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Paradoxes in the Bible
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
1 Corinthians 1:21
1 Corinthians 1:25
1 Corinthians 1:26-29
1 Corinthians 3:18
1 Corinthians 4:10
1 Corinthians 6:4
1 Corinthians 6:8-10
1 Corinthians 12:4
1 Corinthians 12:10-11
More on Heaven
If you are searching for the Truth, go to God's Word. If you know that your life is missing something, but you do not know what is wrong, go to God's Word. Let Him talk to you. You may find some amazing answers!
The more that you trust God, the less you trust yourself. [Carl Hudson].
The closer you come to God, the more you are aware of your unworthiness. [Carl Hudson]
Paradoxes in the Bible
Written and compiled by: HIS SERVANT
Scripture verses taken from: [KJV] King James Version
Yelliow bold italics is Jesus’ Words.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. [KJV]
Written and Compiled by:
His servant, Connie Kramer
Revised from original 10-2015
THIS BOOK IS NOT COPYRIGHTED,
AND IS NEVER TO BE COPYRIGHTED.
This book is free and not to be sold.
IT MAY BE USED BY “WHOSOEVER”
TO EDIFY THE CHURCH, AND TO
HONOR AND GLORIFY GOD.
I always try to make understanding God’s Word as easy as I possibly can for all. God will truly bless your efforts as you strive to learn more about Him. All praise and glory be to the One and Only, Almighty God!
Jesus said “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3). What does it mean to be ‘born again’? When we are born physically (of our mother), this is our ‘first birth.’ Your second birth comes the moment you truly accept Jesus as your Saviour. You cannot lie to God!
John 1:12-13 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. (KJV) . . . Jesus has this power! You can be God’s child! But. Jesus said you can’t even “see” Heaven without being ‘born again.’ If we call on the Name of the Lord, we shall be saved. Acts 2:21 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved. [KJV]
Romans 10:9-10 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (KJV)
Salvation is available to ALL people.
Salvation (eternal life in Heaven) can be accessed by anyone! It is not something you buy, not something you work for; it is a “gift”! God made salvation so simple that even a young child could understand and accept it; yet the more education a person has, or the older he is, the harder it is to reach him (or her). God loves you! He does not want you to go to Hell; yet if you refuse to accept the “Gift” of His Son, which is eternal life, you most certainly will end up there. Have you received God’s Gift?
If you believe and accept Jesus as your personal Saviour, you can claim ALL the wonderful Promises of God by faith. If you reject Jesus, God promises that He will GIVE to you eternal or second death (Hell). See Matthew 13:49-50; 26:41, 46; John 3:15-18, 36; Romans 6:23; Rev. 20:11-15; 21:8. There IS a Hell! http://www.judgmentcoming.org/j_c_hell_is_it_there.htm
A GREAT PARADOX
The doctrine of the Trinity is mysterious, to say the least! It is a paradox (puzzle) to many.
The word TRINITY is not found in Scripture, but neither is Rapture, Substitution or Millennium; yet the Bible clearly teaches ALL these truths!
The teachings involved in the doctrine of the Trinity are: (1.) God is one. There is but one God (Deut. 6:4; 1 Kings 8:60; Isaiah 44:6; Mark 12:29, 32; John 10:30). (2.) The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are three entirely distinct Persons; yet these three Persons make up ONE God! We do NOT worship three Gods! We worship one triune God. (3.) Jesus was 100% Man, 100% God, and IS truly God. (4.) The Holy Spirit is also a distinct, divine Person. (5.) All three Persons are involved in our salvation.
Matthew 3:16-17 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:  And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. [KJV] . . . All three Persons of the Trinity are present and active in this Passage. God the Father speaks; God the Son is baptized; God the Holy Spirit descends on Jesus. God is ONE, but is three Persons at the same time. We simply cannot understand this mystery, but we must believe it in faith.
2 Corinthians 13:14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. [KJV] . . . This blessing petitions all three Members of the Trinity: God the Father, God the Son (our Lord Jesus Christ), and God the Holy Spirit. All the advantages which Christ of His free grace has purchased for us; the Father out of His free love has intended; and the Holy Spirit gives and applies.
1 Peter 1:2 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. [KJV] . . . All Members of the Trinity work to bring about our salvation. We accredit our salvation to God the Father for choosing us; to God the Son (Jesus) for redeeming us with His precious Blood, and to God, the Holy Spirit for sanctifying us (setting us apart for God) when He came to abide in us forever. God’s children have a living hope in our Triune God, to strengthen and comfort in all our affliction, and to enable us to win over difficulties.
Other Scripture references on the Trinity: Genesis 1:26; 3:22; Isaiah 6:3; 6:8; 11:2-3; 42:1; 48:16; 61:1-3; 63:9-10; Matthew 1:18; 1:20; 3:11; 3:16; 12:18; 12:28; 28:19; Mark 1:8; Luke 1:35; 3:16; 3:22; 4:1; 4:14; 4:18; John 1:32-33; 3:34-35; 7:39; 14:16-17; 14:26; 15:26; 16:7; 16:13-15; 20:22; Acts 1:2; 1:4-5; 2:33; 10:36-38; Romans 1:3-4; 8:9-11; 8:26-27; 1 Cor. 2:10-11; 6:19; 8:6; 12:3-6; 2 Cor. 1:21-22; 3:17; 5:5; 13:14; Galatians 4:4; 4:6; Phil. 1:19; Col. 2:2; 2 Thes. 2:13-14; 2:16; 1 Tim. 3:16; Titus 3:4-6; Hebrews 9:14; 1 Peter 1:2; 3:18; 1 John 5:6-7; Rev. 4:8. Believe God! He cannot lie!
PARADOXES IN THE BIBLE
I have thought about doing a study on this subject for quite a while. With the help of the Lord, I will now search Scriptures for what SEEM to be paradoxical verses.
Just exactly what is a ‘paradox’? The dictionary gives us the following explanations:
PARADOX: (1.) A statement contrary to common belief. (2.) A statement that seems contradictory, absurd or unbelievable, but may actually be true. (3.) Something inconsistent with common belief or experience; or that has contradictory qualities. (4.) A statement that seems to contradict itself, yet is true. ‘Contradictory’ means opposed, contrary, incompatible, inconsistent, or argumentative.
I hope we both learn much in this study. May the Holy Spirit help and teach us. Amen.
Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. [KJV] . . . This verse in definitely a paradox in this time in which we live. As I look around, I see fewer and fewer people who “fear the Lord.” These words really do oppose the majority of common beliefs, but they are true! In today’s world, with computers and more and more people going to college, knowledge is plentiful, but wisdom is truly scarce. Let me tell you what I think the meaning of ‘knowledge’, ‘understanding’ and ‘wisdom’ is.
Knowledge is the accumulation or having (knowing) facts. It is good to go to school and learn! Understanding is comprehending (realizing what those facts mean). And wisdom is applying those facts to your life. Wisdom is far more than just storing up a vast amount of knowledge. It is our basic attitude (approach) that affects every situation in life. The main basis of knowledge is to “fear the Lord,” or to honor, revere and respect God; to live in amazement of His power, and to obey His Word. Faith in God should be what controls our understanding the world, our attitudes, our words and our actions. Only when we truly trust God, will He make us truly “wise.”
