Tuesday, November 24, 2020

HOLY LIKE THE MESSIAH JESUS

“It is written, ‘You shall be holy, for I am holy’” (1 Peter 1:16, ESV). There are two elements of Jesus’ life that are meant to be part of our lives too. That is, we are to be holy and anointed. Some Christians might be intimidated when they hear this. “Sure, I live a moral life and I do my best to be godly; but holy? And anointed? How could that happen with all my failures?”

But there it is, straight from Peter’s pen. The only way this could happen is if Jesus gave us his own holiness and anointing, and that’s exactly what he did, through his perfect sin-offering sacrifice for us. The Messiah Jesus lived a spotless life on earth, and through his perfect life on earth, his payment for our sins is thorough and endless.

The Messiah’s work for us; his crucifixion, death, and resurrection; did more than cleanse us of sin. Through it, he also imparted to us his righteousness by his indwelling presence in us. Think about what an amazing thing this is: While all our sin is on him, all his righteousness is on us.

One of the faults that God cleanses us from is our deep belief that our behavior makes us righteous. We can never earn our way to a higher level of righteousness; we’re made righteous by him alone. That’s where our victory lies. As Paul testifies, “I can no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in the Messiah. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith and belief in the one whom He has sent”

Philippians 3:7-15: But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for the Messiah. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the Excellency of the knowledge of the Messiah Jesus my lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win the Messiah, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of the Messiah, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; if by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of the Messiah Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in the Messiah Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, have this mind:

You may feel holy only on days when you’re doing well, worshipful and conscious of God in every way. But don’t mistake that for a state of holiness. You can never be holier than Jesus’ blood makes you. So, by his power, we are his worthy witnesses not just in good times but in bad times as well.

Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father” (John 14:12, ESV).

The key to our belief is that he is at work already. Accept his holiness, no matter what you think of yourself, and receive his anointing to fulfill the works he has prepared for you. He’ll open every door and you’ll see him perform unexpected wonders!

Monday, November 23, 2020

HOW SHOULD WE LIVE FOR OUR GOD AND FATHER YEHOVAH?

The way to live for our God and Father Yehovah is to obey the words He gave to the lord Messiah Jesus to give to us! That is what we are to do, in order to live for Yehovah.

IF we believe in the one whom Yehovah sent, and repent, and are baptized [totally immersed] in the water; showing that we are dying to self and coming up out of the water, as new creations in the Messiah, filled with his spirit to enable us to walk in covenant obedience to the words His God and Father gave to him to give to us.

Now what words are the most important for us to do?

Well the simplicity of the Messiah Jesus is to obey his creed, as given in Mark 12:28-34. We are to love Yehovah Elohim - God with all our being and to love our neighbor as ourselves; which we can only do as enabled by His indwelling Spirit.

Along with this we are to behave as those who have been grafted into the true Israel [Romans 11] and are to be witnesses - reflections as those who have been born in the image of Yehovah, both physically and spiritually, reflecting His nature. We can do this In the same way that the Messiah Jesus did as the outshining of the nature of His God and Father. We can do this as sons of God, who have been placed into the household of Yehovah.

This is how we live for our God and Father Yehovah, doing as the Messiah Jesus did, being witnesses about the coming kingdom of God; which will begin when Yehovah sends His son down to take his place on the throne of David at Zion. Then we who have been resurrected at his return will join with him as immortal sons and daughters; as co-rulers and co-inheritors with him, who is our elder brother, who showed us the way, the truth and the life and light of his God and Father that we should emulate to all the people we come in contact with!

IF we are filled with the indwelling power of Yehovah's Spirit and the Spirit of the Messiah Jesus we will reflect the glory of God and His uniquely begotten son Jesus by obeying the words and commands that Yehovah gave Jesus to give for us to do! That is how we live in covenant faithfulness to our God and Father Yehovah.

Friday, November 20, 2020

HAVING A FAITH THAT TESTIFIES

This message is for every Christian who is on the brink of exhaustion, overwhelmed by your present situation. You have been a faithful servant, feeding others, confident that God can do the impossible for His people. Yet you have lingering doubts about God’s willingness to intervene in your present struggle.

Think of those in the body of the Messiah [the called-out Assembly] whom you have given words of faith and hope, people facing seemingly hopeless situations. You’ve urged them, “Hang on! God is a miracle worker, and His promises are true. Don’t lose hope; He is going to answer your cry.”

Jesus made a statement to believers in every generation: “I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now continued with me three days and have nothing to eat. And I do not want to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way” (Matthew 15:32). Yehovah is telling us through His son who was the outshining of His glory: “I will do more for my people than heal them. I’m going to make sure they have enough bread to eat. I am concerned about everything concerning their lives.”

We all believe God can do amazing things for us. We believe in every miracle we have read in Scripture. Yet, that is not enough. God’s question to all his people right now is: “Do you believe I can work a powerfully in you and through you?” Not just one miracle, but a miracle for every crisis, every situation we face.

