A Life of Eternal Security

We all have a need for eternal security. We can’t really live life abundantly unless we are eternally secure. How can we know for sure that no matter what happens if we die that we will spend eternity with the Lord?

John 1:29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!

This was the first time that Jesus was identified as the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. If you notice the word sin is singular. The word is literally iniquity, which means that someone is their own god or lord. They want to run their own life and do not want anyone to tell them what to do. This was the original sin in the garden. Adam and Eve did not obey God but did what they wanted to do. They committed iniquity. All of us come into the world committing iniquity. Toddlers want to do it their way. We want to make our own decisions. We want to choose our destiny. This is the sin that we need to repent of…wanting to be our own lord rather than the One who rightfully belongs on the throne of our life and that is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Romans 10:12,13 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Whoever calls upon the Lord Jesus Christ for Him to be their Lord will not only receive Him as their Lord but He will become their Savior.

Matthew 1:21 She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”

When you become His child, then you become one of His people and He will save you from your sins. The word sins is plural because we commit many different sins that ensnare us and enslave us but He sets us free when we come to Him.

John 8:36 So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.

He also gives us His Spirit as the surety for our eternal salvation and it when the Holy Spirit comes to live in us then He bears witness with our spirit that we are truly saved.

Romans 8:15,16 For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God,

The Lord says that we can know that we are His child and have eternal life, not hope or guess but know.

I John 5:13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

 

 

A Life that Can Do All Things

A life that can do all thing is only a life that can do all things through the strength and ability that God provides. The Christian life is the sweetest life ever known but it only comes from a dynamic relationship with the Lord Jesus.

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

There is a prayer that expresses it well and it is “I can’t, You never said I could. You can, You always said You would.” He lives the life through you in the power of His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the gift He gives us when we receive Him. He said that, “He would never leave us or forsake us.” He is a present help. If some things seem hard to do or hard to understand then give these matters to Him and ask Him to help you.

Matthew 11:29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

If something seems too hard in the Christian life then maybe you are taking a burden that He never intended you to have. This is the only time in Scripture where Jesus describes Himself. He is gentle and humble of heart. If you truly follow Him then you will find rest for your soul.

Romans 8:5-8 For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

These verses reveal one of the principles of the victorious Christian life. If you are living in the flesh then you will experience death to your soul, which is the defeat you feel and the regret and remorse. If you are living according to the Spirit then you will want to obey and please Him. The flesh is hostile to the Lord and the things of God but the Spirit is alive to the Lord and the things  of God. Ask your self if there is anything that is feeding your flesh. There are so many things today that feed our flesh and when we feed our flesh we will not desire the Lord and it will be impossible to obey Him. After a while often the result is doubting our salvation. It is the Spirit that gives us assurance of our salvation.

Romans 13:14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.

The word lusts in the Greek literally means desires. Our flesh has desires that want to be satisfied. The only problem is that they don’t satisfy but leave the Christian feeling empty. They may get for a moment what they want but then once that moment passes then they are lonely on the inside and the temptation is to fill that emptiness comes again but it only increases the emptiness.

James 1:14-17 But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

If one will only flee from temptation and call on the Lord for help then in time they will receive the good gift that the Lord has for them. We are often tempted right before the Lord gives His good gifts. He wants to fulfill your desires.

Psalm 34:10 The young lions do lack and suffer hunger; But they who seek the Lord shall not be in want of any good thing.

A Life Under His Wings

Every young lady wants her dreams to come true, to become the person that she longs to be,to live life to the fullest and to feel safe and secure. So how do you run the race of life…so that you can be free of guilt, free of regrets, free of bondage, free of bitterness, free of depression, free of envy,  free of self pity and live the abundant life, that is, life to the fullest? Is it possible? Yes, it is very much possible and is a gift that has been promised to us. The first step needs to be taken before you will ever know life to the fullest. You need to receive the One who gives this life so that you can live securely under His love, care and protection.

Psalm 91:4 “He will cover you with His pinions, And under His wings you may seek refuge. His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.”

