Posts Tagged ‘lord jesus christ’

Piece of encouragement


 

“May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.”

(2 Thessalonians 2:16-17)

Reflection:

Paul had no doubt that God was not a disinterested spectator in the affairs of the world, of His Church and of His people individually. His learning and his experience taught him otherwise. His encounter with the living Jesus, his experience of the Holy Spirit and the way God opened his eyes to the Scriptures convinced him of God’s presence, purpose and commitment. He lived his life accordingly.

Paul’s prayer request here is an acknowledgement of the personal presence and involvement of God. He does not prayer that messengers will be sent to us but that God Himself will reach into our lives to encourage and strengthen us. His own experience would have been of the truth of such blessing by God and of its value and importance.

Christian life and ministry can, at times, be very lonely and insecure. We may wonder where God is and if what we are about has any significance or value in the greater scale of things. We may even become confused by what appears to be contradictory teaching by different churches, by different ministers within the same denomination, and even by the ridicule levelled at Christianity by others.

We need to remember that Jesus gave His life, and His ongoing commitment, to the people who would believe in Him and continue His work and ministry. Every aspect of it, whether thought, word or deed is of importance and, if of God, contributes towards the building and extension of His Kingdom. Each one of us does indeed have a Circle of Influence, far wider in today’s world than we would at first imagine.

If God desires something to happen, whether on an international or personal front, then He will support and empower it. If God wishes you or me to lead a particular type of life – a holy life – then He will support, empower and encourage it. He will also stand with us when the enemy attacks us and attempts to scare us into inactivity or lead us astray.

We may ask and receive – and step out in that confidence.

Response:

Remind yourself of Jesus promise to be with you always, and act accordingly.

Prayer:

Lord Jesus please help me to remember that I am not alone, but that You are with me always. Please help me to think, speak and act in a way that honours You – and strengthen and encourage me every step of the Way. Amen

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YOU WERE FORGIVEN


Forgiveness of sins is one of the great themes of the Bible. Luke 23:34 “Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.” There is so much that scripture says about it that it would take volumes of books to adequately deal with the subject. It will suffice to say that the blood of Jesus is what provided us with forgiveness of sins. That sacrifice was so great that it outweighed all our sins. It covered all the sins of the world-past, present, and future.

Most Christians have the concept that the sins they committed before they professed faith in Christ are forgiven at salvation, but any sins that are committed after that time are not forgiven until they repent and ask for forgiveness. This is not the case.

All our sins: past, present, and future were forgiven through the one offering of Jesus. If God can’t forgive future sins, then none of us can be saved because Jesus only died once, nearly 2,000 years ago, before we had committed any sins. All our sins have been forgiven.

The forgiveness of our sins is not the ultimate goal of our salvation. It is just a necessary step. The real goal of salvation is relationship with the Father and sin is a barrier to that relationship. So, it had to be dealt with, and it was, through the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. But those who stop with the forgiveness of sins and don’t go on into eternal life are missing the heart of salvation. Our sins have been forgiven so that we may enter into intimacy with the Lord.

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It is through the riches of God’s grace that we have received forgiveness for our sins. There is nothing we can do to obtain forgiveness except humble ourselves and receive forgiveness as a gift through faith in Christ.

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