We are nothing like God

“But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. (Luke 6, 35-36, NASB.)

Do you love your enemies?  God does.  He loves His enemies because He is kind.

“For He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men.” (Verse 35)

Is all of your behavior good?  God’s is.  He always does good.  Our attempts at doing good, on the other hand, are called “dead works” (Hebrews 6 and 9.)

How much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (Hebrews 9:14, NASB)

Are you a merciful person?  Are you full of mercy and compassion and forgiveness toward others?  Well, hallelujah!  God is!  He is the only One who is merciful.  That is good news because we really need His mercy!

The first verses listed above, from Luke 6, are part of the famous “Beatitudes,” a.k.a., The Sermon on the Mount.  In that sermon Jesus was speaking to the Pharisees, trying to get them to see that they needed Him as their Messiah, their Saviour.  But the fact is that they had already rejected Him and at that point in the story, they were already planning to destroy Him, to do away with Him.  Why?  Because, according to them, He “worked” on the Sabbath Day.

Yes.  How dare Him, right?  He actually walked through a grain field and allowed His disciples to pick wheat and eat it.  In addition, He healed a man who had a withered hand . . .  on the Sabbath day!!!  Shocking, huh?

The Pharisees were like, “You evil unrighteous person!  You picked wheat!  You healed a man!”  . . . uh?  Okay.

It’s ridiculous to us, of course.  But to them, it was audacious and wrong and against the rules!!!

And yet, all of us, at one time or another were just like the Pharisees.  Blind, rule-following, religious, prideful jerks who rejected Jesus and saw no need for His love, His goodness, His mercy.

But . . . I can take a deep breath, take a sigh of relief and rejoice in His mercy to me.

“He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men.” (Luke 6:35)

I can be thankful today and every day, no matter what my circumstances are, because He has saved me by faith through grace.

I just want to praise Him today and remember that I am NOTHNG like Him.  Neither are you, if you’re honest, and that is good news!  Because He is God, and we are not.

 

 

Hearing the gospel message with faith

sunset sunshine travel wings
Photo by Julian Jagtenberg on Pexels.com

 

I want to share the wealth that has been given to me.

After I believed in the gospel by the hearing of faith, I was made a child of God. God has made Himself known to me; He wants us to know Him; do you know Him?

You begin by believing in the gospel. Do you know the gospel?

The gospel is the good news, or the glad tidings, of Jesus Christ. It’s good news because He came to solve the problem that plagued humanity.

God came to earth as the Messiah to the Israelites; he was called Jesus Christ of Nazareth.  He died, was buried and He rose again. That is the gospel in a nutshell, but to really understand the good news, you must first grasp a hold of the ‘bad news.’

We are born into this world with a serious problem staring us in the face. We are empty.  We are blind. We are lost. We are dead.

We are born into this world “spiritually dead.” You can read about this in Genesis 3, Genesis 5, John 3, John 14, Romans 5, 1 Cor. 15, Colossians, etc. etc.. The Bible is clear:  humans are born in the image of Adam, not in the image of God.

But that’s not the way we were originally created. We were created to have His Spirit dwelling within us. The “breath of life,” the nishmat chaim, from Genesis 3, was the actual, living, Spirit of God.

Adam and Eve lost His Spirit when they ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. As we have all read:  on that day, they died.

Jesus came to deal with the spiritual death of humanity. He preached and proclaimed that the problem would soon be solved; that there was good news coming, and that the good news would do away with the bad news.

He said that it was better for Him to go away, to ascend into Heaven, because then the Helper would come:  His Spirit. We make a big deal about His birth, and that’s cool, but we should make a bigger deal about His death and resurrection. Why?

Because His death, His burial, and most importantly, His resurrection made it possible for humanity to be saved; to be made alive; to receive His resurrected life, His Spirit, that would resurrect US from the dead.

Hearing this message with faith, is what allows a person to be saved.