So, who are “fools”? These are people who have NO true wisdom, but who trust and follow their own abilities. Fools have NO respect or reverence for Almighty God. We all are corrupt and willful, every one of us! We all need instruction. God’s Holy Word is our instruction Book! It tells us what we should and should not do! We should allow God’s Divine Truths and commands be most honorable. We should value them, and allow them to teach us to be truly “wise.”
Proverbs 13:7 There is that maketh himself rich, yet hath nothing: there is that maketh himself poor, yet hath great riches. [KJV] . . . This is a paradox that seems unbelievable or absurd. There are indeed some people who really are poor; yet they act as if they were rich. They covet
what those around them have, so they go deeply in debt to obtain those worldly treasures. This is sin! And shameful! The end result will be disaster, for it will end accordingly. It is not a sin to be poor! Jesus was poor! Jesus did not even have a place to lay His head (Matthew 8:20). The sin is to covet (desire, yearn for, lust after) things you know you can’t afford. God plainly tells us to be content with what we have (1 Timothy 6:6-8). God has promised to supply ALL our needs (NOT wants); this includes food, drink and clothing. If we are wise, we will content with what God has supplied.
Going back to the last part of Proverbs 13:7; there are some people who are very wealthy yet they act like they are poor! Are these people grateful to God? Are these people just in their attitude toward their wealth? Are these people reaching out to those less fortunate than themselves? There are many hypocrites (poor and rich), lacking in love and the fear of the Lord. But, let’s consider one thought: how many Christians, who are blessed with spiritual riches; yet when you hear them talk, you would think they were as poor as a church mouse. They doubt and worry and complain. They make their soul poor.
Matthew 10:39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This paradoxical verse seems to argue against itself. But . . . it is a positive AND negative statement of the same truth: clinging to and/or chasing after things in this life here on Earth may cause us to forfeit the best from Christ . . . in this world and in the next. The more we love this life’s compensations (leisure, power, popularity, financial security, fame, possessions), the less we see how void and superficial they really are. The best way to enjoy this present life, is to turn loose of our greedy grip on earthly rewards. When we do this, we are free from our bond of lust to follow Christ, and enjoy the many spiritual treasures He so graciously gives to us. And when we believe and trust in Him, we will inherit eternal life and begin at once to experience the vast benefits of following our Lord, Jesus Christ. Those who are best prepared for the life to come, are those who are not tied to this present life.
Those who truly follow Christ shall not see much kindness from a greedy, me-me world. Our reward shall come from Almighty God in our future life. Let us boldly confess Christ as Saviour and Lord, and show love to Him and God’s children in all things.
Matthew 16:25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. [KJV]. . . Jesus’ Words. This paradox is contrary to common belief. The probability of losing their lives was very real for the disciples of Christ. True discipleship involves real commitment. It means pledging our whole existence to the service of Christ. If we try to save our physical life from pain, discomfort or death, we may endanger losing our true eternal life. When we give our lives in service to Christ, we discover the true aim of living. When we follow Jesus in obedience and duty, we shall also follow Him to glory. We must walk the same way Christ walked, we must allow His Spirit to lead us, and where ever He leads, we must follow. Self-denial is a very hard lesson; but our Lord would not ask this of us if He Himself did not practice it, (to redeem us, and to teach us).
If we take on the precious Name of Christ (Christian), we must be a credit to Him. We must follow Christ in the work and duty of a disciple, no matter where it leads us. Yes, man can indeed hurt us bodily . . . and mentally, but he can NEVER touch our soul! That belongs to God!
If all worldly things are worthless when we compare them with eternal life, shouldn’t this be an effective argument with respect to the soul and its state of never-ending happiness or misery! But . . . is it? Thousands lose their souls for the most pointless or minor gain, or the most useless enjoyment; and many from mere foolishness caused by laziness and/or carelessness. There are many ‘reasons’ why people forsake Christ. They simply allow Satan to ‘buy’ their soul! Yet to God, one soul is worth more than all the world.
His children are most precious to Him. Christ Jesus knew the price of souls, for He redeemed them, with a humongous price . . . His life’s Blood! The dying unbelieving transgressor cannot purchase one hour’s relief for his perishing soul. Oh! That people would learn to rightly value their souls, and know that Christ is the only One who can save them. If you do not know Jesus as your Saviour and Lord, please consider that Only Jesus can ever place your soul in Heaven. If you do know Him as your Saviour and Lord, tell someone this very day!
Mark 8:35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. Again, this paradox is completely conflicting to what most people believe! This verse is similar to Matthew 16:25.
We should be willing to lose our lives for the sake of the Gospel. We should be, but are we? What Jesus is trying to tell us in this verse is that NOTHING, not even life itself . . . can compare to what we gain with Christ. Jesus wants us to willingly and joyfully choose to follow Him rather than to lead a life of sin and self-satisfaction. He wants us to know we cannot control our own destiny. He wants us to let Him direct every aspect of our lives. If you take time to think about it, this makes very good sense. As the Creator of all things, Christ Jesus knows far better than we do what is best for us. He simply asks that we submit unto Him, and let Him take control of our life. If you have never tried this, you have no idea how much peace and joy that will come to your soul! Submit is a word that most people don’t really want to discuss. It simply means to cooperate voluntarily. When you cooperate with Jesus, great and wonderful things happen in your life! Trust Him!
Consider eternal happiness in Heaven with Jesus! If by chance we would lose our life here on Earth for serving our Lord and spreading His Gospel; the thought of knowing we have eternal bliss awaiting us is enough to make up for the loss of life itself. The gain of the whole world and all its possessions, will not make up for the ruination of your soul.
Luke 17:33 Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. Jesus warned His followers (then and now) over and over again, against false security. We are to abandon (give up) the prominence and passion of this world so we can be ready for Christ’s Return. His Return will happen suddenly, and when He comes, there will be no second chances. Some will be taken to be with Him; the rest will be left behind. Are you ready for Jesus to come at the Rapture? Will you hear your name called, and go to meet Him in the clouds of the air? Or will you be left behind?
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words. [KJV] . . . This Passage is paradoxical because most people refuse to believe it. Do you ever wonder what will happen to you after you die? I am quite sure that you will agree that you and every other living being will most definitely die. Whether you are a child of God or not, you know all living things will die!
Physical death is NOT the end of the story for God’s children! Every human being has an eternal soul! That soul will live forever, in one of two places! God’s children will live in Heaven with Him some day. The Bible very plainly states that death is not termination, but instead germination for believers in God’s Son, Jesus!
When Christ returns at the Rapture, all TRUE believers (dead and alive) will be joined together, never to suffer or die again. There is comfort for the relations and friends of those who die in the Lord. We grieve over the loss of these loved ones, but we grieve for OUR loss. They have gained Heaven! We cannot grieve for that! We should not be too extreme in our sorrows over those who go to be with the Lord; for this would be too much like those who have no hope of a better life. Death is feared because it is an unknown thing. We know little about our state after death. But the doctrines of the resurrection and the second coming of Christ, should give us great comfort.
