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“Jesus Christ is God’s ultimate gift to the world; everlasting life is your ultimate prize for believing in God’s only begotten Son (John 3:16)!” ~LMJ~

The Crown of Rejoicing

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

The crown of rejoicing is by far the greatest crown in the sense that we may partake of the joy in the here and now. The crown of rejoicing that we can receive when Christ returns is given to us for winning lost souls to the Lord Jesus Christ. Whenever someone whom we have witnessed to becomes saved, the joy that we will experience can at times become so overwhelming that we almost feel that we need to ask God to cool it down some because our hearts can bubble over with inner spiritual joy.

It is so exciting and thrilling to our hearts whenever someone actually believes the words that come from out of our hearts and mouths regarding the wonderful healing Word and will of God.

This wonderful action of speaking up causes us to become so thankful that we ourselves have received our own personal salvation, and we experience the same thrills that the people we witness to experience when they finally believe themselves in the Word that works effectually in anyone who believes.

I Thessalonians 2:13 – For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye receive it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that {do one thing and one thing only:} believe.

When we simply accept the Scriptures as the actual Word of God, and we believe them, then the Word begins working effectually within our lives. When we share this wonderful Word of God that we believe to someone else and they believe, then the Word will work equally as well for them.

This, my friend, is what brings so much joy into our lives, not to mention the crown of rejoicing that will be given to us when Christ returns. There are no requirements as to how many people we can share God’s Word with, even if we simply introduced one person to Christ in our life we will receive the crown of rejoicing.

I Thessalonians 2:19-20:
-19: For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming? {The people Paul witnessed to who believed him will also be brought into “the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming.”}
-20: For ye are our glory and joy.

Over the years God has been presented to people in a most negative way. Some people threaten the unsaved with the supposed wrath of God, preaching hellfire and condemnation to bring others to the point of accepting Christ. This is totally wrong and shameful to share God’s Word in this manner because God is love!

I Peter 4:10-11:
-10: As every man {believer} hath received the gift {of salvation}, even so minister the same {gift} one to another, as good stewards of the manifold {abundantly diverse and ever growing} grace of God,
-11: If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God {utterances and declarations of God’s manifold grace}; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever.

When we present God in the favorable light of His healing Word, then we are truly striving according to the rule book of life. No good thing will God withhold from us who share of His salvation and grace, and in return we can know in our hearts that the people we bring to the Lord will cause our hearts to rejoice with “glory and joy!”

Philippians 3:20-21; 4:1:
-20: For our conversation {our citizenship is the Text} is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ;
-21: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious {and resurrected} body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things {he is able to bring all those who believe} unto himself.
-1: Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved.

When Christ returns for us we will enjoy the privilege of being the sons and daughters of God who live in the heavenlies with Christ. We shall receive glorious new bodies and we will enjoy our heavenly citizenship with those whom we have rescued from this world.

When that glorious day comes we can receive the crown of rejoicing for being faithful witnesses and stewards of the manifold grace of God.

To be continued in Many Crowns

The Crown of Glory

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

I Peter 5:1-5:
-1: The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
-2: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre {dishonorable gain}, but of a ready mind.
-3: Neither as being Lord’s over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.
-4: And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
-5: Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.

These verses are discussing the requirements for receiving the “crown of glory,” when Christ Jesus, the chief Shepherd appears we can receive this glorious crown.

Verses 1-3 are encouraging the leaders (elders) in the Church of God to fulfil their commitment to be leaders who genuinely watch over God’s heritage, which is not only their own children, but all of God’s children who are saved. God’s Word is instructing leaders in the Church to be examples to the rest of the believers.

Years ago I heard it taught that the crown of glory was specifically going to be given only to the elders who were faithful. However, if we were to continue reading down to verse 5, a different truth surfaces altogether than if we extract only the first 4 verses above.  The word “Likewise” literally means the same also goes for ─ you, and in the conText above this refers to the “younger.” A newly saved believer can also receive the same crown of glory that leadership can receive, if they submit themselves unto the elder.

“Yea, all of you be subject one to another” the inspiration is for leaders and believers to be subject one to another. Our God is not a respecter of persons (Acts 10:34), and as far as the crowns are concerned, each believer may receive all five of these.

The crown of glory is available to each and every one of us, so long as we are being respectful to each other.

In a leadership position, a leader can give his utmost respect to those whom God has called into His family, to watch over with prayer and believing, giving guidance and direction that leads them to Christ and into the ways of God.

If we just became saved today and we look to our leaders respectfully, then we, too, can receive the crown of glory. But if we spend our days down here rejecting our leaders or ignoring other believers when we know better, then the crown of glory may not be given when the chief Shepherd appears.

The purpose for the verses above is so that God’s children as a whole Church can work together in this life in harmony. “Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God” (Ephesians 5:21); “the fear of God” means respect, awe, and appreciation, rather than meaning to be afraid of God. We are to have the same respect and appreciation for other believers that we have for God (see I John 4:20-21).

“As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10). Yet these days do believers care for one another? do we respect Christians from different churches or denominations? God had so much wisdom in showing us what is required for receiving the crown of glory.

Colossians 3:23-24:
-23: And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily {with all our being from the heart}, as to the Lord, and not unto men;
-24: Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.

When we give to others as though we were giving to the Lord, then the “reward of the inheritance” shall indeed be given to us. When the believers’ focus is on blessing each other, then they truly display the wisdom of God, being wise children in the Lord. “The wise shall inherit glory” (Proverbs 3:35), and for believers in grace they will inherit the crown of glory. “Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us {up} to the glory of God” (Romans 15:7).

