Monday, August 29, 2011

Eternal Life


Titus 1:2-3 (NIV)

Paul's apostleship was for the purposes of evangelism and discipleship.

Apostle Paul was to bring faith to those chosen of God.

He was also to educate them in the knowledge of the truth that is according to godliness.

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Now, Paul continues his thoughts regarding faith and truth...

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1:2 In The Hope Of Eternal Life

Faith and truth are in the hope of eternal life.

In other words, eternal life is dependent upon having faith and walking in the truth.

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Those who don't have faith have no hope of eternal life.

Without faith, it is impossible to please God.

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In addition to faith, living in obedience to the truth according to godliness is also intricately tied to the hope of eternal life.

We have faith, but we must also walk in it, and live a life marked by it.

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What we need is an active faith, not passive.

Inactive faith isn't faith at all.

We must grab hold of eternal life by living a faithful life.

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If we have faith and walk in the truth of godliness, we can expect eternal life.

If we do not obey the truth, we don't have the hope of eternal life.

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We might be saved, but we have no real full assurance from the Scripture which reassures us that when we are not obeying the truth, we shouldn't expect anything but wrath and indignation.

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We are to build ourselves up on our most holy faith while waiting for eternal life.

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1:2 Promised Before The Beginning Of Time

Apostle Paul said that God promised eternal life long ages ago.

It wasn't just early in man's history that God promised eternal life.

God promised it before the beginning of time - before the creation even happened.

God chose us before the foundation of the world (Eph. 1:4).

To Him, our salvation was a deal done before the world was even created.

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1: 3 At His Appointed Season He Has Brought To Light

Eternal life was promised in eternity past.

But at the proper time it was brought to light.

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The Lord Jesus Christ has always existed.

But the world didn't see Him until He appeared to them.

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The Lord Jesus Christ is eternal, and He came to the world at the proper time.

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The Lord Jesus Christ came to us, then died for us, granting to us the promise of eternal life.

The death of the Lord Jesus Christ was at just the right time.

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1:3 Through The Preaching Entrusted To Me By The Command Of God Our Savior

Paul knew that he was one of the people entrusted with the task of preaching that message to people.

He'd been commanded by "God our Savior," that is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Last Days


2 Timothy 3:1-15 (NIV)

3:1 In The Last Days

The term "the last days" refers to the days since the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The church has always lived in the last days.

But we are approaching the culmination, the finale of them.

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As the last days progress, difficult times for the righteous will come.

Mankind is going to become increasingly more evil.

As the human race continues to reject God and pursue its own wickedness, life will become more and more perilous for those who desire to live righteously.

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It will not be enough for the unrighteous to practice their wickedness, but they will attempt to force the righteous to accept their practices, to embrace their evil.

And when they do not, they will become violently opposed to them.

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3:2-4 Attributes Of People In The Last Days

Paul listed many things that we can expect near the end of this age.

It is like what we see in our society today.

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We have seen an incredible increase in the love of money.

Children are more disobedient to their parents.

There are more and more haters of the good.

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3:5 Form Without Power

Meanwhile, the church itself has embraced wickedness and evildoers.

The church is embracing a form of godliness, but denying its power.

They have the practices, but have no relationship with God.

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Paul said "Have nothing to do with such people."

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3:6-7 Those Who Enter And Gain Control

The false teachers now have the ability to enter into households.

They come in through the television set.

The poor people are held captive by the eloquent, well-dressed teachers.

But they are teachers of heresy!

The poor people will never come to a knowledge of the truth.

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3:8-9 Men Who Oppose The Truth

Jannes and Jambres were the magicians that opposed Moses in Exodus 7.

They were religious men, and proved their power by duplicating the miracles that Moses brought.

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In the last days, false teachers will also demonstrate their power with signs and wonders.

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Don't be deceived by miracles.

Listen to the messengers' message instead.

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3:10-12 Persecution For The Righteous

Instead of being like the people of the last days, we should be living as the apostle Paul did - teaching the same gospel, having the same faith, and living the same righteous life.

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But be warned, if we live a godly life, we will suffer persecution for it in these last days.

Are we willing to go against the flow of a wicked world in exchange for eternal life?

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3:13-15 Salvation Through Faith

Christianity for most people is not the Christianity of the Bible.

It is not about the TV evangelists, or the preachers that beg for money.

It's about the fact that every human being is a sinner, separated from God.

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But the good news of Christianity is that God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).

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If we by faith will receive the free gift of God, we will be saved.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Continue In The Faith


2 Timothy 1:1-12

Paul wrote again to young Pastor Timothy.

This time, he encouraged Timothy to continue in the faith, as he himself had done for so many years.

This was Paul's last letter before his death.

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1:1-2 The Will Of God

Paul knew that he was an apostle by the will of God.

How can we know the will of God for our life?

If we want to be in God's will, we must walk close to the Lord.