The Rapture (1 Thes.4:13-18) give us full assurance we will experience immense happiness. All the saints shall meet, and remain together for ever. We will be one big, happy family; and we will always be in perfect harmony! We will never fight or argue, or have bad feelings toward one another.
But the main happiness and joy of Heaven is that we will be with the Lord. We will see Him, touch Him, love Him Face to face, live with Him, and enjoy His Presence for ever.
When Jesus comes in those clouds, we will go up there to join Him. We will receive new bodies (like His, Phil.3:21) that will never sin again! How I long for that! No matter how hard I try not to, I sin . . . in action (or non-action), in words, and in thoughts! I can’t imagine not doing something to displease or hurt God; but I long for that day!
We should always comfort and support one another, and never weaken or deaden another’s spirit. Our sins are blotted out, washed clean by the Blood of Jesus, we are made righteous by Jesus. Let us praise and magnify His Holy Name! Let us joyfully look to the day that we will be with Him forever!
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This verse is a paradox because there are many like Nicodemus who can’t or won’t try to understand. “How can this be” they ask! To them, this is absurd!
God’s Kingdom is not just for the Jews, it is for anyone who is personally “born again.” The Kingdom is personal, not national or ethnic. To enter the Kingdom, requires repentance and spiritual rebirth.
John 1:12-13 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. [KJV] . . . Only by believing and accepting Jesus can you become a child of God! Only by believing and accepting Jesus can you be “born again!” This is NOT a physical birth, like when we came from our mother’s womb. This is a SPIRITUAL birth that comes when we trust Jesus as our Saviour and Lord. This is NOT a doctrine I made up; this is what God plainly states in His Word (the Bible).
Jesus tells us that God’s Kingdom has already begun in the hearts of believers (Luke 17:21). It will be fully realized when Jesus returns again to judge the world and stamp out evil forever (Rev. 21; Rev. 22).
If you are not a believer in Jesus, are you concerned about your soul and its salvation? Our Saviour says it is necessary to have this new birth. Birth is the beginning of life! To be “born again” is to begin to live anew, to have a new nature, a new standard of conduct, new affections, new goals. Our first birth placed us in corruption. We were “shapen in iniquity” (Psalm 51:5); therefore we must be made new creatures. We must be completely different from what we were before, simply we because we are not the same as we were before. This new birth comes from Heaven, from Almighty God Himself! This new birth is a tremendous change, made in the heart of a sinner, by the awesome power of the Holy Spirit. Some thing is done IN us, and FOR us, which we cannot do for ourselves. This new life shall last for ever. We cannot expect any benefit by or from Christ, unless we trust in Him to give us this new birth. We must have this new birth for our happiness in this life, and in eternity. We are not to question this. Let us instead, consider the holiness of God, and our depraved nature. God sets happiness before us; it is our decision to accept or reject it!
The things of the Spirit of God are foolishness to the natural man (unbelievers). Many think that if they cannot prove something, they just will not believe it! Christ’s Truths shows the foolishness of those who refuse to believe them. Christ Jesus is able to reveal the will of God to us; for He came down from Heaven, and yet He is in Heaven; for He is none other than God Himself! This knowledge comes from above, and can be received by faith alone. You cannot slight the disease of sin, or the only cure, which is Christ. You do NOT want to hear the words: “Depart from me, I know you not, ye workers of iniquity.” Trust Jesus today!
John 6:51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This verse is ‘unbelievable’ by most people! A paradox for sure! HOW can we “eat” Jesus’ flesh? To eat “living bread” simply means to accept Christ into our hearts and lives. We must entrust ourselves to His care, we must submit or surrender to Him (cooperate voluntarily), and we must unite with Him. To unite with Christ means: (1.) to believe in and accept His death for us (the sacrifice of His flesh), (2.) to believe He was raised from the dead (His resurrection), (3.) to dedicate ourselves to Him (live in obedience to Him), by depending on Him to teach and guide us through the power of the Holy Spirit.
If we ‘eat’ the “Living Bread” we shall never die. It doesn’t matter what color you are, what nation you are from, what language you speak, what horrible sins you committed! God has NO favorites. He loves all people who come to Him through Jesus. This “Bread” is available to ALL who repent and believe in Him.
John 6:53-56 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.  Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.  For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.  He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. As verse 6:51 is paradoxical, so too, are these verses. This Passage goes a bit further. To “eat flesh and drink blood” sounds savage and cannibalistic. Jesus was speaking to Jews here. The idea of drinking any blood, especially human blood, was repulsive to the religious leaders. The law did not allow it (Leviticus 17:10-11). Jesus was NOT talking about His literal Blood. He was saying that His life had to become their own, but they would not accept this. The Flesh and Blood of the Son of Man, picture the Redeemer; Christ and Him crucified, and the redemption arranged by Him. All the benefits of redemption are ours through belief and acceptance of Him; pardon of sin, acceptance by and friendship with God, access to the Throne of grace, the promises of the covenant, and eternal life. These are the “flesh and blood” of Christ. They were purchased by the breaking of His Body, and the shedding of His Blood. They are meat and drink to our souls. Eating this Flesh and drinking this Blood mean believing in Christ, and partaking of Christ and all His benefits by faith. The soul, like the body, has its needs and wants. Eating His Flesh and drinking His Blood feeds our hungry soul! It calms our conscience, and promotes holiness. When we meditate on the cross of Christ, it gives life and meaning to our repentance, love and gratitude. Our soul lives by Jesus (His Flesh and Blood), just as our bodies live by food. We live by Him, and because of Him. We are members of the ‘body’ and He is the Head. He is the Vine, we are the branches. Because He lives, we shall also live!
John 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This is paradoxical because it is NOT consistent with common belief. If Jesus starts out with 100 sheep, He’ll come through on the other side with 100 sheep (Matthew 18:11-13). There are those who believe that a person can lose their salvation once they are saved. This is only one of many verses that state this is not so. http://www.hisservants.org/books_eternal_security_OSAS.html
As a shepherd protects his sheep, Jesus protects His people from eternal harm. This verse is speaking of the soul, not the body. We, as believers, can expect to suffer on Earth (physically). But, Satan CANNOT harm our souls NOR can he take away our eternal life with God. If you choose to follow Jesus, He will give you everlasting safety. We, as the ‘sheep” in Jesus’ care
should live in a happy state of mind. We have heard and believed His Word, we follow Him as His loving and faithful disciples, and not one of us shall perish in everlasting destruction (Hell)! We are safe and secure in the Arms of Christ Jesus, our Shepherd!
