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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sin Separated Us from God

When Adam and Eve sinned, their first impulse was to hide themselves from God (Genesis 3:8). They hid because they recognized their nakedness. When God called Adam, Adam answered, "I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself" (Genesis 3:10).
Adam and Eve were stripped of their cloak of righteousness and stood naked before God. Sin caused a separation between God and humankind (Isaiah 59:2), and only in Christ are we reconciled to God. "For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life" (Romans 5:10).
The message of reconciliation has been entrusted to the Church—to the Old Testament Church in type, and the New Testament Church in truth.
And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto him, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God “(2 Corinthians 5:18-20).
In Christ we are reconciled with God. But as long as sin exists, face-to-face communication with God is not possible. The brightness of His glory would consume us. Whenever God has revealed Himself to humans, it was either in a dream or God veiled His glory. When God spoke to Israel from Mount Sinai, He warned them that they would die if they came too close.
The presence of God, although veiled in thick clouds, was so impressive that the people requested Moses to speak to them the words of God, lest they should die from the voice of God (Exodus 20:19). Even in vision, the prophets felt that they would die in the presence of God.
So I said, 'Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, And I dwell in the midst of people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, The LORD of hosts” (Isaiah 6:5 NKJV).
In New Testament times, the situation was no different. When John saw Jesus in vision, he fell as dead (Revelation 1:17).

One day it will be possible again to stand before God and speak to Him face to face, "For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face: Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known" (1 Corinthians 13:12 NKJV).
Our communication is hindered, but it will be restored. "For we know in part and we prophesy in part: But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away" (1 Corinthians 13:9-10 NKJV).

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Way to Heaven

By Jesus Alone—“Let not your heart be troubled,” He
[Jesus] said; “ye believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s houses are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.” For your sake I came into the world. I am working in your behalf. When I go away, I shall still work earnestly for you. I came into the world to reveal Myself to you, that you might believe. I go to the Father to cooperate with Him in your behalf.

The object of Christ’s departure was the opposite of what the disciples feared. It did not mean a final separation. He was going to prepare a place for them, that He might come again, and receive them unto Himself. While 9 He was building mansions for them, they were to build characters after the divine similitude. Still the disciples were perplexed. Thomas, always troubled by doubts, said, “Lord, we know not whither Thou goest; and how can we know the way? Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me. If ye had known Me, ye should have known My Father also: and from henceforth ye know Him, and have seen Him.”
There are not many ways to heaven. Each one may not choose his own way. Christ says, “I am the way: ... no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.” Since the first gospel sermon was preached, when in Eden it was declared that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent’s head, Christ had been uplifted as the way, the truth, and the life.

• He was the way when Adam lived, when Abel presented to God the blood of the slain lamb, representing the blood of the Redeemer.
• Christ was the way by which patriarchs’ and prophets were saved.
• He is the way by which alone we can have access to God.
The Surety of Our Deliverance—By His humanity, Christ touched humanity; by His divinity, He lays hold upon the throne of God. As the Son of man, He gave us an example of obedience; as the Son of God, He gives us power to obey.

It was Christ who from the bush on Mount Horeb spoke to Moses saying, “I AM THAT I AM.... Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.” Exodus 3:14. This was the pledge of Israel’s deliverance.

And to us He says: “I AM the Good Shepherd.” “I AM the living Bread.” “I AM the Way, the Truth, and the
Life.” “All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.”John 10:11; 6:51; 14:6; Matthew 28:18. I AM the assurance of every promise. I AM; be not afraid. “God with us” is the surety of our deliverance from sin, the assurance of our power to obey the law of heaven

The True Path That Leads to Heaven—Many are losing the right way, in consequence of thinking that they must climb to heaven, that they must do something to merit the favor of God.

But when we accept Christ, good works will appear as fruitful evidence that we are in the way of life,
that Christ is our way, and that we are treading the true path that leads to heaven.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Get Involved - World Aids Day

In the past decade, the number of those infected with HIV or AIDS has doubled to more than 40 million. While it's easy to feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the problem, we must understand that the worldwide tolls of these diseases can be greatly reduced. The first steps are to educate ourselves, educate others, prevent further infection, and care for a young generation of affected children.
What Everyone Should Know
HIV and AIDS are a global pandemic. HIV has infected people in every country on earth and devastated entire nations. The numbers are enormous, but these numbers represent people. There are mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, children, grandparents, and babies who have been infected with HIV and have died from AIDS.

Education is the first step in preventing, treating, and stopping the spread of HIV and the progression to AIDS.

New hope:
MY BELOVED FRIENDS, biblical hope is a reality and not a feeling. Biblical hope carries no doubt. Biblical hope is a sure foundation upon which we base our lives, believing that God always keeps His promises. Hope or confident assurance can be ours when we trust the words, “He who believes on Me has everlasting life” (John 6:47, NKJV). Accepting that gift of eternal life means our hope is no longer filled with doubt, but rather has at its sure foundation the whole of God’s Word, the entirety of God’s character, and the finished work of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

We should always lean to Jesus!