I Peter Chapter One

Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.

Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.

Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.

Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: but as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear: forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever.

For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: but the word of the Lord endureth forever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.

I Peter 1:1-25

…let the word of Christ dwell (take up its life in you) richly…

The Church

The Church

The Church: one true church, the body and bride of Christ (Ephesians 1:22-23; 5:25-32), composed of all true believers of the present age (1 Corinthians 12:12-13) and the organization of its members in local churches for worship, for edification of believers and for worldwide gospel witness; each local church being autonomous but cooperating in fellowship and work (Ephesians 4:11-16).

His Body: And hath put all things under his (Jesus) feet, and gave him (Jesus) to be the head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.  Ephesians 1:22-23

His Bride: Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.  Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband. Ephesians 5:25-32

His Members: For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.  I Corinthians 12:12-13

His Gifts: And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

His Purpose: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love. Ephesians 4:11-16

…let the word of Christ dwell (take up its life) in you richly…

Everlasting Life

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  John 3:16

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.  John 5:24

Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting. Luke 18:30

He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.      John 3:36

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. John 6:47

And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. Matthew 25:46

What is everlasting life, life eternal, or life everlasting?  It is life that never ends.  Can you lose everlasting life?  If you can lose everlasting life then it is not everlasting and it is not from the God of the Bible.

What kind of life do you have?  If you can lose it, it is not everlasting.  If you lost it, then you never truly had everlasting life to begin with.

…let the word of Christ dwell (take up its life in you) richly…

Note:  If you believed that you could not lose your salvation when you became a Christian, but changed your mind based on someone’s teaching, then you were simply taught incorrectly.  If, when you became saved, you believed that you could lose your salvation, then you have never been truly saved.  God the Father, through His Son Jesus Christ, only grants believers life that is everlasting .

The Doctrine of Salvation

Salvation: a complete and eternal salvation by God’s grace alone, received as the gift of God through personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and His finished work.

For by grace (unmerited favor & enabling)* are ye saved through faith (a firm persuasion or conviction brought about by hearing the Word of God)*; and that not of yourselves: it is the (free)* gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.          Ephesians 2:8&9

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy (the outward manifestation of pity)* he saved us, by the washing (cleansing)* of regeneration (the new birth)*, and renewing (transforming)* of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified (acquitted)* by his grace (unmerited favor & enabling)*, we should be made heirs (one who receives something other than by merit)* according to the hope (confident assurance)* of eternal life. Titus 3:5-7

Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain (empty)* conversation (manner of life)* received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: 1 Peter 1:18-19

…let the word of Christ dwell (take up its life) in you richly…

*W.E. Vines Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words – copyright 1984, 1996  Thomas Nelson, Inc. Nashville, TN 

The Christmas Story-Part III

THE CHRISTMAS STORY – PART III

Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.

And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.

And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,

And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.

Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.

And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.

When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.

And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.

And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.

And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.

When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt:

And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son.

Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men.

Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying,

In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.

But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt,

Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead which sought the young child’s life.

And he arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel.

But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither: notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee:

And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene.

Matthew 2:1-23

The Christmas Story-Part II

THE CHRISTMAS STORY – PART II

And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.

(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)

And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)

To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.

And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Luke 2:1-20

The Christmas Story-Part I

THE CHRISTMAS STORY

Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily.

But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,

Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:

And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

Matthew 1:18-25

Mary’s Song

It has been said that if something is worth saying the first time, it is worth repeating. To believer’s in Christ, I repeat myself in today’s post as we observe Mary in Scripture. What an example to the New Testament believer in letting the Word dwell in you richly!

MARY’S SONG OF PRAISE
DECEMBER 21, 2016

After Mary’s visit from the angel Gabriel and during her visit with Elizabeth, John the Baptist’s mother, Mary exalted the the Lord.

And Mary said, My soul doth magnify (to make great) the Lord,

And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.

For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden [female bond (willing) slave]: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed (count me happy).

For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy (set apart) is his name.

And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.

He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.

He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.

He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.

He hath holpen (helped) his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy;

As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.

Luke 1:46 – 55

Mary’s song is full of Old Testament Scripture. It contains parts of approximately two dozen Old Testament passages in these nine verses.* John MacArthur lists the passages in the notes of his NKJV Study Bible and he summarizes her song as follows:

Mary’s Magnificat is filled with OT allusions and quotations. It reveals that Mary’s heart and mind were saturated with the Word of God………….These verses also contain numerous allusions to the law, the psalms, and the prophets. The entire passage is a point-by-point reciting of the covenant promises of God.*

What Mary’s song reveals about her is that she is a willing and obedient servant unto the Lord God. She is trusting in God’s promises of provision for her own sin. Mary is trusting in God her Saviour and she is happy!

Mary is the Old Testament equivalent of a New Testament Spirit filled believer. She knows God’s Word and she let’s it dwell in her richly. The result is humility and obedience.

Her response to the angel Gabriel in verse 38 is; Let it be to me according to your word. This should be the prayer of all believers ; Let it be unto me, O Lord, according to your (written) Word.

Note: Although Mary’s song reveals much about her, her song is really all about God.

…let the word of Christ dwell (take up its life) in you richly…

Word definitions are from W.E. Vines Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, Copyright 1984, 1996, Thomas Nelson, Inc., Nashville, TN.

*Notes on Luke 1:46-55 taken from the MacArthur Study Bible NKJV – Copyright 1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Wiser Than God!

All scripture is given by inspiration of God (II Timothy 3:16a).  The word inspiration means God breathed.  All Scripture is God breathed as to source.

Do you know that if you deny something that God makes clear in His Word, you are accusing Him of lying,…….and you are making yourself wiser than God?

The Scripture declares: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)  There is none righteous, no, not one. (Romans 3:10)

If we say that we have not sinned, we make him (God) a liar, and his word is not in us.  I John 1:10

…let the word of Christ dwell (take up its life) in you richly… 

What Things?

But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.

Just before the apostle Paul made the statement above he gave his pedigree as follows: Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.  Philippians 3:4-6

When Paul submitted himself to the righteousness of Christ, those former things making up his pedigree, became loss to him.  MacArthur’s notes in his NKJV study Bible indicate that the terms Paul used in Philippians 3, loss and gain, were accounting terms.* Those things that were gain became loss and were now liabilities.  Those things that were loss became gain and were now assets. 

The apostle Paul’s statement makes us ask ourselves: What things are gain to me?  What are those things that cause me to trust in the flesh?  What are those things that draw me away from trusting Christ?

What things cause us to trust in the flesh?

Personal glory

Reputation/Respect

Making a Name for Myself

Pedigree/Accolades

Intellectual Prowess

Acceptance/Recognition/Admiration

Riches/Success/Accomplishments

Pleasure/Leisure

Friends (of stature)

Financial Security

Titles

What did the apostle Paul conclude about the things that were gain to him in the past?

Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,

And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;

If by any means I might attain unto (arrive at) the resurrection of the dead.  Philippians 3:7-11

Works establish self-righteousness.  Salvation by grace through faith is based only on the merit of Christ and Christ provides believers with the righteousness of God.

                            The just shall live by His faith.  Habakkuk 2:4, Romans1:17, Galatians 3:11, Hebrews 10:38.

…let the word of Christ dwell (take up its life) in you richly…

*Notes on Philippians 3:7 taken from the MacArthur Study Bible NKJV – Copyright 1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

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