John 10:30 I and my Father are one. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. There are cults who absolutely refuse to believe this! To them, this is a paradox! This is the clearest statement of Jesus’ divinity that He ever made! Jesus and His Father; Almighty God in Heaven, are ONE! They are not the same Person, but they are one in essence, nature, quality, perfection, holiness, love, mercy, fairness, goodness, and character. They are always in perfect harmony! They are always in agreement, in every situation! If we have seen Jesus, we have seen the Father (John 14:9). Jesus is not simply a Good Man and a Great Teacher; He is God! His claim to be God was unmistakable. He claimed Divine power and perfection equally with God, the Father. Since the Son and the Father are one, He is most definitely able to defend His sheep against all their enemies (John 10:28).
John 12:25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This verse is similar to Matthew 10:39; 16:25; and Mark 8:35. It is paradoxical because, like them, it seems to argue against itself.
When we commit our lives to Christ, we must really love to live for Him and love to serve Him! We should actually ‘hate’ worldly living. This does not mean that we desire death, or that we are careless or destructive with the life God has given us; but that we would be willing to die for Christ, if by doing so, it would glorify our Lord Jesus. We must not be self-centered. We must not strive for any and all advantages, security, wealth and/or pleasure. We must serve God with a loving heart; freely and ever so willingly. We must turn control of our lives over to Christ Jesus if we desire eternal life in the future, and genuine peace and joy here and now.
Let us serve Jesus, and follow His holy example.
John 13:10 Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit: and ye are clean, but not all. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This verse seems to be contradictory. WHY did Christ wash His disciples’ feet? Because He wanted to express the value of spiritual washing! He was showing them that the soul needed to be cleansed from the filth and pollutions of sin. Jesus did so many things, which even His disciples of today do not know the meaning. Sometimes His loving kindness came across as seemingly sharp answers. All those, and those only, who are spiritually washed by Christ, have a part in Christ. All of these, Christ owns and saves, and He justifies (declares not guilty) and sanctifies them (sets apart as God’s children). Peter does more than submit to Christ; he begs to be washed by Christ. How earnest he was for the purifying grace of the Lord Jesus. He wanted the full effect, including his hands and his head! We, like Peter, should desire to have our whole, made pure. The TRUE believer is in this way washed, when he accepts and receives Christ for his salvation. We should cleanse ourselves from the daily guilt of sin, and be ever so careful against anything that defiles. We should be very careful. Let us always remember yesterday’s forgiveness, so we can be strengthened against today’s temptation.
As you see from the last part of this verse, Jesus knew that not every one present were spiritually clean. He knew that Judas would betray Him. He knew that the devil had control of Judas.
John 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This paradox seems to be contradictory! HOW can we possibly out-do Jesus?
Jesus did some amazing miracles! Bringing back to life a dead person is about as amazing as you can get! So, what is the “greater works” that believers in Christ will do? I think it is bringing the Gospel to lost souls in the power of the Holy Spirit. Think of Simon Peter, who turned tail and ran, denying our Lord three times; then at the day of Pentecost, preached with superb boldness and authority and won 3000 souls over to Christ! Think of all those who preach a crucified, risen, and glorified Christ; a Saviour who will return. Think of all the lost souls that are won to Christ by the power of His awesome Holy Spirit! What do you think is better? Christ healing the body of a sick or maimed person? Or winning a lost soul to Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit? Is not the eternal soul worth more than a fleeting, short-lived bodily life?
It is still Christ Jesus who is working miracles yet this day! And, my friend, if you are a believer in Jesus, He is working those miracles through you, by His Holy Spirit! What a wonderful Saviour and Lord we have! He will abide with His followers to the end of time; and His gifts and graces will encourage our hearts. The gift of the Holy Spirit is granted to the disciples (followers) of Christ, and not to the world. This is a benefit God graciously gives to His children. This source of holiness, happiness, and power comes only from the Holy Spirit of God, and will abide with every believer for ever.
John 14:20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. Some cult people say this verse is absurd! I say it is marvelous!
I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. These simple, one syllable words are profound! I am in my Father . . . this is unity of the Godhead! You in Me . . . this is salvation! We cannot be saved unless we are “In Christ.” We are either ‘In Him’ by faith, or we are ‘out of Him’ because we e reject Him and His salvation; preferring to stay ‘in our sins.’ I in you . . . this is sanctification! TRUE believers are united to God the Father and God the Son because Christ lives ‘in us’ (by His Holy Spirit), thus setting us apart for God’s use!
John 17:21-23 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words.
These verses tell us the SAME thing as John 14:20 above . . . that Jesus is joined with the Father, and we are joined with Him; thus, God the Father, God the Son and repentant sinners are united together by the Holy Spirit. How wonderful this is! Praise God! This is possible only through Christ Jesus!
John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This verse also is about unity. I once had a cult preacher come here to the house, and demand to know how this could be! He thought this was absolutely absurd. He did not have the Holy Spirit living within him, that was for sure! (Romans 8:9). Christ Jesus is the Vine, the one and only true Vine. The union of His human and Divine natures, and the fullness of the Spirit that is in Him, symbolize the root of the vine, which is made fruitful by moisture from a rich and fertile soil. Believers are the branches of this Vine. The root is unseen. Our life is hid with Christ. This root supports the vine, and disperses nourishment to it. The branches of this Vine are many, yet, they all join into the one root. Believers, like the frail, brittle branches of the Vine, are weak, and unable to stand on their own unless they are supported. God, the Father is the Husbandman. There has never been any gardener who is so wise and so watchful about His vineyard, as God is about His church. He wants us to be fruitful. From a vine we look for grapes, and from a Christian we look for the “fruits of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22-23). We must love and honor God, love our brothers and sisters in Christ, and do good. This is bearing fruit. We must abound in what is good, and glorify our Lord! We must abide in Christ, and we must have union with Him by faith. We must constantly depend on Christ, and have fellowship with Him!
Any time our faith flounders, any time we have the slightest doubt, our affection to God declines. Corruptions then revive, and our peace and joy in Christ drops to a dangerously low level. If we do not “abide in Christ,” we may flourish for awhile in our outward appearance, but we will not amount to a ‘hill of beans’ in God’s eyes. Let us strive to grow more fruitful in actions, words and deeds, so that our joy in Him and in His salvation be full.
When we turn our life over to Jesus, and live by His standards, He will NOT leave us; He is there with us. He will be in us, and He will show Himself to us. We don’t need to know what the future holds to have faith in God. Our faith in God makes us feel secure about the future. Only those who see Christ with an eye of faith, shall see Him for ever. Unbelievers won’t see Him until His Second Coming (Zec.14:1-5; Rev.19:11-21); but His followers have fellowship with Him, even in His absence. This is a mystery that will be fully known only in Heaven. If we have sincere love for Christ in our heart, we will obey Him. God not only loves obedient believers, but He takes pleasure in loving them. This is a privilege that is confined to those whose faith works by love; and whose love to Jesus makes them want to keep His commandments.
John 17:9 I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This verse is a paradox because a so many people today think that everybody will go to Heaven, including some in my own family. This is NOT so! NOT everyone will go to Heaven! In fact, just the opposite is true. Jesus very plainly states that only a “few” will ever enter Heaven’s gates. Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. Only a “few” will make it.
