Tag Archives: son jesus christ

John MacArthur – Knowing God

 

“With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18).

Your desire to know God should motivate you toward fervent prayer.

Man’s highest purpose is to know God. Jesus prayed to the Father, saying, “This is eternal life, that they may know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent” (John 17:3). Of us He said, “I am the good shepherd; and I know My own, and My own know Me” (John 10:14). John added that “we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding, in order that we might know Him who is true, and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 5:20).

Every Christian knows God through salvation, but beyond that lies an intimate knowledge of God. That should be the quest of every believer. Moses prayed, “Let me know Thy ways, that I may know Thee, so that I may find favor in Thy sight” (Ex. 33:13). David entreated his son Solomon to “know the God of [his] father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind” (1 Chron. 28:9). Even the apostle Paul, who perhaps knew Christ more intimately than any human being thus far, never lost his passion for an even deeper knowledge (Phil. 3:10).

Such passion is the driving force behind powerful prayer. Those who know God best pray most often and most fervently. Their love for Him compels them to know and serve Him better.

How about you? Is your knowledge of God intimate? Does the character of your prayers reveal that you’re in the process of knowing God?

Paul’s admonitions to “pray at all times in the Spirit” and “be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18) presuppose that you know God and desire to see His will fulfilled in His people. If not, you’ll never appreciate the importance of interceding on behalf of others.

Suggestions for Prayer

The martyred missionary Jim Elliot once prayed, “Lord, make my life a testimony to the value of knowing you.” Let that be your prayer each day.

For Further Study

Read 1 Chronicles 28.

  • What did God forbid David to do?
  • What would happen to Solomon if he failed to know and serve God?

Greg Laurie – God’s Gift to Us (Part 2)

 

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.—Isaiah 9:6

We celebrate Christmas in order to rejoice over God’s most precious gift to us. The birth of Jesus Christ is a gift from God that came in simple wrapping, as well as a gift we don’t deserve. But the gift of Christ also explains His purpose for humankind.

The gift of Christ was no afterthought. Long before there was a stable in Bethlehem, before Adam and Eve ever set eyes on each other, and even before there existed a garden called Eden, God decided to send His Son Jesus Christ to die on the cross for our sins.

From the beginning, God knew humankind would fall short of His glory. That is why the Scriptures proclaim that Jesus Christ was slain from the foundation of the world (see Revelation 13:8).

God made a decision from the very beginning that Christ would come to this earth to live and die and rise again from the dead. God’s gift to us proves His purpose to redeem us.

The gift of Jesus Christ is what Christmas is all about. Jesus came near to us so we could come near to Him.

Christmas is not about tinsel or shopping or gifts under a tree. Christmas is about the gift God gave on the tree where Christ died for our sins, giving us the gift of eternal life.

That is what He has accomplished. This is the gift He extends. And if you receive it, you will experience the merriest Christmas of all.

Greg Laurie – God’s Gift to Us (Part 1)

 

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. —John 3:17

When you’re a child, Christmas is all about receiving gifts. In December, your head is swimming with nothing but images of your favorite toys.

But the true message of Christmas is not the presents we give to one another. The true meaning is the gift that God gave to us, His Son Jesus Christ.

During the next two days, I want to point out to you three things about the gift God gave to us in that tiny manger in Bethlehem.

The first thing we want to realize about God’s gift to us is that it came in simple wrapping. Some people will go to great lengths to wrap presents beautifully. But God’s gift came to us not in beautiful, ornate wrapping, but in a dirty manger found in a cold cave in a little-known town called Bethlehem.

That’s the beauty of the Christmas event. Jesus took His place in a manger so that we might have a home in heaven. The Savior was not wrapped in satin sheets, but in common rags. There in a manger rested the greatest gift in the plainest of wrapping.

The second thing I want to point out about God’s gift to us is that we don’t deserve it. Consider this: God gave us the ultimate gift of His Son Jesus Christ while we were still sinning against Him (see Romans 5:8).

We did nothing whatsoever to merit or deserve His gift. That is the amazing truth of Christmas. Despite who we are, God sent His Son so “that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

With Christmas just days away, begin to prepare your heart for the celebration of the birth of our Savior. Meditate on the fact that Jesus was born to die so that we might live.

John MacArthur –Christ’s Superior Nature

 

“Of the angels He says, ‘Who makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire.’ But of the Son He says, ‘Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever'” (Heb. 1:7-8).

Jesus Christ is God, and He created the angels.

