Carrying God’s Message

The world is full of messages. Most of them centered in ideas where self-serving objectives are expressed to encourage personal excellence. They highlight human attributes and use self-reliance as the primary means of getting success. This communication is selfish because it leaves out the greatest news known to humanity—God’s truth.

A carrier of God’s message begins with understanding His language. It’s imperative for us to hear the Lord’s call because without knowing His dialog our ears miss His voice. Once we become receptive to God’s speech, we receive His message.

What is God’s message?

The most prominent part of His announcement is heaven. Yes, salvation is, God’s ultimate truth, but He has other valuable words for us to digest (1 Peter 3:8-12).

In my journey with God, He has shown me two vital Christian actions crucial to salvation. They are love and forgiveness. When God saved me, He let me experience His love and forgiveness. This purification of my heart placed me in His church (Christ’s Body) and made me worthy to carry His message of eternal hope. I now know God wants me to show the same mercy to others (Luke 6:36).

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Love: God’s Greatest Message

Love is God’s most cherished emotion. His greatest demonstration of love was sacrificing Christ’s life sparing us from spiritual death. God’s unconditional compassion for humanity paved the way for eternal life. Christ holds love as God’s top commandments (Matthew 22:34-40).

Once we receive God’s love, then it becomes our responsibility to express it to others. This includes loving people we despise because real love is letting God judge those who disobey. It’s in loving difficult people we are most effective in sharing Christ’s compassion because Christian action speaks volume sin God’s eyes.

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Spreading God’s message of love is the finest way of comforting others because we embrace them with Christ’s compassion. And with Christ’s affection that makes living in a world riddled with hatred worthwhile. God has given us this gift of love to help others live a better life. But the most rewarding experience of loving others is receiving God’s promise of covering our sins (1 Peter 4:8)

I have struggled to love uncaring people. Every time Christ gives me the opportunity to love disturbed people, and I fail it cuts me off from God’s spirit. This causes my heart to harden and my faith fades away. When I behave this way, I’m showing God my prideful intentions. And the more I stay unwilling to love them the tougher it becomes to stay focused on living holy. But, the moment I repent (Matthew 5:44), God steps in and blesses me with His grace.

I’m grateful to share with you those times when I don’t love are becoming less frequent. God is awesome!

Forgiveness: Christ’s Ultimate Sacrifice

Forgiveness is high on Christ’s list of commandments. God made forgiveness as significant as love. Remember, Christ’s death, resurrection, and ascension forgave us for sin. Christ is the way God forgives us, and now it’s our turn to do likewise. It’s in forgiving others we receive God’s pardon for our sins (Matthew 6:14).

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One way God communicates is through forgiveness and the benefits He hands out for forgiving others shows up in a remarkable way. The biggest dividend in letting go of hurt feelings is the peace Christ releases inside our spirits. Forgiveness prevents bitterness from hijacking our hearts and removes personal conflict with our neighbors. This is a great freedom.

As God’s messenger, our lives must show others a regenerated spirit where sin takes a backseat and living in Christ body becomes our primary focus. God’s invitation to join His Church (Jesus) holds us accountable to His standards. Our faith makes us acceptable to God and in return our conviction must radiate the internal holiness Christ brings into our hearts. Remember, God has called us to become Christ’s sheep and granted us the privilege to carry His message.

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Salvation A Rich and Wealthy Inheritance

God never fails to enrich the lives of His children. The wealth our Father brings to faithful followers is incredible. When the Lord gives His grace, it’s a rich experience. Nothing matches the fruits of Christ. He paid the price for our wealthy gain. We owe everything to Jesus.

Both the Old and New Testament record the spiritual rewards God grants those favorable in His eyes. See our Father is never absent and saves humans. He has been doing this since the fall of Adam and Eve. His love is impeccable, undeniable and exhilarating. We are privileged to be invited to the greatest wealth known to man. And this honor isn’t earned but given by our Lord.

God’s gift of salvation opens the door to a treasure chest so rich in His Spirit it goes beyond the earth. This infinite fortune is in Christ’s body. Trusting in Jesus unlocks a generous supply of spiritual food. And Our Father will do wonders with the smallest quantity of faith.

What are Christ’s riches?

Jesus is full of prosperity. Our Savior greatest wealth is heaven. When Christ suffered and died, God opened an everlasting life beyond the flesh. We are fortunate to be chosen. Most people ignore the Lord’s call. But those who accept Him receives a spiritual wisdom so wealthy nothing can overtake its bond. When you tap into Christ’s knowledge, God’s enemy flees.

