Tuesday, January 26, 2010

7 Roles of the Christian

7 Roles in 1 Chapter

The Word of God provides many word pictures of the Christian. There are seven in 1 Peter chapter 2.

(1) Babes in Christ (v. 2) ~ Babies need assistance even in feeding themselves. Babies are characterized by dependence. They naturally “desire the pure milk of the Word.”

(2) Living stones (v. 5) ~ Stones were used in Biblical times as major components in building. Jesus Christ is the foundation, and individual believers are added to the “spiritual house” of God.

(3) A holy priesthood (v. 5) ~ The priesthood assists others in worshipping God. We are to offer “spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God.”

(4) Strangers (v. 11) ~ A stranger is abiding away from home. As the old hymn states, “This world is not my home…” Our purpose and role on earth is to “glorify God.”

(5) Pilgrims (v. 11) ~ Pilgrims are more than strangers in that they are travelling toward home. “This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through.” On our journey we are to be focused and avoid that which “wars against our soul.”

(6) Servants (v. 18) ~ Servants obediently meet the needs of others. They willingly sacrifice their own needs and desires for the good of their Master.

(7) Sufferers (v. 20) ~ Sufferers are more than servants in that they are submitting to undeserved hurt. Patience while suffering is “commendable to God.”

CONTEMPLATE: The difference between a stranger (or a pilgrim) and a tourist.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

EXTRA: Check This Out!

Linda of Washougal made a great comment to my last blog.
Her comment is directly related to both the blog title of “It is…” and the topic of salvation.
Thank You, Linda
~ Blogger Bob

It Is …

It is written. ~ It is I. ~ It is finished!

“It is written” (Matthew 4:4) relates to the knowledge of salvation.
The fact is salvation can be assured today.
Because God can be trusted, salvation provides certainty.

Jesus Christ said that individuals should not live by physical food alone but through the sustenance of spiritual food—the living Word of God. He goes on to say that we should not test the boundaries with God (negative), but choose to worship and serve God (positive).

“It is I” (John 6:20) has to do with the joy of salvation.
Our salvation will be complete in the future.
God manifests His presence to His own which provides enjoyment.

The disciples were afraid and Jesus came to them and told them that since they were His they should not be afraid. The essence of His message was do not fear what life brings to you (negative) but rather trust in Him to see you through life’s difficulties (positive).

“It is finished!” (John 19:30) concerns the way of salvation.
The reality of salvation was accomplished at the Cross in the past.
Since Jesus Christ conquered death, His followers are guaranteed safety.

History is really His-story! The greatest event in human history occurred at the Cross of Calvary. Hundreds of prophecies were fulfilled. Death was defeated. Satan’s final destination was assured. Sinners have their judgment paid in full but only if they accept the free gift of salvation.

Jesus Christ is the only way, the only truth, and is the only source of spiritual life. No one will go to an eternity with God except those who come through the shed blood of His Son, Jesus Christ (John 14:6).

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Key Issue in Doctrine

Do or Done?

Is belief in Christ sufficient for your salvation, or do you need to do something after receiving His free “gift of salvation”? Some groups teach that once you have put your faith in Christ you must do something to make your salvation secure. But what did our Master say? “It is finished!” (John 19:30).

Claiming that an individual must do something to earn their place in heaven is saying that the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ was not enough! What an insult to God!

It is not Do, but Done.
It is not for us to Try, but to Trust.
It is not by Attainment, but by Atonement.
It is not by our Merit, but by God's Mercy.

Jesus took our Place that we might have His Peace.
He took our Sin that we might have His Salvation.
Jesus died among Sinners, that we might dwell among Saints.
Christ became the Son of Man, that we might become the Sons of God!

Jesus Christ came to a world in which there is no light, that He might take us to a world in which there is no darkness.

When it comes to spiritual issues a key question is: Is the work of salvation complete, or can we add anything to His finished work?

I remember a story told to me many years ago. It seems that an old man once said it took him forty years to learn three simple things. The first was that he could not do anything to save himself; the second was that God did not expect him to; and the third was that Christ had done it all, and all he had to do was to accept the accomplished fact.

CONTEMPLATE: You can’t; God never said you could. – He can; He always said He would!

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Key Issue in Belief

Who Is the Christ?

When it comes to validating true Christianity, the beliefs about Jesus Christ’s birth, life, ministry, death, resurrection, and ascension back to heaven are the ultimate issues!

Major Key Elements (all were prophesied):
The virgin birth of Christ—without a human father.
The sinless life of One who was fully man while fully God.
Going about His Father’s business as He did His Father’s will.
Crucifixion that was without justifiable legal cause.
Bodily resurrection from the grave.
Eye witnesses after His resurrection including over 500 at one time (1 Corinthians 15:6).
His ascension to heaven and His future return to gather His followers.

These core beliefs of the historic Christian faith are the issues to examine in order to evaluate whether any belief system is truly Biblical. Careful examination of these issues will expose any cult.

Jesus Christ said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life” (John 14:6).

What one believes about the person of Jesus Christ will determine their eternal future. Study the four Gospels to learn the truth. Examine the rest of the Bible with Jesus Christ in view—He is seen by careful readers throughout all of Scripture.

How about you? Do you have a full understanding of who Jesus Christ is? Does it fully harmonize with what the Bible tells us?