Monday, August 29, 2016

The Blood of Sprinkling

"But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel." Hebrews 12:22-24

sprinkling: Greek word rhantismos meaning a cleansing or purification; the blood of sprinkling, i.e. appointed for sprinkling (serving to purify).

With the exception of I Peter 1:2, this word is used exclusively in the book of Hebrews.  This is fitting since Hebrews speaks primarily of our redemption in Christ as compared to the Old Testament offerings.  We know that without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sin (Hebrews 9:22).

Why does the sprinkling of Jesus' blood speak of more excellent things than Abel's?  Because Abel's blood was spilled by his muderous brother Cain and "cried out" from the ground to the Father for retribution (Genesis 4:10).  Yet Jesus' blood spilled as a willful offering cries out from the altar in Heaven for mercy.  While the cry of Abel's blood brings about curses, the cry of Jesus' blood pours out redemption.

When are we sprinkled (cleansed/purified) by the blood of Jesus? When we turn in faith to Him and as we walk continually with Him.

"But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin." I John 1:7

Friday, August 26, 2016

Stranger Still

Two strangers are at a hospital. The man sits at a piano and begins to play. The woman sits next to him and joins him in song.  This spontaneous, unrehearsed duet - caught on video by the man's wife - has since gone viral and been picked by national news as they share clips of this "inspiring" moment.

The thing about the news clips is that what they all seem to universally omit are the references to Jesus Christ.  By looking at the news, you would think these two are just singing about love.  The videos are abruptly cut short or muted after that.  Yet listen to the whole video, and you will see that these two are singing about the life changing, redeeming, supernatural, agape love of Jesus Christ which brings deliverance and healing.

The irony is that as two strangers come together to sing about the love of Jesus Christ - which each and every person needs - the world continues to try and ensure He remains a stranger.

The world loves to lavish praise on acts of "love" devoid from the One who is love, Jesus Christ. Don't become one of those people who espouse the goodness of others based upon the supposed merits of their own humanity.  What the world needs now is Jesus, and we must never forget it.

I know nothing of these 2 individuals personally, but I post this so that we remain ever mindful of the spiritual war we face.  It is real.

"Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars' hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you. 

God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring." Acts 17:22-28

May by our lives and our testimony, Jesus be no more a stranger to those who are lost and ensnared by the god of this world.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

The Sins of Manasseh

"Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears." Hebrews 12:16-17

There are many Contemporary Christian songs which make claims such as, "You can never fall too far, so fast, so far that you can't get back when you're lost."  They insist that it doesn't matter what you've done because you are never too far gone.

While these songs might be catchy and the words might be comforting to a heart darkened by sin, we must ask ourselves, "Is this true?"  Is it biblical to say that God will always be there to vacate judgment when we finally make up our minds to repent?

Yes, Jesus in fact died for all of the sin of the world. However, if we do not avail ourselves of that sacrifice, if we continue loving darkness and rejecting light, we can do despite to the Spirit of grace. There is such a thing as becoming reprobate, where you are beyond salvation (Jeremiah 6:30; Romans 1:28; I Corinthians 9:27; II Corinthians 13:5-6; II Timothy 3:8; Titus 1:16; Hebrews 6:8).
reprobate: Hebrew word ma'ac meaning to reject, despise, or refuse.

reprobate:  Greek word adokimos meaning not standing the test, not approved; that which does not prove itself such as it ought
We are to seek the Lord while He may be found, lest we be turned over to a strong delusion to be damned.

"And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness."  II Thessalonians 2:11-12

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

The Three Give Ups of God

The following is a 2004 message from Pastor Gary C. Price at Omega Ministries.

"For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. 

For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 

Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. 

And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them." Romans 1:16-32

This month we are discussing the three give ups of God as detailed in Romans Chapter 1. These Scriptures give insight into the cause of the decay of civilization and what is happening in this country and around the world.