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No Knowledge of God

If you would turn on the news chances are you will be bombarded by headlines dealing with murder, all kinds of violent acts, sexual misconduct and scandals. The news is depressing. How did we get here? I want to show you using a story from the Bible.

   There is a book in the Bible called Hosea. Hosea was a prophet and he was known as the 'death-bed prophet'. His story is particularly interesting. He was the last of the prophets before the northern kingdom fell to Assyria. He prophesied during a time that Israel was prosperous and that prosperity eventually lead to moral decay.
   Hosea was commanded by God to marry a "wife of whoredom" (Hosea 1:2), in order to serve as an example of Israel's unfaithfulness to God. Israel committed this adultery because they turned from a God who loved them to worshiping false gods. In essence it is Israel cheating on God with false gods.
   How did they get to that point? Hosea 4:1 writes, "There is no faithfulness or …

Living Life in The Spirit: Set Free From Condemnation

When the eyes of your heart were opened and you realized there was need in your life for God's salvation, and as you began your new life following Jesus one thing you were confronted with is this reality of tension between your desire to live for God and the temptation to sin. Do not take it from me though, take it from Paul. He wrote the book of Romans and in it we see a passage in chapter 7 where we read about this war that rages between his desire to do what is right but not having the ability to do so.    First in Romans 7:14-17 we see this tension Paul expresses that he does not do the good he wants to do but he does the very thing he hates (15). Then we come to Romans 7:18-20 and Paul observes this "desire to do what is is right, but not the ability to carry it out." Then we come to Romans 7:21-23 where Paul recognizes this is war that takes place between our "inner being" and "sin that dwells in my members", that is his flesh. So we see tha…

The Work of The Spirit: Glorifying Jesus.

Why is it to our advantage that Jesus be absent in the world and the Spirit be present? That is the question we have been answering in this blog for sometime now. Just for a recap, the Spirit is in the world to convict us in regards to sin, our disbelief in Jesus; righteousness, our unrighteousness in the sight of God; and judgment on Satan, because he misleads people from Jesus and blinds people from seeing the glory of God in Jesus (John 16:8-11). And the Spirit is in the world to guide us to the truth regarding the divinity of Jesus, mainly, that Jesus is the Son of God (John 16:12,13). Now lets look at a third reason: The Spirit is present in the world to glorify Jesus (John 16:14).

   Jesus continues in His teaching with the disciples by saying in John 16:14, "He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you." See the worlds 'He will glorify me'? Jesus is saying that that the Spirit of truth is coming into the world to glorify Christ. …

The Work of The Spirit: Guiding us to truth.

We are continuing to look at why the Spirit has come into the world and why it was to our advantage that Jesus be absent (John 16:7). Jesus said in John 16:13, "When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come." I want to make one initial point here: The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, is a Spirit of truthfulness. Meaning that the Spirit can only deal with what is authentic, genuine, real, honest and obviously true and what is accurate. In other words, the Holy Spirit cannot nor does He lie. He cannot. The Spirit cannot even give the smallest misrepresentation to anything! The Spirit of God can be trusted! That is a major point considering why He has come into the world and considering that many in the world today have difficulty trusting anything that is in the Word of God, and is important for the remainder of th…

The Work of The Spirit in The World: Satan is judged.

Jesus said in John 16:8 that when the Holy Spirit comes into the world he will come to "convict the concerning sin and righteousness and judgment." In two recent blogs we dealt with sin and righteousness, now lets look at judgment. What does it mean that the Spirit is coming into the world to pronounce the world guilty regarding judgment?

   Let's look at the word "judgment" for a moment. Judgment is defined as the act of instance of judging, or to give a verdict. So the Spirit has come into the world to deliver a verdict. This is no verdict given from just any ordinary judge. This is a diving judgment given by a divine Sovereign. It is a verdict given to condemn our sin nature or a positive verdict for righteousness.

