In What Condition is His Residence?

You might want to go back and read yesterday’s post for context. Think back on this Truth: God dwells in all who are His! Today, when a human being comes to Christ and receives Him as Savior and Lord, that person becomes part of God’s temple, as it exists now. Paul explained this to the Corinthian Church: “If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which (temple) ye are” (I Corinthians 3:17). That this temple is the church (all who have been born again)  is evident. Peter brings this out, in I Peter 2:5, describing it as a spiritual house and priesthood: “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.” Everyone who has been genuinely converted is a “living stone,” because Jesus has entered his or her inner being and made him or her alive with His life! We have a huge obligation and we are to have a loving and grateful willingness to let His glory shine untarnished in His sanctuary. In Psalm 63:1-2, the Psalmist expressed it this way: “O God, Thou (art) my God; early will I seek Thee: my soul thirsteth for Thee, my flesh longeth for Thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; to see Thy power and Thy glory, so (as) I have seen Thee in the sanctuary.” These stones (we who are redeemed) are designed and intended to show forth His praise and not to “smudge” His glory! So, in the words of Albert Orsborn’s hymn, “Let the Beauty of Jesus,” let each of us “stones” be quick to say: “Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me, all His wonderful passion and purity; O my Savior divine, all my being refine, till the beauty of Jesus be seen in me.” Selah! As others observe us, may they be able to echo John’s words in John 1:14. He wrote:And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father), full of grace and truth.”    Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

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Did You Know?

When reality strikes, it is thrilling! When we, who know Jesus as Lord and Savior, begin to grasp the magnitude of what was accomplished at the moment we were born again, it is beyond “marvelous!” The life, the resurrection life of Jesus; the very life and Presence of God enters our “inner being” (our hearts) and takes up permanent residence there! That is what raises us from spiritual death to life in Christ! In Colossians 1:27, Paul writes of: “….Christ in you, the hope (hope is anticipated certainty) of glory.” If you have been born again, His life will never leave you! Two Truths stand out in John’s first letter in Chapter 5:10-12. Let them grip you: “He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself.” and “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.” Then, he adds: “He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” As He dwells in you, you are enveloped in Him! Has this become real to you? He not only resides, but works to fill us with Himself, displacing all that is wrong. How does He do that? By bringing His life-giving Word (Living and written) to bear in our hearts. And, our hearts need to be responsive to His voice speaking to us from the pages of Scripture. William E. Booth-Clibborn has given us in his hymn, “Down from His Glory,” some lyrics that we would do well to take time to seriously consider: “Down from His glory, ever living story, my God and Savior came, and Jesus was His Name. Born in a manger, to His own a stranger, a Man of sorrows, tears and agony. What condescension, bringing us redemption; that in the dead of night, not one faint hope in sight, God, gracious, tender, laid aside His splendor, stooping to woo, to win, to save my soul. Without reluctance, flesh and blood His substance, He took the form of man, revealed the hidden plan, O glorious myst’ry, Sacrifice of Calv’ry, and now I know Thou art the great “I Am.” O how I love Him! How I adore Him! My breath, my sunshine, my all in all. The great Creator became my Savior, and all God’s fullness dwelleth in Him.” Selah! Have you surrendered to Him for salvation? The wonder of His indwelling Presence comes with that surrender. If you have received Him, do you realize what is happening in you? Begin to grasp the wonder!   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

Why?

