Praise be unto the Lord God our Father who sent his only begotten Son Jesus to save us from our sins. Every blessing and glory to the Lord Jesus Christ who is victorious over sin, death and Satan. We ask that the Holy Spirit always keeps us mindful of the mercies and the triumph of God in Christ Jesus. Amen.
For the Lord your God is he who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies, to give you the victory.’ Deuteronomy 20:4
The Gospel and salvation are two sides of the same coin. No one who forever rejects the Gospel can receive salvation. Nor can anyone who is saved try to avoid the Gospel and then continue to be faithful to the Lord God.
One view of salvation mentioned in the Gospel is how sinners get an escape from the eternal consequences of their sins when they repent of their sins and believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In fact this is profoundly true. To elaborate more on this, it can be said that God’s mercy for mankind was so great that He sent his only begotten Son Jesus Christ to atone for their sins on the cross. Therefore, anyone who is repentant of his or her sins and believes in the atoning death and resurrection of Jesus on one’s own behalf has passed from death to life. So here the emphasis is on the sinners response towards Christ.
because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:9-13)
There’s another view of the Gospel and salvation. This is called the perspective of the victory of Christ. And this one is equally true. In this view Jesus Christ is glorified as the Lord who overcame sin and death. He even overcame temptations and the Devil himself even as a man. So here the focus is on the greatness of God in his mighty Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him. (Colossians 2:11-15)
As a believer in Christ you share in the victory of Christ.
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 15:56-57)
But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. (2 Corinthians 2:14)
For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith. Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God (1 John 5:4-5)
Jesus took on human nature so we can share in his victory.
Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. (Hebrews 2:14-15)
You didn’t get this victory of salvation by your own efforts.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:8-10)
We are warned against neglecting the salvation which comes from Christ.
Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will. (Hebrews 2:1-4)
We are called to live for Christ our victorious Lord and Savior.
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. (2 Titus 2:11-14)
If we combine the view of the victory of Christ and the view of the sinners need to accept Christ you have a far more complete view of salvation and the Gospel. It’s undeniable that the sinner must repent as the penalty for sin is eternal damnation and therefore he needs to receive salvation. Also, one must not discount the fact that no man could ever receive salvation without the hand of God actually offering salvation in the first place. Be joyful when anyone repents and believes in Gospel, be happy for that person for such a person has escaped the grasp of the Devil. Yet, even be more happy that the victory of Christ made salvation possible for that precious brother or sister in Christ.
Christ be with you!
- Dimensions of salvation to be revealed in the future (disciplesofhope.wordpress.com)
- Salvation: Easy as A-B-C and D (billrudgeministries.wordpress.com)
- Never Apologize For Sharing The Word (birdchirp.wordpress.com)
“Whosoever draws his sword against the prince must throw the scabbard away.” (English 17th Century Proverb)
A scabbard is a sheath for holding a sword, knife or other large blade or gun, such as a rifle with a bayonet.
There are two princes who are at war. First is Jesus Christ the prince of heaven and the son of God. The other is Satan the prince of the fallen world (John 12:31) and the arch-enemy of God.
There is no scope for being a neutral party. The Bible is very clear about this:
He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad (Matthew 12:30).
Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit. (1 Thessalonians 4:8).
“The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.” (Luke 10:16).
So when you choose the side of the prince of heaven, you’re at odds with the Devil. You must realize that Satan is on one evil mission. Some scriptures about this that tell about the problem by the Devil & the solution:
Violence like a lion:
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8)
Pretense by the Devil:
And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. (2 Corinthians 11:14)
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have [it] more abundantly. (John 10:10)
So know that the Devil is a violent, pretentious thief what must one do?
- Accept God; Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. (James 4:7)
- Resist the Devil; Resist him and be firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. (1 Peter 5:9).
What do I do if the Devil reminds me of my past failings?
Remind him about his future. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet [are], and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. (Revelation 20:10)
Just keep working on doing the right things as mentioned above. You don’t need to much wisdom. You only need God’s grace which is given to those who keep his word.
Thanks for reading. Christ be with you!
(Note: This is a message I had given to a private audience about 4 years ago and had made a record of this. Suddenly during my prayers I felt like God wants me to share this with you, so that you benefit from it.)