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Our Father fulfills His promises and picking a single one is tough. One of the most enlightening revelations to our Father’s remarkable reality is in Apostle Paul’s Epistle to the Ephesians. Paul’s incredible insight to God’s astonishing affection for His children is.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved. (Ephesians 1:3-6)

God chose you before creation, and this scripture points out His reason. Here the Lord’s love places us in Christ’s body where we receive spiritual gifts from our Savior. Before our physical birth, God planned our inheritance to His kingdom. Since Jesus is the path to heaven; our Father’s grace purified our hearts through His tender affection. This cleansing separated us from sin and made us acceptable to our Messiah. And God’s goodness makes glorifying Him a valuable experience.

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In the past, my agnostic outlook robbed me from the spiritual treasures God offers. I chased after sinful lusts the world threw in my direction hoping I could find satisfaction. This created a sad existence. Nothing ever brought me peace, and I stayed irritable. Every time I received those sinful temptations, it made life harder.
I am grateful to share with you God changed my empty treasure chest. Today, through Christ my focus is on living in God’s purpose instead of self-searching behavior.

 

My mindset has shifted from looking at troubles as problems to opportunities in growing a stronger faith in Christ. Those transformations are not of my making but come from receiving God’s forgiveness. They are full of His Spirit keeping me grounded in godliness. And God does the same for you.

Christ’s sovereignty is wealthy, rich in God’s truth and full of spiritual treasures. God has many ways He uses to continue overflowing our hearts with His love. The Lord made you rich in Christ’s Spirit. Remember Jesus gives you an endless fortune of knowledge and this wisdom has eternal rewards.

Are you enjoying your Christian wealth?

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Breaking the Bondage of Sin

Inner peace is one of the most sought after human experience. You know that place where serenity takes over and your spirit filled with Christ’s love. Constant turmoil is unhealthy. Life on its terms isn’t easy and staying obedient to God is tough. It’s astonishing how the three letter word sin causes unremitting pain.

The origin of sin dates back to the Great Fall of Adam and Eve (Genesis 3: 1-19). God’s disappointment with them shut the door to the Garden of Eden. Understanding the way God reacts to sin is crucial to a believer and without this knowledge abiding in Christ is elusive.

Even though their disobedience disgusted God, He loved them and gave them a way out (Genesis 3:22). And God does the same for us. God’s new way of showing mercy is giving us Jesus Christ.

Breaking the bondage of sin begins when God saved you. Remember, salvation is God’s gift (Ephesians 2:8). Once God brings you into His kingdom, then Christ takes over, and the Holy Spirit fills your heart. This unity (Holy Trinity) breaks the chains of sin. And your darkness is overtaken with the Light of Christ (John 1:4).

 

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Why is discussing sin essential?

Well, the primary reason is we still sin (1 John 1:8-9). Unbelievers use a Christian’s sins as ammunition to attack God’s kingdom. They don’t understand because they are a slave to sin, and God hasn’t chosen them to enter his sovereignty.

The unchosen ones live in blasphemy disregarding the way Christ works in a saved soul. A real Christian knows the key to breaking sin’s pattern is confession and repentance. And true faith shows a decrease in practicing sin.

Through personal devotion and our walk with Christ turning away from sin becomes easier. Christ paid the price for our freedom, and this great revelation transforms our lives. In the old Testimony, God showed His chosen leaders the kinds of sacrifices acceptable for receiving His grace.

But when our Lord brought His New Covenant into focus, then He was the One, who gave us the ultimate sacrifice. Yes, God showed His faithfulness by sacrificing His Son.

We are privileged to witness God’s faithfulness.

The key to becoming free from the paralyzing grip of sin is committing to Christ. This means spending time with Him throughout the day. Halfhearted efforts prevent us from receiving full access to Christ’s mighty hand. And we don’t have the strength to remove our sins. But God has appointed Christ to remove them.

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Each of us has days when our slack attempts in contacting God keeps us in distress. Excuses or staying too busy is a setup for unnecessary problems. Remember Christ didn’t tell God waits until I’m ready.

No, Jesus followed God’s will and we must follow His example. Either we give Christ our best or risk the consequences. Don’t be mistaken my friend; God notices everything.

In John’s First Epistle he left us a Spirit-filled truth on the freedom from sin.

