And on the day of salvation I helped you.”
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Friday, February 22, 2013
Unity # 27: Their Savior
Theme Song: As the Deer
We worship and exalt You, the Giver of the Scriptures. We come to You for eternal Life and in our pursuit of You, we read Your Word and struggle over ancient Doctrines. You are our Rock, Fortress, and Deliverer, in whom we take refuge. You are our Shield, the Horn of our salvation, our Savior who saved us from violence. We call upon You, who is worthy to be praised and we are saved from our enemies. (2 Sam 22:2-4) To You alone, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, both now and to the day of eternity (Jude 1:25). Help us to grow in the grace and knowledge of Yourself (2 Pet 3:18).
In Jesus Christ’s Name,
This letter is about Jesus Christ as our Savior. The Hebrew word for Savior, yasha’, means One who gives salvation, victory, and deliverance. The Greek word for Savior, sōtēr, means deliverer and preserver. I feel that this letter is a transition letter into a future focus on the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the people of God. I am now in the process of seeking God to reveal what His Word says about His outpouring of the Holy Spirit and asking Him to do precisely this in our lives. For by this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit (1 John 4:13). At the moment of conversion the Holy Spirit inhabits our being fully and He can never be taken from us. When the unconverted onlookers of Pentecost were pierced to the heart, they asked the apostles what they should do. Peter told them that they should repent and be baptized for the forgiveness of sins and they would receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:37-28) All people of all time, even prior to the Day of Pentecost, if they were regenerated had the Holy Spirit indwelling them. For as to our salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to us made careful searches and inquiries, seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves, but us, in these things which now have been announced to us through those who preached the Gospel to us by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things into which angels long to look. (1 Peter 1:10-12) Anyone whose faith is credited to them as righteousness has been born again of the Holy Spirit and the Water of the Word of God. Yet, in these last days it is now possible for the Spirit of God to be poured out on us, for us to be immersed in Him by Jesus Christ Himself. For Christ, the One who was raised from the dead and exalted to the right Hand of God, is the One who baptizes us in the Holy Spirit and in fire. (Matt 3:11) There is much doctrine surrounding this outpouring of the Spirit that we have neglected to uncover and I am praying for God to help us in the days ahead. Our desire is not to fall into extreme ungodly charismaticism nor to quench the Spirit, as we have done thus far to a significant degree. Our desire is to seek and to experience the riches of the knowledge of God in all Truth and sincerity just as He desires and proclaims in His Word, without erring in any way.
The apostle John tells us that they had seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world (1 John 4:14). Our Savior wondrously shows His lovingkindness to those who take refuge at His right Hand from the evil forces of the world that rise up against them. When we cry to the Lord because of our oppressors, He will send us a Savior and a Champion, and we will be delivered. He has sent us a Savior! We will know the Lord in that day. We will even worship with the sacrifice and offerings of thanksgiving, praise, and our bodies as living sacrifices. (Ps 17:18-21) Right now God, who formed us, tells us not to fear for He has redeemed us through the blood of His Son. He has called us by name, and He says, “you are Mine!” When we pass through the waters, He will be with us and though the rivers, they will not overflow us. When we walk through the fire, we will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn us. For He is the Lord our God, the Holy One of Israel, our Savior. We are precious in His sight, since we are honored and He loves us. He gave His own Son up for us that we may live only to bring Him back from the dead on the third day. He tells us not to fear, for He is with us. He will bring our Spiritual offspring from the east and gather us from the west. (Is 43:1-5). There is no other God but Him. We have been saved by the Lord with an everlasting salvation; we will not be put to shame or humiliated to all eternity. Truly He is a God who hides Himself, but He has not spoken to us in secret in a dark land or a waste place, but He, the Lord, speaks righteousness, declaring things that are upright. There is no God besides Him, a righteous God and a Savior, there is none except Him. He tells us to turn to Him and be saved, all the ends of the earth, for He is God, and there is no other. He has sworn by Himself, the Word has gone forth from His mouth in righteousness and will not turn back, that to Him every knee will bow, every tongue will swear allegiance. They will say “Only in the Lord are righteousness and strength”. All who were angry at Him will be put to shame. But in the Lord all the offspring of Israel, that is, all the children of God through faith in Christ, will be justified and will glory. (Is 45:4-25) He will feed our oppressors with their own flesh, and they will become drunk with their own blood as with sweet wine; and all flesh will know that He, the Lord, is our Savior and our Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob (Is 49:26).
