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The Filling of the Spirit (The Spirit Controlling Our Lives)

SIH STSTA ICON(Due to the length of this blog entry, I have chosen to abbreviate the Scripture texts… please have an open Bible at hand as we study this important subject.)

One of the most talked about subjects among Christians is the doctrine of “Spirit filling” and the results of this filling in the lives of Christians.   The only way for us to come to a sound understanding of this doctrine is to examine the many examples of Spirit filling that are found in both the Old and New Testament scriptures:

THE SCRIPTURES:

Exod 28:1-4 (KJV)

…And thou shalt speak unto all [that are] wise hearted, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom, that they may make Aaron’s garments to consecrate him, …

Exod 31:1-5 (KJV)

….Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah:And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship,…

Exod 35:30-35 (KJV)

… Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah;And he hath filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship;…

Deut 34:9-12 (KJV)

And Joshua the son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom;…

Luke 1:13-16 (KJV)

…and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb.And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God.

Luke 1:39-42 (KJV)

… and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost:And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed [art] thou among women, and blessed [is] the fruit of thy womb.

Luke 1:67-70 (KJV)

And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied,…

Luke 4:1-2 (KJV)

And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan,…

Acts 2:1-4 (KJV)

…And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Acts 4:5-14 (KJV)

…Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, …

Acts 4:27-31 (KJV)

…and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

Acts 6:3-5 (KJV)

Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom,…

Acts 7:54-60 (KJV)

…But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, …

Acts 9:10-19 (KJV)

…that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost…

Acts 11:22-26 (KJV)

….For he was a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith: and much people was added unto the Lord…

Acts 13:8-11 (KJV)

…Then Saul, (who also [is called] Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him,And said,…

Acts 13:50-52 (KJV)

…And the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.

THE STUDY:

  1. The OT references to “Spirit filling”
    1. Exo 28:3, 31:3, 35:31–     In each of these cases, the Spirit filled men which gave them the wisdom and ability to construct the furniture and garments related to the tabernacle and the worship services.
      1. Exo 28:3 – Being “wise-hearted” was the result of Spirit filling

ii. Exo 31:1-3, 35:31 – The God’s sovereign call of Bezaleel brought about the Spirit filling which gave him the wisdom understanding and knowledge to perform all manner of workmanship.

  1. Deut 34:9–     The filling of Joshua took place when Moses laid hands on him.   Laying on of hands was the public declaration of God’s choice of Joshua was the successor to Moses.
    1. This filling then enabled Joshua to lead the children of Israel in the promised land.

The NT references to “Spirit filling”

