Archive for February 2012

Urgent message to Christians(youths).   Leave a comment

Young-christians

Young-christians

In the bible we have examples of young people like Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego who did not compromise with their faith. They did not hesitate to offend the king by refusing to worship his gods. We also have Daniel who was faultless in his job and thrown in the lion’s den because he refused to worship the king. There’re also leaders such as Esther, Esdras, Nehemiah who brought a change in their generation. We have Timothy, Titus, Stephen, David, Samuel, Joshua etc who were leaders God used to impact their generation. Since there’re many things which can be said about them, I’ll skip the details and assume that you know the stories of all these young people. So I come straight to the point: “What about you?”.

I often ask young Christians, “How is it going with Christ”. I hear over and over the same answer – “Oh you know I’m not so much engaged for the time being”. If I ask a just married man this question: “How is the married life” and he replies “Oh you know I’m not so much engaged for the time being”. That would be a terrific answer. Is not it?

Some of you reading this might have many reasons for your mediocrity, passivity and lukewarmness regarding your engagement with Christ. Oh by the way, you might think that I’m trying point the finger. What I’m sharing are things I have been through. Work and studies really consume our time. But do you still find yourself close to God amidst all these occupations? Is He the central being in your life and thoughts?
Perhaps you will blame your parents for failing to give you a good example. It’s like reasoning like Adam and say “It’s because of this woman”.

You might blame your pastor for teaching false doctrines, for being hungry for money, hypocrite or whatever. Look these people have their responsibilities and will have to give an account to God for what they did.

Let’s not try to throw the blame. What about you? Do you know Jesus?

When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?“Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah or one of the other prophets.”Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Mat 16:13-15

Your parents can tell you Jesus is this or that. You have also the version from your pastor. But what about you? What if Jesus asked you “Who do you say that I am”?

You’ll tell Him, “Well Jesus, you’re the God of my parents” or “The pastor said you are this man who died on the cross for my sins and if I believe in you I’ll be saved from my sins. You know, the pastor told me to say a little prayer and I did it. He told me that I’m now saved and a Christian“.

You’ll say that to Jesus? I know I’m saved because the Spirit testifies to my heart that I’ m saved (Romans 8:16). I understand in whom I have believed and I have this deep conviction of my salvation through Christ.

We know that we have come to know God if we obey his commands.Suppose someone says, “I know him.” But suppose that person does not do what God commands. Then that person is a liar and is not telling the truth. But if anyone obeys God’s word, then God’s love is truly made complete in that person. Here is how we know we belong to him. Those who claim to belong to him must live just as Jesus did. ” 1 John 2:3

Are you ready to face opposition and ready to die for your faith? There’s a lot of probability that the Jesus you know is just a Jesus from your imagination. You know a fictitious Christ. You’ve probably not yet meet with the Jesus of the bible. If you know the Jesus of the bible, you should be different. He should be your master in everything you do. You can believe that Jesus died for your sins without living like someone who knows what it means to be a follower of Jesus. That’s why in the church we see people sitting for 20+ years on the bench and still baby Christians. Look at their life, they should be mature Christians and able to teach others but are still with milk(Heb 5:12). It’s a tragedy. Ask them what Jesus did for them. They might hesitate to give you a genuine testimony. Or if they really have a testimony, it’s dated 15 years ago. What has Jesus done for them yesterday, last month, last year? Nothing? There must be a problem. Now, the problem is with whom? Jesus, huh?

Jesus is the Good Shepherd and not a hired hand. If some sheep don’t follow Him, they are not His sheep. The sheep know the voice of the Shepherd. You can try blaming your pastor for being a bad leader but not so with Christ. Jesus is a perfect leader and you’ll never be able to blame Him for not leading you to the green pastures. I’m sorry, but you are either a sheep or a goat.

Look, Jesus NEVER promised prosperity, good health or a rosy life. He said in this world we’ll have trouble(but he overcame it). We are pilgrims down here. What Jesus promised us is a new life(2 Cor 5:17). I don’t know about you, but that’s the greatest thing for me. I’m no longer a slave to sin. In His will He’ll surely help us in our troubles. He said that He’ll always be with us till the end of days. Listen, if you hope that Jesus will give you whatever you want for your temporary life, you’re living in an illusion.

