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Monthly Archives: April 2012

Forgiveness

Ps 130:3-4 – If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?  But [there is] forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.

The forgiveness takes its rightful place among the greatest themes of the Bible.  Whether we are speaking of God forgiving the sin of man, or man forgiving the sins of other men, forgiveness is one of the highest, most noble graces that can be exercised this side of heaven.  The importance of a proper understanding of forgiveness cannot be over-emphasized.

Let’s take a few moments to study the Biblical meaning of “forgiveness”.

THE SCRIPTURES:

Psalm 130:3-4

THE STUDY:

 One of the easiest ways to understand the idea of forgiveness is by studying the six different words that are translated “forgive” or “forgiveness” in the Word of God.  Of these six words, three are found in the Old Testament and three are found in the New Testament…

3 Hebrew words for forgiveness

  1. Kafar – to cover, appease, disannul (Jer 18:23)
  2. Nasa – to take away, hold up, carry, burn, cast away (Gen 50:17, Exo 10:17, Exo 32:32 etc)
  3. Salach – to pardon, spare (Lev 4:20, Lev 4:26, Lev 4:31 etc)

3 Greek words for forgiveness

  1. Apoleuien – to release, loose, set at liberty (Luke 6:37)
  2. Charizomai – grace, deliver, grant (2 Cor 2:7, 2:10, 2:13 etc)
  3. Aphesis – to send away, lay aside, put away (Matt 6:12, 14, 15 etc.)

(In addition to these words, the Greek word “paresis” is used to imply forgiveness in Roms 3:25.  It is translated “remission” and carries with it the meaning of “to purchase, possess, or obtain”)

What can we learn about forgiveness from the above vocabulary?

Kafar – Forgiveness involves covering up sin, motivated by love.

Rom 4:6-8 – Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, [Saying], Blessed [are] they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed [is] the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

1Pet 4:8 – And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

Ps 51:1-3 – To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba. Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.  Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin [is] ever before me.

Nasa – Forgiveness involves casting the offense behind us never to act upon it again.

Isa 38:17 – Behold, for peace I had great bitterness: but thou hast in love to my soul [delivered it] from the pit of corruption: for thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back.

Mic 7:19 – He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.

Heb 10:17 – And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.

Salach  – Forgiveness involves declaring innocent (justifying) those who have committed the offense.   Many times this involves willingly accepting suffering on behalf of the guilty party.

Isa 53:10-12 – Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put [him] to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong [his] days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.  He shall see of the travail of his soul, [and] shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him [a portion] with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Titus 2:14 – Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

1John 1:5-10 – This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.  If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.  If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

Apoleuien – Forgiveness involves releasing the offender from the continuing bondage, or debt, of the sin they have committed.

Rom 6:6-9 – Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with [him], that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin.  Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.

Gal 5:1 – Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.

Rom 5:8-9 – But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.

Luke 11:4 – And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

Charizomai – Forgiveness is undeserved by the offender, in other words… it is an act of grace.

Eph 1:7 – In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Rom 3:23-24 – For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

Aphesis  – Forgiveness involves laying aside grudges, and feelings of anger, allowing the possiblility of reconciliation to those truly repentant.

Rom 5:10 – For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

Eph 2:14-16 – For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition [between us]; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, [even] the law of commandments [contained] in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, [so] making peace;  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

For those who have trusted in Christ.

Our text: Ps 130:3-4 – If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?  But [there is] forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.

The above verses help to remind us of the great responsibilities we have ….

First of all, let us remember that apart from God’s gracious forgiveness, we too would be unable to stand before Him on the last judgment day. We would rightfully deserve eternity in the Lake of Fire.  May we all have a thankful, reverent spirit toward the Lord for His gracious forgiveness to us.

Secondly, without God’s forgiveness, those around us will be facing eternal judgment as well.  Our need?  We must tell others of their need of Christ, His love, grace and forgiveness, so that they can come to a saving knowledge of Him.

Thirdly, we are to be ready to forgive others, giving to those around us a living example of our Gracious, Forgiving Lord, who can forgive the greatest of their sins.

For those who have never trusted in Christ.

Our text: Ps 130:3-4 – If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?  But [there is] forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.

As these above verses clearly declare…. Anyone who has not found forgiveness in the shed blood of Jesus Christ will be unable to stand before the Righteous Lord on the Day of Judgment.  Won’t you look to Him for forgiveness today?  Please recognize your sinful condition and nned of forgiveness.  Look to Christ realizing that you can do nothing to gain salvation of your own ability or works.  Trust in the work of Christ (His death and resurrection) as the basis of your forgiveness.  And look to Him as the Lord of your life… being willing to do whatever He may ask of you.

