VIDEO Well Versed – The Truth Will Set You Free

Well Versed

You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32

When you change news channels, you change worldviews. Journalism is now so opinionated that the same story, reported by two different broadcasters, sounds like totally different events. We switch stations and ask, “Are these people on the same planet? What happened to objective news? How do we know what to believe?”

As you form your opinions, make sure to build your worldview on the basis of Scripture. In John’s Gospel, Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (14:6). He called the Holy Spirit the “Spirit of truth” (14:17). He prayed to the Father, “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth” (17:17).

Those who study their Bibles every day, who memorize God’s Word, who meditate on His precepts, and who accept the authority of Scripture are less likely to be deceived. They are like treasury agents who can detect a counterfeit bill because they are well-versed in the genuine article. When surrounded by half-truths and lies, we can feel confused, but the solution isn’t giving up. We must give the situation to God and seek His truth.

Jesus Christ Himself is the final exegesis of all truth. He is all that we need to know about God, and He is all that we need to know about man. Major Ian Thomas


John Piper sermon: The Truth Will Set You Free

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Better Than Ever

Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Psalm 51:12

The story is told of a group of salmon fishermen who gathered in a Scottish inn after a long day of fishing. As one was describing a catch to his friends, his arm swept across the table and knocked a glass against the wall, shattering it and leaving a stain on the white plaster surface. The man apologized to the innkeeper and offered to pay for the damage, but there was nothing he could do; the wall was ruined. A man seated nearby said, “Don’t worry.” Rising, he took a painting implement from his pocket and began to sketch around the ugly stain. Slowly there emerged the head of a magnificent stag. The man was Sir E. H. Landseer, Scotland’s foremost animal artist.

David, Israel’s illustrious king who penned Psalm 51, brought shame on himself and his nation by his sins. He committed adultery with the wife of one of his friends and engineered the death of that friend—both deeds worthy of death. It would seem his life was ruined. But he pled with God: “Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me” (v. 12).

Like David we have shameful acts in our past and the memories that accompany them, recollections that taunt us in the middle of the night. There’s so much we wish we could undo or redo.

There is a grace that not only forgives sin but also uses it to make us better than before. God wastes nothing.

Lord, I’ve failed You again. Please forgive me again. Change me. Turn me around. Teach me to follow Your ways.

God has both an all-seeing eye and all-forgiving heart.

By David H. Roper 

INSIGHT

David wrote Psalm 51 in repentance for his sin of adultery with Bathsheba; his deliberate actions that led to the death of her husband, Uriah; and ultimately his sin against God (v. 4). Psalm 32, also penned by David, is similar in that here too he writes from his own experience on the pain of unconfessed sin and of the blessing of repentance. Even as Christians we will sin—and sometimes again and again. At such times, if we stubbornly refuse to confess our sins, we feel the effects of the sin eating away at us spiritually, mentally, and physically (vv. 3–4). Why? Not because we’ve lost our salvation, but because we’ve driven a wedge between us and our holy God. When we come to God in sorrow for our sins and receive His forgiveness, the “joy of [our] salvation”—the joy of being in an intimate relationship with God—is restored (51:12; see 32:1–2). In both psalms, David illustrates that confession and repentance lead to God’s forgiveness, which leads to a restored relationship, which leads to great joy—and enables us to sing! (32:11).

When have you experienced restored joy after confession?

Alyson Kieda

Turning Doubts Into Assurance

1 Timothy 2:1-6

One Sunday morning several years ago, a lady made her way down the church aisle when I invited people to come and receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. As we talked, she explained that she became a Christian as a young girl but never felt certain she was saved because she was still struggling with sin. Her story of doubt is common, but according to God’s Word, believers can be sure of their salvation.

God desires all people to be rescued from a future in hell so they can spend eternity with Him (1 Tim. 2:4). That’s why He designed a plan for our salvation. Since the penalty we owe for our sins is death and eternal separation from God the Father, He sent His Son to bear our sins and die in our place. Jesus took our punishment so we could be rescued (1 Peter 2:24). And this amazing, undeserved gift is offered to us by faith.

If we believe in Jesus Christ and trust in His death on our behalf, God forgives all our sins—past, present, and future. This is the only way we can be saved, because none of our good works can offset our sin debt. In fact, the opposite is true. Paul said salvation is “not as a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Eph. 2:9).