    1. Luke 1:15–     Here we find John the Baptist, filled while in his mothers womb. John the Baptist as the forerunner of Christ was to announce Christ’s coming to the world.  This event was the first time he announced Christ’s coming.
      1. This filling enabled John to recognize, and react to, the Messiah who was still in the womb of Mary.
    2. Luke 1:41-67–     In these verses, we read of John’s parents Elizabeth and Zacharias blessed Mary and the Messiah who was in her womb.
      1. The Spirit filling allowed both Elizabeth and Zacharias to recognize the Messiah in Mary’s womb and also enabled them to make their proclamations of blessings upon Mary and the Christ.
    3. Luke 4:1–     Following Christ’s baptism, we find Him described as being filled with the Spirit.  Perhaps this Spirit filling took place from His conception, or perhaps from His baptism.  In either case, we find Him filled before His encounter with Satan in the wilderness.
      1. Probably, Christ was filled with the Spirit to enable Him to perform all His wondrous acts during His earthly ministry.  However, in the context, we can see, for certain, that one reason for His filling was to empower Him during the temptation that was about to take place.
    4. Acts 2:4 –     The Holy Spirit sovereignty filled the believing church members of the church at Jerusalem.  This took place during the Day of Pentecost
      1. This filling enabled the church members to speak in known human languages that were unknown to the speakers (but known to the hearers).  This allowed the Christians to proclaim the wondrous works of the Lord to foreigners who did not speak the Greek language.
    5. Acts 4:8 -     Peter and John were filled with the Spirit during their examination at the hands of Jewish religious leaders.
      1. This filling allowed them to answer with boldness and clarity as they were being questioned.
    6. Acts 4:31–     The believers, assembled to hear John and Peter speak were filled with the Holy Ghost as they were listening to the account of John and Peter.
      1. The believers were enabled to speak the word of God with boldness in the face of threatened persecution.
    7. Acts 6:3-5–     Here we read the Godly men of Jerusalem, who were soon to become the first deacons of the church at Jerusalem, were filled with the Spirit
      1. This filling gave these Godly men the ability to fulfill the office of deacon.
    8. Acts 7:55–     Stephen was filled with the Spirit immediately before he was martyred for the cause of Christ.
      1. This filling gave Stephen the ability to continue to proclaim the truth of God even in the face of death by stoning. Also, the filling allowed him to look into heaven and see the Lord.
    9. Acts 9:17–     Saul (Paul) was filled with the Holy Ghost immediately following Ananias hands being laid upon Him. This marked the beginning of Paul’s earthly ministry
      1. This filling resulted in Paul receiving his sight, gaining strength and then beginning his public ministry for the Lord.
    10. Acts 11:22-26–     Here Barnabus is described as being “a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith”.
      1. This filling allowed Barnabus to preach Godly messages empowered by the Spirit resulting in many souls being saved.
    11. Acts 13:8-11–     Here Paul, as he faces Elymas the sorcerer, is said to be filled with the Spirit.
      1. This filling of the Spirit resulted in Paul’s being able to stand up against the demoniac sorcerer and strike him blind.
    12. Acts 13:52–     Paul and Barnabus, following being cast out of Antioch, is filled with the Sprit and joy before beginning to minster in Iconium.
      1. This filling allowed Paul and Barnabus ot remain encouraged in the Lord and to minister to those at Iconium resulting in “a great multitude both of the Jews and also of the Greeks believed”

Please notice, in all the above examples the filling of the Holy Spirit was given to fulfill a specific ministry or calling.  Although forgiven of our sins, we, as Christians, are still sinful, fallen human beings, constantly hindered from faithful service by our sinful flesh.  The filling of the Spirit is one way that God enables us to serve Him in extraordinary capacities.

Also notice that the speaking of tongues only took place in one instance out of seventeen instances of Spirit filling.  There is no reason to believe that the speaking of tongues automatically accompanies the filling of the Spirit…. it is clear that, normally, tongues not did accompany Spirit filling in Bible times.

THE PRACTICAL APPLICATION

Eph 5:1-20 (KJV)

Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.Be not ye therefore partakers with them.For ye were sometimes darkness, but now [are ye] light in the Lord: walk as children of light:(For the fruit of the Spirit [is] in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove [them].For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord [is].And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;

In this passage of Scripture, Paul gives us instructions on the necessity of living a Godly life in the midst of this sinful world.  Loving with a self-sacrificial love, separation from the sin and the sinful influences of this world, living a life of wisdom, understanding and fulfilling the will of God in our lives; these all are themes touched upon by Paul.

Then Paul makes the statement “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit”.

The need for the Spirit’s filling in every Christian’s life is clearly linked to living a life that rises above the sinful influences of this world.   As a part of fallen mankind, we all have a bent toward sin.  Without the Holy Spirit filling our life and controlling it we are destined for spiritual failure in our day to day walk with Him.

Also, please note that Paul, in a sense, relates “Spirit filling” with “being drunk with wine”.  Why?  Drunkenness controls every aspect of a person’s demeanor… It affects speech, movement, judgement… the list goes on and on.   This is very similar to the Spirit filling a person’s life.  It is then that the Spirit is in control of our entire being.  Our thoughts, emotions, words, and actions are all under submission to His will and ways.

What are some results of this Spirit filling? A joyous, contented., thankful heart set on glorifying the Lord … “ Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ”

How is a Christian filled with the Spirit?  By, willfully, turning over every aspect of our lives to the rule and reign of Jesus Christ.  That is when the indwelling Spirit will take control of our entire being and work in us bringing about success in our individual ministries the Lord has chosen for us.