“My little children, these things I write to you, so you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.” (1 John 2:1-2)

John’s message permeates the essence of repentance. He shows Christ as the way of atonement and reminds us to confess our sins to Him. When you take a look at this scripture, it’s self-explanatory. Christ our Intercessor (John 14:12-14) forgives us and our part is confessing our sins to Him.

Before God saved me, my life was hopeless. I was out of control and blinded to those I harmed. When I tried to change my sinful behavior, it got worse. On my limited strength nothing changed. I had no self-control and sin ran wild causing nothing but trouble.

Pride, sexual immorality, and selfishness ruled my motives. Since I couldn’t be trusted, there was no integrity. But when I reached the point where I wanted to die then God grabbed a hold and rescued me.

I am grateful for the day when God saved me because Christ freed me from my sinfulness. This revelation changed my life. Since then I have learned the qualities of salvation.

 

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One of the essential ingredients in staying free from the chains of sin is spending private time with God. Serious prayer time is crucial for me. It’s imperative for me to confess my sins before God without distractions. It’s in those times with Christ I find the answers and the courage to turn away from sin. And when sin returns my faith leads me back to God.

For example, my sexual behavior has changed because Christ has given me a holy outlook on God’s intended purpose. Humility replaces pride and selflessness turn me away from selfish behavior. And the more I pick up my cross and walk with Christ a continuous flow of righteousness emerges.

I’m not without sin but this holy path gives me a spiritual courage stronger than sin. I owe everything to God.

Christ is the way out of sin. Draw closer to God (James 4:10) and watch Christ free you from the bondage of sin. No matter how often sin raises its ugly head repentance is the answer. Remember our freedom came at Christ’s price.

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Watchful Eyes

When God saves a soul, He replaces blindness with watchful eyes. This new pair of eyes Christ designed for seeing heaven while we live on earth. They focus on things above instead of shortsighted personal pleasures. And God appointed Christ to keep blurry vision from darkening your sight of salvation.

Many people point out current world events as signs humanity’s end is happening now. They make predictions and give specific dates. And when those times pass, they rationalize their beliefs with illogical explanations.

But Christ tells us no one knows; “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.” (Matthew 24:36)

What are the real warning signs?

The answers emerge in the Book of Revelation. In the sixth chapter of Revelation, John’s recorded events are the beginning stages of God’s wrath. We know this truth since the day God opened our eyes and showed us His plans for our eternal future    (1 Peter 2:9-10).

 

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At the end of time, God will let Satan prepare his last battle before Christ crushes his reign. The seven seals are where God explains the sequence in which He will carry out His final plan.

Understanding those seals requires looking through the eyes of Christ. Since God granted you salvation, placed you in Christ’s body then you see as He does.

This sixth chapter of Revelation identifies individual events God has set in place. He made them noticeable to believers, so they don’t fall victim to deception. Those seals are broken into three distinct observations. They involve death, starvation, and cosmic calamities.

The world shows us evidence of those unimaginable tragedies. Islamic terrorism, famine and people living in poverty are universal reality making global news. Those sad but true events give us a glimpse of what God has in store for the world’s future.

Cosmic calamities don’t occur often. But science has uncovered earth damage caused by meteorites and asteroids. So this too gives us insight into the sixth seal mention in the book of Revelation.

Remember, don’t become afraid, because Christ has secured your place in God’s kingdom (John 14:6). And God gave you a new pair of glasses, and you can envision heaven a place free from pain and suffering (Revelation 21:4).

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When I ponder over the end of time, it reminds of Noah’s day. Here I see God’s mighty wrath and how disgusted He is with evilness (Genesis 6:5). This leads me to believe when God sees fit and starts humanity’s final judgment it will become as frightening as or worse than in Noah’s generation. And the way I keep myself on the narrow road is spending private time with Christ.

God’s gives you this new vision so you can live in the new heaven and earth (Revelation 21:1). He set this in motion the moment He saved you. His grace gave you perfect eternal sight where the Light of Christ shines brightly. This is not of your making but His love for you.

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Our best preparation is placing Christ as our number one priority and live in God’s purpose. We need to be watchful, and the one who can point out the actual signs is God.

What’s your outlook?

 

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God’s Shocking Way of Defeating Evil

One fascinating example of God’s unique way of defeating wickedness is in the book of Habakkuk. Habakkuk lived in a time where ungodliness became an epidemic. Evilness a normal occurrence and the mistreatment of others a common theme causing him grief. He had been praying for God’s intervention, but the answers didn’t come (Habakkuk 1:2-4).

