Thursday, February 16, 2017

Jesus Is the Gate

John 10:7-21, "Jesus said again, 'I tell you the truth, I Am the gate for the sheep. All who ever came before me were thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I Am the gate, whoever enters through Me will be saved. He will come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal, kill, and destroy; I have come that they may have life and and have it to the full. (In abundance) I Am the good Shepherd Who lays down His life for His sheep. The hired hand does not own the sheep. So when the wolf comes, he abandons the sheep. Then the wolf attacks the sheep and scatters them. The man runs away because he does not care about the sheep. I (Jesus) know my sheep and my sheep know Me. Just as the Father knows Me, I know the Father and lay down My life for the sheep. The Father Loves Me because I lay down My life for the sheep. I (Jesus) lay it down of My own accord and I have the authority to to take it up again. This command I received from My Father.' At these words the Jews were again divided. Many of them said, 'He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to Him?' But others said, 'These are not the words of a demon. Demons cannot open the eyes of the blind.' "

In this parable, the saved are portrayed as "sheep" knowing the voice of their Shepherd. They follow Him in and out of the gate. The Holy Spirit is GOD's voice to the saved. Upon salvation, the Holy Spirit enters, leading, guiding, and directing our lives. We have to be willing to accept His leadership. This is why Jesus laid down His life upon the Cross where He bore all of our sins. But He took up His life again when He rose from the dead. Only those who belong to Him will enter the Gate of Heaven. It's not by "good works" but by the forgiveness of our sins by Christ Jesus that we are given eternal life in Him. Jesus said, "I Am the way, the truth, and the life. NO ONE comes to the Father but through Me." (John 14:6)

Have you come to Christ Jesus for salvation? It only takes your prayer of asking Him to forgive you of your sins and to come into your heart. He will then be your Shepherd, leading you in this life. He will guide you through the gate of this life into Eternity with Him forever and ever. 

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Jesus is the Good Shepherd

John 10:1-6, " 'I (Jesus) tell you, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber.The man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep. The watchman opens the gate for him and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and they come out. When he has brought out all his sheep, he goes on ahead of them and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact they will run away from him for they do not recognize a stranger's voice.' Jesus used this figure of speech, but they did not understand what He was telling them." Just as the shepherd cares for his sheep, Jesus the Good Shepherd, cares for His flock (those who follow Him.) The prophet Ezekiel, in predicting the coming of the Messiah, called Him a shepherd. (Ezekiel 34:23) 

Matthew 25:32-34 tells of the final judgment: "All the nations will be gathered before Him (Jesus), and He will separate the people one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep (believers) on His right hand and the goats (unbelievers) on His left. The the King (Jesus) will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed by My Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world...' (verse 41 continues the judgment) Then He will say to those on His left, 'Depart from Me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.' "

The Lake of Fire is not only for the devil and his angels, but also for all of mankind who have rejected Christ Jesus - those who looked forward and rejected His salvation as well as those who now look back and reject His salvation. Do you know Jesus? All you need do is repent of your sins to Him and ask His forgiveness. He will forgive you and His Holy Spirit will enter and confirm your salvation!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Jesus Teaches About Spiritual Blindness

John 9:35-41, "When Jesus heard they (the Pharisees) had thrown the man (whom Jesus had healed his physical blindness from birth) out, He found him and said, 'Do you believe in the Son of Man?' 'Who is he, sir?' the man asked. 'Tell me that I may believe in him.' Jesus said, 'You have seen Him; in fact He is the One speaking with you.' Then the man said, 'LORD, I believe,' and he worshiped Him. Jesus said, 'For judgment I have come into this world so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.' Some Pharisees who were with Him heard Him say this and asked, 'What! Are we blind too!' Jesus said, 'If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.' "

When you turn to Christ, you begin to see Him differently. The longer you walk with Him, the better you will understand Who He is. If you want to know more about Jesus, keep trusting Him in every area of your life.* (*Bible commentary) "Grow in the grace and knowledge of our LORD and Savior Jesus Christ." (I Peter 3:18) Though the Pharisees had physical sight, they were spiritually blind to the truth of Who Jesus Christ was. As so many multitudes of people are today. Come to Jesus as your Savior and the Holy Spirit will lead you into the righteousness of His salvation and will for your life.  

