Do You Need to Obey The Ten Commandments to Go To Heaven? (Gospel Light Minute X #366)

This is the “chief of sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, with the Gospel Light Minute X Podcast #366 titled, “Do You Need to Obey The Ten Commandments to Go To Heaven?” I’m here to remind you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me.

There is a lot of confusion about the Ten Commandments given to Moses by God. Many people believe that they must follow the Law so that they can go to Heaven, but the Bible does not say that!

God’s Book, the Bible, states in 1 Timothy 1:8, “But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully;” The Ten Commandments are good if you use them the right way, but some people use them the wrong way. God never intended for us to keep them in an effort to go to Heaven. So why were the Ten Commandments given? Continue reading “Do You Need to Obey The Ten Commandments to Go To Heaven? (Gospel Light Minute X #366)”

The Amazing Obedience of the Wise Men, Joseph, and Mary (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 39 / Day 406 since Jan. 1, 2016)

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TEXT: Matthew 2:11-15:

11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.

12 And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.

13 And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.

14 When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt:

15 And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son.

—-

Kenneth Latourette said, “One of the most amazing and significant facts of history is that within five centuries of its birth, Christianity won the professed allegiance of the overwhelming majority of the Roman Empire and even the support of the Roman state. Beginning as a seemingly obscure sect of Judaism, one of the scores, even hundreds of religions and religious groups which were competing within the realm, revering as its central figure one who had been put to death by the machinery of Rome.”

After the wise men met Jesus, they receive a message from God in a dream telling them not to go back to Herod with the news that they had found the Child. They obeyed this message and returned to their own land by another route. The obedience of the pagan astrologers to the divine message is yet more evidence that they understood that they were not dealing just with the arrival of human royalty, but with the long-awaited bursting forth of divinity upon mankind.

Previously, the wise men were beholden to human rulers, including Herod. But now that Jesus had arrived, they recognized that a higher authority was in control and that this higher authority was working in the earth to bring about His will. The wise men knew that they owed their allegiance to Him. Everyone who met Jesus during His earthly ministry was confronted with the same reality. Everyone had to pay allegiance to the secular Roman government or to the religious Jewish government. But Jesus claimed authority that was even higher. People had to decide if they would turn their allegiance to Jesus or continue following earthly authorities.

Craig S. Keener said, “That the Magi needed a supernatural revelation to warn them not to return by way of Jerusalem suggests their innocent naiveté. Even without Herod’s unadmirable character, few kings would be ready to surrender their own rule to a nonrelative some foreigners hailed as king! (For that matter, not only powerful people in society but many others today seem reluctant to acknowledge Jesus’ right to direct their lives.) The Magi’s innocence compared to Herod’s murderous shrewdness again reminds Matthew’s readers not to prejudge the appropriate recipients of the gospel. Jesus is for all who will receive him, and God may provide Jesus’ servants with allies in unexpected places if we have the wisdom to recognize them.”

The wise men, however, were not the only ones who received a warning from God on the night of their visit to the house of the Child Jesus. Joseph also received a warning that Herod would seek to “destroy” the “young child.” The angel of the Lord told Jesus’ earthly parents to take Him to Egypt in order to avoid the coming bloodbath. God could have protected His Son through supernatural means, but it is interesting that He chose to use human ones. Sending the Child to Egypt would have put Him out of Herod’s jurisdiction; it would have also fulfilled Hosea’s prophecy that the Messiah would be called “out of Egypt.”

The obedience of the wise men, and of Joseph and Mary, is an example for us today. We may not understand the mysterious ways in which God chooses to work, but we ought to choose to obey nevertheless. The wise men also faced a choice — whether to continue with their allegiance to earthly kings or to shift their allegiance to the King of Kings whom God had revealed to them in the Child Jesus. The eyes and minds of these pagans had been opened to the truth via the little that they had learned about Jesus. Our minds possess an even greater enlightenment regarding who God is through the complete revelation of Jesus Christ. Will we obey as the wise men did? Will we obey as Mary and Joseph did? Will we obey God? That is the question.