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During this time of human existence, the Israelites lived in disobedience. They weren’t being held captive or suppressed from another nation, but their defiance against God had peaked. And God unleashed His wrath by using an unimaginable source to wipe out their evil ways.

God showed Habakkuk His plan, and it wasn’t the one the Prophet was expecting. God explained to him a shocking plan of eradicating this rebellion (Habakkuk 1:5). He called on the Chaldean nation to carry out His wrath. They were a ruthless and wicked society.

This must have been troubling for Habakkuk since the Chaldean’s were a pagan nation centered in living a life unacceptable with God. Their disregard for human life left a trail of death and destruction. Many nations feared them, yet God guided them to carry out His will.

In the Twentieth Century, a similar act of violence to Habakkuk’s experience erupted. World War Two showed the world an up close and personal look at wickedness. This war was full of evilness.

The Holocaust, millions of human casualties and massive amounts of physical injuries from its devastation caused by evil men. But God upheld His promise to Noah (Genesis 8:21) and lined up nations together to defend humanity. And one of God’s allies was Russia a notion with evil intentions.

 

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Today we face terrorism an unpredictable evil. This wickedness strikes when the world least expects it, and places fear around the globe. The evil men behind the terror have strategic targets aimed at disrupting Christ’s peace.

God has slowed their progress but hasn’t acted on His plan to cut out this evil threat. But remember your salvation secures a place in God’s kingdom and no matter how frightful the world becomes Christ has defeated evil (1 Corinthians 15:57).

God never stops defeating evil. Throughout humanity, His mighty hand has overtaken the worst evil Satan has inflicted in trying to overthrow His kingdom. God’s word doesn’t explain the exact time He pushed the devil out of His sovereignty. But we know He did (Job 1:6-12) and the reason (Isaiah 14:12-13). And in the lives of the unsaved soul, Satan’s terror runs wild because without Christ salvation is elusive.

God doesn’t show humans everything, but faith leads us to God’s wisdom. Satan is one of God’s hidden mysteries. But God has exposed the devil’s ways by showing us his hideous works. And Adam and Eve’s experience proves God loves humans and even though their disobedience upset Him they saw Him defeat the cunning serpent (Genesis 3:14-15).

Our generation parallels with Habakkuk’s time on earth. We face the same enemy of God as this Prophet encountered. God protected Habakkuk because he was faithful and Christ does the same for us. We are blessed to be chosen to live a spiritual life beyond the flesh and be able to meet Habakkuk in heaven!

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A Endless Knowledge of Christ

God never fails and makes salvation full of incredible experiences. When Christ inspired Apostle Peter to show the faithful a way of adding value to their faith (2 Peter 1:5-7) it opened the door to an eternal understanding of Jesus’ ministry. Everything a believer needs to know is made available. Because God takes care of the faithful and Peter’s message sheds truth on His integrity.

The greatest revelation of Peter’s good news comes in his closing truths.

 “For so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” (2 Peter 1-11).

God’s truths speak volumes and in this scripture, we understand our spiritual stability comes from adding to our faith. When we show Christ our loyalty then we find a passageway into an infinite security so strong nothing can close its door. And for us to receive a constant flow of this undeniable truth we need to continue growing our faith.

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God loves faithful people, and He opens the gateway to a never ending relationship with Christ. This incredible reality comes from our willingness to glorify God by channeling our lives over to Christ’s sovereignty. And God never stops shedding His grace on those who live in Christ’s body.

Thinking over God’s promise of an eternal relationship with Christ inspires us to give God our best efforts. Christ wants us to live in His kingdom, and this remarkable unity keeps us coming back. Receiving God’s charitable gifts (Isaiah 58:11) comes from growing our trust in Christ. And this helps us live holy in an ungrateful world.

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The best way to understand how significant Christ is to salvation we need to look back in Biblical times. Our ancient ancestors of the Old Testament relied on Prophets and Prophetess to teach them God’s commandments. God had them carry out sacrifices to connect them with His Spirit. God used several Prophets to show His plan for Christ. Once God brought Christ from heaven a new way of receiving salvation emerged. Today we are included in God’s new covenant.

