That Will Be Glory for Me

If indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.
Romans 8:17
Salvation is past, present, and future—we have been saved, are being saved, and will be saved. We often call justification that process by which we are saved from the penalty of our sins. That happens the moment we receive Jesus as our Savior. Sanctification is the ongoing process of becoming more like Christ as we are set aside for His service. We are being saved from the power of our sins. Glorification will occur when we are raptured or resurrected. Our bodies will be transformed for eternity, and we’ll be saved from the very presence of sin.
When we come to Christ, we are saved once for all. But salvation touches our past, present, and future. Romans 8:17 looks forward to the day when we will be glorified together, changed in an instant, and transformed for eternity.

What should we do as we await the day when God will glorify us? We should glorify Him now and praise His name forever. The Bible tells us to “glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Corinthians 6:20).

The work of sanctifying his redeemed, which the Saviour begins on earth, finds its completion in their glorification in heaven.
Samuel Harris

-David Jeremiah

God’s Certain Purpose 

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
Romans 8:28 
It’s true for all of life’s endeavors, but take athletics as an example: Everything one puts into years of training and competing plays a part in the ultimate achievement of victory. Or not, since victory isn’t guaranteed. But athletes take the long view of their vocation, allowing the ups and downs they endure to play a part in not only perfecting athletic skill, but their maturity as well.
The example of athletics isn’t a perfect parallel to the Christian life for many reasons—but for a primary one: Victory is guaranteed for the Christian! The apostle Paul wrote that everything in life is used by God in the Christian’s life for good, to accomplish God’s purpose. And what is that purpose? Romans 8:29 tells us: “To be conformed to the image of His Son.” That result is not a maybe, it is a certainty.

Trust God. Everything in your past, present, and future is playing a role in conforming you to the image of Christ. You may not see the purpose immediately, or ever, but God does.

God permits no suffering or trials without a purpose, even though that purpose may be hidden from us.
Frank Retief

 

  • David Jeremiah

The Greatest New Beginning Ever. (Thinking Through Acts 1:1-5)

What is the biggest new beginning the world has ever seen?

Some might point to the conclusion of WWII, ushering in a post-war era, or the the dropping of atomic bombs, ushering in the nuclear age and a nuclear arms race. Some might point to the Reformation, or the Enlightenment, or of course, the current pandemic. Has anyone in the world been immune to the changes it has brought?

Whatever we might think has been the biggest “new beginning” humanity has experienced, let me suggest that the biggest and greatest new beginning ever can be found summed up in the first few verses of the book of Acts:

In my first book I told you, Theophilus, about everything Jesus began to do and teach until the day he was taken up to heaven…

ACTS 1:1-2 (NLT)

The writer, in speaking of a first book, is referring here to the Gospel of Luke in which he wrote about the birth, life, teaching, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus. The biggest new beginning the world has ever seen is Jesus!

You don’t need to be a Christian to appreciate how Jesus has had a great impact on world history. Yes, Christians have sometimes had a negative impact, but there can be no doubt Jesus has changed the course of world history. Of course we can also think about the impact Jesus has had in many, many individual lives.

Continue at: https://clarkedixon.wordpress.com/2021/11/11/the-greatest-new-beginning-ever-thinking-through-acts-11-5/

John 3

God Is in Control of Our Salvation

Ephesians 1:3-14 Let us honor and thank the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. He has already given us a taste of what heaven is like. Even before the world was made, God chose us for Himself because of His love. He planned that we should be holy and without blame as He sees us. God already planned to have us as His own children. This was done by Jesus Christ. In His plan God wanted this done.

We thank God for His grace to us. He gave this grace to us through His beloved Son. Because of the blood of Christ, we are bought and made free from the punishment of sin. And because of His blood, our sins are forgiven. His grace to us is so rich. He was so willing to give all of this to us. He did this with wisdom and understanding. God told us the secret of what He wanted to do. It is this: In loving thought He planned long ago to send Christ into the world. 10 The plan was for Christ to gather us all together at the right time. If we are in heaven or still on earth, He will bring us together and will be head over all.