God made sure to preserve His Son’s life so that He could die as a sacrifice in order to save your soul. Here is how you can take advantage of His sacrifice today by believing in Him:

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at dw3@gospellightsociety.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

The Jesus Effect, Part 1 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 361)

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TEXT: John 21:1-8:

1 After these things Jesus shewed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise shewed he himself.

2 There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of his disciples.

3 Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.

4 But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus.

5 Then Jesus saith unto them, Children, have ye any meat? They answered him, No.

6 And he said unto them, Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes.

7 Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher’s coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.

8 And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were not far from land, but as it were two hundred cubits,) dragging the net with fishes.

———-

Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.

This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”

This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 361.

Alfred Plummer said, “There is no need to seek symbolical meanings for the right and left side of the disciples’ boat. The difference is not between right and left, but between working with and without Divine guidance.”

In the final chapter of the book of John, the post-resurrection narrative shifts to Galilee, specifically the Sea of Tiberius. It is significant that Jesus would appear to His disciples here because this region is where most of them came from and also where most of Jesus’ followers came from. As you may recall, the Galileans were seen as being of a lower class than the Jews from Judea. But Jesus found His most receptive audience among these people who were looked down on. This appearance of Jesus is also significant because the angel at the tomb, and later Jesus Himself, stated that He would appear to His disciples in Galilee. The first two appearances that John recorded took place in Jerusalem as far as we know.

While the other disciples are waiting for Jesus to arrive, Simon Peter announces, “I go a fishing.” No preamble, no talking it over with the other guys. Just, “I go a fishing.” Six of the other disciples decide to go with Peter — Thomas, Nathanael, James, John, and two others who are unnamed. The disciples are frequently criticized here for their willingness to go back to their former occupation so soon. But the Bible does not tell us that what they did was wrong or that they intended this as a way of turning their back on the ministry. Rather, it is just as likely that Peter, who had a wife and children, and the other disciples needed to make some money to take care of their earthly needs.

The Bible tells us that the disciples were out fishing on the boat all night, but caught nothing. In the morning, they are understandably frustrated. When a man appears on the shore asking, “Children, have ye any meat?” their response is terse. “No.” The man’s question is not unusual. Those interested in purchasing from fishermen would often call out from the shore to find out how the catch was going.

What is unusual, however, is what happened next. The man on the shore tells the disciples, “Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes.” First, it should be stated that there is nothing significant about the right side versus the left side of the ship. What is significant is the fact that the disciples found success when they did what Jesus told them to do.

This is important to them because they needed to be reminded of their need to rely on God. It is human nature to think that one is invincible following a great victory such as the one the disciples experienced with Jesus’ resurrection. But the days and months ahead would cause the disciples to look to Jesus for guidance and deliverance many times. Dr. Warren Wiersbe writes, “Had they forgotten the Lord’s words, ‘For without me, ye can do nothing’? Perhaps [in this fishing expedition], Peter’s impulsiveness and self-confidence were revealing themselves again. He was sincere, and he worked hard, but there were no results. How like some believers in the service of the Lord! They sincerely believe that they are doing God’s will, but their labors are in vain. They are serving without direction from the Lord, so they cannot expect blessing from the Lord.”

Much of what we do in life may not be working out simply because we are not following the direction of the Lord in the matter or because we are doing things that He has not commanded us to do. The test for us is whether or not we will change our tactics when we hear His voice and begin doing things according to His will. God wants to bless us. He wants to give us the abundant life. He wants our fishing nets to be overflowing. But it is up to us as to whether we will receive the blessings that He offers us. Peter and the other disciples would not have gotten a huge catch if they had not obeyed the Lord.

Daniel Whittle wrote:
There shall be showers of blessing:
This is the promise of love;
There shall be seasons refreshing,
Sent from the Savior above.

There shall be showers of blessing;
O that today they might fall,
Now as to God we’re confessing,
Now as on Jesus we call!

There shall be showers of blessing,
If we but trust and obey;
There shall be seasons refreshing,
If we let God have His way.

Get on the path to showers of blessings by receiving Jesus Christ as your Savior today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at dw3@gospellightsociety.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Jesus Comforts Troubled Hearts, Part 17 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 230)

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TEXT: John 14:22-26

22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?