God delivered Christ to the Jews and after Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension made His Son the way to heaven. The Lord simplified salvation, opened it up to everyone on earth (Jew and Gentile) and now wants to keep the door to Christ wide open. And to receive God’s promise of having a never-ending bond with Christ means building a faith full of action.

 Now that Peter has shown us God’s generous offerings for adding Christian principles then we understand the room for more growth. It  doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned veteran or new believer. God has commanded us to keep growing, and Christ will give us the strength to continue adding Christian value. By placing Christ as our top priority and nurturing our faith we can’t go wrong because God’s rewards make it well worth the effort.

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Loving God with the Heart

Love is the most sought after human experience. Everyone wants to receive love since it brings us incredible joy. Unlike any other emotion, love touches us in the most heartfelt way. This peaceful and serene spiritual connection is in every person and created by God. Nothing in God’s kingdom is designed by accident because He is love.

“He who does not love does not love God, for God is love,” (1 John 4:8).

Loving God with the heart isn’t complicated. It’s simple yet without Christ it’s elusive. Throughout the Old Testament, God used Prophets to show the Israelites’ how to find themselves with His kingdom. But they couldn’t stay faithful and lived in constant disobedience. Their hearts corrupted by sin blocking out God’s Light and keeping them from obedience. And when God gave them Christ they crucified Him. It’s in the way our ancient ancestors followed God that we get an up close picture of an unloving heart.

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Conformity is one of God’s best spiritual gifts. When we conform our lives over to God’s commands, then we are showing Him our loving heart. And by humbling ourselves over to Christ’s care, our loyalty to God’s rules is strengthened. Remember our flesh is weak but our spirits will stay firm on God’s words (Matthew 26:41).

God’s forgiveness opens the door to your new heart and its Christ’s death and resurrection that purifies the heart. And with God’s new covenant (Hebrews 9:14-15) in place then you can love Him with your heart. It’s here where God wants to love through Christ. Jesus is God’s greatest love for us and by becoming a part of Christ’s body, we become sons of God (Galatians 3:26). And what an honor to be called God’s son or daughter!

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Repentance is an excellent example of a loving heart for God. One of the biggest complaints unbelievers have is witnessing a Christian, who isn’t willing to repent. I’m not saying repentance is easy, or we don’t sin (Romans 3:23). But when a Christian proclaims Christ and doesn’t show God remorse for disobedience then their lives don’t show a saved soul.

Real repentance is admitting our disobedience to God followed by a sincere effort to make personal sacrifices unpopular to the world but acceptable with Christ. It’s our actions after confessing the sin that shows those around us if we love God.

With our new hearts, we enjoy serving Christ and obeying God. It’s the way Christ loves us that inspires us to live a life devoted to God. Christ is an incredible gift from God, and we can’t afford to miss out on heaven. Jesus’s love is infinite and never goes away. The best way we can love God is submitting ourselves to Christ and stay active in spreading His Good News.

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The Art of Selflessness

The art of selflessness is letting go of expectations (Luke 6:35). Expecting something in return for doing a good deed is a set up for disappointment. Nothing spiritual comes from self-searching motives. The purity of selflessness is anonymity. And it pleases God when we do something for someone without personal recognition.

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Our best teacher of selflessness is God. Our Father’s undeniable love and unselfish sacrifice of Christ proves His selflessness. God wants to save everyone and His altruistic plan defines His love for humanity. It’s sad to realize not everyone hears God’s call, and this makes helping others crucial in our Christian journey.

It isn’t hard being unselfish to those we love, but when a stranger asks this becomes a tougher challenge. A major stumbling block in reaching out to a unfamiliar person is self-centered fear. Fearfulness in uncertainty isn’t the Christian’s way because Christ has given us eternal security and the courage to do God’s will. With Christ’s armor, we are not afraid because our strength comes from God. Remember we are no longer apart from God’s kingdom and need to live in His purpose. Don’t be troubled over the reasons people ask for your help because it’s better to give than disobey.

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In the Gospel of Matthew, we find God’s commands of selflessness. Christ said when He comes in the day of judgement; He will separate the righteous nations from the selfish ones (Matthew 25:32-33).

To the righteous Christ said; Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world (Matthew 25:34). God never forgets those who love Him and rewards them with eternal grace.

Christ said this concerning selflessness. “For I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink; I was a stranger and you took me in; I was naked and you clothed me; I was sick and you visited me; I was in prison and you came to me,” (Matthew 25:35-36). Here, Christ is conveying God’s approval for doing right. Those actions radiate the compassion God’s Spirit places inside the hearts of the faithful.