And if our hope in Christ is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world.

Jesus went to prepare a place for us, it’s heaven the greatest thing. He cares for the sparrows and know what you need. If you ask something according to His will, He’ll give you. But don’t think that God is your servant. Don’t ever think that you’re rendering a service to God when you give money to the church. God don’t need your money, He wants your obedience to Him! To obey is better than sacrifice. Everything belong to God anyway.

Don’t ever think that you’re indispensable in the ministry. Don’t boast that you’ve this gift or that talent.

Read the whole of Matthew 7.

Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.

Don’t fool yourself. Don’t think that if you can cast out demons, speak in tongues, prophesy, teach, heal the sick etc that it means you’re right with God. No, it’s a deception. God can still let you use these gifts but reject you. You can be like Balaam. You can still be reigning like Saul but rejected by God. It is God who appoints and give gifts, so don’t boast. Out of stones God can create living creatures.

The road is narrow and difficult. Not everyone’s life is built on Christ the Solid Rock. Many think that their heart is a good soil but in reality it’s a heart of stone. If you’re not with Christ you’re against Him.

Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me.” Mat 12:30

If you claim to belong to Christ, there’re many things you should do and not do.
In John 15 we read that Jesus is the Vine and we are the branches. If you’re in Christ, you can no longer bear thorns. A good tree cannot bear bad fruits. A branch that bears no fruits is cut off and thrown into the fire says John 15. Harsh you may say.  If someone is in Christ, he can no longer be the same. There’s something called transformation or conversion. The person is dead to his former way of life and born again to live anew.

Christianity is not a joke. We have a great privilege but even greater responsibility. Who does not like to be called a prince or princess? This is not a joke, this is what we really are. We are God’s children and priests. We are God’s ambassadors. Oh great you would say!

But do you know the responsibilities of priests, princes, princess’, ambassadors and God’s children?

Look, if you really want to follow Jesus, you must be willing to take your yoke. You’ll have responsibilities and God will expect you to be productive. It’s not legalistic, it’s a joy to serve God. God will surely accompany and equip you. The rich young man could not accept leaving what he cherished most to follow Jesus. There’re many young people like that. You want to have a career, complete your studies and have a loving family. Jesus is not against that. But He might ask you to leave one of these things for something else.

You might say that you know the bible well. Listen, knowledge without practice is nothing. Beware! The more you know, the more severely judged you’ll be. What good is it to know that stealing is wrong but still steal. Even robbers are aware of that. Sinners know what is good and bad but still chose to do what is bad.

You have to resemble Christ and bear fruits. Break up any carnal relationships. If you’re not married and going out with this girl/boy and doing bad things in secret, break it up now. It cannot be God’s will for both of you to be together. Even if the person is a Christian, put a halt. Reconsider whether it is God’s will. You’re perhaps still immature and just looking for someone to love or to love you. There’s nothing worst to marry the wrong person. Can you see a prince courting a harlot, completely drunk and playing in a casino. Impossible, that would be a disgrace for the royal family.

You’re a soldier and your standard of living is holiness. You form part of an elite. You’re the salt and the light for this world.

A soldier does not take part in things that don’t have anything to do with the army. He wants to please his commanding officer. In the same way, anyone who takes part in a sport doesn’t receive the winner’s crown unless he plays by the rules. The farmer who works hard should be the first to receive a share of the crops.Think about what I’m saying. The Lord will help you understand what all of it means.” 2 Tim 2:4-7

Don’t lose your time with futile things of this world. Invest yourself for the Kingdom. Love people. Daniel prayed thrice a day, he was disciplined. If you wanna be a powerful servant of God, you gotta take a stand.

Stop reading the bible, study it! Take 3 months if need be to understand a book. You have a lifetime to read just 66 books anyway.

