Bible that did not experience death, Enoch and Elijah, I have concluded that the odds of all of us dying are pretty good!
Let’s address this in light of Grace.
Grace, by virtue that it is a gift requires a response. You can either accept it or reject and either choice come with the corresponding consequences they bring.
Let me first address this issue to those of you here that DO NOT know Jesus Christ as Savior.
If you die without Jesus Christ as Savior; you are going to Hell… forever.
Now I know that there are some churches and ministers that don’t deal with this as they feel it will turn people off and they might leave. The Bible says this very clearly…
2 Timothy 4:3 says, For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. (4) They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.
By preaching, if it can be called that, a gospel of convenience or being “politically correct” as to not offend anyone, they are not only leading others to hell they will have to give an account if not also go their themselves.
They talk about the Love of God to the exclusion of his other attributes and God needs to be presented without compromise and with clarity that only the truth brings.
So let’s do that…
God is Love.
That is absolutely true and many in the world have taken this attribute as justification why God should allow them into heaven without making Christ Savior, their argument is…, how can a Loving God send people to Hell?
God is Love, but He is also Holy; and that is what the world wants to avoid, Sin, they want God’s Love but they also want to keep their Sin... and the lifestyle that goes with it.
God’s longsuffering isn’t affirming that their sins are OK to keep, it God’s giving them time to repent before it’s too late and the world isn’t seeing this.
God being Holy, by his very nature cannot tolerate sin. Furthermore, if he did tolerate sin he would be saying that Jesus Christ died in vain. Since God and Jesus are one and the same, he cannot disown himself for if he were to do that then he wouldn’t be God.
God by virtue of the concept is our Creator and is just in all he does, not just in a relative term but as an absolute therefore he can set the rules and what he set was Jesus hanging on a tree for you and me.
Payment was already made on your behalf, there is nothing for you to do except to accept this Gift, simply believe!
Sin is so serious an issue with God that only God himself could pay the penalty for sin, nothing else can.
The world does not want to deal with the Cross and accept Jesus Christ’s Gift as the full payment.
It is the Cross of Grace that needs to be preached.
Now that may not seem just, and it isn’t from our viewpoint, but that is what God did. All we have to do is accept this Gift and we would be forgiven, born again and eternally blessed…
Some people hearing this may get offended and think I am being unloving, nothing could be further from the truth, real love is transparent and honest and hurts sometimes in that the truth goes against the lies we live but trust me when I tell you there is a lot of Love in this Sermon and it is from God’s Word.
God is very serious about this and people make the mistake of not taking him seriously.
I sometimes see people speak with a familiarity about God I find offensive.
I can tell they have no clue who he really is.
God needs to be feared, not to the point we become afraid to fellowship with the one who loves us most, but feared to the point we have total reverence and respect and understand his love freely within that reverence.
When the Bible teaches that Jesus took upon Himself all of mankind sins, that is correct, but what isn’t taught often enough was that the Cross was not only were our sins were taken care of, it also the place that satisfied God’s wrath and anger meant for each and every one of us. All that anger was placed on Jesus on our behalf
Let me explain to you briefly the Cross.
There God lay on Jesus not only all the sin, sorrow and suffering of mankind. It is made worse by Jesus’ knowledge that despite all he gave, many would never receive this free Gift of Grace.
He died to save all, but all will not be saved… Now that is the real tragedy of the Cross!
If that were not enough, God’s anger and wrath had to be dealt with since this is how God deals with Sin. That wrath was dealt at the Cross as well.
Then God’s mercy came proclaiming, ‘THAT IS ENOUGH… I AM SATISFIED… NOW IT IS THE TIME FOR MY FAVOR, FOR MY GRACE!”
That is the Cross; that is Jesus Christ… that is the gift of Grace! Simply believe and you will be saved!
Imagine if you can, God’s anger and wrath directly aimed at you, that is but a foreshadow of what you can expect if you die without Christ.
Listen to this…
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him.
So to those here that may not know Jesus as Savior and don’t want to accept him, then you have to pay the consequence and handle God’s Wrath and anger on your own… forever… that is Hell!
Romans 2:5 But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God's wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. (6) God "will give to each person according to what he has done." (7) To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. (8) But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.
For those here that don’t know Jesus as Savior, here is what would happen…
When you die, you will come immediately into the presence of God.
The question will be, “do you know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior?”
That will be the only question asked; your answer will be the only one that matters and your answer will determine what follows for eternity.
Furthermore, you will have to review with Him, face to face, all you have done in your life and give an account.
There will be nowhere to hide, you can’t blame anyone else, everything will be out in the open, and the consequence of seeing his wrath and anger poured out on you will be a terrible thing and terrible to contemplate, simply because you rejected his Grace.
Is that what you really want?
As you ponder this let me address those here that do KNOW Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord…
We do not have to endure God’s Wrath as that was satisfied on our behalf when we accepted Jesus, but don’t think that having accepted Grace frees us from responsibilities.
We won’t have to answer for our sins but we will have to give an account for his calling on our life within the Body of Christ, the church.
Let me say this again as I really want you to hear this…
We won’t have to answer for our sins but we will have to give an account for his calling on our life within the Body of Christ, the church.