For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:7-8)
See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure. (1 John 3:1-3)
In your walk with God sometimes you may face temptations, sometimes you might be rejected by those who reject Christ our Lord and sometimes you might flying high above the opposition. What will sustain you and keep you from losing faith? It is none than your relationship with God. Christianity is ultimately is about being in a relationship with God in Christ Jesus. A relationship has emotions involved. God does express his emotions.
For those who believe in Christ the most prominent emotion by God is love. God loves you a lot. You cannot earn God’s love. There is no good deed that can cause him to love you more. All you need to do is to receive his love. Don’t block yourself out of the love of God by depending on worthless human tradition, self-abasement and worldly philosophies. Receive his love through his Son Jesus Christ. Christ’s love for us exceeds anything and everything. No one could possibly love you more. You sin is atoned for by Jesus Christ. Live no longer for the sinful world nor for any sin. Receive the freedom that Christ gives you through his redeeming sacrifice and shedding of his blood for you. Overcome because you believe in Jesus the overcomer of the world. Be holy therefore as the Lord your God is holy.
Trust in the Lord your God with your heart. Believe in his love for he is near to all who call on his name, in faith.
Christ be with you!
Stand not O lover of God in the darkness for God is light and in him is no darkness at all. Jesus is the light of world. He is Holy One of God who takes away of your sins. Do not fear the world that tempts you to sin but rather be courageous in Jesus Christ. He gives grace to the humble. Be humble enough to ask for his help when you are tempted in any form.
The world is beset by darkness, spiritual darkness to be precise. No wonder those who don’t have the light of Christ are covered by the darkness. We may live in a fallen world but are not called to share in its fallen nature. Awake O lover of God to his call to faith in Jesus the Son of God who gives you salvation.
Be not caught up in the darkness of sin and deceit. For the Evil One controls the destinies of people dwelling in sin. These people refused the light of God because of their love of darkness. Pray for such people instead of thinking of yourself as too great. Even you once were subject to the darkness due to your sin until Jesus Christ forgave you when you turned back to him. So be humble for your salvation is by God and not by your good works nor good looks.
Cling to Jesus Christ and love God. Live not for your selfish pursuits of sinful pleasure and riches. Rather live for the glory of God. Reject the falsehood of the world, the works of wickedness and those who hate Christ our Lord. Be in the light so that you give true glory to God.
I pray that the light of our Lord Jesus Christ shine on you and your loved ones always in this life and in the next life which also includes the new heaven and the new earth and most importantly new Jerusalem. All praise and glory to our Lord Jesus Christ the Son of God. Amen.
For it is you who light my lamp; the Lord my God lightens my darkness.( Psalm 18:28)
And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever. (Daniel 12:3)
For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the Lord will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you. And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.( Isaiah 60:2-3)
And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.” (John 3:19-28)
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”(John 8:12)
This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. ( 1 John 1:5-7)
And I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you, delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me. (Acts 26:15-18)
In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:4-6)
But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen. (Timothy 6:11-16)
That you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world (Philippians 2:15)
For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness.( 1 Thessalonians 5:5)
The sun shall be no more your light by day, nor for brightness shall the moon give you light; but the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory. (Isaiah 60:19)
And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there. They will bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations. But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life. (Revelation 21:23-27)
Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing (Psalm 100:2)
Do you serve the Lord with gladness? Do you feel that serving God is something that you need to do legalistically or freely?
Never get into a legalistic mode when serving God. Because your will power and disciple will get affected in the course of time. You are not a robot!
The Christian faith goes beyond religion because it concentrates not on rituals but on relation. Not any ordinary relation but a relationship with God through Jesus Christ his Son. So keep ritualistic attitudes outside and far away from your relationship with God.
It may be possible to show your gladness externally like smiling, singing when preaching the Gospel to unbelievers. But sometimes you can’t actually do this in instances of praying for a person who is suffering from cancer and is in pain. The point is that the expression of gladness must always be there in your inner being. You can be happy in your heart that Christ gives you salvation even in the midst of pain and suffering that you encounter either in yourself and others. Even Moses said in Exodus 15:2 that; The LORD is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.
Getting your mind right can dramatically affect your will power and discipline in doing the works of God. You will need to be very familiar with the word of God for this and put it to action.
Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance. For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe. (1 Timothy 4:7-10)
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-22)
A sure sign of faith that is disciplined is that you do not empower the flesh nature but rather you focus on the desires of the Spirit.