John 17:9 is stating a very sobering truth. Jesus will not, does not, pray for unbelievers! He died for them! He died for the sins of the world, but He does NOT pray for them. He prays only for His own; those who have come to Him by faith. Christ Jesus prays for all those that are His. This is a great comfort and satisfaction to all TRUE believers (God’s children, John 1:12-13; 1 John 3:10). We rely upon Christ. We believe that He; all that He is and has, all that He has said and done, all that He is doing and will continue to do, are of God. Christ prays for His people alone; not for the world at large, or those who continue to reject Him as Saviour (unbelievers).
TRUE children of God: http://www.godcannotlie.org/true_children_of_god.htm
Does this mean that all unbelievers should be discouraged by the Saviour’s words in this verse? NO! Absolutely not! The Bible plainly tells us ALL are sinners! All believers were at one time in their life an ‘unbeliever.’ They had not yet believed and accepted Jesus as their Saviour and Lord! The moment you open your heart’s door to Jesus, you then belong to Him! He makes you one of God’s children! Once that happens, He will pray for you too!
Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. [KJV] . . . This is a paradox because in today’s time, people believe there are MANY roads to Heaven, but according to this verse and many others in the Bible, that is not so. One very close to me, someone in my family, brazenly tells me: “Your way is not the only way!” I have tried, unsuccessfully to tell her that it is not ‘my way,’ it is God’s way! When I speak of Hell to her, she says: “A loving God would not send me to Hell.” In fact, I wrote a Bible study booklet with that title because of her. www.godcannotlie.org/booklet_a_loving_god_wouldn't_send_me_to_hell.htm
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. If you want to go to Heaven (where God the Father is), you must, you have to go through God’s only begotten Son, Jesus the Christ!
1 John 5:9-12 If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. 10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. 11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. [KJV] . . . TRUE Christians have seen their guilt and misery because of their sin, realizing their need of a Saviour. We have felt the power of the Word of God and doctrine of Christ; humbling us, healing us and comforting our soul. We have received a new heart and outlook on life. We are not the same person we were before Jesus entered our life. What makes the unbeliever’s sin so awful? It is the sin of unbelief. They refuse to believe what God states about His Son! They actually call God a “Liar.” Anyone who refuses to trust and honor Christ as the Son of God, and refuses to rely on His atonement and intercession as High Priest, or to obey Him as King; is dead (spiritually) in sin, and under condemnation (judgment to Hell, John 3:18). I do NOT teach what I want to teach, but what God so plainly states in His Word. I teach the Bible! And the Bible says there is only ONE Way to Heaven, and that is faith in Christ Jesus, the Son of God.
Romans 5:10 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. [KJV] . . . Most people would not consider themselves to be God’s enemy! But the Bible says that if you do NOT believe and accept Jesus as your Saviour, you are NOT “justified” (Romans 5:1, 9). You are ‘guilty’ in the courts of Heaven. You are an enemy of God! God’s Words, not mine!
Romans 8:8-9 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. [KJV] . . . Did you ever wonder: “Am I really a Christian?” A TRUE Christian is anyone who has the Spirit of God living in him or her. And, if you have sincerely trusted Christ for your salvation, and acclaimed Him as your Lord, then the Holy Spirit has come into your life. He abides within you. You ARE a Christian! There is no specific feeling. But evidence of His arrival will be soon known! You will BELIEVE that Jesus Christ is God’s Son! You will KNOW you have eternal life that comes through Him (1 John 5:5)! You will begin to change your actions, your words, your thoughts! You will act as Christ instructs (Romans 8:5; Galatians 5:22-23)! You will find that you have help in your daily problems, and when you pray (Romans 8:26-27)! You will be empowered with strength and boldness to serve God and do His will (Acts 1:8; Romans 12:6)! You will be given a ‘gift’ to help build up His church (Ephes. 4:12-13)! You will not have the desire to sin as you did before! You will experience peace and joy in your life that you never knew was possible! Having the Spirit of Christ means having a change of mind; like the mind that is in Christ Jesus!
Romans 8:29-30 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.  Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. [KJV] . . . Election (choosing) and predestination (being pre-decided) are paradoxical subjects, to say the least. Did God decide, before He ever started to create the Universe, to choose certain people to receive His gift of salvation? And did He also decide to omit some people and send them to Hell instead? What is very clear, is that God’s purpose for people was not an afterthought! He settled it “before the foundation of the world.” He created people in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27), so He could fellowship with us. We are to love, serve and honor God. If you have believed in Christ, you can rejoice because God has always known you! God’s eternal love, wisdom and power are supreme. He will guide and protect you until you stand in His Presence in His Home (Heaven).
Whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son. Whom He did predestinate, them He also called. “Called” means summoned or invited. It means we forsake self and the world and go to God, through Christ. Eternal life in Heaven is our end result! We flee sin and vanity and run to the grace and holiness of Jesus! God’s love then rules in our hearts. Whom He called, them He also justified. Understand: NO one is justified except those that are called. If you REJECT God’s calling, you live under the wrath of God. Whom He justified, them He also glorified. The power of sin and corruption is broken when you accept the calling, the invitation! The guilt of sin is removed in justification (Romans 5: 1, 9). Because of your acceptance of the call, nothing can come between your soul and glory. This greatly encourages our faith and hope!
So, does God choose some for Heaven? And others for Hell? I don’t think so! My own humble opinion is this: I really do think that God chooses everyone! I believe that the invitation goes out to WHOSOEVER! That means you, If you accept God’s conditions. But I also think that God knows who will turn to Jesus, and who will not! See Parable of the Marriage Feast in the Parables of Jesus. http://www.hisservants.org/books_parables_of_jesus.htm
Ephesians 1:4-5 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:  Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will. [KJV] . . . Another paradoxical verse! That God “chose us in him” (Jesus) emphasizes that salvation depends completely on God. We are NOT saved because we are ‘good’ and deserve it! We are saved because of God’s awesome grace! Because of our faith, God freely gives us eternal life! The GIFT of salvation! Nothing we can DO, can influence God’s decision to save us. He saves us according to His purpose, His plan and His pleasure! There is NO way we can take credit for our salvation. We cannot say with pride: “Look what I did to earn salvation!”
Salvation is a tremendous mystery! It started in the eternal, timeless mind of God, long before we ever existed. This is hard to understand! To me, it is impossible to understand! But, because of our belief and acceptance of Christ, we are holy and blameless in God’s sight. God chose us, and like I already said, I believe God chooses everyone; and when we belong to Him through Christ Jesus, God looks at us as if we had never sinned. When He looks down on us, He doesn’t see our sin, He sees the precious Blood of His Son (1 Pet.1:18-19); and He will never turn His Back on that! All we can do is thank and praise Him for His wonderful love. This awesome
love picked this method of redemption. God spared not even His own Son, so that believers can hear, accept and embrace this salvation. This is the grace of God; rich, undeserved, and free, for “whosoever”!
John 6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. [KJV] . . . Jesus’ Words. This paradoxical verse is so very important! Some people argue that God chooses a person (election), period! Others will argue that a person chooses salvation (free will). So, who is right? This short verse has both the doctrine of election and free will! Notice: “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me” is a truth (election). Again, notice: “And him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” is also true! This is free will!