23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.

25 These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you.

26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

———-

Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.

This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”

This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 230.

F.F. Bruce said, “Where love and obedience are shown, the presence of God and of Christ is realized; the Father and the Son together make their home with each of the children.”

Jesus has made it clear that the test of love is obedience. Those who love Him and obey Him are those to whom the Father and the Son will dwell with and manifest themselves. Jesus now says, “He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.” There will be those, like Judas, who claim to love Jesus, but will not obey Him. Jesus reminds us that such a person is disobeying God because His commands come from the Father.

Rodney A. Whitacre said, “In this passage, as throughout the Gospel, we have the dependency of the Son upon the Father. The Father, in love, sent the Son, and so those who receive the Son in love will receive this love of the Father. For the word that they obey in love is not the Son’s but that of the Father himself. Jesus’ word is not the word of a mere human teacher that can be debated and modified; it comes from the Father and thus is and expresses ultimate reality. Those who do not love and obey the Son reject the Father himself.”

Jesus anticipates that His disciple will not understand all that He is saying to them now. With His arrest and crucifixion looming and the disciples going into hiding for fear for their own lives, they will certainly not be able to digest Jesus’ words fully. So, Jesus returns to the subject of the Comforter, introducing him now not just as an encourager and constant companion, but as a teacher.

Verse 26 reads, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”

In the very near future, the disciples would need to be reminded of Jesus’ words. At that time, the Holy Spirit would bring those words to their remembrance and would help them understand exactly what Jesus meant. They would learn by living out their lives as believers. This is how the disciples got through all of the difficulties that they faced as they followed Jesus’ command for them to take the Gospel to the whole world. The were sustained, guided, and enlightened by the Holy Spirit. They never forgot Jesus’ words because they had the Holy Spirit to remind them.

Many who are not saved cannot understand why Jesus did what He did or said what He said. Even if someone were to explain it to them, they still would not grasp it. What that person needs is the Holy Spirit living inside of them to show them, teach them, and reveal to them the meaning of Jesus’ words in the course of everyday life. Of course, the Holy Spirit will only come to them if they first believe on Jesus Christ as Savior.

Understanding is not a prerequisite to salvation. Jesus did not hang around to make sure His disciples understood everything that He had said. He just made sure that they believed in Him and were dedicated to obeying Him. They would understand everything by and by.

We are tossed and driven
on the restless sea of time;
somber skies and howling tempests
oft succeed a bright sunshine;
in that land of perfect day,
when the mists are rolled away,
we will understand it better by and by.

Temptations, hidden snares
often take us unawares,
and our hearts are made to bleed
for a thoughtless word or deed;
and we wonder why the test
when we try to do our best,
but we’ll understand it better by and by.

By and by, when the morning comes,
when the saints of God are in the sky,
we’ll tell of how we’ve overcome,
for we’ll understand it better by and by.

You may not understand everything there is to understand about salvation now, but if you trust Christ as your Savior today, you will understand it better by and by?

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please e-mail me at dw3@gospellightsociety.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Jesus Comforts Troubled Hearts, Part 16 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 229)

spiritual-warfare


TEXT: John 14:22-24

22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?

23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.

———-

Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.

This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”

This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 229.

Philip Yancey said, “The New Testament tells us that love for God, which means acting in loving ways toward God, nurtures the relationship and leads toward growth. I do not get to know God, then do his will; I get to know him by doing his will.”

In our last message we read that for a little while the world saw Jesus, but once Jesus left the earth, only the disciples would see Jesus. Jesus had used the word “manifest” to explain how He was God showing Himself to the world. The meaning of the word “manifest” is to show forth, to make plain, or to reveal. So the disciples couldn’t understand what the deal was with Jesus saying He would from now on manifest Himself to them, but not to the world.

One of the disciples named Judas asked this question, “Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?” (This Judas was the son of Thomas, and is normally identified with the disciples named Thaddeus by Matthew and Mark.) How could Jesus show Himself just to the disciples, but not to world?

This is Jesus’ answer: “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.”

