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

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.

The Daily Inspiration of Jesus Christ (The Shorter Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

This is a study revealing how we Christians can allow the principles of the master teacher into our daily lives so that his teachings become our daily thoughts, and his inspiration becomes our rescue in times of need. Following is an example from the Gospel of Luke showing how Peter learned to allow the daily inspiration of Jesus Christ into his heart, giving us a vivid example of how we can allow the written Word to nourish and strengthen our souls.

Luke 5:4 – Now when he {Jesus} had left speaking {the Word of God}, he said unto Simon {Peter}, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught.

Jesus had been sitting in a fishing boat and teaching the Word of God to a multitude of people. There were so many people that Jesus went out a little way from the shore where the acoustical sound over the lake must have carried his voice quite well as he expounded divine truths. Then after Jesus had finished teaching he asked Peter to launch out further and let down his nets so they could haul in a load of fish. We will see how Peter recognized Jesus as a teacher during the meeting, yet when the meeting was over Peter left his teaching and inspiration behind, and let us see the result.

Luke 5:5 – And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.

Peter told Jesus that the previous night’s fishing expedition was a waste of time and grudgingly Peter said, “nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.” When Jesus spoke to Peter he was speaking the Word of God to him (John 14:23-24; 15:15), but Peter felt that he was the expert when it came to fishing, after all it was “only” a carpenter who told him what to do. Notice what Peter did? Jesus said, “let down your nets {plural}” but what did Peter do? He let down a net (singular). Peter had the opportunity to take Jesus Christ with him to work. Can you imagine? Today in God’s grace we have Christ within, and he does reveal God to our minds whenever and wherever we allow.

Luke 5:6-7:
-6: And when they had this done {the letting down of the net}, they enclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net break {because they did not use their “nets”}.
-7: And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink.

Proverbs 3:6 comes to mind: “In all thy ways acknowledge him {God} and he shall direct thy paths.” No matter what we do for a living, or where we are at any moment, we can carry God’s healing Word and its inspiration with us to become successful. Jesus Christ reveals God to our hearts, and as we allow Jesus into our daily lives, the greater he reveals his Father and His power.

Luke 5:8-10:
-8: When Simon Peter saw it {recognized that Jesus was right}, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.
-9: For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken:
-10: And so was also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; henceforth thou shalt catch men.

Peter immediately knew that he was wrong, he knew that even with Jesus in his boat, he did not allow the words of his inspiration into his life. Peter, to his credit, realized that he was just a man, one that was not perfect, and like any other, “a sinful man.” Jesus, to his praise, did not condemn Peter (or throw him out of the boat), but rather encouraged him that he most definitely would have better days, more opportunity to believe the Word that Jesus would continue revealing to him. “Fear not” because we are dearly loved by God and by His Son Jesus Christ.

So today, as we continue living our lives to the best of our ability, let us continue walking with the Savior and allow him and his inspiration into our lives, and watch God work miraculous things for us. When we place the Savior’s words of comfort in our minds, they can inspire us to be the best in our relationships, in our workplaces, and in our life’s endeavors. When we allow the master teacher into our hearts – his words will become our thoughts (our inner consciences) and his inspiration will be with us in our time of need.

Walking With Our Lord Jesus Christ

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Matthew 14:28-32:
-28:  And Peter answered him {Jesus} and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
-29:  And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
-30:  But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
-31:  And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?
-32:  And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased.

For the Apostle Peter, walking on the water with Jesus took a tremendous amount of courage and believing. In order for Peter to do this, he had to trust that this was available to do, and when Jesus said come, he came, but as Peter “came to his senses” he began to sink. When Peter took his eyes off Jesus – he fell into trouble. When Peter began looking around at the circumstances of life (that are always around), two things began to happen; one was that he saw the storm and simultaneously he forgot the promise (the Word) that Jesus gave him.

Secondly, the storm induced fear into his life.  Doubt, worry, and fear will defeat the promises that God’s healing Word reveals to us through Christ as we walk with him.

Two things that also need to be mentioned here is that Peter did not completely sink, he only began to sink.

Secondly, his Savior reached out to help him. The same lifeline is promised and given to us when we look to our Savior, to Jesus Christ, as we walk with him. In Hebrews 7:25 we read: “Wherefore he {Jesus Christ} is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.”

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 lesson here is that when and where we follow Jesus through the revealed Word of God, then we will be walking with him just as Peter had done that day on the sea. True – we will fall from time to time as we look at the circumstances around us, yet as Jesus reached out for Peter, Jesus can also pull us up and out of any worldly negative circumstances.

The Bible says that if we do not faint we will reap (Galatians 6:9). In other words, as we continue looking to our Savior, even when the circumstances around us seem bigger than our abilities, Jesus will come to our rescue. Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life to the Father (John 14:6), because Jesus Christ is the mediator between God and man (I Timothy 2:5).

In Hebrews 13:8 we read: “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever.” The mission of Jesus Christ has never changed; he will literally run to our aid when we are living through life’s challenges since we can accept him into our lives and look to his strength.

Philippians 4:13:
I {you} can do all things {promised in God’s Word} through Christ which strengtheneth me {through Christ who infuses us with his strength}.

Not only do we have the God-given right and permission to be more than conquerors (Romans 8:37), and triumph over life’s negative happenstance, but as we continue walking with Jesus Christ through an understanding of the Scriptures and by way of his daily inspiration, God will continue giving us daily victories “through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

My God Shall Supply

“Every person has different circumstances and daily needs, but God can and does care for each of us individually. But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus– Philippians 4:19. God promises in His Word that He will meet our every need, but seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things {that we need to sustain life — mentally, physically, and spiritually} shall be added unto you– Matthew 6:33. The true blessings of God come to us according to our believing His Word. By looking to God’s healing Word, and by prayer offered in the name of Jesus Christ, and with genuine thankfulness from the heart, we may also look for and expect that our God will be there for us with daily blessings, and we can in thankfulness recognize that His blessings are real.” ~LMJ~