Dear children, I’m writing to you because your sins have been forgiven. They have been forgiven because of what Jesus has done. Fathers, I’m writing to you because you have known the One who is from the beginning. Young people, I’m writing to you because you have won the battle over the evil one. Dear children, I’m writing to you because you have known the Father. Fathers, I’m writing to you because you have known the One who is from the beginning. Young people, I’m writing to you because you are strong. God’s word lives in you. You have won the battle over the evil one.” 1 John 2:12-14

There’re so much things to say, I recall what Paul said to Timothy: “The Lord will help you understand what all of it means“.

Posted February 25, 2012 by Cedric in Thought-provoking

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Epistle to the Hebrews (2:14-18)   Leave a comment

Epistle to the Hebrews

Epistle to the Hebrews

Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying. We also know that the Son did not come to help angels; he came to help the descendants of Abraham. Therefore, it was necessary for him to be made in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. Then he could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people. Since he himself has gone through suffering and testing, he is able to help us when we are being tested.

Since Adam’s fall, the human race became hostile to God. It is natural for a growing child to sin. Parents don’t have to teach their children to lie, the children will sin because they are sinners. A new born baby is born a sinner even before he is able to speak and act. So it’s not when he’ll first sin that he’ll become a sinner. He’s bound to sin because of his inherited sinful nature.

But you must not eat the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. If you do, you can be sure that you will die.” Gen 2:17

We can see this death both spiritually and physically. Man is no longer God’s friend, he’s hostile to God. This spiritual relationship between God and man has been broken.

Jesus came to reestablish this spiritual relationship between God and man. It was this spiritual death that caused physical death. He came to fixed this problem. He restored it so that we can live eternally with Him. He’ll give us a new body, one which will not corrupt and immortal. Paul compares our mortal body as a seed which will die to give a new body. This new body is spiritual and will last forever. This seed is what the body we inherited from the first Adam, the new Adam(Jesus) will give us a glorious body.

Death came because of what a man did. Rising from the dead also comes because of what a man did. Because of Adam, all people die. So because of Christ, all will be made alive…

It will be like that with bodies that are raised from the dead. The body that is planted does not last forever. The body that is raised from the dead lasts forever. It is planted without honor. But it is raised in glory. It is planted in weakness. But it is raised in power.It is planted as an earthly body. But it is raised as a spiritual body.

Just as there is an earthly body, there is also a spiritual body. It is written, “The first man Adam became a living person.”— The last Adam became a spirit that gives life. What is spiritual did not come first. What is earthly came first. What is spiritual came after that. The first man came from the dust of the earth. The second man came from heaven. Those who belong to the earth are like the one who came from the earth. And those who are spiritual are like the one who came from heaven. We are like the earthly man. And we will be like the man from heaven…

Our natural bodies don’t last forever. They must be dressed with what does last forever. What dies must be dressed with what does not die. In fact, that is going to happen. What does not last will be dressed with what lasts forever. What dies will be dressed with what does not die. Then what is written will come true. It says, “Death has been swallowed up. It has lost the battle.
1 Cor 15, Rom 5:12-21

Christians no longer fear of dying because they know that death is just the end of a temporary life and a start of something new. What power does the devil has now? Jesus gave Christians spiritual life and this implies eternally living. The devil has power only over those who are spiritually dead because they will have no hope of eternal life after their death. Their body won’t be changed, it will be eternal death.

The fallen angels and the demons did not have this grace of having Jesus doing something for them. God was not obliged to forgive them, it was a condemnation without appeal. But what about man?

Was God obliged to forgive man? No, He would still have been just and right if he destroyed the human race when Adam sinned.

This verse we just read implies that we cannot tell to God “You don’t know what it means to be tempted”. Jesus was tempted in every way and He knows what it means to be in a body. This is why He is a perfect High Priest. He can sympathise and help us. Notice that being tested or being tempted will cause us to suffer if we want to do God’s will. It’s a battle in our flesh with Jesus there to help us.