What Jesus is saying here is that He will no longer abide with people who do not love Him and who do not obey Him. They will not get to know who Jesus is. They can read about Him, they can hear about Him, they can be informed of who He says He is, but they will not know Him intimately like the disciples know Him. They will not be a part of His family, and God will not be their father.

Dr. Warren Wiersbe says that this does not mean that Jesus is changing His divine plans for the world to be saved. “Jesus had been rejected by His own people, so He could not manifest Himself to them. In fact, it was an act of mercy that He did not manifest Himself to the world, because that would have meant judgment. He has revealed Himself to His church and left the church in the world to be a witness of God’s love…. One day He will return and the world will behold Him [as the Judge of the universe].”

Another way of putting it is that Jesus has revealed Himself to His disciples and to His church. It is the responsibility of the church to reveal Him to the world — to invite people to become a part of His body.

If anybody wants to know Jesus or have Jesus’ presence manifested in their life, they must do two things: (1) They must love Him, and (2) They must obey Him. That is what Jesus means by “keeping” His words. Only then, Jesus says, “we [Him and His Father] will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” The word “abode” means a permanent residence. Imagine, God and Jesus Christ coming to live with you and in you. That is what Jesus meant when He told His disciples that they would “see” Him and that He would continue to manifest Himself to them even after He was gone. Jesus lived in them and with them and He wants to live in you and with you today as well.

Margaret E. Barber wrote:

Can you be obedient
To the Lord of all,
Though the earth should tremble,
Though the heavens should fall?
Face even a disaster
With an obedient heart,
Knowing naught can harm him
Who with Christ will start?

Are you ready to start your life with Christ today by trusting Him as your Savior? Here is how.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please e-mail me at dw3@gospellightsociety.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Do You Want to Stay Sin-Sick? Part 5 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 50)

JJMessage


TEXT: John 5:12-15

12 Then asked they him, What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk?

13 And he that was healed wist not who it was: for Jesus had conveyed himself away, a multitude being in that place.

14 Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.

15 The man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, which had made him whole.

Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations” and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.

This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”

This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 50.

Peter Kreeft said, “If your life is Christ, then your death will be only more of Christ, forever. If your life is only Christlessness, then your death will be only more Christlessness, forever. That’s not fundamentalism, that’s the law of non-contradiction.”

Although Jesus had healed the sick man, He was not through with him yet. There was still something very important that Jesus wanted to get across to him.

The healed man is confronted by the religious authorities who want to know about the man who healed him and told him to pick up his bed on the Sabbath. But the healed man realizes that he doesn’t know where Jesus went. The Bible tells us that Jesus “conveyed himself away, a multitude being in that place.” “Conveyed” has a sense of discreetly moving from one place to another. For some reason, at this particular time and location, Jesus did not want to get caught up in a healing crusade, so He left the area after healing the man.

However, Jesus feels the need to go back and seek this man out again. One commentator, W. Hall Harris III, states that the reason might be because the man seems to display a frightening level of naivety when compared with others whom Jesus healed”. Harris goes on to say “the sick man’s grumbling about the ‘whippersnappers’ who outrace him to the water betrays a chronic inability to seize opportunity, a trait reflected again in his oblique response to Jesus’ offer of a cure. The fact that he had let his benefactor slip away without even asking his name is another instance of real dullness.”

So, Jesus goes back to find this man. The Bible says, “Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.” The man was in the Temple to make an offering to God as mandated by the law of all those who were healed of a serious illness.

What did Jesus’ words to this man mean? First, as if to emphasize what has transpired, Jesus says, “Behold — take note of this — thou art made whole.” Scholars have stated that the “cures” provided by the Pool of Bethesda were often temporary. Jesus is making it plain to this man that there is no going back; he is permanently healed.

Next, Jesus says, “sin no more.” Many believe that this indicates that the man’s sickness was brought upon by some sin in his past. However, we do not know that for sure. What we do know is that sin does have a negative effect on our bodies. We would do well to take heed to Paul’s words in Galatians 6, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption…” In other words, if you do deeds that please only your flesh, you will suffer the consequences [corruption] in your flesh.

