Thoughts On The Atonement – 5/13/15

I have been thinking a lot lately about The Atonement. More specifically, I’ve been thinking about what actually did happen and did not happen on The Cross, when Jesus died for us. This way of looking at The Atonement may be a different way of looking at it than how you’re typically accustomed to looking at it, but I hope you consider them and ponder upon them. These thoughts aren’t in any particular order or categorized in any way, they’re just some of my thoughts on the subject. Here they are:

-The Cross isn’t where God’s anger was released. It’s where His love was revealed.

-The Cross wasn’t about paying God off because mankind wasn’t in bondage to The Father. The Cross was about fixing the sin problem because mankind was in bondage to sin.

-The Cross doesn’t show that God abandoned Jesus on the Cross. To the contrary, the Resurrection proves that He didn’t.

-“Grace people” (including myself) adamantly contend that Adam was not forsaken by God when He sinned. Ironically, many of them adamantly contend that He did forsake and abandon Jesus when He became our sin.

-The Father releasing His wrath did not and could not accomplish redemption. The shedding of Blood is what accomplished our redemption.
Eph. 1:7 – In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Healing Made Easy – 3/11/15

The account in Matt. 8:1-4 is amazing to me! This lawfully unclean man came to Jesus asking for healing. Jesus told Him that healing was His will (as it always is), and touched & healed Him. Jesus did not go through any assessment whatsoever to see if this man qualified for healing. This man did not have to:

-confess any sins
-check his heart for any unconfessed sin(s)
-ask for forgiveness for any sins
-check his heart to see if he had any unforgiveness or bitterness
-tally up his recent prayer time to make sure he’s been fellowshipping with God enough lately to deserve healing
-check his church attendance (he wasn’t even allowed to attend synagogue in his leprous condition)
-make sure that he had been living holy enough lately

All the man did was come in his altogether unqualified state to Jesus to receive healing. And even if he had done all of the things listed above, and then some, that still would not have qualified him for healing. Healing is a free gift from the Lord. Jesus is our sole qualification for healing. The man had to meet no requirements to be healed. And AFTER the Lord healed him, then He gave the man an instruction. This is grace! Blessing first, instruction second!

Matthew 8:1-4 – When He had come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him. And behold, a leper came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.” Then Jesus put out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed. And Jesus said to him, “See that you tell no one; but go your way, show yourself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”

Righteousness – Christianity’s Best Kept Secret – 2/19/15

The NT word for “righteousness” literally means, “To be in a condition that is acceptable to God, to be as you ought to be.” Jesus has made us acceptable to God, He has made us what we ought to be. Jesus came to make us right with God and He succeeded. We are not in a continual process of getting more & more right with God. The gift of righteousness that He has given us is His own right-standing with the Father and we cannot add to it. We ARE in right standing with God. We do not bounce in-and-out of righteousness, or fellowship, or acceptance with God. It’s a perfect, permanent state, and if we don’t believe that then the tangible peace of God that passes all understanding will always elude us. You can’t have the peace of God that passes all understanding if you wrongly believe that you’re not what you ought to be in His sight and that He’s not at peace with you. The gift of righteousness may be the best kept secret in all of Christianity.

You Are Dead – 2/16/15

Romans 6:7, 11 – For he that is dead is freed from sin…Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

The book of Romans as a whole is nothing less than a stunning masterpiece! It exhibits the pure Gospel, showing in remarkable, fine detail just how amazing our Savior is and how amazing this system of justification that He established for us is! You just can’t beat the book of Romans! That being said, Romans 6 came alive in my heart today. Romans 6 teaches us, amongst other things, that we as Believers have died to sin. This is a profound truth which could certainly merit an entire book’s worth of teaching. But, I’ll just briefly touch on it here in this post. When Romans 6 teaches that we are dead to sin, it’s specifically talking about the old sin nature that every human being born into this earth receives from the original man, Adam. So, you could say, we are dead to Adam, or we are dead to the Adamic race. Adam’s race of species, after the man’s original fall into sin, became a species of sin. But, Jesus came and put an end to the agamic race for all who would choose to be born into a new family, the family of God. So, here a few points that we can draw out of Romans 6:

-It’s appointed unto man once to die…Jesus died that death for us
-Jesus died to Adam on our behalf
-Jesus died to our sin for us
-We no longer need to “die to sin” because we’re already dead to it
-Sin is not a part of our identity. We are literally dead to sin

Again, I know that there is much that we can draw from Romans 6, and that these are just a few, short points, but these few truths that I’ve shared here alone are enough to change a person’s life significantly! Allow these simple, powerful truths to resonate in your heart and to bring forth resurrection power in your life!

Salvation Thoughts… – 2/5/15

The greatest revelation of the Gospel, the thing that makes the Gospel the Good News that it is, is that salvation is a free gift. It is completely and forever free to we the recipients. But some how or another, we’ve believed the lie that “getting forgiven and saved” is just the cute little baby stage thing that you are required to go through at first, BUT THEN you need to grow up and mature in the things of God! We’ve seldom examined and explored the depths of the glorious salvation that we received in an instant, by grace through faith. Salvation isn’t some thing that we leave behind at the entrance, but it’s the life of God that we’re meant to ever experience. A lack of understanding how amazing the gift of salvation is has led us to believe that it is some petty, little “thing” that we ourselves are required to conjure up the ability to hold onto. But salvation is not some tiny, slippery, ever-elusive thing that God gives us so that we may try hold onto it with all of our might. It’s a person named Jesus, who never leaves us and never abandons us.