Archive for January, 2016

Salvation is True Freedom!

14 For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin.

On the occasion of my country’s Republic Day, I feel compelled to write on freedom and what it truly entails because today the only freedom the average Indian knows is freedom from the British Raj, which is something like the Israelites of Jesus’ time seeking Christ only to save Israel from Roman rule. The individual on the other hand is clueless about his/her own nature before God, of how enslaved he/she is to sin.

1John 2
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.

Before I knew the Lord Jesus Christ as my Saviour from revealed scripture, I was just another sinfully predictive human being, who sought nothing more than self-gratification in life. If we look at 1Jn2:16 we see there are 3 facets of bondage drivers in this world that deter people from finding freedom in God i.e. the lust of the flesh, which is pleasure dealing with indulgence of the senses beyond that which is healthy; then the lust of the eyes, which is power: craving that which is beyond our means. Third being the boastful pride of life, which you see in the faces of people who are full of themselves.

Gen 3
6 When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.

These three facets of bondage, show its self as also driving the fallen nature of Adam and Eve, where when Eve saw the tree was good for food, it accounted for her lust of the flesh i.e. it pleased her senses beyond that which was good for life. Whereas when she saw it was a delight to the eyes, that was her lust of the eyes i.e. a craving for power. Finally, her opinion outside the righteousness of God to find the fruit desirable to make her wise (Prov1:7) was what wet her worldly appetite towards the pride of life. Today, yielding to this fallen pride/pleasure/power is what enslaves the actions of all the people in the world, who are as much under the sway of Satan (1Jn5:19) as Adam and Eve were, when they fell to disobedience. Herein is our bondage to sin, our very nature from Adam.

Mat 5
39 “But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.
40 “If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also.
41 “Whoever forces you to go one mile, go with him two.
42 “Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you.
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’
44 “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,
45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
46 “For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?
47 “If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same?
48 “Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

If we were to look at the above scripture from the perspective of the world, it comes across as only a good teaching which is not practical. Ironically, the world also recognises much of the success of these teachings as having played a role in India’s non-violent freedom movement driven by Mahatma Gandhi.

Proverbs 16
7 When a man’s ways are pleasing to the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

As the Lord Jesus says, an individual can serve only one of two masters, either he/she shall serve God or he/she shall serve money (Lk16:13). As it is with the world, these are given to only serve themselves outside the righteousness of God, for such is the nature they have received from Adam, that they cannot even consider the thought of trusting God with their lives, in being consistently yet cautiously good (Mt10:16). That in obeying Jesus, it is God who preserves them from the wicked (Ps37:40).

Rom 5
17 For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.

Life is therefore a pilgrimage for an individual who seeks the Lord in the midst of the moral defilements of this world and just as one would stop to take directions, so also the real question on which the individual must pause to ponder is: How can he/she live a life that is pleasing to God? Its answer is sited in Micah 6:8.

Micah 6
8 He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God?

John 15 (Jesus’ words)
4 “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.
5 “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

Like an electronic appliance that cannot function without electricity, so too Micah 6:8 cannot materialize unless the individual goes through a spiritual rebirth, which comes through believing in the Lord Jesus Christ (Jn3:3/2Cor5:17). There are three aspects to this saving faith: Knowledge, Intellectual Assent & Trust. These three are all given to the believer in Salvation. Where knowledge is of things which are spiritually appraised (1Cor2:14), while intellectual assent is to dwell on the substance that is our faith and know its fullness in the Lord Jesus Christ (Lk24:32) and finally trust is what distinguishes the sheep from the goats and the angels from demons and that is where, after having the knowledge and intellectual assent the believer is given to exercise his/her faith in waiting on the Lord in faith (Is40:31/Mt25:1-13).

Rom 10
8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”–that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,
9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

There is but one name i.e. Jesus Christ in which there is Salvation and God’s good pleasure, that those who desire the Lord Jesus Christ, are given a circumcision of heart (Rom2:29) that they live not as in serving themselves but in serving God (Col3:23-24).

Rom 7
24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?
25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.