Posted February 20, 2012 by Cedric in Theology

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Epistle to the Hebrews (2:10-13)   Leave a comment

Epistle to the Hebrews

Epistle to the Hebrews

God, for whom and through whom everything was made, chose to bring many children into glory. And it was only right that he should make Jesus, through his suffering, a perfect leader, fit to bring them into their salvation.So now Jesus and the ones he makes holy have the same Father. That is why Jesus is not ashamed to call them his brothers and sisters. For he said to God,“I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters.I will praise you among your assembled people.”He also said, “I will put my trust in him,” that is, “I and the children God has given me.” Hebrews 2:10-13

We saw earlier that the author quoted this verse :”What is a human being that you think about him? What is the son of man that you take care of him?

He calls us brothers and friends of the Almighty. Through Jesus we are made holy and are made children of God through the power of his death and resurrection. We are now ingrafted branches(John 15) and live through Him(For more details see: Here).

He is a perfect leader. We can blame leaders down here for failing to lead a company or team. Leaders are not perfect, they have flaws. But not so with Christ, we’ll never be able to blame Him for not being a good leader. He is the Good Shepherd and He does everything for His sheep. If we do not bear fruits (John 15) we cannot blame Him for that.

We are not perfect but we are literally called to become perfect and be like Christ. Though we are imperfect, often offend Him, are ashamed of His Gospel(Rom 1:16), sin and disobey Him, He is still faithful. His Majesty in heaven is not ashamed to call us brothers and sisters before all the great angels in heaven. But what about us? Are we ashamed of Him before our friends? Does your friends know that you’re a Christian?

Jesus does not shepherd goats but sheep. That’s why He said:

So every tree that does not produce good fruit is chopped down and thrown into the fire. Yes, just as you can identify a tree by its fruit, so you can identify people by their actions. “Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.” Mat 7:23

Through our actions we can deny that we are a follower of Christ.

But God’s truth stands firm like a foundation stone with this inscription: “The LORD knows those who are his,” and “All who belong to the LORD must turn away from evil.” 2 Tim 2:19

No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister. ” 1 John 3:9

They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.” Titus 1:16

Those who are in Christ cannot continue to live in sin. They are running towards perfection. They are crucified with Christ and it’s Christ who lives in them.

This is a trustworthy saying:If we die with him,we will also live with him.If we endure hardship, we will reign with him.If we deny him,he will deny us.If we are unfaithful,he remains faithful,for he cannot deny who he is.” 2 Tim 2:11-13

If we deny Jesus, He’ll deny us. Peter denied Him 3 times but could be restored because Jesus was not yet crucified. After His death it is different.

I tell you the truth, everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, the Son of Man will also acknowledge in the presence of God’s angels. But anyone who denies me here on earth will be denied before God’s angels.” Luke 12:8

Jesus is not ashamed to call us brothers and sisters. I’ll be so proud to say that I’m the father of an adopted daughter who honors me. I’ll not hesitate to call her “my dear beloved daughter”. But I’ll never be proud to say that I have an adopted daughter who is a harlot and who disowns my family name. I’ll be ashamed to call her “my beloved daughter” and because of her persistence I will expel her from my house!

We can deny Christ by the sinful life we live, by worshiping another God or by being ashamed to say that He is our God.

I know a Prince who looks for beggars, prisoners, harlots, drunkards, criminals and sinners where they are(Luke 14). He did everything to give them a new life. He gave them new clothes, delivered them from their vices and paid all their debts. He paid whatever it cost to get them out of jail.

The world knows how bad all these people are, these people are despised by the society but this Prince was with them. He ate with them and went to their ghettos. The governors of this Prince and His generals(e.g. angels) wonder how He can do such things. Will not His Righteous Father be ashamed? Is not the King’s Son disowning His Father’s name and reputation?

He does even more than that: He brings all these criminals in His castle, He makes them sit together with His Father for dinner. He calls them friends, brothers and sisters. He is not ashamed. He even gives them ministries, leadership responsibilities, titles and crowns. Only Him can be in the presence of His Father, but He requested that all of them can be in the presence of His Father(John 17). His Father loves them the same way the Son loves them. He no longer calls them sinners but sons and daughters.