When believers are respectful to each other, they will literally be following in the steps of our Lord and Savior, who is our greatest example in this life of giving of himself for others. Jesus has already (spiritually) received us up to the glory of God, therefore we can also respectfully receive other believers in the glory of God, as Christ Jesus has already done for each and every one of us as we anticipate in godly service the crown of glory.

To be continued in The Crown of Life

Jesus Said, I Am The Way. . .

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Psalms 119:33 – Teach me, O LORD, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end.

As the Psalmist (David) looked to his Redeemer, he was able to ask God to teach him the way of His statutes; today we also know Jesus Christ who is the perfect way to the Father. The Psalmist first said “teach me, O LORD,” and without God’s instruction, without the teachings of God’s Word, one would wonder aimlessly.  Whenever a believer comes to God’s healing Word with a heart to learn, great things will begin to happen in his or her life because when we receive instruction from the Word with a believing heart: that the Word emanates from God, then the lessons that God teaches us will never be forgotten.

“Teach me” means to show, to cause one to spiritually see, to point out divine revelations of grace. When we look to God’s Word with an expecting heart, then we will see the “statutes” of God’s true and faithful Word, which in turn reveals to us spiritual realities of God Himself.  God shows us the “way,” giving us spiritual inspiration (in-spirit-action), and direction. Then the Psalmist said “I shall keep it unto the end,” he will keep God’s Word for eternity, not simply until the end of his life because God’s Word lives and abides forever! As Jesus Christ “loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end” (John 13:1). The meaning here is that Jesus loved us beyond his death, he will continue loving us throughout eternity because he was resurrected, and he continues loving us today and forever.

Psalms 18:30 reads, “As for God, his way is perfect.” Men may think that God’s way and His Word are full of imperfections; however, in the eyes of God, as we are taught His Word, and when we believe to live the way that is called “perfect,” then God begins revealing the realities of Himself to our minds. This is what is important to us who believe ─ who gives a hoot what unbelievers think? We can live it up with our heavenly Father in the way that is perfect rather than to worry what the neighbors might think about our enjoying and living in the way God teaches us.

Psalms 18:32 It is God that girdeth me {and you} with strength, and maketh my way perfect.

Matthew 5:6 – Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

Our heavenly Father is able to uplift our lives with His strength, and cause our ways to be perfect. Wow, praise God for His Word with thankfulness for receiving His divine teachings, and for him who is the way to the Father, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ who let us know: “I am the way . . . no man cometh unto the Father, but by {through} me” (John 14:6).

Have you ever had a question about life or about God? Then one day as you were perhaps reading the Bible, or thinking about something spiritual, then all of a sudden your question became answered! Once we receive an answer from God through His inspiration, then that hunger for the answer becomes eternally filled. Oh yes, God will continue giving understanding to life’s questions in specific areas of life, and God can and will continue inspiring us ─ these become truly precious moments of serenity and completeness that only God through Christ gives to us. This is what Jesus was referring to when speaking to the woman at the well in John chapter 4:

John 4:14 – But whosoever drinketh of the water {the word “water” is a reference referring to the Word of God} that I shall give him shall never thirst; but {because} the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

Looking Unto Jesus (The Shorter Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Hebrews 12:1 – WHEREFORE seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

The “great cloud of witnesses” are the Old Testament believers talked about in Hebrews chapter 11. The witness of these believers was their faith, their positive believing faith in the coming of Jesus Christ that even today can be seen throughout the Bible. When studying the life of David for instance, we can see how he looked forward to the coming of his Redeemer, his Lord and Savior. We can discover the struggle he had against his sin nature to walk uprightly before his God and his human weakness in being just a man who tried to walk with God to the best of his abilities. We can see how David failed when he did not look to Jesus, but more important is that we can see him succeed whenever he believed God’s Word. These believers from the Old Testament were witnesses leaving us vivid examples of how to look to Jesus as they themselves did. “The race that is set before us” is to look to the finish line, it is to look to Jesus, for in him and with him is our continued access to God our heavenly Father, His grace, and His praise.

Hebrews 12:2 – Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is {now} set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

The Amplified Bible* reads Hebrews 12:2 as: “Looking away [from all that will distract] to Jesus, Who is the Leader and the Source of our faith [giving the first incentive for our belief] and is also its {believing faith’s} Finisher [bringing it to maturity and perfection]. He, for the joy [of obtaining the prize] that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising and ignoring the shame, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” Today we can look to Jesus Christ and rely on his faith, his believing faith and receive his assurance that he is for us the author and finisher of our own believing faith. The word “author” means princely leader, the first and foremost. The word “finisher” means to bring to full maturity, to the complete end. Thus, the author and finisher of our believing faith is Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is first and the last, the alpha and omega, the author and giver of our desire to have his believing faith in our lives; he is the first and the last, completing and perfecting our own believing faith. This is what we may expect to receive by “looking unto Jesus” rather than looking to our own abilities or our own strength.

Acts 4:11-12:
-11:  This {Jesus Christ} is the stone which was set at nought {rejected} of you builders, which is become the head of the corner {of the spiritual Church and family of God Himself}.
-12:  Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Today we have the blessed privilege to accept within our own heart the believing faith of Jesus Christ, who has been completely perfected in us through his believing actions that he took to his cross for us. We can believe on him and rely on his strength, as we continue “looking unto Jesus” throughout the revealed Word and will of God. When we look to Jesus, we will find the true spiritual presence and presents that God gives; this is the daily joy that He now sets before us.

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