Bible Ballistics: BBs #235 My New Year’s Prayer!!!
As we start this new year of 2016, I prayer for all those around me, for the world at large and especially for America, which is in great need of prayer. But I pray today especially for those special people in my life (and yours) who are walking in blatant disobedience to what they know to be the truth, and for those who know the truth but have rejected, dismissed or minimalized the seriousness of the Word of God and the truth of the imminent return of Jesus Christ The Lord. My heart is burdened that so many in my life (and I’m sure yours as well) claim the name of Jesus, use cutesy “religious jingles” and “pictures” on social media but have no desire to walk with God or live a lifestyle of “holiness” and Biblical integrity, the can post nice “religious” sayings one minute and curse like the devil in the next. Something is wrong with this picture!
My heart breaks for the reality that many of them, many of you, may be living in deception. So my prayer today is that God will open our eyes, that we will each open ourselves before God and let Him reveal truth to our hearts:
“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:” Psalm 139:23
“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” 2 Corinthians 13:5
And what does it mean to be “in the faith”? It starts with the basics that Jesus declared to Nicodemus!
“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God……….. 5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” John 3:3 & 5
We must be “born again” by God’s Spirit, and that is a life-changing transformation that only God can perform in the hearts of men, women, boys and girls. A work that comes when we repent of our sin, and trust in the work that Jesus did for us on Calvary—knowing that He paid for our sin—His death for my life.
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Romans 3:23
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” John 1:12-13
Being “in the faith” means I have be born “of God”! We all share in the flesh and blood that gave life at our birth, but we must choose to receive the new life that being “born again” imparts– to those who will believe in HIM!
Not just giving “mental assent” to His existence—
Not just walking an aisle
or repeating some “magic formula” prayer—
Not just “speaking” the name of Jesus
and “saying” we believe!
Being born again means I have placed all I am at the feet of Jesus; that I have come to the end of myself and heard the voice of Jesus’ Spirit speaking to me the life bringing truth that I am lost without HIM; it means that I have come to understand the futility and emptiness that exists within me apart from Jesus (regardless of the religious activity that may appear in my life); real faith means I have seen the truth of my failure—my sin—and come to the only ONE who can give me life and peace with GOD and peace from GOD!
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
And I can be a “new creature” only by faith in Jesus death for MY sin, in turning from my own way to HIM and His way.
“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” Isaiah 53:6
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:8-10
And because of God’s precious grace we can be “saved” from our sins, given new life and walk in “good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them”. Not works that save, but salvation that produces good works, because I have peace with God, as well as the peace of God.
“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: 2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” Romans 5:1-2
So, what am I saying? I am simply saying what Jesus said in Matthew 7, “saying so, doesn’t make it so”!!! It’s not what I say, it’s what I possess from God through Jesus Christ, and if I truly belong to Jesus there will be evidence in my life, to one degree or another. If I really belong to Jesus, I can’t walk in disobedience continually without the discipline of God!
“A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. 19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. 20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. 21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” Matthew 7:18-23
“For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. 7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? 8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.” Hebrews 12:6-8 Are you “real”? Or “illegitimate”/imitation?
If you are living a godless life, but clinging to a past “profession”, “prayer”, “baptism”, “confirmation” or any other “religious” activity to get you to heaven, please, please, please ask God to reveal your heart to you. If you are ignoring God with no thought about it, you should examine what you think “saved” you! Please seek the face of Jesus and His power today, for it is of eternal importance; your eternity depends on it. God knows the truth, no matter what anyone else thinks. Just because your ‘daddy’, or ‘grandma’, or ‘wife’, or ‘husband’ or even your ‘children’ think you are a “good person”, if you don’t really belong to Jesus, you have no hope.
And if you are claiming the name of Jesus and living in open, blatant, unbiblical ways of sin I beg of you to ‘examine’ your heart and ask God to show you your real condition before HIM?
“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 “were” NOT “are”
I didn’t say it, GOD did! So my prayer is that YOU will take time today and in this coming year to truly come to know God through His Son Jesus, if you don’t. And if you already belong to Jesus, remember that other’s eternity may depend on your example and testimony. Our Lord is coming soon.
“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. 5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? 6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:1-6
Jesus is still the only way!!! And He knows not only your “lifestyle” but also your “heart”—just because others don’t see the evil within you, doesn’t mean Jesus can’t! He knew my evil heart and came to confront my sin, and save me and deliver me from my own sin. He will do the same for you today. I pray that you will call on Him while there is still time. Amen and Amen