Our faith in troubled times obtains for us the testimony of “a good report.” “For by [their faith] the elders obtained a good report” (Hebrews 11:2). The Greek word for “obtained” here means “to bear witness, to become a testimony.”

Our ancestors in Yehovah had a settled, anchored faith. And their unwavering faith became a testimony to the world of God’s faithfulness in the midst of troubled times.

As you rest in Yehovah through storms, holding your faith position, you are obtaining a “good report.” And you are serving as a beacon of hope to those around you. Those who watch your life; at home, at work, on your block; are learning that hope is available to them.

Our God and Father has supplied us with everything needed to sustain our faith, even as calamities increase. We have been given the witness of the His Spirit, that abides in us, and God’s fully revealed word in the Scriptures. These will sustain us, obtaining for us the testimony of a good report even as the world shakes. Hold fast! Live a life of victory, enabled by the indwelling power of the Spirit of Yehovah and His son in you.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

WHAT IS SIN?

The biblical Greek word for sin is “harmartia” and means “missing the mark” Specifically it is missing the mark of our God-given human vocation to demonstrate God’s own image (Genesis 1:26) i.e. to reflect God’s personality and character – istics. Indeed, it is a missing the mark, of what we as humans were supposed to reflect.

Further Greek words related to sin are: “adakia” which means covenant unfaith-fulness, unrighteousness. “poneria” as evil of a vicious or degenerate kind; “parabasis” as trespass or transgression; and finally “anomia” as lawlessness.

The root of sin is idolatry, that is, the worship of what is not God so that the person becomes completely self-centered rather that God-centered. It concerns breaking faith with God and has the basic elements of: faithlessness, lack of trust, disobedience, pride, covetousness, rivalry, and discontent. Such sinfulness, unfaithfulness, evil transgression, and lawlessness leads to violence that starting with Cain murdering Abel; to the violence we see being enacted all over the world today!

The solution to all this sinful activity has been plainly set before us in the scriptures and it is very plain and simple. Repent, turn away from being self-centered and become God-centered. Believe in the one whom he has sent, Jesus the Messiah, who became a sin-offering sacrifice for all of humanity in order to bring all people to his God and Father Yehovah. He call on us to repent and be baptized [totally immersed] in water and in doing so die to self and rise up as a new creation in the lord Messiah Jesus, receiving the Holy Spirit which enables one to live a life dedicated to keeping the creed of the Messiah: which is loving God with all our being and loving our neighbors as ourselves [Mark 12:28-34].

If all those who come to him will do this, then at the end of this age they will enter into a co-ruling and co-inheriting relationship with the Messiah and will receive with him, all that he will receive, when he comes to take his place on the throne of David and rule for 1,000 years establishing a Theocratic government to rule over the nations.

We can join him in this beautiful endeavor if we will follow the guidelines plainly give to us in the scriptures, realizing that we are helpless human beings that can only do so as we are enabled by the indwelling power of God’s spirit, and the spirit of His son Jesus in us. All of mankind has a choice to choose life in the Messiah Jesus or reject his testimony and choose death and in the end to be destroyed in the lake of fire at the White Throne Judgment at the end of the 1,000 year rule of the Messiah. CHOOSE LIFE!   

DOES YOUR LIFE SHOW FAITH IN THE MESSIAH?

The writer of Hebrews says to his readers, “By this time you ought to be teachers” (Hebrews 5:12).

These are strong, bold words. Who exactly is the writer addressing here? In short, who is he rebuking? The book of Hebrews shows us he is speaking for the most part to Jewish Believers who had attended synagogue every Sabbath and heard the entire O.T. scriptures explained to them every year. They were well-schooled in scriptural truth. In other words, those reading this letter had sat under powerful preaching by many ribbi's.

Consider all that these believers had been taught; not only by the Rabbi's, but by the apostles, and the leading elders in their assemblies:

  • They knew about Jesus’ high priesthood and his intercession for them at God’s throne.
  • They knew of Jesus invitation to come boldly before the throne to find mercy and grace in their time of need.
  • They had been taught that a supernatural rest was available to them.
  • They knew the lord Jesus was touched with the feelings of their infirmities.
  • They knew the Messiah had been tempted in all points as they were, yet he remained without sin.
  • They had been exhorted, “Hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end” (3:6).
  • They had received clear warning of how unbelief grieves God's Spirit: “Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God” (3:12).
All this is found in the first four chapters of Hebrews and now, in chapter 5, the writer addresses those gathered: “After all this sound teaching, you are still dull of hearing and need someone to teach you.”

Does this apply to you? Think of all that has been learned by this present generation of Christians. How many sermons have we heard that challenge us to trust Yehovah in all things? How many times have we heard God’s incredible promises preached? And yet, how often are we quickly deflated when a trial comes?

Beloved brothers and sisters, what is your life saying to those around you? How does your book of life read? Are you a witness in hard times, ministering to others by your example? It is impossible to keep faith without boldly going to the throne of God in prayer for all you need. I urge you to go to Yehovah daily for all the mercy you need. He is calling you forth as one of his witnesses - teachers!

Written by David Wilkerson and edited by Bruce Lyon.