We will love the true nation of Israel, and they will know that He, the Lord, is their Savior and Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob (Is 60:16). For He has become their Savior and ours. In all our affliction He was afflicted, and the Angel of His Presence saved us; in His love and mercy He redeemed us, and lifted us and carried them all the days of old. But for those who rebel and grieve the Holy Spirit continually because they have not been born again into the New Covenant, He turned Himself to become their enemy and fought against them. Then we, His people, remember the days of old, of Moses, when He brought His people out of the sea with the shepherds of His flock and put His Holy Spirit in the midst of them, who caused His glorious arm to go at the right hand of Moses, who divided the waters before them to make for Himself an everlasting Name, who led them through the depths. Like the horse in the wilderness, they did not stumble; as the cattle which go down into the valley, the Spirit of the Lord gave them rest. So He led His people, to make for Himself a glorious Name. (Is 63:8-14) He is the Hope of Israel, its Savior in time of distress (Jer 14:8). We are not to know any god except Him, for there is no Savior besides Him (Hos 13:4).
The angel of the Lord told the shepherds who were keeping watch over their flock by night that today in the city of David there has been born for them a Savior, who is Christ the Lord (Luke 2:11). After the woman at the well witnessed her encounter with the Messiah with her townspeople, they came are heard Jesus and proclaimed that it was no longer because of what she said that they believe, for they had heard for themselves and knew that this One is indeed the Savior of the world. (John 4:42). Jesus Christ is the One whom God exalted to His right Hand as a Prince and a Savior, to grant repentance to His people, and forgiveness of sins. Christ is the husband and the head of His bride, the church. He Himself is the Savior of His body. (Eph 5:23) Dear saints, our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ (Phil 3:20)
We must be good servants of Christ Jesus, constantly nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound doctrine which we have been following. We must have nothing to do with worldly fables fit only for old women. On the other hand, we must discipline ourselves for the purpose of Godliness; for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but Godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. It is a trustworthy statement deserving full acceptance. For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men in the sense that He gave them a chance to repent and believe. He is especially the Savior of all believers, because they have already believed and received the gift of eternal life. (1 Tim 4:6-10). For when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by grace we would be heirs according to the hope of eternal Life. (Titus 3:4-7) Now this been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel (2 Tim 1:10).
We must do everything for the faith of those chosen of God and the knowledge of the Truth which is according to Godliness, in the hope of eternal Life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago, but at the proper time manifested, even His Word, in the proclamation with which we are entrusted according to the commandment of God our Savior. (Titus 1:1-3) We must show all good faith so that we adorn the Doctrine of God our Savior in every respect (Tit 2:10). For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously, and Godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds. (Titus 2:11-14)
The faith we have all received is of the same kind. It is a gift given by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ. His grace and peace are multiplied to us in the knowledge of God and of our Jesus our Lord. We see that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and Godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. (2 Pet 1:1-3). But those who claim Christ as their Savior and Lord, and yet who are enslaved to corruption, are not truly saved. For by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved. For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment handed on to them. It has happened to them according to the true proverb, “A dog returns to its own vomit,” and, “A sow, after washing, returns to wallowing in the mire.” (2 Pet 2:19-22) If we feel that we are enslaved to corruption, we must ask and trust out Good Shepherd to gently guide and discipline us. For if we are children of God, we will not continue in slavery to sin.
And working together with Him, we also urge you not to receive the grace of God in vain— 2 for He says,
“At the acceptable time I listened to you,
And on the day of salvation I helped you.”
And on the day of salvation I helped you.”