God the Father “gives” people to Christ; BUT these people must “COME” to Jesus! All those who come to Jesus are evidently those that God has given to Him. No one will come, until God’s grace has touched, and partially changed their heart. And once someone comes, they will never be cast out. Those willing to come have a holy, humbling manner, and God draws them close with His Word and His Spirit. Don’t worry about the doctrine of election and predestination! If you “come to Jesus” you are “elected” by God!
Romans 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. [KJV] . . . So many people, especially those with much education, cannot see how this can be ‘enough’ to be saved! They think: “I have to DO something!” YES! You do have to DO something! You simply have to BELIEVE in your heart by faith, that Jesus is who He says He is! And BELIEVE what the Bible says; that He was raised from the dead. He is alive! And once you believe this, you must “confess with your mouth that He is Lord! ” You CANNOT be a ‘closet Christian.’ You must tell others! If you DO this; you are saved! Plain and simple. God did not make salvation hard. It’s easy enough for a child to understand! God does not want you in Hell. He wants you in Heaven, with Him!
Our confession of Christ, and our life must be in agreement. Our “heart” (our entire personality and being) and our mouth must be in perfect harmony or we are a hypocrite! We cannot give God just ‘lip service.’ He expects love, truth and sincerity from our heart! Don’t say idle words that have no meaning to you. They MUST come from your heart or they are worth nothing! Remember: confession without heart-felt repentance and faith is self-deception or hypocrisy. On the other hand; faith without confession is cowardice! Think about it! If you have trusted Jesus as your Saviour and Lord, tell someone! If you are ashamed of Jesus, He will be ashamed of you (Mark 8:38). You don’t want that! Salvation is as close as your own mouth and heart. Don’t make it into something complicated! The believer shall never be sorry for his confident trust in the Lord Jesus. This kind of faith shall never make you ashamed before God. We ought to glory in this faith before all men.
1 Corinthians 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. [KJV] . . . Preaching a crucified and risen Christ, is the only way to get lost souls to Heaven. This is the total and substance of the Gospel. Christ crucified is the foundation of all our hopes! Christ raised again is the fountain of all our joys! It is by His death that we will live eternally! But this kind of preaching appears foolish to those on their way to destruction (Hell). The people looking for pleasure, the covetous, the proud and ambitious, see that this Gospel opposes their favorite worldly pursuits. But to anyone who receives this Gospel, it is a whole different story! By the Spirit of God, they see God’s wisdom and power in the doctrine. Human wisdom is foolishness; and is unable to find or keep the knowledge of God as the Creator. Because of this, it pleases God, by the foolishness of this preaching, to save them that believe. But, this preaching is not what could rightly be called ‘foolish preaching.’ But this type of preaching was, and is foolish to the wordly-wise. The Gospel of Jesus always was and always will be, foolishness to the vast majority of people.
This despised doctrine of salvation by faith in a crucified Saviour (God in human nature), and His purchasing the church with His own blood, is the only message that can save souls.
1 Corinthians 1:23 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; [KJV]
1 Corinthians 1:25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men. [KJV] . . . God is wiser than anyone anywhere! God’s greatest weakness is stronger than the strongest man’s greatest power.
1 Corinthians 1:26-29 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:  But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;  And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:  That no flesh should glory in his presence. [KJV] . . . God does indeed work in mysterious ways, and for that I am eternally grateful to Him! I dearly love these verses! They tell me, that even though I am a poor person, even though I am not a highly educated scholar, even though I am not wise in the world’s eyes, even though I am not the least bit famous, God chose me to be His child! To the world, I am weak, foolish, stupid and inferior; but to my wonderful God, I am His child whom He dearly loves! How wonderful this is!
No amount of human knowledge can replace or sidestep Christ’s work on the cross. If we had to work for our salvation, eternal life would be accessible only to the strong in body, or the intelligent and the well-educated ones. Simple, ordinary people, cripples, those who are retarded, or children would not have a chance to live in Heaven! If we had to buy our way to Heaven, only the extremely wealthy could access Heaven’s gates. But, since salvation is an out and out GIFT, something that God offers to everyone, we all can live in Heaven, . . . IF we choose to do so! All we need to do, is grab hold of that Gift by faith. A gift is not yours until you accept it! Have you accepted Jesus and the Gift of eternal life He has for you?
God did not choose philosophers, nor gifted speakers, nor men of wealth and power, to bring the Gospel of grace and peace to lost souls. Don’t get me wrong; there are some of these people who do belong to God . . . but . . . “not many” according to God! God uses average, every day people to serve the purposes of His glory. If God chooses a person to do a certain job, God will equip that person to do that job! I can testify to that! God is my Teacher! I give Him any and ALL the credit and glory! My husband said the other day: “I’m glad we’re poor (in this world), because it makes me know how rich we really are.” Thank You, Lord!
1 Corinthians 3:18 Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. [KJV] . . . This is truly a paradox in the world’s eyes. God very plainly tell us that “the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God.” (1 Cor. 3:19). This verse is not telling us not to get a good education. I have a little ‘bit of wisdom’ that I wrote in my Bible many years ago: “No man is uneducated who knows the Bible, and no one is truly educated who is ignorant of its teachings.”
Don’t neglect getting an education; learn, get knowledge; BUT, do NOT allow that worldly wisdom to hold you back from God. That is not wisdom at all, that is just extreme stupidity!
God’s way of thinking, His wisdom, is FAR more valuable to you, even though it may seem foolish to the world (1 Cor. 1:27). Don’t have such a high opinion of our own wisdom, that you neglect what is most wise, that being God and His Word! Don’t flatter yourself; for that is self deceit. TRUE Wisdom is belonging to Christ; trusting and obeying Him. Great blessings He will bestow to us when we trust and obey Him: eternal life, peace, joy, love, forgiveness; just to name a few!
1 Corinthians 4:10 We are fools for Christ's sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised. [KJV] . . . We have no reason to be proud and arrogant. All that we have, all that we are, all that we do, all that is good, we owe to the free grace of God. God snatches sinners from destruction by His sovereign grace alone, simply because that sinner humbled himself, repented (was truly sorry) of their sin, and trusted Jesus.
There are many eyes are upon believers; to see how we act in our daily walk with Christ, or how we react, when struggling with difficulties or temptations. “We are weak, but ye are strong.” All Christians are not exposed to the identical circumstances. Some suffer greater hardships than others. I remember a really good friend a few years back who was suffering from liver cancer. When we would visit him, it was Paul and I who were uplifted by this courageous man. We would go to cheer him, he cheered us instead! This was a deeply reverent man. This man loved the Lord. Yet he suffered terribly! He was weak, but the Lord made him strong, for he claimed the Promises of God. He knew the Lord would NEVER leave him, nor forsake him; and he knew that the Lord’s grace was sufficient for him. It was an honor to know such a godly man!
