Dec 31, 2009
Have you claimed your royal heritage?
Dec 31, 2009
Have you claimed your royal heritage?
He who believes in Me . . . out of his heart will flow . . . —John 7:38
Jesus did not say, “He who believes in Me will realize all the blessings of the fullness of God,” but, in essence, “He who believes in Me will have everything he receives escape out of him.” Our Lord’s teaching was always anti-self-realization. His purpose is not the development of a person— His purpose is to make a person exactly like Himself, and the Son of God is characterized by self-expenditure. If we believe in Jesus, it is not what we gain but what He pours through us that really counts. God’s purpose is not simply to make us beautiful, plump grapes, but to make us grapes so that He may squeeze the sweetness out of us. Our spiritual life cannot be measured by success as the world measures it, but only by what God pours through us— and we cannot measure that at all.
When Mary of Bethany “broke the flask . . . of very costly oil . . . and poured it on [Jesus’] head,” it was an act for which no one else saw any special occasion; in fact, “. . . there were some who . . . said, ’Why was this fragrant oil wasted?’ ” (Mark 14:3-4). But Jesus commended Mary for her extravagant act of devotion, and said, “. . . wherever this gospel is preached . . . what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her” (Mark 14:9). Our Lord is filled with overflowing joy whenever He sees any of us doing what Mary did— not being bound by a particular set of rules, but being totally surrendered to Him. God poured out the life of His Son “that the world through Him might be saved” (John 3:17). Are we prepared to pour out our lives for Him?
“He who believes in Me . . . out of his heart will flow rivers of living water”— and hundreds of other lives will be continually refreshed. Now is the time for us to break “the flask” of our lives, to stop seeking our own satisfaction, and to pour out our lives before Him. Our Lord is asking who of us will do it for Him?
by Oswald Chambers
The first chapter of Matthew lists the lineage of Jesus Christ: 42 generations starting with the miracle child born to Abraham and ending with the miracle of deity assuming human form. In between are the names of a schemer, a prostitute, a murderer, kings, and former idol worshippers. These men and women had their lives transformed by God and, by His supernatural workings, were given a place in the ancestry of our Savior. God protected this line despite deceit, betrayal, war, captivity, and assimilation.
It is this same God who promises us eternal life through Jesus Christ. The Bible recounts promise after promise from God, and 2 Corinthians 1:20 reassures us that they are all “yes” in Christ. We who are born again through faith in Jesus are given a permanent place in God’s family, which is guaranteed by both the Father and the Son (John 10:28-29). The Holy Spirit is given to us as a seal of the pledge, ensuring that we will receive our eternal inheritance as children of God (2 Cor. 1:21-22).
For the guarantee of eternal life to take effect, there is but a single requirement—that we enter into a personal relationship with Christ. The Lord Himself registers our name in the Lamb’s book of life (Rev. 21:27). There are no additional specifications to meet for the guarantee to be in effect, and it remains in place forever. Eternal life belongs to us the instant we become children of God. The Lord has promised, and we can count on it. Hallelujah!
“And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.” (1 Corinthians 15:49)
One of the most amazing promises of the Word of God is that those who “love God” and are “the called according to his purpose” are those whom “he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son” (Romans 8:28-29).
Adam and Eve were created in His image physically in the beginning. “So God created man in his own image . . . male and female created he them” (Genesis 1:27). Presumably this means they were created in the physical form that God knew He would assume when, in the fullness of time, He would become man Himself, in the person of His Son, Jesus Christ.
That image was marred when Adam (and, in Adam, all men) sinned. Nevertheless, it can be restored spiritually when we receive Christ and “have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him” (Colossians 3:10).
But this is not all. As our text reveals, we who have been made in God’s earthly image (both physically and spiritually) will also, in due time, receive His heavenly image. This will take place when Christ returns. At that time, “we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye . . . and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” (1 Corinthians 15:51-52).
In what way shall we be changed? The Lord Jesus Himself “shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body” (Philippians 3:21). His body, after His resurrection, was still His physical body, but it was no longer subject to pain or death and was able to pass through walls and to speed rapidly from Earth to heaven. That is “the image of the heavenly” to which we shall be conformed some day soon! For “we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:2). HMM
Thus saith the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich
man glory in his riches: but let him that glorieth glory in this, that he under-standeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord
which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth; for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.— Jeremiah 9:23, 24.
WHAT dost thou fear?
His wisdom reigns Supreme confessed;
His power is infinite; His love
Thy deepest, fondest dreams above—
So trust and rest.
ADELAIDE A. PROCTER.
THE firm belief of, and resting on, His power and wisdom, and love, gives a clear, satisfying answer to all doubts and fears. It suffers us not to stand to jangle with each trifling, grumbling objection, but carries all before it, makes day in the soul, and so chases away those fears that vex us only in the dark. ROBERT LEIGHTON.
I feel that goodness, and truth, and righteousness are realities, eternal realities, and that they cannot be abstractions, or vapors floating in a spiritual atmosphere, but that they necessarily imply a living, personal Will, a good, loving, righteous God, in whose hands we are perfectly safe, and who is guiding us by unfailing wisdom.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures. Psalm 23:2
The wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest. There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.
Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. — Rest in the LORD. — He that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works.
Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace. — That … we be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ.
I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste. He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.
Isaiah 57:20,21. Matthew 11:28. Psalm 37:7. Hebrews 4:10. Hebrews 13:9. Ephesians 4:14,15. Song of Songs 2:3,4.
Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart. Psalm 27:14
Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. — Fear thou not; for I am
with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. — Thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in distress, a refuge from the storm,
a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.
The trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. — Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.
Isaiah 40:28,29. Isaiah 41:10. Isaiah 25:4. James 1:3,4. Hebrews 10:35,36.