In Salvation therefore is true freedom for every man, woman and child because Jesus is the way, the truth and the life (Jn14:6). Besides our nature to sin, is only nauseating at its height because it marks our unhealthy spiritual estate and sinful bondage before God and so to live life to its fullest is to begin a journey as though it were our life’s pilgrimage to know the Lord Jesus Christ from the Bible.

God bless!

The Lord’s Joy is the strength of the Godly!

Psalms 37
4 Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart.

Everybody loves to have a good time. We all look forward to that office party or a Christmas or New Year’s party or even a wedding for that matter and there is nothing wrong with that. However, life’s events are like a bunch of things that fly past you and if you want to shoot down your game, you got to align your desires with what pleases God i.e. your will in line with God’s will, which is like the foresight and hindsight of a rifle. Unless these are aligned your life shall always experience those consistent moments of emptiness and lack of substance.

Jeremiah 9
23 Thus says the LORD, “Let not a wise man boast of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man boast of his might, let not a rich man boast of his riches;
24 but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things,” declares the LORD.

I am so moved to write on the Joy of the Lord, which is something I have found immense strength in. For the Joy of the Lord is the strength of the Godly (Neh8:10) and to know the Lord Jesus Christ (Phil4:13) in this manner is to possess the unyielding perseverance of a living spirit, given us by the Holy Spirit from the merit of Christ who accomplished the salvation of His elect. This is Christian motivation, where at the apex of such joy is gratitude (Col3:15-16); unlike those who live to please themselves with monetary love, fornication, drugs and drunkenness, only to be left feeling squeamish at the height of their foolish pleasure.

Isaiah 40
31 Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.

John 15 (Jesus says)
5 “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

So for those who are interested in knowing what it takes to delight in God, you must know, it first requires you to desire God, and the Bible says that you will only have that, when God gives it to you, not otherwise (Jn3:3&6:44). If you do not know God, you will only be moved by the current trend of what people generally perceive about God, which is something Jesus is not quite interested in (Mk8:29) because unlike the apostate religions of this world, believing in Jesus means having personal and intimate relationship with God and that does not involve a one size fits all carpet policy (1Cor12:4-20).

John 14 (Jesus says)
15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.

James 2
14 What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him?
15 If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food,
16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that?
17 Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.

Some of you may know that love by definition is not merely a feeling but a verb, which is a state of action. Such is saving faith, it goes beyond mushy feelings concerning God to doing what pleases God and absolutely enjoying it because the Joy of the Lord is the strength of the Godly.

Rom 10
8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”–that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,
9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

For those who are drawn to know God, you must realize that to know God is to love God. It is with any relationship that to know a person intimately… their likes/dislikes (am not talking about sexual immorality), is to explore love in all its substance and depth. Like a man and a woman who catch each other’s eye and go about getting to know each other, if they are serious. So too it is with the Godly, who are moved to know more about God from the Bible (Ps34:8), for so they have relished morsels of God’s goodness and begin to hunger for the company of Christ (Mt18:20) through the knowledge of Spirit inspired scripture (2Tim3:16-17).

Psalms 34
8 O taste and see that the LORD is good; How blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!

1Jn 4 (check this up with Jn15:5)
16 We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

19 We love, because He first loved us.

Love makes any person feel supercharged and that is how it is to truly put your trust in the Triune God Almighty, who is Love. Just as one is given to do things and please whom they love, so it is with the Christian, who is given to live by Godly conduct, which is according to God’s good pleasure. This love is not merely a puff of vapour that disappears with the wind but a truth/fact that explains our very existence under the grace and mercy of God (Eph2:8-9), displayed absolutely in the redemptive works of the Lord Jesus Christ (1Jn2:2).

Gen 1
28 God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

Col 1
19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him,
20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.

Adam may have borne the misfortune of the fall but in Christ the stewardship of man is renewed, in being reconciled to God. For where Adam failed, Christ pleased God in being obedient even up to the point of death (Phil2:8). The earth thereby looks forward to these who believe in Jesus (Rom8:19), who are received as sons and daughters by God for Christ sake (Jn1:12). Such is the good pleasure Christ merited for all the elect unto God.