You alone will either experience this life with great joy and gladness or your life will have the greatest of heartaches and sorrow. Wisdom is making the right choices so that you can have the desired outcome.

Proverbs 9:12 If you are wise, you are wise for yourself, And if you scoff, you alone bear it.

Wisdom is the right application of knowledge and scoffing is turning your back on knowledge. Joy and gladness is the outcome of making the right choice and heartache and sorrow comes from making the wrong decisions in life. If you act wisely then you will be glad but if you scoff you will regret it. He came that you might have life and live it to the fullest.

John 10:10 I came that they may have life and may have it abundantly.

The wisest decision you can ever make is to give your heart completely to the One who made it and knows you better than anyone else ever will and who loves you perfectly. Not only does He love you but He is looking for people that He may strongly support. The opposite of choosing to give your heart to Him is to act foolishly and feel like you know what is best for your life. If, you do not choose Him then you will have drama and friction with others. It usually begins in your family with those whom you love the most and who love you.

II Chronicles 16:9 For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His. You have acted foolish in this. Indeed, from now on you will surely have wars.

His love is the only perfect love.

I John 4:18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

You can trust Him completely because He loves you perfectly. When you give your heart to Him, He takes all of your fears and He also took your punishment for everything you have ever done so you do not need to fear giving your heart to Him. When you give your heart to Him, you also give your sins, your guilt, your failures, your regrets, your longings, your hopes and your dreams. He takes the punishment that you deserve and gives you a life that you do not deserve. It is a gift from Him to all who will trust Him completely. You must receive the gift of becoming His child, a child of God.

John 1:12,13 “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name; who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”

Receiving Jesus Christ to be your Lord and Savior means that God, the Father becomes your Heavenly Father and He gives you His Spirit. He also calls you His Friend and He says that He will never leave you nor forsake you. Receiving Him means that you are asking Him to rule in your life and that you will follow Him. He who made you will only lead you in a way that is good for you. He is good and loved you perfectly. He says that those who follow Him will hear His voice because He also becomes their “Good Shepherd”, who laid down His life for them. This is the first step to knowing Him, to seeing Him and to hearing Him.

A Life of Great Worth

The value of anything is what someone would pay for it. If this is true then what is your life worth? It is of great worth if you know the Lord because you have been bought with a price, which is the blood of Christ. He paid for you with His life.

I Corinthians 6:20 For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

The incredible price that you were bought with is the blood of Christ. You have been redeemed and bought out of slavery into freedom through the blood of Jesus.

I Peter 1:18,19 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.

All the money in the world could not have bought your freedom. It took the life of One who loved you and have His life for you.

Revelation 1:5 and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood—

Not only did He redeem you and set you free but He has made you to be a kingdom and to represent men and women before the Father Himself as His priests.

Revelation 1:6 and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

However, not only are we to be priests to the Lord but we are His spokesmen to the world. We are to share the Good News of God’s love for mankind and His redeeming work of the blood of Jesus on the cross and how He was raised again to live forever and to give eternal life to those who believe in Him.

Jeremiah 15:19a Therefore, thus says the Lord,
“If you return, then I will restore you—
Before Me you will stand;
And if you extract the precious from the worthless,
You will become My spokesman.

The Bible says that those who do not know the Lord are worth less.

I Samuel 2:12 Now the sons of Eli were worthless men; they did not know the Lord

The heart of the wicked is worth little.

Proverbs 10:20 The tongue of the righteous is as choice silver,
The heart of the wicked is worth little.

Only Jesus Christ can restore the image of God within a person who has been destroyed through sin. Only Jesus Christ can give us a new heart and take our old sinful heart. Only Jesus Christ can transform our lives into the image of God according to how He designed and created us. Only God can do the work of salvation but He has chosen those who know Him to be His ambassadors and to tell others.

II Corinthians 5:20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.

Jesus Christ is the King of kings and He has made us to be His kingdom, His priests and His ambassadors to the world that the world might be reconciled to God. What an incredible privilege and joy.

