10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: 11 Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.
In Colossians 3:10, 11 Paul revealed three truths about those who have put on the new man.
First, they have a divine nature. Each person who trusts Christ as Savior has "put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created him" (v.10) It is not just that a person wants a new nature-he has a new nature. We translate our position into daily living as we say yes to Christ and no to sin.
Secondly, those who have trusted Christ as Savior also have a new unity, "where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor un-circumcision, barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free" (v. 11). The new unity transcends all races, social positions, cultural differences-even economic and political status. Such distinctions belonged to the old man, not to the new man. And because God makes no distinction between the categories mentioned inverse 11, neither should we who know Jesus Christ as Savior.
Third, those who have trusted Jesus Christ have a new relationship: "Christ is all, and in all" (v.11). This is a new relationship where Christ is in absolute control. Is Christ in control of your life? Not just in control of something, but is He in control of all things? Is He truly "all and in all"? Is He, resident and President?
"and the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one" (John 17:22).
And Jesus answered and said to them, "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's" Mark 12:17
What did Jesus mean when He told us "to render to God the things that are God's"? The word "render" can be defined as to deliver or to give back". So, Jesus tells us that we are to render, or in other words, we are to deliver, or give back, to God those things that belong to Him. This involves an action, a choice, and a decision on our part. When I think about what Jesus said, I need to ask myself, what should I be rendering unto the Lord?
As I meditate more on this verse, I realize the process of giving to God what belongs to Him begins with my acknowledgement of the truth of His Word; acknowledging who He said He is, as truth, and acknowledging all that He has done for me. My response to this acknowledgment is to give God my heart in humble worship and gratefulness.
"Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness." Psalms 29:2 In response to God's immeasurable love shown to me on the cross, I surrender my heart to Him and give Him my obedience and my commitment to Him.
"My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways." Proverbs 23:26
"If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him" John 14:2 I want to render to God my mind to Him by acknowledging and worshipping Him, because that belongs to Him. I want to render to Him my heart by obeying His commandments and giving my commitment to Him, because, that also belongs to Him.
What is next? My body. Paul wrote in Romans 12:1: "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service."
As we look at this verse I believe it important to remember all that God has done for us. The mercies that God has manifested toward us. The fact that we have redemption from sin, deliverance from the power of the enemy and this beautiful new life that we are now enjoying in Him. Therefore, we need to present our bodies to God, as a living sacrifice. Paul in his letter to the Corinthians in I Corinthians 6:19 teaches that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. We are not our own. We have been bought with a price. Therefore, we are to glorify God in our bodies and in our spirits, which are His.
As expressed in the lyric of a old hymn, “Take my life and let it be, consecrated Lord, to Thee. Take my hands, let them move at the impulse of Thy love. Take my feet, let them be swift and beautiful for Thee.”
May the Lord take our minds, our hearts and our bodies, that we have given back to Him, and use them as He sees fit for His glory and honor. May the Lord will richly bless you as you grow in the knowledge, truth, grace and mercy of His Word.
And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold (Matt. 24:12).
The world that we live in is abounding in iniquity. There are some who are hoping and praying for a worldwide revival and I am one of those. However, I do not believe that the church is going to go out in a blaze of glory, and I do believe that at the time of the coming of Christ iniquity will be abounding on the earth just as it was in the times of Noah. We are now living in a time of weakness in our judicial system where it is no longer bring judgment against evil. Look at the recent ruling of our Supreme Court made concerning marriages and the decision that the Boy Scots just made. We find no longer are they bringing judgment against evil. Evil must be judged. When man fails in the judgment of evil then God steps in and He judges the evil. That’s the way it was in the time of Noah. There was no real judgment of evil. "Everyone was doing what was right in his own eyes," and thus God intervened and God judged. This will be the case again. We are getting ready for the judgment of God. Man is not judging evil so God will step in and God will judge evil and that’s what the great tribulation period is all about. It is God’s judgment against evil. As they cry to the mountains and rocks fall on us and hide us from the face of the land for the day of His wrath has come and who shall be able to stand? During days leading up to the what the Bible describes as the great tribulation iniquity will abound and as the result, the love of many will wax cold.”