This is the true way of salvation… this is the true path to forgiveness.  May the Lord bless you as you seek His face.

If you have any questions concerning the way of salvation please feel free to visit or call a Bible teaching church in your area.  They will be happy to speak to you about the Lord Jesus and the salvation He graciously gives.

Or, if you would rather, feel welcome to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.  I’ll be more than happy to answer any question you may have.

Also, if you look at my blog page “How To Have A Relationship With God”.  On this page you will find several blog entries explaining the way of salvation.

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Settled In Heaven Ministries– http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH’s Think On These Things: Heb 11:3

Heb 11:3  Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

 As we look into God’s Word, in Genesis chapter 1, we find the clear teaching that the Lord simply spoke the world into existence.  “Let there be light” or “let there be a firmament…” the list goes on and on.

Were we there when He spoke the world into existence?  Absolutely not!  How do we understand that He verbally brought everything into existence?   It is by our faith.  It is our faith in our Lord, and in His Word, that gives us an understanding of those things that otherwise could not be understood.

Visible nature was created from nothing.  When our Lord spoke the creative word… creation took place, not just a reforming of what already existed, but a bringing into existence that which previously was nothingness.  From this, we can learn two basic principles:

  1. The power of God and His Word is limitless.  To create our world from nothing proves this.
  2. It is through God’s gift of faith and the truths of His Word, that many graces are appropriated to our lives.  Along with an understanding of divine truths, spiritual life and Godly decision making, are some of the graces received when we exercise faith in the Lord and the message of His Word.

(Please note: The converse is true as well. If we do not believe His Word it is of no benefit to us. It will only increase our responsibility at the last judgment.  It will be one the standards used to determine the level of our punishment as we stand before Him.)

Let’s all determine in our hearts to approach God’s Word in a spirit of faith.  It is His perfect, powerful, faithful Word.  It does not contain errors, nor does it contain false promises.  We can rest on the knowledge Christ and His Word can be relied upon to meet our every spiritual need.

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH Text Blog: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

SIH Video Blog: http://youtube.com/settledinheaven/

SIH Email: settledinheaven@gmail.com

SIH’s Think On These Things: Heb 11:1-2

Heb 11:1-2  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.  (2)  For by it the elders obtained a good report.

Hebrews 11 is commonly called “the faith chapter of the Bible”.  In this chapter, the Lord gives us many different examples of Old Testament individuals who exercised faith in their day to day walk with the Lord.  Based upon the faith they possessed, they were able to do great things for Him.

I trust as we study this chapter, we will find a lot of examples of faith that will help us to do great things for our Lord.

To begin our study, Hebrews 11 gives us an understanding of the meaning of “faith”.  We are told that faith is: “The substance of things hoped for”

“Substance” is the idea of “confidence or absolute assurance”.  It is our faith in what Christ has done for us in the past that gives us assurance of future blessings from Him.  (This principle is found in Rom 8:32.)

This same idea is expressed differently in the phrase… “The evidence of things not seen”

The word “evidence” carries with it the idea of “proof that brings assurance”. Once again, we are told that, based upon our faith in His work, we receive proof that assures us of the promises of God we have yet to receive.

It is by this life changing faith, that the OT saints of the past (elders) pleased God with their lives.

Today, let’s keep in our mind the great sacrifice He has made for us. In doing so, we will be allowing hope in our future to flourish knowing that… “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” (Rom 8:32)

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

“He Is Not Here…”

Matt 28:6 – “He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.”

Need I Say More?

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH’s Think On These Things: 1 Cor 15:55-58

 

1Cor 15:55-58 (55)  O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?  (56)  The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.  (57)  But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  (58)  Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

The resurrection of Christ, along with the future resurrection and glorification of the believer’s body is absolute, irrefutable evidence that our Lord Jesus Christ has overcome sin and it’s product, death.

Based upon the counsels of God, worked through the work of Christ, sin and death were totally defeated and it’s affects entirely reversed through the gracious intervention of God in the life of those who are brought to salvation.

After all that our Lord has done for us, we are to serve Him with all our being in three ways:

  1. Stedfast – to be settled, certain, assured
  2. Unmoveable – to be immoveable, to be firmly fixed
  3. Always Abounding – to increase and overflow
  4. Know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord – Be certain your painful labors are of great value due the Lord (His empowering and intervention ) in your work.

