He Rules The World With Truth And Grace

 

8th December

Therefore, God elevated Him to the place of the highest honour and gave Him the Name above all other names, that at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow, in Heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Philippians 2:8-11

Often, we have a mindset that the enemy is in control of everything that happens on this earth. Yet that is simply not true. Although it is undeniable the stain of the enemies footprints are everywhere to be seen, it is ultimately God who is the ruler and reign-er of this earth, the Heavens and the universe. The book of John tells us that nothing was made without the voice of Jesus. And nothing has changed since then. By the power of God’s voice the earth was created and in the Name of Jesus the world is sustained. Perhaps the writer of the Christmas carol, ‘joy to the world’ had it right all along. He truly does rule the world with His truth and grace.

For God So Loved The World…That’s You & Me

 

7th December

For God so loved the world that He gave His One and Only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.. . He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.”

John 3:16, 2 Peter 3:9b

Sin can sometimes feel like a spider web. You get enticed by its appeals, yet slowly it encompasses you and starts to spin you around in lures and false temptations and hopes. Before you know you are trapped in its bound and perhaps in the cycle of sinning. If that is you, then all is not lost. There is hope. That hope is Jesus Christ. He came so we won’t perish in our sin. Instead He breaks every chain that binds us by the power of His love and grace. Furthermore, He doesn’t want any of us to perish but for us to live, and live in the fullness of His love. He loved us so much, that is why He came to this world. Friend, there is a way out, there is hope and there is a future for you, free from the binds of sin, and the spider web that you may feel trapped in. God is on your side. Just repent, believe and accept His love and forgiveness, and watch every chain that has been binding you fall away!!

The Stack Game

6th December

When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the time and died for us sinners.”

Romans 5:6

There is a new app now available on smartphones where the aim of the game is to see how high you can jump over oncoming platforms. The higher you jump, the more points you score. The tricky part is that the platforms come from both left and right and at varied speeds. As soon as you miss-time your jump, the platform knocks you off the tower of platforms you have managed to jump over and you start again from zero. Our lives can sometimes feel like that.

We sometimes feel undefeatable living in the fullness of God’s grace and mercy, when suddenly something knocks you off your feet and you feel like you are back at square one. That killer punch may be an unexpected circumstance, a stumble in our walk with God, a temptation that has popped its ugly head up again, or perhaps something out of your control. Whatever it is, let today’s verse be an encouragement for you. Get back up. We are never too far out of reach from God’s grace. His mercies are new every morning. He is the one that encourages us and picks us back up to keep pressing on. That is why Jesus came. He came so we might live. And He came at just the right time. Not only for when we feel like we are at the top of a huge stack of platforms, but especially, for when we feel knocked down, out for the count and ‘utterly helpless’!

Sin Entered The World By One BUT..

 

5th December

…For the sin of this one man, Adam, brought death to many, But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and His gift of forgiveness to many through this other man, Jesus Christ.”

Romans 5:15b

Isn’t the word BUT such a wonderful word. In a positive context, all that can come before it, can be swept away by what precedes it. Today’s wonderful bible verse is a perfect example of this. The writer of Romans explains to us, that because of Adam’s disobedience in the Garden of Eden, death and sin entered the world. BUT because of the grace of God, who sent Jesus to take the place for the punishment of our sin and the death caused by it, we are free by receiving His forgiveness. It’s like everything before the BUT is swept away by this river of grace. There is no longer any need to focus on what comes before the BUT rejoice in what happened after it. That BUT was a turning point in the history of mankind, and if you allow it, can be a turning point in your life too. Receive His forgiveness and live in the fullness of God’s grace.

Nothing You Can DO But Accept

 

4th December

God saved you by His grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.”

Ephesians 2:8-9

The Gospel is simple, yet on the same hand, it is the most difficult thing. What do we mean by this? Well, the simple part is, through no endeavour of our own or good works or following a set of rules or any such like thing, we can be saved by simply believing and accepting that by God’s grace, our sins are forgiven through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross and our confession and repentance of them. The hard and such difficult thing is accepting this.

As humans our natural instinct is to want to pay for something we have. We don’t go to a restaurant and expect a free meal. We want to pay for it, often out of appreciation. The same is with a piece of art or a service we may have received. Our natural reaction or expectation is that when we receive something, we feel we are obliged to either return the gift, service or item with an equal value: money or such like. Yet salvation is completely different. It is not repayable. There is no value on it. Moreover, the price has already been paid and our debt cleared by Jesus, Himself, the giver of salvation. Our only response to it, is not to try to pay for it by our good works, but simply in thanksgiving and rejoicing, receive salvation and let His salvation change us.

Friends, we can’t boast or take credit for our salvation because of the things we have done. On the contrary, we boast in what Christ has done and give Him the glory. This Christmas season, if you don’t know Jesus yet, receive His free gift of salvation. There are no strings attached, nothing is owed. Just accept, believe and receive His forgiveness and love. That is grace. That is true love. That is why we celebrate His birth.

Dead To The Power Of ‘Works’

 

29th November

So, my dear brothers and sisters, this is the point: You died to the power of the law when you died with Christ. And now you are united with the One who was raised from the dead. As a result, we can produce a harvest of good deeds for God.”

Romans 7:4

Have you ever thought about why we sign legal documentation when we get married? Well, quite simply, it is to show that ‘legally’ two people are joining together to become one. It is almost like a ‘binding contract’ between two people. Moreover, in God’s eyes, until that ‘contract’ is broken through the passing of a spouse, marital unfaithfulness is adultery.

The writer of Romans, alludes also to the picture of marriage to explain how the power of sin and the law is broken. Before Christ, the law was the standard and guideline for holy living and ‘spiritual faithfulness’; almost as if we were married to it. Step outside of it, break it or abuse it and it was classed as ‘spiritual adultery’ of which there were severe consequences. Yet when Jesus died and rose again, His death separated us from the bind of the law, ‘trying to do good and keep all the laws’, and instead we were given new life, raised in Chrisr, because of Christ. Simply put, Jesus’ death broke the power of sin and the law, and His resurrected life has set us free and allowed us to be united to Christ, not to sin and the law.

It is Christ in us that produces good works for His glory. Not ourselves, not our ‘contractual’ obligations to be faithful, but a right standing and liberating relationship with our Heavenly Father. We are free from ‘doing’ because we have to be good! We rather now do good because we are free!

Life: In All Its Fullness

 

28th November

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it in all its fullness.”

John 10:10

When Jesus came to the earth, as mentioned yesterday, He didn’t just come as a ticket to Heaven. He came so that we could live life to its fullness here now on this earth. When we pray ‘Lord let Your Kingdom come and Your will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven’ we are praying for every blessing that is in Heaven to become real on this Earth in our everyday lives. Jesus came to bring peace in our troubled world, life where there was only death and joy when there was despair. He came to penetrate every part of our thinking, choices and actions with His glory. This is life in its fullness. Living in Him and for Him. Life without Christ is not worth living. It becomes only temporary satisfaction. It is only Jesus that can fill our hearts to overwhelming. Invite the life giver into every part of your heart and watch and see Jesus’ blessings overwhelm your souls.