apostle Paul wrote that: “Christ liveth in me” (Gal 2:20). Christ lives in us
as well (Rom 8:10), and we are in him (Rom 8:1). Jesus is the vine and we are
branches of that vine (John 15:5). We have been grafted in to the vine. Spiritually
this means that we are in Christ. As the life of the vine flows out to its
branches, so the life of Jesus, the Holy Spirit, lives in us and flows from us.
the book of Colossians, we are told that our heavenly Father has: “delivered us
from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear
son” (Col 1:13; KJV). This is God’s spiritual kingdom of light; we are
connected to Jesus and live in his sphere of influence.
was defeated through Christ’s victory at the cross and he (satan) was stripped
of all power and authority in our lives as Christians (Col 2:15).
Christ, God sees us as righteous (1 Cor 1:30), his sons and daughters (Gal
3:26), and: “more than conquerors” (Rom 8:37; KJV). “I can do all things
through Christ who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13; KJV).
is who we are but we need to walk in it. This requires that we study the word
and find out who we are in Christ; build up our faith so we can stand up to
satan when he comes to question our new life in Christ. Satan is defeated but
he will try to question your relationship with God using people and by sending
you negative thoughts. You must be convinced of who you are so you can stand
firm in your victory in Jesus.
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In Matthew 10:25 (KJV), Jesus told his disciples that:
"it is enough for the disciple to be as his master". And who is the master?
Jesus, of course, so that is our aim, to be like him.
The apostle Paul said in Gal 4:19 (KJV): "I travail
in birth again until Christ be formed in you". The Greek word for
"formed" means an inward change or transformation to take on the
nature and character of Christ. Paul also admonished the Corinthian Christians (1
Cor 11:1; KJV), to: "Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of
Christ". In 1 John 4:17 we are told that we are to walk in the world
around us just as Jesus would have done. In addition, in Ephesians 5:1, we are
simply taught to follow and imitate God.
The question is how do we do this? We get a clue in 2
Cor 3:18 (KJV). “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory
of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by
the Spirit of the Lord”. The glass or mirror is the word of God. The Holy Spirit
uncovers the word to us (John 16:13) bringing revelation or understanding. As
we see and understand the character and nature of Jesus, the Holy Spirit can
work in us to change us to be more like (him) Jesus. As we see by faith how God
wants to change us and all he wants us to be and do, then that allows the Holy
Spirit to bring these things to pass in our lives. We may not be aware of it but our light will
shine more brightly (Prov 4:18) the more time we spend in God’s presence. We
grow to imitate the teacher.
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new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you,
that ye also love one another” (John 13:34; KJV). It doesn’t get any stronger
than that; we are commanded to love one another and not only love but to love
as Christ loves us. The apostle James taught us that: “If ye really fulfill the
royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself,
ye do well” (James 2:8; KJV). Loving our neighbor is a royal law, a cardinal
command. This love of God is an unconditional love.
we received the love nature of God when we were born again (Rom 5:5) walking in
unconditional love does not come naturally to us. This means that we must
develop or grow this love nature that we have; we need to be intentional about
love and make decisions to put love into practice. Time spent with God who is
love (1 John 4:8) and reading, studying and meditating on love scriptures will
help us to do that.
after Jesus gave the command to love, in the gospel according to the apostle
John, he also said that it was in this love for our neighbor that others would recognize
us as Christians (John 13:34-35).
we put love into practice then we will draw others to Christ. If the church
universal started truly acting in love there would be a mighty revival. Love is
a powerful force and in 1 Corinthians 13:2 we are told that without it we are
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book of Proverbs has a lot to teach us about our words, their power, and how
God will give us the words to say to bring life. “Death and life are in the
power of the tongue” (Prov 18:21; KJV). In both Prov. 15:2 and 7, King Solomon
teaches that knowledge comes from the tongue of a wise person. Then in Proverbs
16:1 we read that the wise answer of the tongue comes from God.
we are regularly spending time with God, he will give us his wisdom and we will
be able to share that with others. Then
there is this beautiful verse from Proverbs 25:11 (KJV): "A word fitly
spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver". Finally, from
Proverbs: "a word spoken in due season, how good is it" (Prov 15:23).
you are still not convinced here's one more scripture: "The Lord God hath
given me the tongue of the learned that I should know how to speak a word in
season to him that is weary” (Isa 50:4; KJV). Here's the key, if we have a
teachable spirit God himself will teach us how to speak those words of wisdom
does this all apply to us as Christians? In Ephesians 4:29 we are exhorted to
use our words of wisdom to edify, build up, be a blessing to and encourage
others in their walk with God.
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is good for us to spend time in the Old testament of the bible and be reminded
that God has zero tolerance for sin. This is portrayed graphically in his
dealings with Israel and Judah, he allowed them to be taken into exile because
of their rebellion and sin (2 Kings). We are also exhorted to hate evil (Ps
the new Testament we are told that sin causes spiritual death (Rom 6:23), all
people sin (Rom 3:23) and that sin separates us from God. Jesus paid the price
for our sins by his sacrificial death (1 Peter 3:18) and won justification for
us (Rom 3:24). This simply mean that if we repent, ask his forgiveness and ask him
into our life as Lord and Saviour we are forgiven and made just as if we had
never sinned. Our sins were washed away by his blood (Rev 1:5), the price was
paid and God sees us as righteous in Christ Jesus (2 Cor 5:21). To be righteous
is to be in right standing with God.
this mean God has gone soft on sin? Absolutely not (1 John 1:5). We are told as
Christians that we should not go on willfully sinning (1 John 3:6-9). However,
we are still flesh and blood and we will sin (1 John 1:8), but if we repent and
ask God’s forgiveness, he is quick to forgive (1 John 1:9). To repent is to
simply turn from our sins and do what’s right.
next question is, as Christians, are we soft on Sin? Do we have things in our
lives that we wink at or ignore? Well, you know, God knows I get it mostly
right but a few minor issues I am sure He can tolerate? God is still black and
white on sin and he tells us to take of the old man and put on the new (Eph
4:22-24). That’s all of the old man and all of the new. Let’s not limit God in
our lives by ignoring sin. Now don’t get condemned, God knows our hearts (Ps
44:21) and as we desire to be everything he wants us to be, he will provide
grace to help us to change (Eph 1:7-9). The apostle Paul never claimed to be
perfect (Phil 3:12) and God does not expect us to change overnight. Keep on
keeping on, the blessings are amazing.
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