Behold, now is “the acceptable time,” behold, now is “the day of salvation”—3 giving no cause for offense in anything, so that the ministry will not be discredited, 4 but in everything commending ourselves as servants of God, in much endurance, in afflictions, in hardships, in distresses, 5 in beatings, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in hunger, 6 in purity, in knowledge, in patience, in kindness, in the Holy Spirit, in genuine love, 7 in the Word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and the left, 8 by glory and dishonor, by evil report and good report; regarded as deceivers and yet true; 9 as unknown yet well-known, as dying yet behold, we live; as punished yet not put to death, 10 as sorrowful yet always rejoicing, as poor yet making many rich, as having nothing yet possessing all things. 2 Cor 6
Love in Christ,
Friday, February 15, 2013
Unity # 26: Living Water
Theme Song: Let Your Glory Fall
Your glory is coming and Your Voice is like the sound of many waters. Yes, the earth shines with Your glory. (Ez 43:2) There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy dwelling places of the Most High (Ps 46:4). Our bodies are Your tabernacles. You break open springs and torrents, bring forth streams from the Rock of Christ, and cause waters to run down like rivers (Ps 74:15, 78:16). You make us to lie down in green pastures and lead us besides quiet waters. Please give us Living Water to cleanse and revive us.
In Jesus Christ’s Name,
This week’s letter is about the Living Water of Christ. According to the New Covenant prophesied through Ezekiel, God would sprinkle clean water on us, and we would be clean. He would cleanse us from all our filthiness and from all our idols. (Ez 36:25) Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well that if she knew the gift of God, and who it is who asked her for a drink she would have asked Him and He would have given her Living Water. He said that everyone who drinks of physical water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that He will give him shall never thirst, but the water that He will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal Life. (John 4:10-14) In the same way on the last great day of a Jewish feast, Jesus stood and cried out saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scriptures said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of Living Water’”. By this, Jesus spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified. (John 7:37-39)
The power of the Living Water starts with the washing of the regeneration. When the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. (Tit 3:4-7) The washing of regeneration is our Spiritual baptism. For having been buried with Christ through baptism into death, so that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life (Rom 6:4). Having been buried with Him in baptism, we were also raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Christ from the dead (Col 2:12). Think of Noah and his family who were saved as they were brought safely through the water by staying in the boat, just as we remain in Christ. Corresponding to that, baptism now saves us—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who is at the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, after angels and authorities and powers had been subjected to Him. (1 Pet 3:20-22). Christ’s Feet are like burnished bronze, when it has been made to glow in a furnace, and His Voice is like the sound of many waters (Rev 1:15). In John’s revelation of heaven he said, “Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder saying ‘Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns’” (Rev 19:6)
The Living Water involves the Spirit and the Word of Christ. For when Jesus spoke of the Living Water that flows from within the true Christian, He spoke of the Holy Spirit (John 7:37-39). God prophesied through Isaiah that He would pour out water on the thirsty land and streams on the dry ground; He would pour out His Spirit and blessing on His people (Is 44:3). The Living Water also involves the Word of Christ. Jesus told His disciples that they were already clean because of the Word which He had spoken to them (John 15:3). For Christ loved the church, His bride, and gave Himself up for her so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the Word (Eph 5:25-26) Jesus is the Word (John 1:1)! So how do the Word and Spirit interact as the Living Water? Jesus told us that when the Spirit of Truth comes, He will guide us into all Truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to us what is to come. He will glorify Christ, for He will take of His and will disclose it to us. All things that the Father has belong to Christ; therefore He said that the Holy Spirit takes from what is His and discloses it to us. (John 16:13-14) The Holy Spirit takes the Word and cleanses, regenerates, and renews us; He discloses the Word of Christ in the Scriptures to us.
