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Saturday, April 8, 2023

4-8-2023    Glory to God

                                                                                            Celebrate Jesus, Celebrate

April 9, we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus from the tomb.  For approximately thirty-three years, He lived with us and as we do in this world, exposed to the same things which we are exposed.  On ‘Easter Sunday’ we celebrate His victory over the grave, that is, sin and death.  That is His transition from His earthly existence into His eternal existence.  We see His promise to us that, in Him, our lives may be resurrected from this worldly existence into eternal life in Him, through Him in this life and with Him, forever.

Jesus has the authority (exousia G1849) from God the Father as well as the power (dunamis G 1411) to do what He did.  Why because the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost are one.  In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with God and the Word was God (John 1:1).  Philip asked Jesus to show them the Father.  Jesus’ response “…he who has seen Me has seen the Father …” (John 14:8-11).  The angel tells Joseph not to be concerned about taking Mary as his wife for in her womb, she carries our Savior, Jesus.  Then the angel cited Isaiah, the prophet that he should call the child’s name ‘Emmanuel’, that is ‘God is with us’ (Mat. 1:28, Isa. 7:14).  We know that God is Spirit and that we should worship Him in Spirit and in truth (John 4:24).  We know that the Holy Ghost is the Spirit of God which, in the Greek, is pneuma, ‘the breath of God’ (G 4151).  In the beginning God created all things.  As He spoke, His breath carried His Words into action (Gen. 1:1-26).  In chapter one “he said”, nine times.  Nine time that the Spirit went into specific action.  And we know that God can share His Spirit with us.  Just before He ascended back into heaven, Jesus told the disciples to wait in Jerusalem a few days for then the Holy Ghost would come upon them (Acts 1:4-9).  He would be in them [us] (John 14:17).  And He did (and has for us) (Acts 2:1-16, Joel 2:28).  Ergo, Jesus is the ultimate authority to live this life and do the things to which He has called us (John 14:12-13).  Jesus sent the apostles (Matt. 10:7-8) then the 70 disciples (Luke 10:1-17) giving them power (authority) to heal sickness and disease and to cast out devils.  And with the Holy Ghost in us, we also have the same power (authority) Jesus had.  So we see that it is God working in us through the Holy Ghost (who dwells within our heart) in Jesus’ name because we keep His commandments of love (John 14:10-15) allowing Him to work in us and through us.  Glory to God!

And just what are Jesus’ commandments?  To love!  The scribes came to test Jesus by asking “What is the greatest commandment?”  Jesus responded “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength.  Then, love your neighbor as yourself.”  (Mark 12:28-31, Matt. 22:37-40).  Why? Because God is love (1 John 4:8).  And everyone who knows God, loves (1 John 4:16-21).  For the Law and everything the prophets said stems from God’s law of love (Matt. 22:40).  Jesus also tested the Hebrew religious by asking them the same question and they responded correctly (Luke 10:25-28).  By the way, if you haven’t figured it out yet, the whole bible is God explaining the capacity of His love towards us.  Amen?

Jesus is our authority and ability to love – God and our fellow man.

So, how do we express our gratitude for the wonderful gift God has bestowed upon us?

Of course, living for and in Jesus is foremost.  We start by acknowledging what Jesus has done for us.  That is confessing our sin before Him then declare Him as our Lord and Savior as we give Him thanksgiving for His blood which was shed on the cross, cleansing us.  He has given us access into His kingdom - forever. 

He is the one who gives us an existence with the Father throughout all eternity. 

We then commit to serve God and only God, with all that we are.  We acknowledge that God is the ultimate authority in all things and that the Father and Son are, indeed, one.  Then, through Jesus, we become one in Them.

We start living for Him by learning the depth and breadth of His love so we may also live (this life) in Him.  We strive to allow God to become so much of our life that people might say about us what Jesus said about His relationship with Father (John 17:21).  That is because the love of God is so evident in our lives others will have seen the essence (love) of God in us. 

This doesn’t happen overnight and to realize the full impact in our lives, will take a lifetime.  The question to us is “How quickly can we truly yield our life over to the Lord?”  Some are quick learners and doers while others (like me) take a bit longer (lol).  What I’m saying is that chronological age really isn’t a factor.  Why?  Some give their life to the Lord early in life (chronologically) and give Him full access as they continue to grow in Him.  While others ask Him into their life later in life.  And we all grow at different paces.  The quicker we learn God’s love and yield to His direction, the quicker we grow spiritually.  The key is to always stay the course and run a good race (Heb. 12:1).  Know that we have done all that we can do in this life (2 Tim. 4:7).  Remember that as we seek God, He will gives us the strength of an eagle in flight to finish our race (Isa. 40:31).  The eagle has very keen eyesight and doesn’t lose sight of its goal.  And that crown of life is the goal that awaits each and every one of us (James 1:12). 

In doing all this we need to always give Father thanksgiving and praise, the glory for all that He has, is and will do in our lives (1 Chron. 16:28-29, Psalm 11:1-10, Heb. 13:15).  Even in those things which don’t seem so good.  God, for our benefit, corrects us whom He loves (Heb. 12:6) so we stay the course.

Sing praises to our Lord.  I’m not saying ‘just’ listen to songs that uplift God and our relationship with Him, but find the lyrics and actually sing along with those songs.  It is soothing to listen and it brings peace into our heart, but singing along with songs of praise will uplift our spirit!  Don’t be afraid to get excited about our God.  Praise God.  Praise Him in His sanctuary.  Praise Him where ever His power is.  Praise Him for all that He has, is and will do.  He is above all!  Praise him with our ‘wind’ instruments.  Praise Him with our stringed instruments.  Praise Him with our percussion instruments.  Praise Him with any instrument we have access to use.  So with our voice, let’s praise our Lord with even our very breath (Psalm 150:1-6).  Get the picture?

Let’s raise all that we have and are up to the Lord as we celebrate His resurrection day!  We have the promise of our resurrection through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  So it is also our day of resurrection.  Our resurrection means a new beginning in our lives. God asks Israel to remember the glory they experienced when He first brought them out of Egypt and established His temple.  Then compare that to where they were at in Haggai’s day (Haggai 2:1-23) and us today.   God promised Israel that the state of their latter house would be greater than their first (Haggai 2:9).  He promises us that in the incoming Spiritual explosion, the house of the Lord will burst forth in new power and glory! 

Welcome to a new day.  Welcome to the first day in our new beginnings.  Glory be to the one and only true, living God.  hallelujah!


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