People today who claim that Jesus was just a man, an angel, a prophet, or some inferior god are in error and bring upon themselves the curse of God. The Bible, and especially the writer of Hebrews, are clear about who Christ is.

First, the writer deals with the nature of angels when he says, “Who makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire.” “Makes” simply means “to create.” The antecedent of “who” is Christ. Therefore it is obvious that Christ created the angels.

They are also His possession: “His angels.” They are His created servants, who do not operate on their own initiative, but on the direction of Christ.

But the greatest difference between the nature of angels and Christ is that He is the eternal God. The Father says to the Son, “Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever.” That is one of the most powerful, clear, emphatic, and irrefutable proofs of the deity of Christ in Scripture.

Jesus throughout His ministry claimed equality with God. He said, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30). The apostle John closed his first epistle by saying, “We know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding, in order that we might know Him who is true, and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life” (1 John 5:20).

God the Son came to help us understand that God is truth and that Christ Himself is the true God. Our faith is based on the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Suggestion for Prayer; Ask God to give you a greater understanding of the reality that Jesus is in fact God.

For Further Study; Read John 1:1-18 and mark the verses that define Christ’s relationship to God. If an unbeliever were to ask you what that passage means, how would you answer him or her?

Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – He Does the Work

dr_bright

“And I am sure the God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in His grace until His task within you is finally finished on that day when Jesus Christ returns” (Philippians 1:6).

Howard was adamant in his conviction. “I would never lead anyone to Christ that I could not personally follow up to be sure he matures and grows and becomes all that God wants him to be.”

“Since when did you assume the responsibility of the Holy Spirit?” I asked.

Obviously, we are to do everything we can to help a new believer grow to maturity in Christ – by teaching him to trust God, study His word, pray, live a holy life, and share his faith with others. But no matter how much we do, it is the Holy Spirit who helps the new believer come to Christ, and who illumines his heart with the Word. The Holy Spirit teaches us how to pray and empowers us to witness. In fact, there would be no supernatural life apart from the Holy Spirit.

Paradoxically, you and I can be confident, yet humble, when we think of all that we are, and all that we have in Christ, and realize that we are not responsible for any of it, but it is something which God has given us according to His grace. My only boast is in God, His Son Jesus Christ and His indwelling Holy Spirit. How can I boast of my abilities and achievements, when it is the Giver alone who is worthy of all honor and praise? The apostle Paul had the strong conviction that the work God had begun in the believer would be permanent. All events that transpire in our lives, all influences, heartaches, testings and sorrows, as well as all of the blessings, are designed to conform us to the image of Christ.

Bible Reading: 1 Corinthians 1:4-9

TODAY’S ACTION POINT: God, who saved me, continues to work in my life, conforming me to the image of Christ. Therefore, I will continue to trust and obey Him, as I draw upon His supernatural resources

John MacArthur – Knowing God

John MacArthur

“With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18).

Your desire to know God should motivate you toward fervent prayer.

Man’s highest purpose is to know God. Jesus prayed to the Father, saying, “This is eternal life, that they may know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent” (John 17:3). Of us He said, “I am the good shepherd; and I know My own, and My own know Me” (John 10:14). John added that “we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding, in order that we might know Him who is true, and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 5:20).

Every Christian knows God through salvation, but beyond that lies an intimate knowledge of God. That should be the quest of every believer. Moses prayed, “Let me know Thy ways, that I may know Thee, so that I may find favor in Thy sight” (Ex. 33:13). David entreated his son Solomon to “know the God of [his] father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind” (1 Chron. 28:9). Even the apostle Paul, who perhaps knew Christ more intimately than any human being thus far, never lost his passion for an even deeper knowledge (Phil. 3:10).

Such passion is the driving force behind powerful prayer. Those who know God best pray most often and most fervently. Their love for Him compels them to know and serve Him better.

How about you? Is your knowledge of God intimate? Does the character of your prayers reveal that you’re in the process of knowing God?

Paul’s admonitions to “pray at all times in the Spirit” and “be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18) presuppose that you know God and desire to see His will fulfilled in His people. If not, you’ll never appreciate the importance of interceding on behalf of others.

Suggestions for Prayer; The martyred missionary Jim Elliot once prayed, “Lord, make my life a testimony to the value of knowing you.” Let that be your prayer each day.

For Further Study; Read 1 Chronicles 28.

  • What did God forbid David to do?
  • What would happen to Solomon if he failed to know and serve God?

Charles Stanley – A Fruitful Life

Charles Stanley

Proverbs 3:5-12

God has created us with a longing to know that our presence in this world counts. He also designed us to find the fulfillment of that desire through His Son Jesus Christ.