Dear saints, we must never forsake the Living Water and seek to be satisfied with what does not satisfy. God told Jeremiah that His people had committed two evils: They had forsaken Him, the fountain of Living Waters, to hew for themselves cisterns, broken cisterns that could hold no water (Jer 2:13). God tells everyone who thirsts to come to the waters; and those who have no money to come, buy, and eat freely. Why should we spend money for what is not bread and our wages for what does not satisfy? God tells us to listen carefully to Him, and eat what is good, and delight ourselves in abundance, and to incline our ear and come to Him, and to listen that we may live. For He has made an everlasting Covenant with us, according to the faithful mercies shown to David. (Is 55:1-3). For His justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream (Amos 5:24).
There is great satisfaction and contentment for those who drink of the Living Water. How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, not sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the Law of the Lord, and in His Law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers. (Ps 1:1-3) The Lord will continually guide him, and satisfy his desire in scorched places, and give strength to his bones; and he will be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water whose waters do not fail (Is 58:11). The lame will leap like a deer, and the tongue of the mute will shout for joy. For waters and streams will break forth in the wilderness. (Is 35:6) Those who bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in His house, test God in this, for He will open for them the windows of heaven and pour out for them a blessing until it overflows. (Mal 3:10). The blessing of our Living Water extends to others, for we must be eager to share the Word of Christ with all in hope that the Spirit will bring about regeneration and renewal. How blessed we will be, when we sow beside all waters (Is 32:20). The generous man will be prosperous, and he who waters himself will be watered (Prov 11:25).
The Living Water is an important part of our initial and ongoing repentance. With weeping we have come, and with supplication God leads us; He makes us walk by streams of water, on a straight path in which we will not stumble; For He is a father to His people. To have part with Christ, we must allow Him to clean our feet from the filth of our daily wanderings, that is, we must live a life of ongoing repentance and conformance to the Image of Christ. (John 13)
We share in the Spirit’s grief over the unrepentance of others (Eph 4:30). May our eyes shed streams of water, because many do not keep His Law and because of the destruction of God’s people until He brings restoration (Ps 119:136, Lam 3:48). Jeremiah said, “Oh that my head were waters and my eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!” (Jer 9:1)
Ezekiel describes the water which flows from the Temple of God. Water was flowing from under the threshold of the house toward the east. Water was flowing down from under, from the right side of the house, from south of the altar. Water was trickling down from the south side also. The water was deep enough to swim in, a river that could not be forded surrounded by a large number of trees. The water went towards the sea, being made to flow into the sea and the waters of the sea become fresh. Every living creature that swarms in every place where the river goes will live. Fishermen stand beside the river and it is a place for spreading nets for the many kinds of fish. By the river on its bank, on one side and the other, will grow all kind of trees for food. Their leaves will not wither and their fruit will not fail. They will bear every month because their water flows from the sanctuary, and their fruit will be for food and their leaves for healing. (Ez 47:1-12). At the time of the end, in that day, there will be no light; the luminaries will dwindle. For it will be a unique day which is known to the Lord, neither day nor night, but it will come about that at evening time there will be light. And in that day Living Waters will flow out from Jerusalem, half of them toward the eastern sea and the other half toward the western sea; it will be in summer as well as in winter. And the Lord will be King over all the earth; in that Day the Lord will be the only One, and His Name the only One. (Zech 14:6-9)
Love in Christ,
Saturday, February 2, 2013
Unity # 24: Enlightened to Judgment
Theme Song: I’ll Be With You Till the End of the World
You are our Judge. Lord, You are our Lawgiver and King. You will save us. (Is 33:22) You said that He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous, both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord. (Prov 17:17). Your Son, Jesus Christ delights in the fear of the You, Lord. He does not judge by what His eyes see, nor makes a decision by what His ears hear; but with righteousness He will judge the poor, and decide with fairness for the afflicted of the earth; He will strike the earth with the Rod of His Mouth, and with the breath of His lips He will slay the wicked. Also righteousness will be the belt about His loins, and faithfulness the belt around His waist. (Is 11:3-5) In the end, Your final judgment of the wicked will be terrible. You are righteous, who are and who were, O Holy One, because of these judgments on the wicked. For they poured out the blood of the saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink. They deserve it. Yes, O Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments. (Rev 16:4-7).