II Corinthians 5:18,19 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

 

 

A Life that Knows the Truth of God

Jesus Christ said that He is the truth. There is no truth apart from God. Truth never changes and is the only constant that we can build our lives on and put our hope in. God’s Word will never fail you nor can you change it. There are many theories and speculations in the world but they are constantly changing and are the result of man’s reasonings which will fail.

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.

God’s Word is truth and when we live by it then it will set us apart from the rest of the world and will define our lives.

John 17:17 Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.

God and His Word are equal.

Psalm 138:2 I will bow down toward Your holy temple
And give thanks to Your name for Your lovingkindness and Your truth;
For You have magnified Your word according to all Your name.

You can not truly worship the Lord apart from His truth for those who worship in spirit and truth are the ones whom the Father seeks to be His worshipers.

John 4:23,24 But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

If you want to be His disciple then you must know His truth which is found in His word.

John 8:31,32 So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine;and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”

When you know God’s truth then the truth will make you free. Many people are free on the outside but not free on the inside. They have allowed some sin to have dominion over them and to control them. You can not set yourself free from sin but God can and He wants to through His truth. Are you struggling within with some particular sin that you know the Lord is not pleased with and if others knew then you would feel ashamed? Come to the Lord and He will set you free and you will be free indeed. He knows our weaknesses and we all have them so come to Him. He loves you and will not disgrace you but He is full of grace and truth and will show you His tender love. He does not condemn you.

Psalm 119:132,133 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
After Your manner with those who love Your name.
Establish my footsteps in Your word,
And do not let any iniquity have dominion over me.

 

A Life of Grace and Truth

Jesus Christ was full of grace and truth. Faith is coming to Jesus and it is God’s grace that allows us to come to Him. Salvation is the gift we receive by grace through faith.

Ephesians 2:8,9 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

It is Jesus that saves us through His Word and sets us free from our sin. His Words are truth. The gospel (the good news) that Jesus brought to us is the power of God for salvation. Jesus Christ and His Word and truth are equal. The truth became flesh and dwelt among us.

John 1:14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Jesus Christ is God and when He dwelt among men they saw His glory which is who the Father is and that is, Jesus was full of grace and truth. Grace is the opposite of shame. When someone is disgraced then they are shamed. Sin brings shame and disgrace. Jesus came to take away our sin and shame and to give us grace.

Proverbs 14:34 Righteousness exalts a nation,
But sin is a disgrace to any people.

When we do what is right it will be expressed in grace and truth. When Joseph thought Mary, his betrothed, had been unfaithful to him then he, being a righteous man did not want to shame or disgrace her but sought to do what is right and loving by sending her away secretly.

Matthew 1:19 And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly.

Jesus took the attention off of the woman caught in adultery. She was being disgraced and He, being righteous, stooped even lower than those around and wrote on the ground so that the eyes of her accusers would be taken off of her and on to Him. He took away her disgrace by standing in the gap between the accusers and her.

John 8:3-11 The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery, and having set her in the center of the court, they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in adultery, in the very act. Now in the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women; what then do You say?” They were saying this, testing Him, so that they might have grounds for accusing Him. But Jesus stooped down and with His finger wrote on the ground. But when they persisted in asking Him, He straightened up, and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. When they heard it, they began to go out one by one, beginning with the older ones, and He was left alone, and the woman, where she was, in the center of the court.

Jesus does this for each one of us. We have all sinned and are worthy of much disgrace but Jesus stood in the gap between us and the devil, who is our accuser. He stooped down to earth and made us great by taking our sin and punishment. He took our condemnation and has stood in the gap and faced our accuser for us so that we might be free from condemnation.

Romans 8:1-3 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh,

Just as Jesus stood up and asked the woman where her accusers were, for they were gone, so Jesus says the same to all of us, “I do not condemn you, either. Go, from now on sin no more.

John 8:10,11 Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.”

Are you struggling with something that you know that you should stop? Is the devil secretly accusing you? Satan is a bully and a bully always goes after one who is weak at the moment. Satan won’t go after Jesus because he has already lost to the Lord Jesus Christ but he tries to get to Jesus through us.

I Peter 5:8 Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.

The Bible says to resist the devil and he will flee from you. Resist him through God’s Word and the name of Jesus Christ and he will flee.

