Monthly Archives: April 2015

Answer To Previous Post Plus The More Important Question

OK.  I can’t wait any longer, because the suspense is killing me (and I hope you, too!).  What was your answer?  Did you answer that the man became a millionaire when he realized he had money in the bank?  Or, did you answer that he became a millionaire when the money was deposited?  If you answered when the money was deposited you are correct!  Congratulations!

Now, to the more important question.  Ready?

When is a person free from sin (declared righteous in Christ and no longer guilty of sin)?  When Jesus died on the cross and paid the penalty for sin (which by the way was death, not eternal conscious torment in hell!) or when he/she, by faith, believes in Christ for justification/redemption?

I will let you chew on this for a few days and maybe on Sunday I can find some time to finish this out.  Do you agree that this is one of the most important questions for us to know the answer to?  What are the ramifications of the answer to this question?  Leave your comments below and help all the readers to gain insight from your wisdom!  Blessings to you!

In Christ’s love,

Craig

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Filed under Justification

Short Question Of Utmost Importance!

Real quick – I read an example today that I must share and hopefully you will share your insights in the comments below. Here goes:

One day a man’s bank account number was found by a person who then proceeded to deposit 50 million dollars in it.  This donor knew the person’s name but did not call the man to tell him about the deposit.  The man continued living his life, struggling to pay his bills and stressing over his future, yet apparently, because of his poverty, did not bother to check his account balance (bear with me, OK!).  Then one day the donor sent him a letter instructing him to check his balance in his bank account. The man did, and his life was changed.

Question: When did this man become a millionaire?

Now for the hook.  I will post again in a few days with another story that YOU WILL NOT WANT TO MISS!  So, stay tuned!  How was that for promotion?

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A quick note about WWJD from a previous post

In this post (New Creation Christians Should Never Ask What Jesus Would Do) I mentioned that we Christians today should not ask what would Jesus do because that keeps us focused on our mortal bodies and repressing sin.  I wanted to spend a few minutes explaining a little more what I mean.

What was/were the main things that Jesus came to do?  Well, let me mention the most important first:  He came to seek and save the lost, to save all mankind.  OK, now with that said, how did He go about doing that?  Well, He fought sin, and death, and the Devil.  His fight with sin seemed to be primarily against the Jewish religious leaders.  He was constantly pointing out their hypocrisy and sin.  that did not endear Him to them and led Him actually to the cross.  He also fought against death.  He didn’t fight dying on the cross, but He fought death and won, for God, and for our benefit.  He fought Satan, as well, and conquered Him by paying sin’s debt (by dying a real death so we would no longer die spiritually) and becoming alive once again, rendering death for all no longer a thing to be feared, but welcomed.  That people no longer die spiritually and will eventually live with God eternally is quite a feat.  Yet in god’s infinite love, showing the power of His love, He resurrected the Son and made an embarrassment out of Satan and gave all mankind what He created them for before the foundation of the world; fellowship with Him.

We no longer need to emulate Christ in these areas because they have been taken  care of forever by Christ.  Sin is vanquished and no longer the focus of the Christian’s life, Christ is. So if we must cling to the modern abbreviation of WWJD, at least make it mean something true and define it by extending His love to others, not trying to always crucify the flesh (that’s a done deal already!)  Death, the penalty for sin, is paid.  END OF THE STORY.  There is therefore now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus.  All those who aren’t, will face a time of painful restoration to Him, but their end is as sure as those who believe in this life!  AMEN!  Hallelujah!  And, maybe best of all because it shows how strong and deep and unfailing God’s love is toward ALL created beings, Satan will one day bow in adoration and praise for the God who will one day redeem even him!  Can you think of any greater love than this?  Can you imagine a being so powerful in His love that even the tempter will succumb and his heart will be made new again and he will be with us praising the one True God?

If you want to Do as Jesus Did, remember those people He loved and touched in miraculous ways, like the lame, the adulterers, the sick, etc.  When you are thinking along those lines you will have very little, if any, time to focus on your stumblings!  Christ and the Father’s love to you all!

Craig

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Filed under God's Love

Don’t Let Sin Reign in Your Mortal Body

Here is my provocative question for this post.  When you read what Paul wrote in Romans 6:12, “Let not Sin, then, be reigning in your mortal body, for you to be obeying its lusts.” (CLV, Concordant Literal Version), do you:

A. Believe this to mean “stop sinning” and refers to the “acts of sin” OR

B.  I will never stop sinning in my mortal body but thankfully as a new creation in Christ my sins have been removed and sin no longer tells me what to do, I tell it what to do! (get lost!)

If you choose A., then you are in league with the whole modern church today.  You believe just as most every other believer today because you believe that Paul is telling you to quit committing acts of sin, like adultery, swearing, lying, cheating, stealing, etc.  It also means you will probably seek to remove all appearances of evil and sin from your life.  Example:  We don’t believe it is a sin to drink alcohol, but we require our leaders to abstain from drinking alcohol because we do not even want to give the appearance of sin, or cause even the least of our brothers to stumble.  Or, I have been “saved” by God and in my past have struggled with pornography, therefore, when I want to rent a movie from Netflix, I search only G-rated movies because I do not even want to be tempted to sin.  Or, I know overeating is a sin, but I have a lust for pizza so, as a believer, I will never go down the pizza aisle at the grocery store, nor will I go to parties where pizza is being served.

If you chose B., you look back at my last paragraph and say, “Wow, I am glad I am not like those sinners over there!”  No, I am only kidding!  But seriously, you probably realize that Paul’s whole case in Romans is not some theological treatise for the seminary classroom, nor for the making of super saints!  It is for everyone, saved and unsaved alike.  It is especially for believers who understand that they will never be NOT sinning in this mortal body but thankfully Jesus paid it all, paid for every sin, past, present, and future, on the cross and in his resurrection.  You realize that you are not defined by your sin but by your identity with and in Christ.  When you realize you sin, and you realize it is an anomaly, that because you treasure His grace, you stop and say, “No more,” and you continue on reveling in the grace that super-exceeds the sin you just committed.  Then, rather than being sad over your sin, and letting sin ruin your disposition, you push it aside and focus on the grace of Christ, His ever and over-abundant love for ALL OF HIS CREATION, and go about praising Him the rest of the day!

Which kind of person are you?  Which kind of person do you want to be?  Think about it!  Send me your comments and let’s dialog about it.  Questions?  Me, too.  Let’s help one another find answers! As always,

Love in Christ,

Craig

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Filed under God's Love, Grace, Mercy, truth, Understanding the Bible, Universal salvation