In Jesus Christ’s Name,
In last week’s letter, we discussed the Nature of our Lord. Christ’s Lordship involves both our willing reverence and obedience to Him as our worthy exalted Master as well as the loving power of the Lord to effect these heart conditions within His bondservants. To trust in Christ as Lord is to believe that He will keep us firm in faith, growing obedience, and growing repentance until the end when He finishes the work which He started in us. This letter is about God’s Judgment. As we read through the Old Testament prophecies of God’s judgment against the wicked and His rebellious people and the final judgments described by Jesus, the apostles, and in the book of Revelations, we must make certain that our hearts have been completely cleansed of any false notion that God is tyrannical or unduly extreme in His judgments. For He is perfect in His righteousness, justice, love and mercy. In His vast hatred against evil and those who practice wickedness unto damnation, we see the glorious nature of His righteousness. For Him to truly be the essence of all goodness, He must abhor and condemn all that stands in opposition to Himself. What a horrifying thing it would be if the God of the universe were unjust, if He refused to condemn the wicked! King David prayed, “O that You would slay the wicked, O God; depart from me, therefore, men of bloodshed. For they speak against You wickedly, and Your enemies take Your Name in vain. Do I not hate those who hate You, O Lord? And do I not loathe those who rise up against You? I hate them with the utmost hatred; they have become my enemies” (Ps 139:19-22). Here King David, does not harbor pride or malice, but the attitude of God towards the wicked, those who will never repent and trust in Christ and thus be damned, has been imparted to King David.
Before we go on, let us remember the great Lamb of God, slain before the foundation of the world, who drank the whole cup of the Father’s wrath for our sake. He was cursed, judged, and crushed by His Father that we may be blessed, granted eternal Life, and be new creations made like Christ in true righteousness and holiness. Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him (John 3:36).
Until the final judgment of God, the wheat, or the children of God, and the tares, or those who commit lawlessness and all stumbling blocks of idolatry, will grow together. But at the harvest time or the time of Judgment, the Son of Man will send forth His angels and the tares will be thrown into the furnace of fire where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. (Matt 13:30-43). Similarly, the Kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet cast into the sea which gathers up both good and bad fish. The good fish were gathered into containers and the bad fish were thrown away. So it will be at the end of the age; the angels will come forth and take out the wicked from among the righteous, and will throw them into the furnace of fire. (Matt 13:47-50) When the Son of Man comes in His glory, all the angels will be with Him, and He will sit on His glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the Shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; and He will put the sheep on His right and the goats on the left. The King will say to those on His right, “Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me. 37 Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? 38 And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39 When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.” Then Jesus will also say to those on His left, “Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; 43 I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’ 44 Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not [e]take care of You?’ 45 Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me. 46 These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matt 25:31-46)
In the last days, mockers will come with their mocking, following after their lusts. They will ask where the promise of His coming is. They think that ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation. In their thinking, it escapes their notice that by the Word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. But by His Word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the Day of Judgment and destruction of ungodly men. But we should not let this one fact escape our notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient towards us, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. The Day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up. Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought we to be in holy and Godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the Day of God, because of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat! But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, since we look for these things, we must be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation. (2 Pet 3:3-15)
When God described the judgments He would bring upon the Israelites to Ezekiel, He said that He would bring sword, famine, wild beasts, and plague to cut off man and beast from the land. He said that even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were in the midst of the land, by their own righteousness that came from faith, they could only deliver themselves. Yet, God would bring out some survivors with His great salvation whose conduct and actions would bring comfort to the people of God, for they would know that He had not done in vain what He did in His justice. (Ez 14) For when God’s judgments come on the earth, its people learn righteousness (Is 26:9) God knows how to rescue the righteous from His judgment. The judgment of the wicked from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep. For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others, when He brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; and if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction by reducing them to ashes, having made them an example to those who would live ungodly lives thereafter; and if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of unprincipled men (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds), then the Lord knows how to rescue the Godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment, and especially those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires and despise authority. (2 Pet 2:4-10)