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To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at  http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

If you have any questions concerning this blog, or if you have a subject you would like discussed, please feel free to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.    I will answer all emails via my blog, email, or both.

Take A Look At My Wife’s Artistic/Scriptural Devotion Blog http://alivewithchristart.blogspot.com

Follow my Squidoo Instructional Lens “Presenting God’s Grace” “The Solemn Obligation To Present the Doctrines of Grace to the Lost and Saved Alike” http://www.squidoo.com/presenting-gods-grace

May the Lord bless your study of His Word.  Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”

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Is There Life After Death?

SIH STSTA ICONThroughout history the subject of life after death has a much debated subject.  It is no different in today’s time.  Views on the existence of life after death vary, based upon the belief set held by the individual.  Some of the most common views include:

  1. Denial – the belief that all aspects of life ceases at physical death.
  2. Reincarnation – is the belief that a soul is reborn in a new body.
  3. Spiritism – in many of its forms, believes that the soul of the dead remain upon the earth in the form of ghosts (or spirits)
  4. Eternalists – teachings include the belief that the souls of the dead continue to exist being separated from this temporal world, and entering into eternal, spiritual habitations.

What we believe about life after death is of extreme significance; what we believe about life after death will dictate how we look at the role of our life on earth:

  1. If no afterlife exists, then there is no reason to prepare for an afterlife. This view centers on experiencing all that this world offers to please our flesh.  We can basically, eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die.
  2. If there is reincarnation, then our works and our lessons learned in this life are central to our future state of our soul.  This centers us on our outward works and gaining lessons through experience.  It implies that our eternal state is dependent upon our works.
  3. If Spiritists are correct, after death, our relationships with those on earth are not severed, the dead can still communicate, and be present, with those living on earth.  There is very little use to prepare for the afterlife; in many ways, life continues on as it was, only in a spirit form rather than a corporeal body. 
  4. If the Eternalist view of the afterlife is correct, the need to prepare while on earth is of utmost importance.   There are no second chances, the importance of the material world is minimized when compared to the spiritual world to come. 

We are going to find out what the Bible says about life after death and how this belief set and the affect it had on Job’s life…

THE SCRIPTURE:

Job 19:23-27 (KJV)

23) Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book!

24) That they were graven with an iron pen and lead in the rock for ever!

25) For I know [that] my redeemer liveth, and [that] he shall stand at the latter [day] upon the earth:

26) And [though] after my skin [worms] destroy this [body], yet in my flesh shall I see God:

27) Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; [though] my reins be consumed within me.

THE STUDY:

Job, at this point in his life, was facing many difficult trials, brought about by Satan, but allowed by God. (Job 1:6-12, Job 2:1-6)

Some of the trials Job was facing included:

  1. Loss of possessions and livelihood (Job 1:13-17)
  2. Loss of children (Job 1:18-19)
  3. Loss of health (Job 2:7-8)
  4. Loss of Wife’s support (Job 2:9-10)
  5. Loss of Friends support (judgmental, prideful) (Job 4:-on)

Basically, Job was alone, poverty, stricken, sick, and mourning… yet what was his response?…

Job 19:

23) Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book!

24) That they were graven with an iron pen and lead in the rock for ever!

Job knew his mind wouldn’t change, what he was about to say was the foundation of his life and belief system.  

Also, he knew these words could be of help to many others following in his footsteps of a tried, tested life.  These words should be kept throughout the ages.

25) For I know

Job didn’t “think” or “hope” or “was pretty sure”… he “KNEW”  - in other words, he was certain of this set of 5 truths:

[that] my redeemer

1st Truth – Job knew that he had been purchased out of the bondage of sin.

liveth,

2nd Truth – Job knew his Redeemer could help him now.  He was living, He not only had worked on his behalf in the past, but he could help him now through the trials he was facing.

 and [that] he shall stand at the latter [day] upon the earth:

3rd Truth – Job knew that his Redeemer would come again.  Job recognized that he was King of Kings and Lord of Lords. There is coming a day He will return and judge the world for their sins.

