Bible Ballistics: Vol. 13 No. 16 Live, Breathe, Be???
I have friends, and you probably do too, who have chronic illnesses, in fact I have several friends who have not only chronic illnesses, but genetically based diseases. That would be a hard thing to deal with, knowing that you could pass on a disease to your children and/or grandchildren, especially since it is out of my/your control.; but there’s something else that we need to consider, for it is even more far-reaching than a chronic disease, and if not treated appropriately, it is truly fatal. That is “SIN”, and while we all pass it on to our children and our grandchildren, there is something that we can do—something that IS within our control! And that something is JESUS! While we may not have a choice about the genetic pool that is passed on to us, we do have a choice about our response to sin, and the choice that we make will affect those around us whether we are related or not!
Scripture clearly tells us that we are all afflicted with the disease of sin!
“As it is written,
There is none righteous,
not one:” Romans 3:10
That means that sin is the issue—we all have it, but only Jesus can provide the cure (so to speak)!
“For all have sinned,
and come short of the glory of God;” Romans 3:23
All–that means me; and that means you! Every human being is born into sin (except the God-Man Savior, Jesus), and we can choose to respond to the gospel of Jesus, hear the convicting voice of the Holy Spirit, repent and receive the saving grace that He died to provide; or you can choose to pay for you own sin!
“For the wages of sin is death;
but the gift of God
is eternal life
through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23
We are all born in sin, but when we come to Jesus in repentance and faith, we don’t have to die in our sin. Jesus has already done that for us; therefore, Hell doesn’t have to be our future. We can have life now and forever—abundant life IN Jesus!
“Then said Jesus unto them again,
Verily, verily, I say unto you,
I am the door of the sheep.
8 All that ever came before me
but the sheep did not hear them.
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.
10 The thief cometh not,
but for to steal,
and to kill,
and to destroy:
I am come
that they might have life,
and that they might have it
11 I am the good shepherd:
the good shepherd giveth his life
for the sheep.” John 10:7-11
Jesus IS the good shepherd, for HE gave His life for our salvation, all because God loved us.
“We love him, because he first loved us.” 1 John 4:19
What a wonderful verse! Salvation was, is and ever shall be God’s idea, God pursued us, for salvation is always initiated by God—it’s not our idea! We can only respond to HIS grace which has been extended to us as His Spirit reveals Him to us. Have you heard His voice? His knock at your heart’s door?
I stand at the door,
if any man hear my voice,
and open the door,
I will come in to him,
and will sup with him,
and he with me.” Revelation 3:20
And to be the Redeemer, Jesus gave His own life, of His own will to save us! God sent Jesus to pay for ‘my’ sin and ‘yours’!
“Ye men of Israel, hear these words;
Jesus of Nazareth,
a man approved of God
among you by miracles
which God did by him
in the midst of you,
as ye yourselves also know:
23 Him, being delivered
by the determinate counsel
ye have taken,
and by wicked hands
24 Whom God hath raised up,
having loosed the pains of death:
because it was not possible
that he should be holden of it.” Acts 2:22-24
Not only preached by Peter and the apostles, but also foretold by Jesus Himself.
“And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold:
them also I must bring,
and they shall hear my voice;
and there shall be one fold,
and one shepherd.
17 Therefore doth my Father love me,
because I lay down my life,
that I might take it again.
18 No man taketh it from me,
but I lay it down of myself.
I have power to lay it down,
and I have power to take it again.
This commandment have I received
of my Father.” John 10:16-18
Jesus came out of love for us and obediently lay down HIS life for me and you! Praise God for His amazing grace that saves and keeps those who will come to HIM! Oh, to have the words to describe the wondrous grace that He has bestowed on me/us, and to express the gratitude that fills my heart. And because of that gratitude and recognition of the blessings of God, we ought to behave in accord with what we have received. I truly believe that one of the problems we face today is an overabundance of people who profess what they don’t possess! But God knows those who are HIS, and Jesus made it clear that what’s in our hearts will come out—one way or another; sooner or later!
“Nevertheless the foundation of God
having this seal,
The Lord knoweth them that are his.
And, Let every one
that nameth the name of Christ
depart from iniquity.” 2 Timothy 2:19
We can find victory in living when we learn to depend on the direction, provision and instruction of God’s Word and His Holy Spirit.
“16 This I say then,
Walk in the Spirit,
and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh…..
24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh
with the affections and lusts.
25 If we live in the Spirit,
let us also walk in the Spirit.” Galatians 5:16 & 24-25
How much we miss when we forget that when we belong to Jesus, He provides all we need for faithful, godly living.
“Grace and peace be multiplied unto you
through the knowledge of God,
and of Jesus our Lord,
3 According as his divine power
hath given unto us
all things that pertain
unto life and godliness,
through the knowledge of him
that hath called us to glory
4 Whereby are given unto us
and precious promises:
that by these
ye might be partakers
of the divine nature,
having escaped the corruption
that is in the world through lust.” 2 Peter 1:3
Power to overcome is found in The Spirit and The Word of Him who laid down His life for me and you! We can live and prevail by His grace, as we die to self and live “in Jesus”!
“For in him
and have our being;
as certain also of your own poets have said,
For we are also his offspring.” Acts 17:28
“I am crucified with Christ:
nevertheless I live;
yet not I,
but Christ liveth in me:
and the life which I now live in the flesh
I live by the faith
of the Son of God,
who loved me,
and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
All because Jesus holds it all together—right now, and always.
“Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person,
and upholding all things
by the word of his power,
when he had by himself purged our sins,
sat down on the right hand
of the Majesty on high;” Hebrews 1:3
So, a few questions, “In “whom” (or how) do you ‘live, and move, and have your being”? Have you died to self at the cross, to live by “faith of the Son of God”? The choice is yours but choose wisely; there is a test at the end!
One last word to challenge our minds!
“And be not drunk
with wine, wherein is excess;
but be filled
with the Spirit;
19 Speaking to yourselves
and spiritual songs,
singing and making melody
in your heart to the Lord;
20 Giving thanks always
for all things
unto God and the Father
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
21 Submitting yourselves
one to another
in the fear of God.” Ephesians 5:18-21
Are you “filled with the Spirit” (which means to be pervaded, controlled by) or is something else ‘controlling’ you? (It matters not if it’s drugs, liquor, sex, greed, lying and deceit, power, manipulation, ego, sloth, or ambition). What are you filling your life with!