Our sins are covered in the blood but we will have to give an account of what if anything we did in the church, the body of Christ.
Although our salvation will not be an issues since we have already accepted Jesus and Savior, our eternal rewards will be determined by our faithfulness to our calling.
2 Corinthians 5:10 For we (speaking of the church) must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.
You can’t lose your salvation but there are responsibilities and obligations that come from being saved.
Teacher that never taught will have to explain why they didn’t, preacher that were called and never preached will likewise have to give an account, all of us that have been called will have to give an account of what we did with the talents we were given.
Here is the thing, ALL of us without exception that know Jesus are called to minister, no one was called simply to sit and do nothing!
Romans 11:29 for God's gifts and his call are irrevocable.
Ephesians 4:7 But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. (8) This is why it says: "When he ascended on high, he led captives in his train and gave gifts to men."
Ephesians 4:12 to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up
At the very least, all of us were called to take part in the Great Commission and “Go”.
God isn’t looking for us to simply obey as an obligation or works, he is wondering if we love enough to express his love for us towards others as a fruit of His Love in us!
You can’t make excuses that you are not prepared or qualified, whom God calls he equips.
The Bible and the History of the church is full of men and women that God called that were the least likely to have become effective and empowered to bring the Gospel to others.
Moses was a murderer and stutterer who didn’t want to go when God called him, God equipped him nonetheless. How? He sent him to take care of sheep for 40 years on the side of a mountain to teach him how to lead a nation.
Paul was a lawyer, a member of the aristocracy, fully knowledgeable in the Law; did God immediately send him out? Nope, he first sent him to the desert for a Bible Study between himself and Paul for 3 years. Imagine what that Bible Study was like…
There in the desert, God’s Grace met Paul, the teacher of the law; there God planted his seed of his Word and watered it with His Living Water that blossomed into the fruits seen throughout the New Testament that are still producing an abundant harvest 2,000 years later! The Gospel of Grace!
So you say you are not a Moses or Paul…OK
D. L. Moody was an evangelist and publisher in the 19th century. As a young man he could barely read. I am not sure if I have ever heard of someone being rejected by a church as Moody was…
His first application for church membership, in May 1855, was rejected. He was not received as a church member until May 4, 1856. As his Sunday School teacher, stated:
“I can truly say, and in saying it I magnify the infinite grace of God as bestowed upon him, that I have seen few persons whose minds were spiritually darker than was his… and I think that the committee of the Mount Vernon Church seldom met an applicant for membership more unlikely ever to become a Christian of clear and decided views of Gospel truth, still less to fill any extended sphere of public usefulness.”
D.L Moody’s application for joining church was rejected… God used this man to preach to hundreds of thousands and he began a Bible Institute that is over 140 years old and going strong… not too bad for someone rejected who could barely read…, How Amazing God’s Grace is…!
Anyone ever hear of Billy Graham?
His association stated that in his outreach over 3 million people have made professions of faith at Graham’s rallies.
No telling what the total impact has been in people that were saved later or the effect of those saved who have impacted others… Only God knows…
Few people know that Billy was almost expelled from college and was told according to his own autobiography that “he would never amount to anything other than a country preacher.”
He didn’t do too bad either…
God equips, do you know what he wants you to bring?
Wisdom, No… Strength, No… Self-sufficiency……. No
All he wants is for you to receive the FREE Gift of His Grace, His son Jesus Christ.
Paul understood this and once he did he was empowered, when God told him…
2 Corinthians 12:9 says, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."
The more you come to realize the Gift of Grace God has offered you, the more you will fall in love with Jesus Christ, from that response we can express this love by loving others. We did nothing to receive this Gift, but we can freely give it away!
Our Salvation is not something we receive by works; it is received by faith by believing in Jesus Christ, that’s all. We receive by faith, we give it away in Love, that is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
That is a life of Joy and Peace; serving will fulfill you now as nothing else will… not as an obligation but as an expression of Love and Joy!
The last 2 verses of the Hymn go like this…
The earth shall soon dissolve like snow, The sun forbear to shine; But God, who called me here below, Will be forever mine.
When we’ve been there ten thousand years, Bright shining as the sun, We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise than when we’d first begun.
There is a day in the future when God will literally create a New Heaven and Earth.
Although no one can tell exactly when that day is, we can tell from just understand the Book of the Revelation some of the events that must precede it as well as what the New Heaven and Earth will be like
I am by no means an expert in that Book nor do I profess to be but I know this…
A Marriage and wedding feast is going to take place…and we are all invited…
You see, we are the Bride of Christ, the Church.
He is the Groom, the Lord Jesus Christ, the embodiment of God’s Perfect Grace…The Rose of Sharon… At his appearing all the flowers in bloom will supernaturally radiate in a joyful expression of praise, a rainbow of colors exploding majestically and the angelic choir will sing of his amazing Grace!
… and forever and ever we will be one…
To try to compare it to any marriage we have ever seen is pointless; no degree of imagination or creativity can come close to describing that day…
God’s Amazing Grace will not end, no; it will be magnified at its source… it will come to its complete and perfect joyful fulfillment!
