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Category Archives: Discipleship

Made Pure Because of Christ

13Therefore prepare your minds for action; discipline yourselves; set all your hope on the grace that Jesus Christ will bring you when he is revealed. 14Like obedient children, do not be conformed to the desires that you formerly had in ignorance. 15Instead, as he who called you is holy, be holy yourselves in all your conduct; 16for it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” 17If you invoke as Father the one who judges all people impartially according to their deeds, live in reverent fear during the time of your exile. 18You know that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your ancestors, not with perishable things like silver or gold, 19but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without defect or blemish. 20He was destined before the foundation of the world, but was revealed at the end of the ages for your sake. 21Through him you have come to trust in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are set on God. (1 Peter 1:13-21, NRSV)

Do not hold to your old ways but be made different by Christ. Do live life as you had looking out for yourself first, but look out for others first and know that by doing this you will show them the love that Christ gave to you and Christ, in turn, will refill your cup.

Because if we are filled with Christ we can not live the old life we had been living for the old has gone away and the new has come. That is what life in Christ does, it changes us to look at the other first.

Are you filled with the spirit and guided by His love to give grace and mercy to all of the world?

Do you live a new life in Christ?

 

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Jesus is the Source of Eternal Life

Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the parent loves the child. 2By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. 3For the love of God is this, that we obey his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome, 4for whatever is born of God conquers the world. And this is the victory that conquers the world, our faith. 5Who is it that conquers the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? 6This is the one who came by water and blood, Jesus Christ, not with the water only but with the water and the blood. And the Spirit is the one that testifies, for the Spirit is the truth. 7There are three that testify: 8the Spirit and the water and the blood, and these three agree. 9If we receive human testimony, the testimony of God is greater; for this is the testimony of God that he has testified to his Son. 10Those who believe in the Son of God have the testimony in their hearts. Those who do not believe in God have made him a liar by not believing in the testimony that God has given concerning his Son. 11And this is the testimony: God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. (1 John 5:1-12, NRSV)

How do we know if we have the Son?

Because verse 12 clearly states that if you have the Son you have life, but if you do not have the Son you do not have life.

So how do you know if you have the Son?

If you keep the commandments?

Which ones?

And we all know that the law can not be kept, so therefore if that is the test then we all fail and none of us have the Son.

If you have the testimony that Jesus died for you by His blood has set you free, that lives in you and He is in you.

And in that, you are changed to love the world as He does. So if you love the world as if you created it, then you have the Son.

So do you love all of the world?

 

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Sins Forgiven Through Christ

My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; 2and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. 3Now by this we may be sure that we know him, if we obey his commandments. 4Whoever says, “I have come to know him,” but does not obey his commandments, is a liar, and in such a person the truth does not exist; 5but whoever obeys his word, truly in this person the love of God has reached perfection. By this we may be sure that we are in him: 6whoever says, “I abide in him,” ought to walk just as he walked. (1 John 2:1-6, NRSV)

So if you say that you abide in Jesus you need to walk the walk that He did.

And if you do not do as He did you are a liar and do not follow after Jesus.

Meaning you must love everyone where they are and forgive them for how they have wronged you.

You must lift them up and clean them off and send them on their way better than when you found them.

So how do you do on this? Are you a follower of Jesus or a liar?

 

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Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus

5This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. 6If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true; 7but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:5-10, NRSV)

I think we all know that we are sinners. We have all fallen short of the life God intended for us to live.

But sometimes we get caught up in ourselves and we think we know better than God and it is in those moments this text comes into light.

Sometimes we do things for our own self interest and claim they are of God. We work systems so they come out the way we want them rather than following after God’s plan and ways.

Sometimes even as followers we shut off the light rather than spread it.

How can we make sure we are always showing light and not darkness?

 

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Jesus is the Lamb of God

29The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him and declared, “Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 30This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me.’ 31I myself did not know him; but I came baptizing with water for this reason, that he might be revealed to Israel.” 32And John testified, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. 33I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34And I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God.” (John 1:29-34, NRSV)

How many times have you told the people around you about Jesus? And have a reason for knowing Him when they ask?

You see that is all John is doing here, proclaiming who Jesus is and how he knows that.

We are all called to talk about Jesus and to proclaim Him to the world. Jesus came to give us and all of creation new life and when you have that life it should move you to tell others about it.

So who have you told?

 

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The Lord of the Sabbath

At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the sabbath; his disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat. 2When the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, “Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the sabbath.” 3He said to them, “Have you not read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? 4He entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him or his companions to eat, but only for the priests. 5Or have you not read in the law that on the sabbath the priests in the temple break the sabbath and yet are guiltless? 6I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. (Matthew 12:1-6, NRSV)

Was the law made for man or man for the law?

And which is more important following the law or following God?

Because God is greater than the place God is worshipped and greater than everything.

We worship and follow a great God who will forgive us of things that others can not over look.

 

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Purified with the Blood of Christ

Now even the first covenant had regulations for worship and an earthly sanctuary. 2For a tent was constructed, the first one, in which were the lampstand, the table, and the bread of the Presence; this is called the Holy Place. 3Behind the second curtain was a tent called the Holy of Holies. 4In it stood the golden altar of incense and the ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in which there were a golden urn holding the manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant; 5above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. Of these things we cannot speak now in detail. 6Such preparations having been made, the priests go continually into the first tent to carry out their ritual duties; 7but only the high priest goes into the second, and he but once a year, and not without taking the blood that he offers for himself and for the sins committed unintentionally by the people. 8By this the Holy Spirit indicates that the way into the sanctuary has not yet been disclosed as long as the first tent is still standing. 9This is a symbol of the present time, during which gifts and sacrifices are offered that cannot perfect the conscience of the worshiper, 10but deal only with food and drink and various baptisms, regulations for the body imposed until the time comes to set things right. 11But when Christ came as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation), 12he entered once for all into the Holy Place, not with the blood of goats and calves, but with his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption. 13For if the blood of goats and bulls, with the sprinkling of the ashes of a heifer, sanctifies those who have been defiled so that their flesh is purified,14how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to worship the living God! (Hebrews 9:1-14, NRSV)

There was a way prescribed for worship and a setup for the Temple, the house of God.

Only the High Priest was allowed in the Holy of Holies, the place where the Ark was kept which was the throne of God, only once a year and only after purifying himself for the sins unintentionally done by the people. And today we worship in this manner. Because our worship doesn’t purify us. Our worship gets us close to God but does not obtain the perfection that Jesus gets us.

So when we say worship has to be this or that are we feeding our own needs or actually trying to get closer to God?

 

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