Archive for December 2013

So Great Salvation [2]   Leave a comment

So Great Salvation

So Great Salvation

So what makes us think we can escape if we ignore this great salvation that was first announced by the Lord Jesus himself and then delivered to us by those who heard him speak?” Hebrews 2:3

As mentioned in the post So Great Salvation [1], we will have to give an account of what we did with this Salvation God provided.

Paris Reidhead mentioned 5 stages of this salvation. These stages depict what happens before salvation and when we are saved.

The first point mentioned was:

  • Awakening

Ephesians 5:14 says :

But their evil intentions will be exposed when the light shines on them,for the light makes everything visible. This is why it is said, “Awake, O sleeper, rise up from the dead, and Christ will give you light.”

This is like God’s voice calling to the dead to raise from their darkness. Jesus’ light penetrates the dead spirit of man to revive it. This quickening happens through various means. It could be through scripture reading, sermons ,songs, dreams, nature, miracles or prayers. For instance in Hebrews 4:12 we read this about God’s Word:

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.”

Paul says in Romans 1:19-21 that nature itself gives witness to God:

They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks.”

There’re ongoing reproofs surrounding sinners. The name of Jesus makes demons tremble and I believe that when this powerful divine being is presented to sinners, it brings fear.

Why is it then that amidst all these obvious signs pointing to Christ that the Jews refuse the Messiah and pagans blaspheme against His holy name? Why are there still unrepentant hearts, sinners,  rebels and servants of the devil? What is a hardened heart? It is when a sinner reads the bible verses quoted in this post and still refuse to repent.

Paul gives this reason:

If the Good News we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hidden only from people who are perishing. Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.” 2 Cor 4:3-4

People don’t understand the Gospel, ignore Jesus and even speak against Him because they are under the power of Satan. Satan has blinded the minds of those who are perishing. They will NOT know who God is unless the Light shines in their darkness. It is therefore the responsibility of those who has the light within them, to shine it. We need to tell to people about their need to be saved before telling how to be saved.

We read in Matthew 4:15 :

… in Galilee where so many Gentiles live,the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light. And for those who lived in the land where death casts its shadow, a light has shined.”

Paul asked this question: “But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?” Romans 10:14

We are living in a world more corrupted than it was 2000 years ago. People’s heart are so hardened to the gospel that they celebrate Christmas with a whisky in hand! They go to church on the 25th december and celebrate Jesus’ birth as a feast. If they only knew that these celebrations were blasphemy against the Son of God! Knowing that Jesus came to save sinners should bring sinners to their knees and not feast. A few weeks ago I asked a friend :

Why do you celebrate Christmas? He said because Jesus came. I asked him why did He come? He replied because of our sins. Notice well, he did not say “because of sins” but because of his sins also. Is not it a tragedy that people know the truth and blatantly spit at it? The world know that we are stepping into 2014 because 2014 years ago Jesus came. These people already know the truth but they ignore it.

They do not want to be awakened. Why is it then that some believe and others do not want to believe in Jesus? John 3:18 says:

But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed.But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants

The reason some hate the light and refuse to draw near to it is because of their pride. They fear that their sins are exposed publicly. They still love their sinful way of living. Promiscuity, adultery, debauchery, drunkenness, crime, avarice and evil pleasures that satisfy their flesh keep them away from this holy God. Those who want to be awakened draw closer to the Light. It is like admitting we are sick, see the surgeon to remove the cancerous cells. I have met people who feared to see a doctor because they were shy to talk about their illness. For years they remained like that and their health deteriorated. Removing dysfunctioning parts of one’s body is fearful for a while. But the more we wait, the more we suffer. Without surgical intervention to remove these dead cells, the whole body will continue to perish. It required divine intervention to heal our dead soul. The tragedy is that not everyone wants to be healed.

Jesus preached exactly what was required to bring the Jews to repentance. He did miracles no one ever did. Still, He saw that His Words could not penetrate hardened hearts. People saw His miracles but it had no effect. They heard His Words but did not listen. He even said that if Sodom, Tyre and Sidon heard and saw all these miracles they would have repented. But woe to Bethsaida and Korazin who thought themselves wise and rejected Him (Mat 11:21,22, Mat 12:41)!

For they look, but they don’t really see.They hear, but they don’t really listen or understand” Mat 13:13

When you hear what I say,you will not understand. When you see what I do,you will not comprehend.For the hearts of these people are hardened, and their ears cannot hear, and they have closed their eyes—so their eyes cannot see, and their ears cannot hear,and their hearts cannot understand, and they cannot turn to me and let me heal them.”

God’s Words sowed are awakenings but if the heart is not receptive to these awakenings, the devil come and steal them (Mat 13:19).

Posted December 30, 2013 by Cedric in Theology

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So Great Salvation [1]   2 comments

So Great Salvation

So Great Salvation

So what makes us think we can escape if we ignore this great salvation that was first announced by the Lord Jesus himself and then delivered to us by those who heard him speak?” Hebrews 2:3

These past few weeks I listened to the series of sermons by Paris Reidhead on this theme “So Great Salvation”.  What that basically means is that we have sufficient knowledge about who Jesus is and failing to show allegiance to Him is rebellion. Ignoring and neglecting what He did make us self-condemned.

Whether we like it or not, we will all have to give an account to God of what we did and did not do.

Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable.” Hebrews 4:13

Remember, we will all stand before the judgment seat of God. For the Scriptures say,“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bend to me,and every tongue will confess and give praise to God.’”Yes, each of us will give a personal account to God.” Romans 14:10-12

We also have to give an account of things we said. If we blasphemed against Jesus, these word will be brought as evidenced against us. If we confessed Jesus as our God, these words will acquit us (Romans 10:9).

And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak. The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.” Mat 12:36

Notice well here that we will personally have to give an account. Our parents, Mary, angels, the pope, priests, pastors, spouse or friends won’t be able to speak for us or defend us.   Jesus will look at us in the eyes to either tell us “Good and faithful servant” or “Soul of iniquity”.  We will have to acknowledge on this day our sinfulness and it will be too late.  The Father will ask ” I have sent you Jesus to save your soul ,what have you done about it?”.  I have sent people to talk to you about me at school, at work, on facebook, in the media and you ignored such a great salvation? How dared you? You have heard but did not listen.

There will be only one Advocate before the judgement seat of God. This Advocate is Christ Himself (1 John 2:1) and He will defend those who relied on Him for the salvation of their soul. On the other hand, the devil will use God’s law to accuse those who rejected Christ (John 5:45).

It has come at last—salvation and power and the Kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers and sisters has been thrown down to earth—the one who accuses them before our God day and night.” Rev 12:10

As Paul said, God’s law is holy (Rom 7:12-13) but its purpose was to make people realize that through their own efforts they would not be able to please God. No one can ever be made right with God by doing what the law commands, follow rituals and religion.

Actually Jesus said this about the law of Moses:

Yet it isn’t I who will accuse you before the Father. Moses will accuse you! Yes, Moses, in whom you put your hopes.If you really believed Moses, you would believe me, because he wrote about me.” John 5:45

God’s law made all men sinners and guilty (Rom 3:19). If you ever lied, you’re a sinner since you violated God’s law. Since we are all sinners, there is no escape to such a great salvation. We will all have to face God’s wrath or mercy.  Jesus is the one God appointed to be the dispensator of this long planned salvation.