Known of God (Part One)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

It is interesting to look back over our lives and try to remember the first thoughts that we may have had about God. Was God real, or simply a myth? Was He so far removed from humanity that He really is only a mirage? But when we turn this around, we see from God’s point of view, that He has always loved and known us. He has been waiting since the beginning of time for man to seek Him out.

Galatians 4:9a:
But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God. . .

“After that ye have known God,” refers to after our salvation we become acquainted with our God, yet God has always been acquainted with us. Recall John 3:16 “for God so loved the world.” This is still true today; He still loves the people in the world. God loved you in His foreknowledge and knew you would be born.

Romans 8:28:
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose.

How many things according to God’s Word work together for good? All things will work together for good! These good things God desires and gives to them who love Him. It is a misunderstanding of biblical light to assume that some of us were not called according to God’s purpose. Every person who God has ever called was called according to His purpose. The reason that things do not always work out for good is that we are in control of our believing and future (on earth), not God, for we have free will. The more we know of God’s Word, and the more we believe in spiritual principles, the greater our spiritual life becomes. God calls us and desires good things to come our way, and they will come our way when we believe they will work together for good to them that love God.

Ephesians 2:10:
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

A master artisan’s work is always his pride and joy. We are God’s workmanship – we are His pride and joy. God knew us from before the world began and He has foreordained that we should walk into His good works – this is when all things work together for good. Notice that in the verse above it says, “That we should walk in them.” This is not a command, but rather it is a request. When we, out of our own personal love for God, begin walking in His good works, then we will begin to realize how awesomely they truly are ordained for our own good.

God created man. He has always known exactly how men and women work and play the best, so when God says that all things work together for good to them that love Him; it will be so. This is how God’s children begin to realize that they are known of God.

See: Known of God (Part Two)

I AM THAT I AM

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

For so many, God is simply an intangible Being with various titles, concepts, and ideas that hold vague meanings and implications. People sometimes refer to God as the man upstairs or the great I AM or the spirit in the sky, while others speculate, I know that there is something (or someone) out there (or up there) because I can see the order and perfection of life all around, but whatever power it is or wherever that power may originate, I just cannot grasp its real source. Some of us may have thought of God in suchlike terms before knowing Jesus Christ, “the Prince of life” (Acts 3:15), who introduced our searching hearts to His Majesty’s loving embrace and eternal purpose.

One could see all the works of man and easily believe that there is no God, but how can he look up into the starry heavens or view the perfection of life all around and still believe there is no God? The more we understand God via knowing Jesus Christ, the greater our spiritual lives grow as our union with the heavenly Father and with nature itself begins harmonizing with tranquility. All of the Prophets in the Old Testament preached about Christ and through knowing him, God becomes more magnified and detailed.

Exodus 3:14:
And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.

The most basic understanding of these words I AM THAT I AM means that God cannot deny His own existence. Simply put ― God is Who He is. The Apostle Paul said of himself in I Corinthians 15:10 “by the grace of God I am what I am.” Paul could not deny who he was, and that he was who he was only by the grace of God; it is the same with us, we are who we are only by the grace of God, for He is our Maker. Even Popeye understood who he was, “I yam what I yam and that’s all what I yam, I’m Popeye the sailor man,” (“toot, toot!”). It is no mystery understanding who God is; it is a mystery why so many people do not know who God is when Jesus Christ our Savior reveals Him to our inner hearts.

Man is truly something to behold from God’s perspective; Hebrews 2:6-9 records that the Son of God as well as Man were made just “a little lower than the angels.” The Hebrew word for angels in Hebrews 2 is Elohim and is the word for God, corresponding to the Greek word Theos, not angels. This is a huge mistranslation, which has greatly lowered expectations. Angels is the Hebrew word malak corresponding to the Greek word aggelos.

Man was made a little lower than the Creator of the universe, which is actually quite high up on the pedestal of God’s creation, higher than the angels who were created to be servants and ministers of God (Psalms 104:4, Hebrews 1:14). In contrast we, the children of God, are His sons and daughters (I John 2:1-2), and masterpieces of His creative “workmanship” (Ephesians 2:10), and the saved man becomes the crowning achievement of God. He “crowned us with glory and honour” (Psalms 8:4-5), creating nothing less than Christ in us, thus, we truly are what we are by the grace of God, and it is something to behold.

