DON’T QUIT NOW

Don't Quit Now

 

1 Corinthians 15:57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

 

           The Resurrection is the loudest voice that speaks, “This is no time to quit or lessen your service to the Lord.” The Resurrection of Jesus is both a fact of history and a spiritual truth. His Resurrection guarantees ours whether it is a physical resurrection from the dead or Rapture of the living 1 Corinthians 15:51-58. The Resurrection is the basis for Paul’s conclusion and commands where He commands three things for all Believers in relationship to the work of the Lord.

 

  1. Be ye steadfast,
  2. Unmovable,
  3. Always abounding in the work of the Lord….”

 

Like those who quit just when they are about to reach the summit of Mount Everest, this is no time to quit as we approach the climax of our race in service to the Lord. Once the Lord Returns:

 

Our earthly opportunities will be gone forever.

Our destinies will be fixed for eternity.

Our works will be manifested and judged.

 

There will no longer be a chance to do things over again.

 

HIS RESURRECTION IS THE LOUDEST VOICE THAT SPEAKS “DON’T QUIT NOW.”

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NO COMPETITION

NO COMPETITION

 

Revelation 1:17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: 18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

 

         Christianity is a relationship with the Living and True God not merely a religion, and the crowning truth of our faith is the Resurrection.  Other religions try to compare and compete with Christianity. They contend and say:

 

“You have a holy book (the Bible), we have a holy book.”

“Jesus had multitudes of people following Him, our founder had multitudes of people following him.”

“You have buildings where people come to worship, we have buildings where people come to worship.”

As Christians we can say, “Yes, all of that may be true, but our Leader was raised from the dead!”

 

End of conversation!

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HE CHALLENGED DEATH AND WON

He Challenged Death and Won

 

John 11:25 Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.

 

Jesus wasn’t a philosopher looking for a following or a creator of a religion begging for a place of popular acceptance among the world’s religions.  He came as Heaven’s Champion and Challenger.

 

No other religion claims its founder arose from the dead or predicted his own resurrection.

 

No man is rich enough to buy his way out of death;

No man is smart enough to outwit death;

No man is strong enough to out muscle death.

The grave always wins.

 

Our Jesus, though, said, “… fear not, I am the first and the last. I am He that liveth and was dead; and behold I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death Revelation 1:17, 18.” He is the One and only to challenge death and beat it.

 

Romans 1:4 says, “And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.” God declared or was making a statement by the resurrection, THIS IS MY SON. The Resurrection is the major proof of who Jesus is and His claims. Without the Resurrection, He would be a good man, a moral man, and a great philosopher but no Savior. The fact He conquered death displayed with power that He is not just another man, but the Son of God and Savior. The Resurrection verified His claim as God’s Son and Christianity’s claim to absolute truth.

 

WILL ALL CONTENDERS PLEASE STEP FORWARD

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THE FOUNDATION OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITH

THE FOUNDATION OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITH

 

The Resurrection of Jesus is the foundation stone of the Christian faith. It is the confession of Jesus as Lord and belief that God raised Him from the dead that brings salvation to our heart (Romans 10:9, 10). It is not A TRUTH of Christianity it is THE TRUTH of Christianity. No other religion challenged death, hell, and the grave and won. With other religions the grave always wins. No other religion can point to the hope of a resurrection.

 

Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross and His shed Blood alone pays the price to redeem mankind from sin and the resurrection alone was proof of God’s acceptance of His sacrifice. As one great preacher said, “Christianity is the only religion in the world with a virgin womb at one end and an empty tomb at the other end.

 

There are so many blessings of the Resurrection because it affects our past, our present, and our future:

  1. Its power can cancel out a life of past sin to save us from the PENALTY OF SIN, justify us, and give us a new beginning.

 

Romans 4:25 Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification. 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

 

  1. Its power and life is available for conquering the present POWER OF SIN, and from our adversary.

 

Romans 5:10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

Romans 6:14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.

Luke 10:19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

 

  1. Its power makes a blessed hope available for the future redemption for our body and our removal from the PRESENCE OF SIN.

 

His Resurrection from the dead was a guarantee and a prelude to the resurrection of His people (Romans 8:11). The Bible calls it our Blessed hope and the glorious appearing of our Lord (Titus 2:13). What a glorious day that will be and because it could happen at any moment, we ought to purify ourselves as He is pure (1 John 3:2, 3) and be zealous about preaching the Gospel.

 

Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

Titus 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. 3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

 

HAVE A BLESSED CELEBRATION OF HIS RESURRECTION

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THE GRACE THAT IS IN CHRIST

THE GRACE THAT IS IN CHRIST

2 Timothy 2:1 Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

 

Grace can be defined in many ways but here in 2 Timothy 2:1, grace is a POSITION called “IN CHRIST.” The whole human race is viewed by God as either being “IN ADAM,” by virtue of natural birth or being “IN CHRIST,” by virtue of spiritual birth. By receiving Jesus as Lord we have been placed in Christ as our position before God and our position in the spirit realm. We can depend on natural strength to empower us or we can depend upon spiritual strength to empower us. Grace is power enabling us to act so Paul encourages Timothy to be strong in it. He encouraged him to rely upon the grace being in Christ imparts to us and empowers us.