Those human problems are a call for action from Christ to help others. Here Christ shows the responses a Spirit-filled life takes when confronted with those needing comfort. The essence of selflessness is staying aware of one’s environment, noticing other’s struggles and providing help. And Christ has left us no doubt salvation includes putting aside personal interests and working for the welfare of others.

Jesus identified hunger, thirst, strangers, nakedness, sickness and incarceration as examples of needy things. And Christ shows us the actions necessary in providing those needs. Selflessness is the core of kindness. Every time we give of ourselves with a pure heart, it pleases God.

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Christ identified the eternal outcome of the unrighteous. “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). God’s displeasure with evil doers is harsh, and the Bible is full of scriptures addressing His disappointment with disbelievers. We can’t escape God’s rules and if we don’t repent our eternal resting place won’t be with Him.

Our Messiah’s message is telling us when we help others we are extending God’s provisions. And by following God’s will our knowledge of eternity becomes reality. Jesus didn’t leave out the penalty for disobeying this truth. He pointed this out to the selfish. “Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me” (Matthew 25:45).

Christ finishes His message with a warning. “And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life” (Matthew 25:46). God’s truth on helping others is obvious. Repentance is the key, and the good deed of selflessness is an act of repentance.

Another place to practice altruism is in adjusting our personal agenda to help aid others. Sometimes our lives become busy and when someone asks for help we say no. Yes, we have times when we can’t stop the task at hand and help. God understands, but if we do this every time we need to examine ourselves and take an honest look at our motives. Often our greatest spiritual growth comes from stopping what we are doing and help others.

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God never stops reaching out His hand to give us help. Christ doesn’t say “I’m too busy find someone else.” Our holy purpose is to glorify God, and when we make ourselves unavailable to others, we have fallen off the narrow way. Each of us and often unintentional is selfish.  Salvation doesn’t make us perfect, but it’s not an excuse to discard God’s will.

When I was a drunkard selfishness fueled my heart. I made myself the center of attention and focused on my plans. I had no room to be selfless because self-gratification ruled my motives. Sin had overtaken my spirit and enslaved to a life of darkness. I’m grateful for God because Christ has broken the chains of my evil ways.

It brings me great joy to share with you Christ’s Good News. Today He has opened my eyes and given me many opportunities to help others. And when I act on those God’s grace emerges and inspires me to become a better servant. I struggle with selflessness and experience the pains of selfishness but the more I pick up my cross those times are becoming less. I love Christ and want to learn from His wisdom and one way I can show Him my love is helping others.

One of the most gratifying Christian experience is doing something for someone without them knowing. Selfless giving is rewarding, uplifting and full of God’s love. God makes no mistakes and rejoices when one of His children acts out of the kindness of the heart and stays unnoticed. And the result selflessness brings is experiencing a stronger bond with Christ.

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The Fruits of Humility

It’s in glorifying God that we understand the fruits of holiness. This begins with placing Christ as our primary focus and living in God’s truth. Humility is the best way to approach God because we didn’t save ourselves (Titus 3:4-7). Christ’s enemy tries his best to convince us we don’t need God and places thoughts inside our minds telling us we can do everything on our own.

Our world is full of temptations wanting us to turn our backs on God and live in the lusts of Satan’s deception. Every few months a new technological advancement hits the market leading us to place the focus on ourselves and away from Christ. The devil is cunning and uses materialism to lure us into an unsatisfactory spiritual condition because he knows the lack of humility separates from God.

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Paul’s Epistle to Titus is one of the best illustration of humility. In Chapter Three verse two Paul shared This: “to speak evil of no one, to be peaceful, gentle, showing all humility to all men” (Titus 3:2). Here, Paul identifies humility as love, peace, and kindness. He reminds us to be an example of God’s Spirit. And God’s mercy holds us accountable to do the same with our neighbors.

Paul continued his message by showing us the reason for humility.

“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit. Whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior. That having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I want you to affirm constantly, that those who believe in God should be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable to men,” (Titus 3:4-8).

Those scriptures provide God’s truth concerning the origins of salvation and leaves no excuses for self-righteousness. Here God places us in humility because He gives us knowledge of His plan for humanity’s eternal outcome.

Once God brings us mercy, then He uses Christ to wash us clean from sin and renews us through His Spirit. It’s God’s Spirit that makes us humble because He has opened our eyes to eternal light.