John 14
6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.

To conclude, you ought to pray, asking Jesus to help you yield to God’s good pleasure and therein relish the course of your life through every trial because the Joy of the Lord is like a gyroscope that helps you in any given situation to maintain an orientation that is healthy and fulfilling in God who is Sovereign over all.

A Precis on Holy Fear

What is Fear? Fear is what defines a person’s outlook to life. There are essentially two types of fear, Holy Fear and Unholy Fear. Unholy fear is what drives those outside Christ, to either live in anxiety or by being instruments of anxiety, who Lord It Over their peers (Mat 20:25-28). These fools look up to the works of the wicked with an awe that almost equals worship and it is from this disposition that these usurp the respect of people fallen in Adam, and in this manner Satan’s minions devour these unbelieving fools (Gen 3:14-19).

Mat 24
28″Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.

Holy Fear on the other hand is one given an individual who is born from above (Jn 3:3/Mat 10:28/Heb 10:31). Who believes in his heart of hearts that God exists and so is called to live a life of righteousness as described by God and not of self (Prov 3:5). From the fear of God, this individual musters the strength of Christ (Phil 4:13), to influence his neighbours unto the righteousness of God like a little salt that flavours a whole lot of food. People are not the standard his/her life adheres to but God is. Hence even when no one is looking, he/she is given to love the Lord with all His/Her strength and treat their neighbour (Mk 12:29-31) with the same love and respect as they would expect for themselves in all truth.

Psalms 111
10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments; His praise endures forever.

As much as it is Christ who saves, and faith is merely the means by which we trust in Him, so too what we fear, is not the commandment but God. For the commandment merely sets healthy moral boundaries as given by God, which the people who transgress them do not recognize nor respect only because they live their lives as though being indifferent to God. Just as in Gen 3:2, 3, 6; Eve kept God’s commandments knowing the fear of God but when she lost her Reverence for God (Holy Fear) she died spiritually from having believed Satan’s lies that the fruit was good to eat and ate of it in disobedience.

John 14:15 (Jesus says)
15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.

So to conclude, Holy Fear finds its strength in God to exercise the righteousness which is of Christ in the midst of an unbelieving society and this is what defines a God Fearing person. For e.g. an unbelieving person may yield to piracy and abortion only because everybody is doing it but even if the whole world robs and murders, a robbery is still a robbery and murder is still murder; so the God-Fearing man yields before God in the righteousness God Himself has defined in His Moral Law. Unholy Fear on the other hand is what drives a person to either exercise their fallen authority or be consumed by anxiety, as being deceived or shall I say in being consumed by Satan. Fear therefore is what distinguishes the people who truly worship God (Ps 128:1) from those who are under the sway of Satan (1Jn 5:19).

It takes a fool to make a fool

1John 5
19 We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.

Revelation 20
2 And he laid hold of the dragon, the serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years;

Luke 9
25 For what is a man profited if he gains the whole world, and loses or forfeits himself?

We live in a world, which loves to believe that only the intelligent, can fool/deceive other people. We see that is movies like Ocean’s Eleven, Fast and Furious, The Italian Job etc. This precisely is the deception, Satan has ensnared upon the world through the fall of Adam (Gen3:1-6). Those who believe this in their heart of hearts, standing in awe of wickedness as a glorious means of survival, are those who wear the mark of the beast on their “forehead and right arm (Rev13:16-17)”, as these “think and act” according to their own lawless nature from Adam (Gen3:5-6), which defines the very fabric of their lifestyle.

Gen3 (Adam & Eve cast out of Eden)
24 So He drove the man out; and at the east of the garden of Eden He stationed the cherubim and the flaming sword which turned every direction to guard the way to the tree of life.

Isaiah 6
9 He said, “Go, and tell this people: ‘Keep on listening, but do not perceive; Keep on looking, but do not understand.’
10 “Render the hearts of this people insensitive, Their ears dull, And their eyes dim, Otherwise they might see with their eyes, Hear with their ears, Understand with their hearts, And return and be healed.”