God created the world; He created Adam and Eve, knowing what would happen. He knew what it would cost Him to rescue all who are open to being rescued. Why would He go through all this? Probably He had a number of reasons. However, there is one supreme reason. Mankind was given an opportunity to willingly turn to Jesus for salvation and to experience union with Him. Conversely, mankind was allowed to refuse and reject Him. While no one could will anything beyond God’s established boundaries, within those boundaries, they can make a choice that will settle their eternal destiny. God has planned an amazing destiny for all who truly want Jesus to be their Savior and Lord, and bow to Him in trusting love and gratitude. In order for this to be possible, Jesus had to endure horrors and suffering far beyond the worst ever experienced by any person on this earth, or ever will be experienced. Paul said something in Galatians 2:20 that is very significant but often not noticed: “….I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.” Jesus’ death is personal to each one who receives Him. In other words, if you were, or if I was, the only sinner needing a Savior, Jesus would have died for you or me! Amazing! C. Bishop gave grateful testimony, in his hymn, “Such Love,” that every truly saved person can identify with: “That God should love a sinner such as I, should yearn to change my sorrow into bliss, nor rest till He had planned to bring me nigh, how wonderful is love like this! That Christ should join so freely in the scheme, although it meant His death on Calvary — did ever human tongue find nobler theme than love divine that ransomed me? That for a willful outcast such as I, the Father planned, the Savior bled and died, redemption for a worthless slave to buy, who long had law and grace defied! Such love — such wondrous love! Such love such wondrous love! That God should love a sinner such as I, how wonderful is love like this!” Selah! What is the outcome of such love for all who come to Jesus? It is: “That in the ages to come He might shew the exceeding riches of His grace in (His) kindness toward us through Christ Jesus!” (Ephesians 2:7).   Ron

Questions? E-mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

Has Our Focus Been Shifted?

A magician “pulls off ” his tricks by drawing your attention away from what he is doing. It can be amusing and fascinating when it’s good entertainment. If our attention is diverted, when it comes to our really seeing Jesus, it can be deadly! If you do not know Him as Lord and Savior, correcting that situation is to be your number one focus! Do something about it while you can! For those who do know Him, has our focus shifted from Him to things about Him or related to Him? There are important, true, and essential things we need to know and understand. However, it is far more important not to lose our focus on Him, in the learning process. There are folks who study Christianity much more than really getting to know Jesus “up close and personal.” Imagine a man or woman who becomes an authority on marriage, wisely counsels others, writes helpful books on the subject, but are too busy to  make their own marriage beautiful. If you or I have fallen into that trap, in our interaction with Jesus, let’s refocus on Him. All that God shows us in His Word is intended to fix our eyes on Jesus. God wants us to receive Him, obey Him, be led by Him, become like Him, love, worship, adore, praise, thank, and share about Him. Paul, in II Corinthians 3:18, offers this inspired Truth as to what our time in God’s Word is to bring about in our lives: “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, (even) as by the Spirit of the Lord.” In the hymn, “Only Jesus” – By Palmer Hartsough, this brief excerpt is the kind of outcome that the Holy Spirit, using God’s Word, wants in our lives: “Only Jesus would I know, Jesus, only Jesus! He’s my portion here below, Jesus, only Jesus! Things of earth are trifling toys, He my highest thought employs; He the spring of all my joys, Jesus, only Jesus.” Selah! As you read about Him in the Bible, let your heart and mind see Him and fix your eyes on His glorious splendor!   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

“Taken” with

There used to be an expression that described something that really captured our interest. It was said that we were “taken with,” whatever it was. For example: a young man meets a pretty girl and he’s fascinated with her; he’s “taken” with her. That kind of attraction could be good or not good, depending on the object of our fascination. There is “One,” however, supremely worthy for us to be “taken” with and His name is Jesus! One author’s book, with Jesus in mind, was titled: “The Magnificent Obsession.” I think Paul was “taken,” body, mind and soul, with Jesus. In Philippians 1:21, he wrote: “For to me to live (is) Christ, and to die (is) gain.” and in Philippians 3:10, he wrote: “That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death...” He has loved us more than anyone else has ever loved us or ever could love us. He has done for us infinitely more than all others have done, far exceeding their greatest kindnesses and gracious help. Let me ask: “Are we “taken with Jesus?” Charles F. Weigle penned, “No One Ever Cared for Me Like Jesus.” If we know Jesus as our Lord and Savior, these thoughts will be our thoughts: “I would love to tell you what I think of Jesus since I found in Him a friend so strong and true; I would tell you how He changed my life completely, He did something that no other friend could do. All my life was full of sin when Jesus found me, all my life was full of misery and woe; Jesus placed His strong and loving arms around me and He led me in the way I ought to go. Ev’ry day He comes to me with new assurance, more and more I understand His words of love; but I’ll never know just why He came to save me, ’til someday I see His blessed face above. No one ever cared for me like Jesus, there’s no other friend so kind as He; no one else could take the sin and darkness from me, O how much He cared for me!” Selah! Nothing means as much as He does!   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com

Occupation or Ministry?