11 We were already chosen to be God’s own children by Christ. This was done just like the plan He had. 12 We who were the first to put our trust in Christ should thank Him for His greatness. 13 The truth is the Good News. When you heard the truth, you put your trust in Christ. Then God marked you by giving you His Holy Spirit as a promise. 14 The Holy Spirit was given to us as a promise that we will receive everything God has for us. God’s Spirit will be with us until God finishes His work of making us complete. God does this to show His glory.

Because God is all-powerful, all-knowing, and omnipresent, everything in both the natural and spiritual realms is under His complete control. That includes our salvation. No matter how many times we’ve tried to turn away from the Lord, He continues to seek us in His complete sovereignty and grace.

The Lord has issued a universal call inviting everyone to come to Him. Scripture says it isn’t His will that anyone perish, nor does He take pleasure in the death of the wicked (The Lord is not slow about keeping His promise as some people think. He is waiting for you. The Lord does not want any person to be punished forever. He wants all people to be sorry for their sins and turn from them. 2 Pet. 3:9; Say to them, ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I am not pleased when sinful people die. But I am pleased when the sinful turn from their way and live. Turn! Turn from your sinful ways! Why will you die, O people of Israel?’ Ezek. 33:11). He desires that all come to a knowledge of the truth—namely, that there is one God, sin separates us from Him, and only faith in Jesus reconciles us to Him (He wants all people to be saved from the punishment of sin. He wants them to come to know the truth. There is one God. There is one Man standing between God and men. That Man is Christ Jesus. He gave His life for all men so they could go free and not be held by the power of sin. God made this known to the world at the right time. 1 Tim. 2:4-6).

We can take no credit for our salvation; Scripture says that none of us seek God (There is not one who understands. There is not one who tries to find God. Rom. 3:11). Instead, the desire to know Him comes through the Spirit’s work of convicting hearts and providing the faith to believe in Jesus as Savior. Every step of salvation—from first to last—is of God.

No plan of our heavenly Father’s can be stopped, so ask the Holy Spirit to help you grasp the immensity of divine grace, love, and mercy.

Saved by grace

Romans 5:1-11 Now that we have been made right with God by putting our trust in Him, we have peace with Him. It is because of what our Lord Jesus Christ did for us. By putting our trust in God, He has given us His loving-favor and has received us. We are happy for the hope we have of sharing the shining-greatness of God. We are glad for our troubles also. We know that troubles help us learn not to give up. When we have learned not to give up, it shows we have stood the test. When we have stood the test, it gives us hope. Hope never makes us ashamed because the love of God has come into our hearts through the Holy Spirit Who was given to us.

We were weak and could not help ourselves. Then Christ came at the right time and gave His life for all sinners. No one is willing to die for another person, but for a good man someone might be willing to die. But God showed His love to us. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Now that we have been saved from the punishment of sin by the blood of Christ, He will save us from God’s anger also. 10 We hated God. But we were saved from the punishment of sin by the death of Christ. He has brought us back to God and we will be saved by His life. 11 Not only that, we give thanks to God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Him we have been brought back to God.

Scripture can paint a grim picture of mankind. We’re spiritually dead in our sins, alienated from God, and objects of His wrath. Can you imagine a scarier situation to be in? But there’s hope for us through faith in Jesus. God opens our eyes to our hopeless condition so we can turn to His Son in repentance and receive the riches of His salvation.

By God’s grace, we’ve been reconciled to Him. On the cross, Jesus bore the Father’s wrath for our sins so we could be forgiven and declared righteous. Now instead of being His enemies, we’re His beloved children. He made us spiritually alive by giving us a new nature created in righteousness and holiness. And now His love has been poured out in our hearts, and we have the sure hope of the glory of heaven.

Knowing how amazing God’s grace is, we should respond with gratitude, praise, and wholehearted devotion. In addition, today’s passage tells us to rejoice not only in God and our hope of glory but also in our troubles. That’s because He graciously uses difficulties to make us like Christ and increase our confidence in His love.

More Than a Savior

Hebrews 1:1-4 Long ago God spoke to our early fathers in many different ways. He spoke through the early prophets. But in these last days He has spoken to us through His Son. God gave His Son everything. It was by His Son that God made the world. The Son shines with the glory of the Father. The Son is as God is in every way. It is the Son Who holds up the whole world by the power of His Word. The Son gave His own life so we could be clean from all sin. After He had done that, He sat down on the right side of God in heaven. The Son of God was made greater and better than the angels. God gave Him a greater name than theirs.