We therefore understand that the reprobate only resists the righteousness of God because God has not initiated His redeeming grace towards them, as He has done with His elect in Christ (Lk7:22/1Jn4:19). These reprobate are those who are spiritual dead to God from Adam, given over to Satan and his minions to devour (Gen3:14,19/Mat24:28/1Pet5:8).

1 The fool has said in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, they have committed abominable deeds; There is no one who does good.

Psalms 111
10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments; His praise endures forever.

What then is wisdom? It is the right application of knowledge! If any of you remember, earlier, education was a ministry and children then were better behaved in schools and colleges but today education is just another racket, for people looking to make a name for themselves in the public eye and further their own vested political agenda, while children in schools today are just another bunch of goons in the making, devoid of any fear of God.

Today we have people who finish their engineering degree, only to then go join some terrorist organization. It was once perceived that people who were educated were better behaved and knew how to be courteous without being told to. However, that doesn’t happen today even among the crème de la crème of the educated lot because the fear of the Lord has no bearing in the lives of these godless fools.

Isaiah 14
12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

Looking therefore at Isaiah 14:13 and Psalms 14:1 (above), we notice that Satan is also a fool to think that any person but God could be God.

Let us read some of the ten commandments in Exodus 20 to understand the moral standard God requires believers to exhibit in their lives.

12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the LORD your God gives you.
13 “You shall not murder.
14 “You shall not commit adultery.
15 “You shall not steal.
16 “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife or his male servant or his female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

If we look at the world today, we see murder legalized through abortion, fornication/adultery as defining social behaviour in society, covetousness as being the basis of most friendships and bearing false witness as the means of having your way in life. I have only mentioned six of the ten commandment because if a person were to ponder this with any intellectual honesty, he/she would understand that if this defines their love for their neighbour whom they can see, then they are nothing short of liars, if they claimed to love God, whom they cannot see (1Jn4:20). This is the wisdom of the world, where it takes a fool to make a fool.

1 Corinthians 1
20 Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?

8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”–that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,
9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

Where then is wisdom, it is in earnestly seeking the truth about God (Mat7:7-8). Knowing we are nothing but sinners before His Holy Majesty. God is good and to yield our lives to Him is to confess Jesus as Lord over our lives (Rom10:9), acknowledging in our heart of hearts that Salvation belongs to Him in propitiating the sins of His elect (1Jn4:10). For to know Jesus as Lord, is to know who presides over your life and to be acquainted with such truth in the midst of all the world’s lies about God, requires wisdom, which comes from Holy Fear (Ps111:10), knowing unto whom your life is truly accountable.

7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.
8 “For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.

Remember, God is most formidable (Heb10:31) and the reason people loves lies and hatefully detest truth concerning themselves and God is because we are all by nature sinners, the rotting fruit of Adams disobedience.

23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus;
25 whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed;
26 for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

18 For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
19 For it is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, And the cleverness of the clever I will set aside.”

25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

As Col 1:16 says: ALL CREATION GLORIFIES GOD, and yes even every individual, glorifies either God’s mercy in Salvation or God’s justice in damnation. So just as God made the night the darkest before first light to depict the nature of Christ second coming (Rev20:7-10). So too, the nature of the reprobate who destroy themselves from deliberate ignorance, being outside the propitiating power of Christ, their destruction is pictured in the social structure of an animal called the lemming (Mat7:13).

Concerning Mat7:13, kindly note the road to destruction is broad, not because many more travel it but because it is easier to give in to our fallen nature from Adam. However, the narrow path of God’s holiness is tread more often (Rev7:9-10) because the people who traverse that path, their Salvation is made possible by God (Mt19:26).

Mat11:28 (Jesus’ word)
27 “All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.
28 “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.
29 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
30 “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

So as a member of Jesus’ Church (Rev22:17), I conclude by saying this to you all, who are of this world: take off the wool that fool Satan and pulled over your eyes, step out of the rat race, this world is so blindly committed to; come over and find your rest in Christ, dear friend.

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