When we dedicate our life to Jesus, we look like fools to the world (unbelievers). But, if we are wise, and we consider just how short this earthly life is, compared to how long eternity is; we turn to Jesus to save us from eternal destruction (Hell). When we decide to be faithful to Christ Jesus, persecution and contempt could follow. So, knowing this, WHY follow Jesus? Jesus will never hide anything from you. He wants you to know what may happen if you follow Him. He also wants you to know what will happen if you REFUSE to follow Him, and that is that the wrath of God will abide on you . . . and your eternal destination will be HELL (John 3:15-18, 36). The disciples (followers) of Christ will suffer to some extent, some more than others, but the amazing thing is, that Jesus walks with us through ALL our difficulties. He NEVER leaves us to fend for ourselves. We must follow the example of Jesus, and do the will of the Lord. We must be content with Him, in Him, and for Him!
2 Corinthians 6:4 But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, [KJV] . . . If you are a child of God, YOU are a minister of God! If you are a child of God, you have a responsibility to reach out to those whom God has placed around you, whether it is your job, your community, your friends. If you are in prison, you must speak to those around you. The Gospel is God’s marvelous grace, sounding in our ears. The Gospel could be the day of salvation for some lost soul if we speak out. The Gospel is the One and only Way of salvation. We, as ministers of the Gospel are God’s servants. We need much patience inn afflictions. We need the grace of God, to arm us against temptations, so we can share the Gospel with pride an honor, and so we can tolerate people’s disapproval with patience. We, in ourselves, have and are nothing, but we possess all things in Christ.
2 Corinthians 6:8-10 By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; 9 As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; 10 As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things. [KJV] . . . Everything becomes SO different when we know Jesus! It’s a whole new world out there! He cares for us in spite of what the world thinks of us. We as God’s children, do not have to give in to public opinion and pressure. We can stand tall and faithful to God whether people praise us or condemn us. I truly think it is more dangerous for us to be praised than to be snubbed or condemned. Why? Because we might take the praise and glory for ourselves, when it belongs to God!
We can remain faithful, loving, forgiving, compassionate, active, joyous and content in the most difficult hardship, for we know the Lord is on our side! If you are God’s child, God will NEVER leave you nor forsake (abandon) you. Don’t let even the worst circumstances get you down; for God will give you sufficient grace to see you through. 2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. [KJV] . . . Jesus does NOT lie! I have claimed this Promise many times in past years, and He has ALWAYS come through for me!
And do NOT let what people think or expect of you, restrict your service to the Lord. Be firm and faithful as you stand bold and confident with Jesus. Don’t ever compromise His standards as you live your life.
If we preach the Gospel faithfully. And those that hear (or read) it, fully receive it, it will better the condition of even the poorest soul. Christians will now save what before they recklessly spent. Their time will be spent on useful things. They save and they gain by the Gospel; thus they are made rich, both for this world, and in the one to come. When I compare my life now, as a child of God, with my once sinful and depraved state, before I received the Gospel, I am RICH indeed! Tell someone about Jesus today!
2 Corinthians 12:4 How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. [KJV] . . . This paradox is not believed by very many. But, if it is in the Bible, it is true! Simple as that! You cannot believe only what you want to believe, and reject the rest as false.
There is no doubt that the apostle Paul is speaking of himself. We do not know whether God gave him a glimpse of heavenly things while his body was in a trance (as the ancient prophets), or whether his soul was separated from his body for a time, and taken up into Heaven; or whether Paul was taken up, body and soul into Heaven. Most men, then and now, would have written a book on what had happened. Paul simply pens a brief 21 words! Our minds are not capable to know the glory of this magnificent place! If we knew, many would make the choice to go there before God’s appointed time for them. Paul says so little in this verse, yet he says so very much! Let us build on our faith, hope and expectations of the glory that shall be revealed at the time God has planned. For now, let us be content with learning the Truth and will of God.
2 Corinthians 12:10-11 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. 11 I am become a fool in glorying; ye have compelled me: for I ought to have been commended of you: for in nothing am I behind the very chiefest apostles, though I be nothing. [KJV] . . . Any time we are strong in abilities and resources, we are tempted to do God’s work on our own. What is wrong with that? (1.) It can lead to pride. (2.) It may not be the way God wanted to do it.
I do not have too much trouble with this, simply because as I stated in 1 Corinthians 1:26-29, I owe everything to my Lord! When we KNOW we are weak, and we ALLOW God to fill us with HIS power, then we are stronger than we could ever be on our own! When we KNOW we do NOT have the knowledge, and we allow God to work through us, we become wiser than we could ever be on our own! When life’s hindrances, obstacles and set backs come, we must depend on God, completely! Only His power will make us strong and help us do His work.
Troubles are allowed by God, to teach us to pray (to depend on Him). He allows troubles to stay to teach us, so we continue in prayer and to teach us patience. Even though God does not take away our troubles and temptations, He gives us ample (sufficient) grace to see us through! God’s strength is made perfect in our weakness! It is this way that His grace is shown and magnified. When we are weak in ourselves, then we are strong in the Lord Jesus Christ! Any time that we feel weakness, we should RUN to Jesus, to receive strength from Him, and enjoy the abundant supply of Divine power and grace.
I am quite content in my weakness, for I know if I permit it, God’s power will work through me. BUT, I must never quench His Spirit or His power (1 Thes.5:19). I am weak! But, God is strong! I have learned to take all my problems to the Lord. I know there will be times that I will have to endure hardships, distress, insults and persecution, but I also know that no matter what comes my way, God will be there for me with His power, His grace, His wisdom and especially His love! I am strong only because of Christ Jesus!
Philippians 3:7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. [KJV] . . . When Paul spoke of gain, he was referring to his education, his reputation and his achievements. We must be very careful that we do not let past achievements or worldly possessions become so important that they stand in the way of our relationship with Jesus. Religion is useless, unless your heart is in it!
See Religion or Christ: http://www.hisservants.org/religion_or_christ_h_s.htm
Our commitment to Christ must be sincere or we are hypocrites! We may be well able to fool those around us, but we will NEVER fool the Lord! We must worship God in the strength and grace of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of Christ must be in us (Romans 8:9), and we must ALLOW Him to work in and through us, or we are not Christians! Our rejoicing in Christ Jesus must come from our heart and soul! Any outward performances and idle words is NOT enough to God! We must not glory nor trust in the flesh, or worldly things. The things Paul had counted gain, while a Pharisee (before he knew Christ), all those he now counted loss (nothing), when he compared them to Jesus! By faith in this Person of Jesus, came salvation. NOTHING or NO one else could accomplish this! Worldly enjoyments and privileges cannot hold a candle to what Jesus has to offer! They have NO merit whatsoever alongside of Jesus! True knowledge of Christ changes people! It changes their attitude and their heart. TRUE believers prefer Christ Jesus, knowing that it is far better to be without all worldly riches, than to be without Christ and His Word! Righteousness is provided for us in Jesus Christ, a complete and perfect righteousness (1 Cor.1:30). NO one has benefit by it, UNLESS they trust Christ. Faith is the God appointed way and means of applying this saving benefit. It is only by faith in the precious Blood of Jesus that we are saved! http://www.godcannotlie.org/true_children_of_god.htm
Are we willing to do or to suffer anything, to achieve the glorious resurrection of saints? Or do we cling to worldly things? And reject the awesome power of our Saviour and Lord? Which is more important to you? JESUS? Or worldly things like wealth, possessions, power and fame?