Dependence on God is central to an abundant life. Trusting Him with all our heart means giving Him control over our families, finances, jobs, and everything else. Today’s passage emphasizes how essential trust is to a fruitful life: we are cautioned against being wise in our own eyes and warned—twice—not to lean on our own understanding (3:5, 7).

When facing decisions, we can be tempted to gather information and choose the answer that looks right. But we can’t know all the facts or predict with certainty how others will respond. God, however, is omniscient. He “reads” hearts and perceives every thought; no aspect of our life escapes His notice (1 Chron. 28:9; Ps. 11:4), and He cares about everyone. That’s why He alone knows which decision is best for each situation.

The abundant life also involves acknowledging the Lord in all we do. Speaking about Him is just part of what it means to give Him recognition. As His children, we are to have a marked resemblance to our heavenly Father—in thoughts, attitudes, and actions. Our priorities are to reflect His, and our plans should fit with His purposes.

Life becomes fruitful as we surrender ourselves to the Lord and carry out His will. By allowing His Spirit to live through us (Gal. 2:20), we will find our lives characterized by significance and satisfaction.

 

 

 

 

 

Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – He’s in the Midst

dr_bright

“For where two or three gather together because they are Mine, I will be right there among them” (Matthew 18:20).

What better proof is there of the fact that Jesus is God, that He is omnipresent? As you and I gather with our little groups – whether two or three, or 200 – Jesus is there in the midst. And at the same time that wonderful promise applies to similar groups in Africa, Israel, China and anywhere else!

This general assertion is made to support the particular promise made to his apostles in verse 19. Those who meet in His name can be sure He is among them.

An omniscient, omnipotent God – and His Son Jesus Christ – are omnipresent (everywhere present at the same time)! What a glorious truth! Let your imagination soar: among the Masai tribe in Kenya, Africa, or the Quechua Indians in Ecuador – if they are meeting in that name which is above every name, even Jesus Christ our Lord, He is right there meeting with them.

Equally important, you and one or two friends meeting together in His name can have the assurance that He is right there meeting with you as well. And you can feel His presence – especially as you acknowledge the fact that He is there and begin to worship Him for who and what He is.

Joy of joys, God and Jesus Christ who meet with missionaries and national believers on the field and with church leaders in their councils also meet with you and me today.

Bible Reading: Acts 20:32-28

TODAY’S ACTION POINT: I will look for new opportunities to invoke His presence in my midst by fellowshipping with other believers in His name.

 

Presidential Prayer Team; C.P. – Conversation Starters

ppt_seal01

During the very first phone call in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell said, “Mr. Watson, come here. I want to see you.” In reply, his assistant came from the next room and told Bell he heard and understood.

God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.  I Corinthians 1:9

A conversation takes two. That’s obvious, but the same goes with your relationship with God. He calls people into fellowship of His Son and wants people from all over to call to Him (I Corinthians 1:2). When God speaks, He expects you to listen (Psalm 81:8), and when you speak, His “ears are open” to your prayers (I Peter 3:12). He also gave believers the Holy Spirit to aid communication. “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.” (Romans 8:26) Plus, as you commune with God, you’ll keep your love for Him burning bright and hot.

Call on the Lord. He is faithful to hear and answer your prayers. Pray He’ll extend His mercy and grace to the United States. And take a few moments to listen and reply to His words. You’ll enjoy the conversation.

Recommended Reading: Revelation 3:14-22

Charles Stanley – Condemned No More

Charles Stanley

Romans 8:33-39

Every person is born under condemnation. Because of Adam and Eve’s rebellious decisions in the garden of Eden, each person born since then has come into the world with an inherent sin nature. Consequently, everyone needs a Savior, and God has graciously and lovingly provided one in His Son Jesus Christ. Those who reject Him remain under condemnation. Their guilty verdict has not been overturned, so they owe the penalty for violating God’s laws.

Perhaps this seems unfair to you. It is important to remember that God has always facilitated our unfettered communion with Him, even though He alone is perfectly holy and righteous. The reason He created Adam and Eve with free will is that He didn’t want us to be robots—He wanted to enjoy real love and fellowship with His children.

But those first human beings fell because they made poor decisions, as any of us would have. How wonderful that God offered to restore our relationship with Him through Christ’s atoning sacrifice for our sins. He is the Creator, so we truly have no right to question His plan. And yet the Lord has been magnanimous and amazingly loving throughout history. We deserve nothing, but He’s given us everything—including access to Him at any time.

