Saturday, March 22, 2014

From Lost to Hope

The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God." They are corrupt, they have committed abominable deeds; there is no one who does good. The LORD has looked down from heaven upon the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, who seek after God. They have all turned aside, together they have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one. (Psalm 14:1-3)

And Jesus answered and said to them: Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. (Matthew 24:5-8)

Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know. Jesus said...I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:1-4,6)

These things I have spoken to you while being present with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. You have heard Me say to you, ‘I am going away and coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, ‘I am going to the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I. “And now I have told you before it comes, that when it does come to pass, you may believe. I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me. But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do. Arise, let us go from here. (John 14:25-31)

Wow. We are admonished for being a godless, sin filled, imperfect people. And we are. Yet besides being pointedly shown our sins, God shows us there is hope. He provided a way which leads to righteousness. His name is Jesus. God sent His only Son to become the propitiation for our sins. He became the sacrificial Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. Yes, takes. He still does today. He died once for all 2,000 years ago but that sacrifice is as legitimate today if we choose to receive Him as our Lord and Savior.

When we do He brings His peace that passes all understanding. And that's the beauty of it. Despite all we see in the world, the wars, famines, pestilence, persecution, we can be above it all, in Christ. ...those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31). We can be part of the population that God calls righteous, those whose thoughts are on the things of God and heaven.

Praise God He provided this way, an answer to the troubles we encounter in this world. His message is simple: Jesus. The Apostle Paul said this: And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. (1Corinthians 2:1-2)  That is the simplicity. It is the truth. It is the truth that saves.

Jesus will return. First for those faithful who have placed their trust in Him, who have sought wisdom through His Word, recognized the signs of the last days, looked up in anticipation for His second coming. Then to rule and reign on earth again with those who sought Him. Then in heaven for eternity. Will He find you faithful?

...God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ... ...I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.” For the wrath of God is revealed 
from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. (Romans 1:16-19, 1Thessalonians 5:9)

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