The question must be is it truly possible to have fellowship with God in a world that seems to be turn upside down? We are living in days where man appears to be doing “that which is seems right in their own eyes.” Where is right is being called wrong and wrong is called right. We are now living in a period of time where crime has reached it’s all time high. Where morality seems to have hit it’s all time low. The family life has almost become a thing of the past. Being married and staying married seems to becoming a novelty. As a result of this we can see chaos running wild across our streets in our country. We are seeing teen age kids run away at a staggering rate. Homeless people living in our cities streets with seemly nowhere to go. The fear of gangs with their violence and their shooting of each other in our streets has become a reality. Drugs and the live style that goes along with it seems to be continuing at a uncontrollable rate. We are experiencing a great downward spiral in the quality of life for man that has been escalating at such a rate that only can end up in a server crash unless something changes. We now finding across the board a acceptance of evil. The move in our nation is to be tolerant. The question that we need to ask ourselves isn't there still some moral absolutes? I believe the Bible tells us what is right is right and what is wrong is wrong. When we do not let the Bible define what is right or wrong that leads us to a sick society that cannot purge the poisons from its system.
Sin has never been more readily available and because of that, the love of many has waxed cold. There are some who have gone back to the life of the flesh. What is wrong with this picture? What is wrong in our churches? Jesus said that the love of "many shall will wax cold." He said in the contents of the passage that during the times of the "Last Days" that the lack of love would be within the churches. What is at the core of this lack of love? I believe that it stems from a following away from what the Bible teaches. Jesus said, "If ye love me, keep my commandments." The dangers starts when we start to choose what part of the Bible we want to believe in. Once we start to gain on understanding about the Bible from our own mindset rather than taken God's Word at face value we start to twist the scriptures to meet our own personal slants or views. Once we do this the slippery slopes begins and our love for God begins to grow cold. How many times in the Old Testaments do we have God say over and over again. "And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God." "But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee:" God has a simple spiritual law, It is the law of sowing and heaping. Paul wrote about this in the book of Galatians "For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting." If you choose not to take God's Word in its entirety and believe it and act on it then you have compromised and are sowing to the flesh.
As we look at the world that we live in it truly looks hopeless. But the fact is that in the mist of this hopelessness their remains to us a door of hope. That door the bible declares to be is Jesus Christ. He is truly the only ones that can give us hope in this world. If you find yourself drifting form God remember what Jesus said to His church. "Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent. How can it be possible for man to walk God? The answer is to return to your first love.
Mark 13:1-2 "And as He went out of the temple, one of His disciples saith unto Him, Master, see what manner of stones and what buildings are here! And Jesus answering said unto him, Seest thou these great buildings? there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down."
An interesting and surprising response from Jesus to His disciples' declarations of admiration regarding the temple. And, yet, it happened just as Jesus said it would.
God's Word is true and sure and we can count on it. It's been tried and tested and scrutinized like no other literary work.
During the time of Jesus, the temple was one of the wonders of the ancient world. It took over fifty years to construct.
Josephus, an historian during this time, records some of the stones being forty-seven feet long, eight feet high and twelve feet thick. The prophecy of Jesus seemed unbelievable and impossible, until archaeological excavations unearthed tremendous cornerstones approximately thirty-five feet long, about six feet high and eight feet thick. It is estimated that these stones weigh up to four hundred tons. While in Israel, I stood beside these stones and was amazed at how each stone was so perfectly hewn and carved so perfectly smooth that they required no mortar and laid flat one stone upon another where a knife could not be inserted between two stones. It is still not know how these stones were moved into place. The temple was then adorned with gold.