In Exodus chapter 3, God, by referring to Himself as I AM THAT I AM was showing Moses the true essence of Himself, and as Moses saw for himself the immensity of God, Moses began believing that he could rise up to his God‑given calling to deliver Israel.

God was preparing Moses to do some extraordinary exploits by way of delivering the children of Israel from the bondage of cruel slavery where they were imprisoned in the land of idol worship and servitude. Moses was also going to teach Israel about the spiritual realities of the Golden Thread, of him who was prophesied; the Christ, the awaited Messiah and Savior, and their rock of strength and hope (Deuteronomy 32:30-31).

I AM hath sent me unto you is not all that God exclusively told Moses to say to the children of Israel to inspire them to follow him off into the desert without food and water. Simply saying I AM hath sent me unto you was not (is not, and never will be) a magical phrase that mysteriously empowered Israel (or anyone else for that matter) to get up and get going into the barren desert (that only happens in the movies).

I Corinthians 10:4:
And {the children of Israel} did all drink the same spiritual drink {given by Moses}: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them {or rather who came after them}: and that Rock was {is, and will always be} Christ.

Moses began revealing the Messiah to the children of Israel (Deuteronomy 18:15, Acts 3:22-23). Then, as the Israelites began to figuratively drink and savor the comforting words that flowed from the mouth of Moses, they began perceiving the subject of all true prophecy, the rock Christ who came after them, as is recorded for posterity in the Gospels.

The hope of the coming of Christ was what inspired them to get moving over to the Promised Land where their Redeemer would come to redeem them. Jesus Christ became known through the spoken Word of God by Moses. This is how Moses strengthened Israel to the point that they also began believing in He Who could not deny Himself, in He Who said to Moses: I AM.

Hebrews 11:6:
But without faith {believing faith} it is impossible to please him {God}: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

The reward itself inspired Israel, as well as Moses, to boldly go through the sweltering desert to the other side, to where the promise awaited, to the place of hope, to home, and to their destiny. Within the heart of their hearts they had the knowledge of Christ (who is the Word, John 1:14) who not only followed after them in the fullness of time, but to the very place where he would redeem, in their Promised Land of milk and honey.

Hebrews 11:24-27 (The Amplified Bible):**
-24: [Aroused] by {believing} faith Moses, when he had grown to maturity and become great, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter;
-25: Because he preferred to share the oppression [suffer the hardships] and bear the shame of the people of God rather than to have the fleeting enjoyment of a sinful life.
-26: He considered the contempt and abuse and shame [borne for] the Christ (the Messiah Who was to come) to be greater wealth than all {ALL} the treasures of Egypt, for he looked forward and away to the reward {the eternal reward that God gives}.
-27: [Motivated] by {believing} faith he left Egypt behind him, being unawed and undismayed by the wrath of the king {Pharaoh}: for he never flinched but held staunchly to his purpose and endured steadfastly as one who gazed on Him Who is invisible.

The Greek word for faith is pistis, and means believing faith, of which Christ is man’s author and finisher, (Hebrews 12:2), and if one is in need of more faith, then faith will be found through knowing Jesus Christ in the Word of God, “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). By Moses choosing to believe in Christ, he chose an apparent life of hardship with the bound slaves of Egypt. He walked away from Pharaoh’s household and the life of luxury and looked to the invisible God of his conscious mind Who comforts and rescues from fear and rewards believing-faith in Christ.

Moses’ standing as a leader in Egypt was perhaps similar to that of the Apostle Paul who regarded his social standing as a blameless Pharisee in the Law and being in the top echelon of his class (Philippians 3:4-10). Yet in comparison Paul counted it all as nothing but “dung, that I may win {or gain} Christ” (Philippians 3:8). Why? Paul and Moses, as well as you and I, have access to the “the riches of Christ” (Colossians 1:27), and the “treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3), leaving no comparison between being in Christ and life without him. Moses chose to place the rest of his life and future in Christ who was to him the prophesied spiritual rock who would follow, and with whose knowledge would strengthen him as well as Israel, as they were assured of a much better life. By believing-faith, Moses chose temporal hardships rather than to have the fleeting enjoyment of a sinful life in order to receive “a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory” (II Corinthians 4:17), more than Egypt could ever offer.