On this Easter weekend, what better way is there to honor our Lord for all He has done for us?  As Paul said…

Rom 12:1  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

The Unseen Blessings of God

One of the most blessed experiences we can enjoy is the realization that the greatest blessings we receive from the Lord are the blessings we cannot see with our physical eyes.  Stop and think about it, our salvation, the forgiveness of our sins, is the greatest blessing we can receive from our Lord…. this we cannot see with our eyes.  The unseen blessings of God are not limited to our salvation, however.   Our ability to understand the Scriptures,  our faith, the leadership of the indwelling Spirit of God, conviction of our sin, the list goes on and on.  What would our life be like without these precious, yet unseen, gifts that are so graciously given to us by our Heavenly Father?

For years, as a younger Christian, I did not fully appreciate the unseen blessings of God in my life.  As I grow older, and hopefully, a bit wiser, I am beginning to place greater value in the unseen blessings of God.  Not only are the unseen blessings becoming more precious to me, but I am finding that the physical blessings have faded in comparison to the value and need of the unseen gifts of God.

In Psalm 4, King David reminds us of the great importance and value of the unseen blessings of God.

THE SCRIPTURES:

Ps 4:6-8 (KJV)

6) [There be] many that say, Who will shew us [any] good? LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us.  7) Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time [that] their corn and their wine increased.  8) I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety.

THE STUDY:

In our text, King David mentions three of the unseen blessings of God… gladness, peace, and safety.  All three of these cannot be seen with the eyes and are the results of the Lord’s favor that He places upon His people:

6) [There be] many that say, Who will shew us [any] good? LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us.

7) Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time [that] their corn and their wine increased.

8) I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety.

In the context, the beginning of verse 6 refers to an attitude of selfishness that existed in David’s day and continues to exist today:

“There be many that say, Who will shew us any good?” 

A selfish, spiritually immature attitude is characterized by being concerned about RECEIVING visible blessings  instead of being content with the unseen things of God.

Here, the individual is asking, “What can I receive?”, “How can I get what is coming to me?”, “How can I be sure I get my fair share?”.

These questions  sound familiar to us all, don’t they?    How many times have we seen this attitude in others lives?  We even see this attitude in the words and actions of many professing Christians.  And, if we are honest, we’ve seen this attitude pop up from time to time in our own lives.

David now turns our attention to the comparable, but God pleasing attitude we should all possess…

 “LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us.”

Instead of being concerned “getting our fair share”, we should be concerned with having God’s favor placed upon us.  David’s concern was not centered on a selfish desire to not miss out on a physical possession, but his attention was focused upon the unseen favor of his Heavenly Father.

The word contenance refers to the “face” of God.  David, in essence wasn’t asking for his “fair share”. He was asking for God to graciously look upon him, a sinful human being, and place the light of His presence upon King David and his nation.

David recognized the great value and blessing of being in a state of favor with God.  Even though this blessing cannot be seen, nor valued with the use of a calculator; possessing the knowledge that our Lord is looking upon us, giving us His attention and presence, is of greater value than all the riches this world has to offer.

After David compares the attitudes of those who understand the value of the unseen blessing of God with those who lack this understanding, he continues comparing visible blessings with the invisible blessings of God…

“Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time [that] their corn and their wine increased.”

The unseen blessing David had received, gladness of heart, is a far greater blessing that the physical, visible blessings of receiving material possessions.  Please make no mistake about it… all of our material possessions come from our Lord.  They are gifts of His grace and of great value to us.  However, these pale in comparison to the spiritual, unseen blessings He has given to us.

David understood it was far better to have an empty stomach than to have an empty heart lacking joy and gladness. As Christians, if we value the unseen blessings of God, we can rejoice during times of physical loss; we can praise His name when we lack the physical possessions of life, knowing that our inward joy is a far greater gift than the food that we eat.

“I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety.”

Finally, David points to two other unseen blessings that he values greatly in his life… peace and safety.  Just knowing we are at peace with God, is a blessing that goes beyond our understanding (Phil 4:7).  How can a sinful, fallen man find peace with the Holy, Almighty, Just God of the Universe?   Recognizing we have graciously been given peace with God can never be fully comprehended.

David then touches on the ability to rest at night, stemming directly from the peace with God that he possessed.  What a blessing it is to be able to lie down in peace, knowing no matter what the world may put in our way, He will be with us, care for us, and enable us to face whatever the world may place in our path.