So, as the disciples were coming out of the temple, they noticed these huge stones and the marvelous building that was constructed by Herod, and pointed it out to the Lord. Jesus' response to the disciples must have surprised them. However, some forty years later, when Titus came in and conquered Jerusalem, the temple came under attack. Titus ordered the temple not to be destroyed, but to leave it intact. However, some of the drunken Roman soldiers began to shoot flaming arrows toward the temple and it caught on fire. The gold in the temple began to melt under the intense heat of the fire and the melting gold dripped down filling the cracks in and between the stones. In order to gather the melting gold, the Roman troops dismantled the temple, stone by stone, until not one stone was left standing upon another stone, fulfilling the prophesy of Jesus.
Today in the Teropian Valley in Jerusalem you can look down into the excavations and see where they have dug all the way down to the Roman road which was there at the time of Christ. And on that Roman road, you can see huge stones lying broken from being pushed over from the Temple Mount. And as you see these stones lying on that road you are witnessing the fulfillment of what Jesus predicted when He said, "Not one stone was left standing upon another."
God's Word is sure and I believe that we need to pay close attention to what God's Word, the Bible, says and how it applies to our lives. It is my prayer that you read the Bible everyday and that you might grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
The Bible teaches that Jesus is returning. Are you ready?
"And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh." Luke 21:28
We are living in very momentous days. Each day brings an unfolding of new events that are very interesting in the light of Bible prophecy. People are asking questions concerning Bible prophecy. I think it is amazing as to lack of knowledge of end-times events. What is the overall prophetic view of what God has for the future? Will these things that God has spoken about actually transpiring before our very eyes? As we look at the world events and the things that are transpiring in the world in which we live in it is painting a clear picture of what the Bible tells what would be happening in the "Last Days."
In the next few articles we will be looking at the Bible to understand the events of the "Last Days" and what will take place in what I believe to be in our near future. From the scriptures we will get a understanding of the last days and of the events that will take place in the future concerning Jesus Christ and His coming again and establishing God’s kingdom on the earth.
The Lord has declared that He did not want us to be ignorant but that He wanted us to be understanding of the times in which we live. That is why He wrote in advance of things that would take place so that that day would not take us by surprise. God wants us to know as Paul said, “knowing the time, it is high time to awake out of our sleep, now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.” It is high time that the church wake up as we are almost at the end, we are almost home.
First we need to lay a foundation of prophecy. The foundation is not as interesting as the framing but if we don’t have a good foundation then the building isn’t going to last. It is important to know how the whole thing is put together. Bible prophecy is like a composite drawing in that we have a little part of the picture here and another part over there but when you put them all together you will have a good idea of what the whole picture looks like.
The Bible tells us that Jesus is coming again. When Jesus ascended into heaven after His resurrection He spent some forty days with His disciples. Meeting with them in different places and in different circumstances. The last picture we have of Jesus before He ascended we find Him standing with his disciples and those who gather with them on the Mount of Olives. Jesus said to them “you go back and wait in Jerusalem until you receive the promise of the Father that I’ve been talking to you about "for John baptized with water but you’re going to be baptized with the Spirit not many days from now.” The book of Acts goes on and tells us that after Jesus after Had given them this promise that He ascended into heaven out of their sight and a cloud received Him out of their sight. They were left standing there gazing into heaven...
Acts 1:8-11 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.
The promise that the angel spoke to them was that Jesus is coming again.
During the last days before His crucifixion Jesus was telling his disciples about the crucifixion and resurrection and the fact that He was going away. Hearing this news was disturbing to them because they just didn’t understand what He was telling them. The disciples concept of the Messiah was that He was going to rule and reign forever that He would deliver in a glorious new kingdom. They thought that Jesus was the Messiah. How is it that He was talking about death and going away back to the Father have anything to do about the glorious new kingdom? They were disturbed about these things. Jesus knew what they were thinking said to them, "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also." John 14:1-3 So He gave his disciples the promise that He is going to come again.
The second coming of Jesus is absolutely essential for the fulfillment of Bible prophecy concerning the Messiah. ... continued next week