Thursday, January 26, 2017

The Pharisees Question About the Blind Man

John 9:13-34, "They brought to the Pharisees the man who had been blind from birth. The day Jesus had healed him was on the Sabbath. They questioned him how he had received his sight. He told them He had placed mud on his eyes and told him to go and wash and he was able to see. Some of the Pharisees said, 'This man is not from GOD for He does not keep the Sabbath.' Others asked, 'How can a sinner do miraculous signs?' The Jews did not believe he was blind until they brought his parents. (The parents confirmed their son's blindness from birth.) Because they were afraid of the Jews, they said they didn't know Who made him to see again. The Jews had decided that anyone who acknowledged that Jesus was the Christ would be put out of the synagogue (excommunicated). A second time they called the man who had been blind from birth, but now sees. They asked him again how his sight had been restored. They told him to give glory to GOD, for this Man was a sinner. The man with restored sight replied, 'I don't know about that. All I know is I was blind but now I see.' They asked him again how he received his sight. He answered, 'I already told you and you did not listen! Do you want to hear it again so you can become His disciples?' The Pharisees hurled insults at him. He replied to them, 'You don't know where He comes from, yet He healed my eyes. If this Man were not from GOD, He could do nothing.' The Pharisees replied, 'You who were steeped in sin being blind from birth dare lecture us! And they threw him out!" 

"There is none so blind than those who refuse to see." (John Heywood, 1546) Restated from Jeremiah 5:21.

Jeremiah 5:21, 24 "Hear this you foolish and sinful people, who have eyes but do not see, who have ears and do not hear...they do not say to themselves, 'Let us fear the LORD our GOD.' "

People who refuse to see and hear, it becomes: "It's like talking to a brick wall." Oscar Wilde.

The Bible states that after awhile, he will give these people over to their depraved minds. See Romans 1:28, "Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to know the knowledge of GOD, He gave them over to a depraved mind and to do what ought not to be done."

"GOD (His Spirit) will not always strive with (unbelieving) man (spirit) ." Genesis 6:3. The commentary shares to unbelievers, "GOD shows great patience with 'unbelievers'. He gives time to quit living (in sin) and begin living
for Him. Your time may be running out." No one is guaranteed his next breath of life. 

1 Corinthians 6:2, "I tell you, now is the time of GOD's favor, now is the day of salvation." If you don't know Jesus Christ as your LORD and Savior, now is the time to come to Him and find out! Repent of you sin and accept His death on the Cross for your sins and His Holy Spirit will enter you and you will KNOW His truths of salvation and everlasting life with Him in all His glory forevermore!

Matthew 11:28, "Jesus said, 'Come to Me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you for I Am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls."

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Jesus Heals the Man Who was Blind From Birth

John 9:1-12, "As (Jesus) went along, He saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked Him, 'Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?' Jesus said, 'Neither this man nor his parents sin, but this happened so that the work of GOD be displayed in his life. As long as it is day, we must do the work of Him Who sent Me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I Am in the world, I Am the Light of the world.' Having said this He spit on the ground, made some mud with His saliva and put it on the man's eyes and told him, 'Go wash in the Pool of Siloam' (This word means sent.) So the man went and washed coming home seeing. His neighbors who had seen him begging asked, 'Isn't this the same man who used to sit and beg?' Some said it was, others said he looked to be the same man. But he himself said, 'I am the man.' They inquired how his eyes were opened. He replied, 'The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to the Pool of Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see.' They asked him, 'Where is this man?' He replied, 'I don't know.' "

There are four different reactions to Jesus. 1. The neighbor revealed surprise and skepticism 2. The Pharisees showed disbelief and prejudice 3. The parents believed but kept quiet for fear of excommunication 4. The healed man showed consistent, growing faith.

