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Entries in Sin (9)

Tuesday
Apr112017

Why is Jesus called the Lamb of God?

When seeing Jesus for the first time, John the Baptist said: “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).  Thirty-one times in the book of Revelation the word Lamb is used. In 1 Peter 1:18-19, we are told we have been redeemed with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.  

Did you see that?  Precious blood.  Precious blood as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.  Oh my, these are the most beautiful truths. 

Here are a few tips that will make the below truths from God’s Word jump off the page and #wow your heart: 

Ask God to give you understanding as you read and as you read

(1) circle every reference to blood

(2) put a square around every reference to lamb

(3) underline every reference to Passover.  

After you read each passage, looked back at the words you marked (they should jump out at you) and

(4) make a quick and simple list of what you learned about bloodlamb, and Passover.  

I promise you will be left in awe and wonder. 

  • Romans 6:23 (The word death implies both physical death and exclusion from the presence and favor of God in consequence of sin and disobedience but never as extinction.)
  • Romans 5:6-10 (Justification means declared right with God.  Reconciled means to change from enmity to friendship.)
  • Leviticus 17:11
  • Leviticus 5:5-9
  • Exodus 11:4-7
  • Exodus 12:1-27
  • John 13:1-2(a)
  • John 18:37-40
  • John 19 (In verse 30, “it is finished” can also be translated “paid in full”.  In those days when a debt had been paid in full, the word “tetelestai" was stamped or written across the certificate of debt and nailed where all could see.  The last words spoken by Jesus were - I have paid your sin debt in full – it is finished!)
  • Ephesians 1:7
  • 1 Peter 1:18-19
  • John 1:29 (“Takes away” means to take up, carry away, or remove by carrying away.  To take away sin means to take away the imputation or punishment.)
  • Revelation 5:12

“Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.” Revelation 5:12

Sunday
Jan202013

What in the world?

 

What in the world is going on?  Sure seems like there is more and more evil in the world, doesn't it?  Have you ever seen the World Clock?  If not, you might want to check it out.  Click on the tab deaths and just watch for a few seconds.  Be sure to note the number of violent deaths and abortions.

The recent violent deaths of innocent children is appalling. I've listened to the interviews, news reports (speculations) and seen the social media chatter. The big question seems to be "Where is God"?  To that I want to shout - He lives in the hearts of His people who weep and mourn with you, are praying for you and we seek to comfort you in your suffering as the God of all comfort has comforted us.  I've listened as some say this horrible tragedy is a result of mental illness, because we've taken prayer and God out of our schools or because people are allowed to buy and carry guns. Or, it is simply because evil exists.  Did you know:

  • More than 5 children die every day as a result of child abuse. 1
  • 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse. 2
  • The U.S. is one of the top 3 destination countries for human trafficking activity. 3
  • Vice units across the country can often identify hundreds of underage girls on the streets who are compelled to be victims of child-rape-for-profit 10-15 times or more every night.  Vice estimates that many times that number are likely being advertised for sale online. 4

What in the world is going on?  Is evil winning?  On a regular basis, I have to stop and remind myself that there is no Happily Ever After in this world. Why would I say or suggest such a thing?  Well, would you agree that life in this world is filled with death, sorrow, pain, and suffering?  That's because the ruler of this world is the evil one - satan or the devil himself.  It's a hard truth to accept until the next person dies, or the next wave of sorrow, pain or suffering comes. Or deception. Jesus says the ruler of this world is a "murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and  the father of lies."  As a result of his lies and deception children continue to be his target:

  • Over 1 million babies will be murdered this year as a result of abortion.
  • 55 million plus to date. 
  • Just since you have been reading this?  If you stopped to look at the World Clock earlier, you might want to revisit it and note the number of abortions that occurred during the few short minutes it took to read the above. 

You can't regulate evil.  No matter how many rules, regulations or laws we put into place, they will never stop evil.  But take courage, Jesus has come to save us from the power of the evil one in our lives AND from the penalty our our sins.  And His Word  dispels the lies of the enemy.WOW!

So, when the world wants to know where God is, and wonder what in the world is going on?  We can proclaim - He is alive.  He lives inside you and me.  He lives in the hearts of His people!  Those who show love. mercy, forgiveness, compassion, generosity because we have received these from God through His Son - Jesus Christ.  Those who not only know the Word of God but live it out. In this world, we will have troubles, but take heart - Jesus has overcome the world.  Read Jesus' last words and prayer in John 16:32-17:25 and the important role you play in making a difference in this world!

Tuesday
Dec232008

Just because

I love the snow and Friday it snowed most of the day. Big beautiful flakes! At times it was snowing so hard you couldn't see very far into the distance at all. Although I was working most of the day, I took time to stop, look out and marvel. During these times, itwas almost as though I could hear God speaking into my heart: Look child, this snow came from My storehouses. This day, I have said to the snow - fall on the earth! (Job 37:6; 38:22). And, I could hear my own spirit responding: You are my Father God and only You alone can do such things. These are WOW moments. Times to marvel at His awesomeness, majesty, splendor, power and might. And, breathe in the TRUTH that God is my Father. He, the Almighty God, loves me. He planned for me, created me, saved me and even now is transforming me into the image of His Son, Jesus. Why? Ephesians 1:5 says that my Father God adopted me "according to the kind intention of His will." In other words, just because He wanted to! It's amazing.

Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the Lord, “Though your sins are as scarlet,They will be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They will be like wool."(Isaiah 1:18)

Wednesday
Nov262008

Happy Thanksgiving

My heart is full this morning. I have so many reasons to thank God. As I sit here and list them in my mind, the tears just flow! I don't really understand why God would so graciously choose to save me, change me and allow me to be a part of anything He wants to do. Or, why God would leave heaven, come to earth, confine Himself to a body of flesh, live as a human and be tempted and faced with all it means to live in a body of flesh, die a horrible, painful and humiliating death in order to pay my sin debt. It's more than I can get my human mind around. Why Jesus - God in flesh - would do all that for me so that I could have forgiveness of my sins and so that I would never, ever be separated from God the Father is beyond my human comprehension. Then, He puts His Holy Spirit within me and opens the eyes of my heart so that I might understand His Word, learn great and mighty things about Him. Oh my...it's a wonder. And, He begins changing my heart and sharing His heart with me. As He does, the desires of my heart change and this absolutely blows me away.

Oh, I know this is a national holiday. And, I am very thankful to be living in the United States of America. God chose not to make me a Bedouin woman but an American woman. I have so many freedoms. I am absolutely FREE to fulfill my purpose as stated in 1 Peter 2:9-10. It says: But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. As one who has received mercy, I have absolute freedom to proclaim His excellencies. At least for today. Our nation's thinking concerning God and His Word is very much different than it was on that first celebration of thanksgiving.

I am SO thankful for God's Word. The Bible contains the very words of God. Oh, this truth causes me to want to hug it and open it and breathe in the very essence of God Himself. He is the One that had them recorded and has preserved them through the ages. God created me and brought me into existence during a time when I can freely open His Word, read it in so many different translations, and have incredible study tools at my disposal that allow me to dig deep. The word "thankful" doesn't seem a big enough word to describe the emotion within me.

I am so thankful for all that God has done for me and given to me that I must stand with God and what He says in His Word. I must not only proclaim His excellencies, but I must proclaim His Word as absolute truth. If my thinking and my choices do not line up with His Word then that means my thinking and my choices line up with lies. Doesn't that makes me an enemy of God and a friend of the evil one who is the author of lies?

I am thrilled that I live in a time when it is has become possible for a black american to become President of the United States. But, I am deeply saddened that this man who identifies himself as a Christian stands and votes against absolute truth. I am further saddened that many Christians I know also stood against truth. I don't understand. What truths am I talking about? The truths that our President Elect and majority of Americans:
-Do not support the federal defense of marriage act (traditional marriage between one man and one woman).
-Support cloning
-Support cirriculum that promotes homosexuality
-Support abortion
-Do not support the protecting of lives of children when are born alive and survive a botched abortion
-Support laws enforcing businesses to favor homosexuality
-Support gay pride celebrations
-Support transporting minor girls across state lines for a secret abortion without parental knowledge
-Support partial birth abortions
-Do not support traditional marriage in states

Do you think God's heart breaks? Am I willing to allow God to break my heart with the things that break His heart? Your stand and my stand for absolute truth could be costly. But, we must remember that we are not our own - we have been bought with a price. That price cost Jesus His life and bought our freedom from the penalty of sin, the power of sin and some day from the presence of sin. Do you stand on the absolute truth of God's Word with me?

Sunday
Nov232008

You can't fix me!

Pastor Tim had another great sermon this morning. He reminded us using Ecclesiastes 4:7-12 of just how much we need brothers and sisters in Christ and yet how often we close our hearts to others. His point was, if we are going to live this Christian life, we need each other. Otherwise when we fall, who will be there to help and lift us up? Well, I'm prone to fall and I wonder: don't you get tired of helping me get up? Seriously - the real me....the me God sees - can you really handle that me? Don't you want to judge me, reject me, preach at me and try and "fix me?" No, you help and lift me up.

Some days life just hurts and all I want is to hear your voice and have you put your arms around me, listen to me and just be there with me. Some days the situations and circumstances of life are overwhelming. It doesn't mean I've gone spiritually brain dead and don't know God's perspective on my situations and circumstances. It doesn't mean that I'm not clinging to the promises of God or unable to speak those promises back to myself. It just means I need to release the raw emotions of living life in this world. You don't try and "fix me." You just help me and lift me up.

Still there are other days, when I actually do go spritiually brain dead. When truth seems to escape me and I'm spiritually confused and cannot seem to think straight. It's then I need my friend who knows me well - knows who I want to be and loves me enough to tell me in (a VERY gracious and loving way) that my behavior doesn't line up with who I say I am and who I want to be. The key here is "knows me well and loves me enough." Ah, that means I had to have opened my heart to someone, allowed them to get to know me - all aspects of me! It means I took a chance they may be appalled at what they saw and reject me rather than love me! Scary isn't it? Well, not when you consider the alternative. Living life alone. I say we take 100 chances and we keep opening our hearts, sharing our hearts until we find those precious ones who know us well and love us enough. Brothers and sisters who will help and lift us up so we can live and walk in a manner worthy of our Lord.

For all the times I've fallen....for all the times I've exposed my wretched heart - thank you for not trying to "fix me!" Thank you for helping me up and for graciously and lovingly reminding me of truth when I've gone spiritually brain dead. Thank you for lifting me up in such a way as to restore me so that I can walk in a manner worthy of my Lord. Thank you for investing in my life in such a way that I am known and well loved by you. You know exactly who you are and you are a gift from God to me.

Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up. Furthermore, if two lie down together they keep warm, but how can one be warm alone? And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart. Ecclesiastes 4:9-12