James 4:7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

Get in God’s Word and keep resisting the devil until you see the victory. Keep firm in your faith in the Lord. After you have struggled and suffered for a little while then Jesus Himself will perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

I Peter 5:9-10 But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world. After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

 

 

 

 

A Life with Love Listens and Hears

Love hears because love is listening for the voice or cry of the one whom they love. Every mother understands this fact. Even in her sleep she is always listening for the cries of her children. She knows their cries and their voices and each one is unique. She knows their sounds because she loves her children. Her heart is attentive to them.

But we proved to be gentle among you, as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children. I Thessalonians 2:7

So also the Lord hears our cries and He delivers His children from all of their troubles. He is attentive to each one of us.

The righteous cry, and the Lord hears And delivers them out of all their troubles. Psalm 34:17

The Lord loves us and wants us to cry out to Him. He does hear our voice and the sound of our prayers. He hears our cries of distress.

I love the Lord, because He hears
My voice and my supplications.
Because He has inclined His ear to me,
Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live. Psalm 116:1,2

Just as the Lord hears us He also wants us to listen to Him and hear Him. He said over and over again when He was on earth, “He who has ears to hear let him hear”.

Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life. John 5:24

It is through hearing His Word that we believe in Jesus Christ and receive eternal life.

He who is of God hears the words of God; for this reason you do not hear them, because you are not of God.” John 8:47

An unbeliever can read the Bible but the unbeliever will not be changed because they are only reading words with their mind. When a person becomes a Christian then they will read God’s Word with their mind and heart and it will no longer be just reading words but they will hear God speak to them through His Words.

So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. Romans 10:17

It is through hearing God’s Word that we receive faith. Is your faith little? If you struggle in your faith then read God’s Words over and over again. Ask the Lord to increase your faith. Faith and fear can not reside in the same vessel. Are you fearful? Get into God’s Word and stay in God’s Word until you know His peace.

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. John 14:27

The Lord hears your cries and He listens to your prayers. He loves you. If you will come to Him then you will know His comfort and His peace. He will be with you in trouble.

As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; Isaiah 66:13a

Being a Christian is having a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. He hears the cries and prayers of His children and He wants us to listen to Him also. He speaks to us and He wants us to talk to Him. Being a Christian is far more than just believing intellectually in God and believing that Jesus Christ is God’s Son. Being a Christian is having a living faith that lives on His promises and follows Him in obedience. When a person is a true Christian then they will no longer “listen” to the world but they will “listen” to the Lord. For this reason, their lifestyle will be different. They will no longer want to do the things they did before. They will choose different friends if their nonChristian friends do not want to listen to the Lord. The Christian’s values will change. The Christian will have become a new person in Christ for they will have heard from God. God is still calling for those who will listen.

Therefore, just as the Holy Spirit says, “Today if you hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts Hebrews 3:7,8a

The Lord says that “Today” is the day of salvation. If you hear His voice then come to Him. Do not harden your heart for you do not know what tomorrow holds and you do not know if you will hear His voice again or if you will have another chance.

for He says, “At the acceptable time I listened to you,
And on the day of salvation I helped you.” Behold, now is “the acceptable time,” behold, now is “the day of salvation”— II Corinthians 6:2

He hears you because He loves you. He is listening for your prayer and cry to Him.

A Life that Avoids Immorality

There is nothing but much pain and grief to the person who becomes immoral. The pain eventually leads to bitterness and bitterness destroys the soul. All of us have the seeds of immorality within us so how do we avoid becoming immoral? An immoral person is one who satisfies their fleshy desires at the expense of someone else. It can be sexual immorality, greed with money, desire for power or prestige, gossip and slander, or anything else that is against God’s Laws. Immorality destroys. He made His laws and has shown us His ways for our good and not because He wants to withhold anything from us to be mean to us, but that we can experience His love and have loving relationships with others. There is no trust in any relationship apart from good morals.