Ray Stedman points out that the order in which Jesus says these words is also important. He did not tell the man to “sin no more” first, and then say, “Behold, thou art healed.” He said, “Behold, thou art healed” first, and then He said, “sin no more.” You see, we do not stop sinning in order to be saved; we stop sinning because we are saved. Jesus told this man, ‘Look, I have healed you and made you whole. Now, go and honor what I have done in your life by living righteously before God. Don’t sin anymore.’

Jesus ends with a warning: “Sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.” It appears as though Jesus is telling this man in no uncertain terms that if he goes out and sins with his new body, something worse than the disease he suffered for 38 years will come upon him. You say, ‘That sounds harsh.’ Actually, it is very reasonable. Jesus expects this man to live better now that he is healed. Whatever he did in the past that could have put him in his terrible situation is to be rejected. He knows better, so he should do better. He can do better because Jesus touched his life, healed him, transformed him, and made him whole. The worse thing here could also refer to Hell.

Jesus wants to touch your life today if you will let Him. He wants you to be able to go forth with your life and sin no more. So, He asks the same question of you that he asked of this man when he was sick. “Wilt thou be made whole?” I hope your answer is, “Yes.” You say preacher I am sin sick, how can I be made whole? I am glad you asked. Here is how

First, acknowledge that you are sin-sick and that you need a Saviour, for the Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him.

The Bible also says in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved…. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and I want to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please e-mail me at dw3@gospellightsociety.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Do You Want to Stay Sin-Sick? Part 4 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 49)

JJMessage


TEXT: John 5:8-13

8 Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.

9 And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the sabbath.

10 The Jews therefore said unto him that was cured, It is the sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed.

11 He answered them, He that made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed, and walk.

12 Then asked they him, What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk?

13 And he that was healed wist not who it was: for Jesus had conveyed himself away, a multitude being in that place.

———-

Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents and politicians but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey God’s Great Commission and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.

This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”

This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As the hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 49.

Max Lucado said, “Let God have you, and let God love you – and don’t be surprised if your heart begins to hear music you’ve never heard and your feet learn to dance as never before.”

Immediately after the sick man is healed, he gets into trouble with “the Jews.” Generally speaking, in John’s Gospel, the writer uses the term “the Jews” to indicate the religious leaders, not the entire Jewish population. This man who has lain sick for 38 years has picked up his bed and is joyfully walking away from the Pool of Bethesda, leaving all of the sickness and suffering that he had endured behind.

He hasn’t gone too far when he is stopped by some of the religious leaders who would have been out in full force due to the religious celebration that is going on in Jerusalem. The Bible tells us that they “said unto him that was cured, It is the sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed.” In their minds, the religious leaders had a legitimate concern. The Law strictly prohibited work on the Sabbath. Rabbis had carefully detailed 39 ways in which a man could break the Sabbath day law — and carrying one’s bed (or anything at all) was one of them.

The healed man responds, “He that made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed, and walk.” This man knew that Jesus had to be a man of God to have worked such a miracle of healing. So, you can imagine how perplexed he was. ‘One man of God healed me and told me to pick up my bed. Yet, these men of God are telling me that I am committing a crime by carrying my bed.’

Notice how the religious leaders respond: “What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk?” They don’t ask, ‘Who is the man that healed you? Who is the man that worked this miracle?’ They totally overlook the miracle that had taken place right under their noses. While it sounds ridiculous to our minds, they are perfectly serious. They have tunnel vision on the fact that one of their miniscule laws is being broken.

This spirit of legalism exists even today in modern Israel. In some hotels and apartment buildings, there are Sabbath elevators for Orthodox Jews. These Jews believe that pressing a button in an elevator on the Sabbath constitutes work, so, on every floor, the elevator stops and the door opens to give people a chance to get on and get off without doing any work. Not too long ago, three residences in an Orthodox neighborhood burned to the ground because the neighbors went to ask a rabbi whether a telephone call to the fire department on the Sabbath would violate the Law.

