An Invitation into Covenant

The Bible says we enter into a covenant with God when we accept His offer of eternal life. A covenant always contains responsibilities to be performed by each of the parties. So we often think of our surrender to God’s will as some sort of deal. God and me—our covenant together. But that’s not at all how the Bible portrays it. God always proclaims it to be “My covenant.” He has put us here for a purpose. God planned this party and we’ve been invited to join in the celebration.

Yet we need to appreciate that those who either respond negatively, or who ignore God’s invitation altogether, are actually making a rational choice. Free will demands that we be given such an option, and people will decide in their own self-interest—even as empty as that self-centeredness always turns out to be.  God accepts that. He’s simply separating out His chosen ones.

I Am Your Prize

You hear Me because you take the time to listen. I will speak to anyone who has ears to hear and will spend time in My presence. Not only do I want to impart words to you, but I want to give you My power, My love, My strength and My joy. I desire you to walk in all I have for you. Life is short and you can’t do what I’ve called you to do in your own strength. You need to rely on Me daily. Moment by moment, trusting and believing that I will bring to pass that which I have ordained. Be set apart from this world. Release what you have been holding on to. Reach for Me, for I am your prize. I am your joy, your peace and your strength. 

Clothed in Christ’s Righteousness

In Jesus’ parable about the Wedding Feast, the host found a man not dressed in formal wedding attire.  Given the importance of the event, he flaunted disrespect through this breach of etiquette. In choosing to spurn what was proper, his act of rebellion insulted the groom’s family. And it’s interesting that the host didn’t give him the chance to run home and change. No, he knew the rules, or at least should have. Yet he defiantly chose to push the limits of the host’s graciousness by doing just as he pleased. He deserved to be thrown out.

There’s only one way to heaven. We are welcomed by God because He has clothed us in His own righteousness through Christ’s redeeming sacrifice. The Bible says, “Without faith it is impossible to please God.” Faith is the key to our relationship with Him. It’s all about believing what Jesus said about Himself, and then acting on it.

If Only I Could be Recognized

The desire for recognition is a central to our nature. The alienation that results from a lack of acknowledgement causes deep emotional hardship. God understands this about us, and He has done something about it. But He goes further than mere recognition. God honors us—He esteems His children.

Jesus made this apparent in His parable about the Wedding Feast: the guests were being honored simply by being invited. Yet nothing would have come of it without their reply: “Yes, I would love to be there!” Can you see why God would be pleased by such a response? At the same time, we can appreciate how grieved He is over those who wouldn’t bother to take the time to attend, or worse yet those who neglected to reply at all. The Bible puts it this way in First Samuel 2:30: “Those who honor Me I will honor, and those who despise Me will be lightly esteemed.

From: The Path through the Maze—Answering Life’s Ultimate Question: What Happens After We Die?

Wisdom Shouts in the Street!

“Professing to be wise, they became fools,” says Paul in Romans 1:22. As the ungodly chase meaning in their lives, the futility of their pursuits is pretty obvious to the Christian. But what about those in the church who attempt to supplement biblical truth with human philosophy? This is where things get a bit fuzzy. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,” Proverbs 1:7 proclaims.

So when we as believers seek truth from worldly sources, all the while failing to really understand what the Bible has to say about life, trouble is brewing. In so doing, many have been led astray. A solid understanding of God’s purpose, found only in the Bible, must always come first. Only then can we discern genuine truth. Jesus didn’t pull any punches: “I am the way, the truth, and the life.“ He also declared, “you will know truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 14:6, 8:32.

These are the things I will do

“I will lead the blind by a way they do not know, in paths they do not know I will guide them. I will make darkness into light before them, and rugged places into plains. These are the things I will do, and I will not leave them undone.” Isaiah 42:16

It’s All About God

The principle of honoring God is laced throughout the entire Bible. God’s creation exists for the sole purpose of glorifying its Creator. God demands that He be honored, not for some selfish desire but simply because He is God. Put yourself in His shoes. Wouldn’t you want to be recognized for who you really are if you not only had the power to speak the universe into existence, but were also so loving and benevolent that your one desire was to share a part of yourself with us?

Clearly God has created us for Himself.  Jesus came to reunite us with Himself, giving us the ability to understand and know Him, with the intention of allowing us to ultimately share eternal life in Him. So let’s, “… walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God,” as Paul so insightfully prays in Colossians 1:10.

Boasting in Scripture

Pride is instinctive to human nature. So boasting, no matter how we may attempt to disguise it, flows from our core as effortlessly as breathing. We simply need to express who we are and what we’ve accomplished—“wise, strong or rich,” as the Lord explains in Jeremiah 9:23. Still, there seems to be a place for boasting. God goes on to say: “let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things,” declares the Lord.

The key here is to redirect the glory away from ourselves and on to God. Paul makes it all very clear in 2 Corinthians 11 &12, “If I have to boast, I will boast of what pertains to my weakness.”  “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness,” the Lord Jesus proclaims.

You’ve been Invited!

What if you were invited to a party of a lifetime, so lavish, so impressive, that everyone who knew you would be green with envy? Why him? What did he do to deserve such an honor?

Maybe you have been asked, but just don’t know it! The truth is, a priceless invitation has delivered by God Himself, not just to you but everyone on earth. Invited to what? To an eternity united with God for an indescribable life you never dreamed possible: the party of all parties!

Yes, whether you are aware of it or not, you’ve been invited. The question is, “Who’s listening?” Are you among those who genuinely seek the truth? And if so, are you asking the right questions? Just what is required of me to be included with those who will enjoy eternity in heaven? Jesus said it well in the Bible: “Many are called, but few are chosen.”

From: The Path through the Maze—Answering Life’s Ultimate Question: What Happens After We Die?

Don’t Despise the Small Things

Sown all around the hem of Aaron’s robe were “blue and scarlet pomegranates, with gold bells between them.” The tinkling of the bells accentuated the duties he was performing, just as the gifts of the Spirit tend to draw attention to God’s power through us today. But what about the pomegranates? If the bells represent spiritual gifts, maybe the pomegranates speak of the fruit of the Spirit.

Makes sense. But why pomegranates? Why not apples or oranges? Well, the answer jumps out when we break the pomegranate open. Inside are hundreds of tiny fruits, each with its own seed. It makes me think about the little things I’m able to do, and what impact each of those small good works might have on those around me. Often what seems somewhat insignificant is what’s actually vitally important. And planting godly seed in in this way is easily within our grasp.