Each reaction to Jesus allowed the man to reach a clearer understanding of the One Who had healed him. A common belief of Jewish culture was that calamity or suffering was the result of some great sin. But GOD in His foreknowledge used the man's suffering from blindness to teach about faith and to glorify GOD. We live in a fallen world where good behavior is not always rewarded and bad behavior is not always punished. Therefore innocent people sometimes suffer. If GOD took suffering away whenever we asked, we would follow Him for comfort and convenience, not out of love and devotion. Regardless of the reasons for our suffering, Jesus has the power to help us deal with it. When suffering from a disease, tragedy, or disability, try not to ask, "Why did this happen to me?" or "What did I do wrong?" Instead, ask GOD to give you strength for the trial and a clearer perspective on what is happening. (Bible commentary)

Those in Christ have the great hope of knowing one day the things of this fallen world will be no more and we in our new bodies will in eternity be rewarded for our faith in Father GOD, our Savior Jesus, and His Holy Spirit in us! There will be no more suffering, sickness, disease, discomfort, sorrow, heartache, or the other emotions that go with living in a fallen body. 

His Word tells us in 1 Corinthians 2:9, "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what GOD has prepared for those who love Him."

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Jesus States He Is Eternal

John 8:48-59, "The Jews answered Him, 'Aren't we right in saying that you are a Samaritan and demon possessed?' Jesus said, 'I Am not possessed by a demon, but I honor My Father and you dishonor Me. I Am not seeking glory for Myself, but there is One Who seeks it and He is the Judge. I tell you the truth, if anyone keeps My Word, he will never see death.' At this the Jews exclaimed, 'Now we know that you are demon possessed! Abraham died and so did the prophets, yet you say that if anyone keeps your word, he will never taste death. Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are!' Jesus replied, 'If I glorify Myself, My glory means nothing. My Father whom you claim to be your GOD is the One Who glorifies Me. Though you do not know Him, I know Him. If I said I did not, I would be a liar like you, but I do know Him and keep His Word. Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing My day, he saw it and was glad.' The Jews said to Him, 'You are not yet fifty years old and You have seen Abraham!' Jesus answered, 'I tell you the truth, before Abraham was, I Am!' At this they picked up stones to stone Him, but Jesus hid Himself, slipping away from the temple grounds."

Jesus is GOD in the flesh. He is the Creator of all things. He rose from the dead. (Matthew 28:6, Mark 16:6, Luke 24:6, John 20:13-14)

Those that are in Christ will not see death for to be absent from the body (physical death) we are present with the LORD. (2 Corinthians 5:6-8) If you do not know the LORD you will be absent from your body (physical death), but you will be in Hades awaiting judgment. Death is not a going out of existence, only a temporary separation until judgment; Christians at the Judgment Seat of Christ will be for receiving rewards. Unbelievers will be at the Great White Throne Judgment for eternal punishment in the Lake of Fire. "NOW is the time for you to accept the LORD as your Savior." (2 Corinthians 6:2) Let the Almighty Joy of our Creator GOD fill your soul!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Jesus Speaks About GOD's True Children

John 8:31-47, "Jesus said to the Jews that believed Him, 'If you hold to My teaching, you are really My disciples. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.' They answered Him, 'We're Abraham's descendants and (we) have never been slaves to anyone. How can you say we shall be set free?' Jesus replied, 'I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So, if the the Son sets you free, you are free indeed. You are ready to kill Me, because you have no room for My word. I Am telling you what I have seen in the Father's presence and you do what you have heard from your father...You are determined to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth that I have heard from GOD. Abraham did not do such things.' They protested, 'The only Father we have is God Himself.' Jesus said to them, 'If GOD were your Father, you would love Me, for I came from GOD, I have not come on My own, but He sent Me. You belong to your father, the devil and want to carry out his desire...he is a liar and the father of lies. Yet I tell you the truth and you do not believe Me...He who belongs to GOD hears what GOD says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to GOD.'" 

A simple statement: You belong to Almighty GOD if you hear (believe in Jesus as His Son) or you do not belong to GOD if you refuse to hear (the truth of Jesus Christ.) You are a child of GOD if you hear and believe or you are a child of the devil if you refuse to hear and believe. What is your choice? Choose eternal life with our Awesome, Almighty, Creator, Savior, Holy Father GOD by accepting Jesus paying for your sin upon the cross or choose eternity in punishment with the devil and his demons by rejecting so great a Salvation. Make your choice now, there are no second chances after death.