Exodus 3:15a:
And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you. . .

Moses had much more to go on than simply to say I AM sent me unto you, but also to inform Israel that the same God their ancestors believed in and hoped on has sent me unto you. One blissful benefit that Moses received for choosing to believe was that he spent personal time with God the Creator. As Moses enjoyed his time with the God of his life and hope, he learned from His actual voice the realties of the coming Redeemer and Moses grew to know the love of his life would indeed be his Messiah.

Today we may also experience this kind of personal relationship with the Father and with Christ Jesus in the household of God; “Beloved, now are we the sons of God” (I John 3:2). “I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty” (II Corinthians 6:17-18).

**Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE.
The Amplified New Testament copyright (c) 1958, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission.

Let Your Light so Shine (The Longer Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

One of the very first places that we Christians can inspire and bless other people is in our homes, and to recognize the spiritual light that is in one another in our own families. As an example: In my home, I am the Dad; however, my two children also know me as their brother, because God is our Father. This understanding alone has opened wonderful moments in our family’s relationship. Sometimes our conversation becomes so open and exciting that it causes me to be thrilled with complete thankfulness that we have allowed God, the light of His healing Word, and Jesus Christ into our lives.

My wife, my helper and companion is also my sister in God’s household, and this understanding has made it possible for us to become and stay the best of friends. I Peter 3:7 confirms to us that we are “heirs together of the grace of life,” in other words, we equally share in a “life of grace” ─ together, as one (Matthew 19:4-6). I would also like to point out that not every moment is like living in paradise, we are only human, and we certainly have our share of life’s trials, yet as we look to God’s Word, we always end up being more than conquerors as we let our light so shine forth for God and our Savior. Overall, I would not change anything, because we as a family have worked very hard to build our relationship with God, His Son, and with each other as we have seen the light of God’s love within each other.

One of the greatest gifts that God has ever given to men and women who believe is spiritual light. With this light, the eyes of our spiritual understanding begin opening to the life that Jesus called the more abundant life, for it is eternal life (I John 5:10-12).   Jesus Christ made this life available to us by sacrificing his own life. As we personally come to know and experience Jesus Christ who dwells in our hearts (Colossians 1:27), and who resides within every fiber of our beings (Colossians 3:4), the greater the experience of “the more abundant life” becomes. In John 10:10, Jesus said, “I am come that they {believers} might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” The word might in the Greek Text is the word for “may” and the meaning is that we have Jesus’ permission to enjoy the more abundant life. This is the very reason and purpose why Jesus Christ came in the first place, so that we may experience the abundant life, which is not just an abundant life, but ─ life ─ MORE ABUNDANTLY!

John 8:12:
Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

The light of life is the necessary spiritual light needed to enjoy life more abundantly. Now, how can we get the words of Jesus off the pages of the Bible and begin applying them in practical living? By following Jesus, who is clearly perceived throughout the Scriptures as the light of the world. In Ephesians 2:10 we read, “For we are his {God’s} workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” The word should is an interesting word (a kin to the word “may” above), because God is not demanding that we practice works of any kind, rather this is a loving request from our heavenly Father, and it is only when we decide to walk in them will we turn the light on from within.

God designed the good works from the beginning. He, being the Creator of life, has given to us the blueprint for living life in the way He designed it, and the blueprint is His Word and His Word reveals Christ, and him we are instructed to follow. He loved his fellow man and encouraged us to do the same. God’s Word contains all things that pertain to life and godliness (II Peter 1:3-4). When and where we try to apply Scripture we will experience the true life and goodness that God placed in His healing Word for us to uncover, and to discover, and to treasure, and to enjoy as we effortlessly allow our light to shine from within our hearts.

Following Jesus is one of those good works that God ordained we observe; in fact, it is a wonderful work because in doing so we will recognize that we have access into the light of life. The guidance of Scripture is always requesting that we follow Jesus Christ, for he is the way, the truth, and the life to the Father (John 14:6, Hebrews 12:1-2).

Ephesians 5:14:
Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light {so that we may first see, and then enjoy God’s good works}.

Isaiah 60:1:
Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.