This spirit can be found not only in modern Judaism, but in the Christian church today. Many unbelievers, and perhaps some of you listening, have been turned off to faith in Christ because of how some of God’s people focus on strict adherence to laws, some of which are not even in the Bible. You might have heard that in order to be a Christian you can’t watch TV, or you can’t go to the movies, or you can’t drink wine. Please understand that God is first and foremost concerned about your soul.

When Jesus healed the lame man at the Pool of Bethesda, He didn’t interrogate him about his past life first. He didn’t ask him what he had done to get in the situation he was in. Jesus was concerned about delivering the man from his predicament. And that is what He did. If you recall from John chapter 3, Jesus gave the Samaritan woman living water even though it was clear she was still living in sin.

If you are drowning in the ocean, and a lifeguard comes to rescue you, he is not going to ask, ‘Why did you ignore the warnings about the rough seas and high winds today?’ No, he is going to save you first. If you have a heart attack and go to the emergency room, the doctor is not going to say, ‘Why did you eat all that greasy food? Didn’t you know it was going to clog your arteries?’ No, he is going to save you life first, and then help you live better.

That is what Jesus does when He meets a sinner. His main goal is to save you, to snatch you from the hand of Satan as you dangle over Hell. I urge you to lay aside your worries and concerns about the life you are living right now. Your life might be messed up worse than the Samaritan woman or the sick man or even Nicodemus’ who was lost in religion. Jesus wants to save you no matter what you have done in the past and no matter how you are living now. No one else will receive you in your present circumstances like Jesus will. I urge you to accept His gift of salvation today. Here is how.

First, acknowledge that you are sin-sick and that you need a Saviour, for the Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him.

The Bible also says in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved…. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and I want to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please e-mail me at dw3@gospellightsociety.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Fighting the Pull of Darkness, Part 5 (Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible #61)

Pilgrim's Progress
Pilgrim’s Progress

TEXT: Ephesians 5:11-16

11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.

13 But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.

14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.

15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

——- PRAYER ——-

Fighting the Pull of Darkness, Part 5 (Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible #61)

As we wrap up our focus on fighting the pull of darkness, we are going to look at what God wants us to do as it relates to the world. We have already seen how we, as Christians, ought not to be engaged in the deeds of darkness. And, we have also seen how we are commanded to reach out and lovingly rebuke our brothers and sisters in Christ who are engaged in such deeds.

However, we also bear an obligation to the world that lies in the lap of Satan. Look at verse 14: “Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.” The “he” speaking in this verse is God. Scholars believe that the words quoted here are either based on a verse in Isaiah or from an early Christian hymn, as it is not found elsewhere in the Bible. Joseph Exell and Donald Spence state in their commentary, “The fundamental idea is that when the Church gets the light of heaven, she is not to lie still, as if she were asleep or dead, but is to be active, is to make use of the light, is to use it for illuminating the world. The apostle maintains that the Ephesian Church had got the light of heaven; she, therefore, was not to sleep or loiter, but spring forth as if from the grave, and pour light on the world.”

That is what God calls the church to do. The church on earth is the light of God in a dark world. We who have been delivered from the darkness ought to let our lights shine so that others may come to Jesus and be delivered from the darkness of their sin. Doing this places us on the frontlines of the war against Satan. He tries to keep people enslaved, but we unite with Christ in order that many may find freedom in Him.

Some Christians look at the world today and believe it is time for the church to close ranks, to withdraw into its ivory towers, and leave the unsaved to the devil’s devices. In the past few years some have begun to talk about losing the so-called “culture wars.” However, retreating in the face of darkness is not an option for the church of Christ. That strategy is not in God’s playbook. As Russell Moore stated in his new book, Onward, the perceived loss of ‘Christian America’ is not a “tragedy”; rather, it is an opportunity for the church “to speak of sin and of righteousness and judgment, of Christ and his kingdom… Our end goal is not Christian America, but the kingdom of Christ, made up of every tribe, tongue, nation, and language.” Certainly, we will face setbacks and disappointments, but the battlecry of the church ought always to be, “onward, Christian soldiers!” We are obligated to keep moving forward.

