John 10:9 ‘I am the Door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.’
We usually think of a door as a means of entering or exiting a building, automobile, room etc. . We less often think of a door as a means of preventing entry or exit, even though that can be an equally important usage or function. In this verse Jesus is emphasizing the access to eternal life that He is able to provide to all who seek Him as Saviour. Conversely, we can assume that Jesus is also saying that anyone who does not receive Him as the only Door will not be able to ‘enter in.’ Notice that He does not say I am a door, but I am the Door.
In previous verses, Jesus makes it clear that all who offered an alternate way to heaven and salvation were ‘thieves and robbers’. Jesus offers an open door to all who will come by the way of the cross, but He will close the door to Paradise for all who reject Him and seek another way of entry. The end result of not accepting Jesus’ invitation to enter through the only door to eternal life is to choose an eternity separated from God and destined for eternal punishment. And just as those who, choose to enter eternal joy through the Door Christ Jesus, will spend forever in His presence, those who choose some other door will spend eternity with no hope of redemption. Have you chosen God`s Door of mercy? It’s the most important decision you will ever make.
John 8:12 Then Jesus spoke again to them saying, I AM the Light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of life.’
Since the early Biblical times, light and darkness have been associated with good and evil. And we often use the expression ‘see the light’ to describe a person who has realized the error of their ways, and taken corrective action to get back on track. Even before Jesus referred to Himself as the ‘Light of the world’, there were references to Him bringing light out of darkness. In Isaiah 9:2 it was prophesied that the people who walked in darkness would see a ‘great light’, a direct reference to the coming of Christ, and the revelation of truth He would bring. When Jesus was dedicated in the Temple, Simeon stated that ‘He would bring light to the Gentiles’ (Luke 2:32).
Until a person finds new life through a relationship with God, he/she is often referred to as walking in darkness. When Jesus refers to Himself as the ‘Light of the world’, he is saying that only He has the light which all peoples need in order to be rescued from the darkness of sin. Just as there can be no life without light in the natural world, there can be no true spiritual life without the light that is only available from God through Jesus Christ. Again, as is the natural world, light and darkness cannot coexist or be present together. Light always dispels or overcomes darkness. And where there is the true Light of life, the darkness of sin cannot prevail. As Jesus told His disciples in Matthew 5:14, ‘you are the light of the world’, we too are to be lights in a dark world. However, we can only be lights if we are reflectors of God’s light, and rely on the indwelling Holy Spirit to shine through us.
Revelation 1:8 ‘I AM Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, said the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.’
In this verse Jesus is saying ‘I am from eternity to eternity, or I was here at the beginning, and I will be here forever.’ This verse also points to the omnipotence of Christ, and the fact that He was not only present at the beginning, but He was directly responsible for the creation of all things. John 1:3 says ‘All things were made by Him: and without Him was not anything made that was made.’ Not only is the power and wisdom of Christ seen in the creation of the physical universe, but He is also the Creator and Sustainer of all forms of life. While we mortals tend to look at things from within a limited time frame or life span, God views things from the perspective of immortality or eternity.
As Hebrews 12:2 states, ‘Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our faith’. He, with His Father, not only designed the plan of salvation, but became the instrument through which the plan was implemented. When a person’s life is transformed by a personal relationship with God, he/she receives the gift of eternal life and has the assurance that when this earthly life is finished, a new life is just beginning. At that point, we have the assurance given in 1 Corinthians 15:53 that ‘this mortal puts on immortality.’ We are then restored to the perfect creatures that God originally intended us to be, and can look forward to an eternity in His presence.
Exodus 3:14 ‘And God said to Moses, I AM WHO I AM: and He said, This shall you say unto the children of Israel, I AM has sent me to you.’
This is the first verse in the Bible where God refers to Himself as ‘I AM’. Over the next week we will also look at the seven ‘I AMs’ of the New Testament. In the New Testament it was Jesus who referred to Himself as ‘I AM’, which is further confirmation that Jesus is God, and that He and the Father are One. Both God the Father and Jesus referred to themselves as ‘I AM’ because of their eternal nature. Whereas we live in time, God lives in eternity where there is no past or future, but it is always the present. God is never ‘I WAS’ or ‘I SHALL BE’, but is always ‘I AM.’
The name I AM signifies that God is eternal and unchangeable, the same yesterday, today and forever. It also has meaning which is beyond the capacity of the human mind to understand. In Isaiah 55:9 we are told ‘For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.’ Although we can never fathom the thoughts or ways of God, He has chosen to reveal Himself and His nature through the Bible and His Son Jesus Christ. In Romans Paul tells us that God even reveals Himself through nature and His magnificent creation of the universe. But probably even more importantly, the Great I AM is a God of infinite love, mercy and compassion, Who is always ready to welcome back home the prodigal, and forgive the sinner who sincerely seeks Him. His desire is that every person enter into a personal relationship with Him, and ‘taste and see that the Lord is good.’ (Psalm 34:8)
Hebrews 11:1 ‘Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.’
In our everyday living we rely on faith to a much greater extent than we realize. Whether it’s the trust we have in a banking institution to safely protect and handle our money, or faith in a person responsible for care of a child, we exercise faith in numerous ways in the course of a day. But faith by it’s very definition implies absence of proof. While in most cases we may have good reason to have faith, where human actions and decisions are involved, there is always the possibility of misplaced faith or trust. However, when we are placing our faith in God, it’s a completely different situation. We are not dealing with mere humanity, but with an infallible and unchanging God who is ever faithful to His promises. Throughout the Bible, and particularly in Hebrews chapter 11, we see numerous examples of miraculous accomplishments by ordinary men and women through the exercise of their faith in God. In any aspect of the Christian life it’s not a matter of having great faith in God, but of having faith in a great God. With respect to salvation, God supplies adequate faith for all to be saved, but leaves it to each person to exercise his or her saving faith. In John 6:37 Jesus assures us that He will not ‘cast out’ any who come to Him. Will you consider coming to Him in faith today?