But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. (Galatians 5:16-17)
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. (Romans 8:5-6)
We must encourage each other to hold on the to word of Christ. Never force anyone but rather do it in freedom and respect. We do not condone sin but we exhort each other to be holy for God.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. (Colossians 3:16)
But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine. Older men are to be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness. Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. (Titus 2:1-12)
Accept the discipline of God because he loves you. God loves you as his child. No good parent will like to see his child eat stale food. If a child still tries to eat stale food then the good parent will surely try to correct the child. This is because the parent is aware of what is beneficial to the child and what is not.
My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights. (Proverbs 3:11-12)
Blessed is the man whom you discipline, O Lord, and whom you teach out of your law, to give him rest from days of trouble, until a pit is dug for the wicked. For the Lord will not forsake his people; he will not abandon his heritage (Psalm 94:12-14)
And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.” (Hebrews 12:5-6)
Never mistake the correction (or chastisement) of God as punishment. Because if you were to be punished he would have done so already. Correction is so that you improve while punishment comes due to lack of repentance.
Correction may come in form of preaching, teaching and examples in real life. Most of the while the Lord God will speak through your conscience about whether you are making a wrong move or walking on the right path. Sometimes godly people will approach you and try to get you on the right track. Never get confused between false accusers and those who truly are trying to help. Check the facts for yourself with the Bible as your guide. Because skepticism is not a substitute for discernment.
The difference between correction and punishment must be clear to you. Otherwise you might simply be bitter over nothing. Suppose you are speeding in your car and your dad is in your car too and he yells at you to slow down, he is not punishing you. He is only correcting you. However, if he makes you stop because you refused to slow down and then bans you for a month from driving then that is punishment.
You are to remain disciplined even as you commend others to godliness. If you train people to be holy but yourself commit robbery, you are in danger of hell fire.
But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified (1 Corinthians 9:27)
You who boast in the law, do you dishonor God by breaking the law? As it is written: “God’s name is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you.” (Romans 2: 23-24)
Have your will power and discipline for the Lord God not out of compulsion but out a free and thankful heart. This way you will truly give glory to God through Jesus Christ his Son. God be with you!
Being able to introspect your own thoughts is vital to your existence and well-being. Without knowing your feelings or logic, you might otherwise be working aimlessly. Going aimlessly in life is not a good thing as you may miss out on your way.
Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers (1 Timothy 4:16)
Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test! (2 Corinthians 13:5)
When doing good for others you need to question yourself within. It’s all between yourself. So be honest with yourself. You can do this as per your convenience but its best done daily. Avoid doing this legalistically but do it freely as that’s where the maximum benefit lies.
You might not actually need to ask yourself, all of them daily but it in the beginning please go through them all. Later you might realize you need only about five to ten. It’s all about doing right rather than making this a guilt it. No way are these questions to induce guilt but in fact these are to encourage you to be on the right track. So now let’s get acquainted with the questions when doing good for others:
- Does it benefit the souls of those I help?
- Does it contribute to the physical well-being of others?
- Do I feel pretentious when doing good?
- Do I communicate Christ in my actions?
- Is the love of Jesus there in me?
- Am I working out of love and respect or out of compulsion?
- Am I looking for praises of men or just want to do good because its good?
- Does fear of judgement form the basis of my motivation to do good?
- Do I balance my family life and my good works?
- Am I doing good works to make up for my sins or do I hold on to the fact that Jesus forgives freely those who repent and come to him?
- Am I trying to earn the grace of God by doing good works or am I aware that the grace of God can only be given by him but never earned by us?
- Am I walking in line with the teachings of the Gospel or going contrary to it?
- Is it all about me or is it about glorifying God?
- Where am I going long-term with my good works?
- Do my good works make me reduce my focus on praying?
- What is my motivation when I tell others about my good works?
- Do I feel like giving up in face of challenges? If yes, then why?
- Can I try a new good work that I never did earlier?
- Can I improvise on the good works that I’m already doing?
- Can I inspire others to do good works?
- Earning the grace of God
- The enabling grace of God
- Legalism as a counterfeit discipline
- Don’t take a guilt trip
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done. (Matthew 16:24-27)
We are called to carry our Cross. No one else can carry your cross. It is your personal responsibility. You must not be focused whether it is hard or easy to carry it. All you need to focus is that it is the right thing to do. Because in the Gospel Jesus Christ himself made it very clear that you need to carry it.
Jesus said, “Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:27)