We can’t even begin to image this… but I promise you it will be intense!
We will have new glorified bodies and I believe I have a glimpse as to why we need these…
The marriage between Jesus and us will be the continuation of the deep intimacy and personal relationship he began with each of us down here on Earth.
Not unlike the intimacy shared between a husband and a wife in a loving marriage, we will experience this at a level that only a new glorified body can withstand… These frail corrupt bodies we live in now; couldn’t handle this sacred and intimate union…
Jesus will share with each of us personal…, intimate moments no one else will have that are unique as only a marriage relationship can understand that uniqueness!
Our Joy will be made perfect and complete!
The intimate moments he will share that I am talking about are not corporate ones for all of us to divide among ourselves, as if he couldn’t afford great riches.
The ones I am describing are individual ones unique to our character and personality and a higher level than the any intimacy he began with each of us here on Earth.
Eternity then will comprise of further innumerable moments such as these without end!
God eternally revealing to us more and more about Himself and His Glory THAT WE CAN INCREASE IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF HIM!
God Love for us, the expression of His Grace!
There will be much Joy in this; there will much joyful laughter and great praise!
We will run and find each other with joyful, childlike laughter and excitement and want to share with our brothers and sisters in Christ this intimacy.
I will go find Jay or Jeanne, my best friends or others…
the conversation will start like this…
“Hey, Saint Dude! Let me tell you what Jesus just showed me….!!!”
He, with likewise excitement, will want to speak as well…
There will be Great Love, Joy, Laughter and Praise…!!!
and when we have been there 10,000 years… it will seem… we have just begun…
That is God’s Amazing Grace!!!
Plan of Salvation:
I am asking you the most important question of life. Your joy or your sorrow for all eternity depends upon your answer. The question is: Are you saved? It is not a question of how good you are, nor if you are a church member, but are you saved? Are you sure you will go to Heaven when you die?
God says in order to go to Heaven, you must be born again. In John 3:7 , Jesus said to Nicodemus, “You must be born again.”
In the Bible God gives us the plan of how to be born again which means to be saved. His plan is simple! If you are not, You can be saved today. How?
First , you must realize you are a sinner. “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
Because you are a sinner, you are condemned to death. “ For the wages [payment] of sin is death” (Romans 6:23) . This includes eternal separation from God in Hell.
“ . . . it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).
But God loved you so much He gave His only begotten Son, Jesus, to bear your sin and die in your place. “ . . . He hath made Him [Jesus, Who knew no sin] to be sin for us . . . that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21).
“ . . . God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).
Although we cannot understand how, God said my sins and your sins were laid upon Jesus and He died in our place. He became our substitute. It is true. God cannot lie.
“God . . . commandeth all men everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30). This repentance is a change of mind that agrees with God that one is a sinner, and also agrees with what Jesus did for us on the Cross.
In Acts 16:30-31, the Philippian jailer asked Paul and Silas: “ . . . ‘Sirs, what must I do to be saved?’ And they said, ‘Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved . . . .’ ”
Simply believe on Him as the one who bore your sin, died in your place, was buried, and whom God resurrected. His resurrection powerfully assures that the believer can claim everlasting life when Jesus is received as Savior.
“But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name” (John 1:12).
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13).
Whosoever includes you. Shall be saved means not maybe, nor can, but shall be saved.
In Luke 18:13, the sinner prayed: “God be merciful to me a sinner.”
Just pray: “Oh God, I know I am a sinner. I believe Jesus was my substitute when He died on the Cross. I believe His shed blood, death, burial, and resurrection were for me. I now receive Him as my Savior. I thank You for the forgiveness of my sins, the gift of salvation and everlasting life, because of Your merciful grace. Amen.”
Just take God at His word and claim His salvation by faith. Believe, and you will be saved. No church, no lodge, no good works can save you. Remember, God does the saving. All of it!
You say, “Surely, it cannot be that simple.” Yes, that simple! It is scriptural. It is God’s plan. believe on Jesus and receive Him as Savior today.
If His plan is not perfectly clear, read this over and over, without laying it down, until you understand it. Your soul is worth more than all the world.
Any questions you call me, we can always talk and I have shared with you some of the miracles I have seen you can have the same!
Be sure you are saved. If you lose your soul, you miss Heaven and lose all. Please! Let God save you this very moment if you have any doubt then ask him to fill you with his Holy Spirit that you would be enabled.
God’s power will save you, keep you saved, and enable you to live a victorious Christian life. “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, Who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).
Do not trust your feelings. They change. Stand on God’s promises. They never change. After you are saved, there are three things to practice daily for spiritual growth:
Pray -- you talk to God.
Read your Bible -- God talks to you.
Witness -- you talk for God.
You should be baptized in obedience to the Lord Jesus Christ as a public testimony of your salvation, and then unite with a Bible-believing church without delay. “ Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord . . . .” (2 Timothy 1:8)
“Whosoever therefore shall confess [testify of] Me before men, him will I confess also before My Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32).
Let me pray…
Lord, thank you for this lesson! You are the Author and Finisher of my Faith, Praise your Holy Name!
Written Thanksgiving Week 11/20 – 11/26/11