26) And [though] after my skin [worms] destroy this [body], yet in my flesh shall I see God:

4th Truth – Job knew that he would be resurrected someday with glorified body. Being delivered from the many trials of life that he faced.

27) Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; [though] my reins be consumed within me.

5th Truth – Job knew He knew he would be dwelling with the Lord, personally, for an eternity.

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

For those who are saved …

What a wonderful set of motives to keep Job on the right track, serving God and being in submission to His will, no matter what the obstacles we may face in life.  Job summed up his commitment to the Lord by saying…. “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.” Job 13:15

As Christians, we should all be sharing in Job’s motive and his resolve to put His Lord first in his life no matter what we may face along life’s way.

For those who have yet to be saved…

Job shares, with all believers, the knowledge that his life on earth will be followed by a wonderful eternity with His Lord.   All of this was given to Job freely, through the grace of God, as Job responded to the calling of His Lord and trusted in the coming Messiah. 

This same set of promises can be a part of your life.  How does this take place? By simply turning from your sins and coming to Jesus accepting Him as your Lord and Savior.  He promises to save you and give you a glorious eternity with Him.

John 5:22-29

24) Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

25) Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.

26) For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;

27) And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.

28) Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,

29) And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.

 ——————————————————————————————-To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at  http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

 If you have any questions concerning this blog, or if you have a subject you would like discussed, please feel free to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.    I will answer all emails via my blog, email, or both.

 Take A Look At My Wife’s Artistic/Scriptural Devotion Blog http://alivewithchristart.blogspot.com

 Follow my Squidoo Instructional Lens “Presenting God’s Grace” “The Solemn Obligation To Present the Doctrines of Grace to the Lost and Saved Alike” http://www.squidoo.com/presenting-gods-grace

 May the Lord bless your study of His Word.  Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”

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Father’s Day Devotion – Leadership

SIH STSTA ICONOur families are falling apart due to a lack of Godly leadership. Our political world is crying out for a sincere, honest leader.  Churches are falling into error and modernism because they have no strong leader to show them the right way.  Our world is crying out for genuine leadership.

Before I go any farther, it is important for me to define what I mean by a “genuine leader”….

What makes up a genuine leader for our families, governments and churches?  I believe a genuine leader is someone who will seek to follow the Lord’s will in every decision that he makes; someone who loves those he is responsible to lead; someone who will ALWAYS put his personal interests second to the interest of those he is leading; someone who will attempt to work for our peace while not sacrificing our security in the process; and  finally, someone who seeks our prosperity, not leading us to take advantage of others, but by leading us to prosper through honesty, quality, innovation and productivity.   (I’m sure we could all add several other qualities to this list… but I think you “get my drift”!)

Sounds like a pipe dream doesn’t it?  Do these type of leaders exist in our world today?  To be honest, I believe they probably do… but they are few and far between.  Many of  the most sincere, well meaning leaders become corrupt as they forget the basic principles which should guide their leadership.  It has been said that “power corrupts”,  this statement has been proven true over and over again.

Why do they turn corrupt? The husbands in our families forget their vows, ignore all their family does for them, and abuses those whom they should love and cherish. It seems as if our political system is bent in favor of corruption and abuse of power.  Many believe, it is impossible to succeed in our political atmosphere without compromising the Scriptural values our society was founded upon.  Our churches have been infiltrated by leaders who choose to please people over pleasing their God. I am fearful that the only way to restore genuine leadership in our world is for an absolute miracle of God to take place.

In our blog study for today, I would like us to look at our Spiritual Leader, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the example He has set for our leaders to follow.