Ephesians 2:8,9 ‘For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works lest anyone should boast.’
What is the grace of God? It is the unmerited or undeserved favor of God toward sinful man. As the verse says, we are saved by grace through faith – not of works. If it was by doing good works there would be no need of grace, and no necessity for Jesus to go to the cross as payment for our sin. Also, it would be impossible to determine just how many or how much good works would be required to qualify a person for salvation. Sadly, the concept of grace is one which many people cannot accept – they want to somehow earn or deserve the right to be saved or go to heaven. Their intellect or pride won’t allow them to even consider receiving eternal life without it being on the basis of merit or accomplishment. Although they may not fully understand it, God has made it simple enough that even a child’s faith is sufficient to result in salvation. Most people consider themselves as basically ‘good’, or certainly not bad when compared to the worst of society. However, God’s plan of salvation excludes the idea of being ‘good enough’ or deserving it on any such basis. It is not based on what we can do or are, but only on the basis of what Christ did for us on the cross of Calvary. Our sin debt has been ‘paid in full’, and all that’s required is to accept the ‘gift of God.’ The only conditions attached are that we acknowledge our sinful condition and need of forgiveness, believe that Jesus died as payment for our sins, and by grace receive God’s gift of salvation. Could there be a more gracious offer or plan than this? Comments welcome..Please scroll down
John 14:26 ‘But the Comforter which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatever I have said unto you.’
The Holy Spirit (or Holy Ghost) is the third person of the Trinity. The Holy Spirit, being God, has attributes in common with other members of the Trinity, as well as attributes or characteristics that are unique. As God, the Holy Spirit is all-powerful, all-knowing and present everywhere. As a person, and not a force or impersonal being, the Holy Spirit can teach, be grieved, has a will, speaks, is loving and intercedes on behalf of the children of God. In today’s verse Jesus assures the disciples that, after He has ascended into heaven, the Father would send the Holy Spirit, whose role it would be to reveal Jesus to Christians and teach them the things He (Jesus) had made known during His earthly ministry. It is the Holy Spirit who convicts people of their sin, and draws them unto God that they may receive Jesus as their Saviour. The Holy Spirit indwells all true believers, as confirmed in 2 Corinthians 3:16 – ‘Don’t you know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?’ Through this indwelling, Christians are guided and led by the Holy Spirit, and enabled to live a life that is pleasing and acceptable to God. In the last days, before the second coming of Christ, the Holy Spirit will be withdrawn from the earth, as the spirit of evil assumes greater and greater influence over the thoughts and actions of people and nations. Although it is unknown just when this will happen, current events point to the soon return of our Lord. Are you ready should the Lord return today?
John 1:1 ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.’
Jesus is the ‘only begotten’ Son of the Father and the second Person of the Trinity. Although some Christian cults fail to acknowledge that Jesus is deity or truly God, the above verse is one of many throughout the Bible that clearly affirms His divine character or nature. Jesus is the Messiah who was prophesied in the Old Testament and whose birth fulfilled over four hundred prophecies, some dating back to the Book of Genesis and the creation of mankind. Jesus became God Incarnate (God with us or Immanuel) for the express purpose of being the Saviour who would die on the cross as the substitutionary payment for our sin. This could only happen because He lived a sinless life and was therefore a worthy ‘sacrificial Lamb.’ Although Jesus became a man, He existed before His humanity, and was with His Father was instrumental in creation of the world. Because Jesus was willing to come to earth and make a way for sinful man to be reconciled to God, there is now hope for all who will humble themselves and accept Him as their Saviour. Jesus did not become one of many ways to eternal life, but clearly stated in John 14:6 that ‘I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, and no man comes to the Father except through Me.’ The apostle Paul confirmed this in Acts 4:12 which says ‘Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name (than Jesus) under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved.’ Each person has to decide who Jesus Christ is or what He means to him or her. There are several possibilities, but the wisest choice is to acknowledge His divinity and invite Him to become both Saviour and Lord of one’s life. He awaits your decision today.
1 John 3:1 ‘Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God’
It is only natural that people have a tendency to see things from a humanly rather than a spiritual perspective. This not only applies to things we experience physically or intellectually on a daily basis but at the supernatural level as well. So we often think of God’s love for us as being similar to our love for our children, often subject to our feelings or circumstances. However, the love of God is so superior to our love that it is beyond our understanding or comprehension. How many of us would send our only child into a sinful world, to die the cruelest of deaths on an ‘old rugged cross’, as payment for the sins of others? Only a God of ultimate love and compassion could even consider such a costly rescue plan for the salvation of a lost world. Our concept of God as a Father may be coloured by experiences we’ve had with our earthly father, which is why it is important to consider the love and other attributes of our Father God. God’s love is absolutely unconditional and unchanging regardless of how we feel about Him – or even if we ignore Him. While the ‘rain falls on the just and the unjust’, God has a special love and care for His children. We can never avail of the benefits and blessings of our Father God unless we accept His free offer to become His child, and receive His gift of salvation. While earthly fathers often fail to meet the needs, and will even at times, abandon their children, our Heavenly Fathers always delights in providing what is best for His own. Regardless of our experience with our earthly Father, there is a gracious and loving Heavenly Father who patiently waits to receive all who will seek Him and receive the untold blessings He has in store for them. And He is never further than a prayer away
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