Since God showed us humility, shouldn’t we do the same?

The Lord saved us, and part of our duty is to extend God’s saving grace to those around us. Our lives must radiate to others (believers and unbelievers) God’s gift of salvation. God chose us and made us powerful examples of His mercy to humanity. And when we live in Christ, the world comes face to face with God’s love.

One way of staying humble is remembering our past and what Christ has done for us. Again God used Paul to shows us we too are sinners. Paul put it this way. “For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating each other” (Titus 3:3). Those are the facts stemming from Adam and Eve’s great fall from God’s grace and passed on to humanity. And no human being on earth is excluded from sin.

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I used to live life for myself. My life before receiving God’s grace was full of pride. Everything I did was to glorify myself, and this caused others to stay away from me. I lived in constant fear and resented rejection. Selfish motives turned me into a taker looking for ways to receive instead of giving. Everything I chased was for self-satisfaction often involving lustful actions.

I’m grateful God saved me. Christ has changed my life, and He removed my need to rely on myself. The Lord showed me eternal light and since then I’m willing to live my life for Christ. I know God wants to help you too and He will the moment you ask in faith without reservations.

We can’t afford to forget God’s unconditional compassion. God’s truth makes us humble, and abiding in Christ keeps us modest. God has called us to a spiritual way of living and the more we devote ourselves then we can live humble and receive His grace (James 4:6). And once Christ sanctifies us, then we can show others the fruits of humility.

God is awesome!

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Chapter 6 Perseverance

God is an excellent creator. He knew we needed to stand firm on His word. Our Father understood the trials and tribulations sin causes and left us humans with a way back into His grace (Romans 3:20-24). Its placing our faith in Christ that we receive the recipe for salvation. And one of the key ingredients of a saving faith is perseverance.

Christ is our greatest teacher in endurance (Hebrews 12:2). Our Messiah’s death, resurrection, and ascension is God’s way of showing us the example of an unyielding trust. Everything the Pharisees and Roman Soldiers inflicted He endured with an unshakable courage. Christ withstood the pains of physical death, and His resurrection opened the door for us to live with Him forever.

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Perseverance is indispensable to living in God’s Spirit. We will experience times when our spiritual life becomes a challenge. It’s difficult staying focused on living righteous in uncomfortable circumstances. Sometimes we give our best efforts and fall short. God understands we are not perfect and is pleased when we continue humbling ourselves.

Remember, we live in a broken world where sin dominates and others say hurtful words. This makes it imperative for us to be persistent in our Christian walk. No matter how faltering we become it’s our willingness to follow Christ (2 John 1:9) that enables us to overcome adversity.

Perseverance keeps us concentrated on God’s promises because with Christ as our anchor nothing can separate us from heaven. The more willing we are to stay faithful under every circumstance then our trust in God grows, and we can withstand the storms of life.

What are the essential principles of perseverance?

Hope and willingness build an uncompromising Christian foundation. They are the essence of devotion and replaces complacency with spiritual actions. God is pleased when we continue seeking Christ in both good and challenging times. By practicing those attributes we show God our hearts and prove our faith.

We will suffer the temptations of the flesh and by staying focused on our Christian walk our ability to live holy increases. God’s gift of salvation assures us of our inheritance to heaven (1 Peter 1:3-4). And when we embrace Christ nothing can shake us from His grip because God’s enemy is defenseless against the purity of Christ. Living in God’s Spirit turns our tribulations into stepping-stones and takes away the pains of sin.

  Hope

Hope is trusting in the Lord without reservations. God’s truth isn’t a theory, and the Holy Spirit gives testimony to this. Christ our great intercessor (Romans 8:34) guarantees security in God’s house (Romans 8:31-39). In Christ we are on solid ground, rich in God’s Spirit and able to live faithful in a world full of temptations. Nothing in Satan’s domain (the world) can overtake God and our unity in His Trinity give us an eternal hope.

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In Paul’s Epistle to the Romans he showed us the fruits of hope.

Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.  Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. (Romans 5:1-5)

It’s here, where Paul identifies eternal hope and defines the way God responds to those who abide in Christ. Faith is the leader of conviction and gives birth to endurance. We can’t escape tribulations and hope keeps our eyes on heaven (Colossians 3:1-2). Christ has defeated sin and in distressful circumstances, we find peace because God sheds grace on those who live in His will.