Part of our shining a light involves our day-to-day lifestyle. Verse 15 says, “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise…” Walking circumspectly means “living carefully.” We ought to be diligent and attentive to the way we live our lives. We ought not to be people who live for the thrills of life or to just go with the flow. Often, going with the flow involves getting into foolishness; and we are commanded to live wisely in this wicked world. Matthew Henry said, “Another remedy against sin is care or caution; it is otherwise impossible to maintain purity of heart and life.”

Part of living wisely in the world involves using our time wisely. Verse 16 says, “Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” This verse carries with it the idea of a businessman seizing upon a good opportunity to turn a profit. Strong’s Lexicon provides this definition: “To make wise and sacred use of every opportunity for doing good, so that zeal and well-doing are as it were the purchase money by which we make the time our own.”

The word translated “time” literally means a “fixed and definite time” or an “opportunity.” Every day, we are given specific opportunities to do good, to preach Christ, and to shine a light in the world. Every day, we are called to do as Christ did — to share the message of the Kingdom, to provide for the poor, to preach deliverance to captives and freedom to those who are enslaved. Let us awaken from our slumber and reignite our light. The days we live in are evil, but they are full of opportunities to do good.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to share with you briefly how you can be saved from your sins and be guaranteed a home in Heaven with God today.

First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” Please understand that because of your sins, you deserve eternal punishment in hell. Romans 6:23 says “the wages of sin is death…This is both physical death and spiritual death in hell. That is the bad news.

But here is the good news. John 3:16 says “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door.” Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Fighting the Pull of Darkness, Part 4 (Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible #60)

Pilgrim's Progress
Pilgrim’s Progress

TEXT: Ephesians 5:11-16

11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.

13 But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.

14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.

15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Fighting the Pull of Darkness, Part 4 (Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible #60)

In this part of our series, we have considered the works of the children of darkness (or the “children of disobedience”) as well as the reasons why we, the children of light, ought not to be engaged in them. However, we cannot put our heads in the sand (or in the clouds) and simply ignore the darkness that is in the world. It is all around us. It tugs at our hearts and our flesh. The darkness of sin tempt us and try to lure us away from the light. Our children are affected by it. Our spouses are affected by it. Our brothers and sisters in Christ are affected by it. And, of course, the world is enthralled by it.

What do we do? Christ has called us not to just condemn the darkness, but to shine a light in it. As we touched on last week, this process of shining a light should start in the church. We are to reprove (or rebuke) those who claim to be followers of Christ yet are walking in darkness. This should not be done in a spirit of pharisaism or being ‘holier-than-thou.’ Rather, it is simply the nature of light to expose darkness. The two cannot co-exist. John states, “The light shineth in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” Where there is light, the darkness will be banished. When darkness and light meet, there will be conflict.

Our text states, “all things that are reproved [rebuked] are made manifest [exposed] by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest [expose] is light.” If we are walking in the light, we will be irritated by the darkness around us. We will not like it if others in our family, in our church, or in our workplace are engaging in sin. We will be compelled to help them see the error of their ways. That is our obligation to others in the body of Christ.

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If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to share with you briefly how you can be saved from your sins and be guaranteed a home in Heaven with God today.

First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” Please understand that because of your sins, you deserve eternal punishment in hell. Romans 6:23 says “the wages of sin is death…This is both physical death and spiritual death in hell. That is the bad news.

But here is the good news. John 3:16 says “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door.” Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Fighting the Pull of Darkness, Part 3 (Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible #59)

Pilgrim's Progress
Pilgrim’s Progress

TEXT: Ephesians 5:8-12

8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.

Fighting the Pull of Darkness, Part 3 (Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible #59)

Over the past week, much of the talk on the news has centered around the terrorist attack in Paris by an extremist group that calls itself the Islamic State. One of the critical issues that has been discussed is how young men and young women who were raised in modern, democratic countries, taught in public, secular schools, and surrounded by 21st century materialism and culture, can be “radicalized” and drawn into a barbaric, bloodthirsty, murderous organization that has done nothing but spread death and destruction since it emerged on the world scene over a year ago. The FBI has even arrested young people in the United States who were attempting to join or support this organization. Continue reading “Fighting the Pull of Darkness, Part 3 (Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible #59)”