Who is this Jesus? It’s a question that has been asked by countless individuals for more than two millennia. And, to be sure, it is the most important question that can ever be asked and answered. After all, it’s how we begin our journey toward salvation.

So it’s essential to answer that question by saying Jesus is indeed our Savior. But He is also more—Scripture refers to Him as “the image of the invisible God” (Col. 1:15). No one has ever looked upon the face of the Almighty. In the Old Testament, some people found themselves in His presence, but they were never able to look fully upon His glory. However, when the Son came down from heaven, veiled in human flesh, He bridged the gap between the Father’s perfect holiness and mankind’s sinful condition. That’s why Jesus could say, “The one who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9).

The way we come to know the Father is by knowing the Son, who is the only full expression and explanation of God. Everyone who through faith trusts Jesus as Savior receives forgiveness of sins and Christ’s imputed righteousness. What’s more, believers are given divine insight into God the Father as well.

From Alienation to Reconciliation

2 Corinthians 5:14-21 14 For the love of Christ puts us into action. We are sure that Christ died for everyone. So, because of that, everyone has a part in His death. 15 Christ died for everyone so that they would live for Him. They should not live to please themselves but for Christ Who died on a cross and was raised from the dead for them.

16 So from now on, we do not think about what people are like by looking at them. We even thought about Christ that way one time. But we do not think of Him that way anymore. 17 For if a man belongs to Christ, he is a new person. The old life is gone. New life has begun. 18 All this comes from God. He is the One Who brought us to Himself when we hated Him. He did this through Christ. Then He gave us the work of bringing others to Him. 19 God was in Christ. He was working through Christ to bring the whole world back to Himself. God no longer held men’s sins against them. And He gave us the work of telling and showing men this. 20 We are Christ’s missionaries. God is speaking to you through us. We are speaking for Christ and we ask you from our hearts to turn from your sins and come to God. 21 Christ never sinned but God put our sin on Him. Then we are made right with God because of what Christ has done for us.

One of the hardest truths for many nonbelievers to accept is that they’re enemies of God. Even though they aren’t close to the Lord, they still consider themselves good people. Surely, they think, I haven’t done anything bad enough to make myself His enemy. But the truth is, everyone begins life alienated from God because all mankind is born into sin (See, I was born in sin and was in sin from my very beginning. Psalm 51:5; This is what happened: Sin came into the world by one man, Adam. Sin brought death with it. Death spread to all men because all have sinned. Rom. 5:12).

To be saved, a person must first understand that the gap between perfect God and sinful man is vast. Human beings like comparing themselves with others to illustrate how good they are, but the standard for goodness isn’t other people; it’s a holy, perfect God. The only way to reach Him is through faith in His Son for forgiveness and reconciliation (Jesus said, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one can go to the Father except by Me.John 14:6).  Whoever rejects Christ’s offer of salvation simply cannot spend eternity with God.

Only the cross of Christ spans the gulf between alienation and reconciliation. Jesus took our sins upon Himself and underwent the punishment we deserved. Now any person who trusts in the Savior’s substitutionary atonement can enter into a new life of communion with God.

Five Benefits of Salvation (A Brief Look at Hebrews 6)

Hebrews 6 is a challenging chapter. Several of my friends and I are reading through this chapter each day this week (our Bible study is described here) and then, on Sunday, we will write each other a brief email highlighting something we got out of the chapter before we move on to Hebrews 7.

I want us to focus this morning not on the possibility of one losing his or her salvation, but on the benefits of being in the family of God. Here are the verses I’m thinking about:

There is much here, but I want to list and briefly discuss each of the five benefits of salvation highlighted here by the author of Hebrews. The text speaks of

Those Who Have —

1. Once Been Enlightened

2. Tasted The Heavenly Gift

3. Shared In The Holy Spirit

4. Tasted The Goodness Of The Word Of God

5. Tasted The Powers Of The Coming Age

The rest is at: https://larrydixon.wordpress.com/2021/08/08/five-benefits-of-salvation-a-brief-look-at-hebrews-6/

A Supernatural Birth

A Broadcast with Steven Lawson

Being born again does not mean turning over a new leaf; it is the gift of new life. Today, Steven Lawson explains how Scripture presents a Christian’s regeneration as a supernatural event wrought by the power of the Holy Spirit.