Monday, May 11, 2009 In Christ Kathleen Maples In Christ 2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. What does it mean to be in Christ? A human is a living being. But to be in Christ, your life is in HIM-you begin to want His ways, not yours, His thoughts, not yours, His divine power, not human strength. To be in Christ is to recognize human wisdom and strength are not sufficient, the source is found only in HIM. All the old things, habits, ways of thinking, ways of living independently, begin to pass away. We begin to do things in a new way-one that requires total dependence on HIM. We exchange our insufficient human frailties for His divine life. We reject our independence and cling to Him in submission and total, absolute dependence. We begin to understand, under the leadership of the Holy Ghost that we can't do anything in our own strength that will please Him. Only what is done by the power of the Spirit of God working through us will be acceptable because what the Spirit does, the flesh (or self) can't take credit for. Rom 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: It's only through Jesus Christ, through His work, His love, His holiness, His sinless sacrifice of Himself on the cross, that appeases God's demand for justice since humanity violated His divine law. Because He has made this knowledge available, and given us the faith required to believe this truth, that it is what JESUS did that satisfies God's requirement that a penalty be paid for sin. We are declared right by God-justified because we believed the Truth (Joh 14:6- Jesus said HE is the way, the truth and the life and no man comes to the Father but by HIM). As we see this, we can rest in this. We have hope. As we travel on this journey of faith with the Lord, He teaches us. We experience things that are sometimes painful. The Holy Spirit will begin to show us things in our heart that are unlike Him and because we love Him, are learning to love Him and know Him, it grieves us. We didn't know that awful thing was in our heart. It was buried so deep we didn't see it. We were blissfully ignorant of the depravity of our human heart. And we can begin to despair. We hear a message preached on the coming of the Lord, and condemnation and fear can grip us. The Holy Ghost is faithful-being the Holy Spirit of God, having the mind of God, and our best interest at heart, to not abandon us because we are not perfect. We need to understand though, if the thought of the coming of the Lord causes us to fear and dread it's because deep down we are still trusting in our own righteousness, not His. We are still looking to ourselves, mourning over ourselves and our own inability to in ourselves please God, instead of looking to His perfect, spotless sacrifice, and His completion of the work. If we are striving in our own selves to live the Christian life, instead of showing up for prayer and digging in this Book depending on HIM to make it real in our lives, we can do nothing but fail. We will miss the mark every time. That is sin. Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. Without faith it is impossible to please God and He that comes to God must believe He is there, and that He rewards them that diligently seek Him. He rewards them by revealing Himself and His mind, by opening their understanding to His Word. They diligently, frequently, always seek HIM (not looking to self) because they know only He can do this divine work in them. 2Pe 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, 2Pe 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: 2Pe 1:4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. It's by His promises, and our faith in His promises that we are granted access to partake of His divine nature. How do we partake of His divine nature? We read His Word, we commune through prayer but we must be filled with His Holy Spirit. His Holy Spirit is His divine nature. Amen? What an awesome, glorious God!! In the times we live in, there has never been a greater need to draw closer to Him, to know Him for ourselves. I was on the Times Square Church website yesterday (http://www.tscnyc.org/index.php) and they have an emergency alert page up now, so if something happens and they cannot gather at the church in New York City, they can still stream the messages and get a word out to the people. They are making preparations, and they are following the instructions and leadership of the Holy Spirit. He knows something is coming, and we don't know what it is, but we have been warned. If we are struggling with fear, depression over failing finances or failing health, the uncertainty of the economy, we can always find strength and help in time of need at the throne of God. He's given us access. Heb 4:14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. HYPERLINK "http://bible.logos.com/passage/kjv/Heb 4.15" \t "_blank" Heb 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. HYPERLINK "http://bible.logos.com/passage/kjv/Heb 4.16" \t "_blank" Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. That spirit of fear is not from God. He has not given us a spirit of fear, but of love and of power and of a sound mind. (2 Tim 1:7 ) He has never failed one single person who put their trust in Him and not themselves. We can't keep ourselves. We can't secure ourselves in this dangerous world. We are kept by the power of God through faith.. 1Pe 1:3 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, Oh, bless the Lord, Oh my soul, and forget not all His benefits, His love, His mercy, His provision, His grace and truth which are only found in Jesus Christ. Bless the God and Father of our LORD Jesus Christ who will not fail us or forsake us in the greatest hour of need the church has ever known. It always gets darkest at the end of the night before daylight. He's given us a wonderful hope of a life with Him forever. He alone can infuse His life in us and raise us as He raised Christ-by the power of the Holy Spirit in us. 1Pe 1:4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, 1Pe 1:5 Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. It's almost time, saints! He has something reserved for the faithful, something that is not corrupt, that can't be corrupted, or defiled and will never fade away, reserved just for those who endure to the end and refuse to let go of their faith in God no matter how hard circumstances conspire with the devil to tempt and try your faith. Think of that. He has something precious-an eternal inheritance reserved in Heaven for us who do not quit, who do not give up, and who will not allow anything to separate us from Him. We won't lay our Bibles and our prayer life down due to despair. No, we find comfort and strength in His Presence. We may have in the past let the devil and our own conscience shame us and hinder us but He's given us the victory and by faith we stand in that victorious work of HIS SON, not anything we have done, and that is our ticket into His Presence to find all the help and strength and grace we need. One day at a time, one prayer at a time, one breath at a time! Glory to GOD!!!!!! 1Pe 1:6 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: HYPERLINK "http://bible.logos.com/passage/kjv/1Pe 1.7" \t "_blank" 1Pe 1:7 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: Oh, yes, we can rejoice because just like He set a joy before His Son who endured the cross, despising the shame, but He endured because God set a glorious promise before Him and He has set one before us too!! Yes, there are many kinds of temptations, many kind of problems, and our faith is being tried and tested more than ever. But that's to purify our faith. Without these trials, we would never learn God delivers His children and how. When they are over, we will see it was Him all along in the fire with us. Watching carefully, guarding us just like He did Israel at the Red Sea when Pharaoh's army came over that hill, hell-bent on destroying God's people! When you see these things, look UP not down. Your help comes from above not beneath! Oh, Glory, I pray His Spirit minister His peace to your troubled heart. He said Let not your heart be troubled, you believe in God, believe also in ME! Just as My Father kept Me in the greatest trial I had on this earth, I will keep you! And that faith that is being purified will be a praise and honor to Him. He can testify of us to all of Heaven's angels, and to the Father, they trusted in Me as I trusted in You, Father. Welcome them home! Oh, yes, Glory to God! Hold on to your confidence, do not let it go for anything! For it has great rewards. Don't surrender to the enemy's buffeting that prize he so desperately seeks-your faith! Even if you are so weary and without strength all you can do is stand still. Then stand. Be still and know HE is God. Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord! 1Pe 1:8 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: HYPERLINK "http://bible.logos.com/passage/kjv/1Pe 1.9" \t "_blank" 1Pe 1:9 Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls. Isn't that what it's all about? Seeing Him! Being like Him. Hearing Him say well done, enter in to the joy of the Lord. The joy of the Lord....welcoming His own home. The end of your faith is the salvation of your soul. Only He can save you. He is faithful who has promised. AMEN!!!! Where else would we want to be but IN Christ? Oh, let us seek His strength to completely die to self and this world and let our life be founded and hid only in Christ! Col 3:2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. Col 3:3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. Col 3:4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
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