VIDEO Identified or Simply Interested – Crucified With Christ

Identified or Simply Interested?

Identified or Simply Interested?

I have been crucified with Christ… —Galatians 2:20

The inescapable spiritual need each of us has is the need to sign the death certificate of our sin nature. I must take my emotional opinions and intellectual beliefs and be willing to turn them into a moral verdict against the nature of sin; that is, against any claim I have to my right to myself. Paul said, “I have been crucified with Christ….” He did not say, “I have made a determination to imitate Jesus Christ,” or, “I will really make an effort to follow Him” —but— “I have been identifiedwith Him in His death.” Once I reach this moral decision and act on it, all that Christ accomplished for me on the Cross is accomplished in me. My unrestrained commitment of myself to God gives the Holy Spirit the opportunity to grant to me the holiness of Jesus Christ.

“…it is no longer I who live….” My individuality remains, but my primary motivation for living and the nature that rules me are radically changed. I have the same human body, but the old satanic right to myself has been destroyed.

“…and the life which I now live in the flesh,” not the life which I long to live or even pray that I live, but the life I now live in my mortal flesh— the life which others can see, “I live by faith in the Son of God….” This faith was not Paul’s own faith in Jesus Christ, but the faith the Son God had given to him (see Ephesians 2:8). It is no longer a faith in faith, but a faith that transcends all imaginable limits— a faith that comes only from the Son of God.

WISDOM FROM OSWALD CHAMBERS

The great word of Jesus to His disciples is Abandon. When God has brought us into the relationship of disciples, we have to venture on His word; trust entirely to Him and watch that when He brings us to the venture, we take it.  Studies in the Sermon on the Mount, 1459 R


Crucified With Christ – Phillips Craig and Dean

Faster or Better?

So He commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground. And He took the seven loaves and gave thanks, broke them and gave them to His disciples to set before them; and they set them before the multitude. Mark 8:6

 

It’s faster for a parent to pick up a toddler’s toys than to watch and encourage the child to do it. But which is more educational, edifying, bonding, and discipline-promoting for the child? Obviously, to have the child (or help the child) pick up the toys. There is more to a task than the task itself.

Which raises the question: Why doesn’t God just blanket the world with the Gospel message all at once? Why has He chosen to use fallible, fickle, often-faithless humans to “help” Him in this eternally significant task? Why did Jesus use the disciples to help Him feed the multitudes? For the same reason parents work with their children instead of doing things more quickly themselves. In our case, God’s goal is to conform us to the image of Jesus Christ (Romans 8:29). Just as the Father worked with the Son, so the Son works with us (John 20:21).

Enjoy the blessing of doing kingdom work with Jesus. By the power of the Spirit, He uses us to be His hands and heart in the world.

Jesus Christ didn’t commit the Gospel to an advertising agency; He commissioned disciples.  Joseph Bayly

The Search of Wholeness

John 4:7-30

Take an honest look at your life. Do you feel whole and complete, or is there the sense that something’s missing? If you’re aware of an emptiness, what are you using to try and fill that void? Is it relationships with family and friends? Or have you opted for achievements, hoping they will bring a sense of significance? Maybe you use a substance or activity of some kind to deaden the ache or provide temporary comfort.

Jesus met a woman with just such an empty place in her soul. She was longing for a healthy relationship but had been repeatedly rejected. In those days, a man could divorce his wife simply because she displeased him in some way. The Samaritan woman had gone through this rejection five times and was now seeking to fill her soul with a man who wasn’t her husband.

She probably tried to cover up her hurt so those nearby wouldn’t notice, but when Jesus met her at the well and told all that she had done, her days of hiding were over. She had finally found the One who could bring wholeness to her life. Before you can fill the emptiness in your soul, you must likewise let Christ’s piercing gaze penetrate into the depths of your heart and reveal the root cause of your incompleteness.

We were created for God. All other pursuits are inadequate substitutes and will never bring the lasting satisfaction we are seeking. Life has a way of beating us down, leaving us depleted and disillusioned. But when we allow Jesus Christ unrestricted access to our hearts, He fills us up with His unfailing love.

The King of Kings and Lord of Lords

“These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.” (Revelation 17:14)

There is coming a time—perhaps not too far in the future—when all the kings and other rulers of the world will “have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast” (v. 13), the great humanistic world system of the last days, whose Satan-possessed leader will then have power “given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations” (13:7).

Only one opponent will remain, the Lamb of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, against whom “the kings of the earth . . . take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us” (Psalm 2:2-3).

So they will proceed to “make war with the Lamb,” but they will lose! At the final “appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ . . . he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords” (1 Timothy 6:14-15). He, who as God’s sacrificial Lamb has taken “away the sin of the world” (John 1:29), is greater than all kings and rulers.