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1:3-5 Serve God With A Clear Conscience

Paul said he served God with a clear conscience.

If we listen to and act on the Word of God, if we conduct ourselves honorably, we will have a clear conscience.

We will be able to respond correctly with our sense of right and wrong.

If our actions are not in accordance with our beliefs, our conscience gets corrupted.

It is time that we all maintain a good conscience before God.

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1:6-7 Fan Into Flame The Gift Of God

When Paul laid hands on Timothy, a spiritual gift was imparted to Timothy.

It was thought that this gift was the gift of teaching.

But Timothy was shy and non-confrontational.

It was against his natural leanings to teach the Word in a powerful, loving, and disciplinary way.

Paul told Timothy to fan into flame the gift of the Spirit.

It is important that we continue to do things in the power of God's Spirit, rather than in the power of our flesh.

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1:8-12 Saved According To The Grace Of God

God has called us to become his children, not because of anything we have done, but because of His own purpose and grace.

There is no way we can ever live a good enough life to get to heaven, for we all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

The Lord Jesus Christ died to pay our death penalty.

He offers to us eternal life.

That's grace.

Today, or right now, the Lord Jesus Christ is calling us to be saved from the death penalty of our sin.

Will we accept His free gift by surrendering our life to Him, and asking Him into our heart?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

True Godliness


1 Timothy 3:14-16(NIV)

Paul told Timothy that he was writing these things so that people would know how to conduct themselves in church.

What things?
  • Teachers should not teach strange doctrines.
  • Christians should obey and pray for the ruling authorities.
  • Women should be modest, and not be spiritual authorities over men.
  • Men should be godly in their character and behavior.
This is how we are to conduct ourselves in the church.

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Why is the church called God's household?

God's house is each of us that have been born again!

We are the household of God.

When we gather together in His name, the building becomes the house of God as well.

The term "God's household" is used to describe both the building and the believers.

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The household of God is the church.

What is the church for?

Why does it exist?

The church is supposed to be the pillar and foundation of the truth.

The church is supposed to cause the truth to be believed, received, and obeyed.

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If we abide in God's Word, our words and deeds will become one, and the truth will be powerfully proclaimed.

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Paul said the mystery from which true godliness sprang was great.

Firstly, the Lord Jesus Christ had appeared in the flesh; God Himself had become a man.

The Lord Jesus Christ was vindicated in the Spirit. The Holy Spirit proved the righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Lord Jesus Christ was seen by angels. This happened all throughout His life on earth.

The Lord Jesus Christ was preached among the nations.

The Lord Jesus Christ was believed on in the world. Those who believe in Christ will live for eternity. Those who do not will die in their sins.

The Lord Jesus Christ was taken up in glory.

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The Lord Jesus Christ lived on this earth for about 33.5 years, until those who hated Him put him to death by nailing Him to a cross.

He died and was buried for 3 days.

But He rose from the dead.

After He rose from the dead, He appeared over the course of 40 days to over 500 people.

Finally, He was taken up in glory.

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But that's not the end of the story.

A day is coming soon that the Lord Jesus Christ will return to this earth.

In that day, the world will be judged for rejecting Him.

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You have heard the history.

It is the truth.

God came to earth to reach out to you, because you couldn't reach Him.

He died to take away the death penalty for your sins.

He's asking you to believe in Him, so that He can give you eternal life.

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Will you come?

The mystery from which true godliness springs is great.


Friday, August 5, 2011

Abundant Grace To Sinners


1 Timothy 1:8-17

Paul explained to Timothy that the Law is good if we use it lawfully.

We are to use the law to demonstrate the sinfulness of sinners.

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The Law is an effective witnessing tool.

It shows us our sinfulness.

It reveals the darkness in our hearts.

It demonstrates how short of perfection we fall.

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Until we realize that we are lost, we will have no desire to be found.

Until we find that we are guilty, we will have no desire to be pardoned.

Until we see our sins, we will have no need for a Savior.

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The Law is not made for a righteous man.

The Law is made for the lawless and rebellious.

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Paul tells Timothy that allowing, encouraging, or excusing sins are contrary to sound teaching.

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Paul thanks God for His abundant grace.

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At the time God saved Paul, he was in horrendous sin.

He was then known as Saul, and was an enemy of God and God's people.

He was a murderer and a persecutor of Christians.

But God called him to salvation.

And God called him to minister the gospel.

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Paul is a great example of God's abundant grace to sinners.

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Paul said that he is the worst of sinners.

But the Lord God still has mercy on him.

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Some of us are not as bad as Paul.

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God the Father had sent His Son to take the punishment for our sin.

The Lord Jesus Christ had died on the cross so that we could live.

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Can we see the sinfulness of our sins?

Can we understand why the Lord Jesus Christ has to die on the cross?

Look at Paul.

And see God's abundant grace to sinners.