Now what will happen if this cherished son or daughter starts to rebel, to live in adultery and insult the King? The Prince will warn him/her and try to convince this person to stop. If this person continues sinning, will he still be called son and daughter? A friend of the King? No this ungrateful person will be kicked out. Through his deeds, this person will break a sincere relationship and will never be admitted again. He will be called “Enemy of the Kingdom”. A disgrace.

That’s why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God.But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to him at all.) And Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you life because you have been made right with God. The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.
Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.
” Romans 8:8-17

Adoption

Adoption

Posted February 12, 2012 by Cedric in Theology

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Ingrafted branches   Leave a comment

We know that we have come to know God if we obey his commands. Suppose someone says, “I know him.” But suppose that person does not do what God commands. Then that person is a liar and is not telling the truth. But if anyone obeys God’s word, then God’s love is truly made complete in that person. Here is how we know we belong to him. Those who claim to belong to him must live just as Jesus did. ” 1 John 2:3-4,

Just as Jesus did. I have read the book titled “Like Christ” by Andrew Murray and I was so struck by the reality in these words above. For years I have been wrestling to try to resemble Christ but it was so difficult. I made a lot of efforts and finally concluded that it was impossible. I said to myself that Jesus gave us an example of perfection that we need to try to aim. I thought that Jesus was not literally meaning that we should become exactly like Him. It could not be literal, it must be an ideal. I’m just a man, I live in a world of sin, how can Jesus expect that of me?

Lies! Jesus really expects us to become like Him in all aspects. This is impossible if we try this by ourselves, I can testify that!
If it was my decision to choose to become like Jesus, it would have been a gross sin. No here, it is God the Son who wants His friends, his brothers and sisters to become like Him. It was His prayer (John 17).

These verses talk about these aspects of our life that need to be conform to Christ’s likeness.

John 13:15(Serve), John 15:12(Love), Mat 18:33/Col 3:13(Forgiveness), 1 Thes 4 (Holiness).

Paul was an imitator of Christ (1 Cor 11). We have been predestined to become like Christ Rom 8:29, 2 Cor 3:18.
Jesus literally wants us to be perfect (Mat 5:48). He is he author and perfecter of our faith, He’ll finish what He has started in us. “Streams of living water will flow from inside him” into those who believe in Him (John 7:38).

It’s all about Him and the Spirit working within us to transform us into Christ’s likeness. It is not about us changing ourselves into Christ image. John 15 portrays it well. We are the branches and He is the Vine.

I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.

John 15 is in my opinion the greatest illustration Jesus gave to His disciples of what He is to them and what they are to Him.

If it is not physically possible for us to be what a branch is to the Vine, spiritually it is what Christians are. This chapter explains how a Christian now survives. The Word and the Spirit remove in us all impurities, they prune us from everything that hinders us to bear fruits. When I look at a mango tree, I see the branches holding the fruits. A branch cannot do anything to produce these fruits. The branch just carries to the fruit what the roots extract from the soil. A branch cannot survive without the tree but a tree can survive without a branch.

The Greek word used here to describe the branch is klēma which means a branch ingrafted. We were on another tree before, we were from Adam(Romans 5:15-21). The fruits we were bearing naturally was sin and death. Jesus is God, He is holy and sinless. What He did is this: He removed us from the sinful life we inherited Adam and ingrafted us in Him. It was not natural for us to bear good fruits. Our contact to holiness is Jesus.There’s now nothing common between our old nature and what we are now since we are now nourishing ourselves from a holy sap. We died to our old nature because spiritually we are no longer in Adam.

Anyone who believes in Christ is a new creation. The old is gone! The new has come! It is all from God. He brought us back to himself through Christ’s death on the cross. And he has given us the task of bringing others back to him through Christ. ” 2 Cor 5:17

An orange branch ingrafted in a lemon tree will produce a mixed fruit. Each of these different species will influence each other. But not so with Christ. We cannot influence Christ with sinful behavior. Jesus removes these branches that do not bear good fruits. Jesus the Vine wants us to bear grapes not thorns. We are now in Him and Him in us. We should be influenced by what He gives, we are to resemble Him.

Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. ” Rom 6:3-6

Our old self is crucified. It is finish. I can say to my old self “I am finish with you, I do not want to have anything to do with you”.