 

Instead of condemnation, eternal security is ours once we place trust in Jesus as Savior. Praise God! We’ve been liberated from the penalty of our sin and are free to live forever in Christ’s nurturing and instructive grace.

Charles Stanley – Encouragement for All Seasons

Deuteronomy 7:7-9

Spring, summer, fall, and winter—these are the seasons of the year. Life also has its seasons. Some are filled with joy, while others are characterized by difficulty. Take comfort because there is a principle from the Bible that can encourage and sustain you through every season: Our God is faithful.

We learn about this attribute of the Lord from passages like 1 Corinthians 1:9, where Paul says, “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” To say that God is faithful means He always does exactly what He says He will do.

How reassuring it is to know that He will keep His promises to His children and never leave their side, whatever “season” of life they are in. No matter how deep, how dark, how depressing, how hopeless, or how good things may seem, the child of God can count on the Father’s abiding presence.

So regardless of your present trials or triumphs, embrace these three truths:

1. God will be faithful to you because it is His very nature (Ps. 36:5).

2. God knows all about your situation; you are never alone in any season of life (Ps. 139:7-12).

3. God is omnipotent, so He has the power to meet every single need, and He knows how to move you through the various seasons of your life (Rom. 8:28).

Hold onto this fact: You will change and seasons will change, but our wonderful God is always the same. That means He won’t fail you, He won’t waver on you, and He won’t vary—you can fully rely on Him. And He will never forget about you; He is with you always. Great is His faithfulness!

Charles Stanley – Expressions of God’s Goodness

 

Psalm 103

We often think of God’s goodness in terms of our tangible blessings and upbeat events. While these surely are expressions of divine goodness, we should not interpret God’s love only by how He demonstrates it in positive circumstances. We often experience His goodness best in our darkest hours—in those situations, He shows Himself to be good in deeper ways, as He alone can (2 Cor. 12:9).

One way the Lord expresses goodness is through His mercy—the tender-hearted compassion He has for us. In the Bible, mercy is usually mentioned in the context of God’s concern for people who are needy or suffering. We constantly see Jesus filled with compassion and ministering because of this mercy (Mark 1:41). He healed many people who cried out to Him for mercy because they recognized their neediness (Matt. 9:27-29).

Remember, it wasn’t the self-righteous Pharisee who was blessed, but the sinful tax collector who realized that he didn’t deserve God’s favor and begged for mercy (Luke 18:9-14). In response to our distress, God offers comfort, not because we’ve earned it, but because He is good. Also keep in mind that through Jesus’ worthiness and sacrifice, all who trust Him as Savior have great worth in God’s eyes(2 Cor. 5:21).

Another expression of our heavenly Father’s goodness is grace. A just God cannot overlook sin, yet because of His infinite goodness and love, He chose to pay our penalty for us. We have access to God’s grace only through the blood of His Son Jesus Christ. Every day, we should remind ourselves of the Father’s extraordinary goodness to us and thank Him for it.

Greg Laurie – The Power of Christ’s Words

 

Christ’ passionate love for the world is evident in His statements from the Cross:

Statement One “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Luke 23:34

Do you realize that you are in need of the Father’s forgiveness?

 

Statement Two “Today you will with Me in Paradise.” Luke 23:43

Have you realized and confessed Jesus as your personal Savior?

 

Statement Three “Woman, behold your son.” John 19:26

Jesus is concerned for us and provides for all of us.

 

Statement Four “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” Matthew 27:46

Jesus was forsaken so we don’t have to be.

 

Statement Five “I thirst!” John 19:28

This personal statement reminds us that Jesus is not only God, but He also was man. Jesus identifies with our needs.

 

Statement Six “It is finished!” John 19:30

Jesus paid for our sins, and sin’s control over our lives is broken!

 

Statement Seven “Into Your hands I commit My spirit.” Luke 23:46

You can entrust your life into God’s hands.

 

How to Know God

You were designed to know God in a personal way—to have a relationship with Him, through His Son, Jesus Christ. How do you start a relationship with God?

1. Realize that you are a sinner.

No matter how good a life we try to live, we still fall miserably short of being a good person. That is because we are all sinners. The Bible says, “No one is good—not even one.” We cannot become who we are supposed to be without Jesus Christ.

2. Recognize that Jesus Christ died on the cross for you.

The Bible tells us that “God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while were still sinners.” This is the Good News, that God loves us so much that He sent His only Son to die in our place when we least deserved it.

3. Repent of your sin.

The Bible tells us, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away.” The word repent means to change our direction in life. Instead of running from God, we can run toward Him.