When we became saved, we are spiritually awakened to a new life with (and in) Christ: this is the meaning of arise from the dead. In Matthew 5:16 Jesus said: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Jesus did not say to pray for more light, or to struggle through life trying to keep it burning. Rather he said let and the reason for this is that we already have light and we are encouraged to allow this light to shine by enjoying the good works, our proof that we have the light of life.

The Amplified Bible* translates good works from Ephesians 2:10 to read: “living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live” for living the good life with God in Christ in us is allowing our God-given light to shine. Enjoy a deLIGHTful life as you let your light so shine!

Ephesians 5:8:
For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

“People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.” ~Elizabeth Kubler-Ross~

* Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE.
The Amplified New Testament copyright (c) 1958, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission.

To God ─ You Are Poetry in Motion

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them– Ephesians 2:10. The word workmanship is the Greek word poyeema and means a thing made, a thing produced, with effort and design. Poyeema literally is in reference to us who are His masterpieces. We can literally define the word poyeema as poetry in motion, for our lives are ordained by God to live in fellowship and harmony with Him Who has given to us a spiritually revived life. ~LMJ~

Let Your Light so Shine (The Shorter Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

One of the very first places that we can inspire and bless people is in our homes, and to recognize the spiritual light that is in one other in our own families. As an example: In my house I am the dad, however my two children also know me as their brother, because God is our Father. This understanding alone has opened wonderful moments in our family’s relationship. Sometimes our conversation becomes so open and exciting that it causes me to be thrilled with complete thankfulness that we have allowed God into our lives.

My wife, my helper and companion is also my sister in God’s household, and this understanding has made it possible for us to become and stay the best of friends. Still, I would also like to point out that not every moment is like living in paradise, we are only human and we certainly have our share of ups and downs. We do not float around on clouds reading and thinking about the Scriptures at every moment because there is this thing that keeps popping up called life. Nevertheless, I still would not change anything, because overall we as a family have worked very hard to build our relationship with God and with each other.

One of the greatest gifts that God has ever given to men and women who believe is spiritual light. With this light, the eyes of our spiritual understanding begin opening to the life that Jesus called the more abundant life, for it is eternal life (I John 5:10-12). Jesus Christ made this life available to us by sacrificing his own life. As we personally come to know and experience Jesus Christ who dwells in our hearts (Colossians 1:27), and who resides within every fiber of our beings (Colossians 3:4), the greater the experience of “the more abundant life” becomes. John 10:10 says “I am come that they {believers} might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” The word “might” in the Greek Text is the word for “may” and the meaning is that we have Jesus’ permission to enjoy the more abundant life. This is the very reason and purpose why Jesus Christ came in the first place, so that we may experience the abundant life, which is not just an abundant life, but – life – MORE ABUNDANTLY!

John 8:12 – Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

“The light of life” is the necessary spiritual light needed to enjoy life more abundantly. How do we get the words of Jesus off the pages of the Bible, and begin applying them in practical living? In Ephesians 2:10 we read, “For we are his {God’s} workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” The word “should” is an interesting word because God is not demanding that we practice works of any kind, rather this is a loving request from our heavenly Father. God designed the “good works” from the beginning. He, being the Creator of life, has given to us the blueprint for living life in the way He designed it, and the blueprint is His Word. His Word contains all things that pertain to life and godliness (II Peter 1:3-4). When and where we try to apply Scripture we will experience the true goodness that God placed in His healing Word. Following Jesus for instance is one of those good works; in fact, it is a wonderful work because in doing so we will recognize that we have access into “the light of life.” The guidance of Scripture is always requesting that we follow Jesus Christ, for he is the way, the truth, and the life to the Father (John 14:6, Hebrews 12:1-2).

Ephesians 5:14 – Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light (see, Isaiah 60:1).

When we became saved, we are spiritually awakened to a new life with Christ: this is the meaning of “arise from the dead.” In Matthew 5:16 Jesus said: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”  Jesus did not say to pray for more light, or to struggle through life trying to keep it burning. Rather he said “let” and the reason for this is that we already have light and we are encouraged to allow this light to shine by enjoying the “good works” which shows us that we have the “light of life.” (The Amplified Bible translates “good works” to say: [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].)