Remember that the angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode through their lack of fear of God are kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great Day. They are wild waves of the sea, casting up their own shame like foam; wandering stars, for whom the black darkness has been reserved forever. Enoch prophesied about these men in the seventh generation from Adam that the Lord would come with many thousands of His holy ones, to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him. These are grumblers, finding fault, following after their own lusts; they speak arrogantly, flattering people for the sake of gaining an advantage. But we, beloved, ought to remember the Words that were spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, that they were saying to us that in the last time there will be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts. These are the ones who cause divisions, worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit. But we, beloved, building ourselves in the love of God, waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. And we must have mercy on some, who are doubting and save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some we must have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh. (Jude 6-23)
Jesus told us that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the Day of Judgment. For by our words we will be justified, and by our words we will be condemned. (Matt 12:36-37). So we must speak and act as those who are to be judged by the law of liberty. For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment. (James 2:12-13) We must make sure that none of us suffers as a murderer, thief, evildoer, or a troublesome meddler; but if anyone suffers as a Christian, we are not to be ashamed, but to glorify God in this Name. For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the Gospel of God? And if it is with difficulty that the righteous is saved, what will become of the Godless man and the sinner? Therefore, those also who suffer according to the will of God shall entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right. (1 Pet 4:15-19) For it will be given to the antichrist to make war with the saints and to overcome them, and authority over every tribe, people, tongue, and nation will be given to him. All who dwell on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain. If anyone has an ear, let him hear. If anyone is destined for captivity, to captivity he goes; if anyone kills with the sword, with the sword he must be killed. Here is the perseverance and faith of the saints. (Rev 13:7-10) God is faithful, and He will keep us firm until the end! Dear saints, if we have truly been regenerated, we will continue to bear good fruit, and we will not continue in rebellion against God characterized by the practice of wickedness. Our good works will be the evidence of our justification by grace through faith in the blood of the Lamb on the Day of Judgment!
The Father has given all judgment to the Son, so that all will honor the Son even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him. Truly, truly, He tells us that he who hears His Word, and believes in the Father who sent Him, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life. An hour is coming and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. For just as the Father has life in Himself, even so He gave to the Son also to have life in Himself; and He gave Him authority to execute judgment, because He is the Son of Man. We should not marvel at this; for an hour is coming, in which all who are in the tombs will hear His voice, and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment. Christ does nothing on His own initiative. As He hears, He judges, and His judgment is just, because He does not seek His own will, but the will of His Father who sent Him. (John 5:22-30) Jesus said that now judgment is upon the world and the ruler of this world will be cast out (John 12:31). This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil (John 3:19). The Spirit who has come convicts the world of guilt in regard to judgment because the prince of the world stands condemned (John 16:11). Christ is the Rider on the white horse called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His Head are many diadems; and He has a Name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. He is clothes with a robe dipped in blood, and His Name is called the Word of God. And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. These are the saints clothed in the righteousness of Christ. The saints will judge the world (1 Cor 6:2). From his Mouth comes a sharp Sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a Rod of iron; and He tread the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. And on His robe and on His Thigh He has a Name written, “KING OF KINGS, and LORD OF LORDS”. (Rev 19:11-16) There is a great white throne. When the Judge of all the earth sits on it, in His Presence earth and heaven will flee away, and no place will be found for them. The dead, great and small, will stand before the throne, and books will be opened; and another book will be opened, the book of life; and the dead will be judged from the things written in the books, according to their deeds. And the sea, death, and Hades will give up the dead in them and they will each be judged according to their deeds. Then death and Hades will be thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he will be thrown into the lake of fire. (Rev 20:11-16)
Dear saints, inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment, so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him. (Heb 9:27-28) Flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Behold, here is a mystery; we will not all sleep, but will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your Victory? O death, where is your sting?” 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 Cor 15:50-57)
20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming quickly.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. (Rev 22:20)
We praise God for the birth of Neethi (righteousness) Faith David to Anand and Prasanna.
6 lbs 14 oz 19.5 in long.
Love in Christ,