We are in Christ! Glory to God! What a grace!

Just contemplate the Lord’s prayer:

They do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to it. Use the truth to make them holy. Your word is truth. You sent me into the world. In the same way, I have sent them into the world. I make myself holy for them so that they too can be made holy in a true sense.
“I do not pray only for them. I pray also for those who will believe in me because of their message. Father, I pray that all of them will be one, just as you are in me and I am in you. I want them also to be in us. Then the world will believe that you have sent me.”I have given them the glory you gave me. I did this so they would be one, just as we are one. I will be in them, just as you are in me. I want them to be brought together perfectly as one. This will let the world know that you sent me. It will also show the world that you have loved those you gave me, just as you have loved me.”Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am. I want them to see my glory, the glory you have given me. You gave it to me because you loved me before the world was created.”Father, you are holy. The world does not know you, but I know you. Those you have given me know you have sent me. I have shown you to them. And I will continue to show you to them. Then the love you have for me will be in them. I myself will be in them.

I in them, they in Me. This was the Lord’s prayer. The ingrafted branches in Me.

Paul saw how his fellow Jews were cut off and Gentiles like us ingrafted. This is what he said:

The first handful of dough that is offered is holy. This makes all of the dough holy. If the root is holy, so are the branches. Some of the natural branches have been broken off. You are a wild olive branch. But you have been joined to the tree with the other branches. Now you enjoy the life-giving sap of the olive tree root. So don’t think you are better than the other branches. Remember, you don’t give life to the root. The root gives life to you. You will say, “Some branches were broken off so that I could be joined to the tree.” That’s true. But they were broken off because they didn’t believe. You stand only because you do believe. So don’t be proud. Be afraid. God didn’t spare the natural branches. He won’t spare you either. Think about how kind God is! Also think about how firm he is! He was hard on those who stopped following him. But he is kind to you. So you must continue to live in his kindness. If you don’t, you also will be cut off. ” Romans 11:16-22

The word of God purifies us.

You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.“ John 15

Use the truth to make them holy. Your word is truth.” John 17

The fruit of the Spirit should naturally be produced in us. We are not the one who do the pruning, it’s the Gardener. We are the clay, not the Potter. What is our role then? Our role is this “Remain in Christ”. Give Christ this honor of transforming you in His image. If we try to be our own hairdresser, it will be a mess. From Christ overflows holiness into us. Can we become like Christ, my answer is yes because He works in us to transform us in His image.

Our faces are not covered with a veil. We all display the Lord’s glory. We are being changed to become more like him so that we have more and more glory. And the glory comes from the Lord, who is the Holy Spirit.” 2 Cor 3:18, Gen :26

For quite a long time, I thought that what the bible was expecting from Christians was too demanding, impossible. By my own effort I tried to become like Christ. I always failed. Now I understood that He Himself will do everything. I just have to remain in Him. I just have to let myself molded into His image by Him.

In him we live and move and exist.” Acts 17:28.

Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned.” John 15:6
Many Christians do not like to hear about it but it’s what the bible teaches over and over again. A branch that does not bear fruits is removed, cut off and thrown into the fire. A good tree(Jesus) cannot bear bad fruits. How can the Holy Vine bear thorns? Is not it a disgrace? How can a branch which bears bad fruits “glorifies the Father in heaven”. Those who claim to be Christians and do not bear good fruits will be removed.

God did and does everything for us to resemble Him. But not everyone wants to leave his dark desires.

He gives us everything we need for life and for holy living. He gives it through His great power. As we come to know Him better, we learn that He called us to share His own shining-greatness and perfect life. Through His shining-greatness and perfect life, He has given us promises. These promises are of great worth and no amount of money can buy them. Through these promises you can have God’s own life in you now that you have gotten away from the sinful things of the world which came from wrong desires of the flesh. ” 2 Peter 1:

Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” 1 John 3:2

Let’s not lower the high standard of priesthood living that Christ called us. God’s children cannot resemble the children of the father of lies. We are princes and princess’ of the Holy King. Our Kingdom is heaven.

Posted February 1, 2012 by Cedric in Theology

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