THE SCRIPTURES:

1Pet 2:21-25 (KJV)

21) For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

22) Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:

23) Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed [himself] to him that judgeth righteously:

24) Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

25) For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

THE STUDY:

In our text, 1 Peter 2:21-25, we have the characteristics of Godly leaders being exemplified in the life of Christ…

Leadership Principle #1 – A Godly Leader never asks his followers to do anything he, himself, is not willing to do…

“For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us”  

Christ has called His followers to be willing to make sacrifices, and perhaps, even suffer for Him. He was willing to do the same for His followers. (Luke 9:23-25)

Leadership Principle #2- A Godly Leader sets the example for his followers…

“leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:”

Christ has set the perfect example for his followers.  Touching every area of our lives, He set a blameless example to which we are to conform. (1 John 2:6)

Leadership Principle #3 – A Godly Leader lives a holy life before God…

Who did no sin,”

Although He was God, Christ was also the only sinless man to ever live on the earth.  His desire was to do the will of His heavenly Father “always”. (John 8:29)

Leadership Principle #4 – A Godly Leader speaks honestly and openly…

“neither was guile found in his mouth:”

Guile is “deceit” or “the hiding of truth”.   A Godly leader is always honest and open with his followers.  He doesn’t attempt to “spin” a subject or speak half truths to his people. (John 1:47)

Leadership Principle #5 – A Godly Leader is not filled with revenge or obsesses on “getting even”…

“Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not”

Despite his personal loss of reputation and respect, Christ accepted false accusations and abuse knowing that his followers would benefit from His arrest, trial, and crucifixion. (Hebs 12:3)

Leadership Principle #6 –   A Godly Leader, when falsely accused, trusts in God to bring the truth to light and to grant Him future eternal rewards...

“but committed [himself] to him that judgeth righteously:”

Jesus, when he was falsely accused, knew that in the end, His Father would justify His actions and exalt Him to an honored position of authority.  All because He was faithful to His God. (Jer 11:20, Rom 12:19)

Leadership Principle #7 –   A Godly Leader, is willing to sacrifice himself for the good of His followers…

“Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness:”

Our Lord Jesus was willing to bear our sins and give His life on the cross, all so that we might receive forgiveness, adoption and an eternal existence with Him. (Gal 1:14, Titus 2:14)

Leadership Principle #8 –   A Godly Leader, understands and works to meet the needs of his followers…

“by whose stripes ye were healed.”

The Lord understood our spiritual needs and then proceeded to work to meet those needs through His death on the cross. It is only through the sacrifice of Christ that we can find true       healing from our sins. (Luke 4:18)

Leadership Principle #9 –   A Godly Leader will not always be recognized for his accomplishments on behalf of the people…

“For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned”

 Throughout mankind’s sinful existence on earth, many have ignored, or rejected, his works on           their behalf.  But there was always a remnant that did come to a knowledge and appreciation of what he had accomplished on their behalf. ( John 5:39-41, Rom 11:5)

 Leadership Principle #10 –   A Godly Leader will always concentrate on leading, feeding and protecting his followers…

“unto the Shepherd “

 The three great roles of a shepherd are to lead, feed, and protect his flock. These are the three          great roles of a Godly leader as well.   By leading his followers, he is setting the right example and simply asking his flock to follow in his steps.  By feeding them, he is making sure they are having their needs (both physical and spiritual) met.  By protecting them, he is making sure that his people are kept safe from the hands of their enemies both within and without.

If a leader supplies these for his people, he is judged, by God, to be a success.  (John 10:11-16, Hebs 13:20-21)

Leadership Principle #11 –   A Godly Leader will understand, and willingly accept the great responsibility related to the office he is holding or is desiring to hold…

and Bishop of your souls.”

 The word for “bishop” means “one that watches over others to insure their welfare.”  This is the great responsibility of all leaders… by leading, feeding and protecting their people they fulfill their oversight responsibilities.  Just as Christ has perfectly done for His people.

Phil 4:19-20 (KJV)

“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Now unto God and our Father [be] glory for ever and ever. Amen.”

 Christ has met all of our needs.  He was faithful in the oversight responsibilities that the Father had placed upon Him.   If only our human leaders saw the need to emulate the leadership role of Christ.

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

For those who are saved…

We need to be aware of the gracious leadership that Christ supplies and be appreciative for all He has done for us.

And we need to be in prayer that the Lord might raise up Godly leaders, who would be willing to accept their God-given responsibilities and seek to rule over their people with spiritual attitudes and desires.

We have such a great need for them in our families, churches, business and all the political segments of this world.

