Unabridged Christianity Monday, Jan 7 2019 

Born Again

John 3:8
The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

Being born again is a basic Christian principle that Jesus taught Nicodemus.

We will look today at evidences of the rebirth. The Christian life manifests these features. The number and degree of these manifestations will vary from person to person depending upon their growth and state of maturity.

Last time, we reviewed that Christians hunger and thirst after righteousness and they also manifest some of the fruits of the Spirit.

There are three sets of fruits. One set has to do with our relationship with each other; patience, gentleness and goodness.

2 Peter 1:5-7

And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;

And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;

And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.

1 John 3:14
14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren.

Acts 2:42-45

42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.

44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common;

45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.

They are members of the Christian family. You have heard it said that blood is thicker than water. Christians are many times closer with brothers and sisters in Christ than with their own natural family. The seed within them draws them together because of their “like nature”.

Loving and liking are two different things. Liking comes natural. But loving the brethren is when you love someone that you don’t necessarily like. Christians treat other Christians in love even when they don’t like them because they are brothers in Christ and are bound by certain ties.

I’m not talking about a nodding acquaintance with people or a social club where you do activities with one another. There is a love here. Love is attracted to love. We have the same outlook on life, the same understanding of life. Birds of a feather flock together. People who are born again “speak the same language”.

1 Corinthians 2:12-15

12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

Born again people have a new language. Heart speaks to heart. We share “family secrets”. We share these with one another but they are not shed abroad to the world. They won’t understand them because they are spiritually discerned.

We are all fighting the same enemy. We are Christian solders marching as to war. Our love for one another is increased because we share the same fox hole. There are no atheists in fox holes.

We are all looking to the same glory. We are in the world but not of the world. We are all looking forward to the coming of Christ and His eternal kingdom.

Do you love the brethren? How can we know?

First, one becomes aware of the relationship at once. You recognize a brother immediately. It is intuitive, instinctive. This can happen with total strangers. It does not matter what denomination you are. You are both “children of God”. That is recognizable.

Second, this relationship of being brethren counts with us more than anything else. Not looks, nationality, color, race-doesn’t matter. Paul who was a Jew was apostle to the Gentiles. This was the most important thing that ever happened to him.

When a person is born again he loves his brethren in Christ even more than his own brother that is not born again. It is the divine seed within that creates the deeper tie.

Do you feel awkward in the presence of Christian people?

A Christian is one who prefers the society of the brethren to the best society that the world can afford.

Malachi 3:16
16 Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another: and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name.

We have a common eternity. We are concerned for one another. We care about one another. Remember when Peter was in prison and the whole church were praying together?

1 Corinthians 12:13
13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

Does it bother you when you hear about the persecution of Christians around the world?

1 John 3:14
14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.

Can you bear with your brethren? Are you longsuffering with them?

Titus 3:3-6

For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.

But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour.

When you are born of God you forgive things that in the natural you would not because God forgave us freely, we ought so to forgive and love one another. “Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors”.


Advertisements

God’s Actions Sunday, Dec 9 2018 

The scripture for today may be found in the gospel of John chapter 1 verse 16:
16 For of His fullness [a]we have all received, and [b]grace upon grace.

When Jesus baptizes us with His Holy Spirit at once He begins a work in us which includes many facets.

  1. Conviction of sin
  2. Understanding of scripture
  3. Quickening
  4. Regeneration
  5. Unction
  6. Anointing
  7. Sealing
  8. Sanctification

In addition to all of these the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts. We abhor even the thought of sin. It becomes unthinkable. There is joy unspeakable. There is power to witness. This is that “unction” to tell others, to testify, for “we are not ashamed of the gospel of Christ.” Remember the woman at the well who after speaking with the LORD, left her pot, went into the city and told everyone about her “experience” with Christ. When we become Christians we understand who Christ is and why He came to this earth. We know His purpose. We have assurance of our salvation. The Spirit of God within us bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God. Our strength comes from God who made the mountains and the seas. There is no need to go on “searching” because we have found Christ. We know the reason for our hope. The Spirit teaches us “all things”.

Others see the fruit of our rebirth. The actions of God are evident. There are many ways God brings us to himself just like there are fingerprints or snowflakes. We are His workmanship. Each individual has his or her own unique experience. But we all “know” Him for it is God who saves us from our sin.

God’s Balance Monday, Dec 26 2016 

God’s Balance

Psalm 103: 14 for he knows how we are formed,
    he remembers that we are dust.

It is a wise man who learns that the foundation of life is love. Without knowledge; there can be no joy. Our faith yields a bountiful crop of peace. Healing comes through patience. The most miraculous power on earth is kindness. Prophecy is the cornerstone of goodness. Faithfulness brings the gift of distinguishing of spirits. Speaking in tongues is the epitome of gentleness and their interpretations are brought through self-control.

Psalm 103: 19 The Lord has established his throne in heaven,
    and his kingdom rules over all.

For every fruit of the Spirit there is a gift. God is the ruler of them all. He distributes them as he wills.

You have heard of the “balance of nature” and how delicate it is on earth. With God, that balance expands to the bounds of heaven.

Isaiah 40:The grass withers and the flowers fall,
    but the word of our God endures forever.”

Isaiah 40: 11 He tends his flock like a shepherd:
He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
he gently leads those that have young.

12 Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand,
or with the breadth of his hand marked off the heavens?
Who has held the dust of the earth in a basket,
or weighed the mountains on the scales
and the hills in a balance?
13 Who can fathom the Spirit[d] of the Lord,
or instruct the
Lord as his counselor?
14 Whom did the Lord consult to enlighten him,
and who taught him the right way?
Who was it that taught him knowledge,
or showed him the path of understanding?

If you are always thinking you need to put your own finger on the scale then you’ll never receive God’s best for you.

Christ’s Gentleness Monday, Jun 2 2014 

2 Corinthians 10:1-3 By the humility and gentleness of Christ, I appeal to you—I, Paul, who am “timid” when face to face with you, but “bold” toward you when away! I beg you that when I come I may not have to be as bold as I expect to be toward some people who think that we live by the standards of this world. For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.

I would like for you to know and be at peace with the gentleness of Christ.

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

This gentleness comes to you through Christ in you.

Philippians 4:Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.

This gentleness becomes a part of who you are in Christ Jesus our LORD.

Galatians 3:

11 Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

This is a gentleness that you wear as a garment. It is what people see when they look at you. It is a part of your mannerisms.

1 Timothy 6:

10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

Final Charge to Timothy

11 But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

1 Peter 3:14 But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear their threats[a]; do not be frightened.”[b] 15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.

Your answer should be gentle. Do not be accusatory. For this leads to strife. But instead let the gentleness of Christ rule in your hearts to bring unity to the brethren. We are all His. His handiwork. His tools. His fellow workers having given ourselves for His service.

Say things in such a way that your whole purpose in communicating is unity.

Show others the Christ in you not only by what you say but by the way that you say it. Honor Him through allowing the gentleness of the Holy Spirit that is in you to show itself to others. It is the same gentleness you feel when the Holy Spirit comes upon you that you should exude. Do not stifle it.