“… As a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name. For it is time for judgment to begin with God’s household; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God?”
Religious polarization have tricked many people into believing that to be a Christian is to join a church, adopt a creed or profess a belief in God! No! This is a right. The truth is that churches, creeds, and the God they worship could be false (idol). According to the scripture, we are encouraged to unveil facts through studying the word of God, and anchor our belief in God only through JESUS CHRIST. “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder” (James 2:19 NIV).
As a Christian, our major problem is SIN, and a belief in God through Jesus Christ is our only solution. WHY? In Christ alone is the GRACE of God revealed, and through His blood is the price for all sins is paid.
As a Christian, you are invited to many unlimited promises of God. As we weigh in on some of them in today’s devotional, it is important to note that each of these views are for you. If you believe, receive and obey, You are a Christian.
Every false religion is a representation of the thief (Satan). According to Jesus, “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy, I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows)” (John 10:10 AMP). This gift of everlasting life is through the grace of God. Grace means a ‘unmerited favor’, so as a sinner, none of us deserves to live, but Christ died in our place so that we might live. To enjoy this abundant everlasting life, you alone MUST make Christ your personal Lord and Savior. “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:23, 24 NIV).
A sin is to do anything that contradicts God’s rule. It is not only in actions, sin also comes through thought, sight or deeds. Do you think you have sinned? The many consequences of sin includes separation from God (Isaiah 59:2), physical and spiritual death (Romans 6:23), sickness (2 Chronicles 7:14), wrath and damnation to hell. “And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what they had done. Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:10, 13, 15 NIV).
2. THE AUTHOR OF OUR SALVATION
At the Cross of Calvary, Jesus purchased our salvation. As an atoning sacrifice for our sins, Christ died. To be found fit for this gift of God, you have to believe all that the scripture said about Christ. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us”(Romans 5:8 NIV). “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins” (1 John 4:10 NIV). The Calvary miracle destroyed death, so the fear is no more. The death, resurrection and ascension of Christ kept Satan and his demons bound for us, so the only way to partake this is through faith, obedience and fellowship with Jesus Christ in the churches. ” You must be Born-Again, born of the water and the spirit” ( John 3:5,7).
The essence of being a believer is to receive a re-union with God, through Jesus Christ. When one is born again, the gift of God called the Holy Spirit is given. At this point, truth about God is revealed to us in our heart. This revelation will be convicting to enable us to have remorse for our sins. Repentance therefore will follow. Through the gospel, a sinner makes a public declaration of his intention to become a follower of Jesus Christ. At repentance, you have made your first step. Now, your other sins through the Holy Spirit will be revealed to you (and you alone). By confessing it to God (who already knew about them), you are forgiven. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9 NIV).
Since Christ did all things for us by His death, to be baptized requires our obedience to God through repentance. “Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life” (Romans 6:3, 4 NIV).
The key part of baptism is confession and repentance or our sin. The bible says, “Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38 NIV). If you do it right, you must be filled with the Holy Spirit. At this point, the things of the world will become vanity, but Christ in me, the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27).
5. THE GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
The promise of God to all believers is the Gift of the Holy Spirit. As the counsellor, the Holy Spirit guides us into the perfect will of God. “But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you” (John 14:26 NIV). The demonstrations of this gift of God are many, but as a believer, He must tell you the truth about God, and yourself.
With the Holy Spirit, the power of God is for all healing, deliverance, intercession, victory, strength, joy, peace, focus, hope, eternity. The Holy Spirit seals us from the fiery darts of this world, and the attack of the devil. Do you have the Holy Spirit? This is how you should know; through His fruits. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law” (Galatians 5:22, 23 NIV). You can not force your way into Him. When you get born again, He will come to and into you!
May the Grace and Peace of God through Christ be with you. Remember, what is written, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36 NIV). Remain Blessed, in Jesus Name, Amen.
Scripture of the day: “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality” ~ (Romans 12:10-13 NIV).
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