For those who have never received His gracious salvation into our lives…

Wouldn’t you like to know that Christ is your shepherd and bishop?  Do you not desire to have confidence He is actively intervening in your life to meet your every need, both now and throughout eternity?  If so, turn from your sins to Christ for salvation… He will abundantly pardon, He will meet you every need and He will take the leadership of your life from this day forward.

If you have any questions about your condition or the salvation that the Lord so graciously offers,  you can look to several sources for further information:  A local Bible-teaching church in your area, or you are welcome to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com, or you can refer to my blog page entitled “How to have a relationship with God” for more teachings on the subject of salvation.

 May the Lord bless you as you seek His truth.

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My Main Blog “Settled In Heaven” (updated twice weekly) – http://settledinheaven.wordpress.com

The following are other places you can find “Settled In Heaven” blog (updated once per month):

www.settledinheavenbibleblog.posterous.com

www.settledinheavenblog.blogspot.com

To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at  http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

If you have any questions concerning this blog, or if you have a subject you would like discussed, please feel free to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.    I will answer all emails via my blog, email, or both.

Take A Look At My Wife’s Artistic/Scriptural Devotion Blog http://alivewithchristart.blogspot.com

Follow my Squidoo Instructional Lens “Presenting God’s Grace” “The Solemn Obligation To Present the Doctrines of Grace to the Lost and Saved Alike” http://www.squidoo.com/presenting-gods-grace

May the Lord bless your study of His Word.  Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”

Stop bugging me about Jesus!

SIH STSTA ICON“Stop bugging me about Jesus” … how many times have you thought this or, perhaps, even said this to someone (especially under the rules of today’s politically correct society).  When someone attempts to share the teachings of God’s Word with you, it seems to be an act of intrusion, thoughtlessness, attempted manipulation and/or disrespect.

So why do Christians feel the need to “push” Jesus on you?  Why don’t they just shut up and keep their beliefs to themselves?   In this blog posting, we will be trying to explain why those who are followers of Christ feel such an urgency to share their faith in Christ with you.

By taking a look at Romans 10:1-17 we can come to a clear understanding of why Christians desire to share the teachings of Christ to others…

THE SCRIPTURES:

Rom 10:1-17 (KJV)

1) Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.

2) For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.

3) For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

4) For Christ [is] the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

5) For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.

6) But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down [from above]:)

7) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

8) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, [even] in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

9) 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.

10) For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

11) For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

12) For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

13) For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

14) How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?

15) And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

16) But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?

17) So then faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

 THE STUDY:

In our study, the Apostle Paul’s desire to share the good news about Christ to those around him is brought into our view.  His desire to share this good news is a characteristic shared by anyone who is a true follower of Jesus Christ.

Rom 10:1-17

 A Christian shares his faith in Christ with you because he is concerned about your spiritual wellbeing.

1) Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.

Paul had written this verse to emphasize he was concerned about the spiritual well-being of the all people, both Jew and Gentile.

Remember, at this point in time, following his calling from the Lord, Paul dedicated his life to sharing the truth of God’s word to those who were lost within the Gentile nations surrounding Israel.   Here, he affirms he not only was concerned with the spiritual need of Gentiles, but also with Jewish people who needed Christ.

A Christian shares his faith in Christ with you because he understands the spiritual struggle you face.

2) For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.

3) For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Based upon his past experiences, Paul understood that trying to be “good enough” to meet the God’s high standards was impossible for anyone to achieve.  Although we all do good works throughout our lifetime, these good works can never meet the standard God has set for us.

We can be very excited and extremely dedicated to the task of meeting the perfect demands of a holy God.  But because we do not understand the perfect nature of God’s righteous standard  we assume we can be good enough to please God.

Paul had tried to do the same thing during his lifetime;  but he found out that he still fell short of the divine demand for a perfect righteousness. (Philippians 3:4-7)

 A Christian shares his faith in Christ with you because he understands that only Christ can meet your spiritual needs.

4) For Christ [is] the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

5) For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.