Revelation 6:16-17 And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: 17 For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? [KJV] . . . When I think of a paradox, this is the first Passage I think of. Remember what a paradox is: a statement that SEEMS contradictory, but when you carefullyn examine it, it is in fact true.
All through the New Testament, Jesus is called the Lamb. (John 1:29; 1 Pet.1:19; Acts 8:32; Rev.6:16; 7:9-10, 14, 17; 12:11; 14:1, 4; 15:3; 17:14; 19:7; 21:9, 14; 21:22-23; 21:27-22:1; 22:3).
The Lamb was a symbol of Christ in the Old Testament as well as the New Testament. (Gen.4:4; Ex.12:3; 29:38; Isa.16:1; 53:7; John 1:36; Rev.13:8).
Christ is also called the Lamb of God (John 1:29, 36). He was the Great Sacrifice of which all former sacrifices were only examples or symbols (Num.6:12; Lev.14:12-17; Isa.53:7; 1 Cor.5:7).
So, when you think of a lamb, what do you think of? Of a huge, vicious, unruly, irrational beast? NO! A lamb brings to mind a soft, cuddly, gentle, mild natured, lovable, little creature. SO . . . how can this meek Lamb get so angry that people will pray for the mountain fall on them to hide them from the wrath of the Lamb?
WHAT is wrath? It is anger, rage, fury and vengeance with a passion! YES! God is absolutely a God of LOVE! But . . . God is also a God of WRATH! God’s WRATH is brought on by His hating what is opposite of Him! Romans 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; [KJV] John 3:18-21 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. 21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God. [KJV]
WHY is Jesus the Lamb, so Angry?
All those (generals, kings, or ordinary people) who show no fear of God (reverence, respect, honor), and arrogantly boast of their unbelief will one day find that they were wrong. There will most certainly come a day when they will have to face God’s wrath. NO one who has ever rejected God or His Son, Christ Jesus, will be able to stand up to the day of His wrath!
Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? . . . NO one who denies or rejects Jesus (the Lamb), will be able to stand before Him! Grandeur, riches, valor, nor strength, will be able to support ANY one at this time! People shall know that it is God sitting on His Throne, and that He has caused this catastrophe. ALL human beings, great and small, will be terrified! They will BEG the mountains to fall on them so they don’t have to face the judgment of the Lamb. This will be the most pathetic and tragic prayer meeting ever! They will pray for death that will not come!
This vivid picture is NOT intended to frighten TRUE believers. For them, the Lamb is a gentle Saviour and Shepherd. But, ALL those generals, emperors, kings, well known celebrities, AND common folk, who previously showed NO fear of God and blatantly flaunted their unbelief and rejection of Christ will KNOW they were wrong (Isa.45:22-23; Phil.2:10-11), and that they will have to face God's wrath. NO ONE who has ever rejected Jesus can survive the day of His wrath, but those who belong to Christ will receive a reward rather than punishment. Do you belong to Christ???
Believe me . . . you do NOT want to feel God's wrath. http://www.hisservants.org/god%27s_holy_wrath_h_s.htm
Revelation 21:18 And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass. [KJV] . . . This is a paradox because it is hard to believe! WHY does this beautiful city need a wall? I think that the wall assures us that we will be safe and secure. All those who are there are separated and secured from all evil, violence, wickedness and enemies. The city itself is pure gold. I cannot even begin to imagine such splendor! The gold is SO pure that it is as clear as glass! Here on Earth, gold is a commodity that is greatly sought after, people kill for it! There, it will be a common place, building material like lumber is here, so common that we will walk on it!
Revelation 21:21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; every several gate was of one pearl: and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass. [KJV] . . . Notice again, that gold is the building material for the street! We will walk on a golden street!
Heaven has gates! ALL whom have believed God (1 John 5:10-12), and accepted His only begotten Son (John 3:16) to save them, have FREE admission! Those who reject Jesus (unbelievers, the devil’s children 1 John 3:10), will not even be able to see Heaven (John 3:3), let alone go there and live. The gates are made of another extremely valuable commodity here on Earth, that being pearls. Each gate is one pearl. I don’t know about you, but I simply cannot picture this! These are huge pearls! This is hard for some people to believe, but if God says it, it is TRUE, for God cannot lie (Tit.1:2). I do believe it, but I cannot picture this amazing place in my mind!
1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. [KJV] . . . Heaven is too beautiful and too wonderful to describe.
The spiritual meaning of Heaven is: the place of everlasting blessedness of all the righteous ones, the home of the departed spirits of God’s children.
#1. Jesus calls it His Father’s house (John 14:2)
#2. It is called Paradise (Luke 23:43; 2 Cor.12:4; Rev.2:7)
#3. It is called the heavenly Jerusalem (Gal.4:26; Heb.12:22; Rev.3:12)
#4. It is called the Kingdom of Heaven (Mat.25:1; Jam.2:5)
#5. It is called the eternal kingdom (2 Pet.1:11)
#6. It is called the eternal inheritance (1 Pet.1:4; Heb.9:15)
#7. It is called the better country (Heb.11:14,16)
#8. The blessed are said to sit down with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (Mat.8:11)
#9. The blessed are said to be in Abraham’s Bosom (16:22)
#10. The blessed will reign with Christ (2 Tim.2:12; Rev.5:10; 22:5)
#11. It is called rest (Heb.4:10-11)
#12. It is called everlasting life (John 3:15-16)
In Heaven the blessings of the righteous include the possession of life everlasting, an eternal weight of glory (2 Cor.4:17), exemption from all sufferings for ever, deliverance from all troubles (2 Cor.5:1-2), and from evils (2 Tim.4:18). Heaven is bliss without end, the fullness of joy for ever (Luke 20:36; 2 Cor.4:16, 18; 1 Pet.1:4; 5:10; 1 John 3:2). Heaven is not only a state of everlasting blessedness, but also a PLACE, a place prepared for God’s children, by Christ Jesus Himself (John 14:2-3).
In Heaven, God’s children shall tread the street of gold. We will be fully conscious, at rest, not in a state of sleep and/or idleness. We will have a close fellowship, not only with God and His Son, but with one another. This is just a faint representation on Heaven. THANK YOU JESUS!!!
Revelation 21:23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. [KJV]
Books You Should Read
Contradictions in the Bible??
Death, Then What?
God Cannot Lie
God Controls His Creation
Heaven vs Hell
??Is There Really a God??
Judgment in the Great Tribulation Period
??Paradoxes in the Bible??
Pride, Violence, Sexual Lust
Satan and Witchcraft
Second Coming of Christ and End Time Events
Sin and Forgiveness
Sovereignty of God
Walking With JESUS
Wicked Peaple Described
Wisdom From Psalms and Proverbs
For our other web sites:
Poetry . . . http://www.hisservantsministry.org . . . Poetry