All of the glory for this wonderful plan of redemption belongs to the heavenly Father. He’s a loving God who not only wants us to be saved but has also made a way for it to happen—by sending His Son to die for our sin. He promised that if we believe, then salvation is ours. The child of God does not have to be burdened by doubt.

 

Want Reconciliation?

“For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” (Romans 5:10) 

It is interesting to note that as important as is the doctrine of the atonement in Christian theology, the word itself occurs only once in the King James New Testament. It is in the very next verse after our text. “And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement” (v. 11).

The Greek word is translated “reconciliation” in 2 Corinthians 5:18: “All things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation.” Thus, the doctrine of atonement is the doctrine of reconciliation. Men are separated from our holy God both by their sin nature and also by their actual guilt of committed sin. But through the substitutionary death of Christ for our sins, “we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son.” That is, God has already reconciled sinners to Himself by the sacrificial death of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. The problem is that sinners are not actually reconciled to God until they personally accept this free gift of God’s love to them.

But we who “have now received the atonement [that is, reconciliation] . . . joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:11). A part of that joy should be in the fact that God has now “given unto us the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:19). Thus, it has become our great privilege to tell others that they can be completely forgiven and eternally saved. “Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him” (2 Corinthians 5:20-21). HMM

Why dost thou judge thy brother?

Romans 14

Romans 14:1

Receive the weak but sincere believer into fellowship, but do not at once commence discussing knotty points with him, or quarrel with him upon matters of no importance.

Romans 14:4

Matters of meat and drink are to be left to Christian liberty, and no one has any right to dictate to another how he shall act. It is, however, a good rule—”in all cases of doubt be sure to take the surer side.”

Romans 14:5

Some kept the Jewish festivals and some did not.

Romans 14:7

No true Christian lives to himself, and therefore as he lives to God we have no right to judge his course of action.

Romans 14:8, 9

The very design of our Lord’s work is to make us live unto him and not as the servants of our fellow men; we are therefore very wrong when we attempt to make our brethren the servants of our opinions and ideas. Let us leave them to serve the Lord as their consciences teach them.

Romans 14:14

We must not violate our conscience. We may not do what we believe to be wrong because we see others do it. We must neither judge them nor excuse ourselves.

Romans 14:15

You have liberty to do as you please, but do not use that liberty if it would be mischievous to your brother in Christ. If your action, though right in itself, would have a tendency to destroy his soul, deny yourself for love’s sake.

Romans 14:22

Do you feel quite sure upon such matters?

Romans 14:22

Keep it within thine own bosom, but do not worry others with it.

Romans 14:23

And he that doubteth is damned or rather condemned

Romans 14:23

If you are not sure that a thing is right, let it alone, for it will be sin to you.

 

Yes, The Winsome Saints

Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:11)

Much of Christianity overlooks the fact that if we are led by the Spirit of God and if we show forth the love of God this world needs, we become the “winsome saints.”

The strange and wonderful thing about it is that truly winsome and loving saints do not even know about their attractiveness. The great saints of the past did not know they were great saints. If someone had told them, they would not have believed it, but those around then knew that Jesus was living His life in them.

I think we join the winsome saints when God’s purposes in Christ become clear to us. We join them when we begin to worship God because He is who He is! Brethren, God is not a charity case—He is not some frustrated foreman who cannot find enough help.

Let us remember that God has never actually needed any of us—not one! But we pretend that He does and we make a big thing of it when someone agrees “to work for the Lord.”

God is trying to call us back to that for which He created us—to worship and to enjoy Him forever!

 

At God’s Bidding

“And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people as a dew from the Lord, as the showers upon the grass, that tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men.” Micah 5:7

If this be true of the literal Israel, much more is it true of the spiritual Israel, the believing people of God. When saints are what they should be, they are an incalculable blessing to those among whom they are scattered.

They are as the dew; for in a quiet, unobtrusive manner they refresh those around them. Silently but effectually they minister to the life, growth, and joy of those who dwell with them. Coming fresh from Heaven, glistening like diamonds in the sun, gracious men and women attend to the feeble and insignificant till each blade of grass has its own drop of dew. Little as individuals, they are, when united, all-sufficient for the purposes of love which the Lord fulfills through them. Dewdrops accomplish the refreshing of broad acres. Lord, make us like the dew!

Godly people are as showers which come at God’s bidding without man’s leave and license. They work for God whether men desire it or not; they no more ask human permission than the rain does. Lord, make us thus boldly prompt, and free in thy service wherever our lot is cast.

 

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