6) But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down [from above]:)

7) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

When Christ enters our life as Lord and Savior, we no longer need to labor to keep the law in the hopes of being accepted by God.  Through Christ’s work on the cross, He supplied us with His righteousness, in other words His acceptance by God was placed upon us.  We no longer must meet God’s righteous demands for our life because Christ has met those demands for us.  We are now found acceptable by God, based upon what Christ has done for us.

When Moses gave us the ten commandments, and all the other dictates of God’s laws, he made it plain that this was the perfect standard that we must live by.  We all know through our life experiences that we cannot perfectly keep these commands.  When everything is said and done, the law of God only shows us our inability to be perfect… it shows us that we do not meet the high standards God has set for us.  (Galatians 3:19-27, Romans 3:20-22).

His acceptance of us is freely given it cannot be found by our labors…. We cannot climb high enough to find Christ and bring Him down to meet with us, nor can we dive so deeply as to bring Christ back to the earth and meet with us as an equal.

No God, in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ, is higher than us, He is sinlessly perfect and accepted by His Father in heaven.  We cannot trust in our labors to find Him and meet with Him, we must come to Him by faith.

 A Christian shares his faith in Christ with you because he understands that if you trust in Christ, you will be accepted by God.

8) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, [even] in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

9) 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.

10) For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

11) For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

12) For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

13) For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved

You have now heard that your works cannot save you, but Christ can.  How does this take place in your life?  By trusting in Christ.

Salvation is given to us when we:

First, realize that we have not lived up to the perfect standard God has set for us.  We have disobeyed Him, we have displeased Him, we are separated from Him, and can do no good works that cause Him to accept us.

Secondly, are sorry for disobeying the Lord, we regret what we have done against Him, we have sinned against the Almighty Creator, the One to whom we owe our existence.

Thirdly, we turn from those sins, abhorring and forsaking them.

Fourth, we turn to Christ, by faith, trusting His work on the cross to save us from the debt of our sins.   We come to Him willing to accept Him as our Lord, and willing to please Him with our lives.

Note that Paul mentions confession as an integral part of our salvation experience.  Anyone who sincerely has come to Christ, realizing the great gift that He has given to them, will want to share that gift with others.  If one who claims to be saved doesn’t want to share the way of salvation with others, there is a real question whether he has experience true salvation.  (Mark 8:34-38)

A Christian shares his faith in Christ with you because he understands that it is through knowledge of Christ that you can come to faith in Him.

14) How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?

15) And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

16) But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?

17) So then faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God…

How can you believe in One that you have never heard?  This is the key to understanding why Christians want to share Christ with you.  They want you to have a mental knowledge of who He is and what He has done for you… in that way, based on the knowledge you have been given about Christ, by His grace, you can turn to Him, trust in Him and receive His righteousness and be accepted by God.

Why does a Christian share Christ with you?  Because Christians care about you and your eternal destiny, they want to share with you the greatest gift that a person can receive.

Remember, they are risking your rejection, and public ridicule to bring to you the good news of Christ.

Accept their message, realizing they are complimenting you.  They are saying that you are worthy of their concern, their effort, their time, their prayers and most importantly, their love.

1John 4:7-11 (KJV)

7) Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.

8) He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

9) In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.

10) Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son [to be] the propitiation for our sins.

11) Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another

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My Main Blog “Settled In Heaven” (updated twice weekly) – http://settledinheaven.wordpress.com

The following are other places you can find “Settled In Heaven” blog (updated once per month):

www.settledinheavenbibleblog.posterous.com

www.settledinheavenblog.blogspot.com

To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at  http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

If you have any questions concerning this blog, or if you have a subject you would like discussed, please feel free to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.    I will answer all emails via my blog, email, or both.

Take A Look At My Wife’s Artistic/Scriptural Devotion Blog http://alivewithchristart.blogspot.com

Follow my Squidoo Instructional Lens “Presenting God’s Grace” “The Solemn Obligation To Present the Doctrines of Grace to the Lost and Saved Alike” http://www.squidoo.com/presenting-gods-grace

May the Lord bless your study of His Word.  Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”   http://settledinheaven.wordpress.com

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