Often, when we are sharing the gospel with an unbeliever we think that we must begin with a blank slate in regards to their understanding of and adherence to God and salvation. We try our best to understand their perspective and their personal narrative and see how we can fit in the gospel message.
Oftentimes we do not think that other people can fully relate to us; we say that “they are not in our shoes” so that they cannot judge us or correct us. The word of God teaches us that Jesus was able to fully deliver and save us because He Himself suffered in His humanity like we suffer (Hebrews 2:14-18). It was out of this knowledge that He was able to make us righteous. The following passage taken from Isaiah 53 will be examined in the light of this concept.
There is a dearth of fatherlessness in the world and in the church today. The emotional and spiritual effects of this have been nothing less than catastrophic! The following are some of the symptoms of fatherlessness. (This can be applied to both natural and spiritual fathers.)
As a Christian in ministry for over 30 years I have become an astute observer of human nature and behavior. The older and more mature I become, the more I understand the scripture in John 2:23-25:
The way of life we are called to live in order to live a life Jesus can bless
The Sermon on the Mount of Jesus (Matthew 5:1-12) is perhaps the greatest exposition ever written regarding godly character and attitude. In this section of scripture, Jesus is seen as the new Moses, speaking from a mountain after going through the waters of baptism (a type of the Red Sea) and being in the wilderness. He is presenting a new way of kingdom life; with this sermon many scholars believe Jesus is giving the real interpretation of the law of God (Exodus 20). Often the ten attributes mentioned here are overlooked because, in our performance-based culture, inward holiness is not as important as outward fruit. However, being transformed into the image and character of Christ is a prerequisite before we can walk in the ministry and power of Christ.
“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.” (Isaiah 9:6-7).
As a believer with a Pentecostal experience since 1978, I have seen many genuine moves of God as well as many counterfeit works of the flesh. Unfortunately, many believers lack the discernment to tell the difference between what is of God and what originates with man.
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