In the previous post, we went through Romans 3:23-25 and discussed some of the words (grace and faith) used that are critical to the gospel and to explain their meaning. Here we will look at some others that are not very common in today’s vocabulary: sin, righteousness and justification. Continue reading “Sin, Righteousness, Justification”
There is a lot of talk about being tolerant in today’s society. What does that mean? When Jesus said, “Judge not” what odes that mean? And what is the context of it? As Christians, we are to love all people. Does that mean to accept what they are doing even if we know biblically it is wrong? How do we talk to that person without being judgemental? What does it mean when someone says, “love the sinner, hate the sin?” Why is this offensive to some people? Where do we draw the line between being self-righteous, judgemental, or “fruit inspectors” and being tolerant and compromising?
I had a person talk to me about churches and she was looking for a good church that isn’t “holier than thou” as she put it. We both agreed that God is a loving God and we are saved by grace. She talked about tolerance. I mentioned that some churches are too tolerant (and compromising) and do not want to teach about sin. We parted ways when she asked me my stance on gay marriage. She said churches should be tolerant and welcome all people. I agreed we are to welcome all people, including homosexuals. But, we are also to teach the truth and Romans 1 is very clear on this subject. She told me that I almost convinced her to come to my church until we talked about gay marriage.
So, how do we handle these touchy issues? Most people will quote Matthew 7:1 to basically tell Christians to mind their own business. I think many times they are right. We are also to share God’s word. I believe we must show God’s truth (we must teach and learn all of scripture, not just the part we are comfortable with), but our attitude must be in a loving manner but without compromising our faith and belief. Continue reading “Tolerance vs. Being Judgemental”
Previously we talked about God’s grace and the promise that through God’s grace we are saved by faith not by the things we do. It is what Christ did for us, taking our sins and paying for them by nailing them to the cross. So does that mean if we accept God’s grace and trust in Jesus that we could do whatever we want? I would say yes and no. Yes, we are free. But, we are free from sin and if you have truly accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and savior, you are changed. You are a new creation. Your old self has died and you now live for Him. Your desire should be aligned with God. You no longer want to do the sinful acts of your previous self. The Holy Spirit will live in you and will guide you. Now you can live by the Spirit and not by your flesh. If you do not see these changes, if your desires remain the same, you have to question the sincerity of your acceptance of God’s grace. You need to be reconciled to Him. It does not mean that you will never sin or your flesh will never creep in and tempt you. It will. There will be a battle. But remember that you are victorious because of the blood of Christ. Continue reading “Grace Abuse”
Three of the things God despises are worldliness, idolatry and materialism and I think these go hand in hand and are almost synonymous. God wants your complete and total commitment to Him. He does not want to share loyalties with anyone or anything else. He should be the one and only God in our life. We should serve Him and Him alone. Continue reading “The World, Idols, and Materialism”
The author of Hebrews writes to them reminding them that there is no longer a need for blood sacrifice for their sins each year. Jesus is our High Priest, to Jews and Gentiles alike, who offered Himself, who is perfect, who is sinless, who is without spot or blemish, as a sacrifice once for all. Those of us who believe, who follow Jesus Christ have been given a promise, that of eternal inheritance in the kingdom. Salvation through our Lord, Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. Thank God for the richness of His mercy, whose love endures forever.
But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.
For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is in force after men are dead, since it has no power at all while the testator lives. Therefore not even the first covenant was dedicated without blood. For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water, scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people, saying, “This is the blood of the covenant which God has commanded you.” Then likewise he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle and all the vessels of the ministry. And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.
Therefore it was necessary that the copies of the things in the heavens should be purified with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; not that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood of another — He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.