Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Quote: Jim Elliot, 12



~ Hell ~

Why Does God Send Men to Hell?

The following is an excerpt from a book.

Now, God can’t do anything else but send some men to hell. What would you have Him to do? Would you have Him pass over the whole thing, as soon as that man, after he’s lived his life of crookedness and passed sweetly into a coffin, comes before God? What would you have God do about it? Would you have God say, “Oh well, it’s all right. Forget it.” Well, God can’t do that. I mean, say that He would even like to. But don’t you see the problem, which to you is not just a theological problem, but also a practical one?

You now have a very real problem arising in your mind. The problem between justice and mercy. You’d like to see the man get off in a good thing. You’d like to see him, just because you’re a good fellow yourself, you’d like to see him get on by in eternity. But somehow, you say, it can’t be and really be just. There is mercy in you like there is in God, and there is justice in you like there is in God to a certain degree, and these things argue against one another.

What would you have God do? God’s got to do something with every man He has created because He just made men to live forever, that’s all. And as He does that, He also decides that He will give the ultimate Word to man, and that Word is given to us in the person of Jesus Christ. And Jesus Christ taught us that those kinds of men were going to hell along with lots of other people who didn’t want to really say they were crooked. They wanted to say, “Well, I really haven’t hurt anybody.” But they still live for themselves, they have not given themselves over to God. God demands obedience.

Jesus Christ taught us this much about heaven, that it was God’s throne. And until a man was subjected to the idea that God was on His throne in heaven, he wasn’t going to receive anything from God by way of real blessing.

~ from “JIM ELLIOT: A Christian Martyr Speaks to You, pgs 108-109  (ISBN: 9781615797646)
Learn more about this important book at Amazon, the Publisher, or the Author’s website.

~ Robert Lloyd Russell, ABUNDANT LIFE NOW

NOTES:
(1)     The current TOP 10 ALN posts are listed at the very bottom of this home page.
(2)     There is an INDEX of all ALN posts accessed by scrolling down the left column.
(3)     You may LINK to any ALN posts on your own blog or website. 
(4)     You may COPY any ALN post, but please credit ALN as the source by prominently displaying the following statement:  Reprinted from “Abundant Life Now,” a free blog which offers inspiring moments, thought-provoking comments, and solid Biblical insight at http://RobertLloydRussell.blogspot.com/ .

Monday, February 8, 2016

Identity in Christ, 58



~ I Am One Who Is Holy In God’s Eyes ~

Introduction  ~  When Christians understand the various characteristics and aspects of the birthright which came with their second birth, they comprehend their identity in Christ.  Once Christians understand their identity, their destiny is also clear!  This series of “Abundant Life Now” posts will look at one of those facets each week. 