4. Receive Jesus Christ into your life.

Becoming a Christian is not merely believing some creed or going to church. It is having Christ Himself take residence in your life and heart. Jesus said, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in . . .” If you would like to have a relationship with Christ, simply pray this prayer and mean it in your heart.

“Dear Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner. I believe You died for my sins. Right now, I turn from my sins and open the door of my heart and life. I confess You as my personal Lord and Savior. Thank You for saving me. Amen.”

Charles Stanley – Genuine Justification

 

Romans 3:23-26

Jesus’ death was central to God’s plan of salvation. Scripture tells us the Son of Man had to be lifted up and all who trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior would be saved.(John 3:14-16) The cross was essential for God to accomplish His desire for us—that we would be redeemed and have a personal relationship with Him for all eternity.

Every one of us has violated God’s law, and justice requires that a penalty be paid. When we labor for the Lord and serve Him faithfully, we want Him to be just in rewarding us. But what about when we transgress against Him? We have a sin debt that must be paid, and because He is perfect and just, God cannot simply overlook offenses—atonement must be made.

In order for us to have a close personal relationship with God, there must be a way for imperfect, sin-stained man to approach the perfect, holy Creator. Therefore, the Father provided a substitute—His Son Jesus Christ—who took it upon Himself to pay our penalty. If we accept that payment on our behalf, God declares us no longer guilty, reconciling us to Himself so we can enjoy a right relationship with Him eternally (Rom. 8:6-10). There is no justification apart from the blood of Jesus Christ.

To be justified means to be declared “no longer guilty.” With His death on the cross, Jesus paid the price for our reconciliation. Through His shed blood, we are now sanctified. If we accept this priceless gift, it enables us to enjoy communion with Almighty God in this life and the next.

God’s Gift to Us (Part 1) – Greg Laurie

 

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  – John 3:17

When you’re a child, Christmas is all about receiving gifts. In December, your head is swimming with nothing but images of your favorite toys.

But the true message of Christmas is not the presents we give to one another. The true meaning is the gift that God gave to us, His Son Jesus Christ.

During the next two days, I want to point out to you three things about the gift God gave to us in that tiny manger in Bethlehem.

The first thing we want to realize about God’s gift to us is that it came in simple wrapping. Some people will go to great lengths to wrap presents beautifully. But God’s gift came to us not in beautiful, ornate wrapping, but in a dirty manger found in a cold cave in a little-known town called Bethlehem.

That’s the beauty of the Christmas event. Jesus took His place in a manger so that we might have a home in heaven. The Savior was not wrapped in satin sheets, but in common rags. There in a manger rested the greatest gift in the plainest of wrapping.

The second thing I want to point out about God’s gift to us is that we don’t deserve it. Consider this: God gave us the ultimate gift of His Son Jesus Christ while we were still sinning against Him (see Romans 5:8).

We did nothing whatsoever to merit or deserve His gift. That is the amazing truth of Christmas. Despite who we are, God sent His Son so “that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

With Christmas just days away, begin to prepare your heart for the celebration of the birth of our Savior. Meditate on the fact that Jesus was born to die so that we might live.

Christ’s SuperiorNature – John MacArthur

 

“Of the angels He says, ‘Who makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire.’ But of the Son He says, ‘Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever'” (Heb. 1:7-8).

People today who claim that Jesus was just a man, an angel, a prophet, or some inferior god are in error and bring upon themselves the curse of God. The Bible, and especially the writer of Hebrews, are clear about who Christ is.

First, the writer deals with the nature of angels when he says, “Who makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire.” “Makes” simply means “to create.” The antecedent of “who” is Christ. Therefore it is obvious that Christ created the angels.

They are also His possession: “His angels.” They are His created servants, who do not operate on their own initiative, but on the direction of Christ.

But the greatest difference between the nature of angels and Christ is that He is the eternal God. The Father says to the Son, “Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever.” That is one of the most powerful, clear, emphatic, and irrefutable proofs of the deity of Christ in Scripture.

Jesus throughout His ministry claimed equality with God. He said, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30). The apostle John closed his first epistle by saying, “We know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding, in order that we might know Him who is true, and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life” (1 John 5:20).

God the Son came to help us understand that God is truth and that Christ Himself is the true God. Our faith is based on the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Suggestion for Prayer: Ask God to give you a greater understanding of the reality that Jesus is in fact God.

For Further Study: Read John 1:1-18 and mark the verses that define Christ’s relationship to God. If an unbeliever were to ask you what that passage means, how would you answer him or her?