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Rejoicing in tribulations isn’t easy since they bring discomfort to our hearts. But without accepting them, we can’t unlock the door of perseverance and build Christian morals. It’s Christ who removes our carnal outlook on troubles, replaces it with an eternal vision and gives insight to its fruitfulness. Once we understand trials are opportunities to grow our faith, then we find eternal security and know our hope is real. The more we respond to life in a spiritual way our Christian lives shines and Christ gives us the courage to accept the realities of the flesh.

 

God promises justice to those who are loyal to Christ. Christ sanctifies us, and this leads us to God, who anoints us with the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit is the most satisfying human experience one can have with God because it’s the way God pours out His undeniable love. Here we are living in God’s kingdom and experiencing real salvation.

Another way hope bears fruit is through spreading Christ’s message with others. Disciple Peter explained it this way.

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.” (1 Peter 3:15-17 NIV)

Those verses look complicated to comprehend, but they are simple. Here Peter addresses glorifying (revere) Christ as the Lord. When we follow God’s command and place our faith in Christ’s hands then, we become fit to share with others the wisdom of salvation. This wisdom isn’t from us but comes from the Holy Spirit. Christ is the one that prepares us to speak the truth, and God’s Spirit places the words we are to share in expressing them with others. It’s the Holy Spirit that sanctifies us and radiates our eternal hope.

Carrying the gospel comes with responsibility, and this makes it crucial to guard against self-righteousness. God is watching the way we present His word and when we share it with love our conscious stays pure. Remember we are working for Christ, and God knows man’s hearts, so we don’t have to be judgmental.

God is the judge and when we are rejected or persecuted for proclaiming Christ; He will make them accountable. Rejection is tough, and its painful being persecuted but salvation teaches us God despises evil doers.

Hope keeps us persevering because we understand our stay on earth is temporary. Apostle Paul sums up hope this way.

“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)

 Willingness

Willingness plays a major role in persevering. Christ knows we become discouraged and doesn’t expect us to have an abundance of willingness. Jesus used the mustard seed to explain the smallest quantity of faith yields an abundance of God’s blessings (Matthew 17:20). Well, the same holds true in our Christian efforts. The Lord isn’t concerned with the quantity of action but takes notice of its quality.

One of the toughest circumstance to stay willing is when troubles arise, and we become overwhelmed. Sometimes life events happen close together, and we can’t find relief. We might assume God has abandoned us because we are experiencing many calamities. Those occurrences are common, and it’s through Christ we find calmness under every known predicament to humanity.

We are never alone since Christ is the same today as He was yesterday and will be tomorrow (Hebrews 13:8). And by exerting Christian efforts no problem or trouble is too large for God. The Lord is waiting for us to turn to Christ and the moment we surrender, our suffering fades away. Then we realize our greatest relief is improving our personal relation with Christ.

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The Prophet Isaiah spoke these words: “If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land” (Isaiah 1:19). Obedience takes persistent action, and willingness is the backbone of effort. Sometimes it takes everything in us to keep our minds focused on God’s truth because Christ’s enemy tries its best to turn us away. We are secure in Christ and by staying active in our devotion, God will heal our spiritual wounds.

Our brethren Peter left us an outstanding message of perseverance: “as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby” (1 Peter 2:2). It’s in developing a personal relationship with Christ that keeps us moving forward instead of retreating. And the best way to know Christ is embracing God’s word. When everything around us becomes uncertain; God’s word brings comfort to the heart and soothes our souls.

The Bible holds the key to finding the way God intends for us to handle the agony of the flesh. Everything Christ taught on living in God’s Spirit is written throughout its pages and is at our disposal. Our personal experience with God’s grace keeps us eager to continue seeking Christ and this where willingness aligns itself with perseverance.

Early in my salvation impatience got the best of me. I wanted instant relief from my problems and God’s answers came at a slow, subtle pace. Since then, as I have grown in spiritual maturity, my ability to wait (Romans 8:25) for His answers has increased. This has taught me to practice perseverance and continue taking action even when I don’t hear God’s voice. I love God and the way He works in my life. Today, when I struggle and strive to live in Christ, everything turns out better than I could have imagined.

When we stay humble and place Christ above everything in our lives, remarkable changes transpire. Nothing in God’s plan is an accident. The inner peace Christ brings us comes from our willingness to stay focused and not yield to our problems. It’s in persevering where we draw closer to God and find serenity. Without persistent devotion, we can agree life is unbearable.

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