Saturday, December 3, 2011

Certain Faith

"Zacharias said to the angel, “How will I know this for certain? For I am an old man and my wife is advanced in years.”
Luke 1:18

The angel Gabriel, bearing good news, showed up at the altar while Zacharias performed his priestly duties. I'm guessing that Zacharias knew that God had opened Sara's womb to conceive Isaac in her old age. So isn't it interesting that Zacharias would doubt Gabriel's pronouncement that Elizabeth in her advanced years would conceive John? Zacharias wanted to know how he could be certain this wonderful thing would happen, and Gabriel responded by telling him that because he doubted Zacharias would be mute until John's birth. And so he was. It's easy to judge Zacharias for his unbelief, but don't we often do the same thing when we doubt God's promises? We know how faithful He has been in the past, yet our circumstances seem so impossible that we can't bring ourselves to trust Him to do what He says He will do. At such times we need to spend time recounting God's past faithfulness, then ask Him to give us certain faith as we wait on Him.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Advent Reflection

A voice is calling, “Clear the way for the LORD in the wilderness; Make smooth in the desert a highway for our God." 
Isaiah 40:3

Seven centuries before John the Baptist's (baptist meaning "an immerser") birth, Isaiah prophesied that John would come to prepare the people to receive Jesus Christ the Messiah. John preached a message of repentance, of turning away from sin and turning to God. As we enter this Advent season, we have a wonderful opportunity to reflect on the condition of our  hearts and repent of anything that stands between us and the Lord. "Examine me, O LORD, and try me; Test my mind and my heart." (Psalm 26:2) Let's clear the way for the Lord to do a great work in us this Christmas.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Deity of Christ

"For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form,"
Colossians 2:9

The meaning of this verse is so clear. Jesus Christ is God incarnate. If we don't believe this, then we have rejected Christ as Savior. "The doctrine of the nature of Christ has been widely debated throughout the course of Christian history. Some deny the deity (or God nature) of Christ. They teach that He was ONLY a man. They feel that to assert that the Father is God, the Son is God and the Holy Spirit is God is to claim that there are three Gods, not one. The Bible doesn't seek to explain this mind-boggling concept of the Trinity (that three persons are one in essence). It asserts that "the Lord our God, the Lord is one." And it tells us that "Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God." (Jn. 20:31). Jesus Himself told us, "I and the Father are one." -- Rev. Bruce Goettsche. God demanded a perfect sacrifice for sin and only the second person of the Trinity Jesus Christ could fulfill that requirement. If we deny Christ, thinking we can reach God by being a good person, a moral person, then we have made a grave mistake. For God has said that there is no one who is righteous and all that we think of as righteousness is filthy rags to Him (Isaiah 64:6).

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

God's Indescribable Gift

"Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!"
2 Corinthians 9:15

Most theologians agree that the "indescribable gift" Paul speaks of in this verse is Christ Jesus. Whatever gift God might give, surely there is none that can compare to the gift of His Son for our redemption. How can words describe such generosity from our God? “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." (John 3:16) This is what separates Christianity from every other major belief system. It is not what we must do to reach God, it is what He has already done to reach us. It is finished. Christ paid the price. He is risen. Our salvation rests in Him. "Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!"

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Our Magnificent God

“Have you entered the storehouses of the snow" Job 38:22

I believe our God has the heart of a poet. The Lord's words to Job regarding His power are filled with wonderful descriptions. 
“Has the rain a father? Or who has begotten the drops of dew? 
From whose womb has come the ice? And the frost of heaven, who has given it birth? 
Water becomes hard like stone, And the surface of the deep is imprisoned."
There is so much to learn about our Father. So much we can know and appreciate. Why do we settle for a measly surface knowledge of such a magnificent God, when we can have the thrill of experiencing so much more of Him? 

Monday, November 28, 2011

Brighter and Brighter

"But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, That shines brighter and brighter until the full day."
Proverbs 4:18

When God's light shines into our lives, a great transformation begins. The brightness of His truth diispels the darkness of sin in our hearts and we become more and more like Him. This is an ongoing work that will not be completed until we are finally with Him. "He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus." (Philippians 1:6)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Be an Example

"If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men."
Romans 12:18

God's children are to set the example for living peacefully with their neighbors. Unbelievers often judge Christ's gospel by how His followers treat others. When we extend kindness and respect to them, even when they don't return the favor, we show that we are followers of Christ and God is glorified. 
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