Romans 1:21-25 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures. Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

We came into the world knowing that there was a God. However, when we do not honor Him as God or thank Him for His many blessings and goodness to us then we become fools and our heart becomes darkened. We will start to think that man is wiser than God. For this reason the Lord gives us over to the lusts of our hearts which causes us to become impure and immoral.

Romans 1:26,27 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.

We all also came into the world with an impure heart and that is what causes us to do the things that lead to further impurity. Our conscience restrains us from many actions but when our hearts become hardened then we no longer hear our conscience and have that natural restraint that God gives to us. Morality is doing the right thing in every relationship and situation and treating people with respect and honor. A woman is immoral when she allows a man to sexually take advantage of her and a man is immoral when he takes advantage of a woman sexually. Sexual morality is within marriage only and marriage is between a man and a woman. Homosexuality is sexual immorality and every other form of sexual behavior outside of marriage is immoral. There can also be sexual immorality within marriage. What is not natural is immoral.

Romans 1:28-32 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

When the Lord gives us over to a depraved mind then we will not only do the things that are wrong and destructive for us but we will give hearty approval to others who practive the same. The only way that we can avoid immorality is through the precious and magnificent promises that He has given to all who believe in Him.

II Peter 1:2-4 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; seeing 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. For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.

As we grow in the knowledge of the Lord then grace and peace will be multiplied to us. We will experience His diving power which leads to life and godliness. It is through the knowledge of Him that we come to know His promises and it is through them that we become partakers of the divine nature and escape the corruption that is in the world through lust.

May His grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure. There is no comparison to this kind of life lived with moral excellence and to those who live this way they don’t want to go back to a life that is controlled by the lusts, deceit and destruction of immorality. High morals is the foundation of trust and where there is no trust then there is no love. Without love we only exist but do not thrive. God is love and He set good morals as necessary for love.

 

A Life with Love Lives By Faith

There can not be love without faith. We must love by faith. Faith is doing the right thing without the need to see results. Faith is trusting One greater than ourselves. Faith is not blind faith but living on the promises of One who is faithful. There is only One who had perfect faith and that is Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ lived a life of perfect faith when He was on earth. He trusted His Father in heaven completely.

But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power. Acts 2:24

Jesus Christ did not raise Himself from the dead. The Father raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Jesus Christ went to the cross trusting the Father completely to raise Him from the dead.

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:5-8

Jesus Christ is God and equal to God in every way but He emptied Himself and took the form of a servant and was made in the likeness of men. He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death on a cross. He could only do this because He trusted in God the Father completely to be faithful to raise Him from the dead.

Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works. John 14:10

Jesus did not speak His Words but He spoke only what the Father wanted Him to speak. It was the Father abiding in Jesus that did all the works of God that were done through Jesus Christ on earth. Jesus did not do miracles and works with His own power but it was the Father who did these works through him.

I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. John 5:30

Jesus had to study the Old Testament and be taught by the Father. He had to learn what the Father wanted Him to do. Jesus had to learn the promises of God that the Father had given to Him in the Scriptures.

So Jesus said, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me. John 8:28

Jesus obeyed the Father completely and lived a life of faith in the promises of God. Jesus did not speak or act on His own initiative but He trusted in the Father completely.

For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak. John 12:49

Jesus Christ has not asked His followers to do anything that He, Himself did not do on earth when He walked among men. He went to to the cross in faith and was raised so that He might be the first born from the dead. He lived a life of faith and obedience on earth as He has called us to do. He learned through Scripture what the Father’s will was for Him. He allowed the Father to abide in Him and He abided in the Father. He did not speak His Words but the Words of God. He did nothing on His own initiative except to obey and love the Father. Love, faith and obedience is a choice that we must do on our own initiative.

No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.” John 10:18

Love must live by faith believing in, trusting in and obeying the One who loves us far more than we can imagine. He is faithful. Love Him and leave the results to Him.

For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.” Romans 10:11

Not only will you not be disappointed but the Lord has so much in store for the One who loves Him that you can not even fathom how great His love is for you. If you were to lay your head on your pillow and think of the greatest thing that God could do for you then He could still say that He can top it.

but just as it is written, “Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard,
And which have not entered the heart of man,
All that God has prepared for those who love Him.” I Corinthians 2:9

The life of faith is a mystery to those who do not know God. To those who know the Lord then their heart’s desire is to live for Him and to please Him. They have realized that He is the only One who can satisfy the longings of our heart.

