RSS

Category Archives: Jesus Christ

It’s grace, grace, God’s grace.

Thanks first of all to the grace of God. The grace of God is freely given to those who believe and the righteousness of Christ is credited to him. We read in Romans 4:1-8:

1 What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? 2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. 3 For what does the Scripture say? Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness. 4 Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. 5 And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, 6 just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works: 7 Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; 8 blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.

Secondly, a big hat tip to Scott at Through The Veil for finding this incredible video that says it all.

Advertisements
 
7 Comments

Posted by on July 31, 2008 in God, grace, Jesus Christ, righteousness

 

Could Jesus be more popular?

Nearly forty-two years ago to the day, July 29th, 1966, the teeny bop magazine DATEbook published the excerpt of an earlier John Lennon interview where he stated that the Beatles were “more popular than Jesus.” Although the remarks were really on the subject of Christianity and taken somewhat out of context, the outcry and response from the United States was loud and clear. “How dare you say something as bold as that.” It was as though Lennon made those statements of our country instead of Jesus. People flooded to the streets in protest by piling Beatles records up and burning them. Television stations broadcast public smashing of Beatles records. To this day it remains as one of the biggest pop music scandals in history.

Reading about this event in history prompted me to consider the question. Should Jesus be popular? In the context of the whole world I would not affirm this. There are passages in the bible that state otherwise concerning the popularity of Jesus. In Isaiah 53:2,3 of the Old Testament we read of Christ:

2 For He grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; He had no form or majesty that we should look at Him, and no beauty that we should desire Him. 3 He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.

In 1 Corinthians of the New Testament Paul wrote that the “cross of Christ is foolishness to those who are perishing” and “a stumbling block to the Jews and folly to the Gentiles.” He also writes later in verse 28:

God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are,

In the American church today we are trying our best to make Christianity popular. We are are watering down the gospel of Christ to make it more palatable and attractive. In doing so the true gospel is not being preached. For if it were, it would not be attractive and popular in the world’s eyes.

So in one sense an enthusiastic YES, Jesus Christ should be the most popular thing in the life of the believer. We should be living and breathing the gospel of Christ. Our whole being should point the lost to Jesus Christ. In another sense, it is a fool’s road you travel if your intention in ministry is to make Jesus popular in the eyes of the world.

For further reading please check out the reading links below.

A huge Hat Tip goes to Jason J. Stellman and his article “Where Is Grace Found” in Modern Reformation. I especially like the section entitled “What Hath Saddleback To Do with Geneva?

 

The substitutionary death of Jesus Christ

 

Sunday morning Senior Pastor Patrick Abendroth delivered a profound sermon on the importance of the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ on the cross. We were continuing in our verse by verse study of Matthew. Just how important is the substititionary death of Christ? We started by looking at 1 Corinthians 1:18:

The word of the cross is foolishness to those who are persishing, but to those who are being saved it is the power of God.

So how important is it to you? Is it the power of God, or is it just foolishness and unimportant? The perfect lamb of God met the righteouness of God at the moment in time. Pat went on preach about the two cries of Jesus on the cross that say it all about everything. The cries are found in Matthew 27:45-50. Please listen to the incredible sermon linked below and see if it isn’t just astounding to you as well.

Forsaken By God

 

Before Abraham was, I am

 

I am currently reading through the book of John in the bible. Today as I completed chapter eight I came across this verse close to the end, verse 58 to be exact, where Jesus undeniably states that he is God. This takes place right after Jesus had truthfully defended the woman who had been caught in adultry and brought to Him. Throughout this chapter He has been more or less debating with the Jews about who He is. The Jewish leaders seem to believe their “ace in the hole” is the proclamation that their father is Abraham. It is then that Jesus turns up the heat on their pride and sin and proclaims:

Before Abraham was, I am

Now this proclamation not only offended the Jewish leaders but it also flys in the face of a couple of American religions of today. The Mormons claim that Jesus was a man who obtained deity. They believe that He is a created being and the brother of Adam and Lucifer. The Jehovah’s Witness believe much the same way. They also believe that Jesus is a created being and not God. They claim to be declaring the witness of God. But essetially what both of these religions are doing is denying the very witness that God reveals in the New Testament. That Jesus is who He claims to be. In John 10:30 Jesus again states:

I and the Father are one

And again the Jews were incredibly offended as the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses would be today if you were to point that out to them. The New Testament declares throughout:

He is the brightness of the Father. He is the express image of God. He is literally the replica, the duplicate of the invisible God.

So as I read the scripture this morning, I couldn’t help but marvel at this truth revealed to us. The mystery of the invisible God revealed in Jesus Christ. He is who he claims to be. He is God. 

For further reading about the Incarnation of Jesus Christ I would recommend the text from a sermon by Dr. John MacArthur called “The Inside Story of the Incarnation“. 

Soli Deo Gloria