    Why is the Holy Spirit coming into the world regarding judgment? Jesus answer's this question in John 16:11; he would say that the Spirit is coming into the "concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged." Th…

The Work of The Spirit in The World: No One Is Righteous.

The most recent blog I presented was that the Spirit is in the world to help us hit the mark God has set for us and that is to believe in Jesus Christ, and when we do not that is sin. It is titled: 'The Work of The Spirit in The World: Missing The Mark', if you would like to read it and have not. I want to start this blog out by telling you that you are not a good person. Great news! And that is what the Holy Spirit has come into the world to convict you of. Let's explain that.

   Jesus said in John 16:8 "And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment." One of the area's that the Spirit has come to pronounce the world guilty is righteousness. Righteousness means morally right or virtuous. What Jesus is saying is that the Spirit has come into the world to convict us regarding our moral uprightness.

   Why does the Spirit need to come into the world concerning righteousness? Jesus answer's that question with Jo…

The Work of The Spirit in the World: Missing The Mark.

It is good that Jesus is not with us today. Did you know that? In fact, Jesus said it is to our advantage that He is absent: "Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you" (John 16:7). That's Jesus saying it is in our favor that He be absent in the world in order that the Holy Spirit or "Helper" can be present. The Holy Spirit must be some kind of special for someone like Jesus to say this.

   Jesus, to me at least, is a pretty special guy. He is my Savior. I think it is interesting though that Jesus does not say here: "Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to you advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, you sins cannot be forgiven." He does not correlate His absence in the world being to our advantage to forgiveness but the Holy Spirit. 
   One of those reasons that the Holy Spirit is to our advantage is why…

The Holy Spirit & Loving Jesus

What if I told you that to receive the Holy Spirit in your life you would need to do more than believe in Jesus, although that is the start. I am sure, if you know your Bible, you would quote some text that would differ with that opening statement. At least I hope you would. They do exist.       Hear me out for a moment. So many people claim to believe in Jesus yet do not live as Jesus teaches. You know someone like that? I am speaking of the individual who claims to believe in Jesus yet all the while are doing drugs, the individual who believes in Jesus yet is cheating on his or her spouse, the guy who is involved with porn, the person who believes in Jesus and yet is a drunkard or the person who believes in Christ and is involved in homosexuality. Beloved, the Holy Spirit will not abide in a temple that is not clean, even if that person claims Christ. Talk is cheap. And if I were to put receiving the Holy Spirit in a checklist, which I do not believe is right to do but for th…

The Holy Spirit & Your Salvation

No one can enter into the kingdom of God by being religious. They must be born again. A guy in John three by the name of Nicodemus discovered this. He was a Pharisee. A devoutly religious man who believed in the resurrection of the dead and the immortality of the soul. He would also have the responsibility of teaching others the way of God. One night as John recorded it, Nicodemus came to Jesus, as to not be seen, to say, "Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him" (John 3:2).

    Interestingly enough, Jesus just outright made this statement, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God" (3:3). Why would a religious guy be going to Jesus in the cover of night? Why would Jesus begin his conversation with Nicodemus not with a hello but a statement like he made? First, I think Nicodemus did not want to be seen by his fellow Pharisees who disliked…

The Holy Spirit & Worship

It is an unfortunate circumstance that the church is divided as it is today in regard to music. However, it is nothing new. Just check out Ed Stetzer's blog to get a brief rundown on the division that has occurred over the years in the history of the church:
https://www.christianitytoday.com/edstetzer/2013/may/church-music-conflicts.html

     Astonishingly at one time our beloved hymns were at one point thought to be 'worldly' and was termed contemporary. Many ignore this fact. We have forgotten that all things known today was at one point new.

     Charles R. Swindoll wrote a book that is a fascinating read. Recommend it to all. It is called 'The Church Awakening.' I find it encouraging, saddening and challenging. Great book. Anyhow, he wrote a chapter in the book called 'Worship: A Commitment...Not A war'. In it he identifies three area's that fuels 'worship wars', as he coined it, in America's churches. I'd like to give those to…