 

If you will meditate upon and major on truths that tell you who you are in Christ you will find an empowerment for your life and energy to your faith. The Spirit of God through the Apostle Paul said in Philemon 6, “That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.” Give full recognition to and acknowledge the facts of your position and possessions in Christ and increase your strength. Affirm the facts of who God says you are, what you have, and what you can do in Christ and experience the empowerment that only His grace can give. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so Psalm 107:2

 

  1. NEW CREATION 2 Corinthians 5:17

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

 

  1. RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD 2 Corinthians 5:21

 

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

 

  1. HEIR OF GOD, JOINT HEIR WITH CHRIST Romans 8:17

And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

 

  1. REDEEMED Ephesians 1:7

In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

 

  1. CHILD OF GOD. CHOSEN, PREDESTINED, AND ACCEPTED Ephesians 1:4-6

According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

 

  1. BLESSED Ephesians 1:3

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

 

  1. TRIUMPHANT 2 Corinthians 2:14

Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.

 

  1. VICTORIOUS 1 Corinthians 15:57

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

  1. HEALED 1 Peter 2:24

Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

 

We are exhorted by the Spirit of God in the Book of Hebrews 13:9 to “Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace….” Having our heart established with grace would include having our heart established with who we are and what we have “in Christ,” for there is grace “in Christ.”

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GOD IS NOT OUR PROBLEM, HE IS THE ANSWER

GOD IS NOT OUR PROBLEM, HE IS THE ANSWER

 Life is full of both good a bad things that happen in people’s lives. In the process of reconciling and coming to peace with those events some have made God responsible and the One in control of everything that happens. They call it the Sovereignty of God which basically means God is in control of everything that happens to us on Earth. God is not our problem, He is the answer to our problems so don’t blame God.

 

We can call God Sovereign and define sovereign as the one who is supreme, paramount and above all. A sovereign is the highest ruler, having supreme rank, and authority over all. It is one who is subject to no one higher, takes orders from no one, and answers to no one higher. We can, of course say that is who our God is but that does not mean everything that happens He wills it, allows it, or approves of it.

 

As it is commonly taught today and accepted by so many Believers, it is the distorted belief that

  1. God controls everything that happens to us.
  2. God wills everything, good and bad, that happen to us.
  3. Nothing can happen to us without His approval.
  4. He is sovereign over all events and is the Supreme Dispenser of all events

 

It is easily identified by common phrases used to echo this distorted belief like:

Phrases commonly used that echo this distorted belief:

“If it happened, there must be a reason God had for it.”

“You know God works in mysterious ways; God’s in control”

“God must be trying to teach you something.”

“God is in control and you never know what He’ll do.”

“Whatever will be will be.”

“It must have been their time.”

“Well, God is sovereign,” used as a catch all explanation for something unexplainable or the reason for a tragedy.

 

Yes, God is Sovereign, above all in power, authority, and rank but His Sovereignty will never violate man’s free will and choice (Genesis 3:6; Galatians 6:7); His Word (Psalm 138:2); His character (Numbers 23:19); and His covenant promises and oath (Psalm 89:34). If in the name of “God is Sovereign,” and He changes what He said, promised, or changes His immutable character, how could He ever be trusted?  There would be no basis of trust if He changes or contradicts what He said.

 

The distorted sovereignty overemphasis needs balanced with these facts:

 

  1. God has magnified His Word above His Name and watches over it to perform it (Psalm 138:2).

 

  1. God cannot violate His character, nature, and integrity (Numbers 23:19; Hebrews 4:16-18).

 

  1. Jesus restored man’s dominion, authority, and right to rule in life (Genesis 1:26, 28, 31; Matthew 28:18).

 

  1. God’s throne, His seat of authority, is grace not sovereignty. All redemption was by grace, not sovereignty and grace demands a response of faith on our part (Hebrews 4:16; Romans 4:16).

 

  1. There are many things that are not God’s will that happen to us, and many things that are God’s will that never happen. That is why Jesus said to pray God’s will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven (Matthew 6:10).

 

      6. We live in a Fallen world (Romans 8:20-22); with Fallen men (Ephesians 2:1-3; Genesis 6:5); and have exposure to a Fallen angel and his demonic forces (Isaiah 14:12-14; Luke 10:18; 1 Peter 5:8; Ephesians 6:12). We no longer live on Earth and in a world God initially made “very good,” Genesis 1:31.

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REDEMPTION BY GRACE NOT SOVEREIGNTY

redemption by grace not sovereignty

Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus Romans 3:24.

In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace Ephesians 1:7.

 

Our redemption in Christ is by grace which is available to all by faith, as opposed to God sovereignly choosing who He wants to receive it. Yes, God is sovereign meaning He is supreme, paramount, the highest ruler, and above all. He is subject to no one higher, takes orders from no one, and answers to no one higher. Sovereignty is God doing what He wants, when He wants, how He wants, to whomever He wants completely independent of us but that wasn’t the means He chose to make salvation or redemption accessible to all. The contrast of being redeemed by sovereignty versus grace is this:

 

UNDER SOVEREIGNTY

  1. What God is sovereign over you do not need faith for it.
  2. Sovereignty requires no faith, no choice, no obedience, and no action on man’s part.
  3. It is up to what God decides and chooses.
  4. Man is passive.

 

UNDER GRACE

  1. What God offers in grace must be responded to with faith.
  2. Grace requires faith, a choice, obedience, an action, on man’s part.
  3. It is what God already decided and has chosen.
  4. Man must respond (to receive it).

 

Romans 4:16 says, “Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end (the point aimed at) might be sure (secure) to all the seed; not only to that which is of the law but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all.” Redemption being by grace through faith makes the work of God in Christ a sure thing to all who would believe, no matter what your background, I.Q., race, color, social status, or upbringing. God showed no favorites and made no exceptions. All can receive the work of God through Jesus (the grace of redemption) and He gives us the faith to receive it Ephesians 2:8, 9; Romans 12:3. Yes, it was the sovereign choice of God to redeem us but He chose to do it by grace through faith.

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