Whom have I in heaven but You?
And besides You, I desire nothing on earth.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:25,26

Love lives by faith and the one who loves God lives by faith. When we love others we love by faith. A husband and wife love each other by faith and a parent loves their children by faith. We love our friends and neighbors by faith. We even love our enemies by faith. Faith is doing what the Lord wants us to do and leaving the outcome to Him.

And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him. Hebrews 11:6

A Life with Love Shows Mercy in Justice

When Cain’s offering was not accepted by God, rather than doing what was right he did what was wrong and he murdered his brother, Abel, whose offering God had accepted. When we do wrong we can still do what is right. The choice is ours.

And the Lord had regard for Abel and for his offering; but for Cain and for his offering He had no regard. So Cain became very angry and his countenance fell. Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.” Genesis 4:4b-7

It may be humbling but we can still do what is right and if we do what is right then we will be glad and our countenance will reflect it. The Lord gives us the opportunity to humble ourselves before Him so that we might receive His grace which enables us to do what is right no matter how great the sin.

But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6

His grace will always measure up to the measure of the sin. One aspect of His grace is the strength to do what needs to be done to do what the Lord wants to be done.

but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 5:21b,22

If you mess up or sin once or a million times you can still turn away from sin and turn to the Lord to begin doing what is right. Cain could still have done what was right or he could do what was wrong. The choice is still our choice. The wages of sin is death. It is death to us spiritually and it is death to our soul and death to our body. If we will do what is right then the Lord will meet us and help us.

You meet him who rejoices in doing righteousness,
Who remembers You in Your ways. Isaiah 64:5a

Cain was jealous of his brother and killed him. Cain did not love his brother but he hated him.

For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another; not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother’s were righteous. I John 3:11,12

How much easier it is for us to love someone else when we have more than they do. However, when someone becomes more successful and has more money, receives more honor or is accepted more then that love can easily turn to hate.

Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; I John 3:15a

Sin begins in the heart but if it is not quickly checked and confessed then it will lead to action. Cain did not plan to kill his brother. Most of us don’t plan to sin but we have allowed sin to take root in our heart and then to master us. Sin is a cruel master and when Cain heard his punishment it was too hard to bear. The Lord spoke to Cain.

He said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to Me from the ground. Now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. When you cultivate the ground, it will no longer yield its strength to you; you will be a vagrant and a wanderer on the earth.” Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is too great to bear! Behold, You have driven me this day from the face of the ground; and from Your face I will be hidden, and I will be a vagrant and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.” Genesis 4:10-14

When Cain poured out his heart to the Lord then the Lord heard him and showed him mercy. The Lord is a just God but He is also merciful. How important it is to show mercy to those to whom we have to show justice. This is such an important truth for parents when they need to discipline their child. There can be no love without justice but love must be shown in justice so that the one who receives justice should not despair.

So the Lord said to him, “Therefore whoever kills Cain, vengeance will be taken on him sevenfold.” And the Lord appointed a sign for Cain, so that no one finding him would slay him. Genesis 4:15

Many a regret comes from an action in the emotion of the moment. Cain messed up privately in his worship with the Lord and the Lord reproved him privately. The Lord had not told anyone. Cain told his brother and when they were alone he killed him.

Cain told Abel his brother. And it came about when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. Genesis 4:8

Jealousy is a sickness of the heart that can destroy us from the inside out. It is a secret sin that comes from insecurity. The best way to deal with jealousy is to get it out in the open. Go to someone who walks with the Lord and who you can trust and confess your sin of jealousy to them and ask them to pray for you.

Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. James 5:16

The Lord is faithful, righteous and able to cleanse and heal us if we will confess our sins. He can also restore our relationships and heal our marriages and homes.

If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. I John 1:8,9

In God’s righteousness and faithfulness to His Word there is justice but in His love He shows us mercy when we come to Him and pour out our heart to Him.