No longer as the submissive Lamb before His shearers (Isaiah 53:7), but as the “Word of God,” out of whose once-silent mouth now “goeth a sharp sword” with which He shall “smite the nations.” He will have “on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, King Of Kings, And Lord Of Lords” (Revelation 19:13, 15-16).

Indeed, the kings and leaders of the whole world will think they can successfully “make war with the Lamb,” but He “shall overcome them.” In that great day that is coming, it will be far better to be with Him than with them! HMM

Who may abide the day of His coming

Malachi 3:1-12

Malachi signifies messenger, or angel. His office it was to hand over the prophetic charge into the hand of another messenger, who heralded the Lord, the Messiah himself, the Messenger of the Covenant. Malachi is the evening star of the Old Testament.

Malachi 3:1

Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: “There was a man sent from God, whose name was John:”

Malachi 3:1

Since the temple is destroyed in which Messiah was to come, it is quite certain that he has come. He came when few were looking for him, when only an aged man and a venerable woman were in the temple expecting his arrival.

Malachi 3:2, 3

Malachi saw the future Judge in the present Saviour. He saw that the people were not ready for the Messiah, and that his coming would be the severest trial to which Israel had been put, and would more terribly than ever reveal the false-heartedness of the people. He saw, with prophetic eye, the end as well as the beginning, and looked onward to those better days in which Israel will yet be holiness unto the Lord.

Malachi 3:4, 5

Jesus in the Gospel overthrows all forms of wickedness and oppression; he is the great reformer, the hope of all people.

Malachi 3:6

The Jewish nation has passed through the fire, but exists still, because the Lord does not change, and will not cast off his people.

Malachi 3:7-9

They were no longer idolaters, but they were mean in their gifts, and heartless in their worship; hence their woes.

Malachi 3:10-12

And I will rebuke the devourer or the locust

Malachi 3:10-12

How happy would it have been for the Jews had they listened to this encouraging admonition! They disregarded it, and perished. Let us take warning from their example. We cannot expect to prosper if we are dishonest to the Lord: he can easily enough measure back to us as we measure out to him; and if he sees us slack-handed in his service, he can soon send forth a devouring providence which will empty our purse, impoverish our trade, enfeeble our body, and sadden our spirits. Happy are they who, being saved by grace, bring him all their tithes, for peace and prosperity shall be. their portion.

 

O thou whom we delight in,

The messenger of love!

Come to thy temple quickly

Back from thy throne above:

But who may bide thy coming,

Who hear thy footstep’s tread,

Who stand when thou appearest,

Thou Judge of quick and dead?

 

Continue To Pour Yourself Out

How be it when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth. (John 16:13)

Science declares that nature abhors a vacuum. It should be happy knowledge to us, then, that the same principle is true in the kingdom of God—when you empty yourself, God Almighty rushes in!

The Creator God who fills the universe and overflows into immensity can never be surrounded by that little thing we call our brain, our mind, our intellect. Never can we rise to face God by what we are and by what we know! Only by love and faith are we lifted thus to know Him and adore Him!

What a happy hour it becomes when we are drawn out of ourselves, and into that vacuum rushes the blessed Presence.

How wonderful in our humanity to sense the reality of the Holy Spirit’s invitation: “Pour yourself out! Give yourself to Me! Empty yourself! Bring your empty earthen vessels! Come in meekness like a child!”

Drawn out of ourselves by the Holy Spirit of God—for who knows the things of God but the Holy Spirit?

We are delivered from ourselves when we finally seek God for Himself alone!

 

Avoid That Slip

“Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.” Prov. 3:23

That is to say, if we follow the ways of wisdom and holiness we shall be preserved in them. He who travels by daylight along the highway is under some protection. There is a way for every man, namely, his own proper calling in life, and if we devoutly walk therein in the fear of God He will preserve US from evil. We may not travel luxuriously, but we shall walk safely. We may not be able to run like young men, but we shall be able to walk like good men.

Our greatest danger lies in ourselves: our feeble foot is so sadly apt to stumble. Let us ask for more moral strength that our tendency to slip may be overcome. Some stumble because they do not see the stone in the way: divine grace enables us to perceive sin, and so to avoid it. Let us plead this promise, and trust in Him who upholds His chosen.

Alas! our worst peril is our own carelessness, but against this the Lord Jesus has put us on our guard, saying, “Watch and pray.

Oh for grace to walk this day without a single stumble! It is not enough that we do not actually fall; our cry should be that we may not make the smallest slip with our feet, but may at the last adore Him “who is able to keep us from stumbling.”

 

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