VIDEO I Believe, But I Didn’t Convert

Jewish Christian

The word ‘convert‘ in modern vernacular means to leave one’s religion for another. So when Jewish people hear you speak of converting from Judaism to Christianity, they hear you asking them to betray their heritage, religion and people. However the New Covenant writers and evangelists NEVER asked Jewish people to convert to a new religion, but to believe in the Messiah.

by Ron Cantor

http://barbwire.com/2015/03/06/1100-i-believe-but-i-didnt-convert/

Solving The Mystery

Stonehedge
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. —Romans 5:8

One of the most popular tourist attractions in England is the giant stone pillars of Stonehenge. These massive pieces of granite are also a great source of mystery. Every year, people travel to Stonehenge with questions such as: Why were they erected? Who accomplished this extraordinary engineering marvel? And perhaps we wonder most of all how they did it. But visitors leave having received no answers from the silent stones. The mystery remains.

The Scriptures speak of a greater mystery—the fact that God came to live among us as a man. Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 3:16, “Great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up in glory.”

This brief overview of the life of Christ—the mystery of godliness—is remarkable. What prompted the Creator of the universe to come and live and die for His creation, however, is not a mystery. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). God’s great love for us is at the root of the mystery of godliness, and the cross has made it plain for all to see. By Bill Crowder

An inclusio is a writing device where an idea or word is repeated at the beginning and end of a passage, but the idea in the middle is the author’s primary focus. In today’s passage, an inclusio is formed with the word “rejoice” (vv. 2,11). The emphasis is directly in the middle of the passage in verse 6: “Christ died for the ungodly.”

Lord, we may not understand everything You have done for us, or how You have done it. But we know You love us and sent Jesus to die for us, and that is all we need to know.

How Christ became a human being may be a mystery, but God’s love isn’t.

Willing to Wait for God’s Way

Lamentations 3:24-26

Many Christians struggle to discipline themselves in the area of self-gratification. There are so many things we want right now. And to make matters worse, we usually have the ability to follow through on our desires. That’s what the credit card industry is all about: Have it now; pay later.

But finances aren’t the only area where we get into trouble. Some people are in a hurry to be married and therefore make an unwise choice regarding a mate. Others don’t even see marriage as necessary and opt for premarital sex instead of waiting for the right person. Then there are those who are just in a hurry to become successful and well-respected in their career, never giving any thought to whether the pursuit aligns with God’s plans for them.

One reason the Lord wants us to wait is to protect us from our own self-destructive ways. Those who can’t say no to their own desires end up enslaved by them. God wants us to be mature believers with the character and self-restraint to wait for His provision in His perfect time. Because the heavenly Father is omniscient, He alone knows what’s best. You can trust that if He asks you to wait, He has something more wonderful in mind than you could ever provide for yourself.

Does anything seem to have power over you? If so, it may be an area that requires the practice of self-restraint. Yield to the Lord and submit your desires to Him. Then begin saying no to temptations as you wait for God to reveal His will for your life.

Holidays

“Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days.” (Colossians 2:16)

This is the only verse in the New Testament that has any reference to holidays (at one time considered “holy days”). However, the Greek word so translated does occur there quite often, being rendered elsewhere always by its correct meaning of “feasts.”

Such “holy days” in the Old Testament economy normally required “no servile work” to be done on those days and were usually associated with a special “feast” of some deep spiritual significance. They certainly were not holidays in the modern sense, devoted mostly to pleasure.

In fact, it is perhaps significant that neither holidays nor vacations are mentioned in the Bible at all. The weekly Sabbath “rest” day is, of course, frequently emphasized. One day in seven has always been observed as a day to rest from labor and to remember our Creator. However, the other six days were to be spent working. Many can still remember when the norm was a six-day work week.

Not so now. Many complain about even a five-day week, and “T.G.I.F.” is a common feeling as the “weekend” approaches. “Labor” Day is now a day mainly for fun, but it might be a good day for Christians to thank God for the privilege of work and doing that work “heartily, as to the Lord” (Colossians 3:23). Our work, whatever it may be, can become a real testimony for (or, sadly, against) the Lord whom we profess to serve.

In the ages to come, there will still be work to do for the Lord. In that day, it is promised that “his servants shall serve him” (Revelation 22:3). Therefore, we should be “abounding in the work of the Lord” right now. It will not be “in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58). HMM

A Good Husbandman

Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me be—fore the foundation of the world. —John 17:24

I believe that a pastor who is content with a vineyard that is not at its best is not a good husbandman. It is my prayer that we may be a healthy and fruitful vineyard and that we may be an honor to the Well Beloved, Jesus Christ the Lord, that He might go before the Father and say, “These are mine for whom I pray, and they have heard the Word and have believed on Me.” I pray that we might fit into the high priestly prayer of John 17, that we would be a church after Christ’s own heart so that in us He might see the travail of His soul and be satisfied….

The church should be a healthy, fruitful vineyard that will bring honor to Christ, a church after Christ’s own heart where He can look at the travail of His soul and be satisfied.

Lord, I long that Jesus Christ might indeed be satisfied with my own life and the lives of those whom He has called me to lead. Help me to be a faithful husbandman in whatever vineyard You place me. Amen.

You Will Find Christ Everywhere in the Bible

…To us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things…. 1 Corinthians 8:6

I do not mind telling you that I have always found Jesus Christ beckoning to me throughout the Scriptures. I am convinced that it was God’s design that we should find the divine Creator, Redeemer and Lord whenever we search the Scriptures.

The Son of God is described by almost every fair and worthy name in the creation. He is called the Sun of Righteousness with healing in His wings. He is called the Star that shone on Jacob. He is described as coming forth with His bride, clear as the moon. His Presence is likened unto the rain coming down upon the earth, bringing beauty and fruitfulness. He is pictured as the great sea and as the towering rock. He is likened to the strong cedars. A figure is used of Him as of a great eagle, going literally over the earth.

Where the person of Jesus Christ does not stand out tall and beautiful and commanding, as a pine tree against the sky, you will find Him behind the lattice, but stretching forth His hand. If He does not appear as the sun shining in his strength, He may be discerned in the reviving by the promised gentle rains.

Our Lord Jesus Christ was that One divinely commissioned to set forth the mystery and the majesty and the wonder and the glory of the Godhead throughout the universe. It is more than an accident that both the Old and New Testaments comb heaven and earth for figures of speech or simile to set forth the wonder and glory of God!

The Gospel Warning

As he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled. ACTS 24:25

We who rejoice in the blessings that have come to us through the Savior need to bear in mind that the gospel is not good news only!

The message of the cross is good news indeed for the penitent, but to those who obey not the gospel, it carries an overtone of warning.

The Spirit’s ministry to the impenitent world is to tell of sin and righteousness and judgment. For sinners who want to cease being willful sinners and become obedient children of God, the gospel message is one of unqualified peace, but it is by its very nature also an arbiter of the future destinies of man.

Actually, the message of the gospel may be received in either of two ways: in word only without power, or in word with power.

The truth received in power shifts the bases of life from Adam to Christ—a new and different Spirit enters the personality and makes the believing man new in every department of his being!

Loving Father, thank You that You are a patient and loving God. I pray again for those in my community and around the world who do not know You. Will Your Spirit convict many of them today?