Finally, David emphasizes the great blessing of the unseen safety that we possess in our Lord.  He promises to protect us from anything that will harm us (He only allows what is for our good and His glory).  He will be with us through any trial, much like He accompanied the Hebrew children in the fiery furnace of the Babylonians (Daniel 3:).

But, most importantly, as His children, we possess eternal safety and security in Him.  Through the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the cross, we are not facing eternal separation from God in the Lake of Fire.  Although we deserve this separation and punishment, Jesus Christ took it upon Himself, being made a substitute for us.

It is because of this unseen blessing of God, that we can rest our hear at night, knowing, and not doubting, our eternal destiny has been made secure in His work.

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

I am trusting the the Lord will these wonderful verses from His Word will help each of us to come to a greater understanding of the tremendous invisible blessings we possess, when we trust in Him for our salvation.

Although unseen, these blessings are, by far, the greatest possessions that man can possess on the face of the planet earth.  The next time we see our checkbook balance fading away, or we open the cupboard and see an empty shelf staring at us, let us praise Him for the great unseen blessings that we possess within us.  Our eternity is secure in Him.  We have invaluable rewards awaiting us in eternity.   His grace is sufficient to meet our every need.

When we receive bad news from our doctor, and the situation seems so hopeless, let’s praise Him. No matter what physical affliction may be ravishing our body, lets look to Him  in appreciation, knowing that He may choose to heal us.  However, if He chooses to allow the affliction to continue, we can always know we have an unseen glorified body awaiting us throughout eternity.

These great blessings are possessed by those who have placed their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ for their salvation.  If you have any questions about salvation, I have a tab available on my blog that gives in depth information on what salvation is and what you must do to be saved.  Please click on this link for more information about salvation.

If you continue to have questions or concerns about your salvation, find a Bible-believing church in your area.  The Pastor would be glad to share Christ and the way of salvation with you.   If you feel more comfortable communicating through email, you are always welcome to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.

May the Lord bless you as you seek His truth.

 SIH Homepage:  http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH’s Think On These Things: 1 Cor 15:53-54

1Cor 15:53-54 (53)  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.  (54)  So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. 

Our resurrection body will differ from our earthly body in two ways:

  1. Our earthly body is capable of aging, becoming sick, physically deteriorating and, eventually, decaying in the grave.  This is all a part of being “corruptible”. But our resurrection body will never feel any effects of sin, aging or death. In other words it is “incorruptible”.
  2. Our earthly body is able to be separated from our spirit, this takes place at physical death. The ability to experience physical death is called being mortal. Once received, our resurrection body will never be separated from our spirit.  It will never      experience death.  This is taught by the phrase to “put on immortality”.

When our physical, fleshly bodies take upon themselves immortality and incorruption, we can clearly see that death is now defeated. Its grasp on us has come to an end.  Sin, sickness, loss of strength, death and eventual decay will no longer take place in our lives.

How can this be?  It is only because our Lord Jesus Christ has gotten the victory over sin (and sin’s results: spiritual and physical death) that all these will come to an end.  He is the ultimate victor over sin and its many gruesome effects in our lives….

Rom 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

Rev 21:4  And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH Text Blog: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

SIH Video Blog: http://youtube.com/settledinheaven/

SIH Email: settledinheaven@gmail.com

SIH’s Think On These Things: 1 Cor 15:52

1Cor 15:52  In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 

Our attention is now turned to the event that will bring about the receipt of our glorified bodies… the resurrection (which takes place at the return of Christ to the earth at His second coming).

Several truths about the second coming are presented to us:

  1. The 2nd coming and resurrection of the dead will take place suddenly “In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye”
  2. The bodies of the dead will be called forth from the graves much like the trumpets being blown in the Old Testament times calling soldiers, or townspeople, to gather.  It is possible this is literal trumpets being blown by the angels accompanying Christ at His coming. “At the last trump, for the trumpet shall sound”.
  3. All bodies will be resurrected from the graves and given the ability to exist eternally.       (For the saved, their bodies are glorified.  For the lost their bodies are enabled to      exist eternally in the Lake of Fire.) “The dead shall be raised incorruptible”
  4. The bodies of the saved will receive additional changes to them: All the effects of sin will be eradicated from the believer’s body, etc.  “and we shall be changed”

For the believer, what a wonderful blessing awaits at the 2nd coming of Christ!  Let us all be faithful in service waiting for that wonderful day!