This Week’s Verse  ~  “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved” (Ephesians 1:3-6).

~~~ EXPLANATORY “IDENTITY IN CHRIST” NOTES ~~~  
(1)  Each Monday ALN posts an example of Scripture’s description of aspects/characteristics of Christians—those who have personally trusted in Jesus Christ, The Messiah, as their personal Savior.
(2)  This series is not intended to be an exhaustive list.
(3)  God the Father described Himself to Moses as the great “I AM” (Exodus 3:14).  God the Son also said “I AM” (John 8:58). 
(4)  Jesus Christ is the Son of God and several times in the Gospel of John He refers to Himself as “I am.  I am the Bread of Life” (6:35-51), “I am the Light of the World” (8:12, 9:5), “I am the Door” (10:7-9), “I am the Good Shepherd” (10:11-14), “I am the Son of God” (10:36), “I am the Resurrection and the Life” (11:25), “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life” (14:6), “I am in the Father, and the Father in Me … Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me” (John 14:10-11), and “I am the True Vine” (15:1-5). 
(5)  Individual Christians are also sons and daughters of God.  This series will show some of the various “I am” aspects of a Christian. 

~ Robert Lloyd Russell, ABUNDANT LIFE NOW

NOTES:
(1)     The current TOP 10 ALN posts are listed at the very bottom of this home page.
(2)     There is an INDEX of all ALN posts accessed by scrolling down the left column.
(3)     You may LINK to any ALN posts on your own blog or website. 
(4)     You may COPY any ALN post, but please credit ALN as the source by prominently displaying the following statement:  Reprinted from “Abundant Life Now,” a free blog which offers inspiring moments, thought-provoking comments, and solid Biblical insight at http://RobertLloydRussell.blogspot.com/ .

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Christ in Zechariah



~ Jesus Christ Is Smitten Shepherd ~

The Bible is about Jesus Christ  ~  “Jesus said to them, ‘How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken!  Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter His glory?’  And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning Himself” (Luke 24:25-27).

Jesus Christ is found in the Book of Zechariah as our Fountain, as the Righteous Branch (3:8; 6:12; 6:13; 9:9; 12:10; 14:9), as Yahweh’s Servant, the King-Priest, the gentle King, and the Smitten Shepherd.  He is the One wounded in the house of His friends.  He is the fountain which opened up in the house of David for the cleansing of all forms of sin.

The Smitten Shepherd  ~  “‘Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, against the Man who is My Companion,’ says the Lord of hosts. ‘Strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered; then I will turn My hand against the little ones’” (Zechariah 13:7).  “Then Jesus said to them, ‘All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night, for it is written: “I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.”  But after I have been raised, I will go before you to Galilee’” (Matthew 26:31-32).  “Then Jesus said to them, ‘All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night, for it is written: “I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.”  But after I have been raised, I will go before you to Galilee’” (Mark 14:27-28).

The King—Priest  ~  In the time of Zechariah Joshua was the high priest.  Joshua’s root name in Greek can be translated in English as Jesus.  The names Joshua and Jesus include the meaning of “the Lord saves.”

Zechariah is commanded by our Lord to make a crown and put it on the head of Joshua—the priest.  This is significant since kings and priests were from separate tribes in that day (Judah and Levi respectively).  This fact provides insight to the following passage: “Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: ‘Receive the gift from the captives—from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah, who have come from Babylon—and go the same day and enter the house of Josiah the son of Zephaniah.  Take the silver and gold, make an elaborate crown, and set it on the head of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest.  Then speak to him, saying, “Thus says the Lord of hosts, saying: ‘Behold, the Man whose name is the BRANCH!  From His place He shall branch out, and He shall build the temple of the Lord; yes, He shall build the temple of the Lord.  He shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule on His throne; so He shall be a priest on His throne [both priest and king], and the counsel of peace shall be between them both.”’  Now the elaborate crown shall be for a memorial in the temple of the Lord for Helem, Tobijah, Jedaiah, and Hen the son of Zephaniah.  Even those from afar shall come and build the temple of the Lord.  Then you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me to you.  And this shall come to pass if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God” (Zechariah 6:9-15). 

The Gentle King  ~  Jesus Christ is described in the New Testament as the gentle and righteous King riding on a donkey.  “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!  Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem!  Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zechariah 9:9).  Now when they drew near Jerusalem, and came to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, ‘Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her.  Loose them and bring them to Me.  And if anyone says anything to you, you shall say, “The Lord has need of them,” and immediately he will send them.’  All this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying: Tell the daughter of Zion,Behold, your King is coming to you, lowly, and sitting on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey”’” (Matthew 21:1-5).  Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written: ‘Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming, sitting on a donkey's colt’” (John 12:14-15).

of particular note:  The first coming of The Messiah was in lowliness as noted above as “The Gentle King” (Zechariah 9:9).
The Messiah is the Prince of Peace (Zechariah 9:10).
The Messiah was crucified (Zechariah 12:10).
The Messiah was a Shepherd who was forsaken by His sheep as noted above “The Smitten Shepherd” (Zechariah 13:7).

Comment  ~  We have only touched the surface of Christ in Zechariah. 

additional comment:  Compare these passages from Scripture.
Zechariah 3:2 – Jude 9
Zechariah 8:8 – 2 Corinthians 6:16
Zechariah 8:16 – Ephesians 4:25
Zechariah 11:12 – Matthew 27:9
Zechariah 12:10 – John 19:37

The Apostle Paul told us the Scriptures present many shadows of things to come but the reality is found in Jesus Christ (Colossians 2:17).

~~~ EXPLANATORY “JESUS CHRIST IN EVERY BOOK OF THE BIBLE” SERIES ~~~   
(1)  Approximately once a month ALN posts an overview of how Jesus Christ is seen in a specific book of the Bible.
(2)  In most cases these posts only scratch the surface regarding Jesus Christ in the particular book.
(3)  These posts will typically be in the same order as the books are found in the Bible.
(4)  These serial posts are in addition to our other ALN postings.
(5)  Subscription to ABUNDANT LIFE NOW blog is simple—just use the link on the left sidebar.  Once subscribed you will not miss future posts.

~ Robert Lloyd Russell, ABUNDANT LIFE NOW

NOTES:
(1)     The current TOP 10 ALN posts are listed at the very bottom of this home page.
(2)     There is an INDEX of all ALN posts accessed by scrolling down the left column.
(3)     You may LINK to any ALN posts on your own blog or website. 
(4)     You may COPY any ALN post, but please credit ALN as the source by prominently displaying the following statement:  Reprinted from “Abundant Life Now,” a free blog which offers inspiring moments, thought-provoking comments, and solid Biblical insight at http://RobertLloydRussell.blogspot.com/ .