Walking even as Christ walked—without sin.

In Romans 7:14-25, Paul is not confessing that he continually practiced sin in his daily life, but that the threat of practicing it was always with him. He always had to be on guard against it to keep it from breaking out. And, at times, it did indeed break out, reminding him not only of its presence, but also its strength. There is no doubt Paul was a mature Christian. Therefore, Paul’s example serves as a reminder to us that, no matter how spiritually mature we become, human nature will still always be with us.

Thus, because we are similar to Paul, and despite the wretchedness we may feel, we have assurance, knowing we will be delivered from this peculiar situation, one that is somewhat akin to having a dual personality. Our deliverance is through Jesus Christ; there indeed is an end. However, unlike many Protestant groups that proclaim that we do not have to keep the law because all is done for us, we know that we must strive to walk even as Christ walked—and He never sinned.

Top Reasons Why We Should Study The Old Testament

And you know that from infancy you have known the sacred Scriptures, which are able to give you wisdom for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness, So that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.—2 Timothy 3:15-17

There are many reasons to study the Old Testament. For one, the Old Testament lays the foundation for the teachings and events found in the New Testament. The Bible is a progressive revelation. If you skip the first half of any good book and try to finish it, you will have a hard time understanding the characters, the plot, and the ending. In the same way, the New Testament is only completely understood when we see its foundation of the events, characters, laws, sacrificial system, covenants, and promises of the Old Testament.

The top reasons why we should study the Old Testament are:

1. Because of the countless lessons it contains for us.

2. We find guidance for our own lives.

3. We are exhorted to trust God no matter what (Daniel 3).

4. We learn to stand firm in our convictions (Daniel 1)

5. Await the reward of faithfulness (Daniel 6).

6. We learn it is best to confess sin early and sincerely instead of shifting blame (1 Samuel 15).

7. We learn not to toy with sin, because it will find us out (Judges 13—16).

8. We learn that our sin has consequences not only for ourselves but for our loved ones (Genesis 3)

9. Our good behavior has rewards for us and those around us (Exodus 20:5–6).

In summary, the Old Testament allows us to learn how to love and serve God, and it reveals more about God’s character. It shows through repeatedly fulfilled prophecy why the Bible is unique among holy books—it alone is able to demonstrate that it is what it claims to be: the inspired Word of God. In short, if you have not yet ventured into the pages of the Old Testament, you are missing much that God has available for you.

New Years Resolutions from God

Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. • The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. • Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy. • But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.—Romans 13:11-14

In yesterday’s post I talked about making new years resolutions and the importance of following through on them. If you thought about making some resolutions for the new year but were unable to come up with any that were important to your life, then the verse above from Romans should help you.

To help you break them down into understandable, bite size chunks, here they are from the verse above.

1. Lay aside the deeds of darkness.
2. Put on the armor of light which is God’s word.
3. Behave properly with no carousing or being drunk.
4. Do not involve yourself with sexual promiscuity and sensuality.
5. Do not behave with strife or jealousy.
6. Put on the Lord Jesus Christ by becoming a Christian.
7. Make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.

I am certain that if you follow through on keeping these resolutions you will find yourself blessed beyond measure and having a peace that passes all understanding. Remember, God is there to guide you and bless you if you will let Him.

Our Sins Are Covered By His Blood

“Come now, let us reason together,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.”—Isaiah 1:18

Our sins and imperfections, sinful thoughts, shameful motivations, and being unfaithful are covered by the blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We are made white as snow. Pure, clean and freshly renewed. In Christ we can be made to “measure up”. Not by our own work but instead by His sacrifice on the cross.

We might stumble and fall over and over again but what matters is that our Lord has taken care of our sins and shortcomings. So it is in God’s eyes, by His great love and mercy which endures forever, we are made whole again through Jesus Christ.

Will You Let Jesus Christ Walk With You This Weekend?

Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.—Gal 5:24

As you start your weekend, ask yourself, “Do I belong to Jesus?” If your answer is yes then it’s important to set aside those worldly desires and fleshly passions.

I know personally that the flesh and it’s desires are a big stumbling block for all of us desiring to follow Jesus. There is hope for us in the Holy Spirit. Let Him lead you through your weekend and then on Monday you can look back and say to our Lord, “Thank you for the power of your Holy Spirit and helping me walk in your way.”

Satan loses again and your faith in Jesus Christ, our Lord, continues to grow. Blessings to you this weekend.

What’s The Goal of Your Worship? To Glorify God?

He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol or swear deceitfully. He shall receive blessing from the LORD, and vindication from the God of his salvation. Such is the generation of those who seek Him, who seek Your face, O God of Jacob.—Psalm 24:4-6

Genuine worship requires a heart of faith and a disposition of obedience to God. It would be difficult for unbelievers to worship the Lord, because they don’t have the Holy Spirit and cannot understand spiritual things (1 Cor. 2:14). Nor does God find worship acceptable from believers who cling unrepentantly to sin (Ps. 66:18). Drawing near to Him requires clean hands and a pure heart, which is possible only through Jesus Christ (Ps. 24:4-6).

The goal of worship is to glorify God, and it begins with our attitude. We must come into His presence with a repentant and humble heart, a mind focused on Him, and a life that demonstrates obedience.

When You Are Feeling Overwhelmed Allow God To Comfort You

“May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace. Jesus gave his life for our sins, just as God our Father planned, in order to rescue us from this evil world in which we live. All glory to God forever and ever! Amen.” — Galatians 1:3-5

Many think that when God comforts us, our troubles should go away. But if that were always so, people would turn to God only out of a desire to be relieved of pain and not out of love for him. We must understand that being comforted can also mean receiving strength, encouragement, and hope to deal with our troubles. The more we suffer, the more comfort God gives us.

If you are feeling overwhelmed, allow God to comfort you. Remember that every trial you endure will help you comfort other people who are suffering similar troubles.

To achieve the comfort and peace we share with others in their time of trial, we can receive help through prayer to almighty God, our Father in heaven. In a similar post at https://lifereference.wordpress.com, the author describes the necessity of earnest prayer to our Father given in private and not in public. Take a moment to read this post for additional enlightenment.