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH Text Blog: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

SIH Video Blog: http://youtube.com/settledinheaven/

SIH Email: settledinheaven@gmail.com

SIH’s Think On These Things: 1 Cor 15:51

1Cor 15:51 (51)  Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed…

Our attention is now turned to the event that will bring about the glorification of the believer’s body… the resurrection (which takes place at the second coming of Christ).

Paul begins by saying that these things are a “mystery”.  The Greek word for “mystery” means “to shut the mouth”. In other words, it cannot be fully explained, and when we learn of it, we are shocked and speechless.

When Christ comes back, the bodies of the vast majority of believers will be dead in the graves, however, some will still be alive on earth.  In this verse, Paul describes the believer’s body that has entered the grave as being at rest or “asleep”.

The reason why Paul describes the Christian’s body after death as “sleeping” is because:

  1. Like sleep, death does not harm the body of a Christian, it actually aids the body (the body is changed at the resurrection). Vs 51
  2. Like sleep, the bodies of Christians will arise again. Vs 52
  3. Like sleep, no labor, nor work, is done by the physical body at death.  It lies in      the grave awaiting for the coming resurrection.  (Eccl 9:10)

Please note: The Bible NOWHERE speaks of “soul sleep”.  Whenever the Bible speaks of death as “sleeping” it is referring to the condition of the body in the grave, not the soul of the one who has passed away.)

What a wonderful blessing it is to know that, when we die, our spirit will go home to be with the Lord in heaven, while our bodies will sleep in the grave to be awakened at His 2nd coming!

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH Text Blog: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

SIH Video Blog: http://youtube.com/settledinheaven/

SIH Email: settledinheaven@gmail.com

SIH’s Think On These Things: 1 Cor 15:48-50

 

1Cor 15:48-50  As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly.  (49)  And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.  (50)  Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

Paul now addresses one of the reasons why we need our resurrected body…

Our bodies are reflections of the bodies of those from which we proceed:

  1. Our human bodies of dust reflect the body of the one through which has been passed our physical life (the first Adam).
  2. Likewise, our resurrection glorified body will take upon itself the image of the body of the One through which we receive our spiritual life (the second Adam – Christ).

What a blessing it is to know that, if we possess spiritual life through Christ, we will receive new bodies at our resurrection.  Our temporal, fallen bodies which have been touched by sin, sickness and eventual death will be replaced with glorified bodies made in the image of Christ’s post resurrection body.   This is an absolute necessity for the believer because without remade bodies we could not enter into the presence of a Holy God and live eternally with Him.

Let’s make a concerted effort to serve Him today our of appreciation for the new bodies we are promised to receive at our resurrection.

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

We Are All Witnesses

“We are all witnesses” is a slogan applied to the fans of Lebron James during his time with the Cleveland Cavaliers.   This slogan became so popular that a huge banner was hung in downtown Cleveland declaring Cleveland’s affinity with Lebron.  To many basketball fans, this slogan was a unique way of showcasing the talent of Lebron, the city of Cleveland and the Nike shoes that he was endorsing.

Although this slogan was unique in the world of sports and marketing, it has existed for millennium in the word of God.  For at least 2000 years, the phrase has been used to describe the followers of Jesus Christ.  Let’s take a look at the Biblical phrase “Witness” and what being a witness for Jesus Christ involves.

THE SCRIPTURES:

 Acts 5:29-32 (KJV) Then Peter and the [other] apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.  The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.  Him hath God exalted with his right hand [to be] a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.  And we are his witnesses of these things; and [so is] also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.

THE STUDY:

29) Then Peter and the [other] apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.

 In the context of our study, the subject at hand is the subject of obedience.  Peter and the other apostles were in agreement that they owed the Lord their uncompromising obedience.  They were to put their Lord’s desires ahead of the desires and pleasure of men.

They begin to explain why they have dedicated their lives to fulfilling their Lord’s desires…

 30) The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.

31) Him hath God exalted with his right hand [to be] a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.

 They clearly explain God’s work that He performed to bring salvation to His people:

  1.  The God of our fathers raised up JesusGod was willing to deliver His Son into a wicked, sinful world.
  2. whom ye slew and hanged on a tree – When Christ entered this world, He was abused, mistreated and eventually, murdered on a cross.  The Father knew beforehand that this would be the fate of His Son, but He still chose to send Him into this world.
  3. Him hath God exalted with his right hand [to be] a Prince and a Saviour – Because Jesus was obedient to the will of His Father, coming to the earth, suffering mankind’s abuse and dying on the cross;  Christ was then exalted      to His rightful position as Lord and Deliverer of all.
  4. for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. – Jesus, as Lord and Deliverer, turned Israel from their sin to the service of Christ; as well as, granting forgiveness, through His death on the cross for the sins of those who come to Him.