In case you might think this post is the same as yesterday’s, look closer. Yesterday, we discussed your being open to whatever God calls you to do with your life. If He has called you to full-time Christian work, will you embrace the “call?” I am addressing those who know Jesus as Savior and Lord. As we mentioned, there are those who settle for secular employment without its being God’s will for them. (Note: No Christian should work where questionable things are being done or promoted). However, if you truly belong to Jesus, your “secular” occupation is to be a means of ministry. (This assumes that God called you to this kind of occupation. If He hasn’t, you’ve no business being there)!  How can secular employment be a ministry? Do honest work; earn your “pay.” Live a Godly life and be an example of a child of God. Respect and value fellow-workers. Pray for those you work with and be helpful to them. Share your faith! Many employers do not allow you to share your faith. When someone questions you about your life, invite them to get together with you outside of work and working hours. This excerpt in Verse 11, of Romans 12 applies to Christian work and to a secular job ministry, whichever God has led you to undertake: “Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord.” May your desires be those expressed in these thoughtful lyrics: “My gracious Lord, I own Thy right to ev’ry service I can pay; and call it my supreme delight to hear Thy dictates and obey. What is my being but for Thee, its sure support, its noblest end, Thy ever-smiling face to see and serve the cause of such a friend? I would not breathe for worldly joy, or to increase my worldly good, nor future days or pow’rs employ to spread a sounding name abroad; but to my Saviour I would live, to Him who for my ransom died; nor could untainted Eden give such bliss as blossoms at His side. His work my later tears shall bless, when youthful vigour is no more, and my last hour of life confess His love hath animating pow’r.” (“My Gracious Lord, I Own Thy Right,”-By Philip Doddridge). Selah! In “secular” employment or formal Christian work, for a genuine disciple, God’s reason for him or her to be there is ministry! “walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.” (From Ephesians 4:1).     Ron

Questions? E-mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

Occupation or Calling?

There are Christians today who may be Absent With Out Leave. There was a time when missionaries and evangelists challenged people to surrender to full-time Christian service. You seldom hear that today! Has God stopped calling people to give their lives over to serving Him? I hope not! A better question might be: “Are you listening for God’s voice telling you how He wants you to serve Him?” I suspect that few today give it any serious consideration. We are so much a victim of our culture that we approach our life’s work, as would many unsaved people approach theirs: “What occupation shall I pursue?” “Shall I go into business?” “Should my career be education, the medical field, engineering, sports, entertainment, social work—add what you will?” What does God want? Would you do it, if He made it clear? Some will say: “God is calling me to pursue one of the fields mentioned above. Are you positive, or is it your desire, ambition and pride that is drawing you. If you are not where He wants you, you are A. W. O. L. In Colossians 3:17, Paul was inspired to pen: “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, (do) all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him.” Whatever else this verse commands, it certainly includes your life’s work. In this hymn, “It Pays to Serve Jesus,” – by Frank C. Huston we are reminded of what really counts: “The service of Jesus true pleasure affords, in Him there is joy without an alloy; ’tis Heaven to trust Him and rest on His words; it pays to serve Jesus each day. It pays to serve Jesus whate’er may betide, it pays to be true whate’er you may do; ’tis riches of mercy in Him to abide; it pays to serve Jesus each day. Though sometimes the shadows may hang o’er the way, and sorrows may come to beckon us home, our precious Redeemer each toil will repay; it pays to serve Jesus each day. It pays to serve Jesus, it pays every day, it pays every step of the way, though the pathway to glory may sometimes be drear, you’ll be happy each step of the way.” Selah! If God has called you to secular work, it is to be a ministry; If He calls you to full-time Christian service, that is your ministry.    Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com