These reasons are why both Peter, and the other apostles, had dedicated their lives to the service of their God.  After all God has done for them, how could they do anything else for Him?

Also, please notice the basic principle of being a witness simply involves telling others what our Lord has done on our behalf.  That is all there is to it.  Simply, tell others about what He has done for you.

Tell them about your Lord and how He willingly gave His life on the cross to pay the price for your sins.

Give them examples of His workings in your personal life: how He has comforted you in times of distress; how He has granted you faith in the most trying of times; or perhaps, how you received peace in the midst of the storms of life.

For the Christian this is the essence of living a life of witness for the Lord.

32) And we are his witnesses of these things; and [so is] also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.

Not only did Peter and the other apostles owe their obedience to Him, they also were called to be witnesses of His workings of salvation among men.

It is important to note that this word “witness” comes from the Greek word “martus” which carries with it the idea of being a “martyr”.  In other words, being a witness for Christ implies being willing to give our all, even to the point of death, for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

So not only was Peter and the apostles called to obey their God but they knew their responsibility included a willingness to testify of His works, even to the point of death.  This is being a true “witness” for Him.

We can be living witnesses for Him through the power of the Holy Spirit that indwells all believers.  What we cannot do because of our sinful flesh, the Lord allows us to do through the empowering of the Holy Spirit within us.

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

As Christians, the willingness to give our all in service to Him is the principle found in Roms 12:1-2…

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service.   And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

To be a living sacrifice revealing His works to others involves being willing to give our all for Him.  Just as these verses teach us… after all He has done for us… isn’t giving our all for Him simply a reasonable response on our behalf?

To those who have never received Christ as your Lord and Savior…

If you have any questions about salvation, I have a tab available on my blog that gives in depth information on what salvation is and what you must do to be saved.  Please click on his link for more information about salvation.

If you continue to have questions or concerns about your salvation, find a Bible-believing church in your area.  The Pastor would be glad to share Christ and the way of salvation with you.   If you feel more comfortable communicating through email, you are always welcome to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.

May the Lord bless you as you seek His truth.

SIH’s Think On These Things: 1 Cor 15:45-47

1Cor 15:45-47  (45)  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.  (46)  Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual.  (47)  The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. 

 The first Adam, the first created human being, was a creation of God that possessed both human, physical life and an immortal soul.  As such, this Adam possessed the ability to change, to commit sin, and to fall from his blessed position of communion with God.

The last Adam is referring to Christ.  Why is Christ called the “last Adam”?

  1. Just as Adam was unique, being the first human ever created… so too, Christ.  He is      truly the “God-Man”.  He is God Himself come to earth as a man.
  2. Also, what Adam lost in the fall, Christ came to regain for mankind.  Through the      death of Christ, we can regain communion with God, spiritual life, and a perfect environment in which to live.

Here we are told that:

  1. Christ (the last Adam) was made a “quickening spirit”.   Adam could only possess      life.  Christ can give life.
  2. Adam was set apart from animals by his “soul”.  Christ was set apart from man being the spirit of the living God.
  3. Adam’s body was formed from the earth, and as such, finds his origins in the earth.       Christ, as God, finds His origins in heaven.

What a wonderful, special Lord we serve!

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH Text Blog: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

SIH Video Blog: http://youtube.com/settledinheaven/

SIH Email: settledinheaven@gmail.com

SIH’s Think On These Things: 1 Cor 15:42-44

1Cor 15:42-44  So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power:  It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

The bodies we receive at the resurrection will be different from our present bodies in several ways:

  1. Our present bodies are capable of death and decay (corruption); not so our resurrected bodies (incorruption).
  2. Our present bodies are touched by sin and fallen by nature (dishonor); not so our resurrected bodies which are resurrected in a pure, sinless condition (glory).
  3. Our present bodies are brought into the world with death as it’s certain end (weak); not so our resurrected bodies which are created for eternal existence (power)
  4. Our present bodies are natural, fleshly, material in composition (natural); not so our resurrected bodies which are spiritual in composition (spiritual).

These verses bring to my mind… 1Co 2:9  But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

What wonderful, indescribable, bodies await those of us who have trusted in Christ as our Savior!

May the Lord bless each one of us as we “Think On These Things”.

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org

SIH Text Blog: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

SIH Video Blog: http://youtube.com/settledinheaven/

SIH Email: settledinheaven@gmail.com