Our God-Given Righteousness Is Accompanied with an Abundance of Grace

“Quite often laws are disguised as fear and rituals that make us feel inadequate and unworthy to accept God’s grace and blessings. When we feel this way, something is most definitely amiss because God loves us just as we are. All we can really do in grace is to accept God’s love and learn to enjoy our lives with the Father in the abundance that His Word reveals. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain– Galatians 2:21. When anyone continues practicing and trying to obey the Law, God’s divine grace will become totally nullified in their life. The word frustrate means to reject, and this is what people actually do to the grace of God when trying to practice laws that we think will make us acceptable to God. Galatians further states that then Christ is dead in vain. The reason the Bible says is dead rather than has died is because the accomplishments of Christ are as good as dead to the individual who is trying to earn their already God-given righteousness accompanied with His abundance of grace.” ~LMJ~

Allow Me to Introduce You to the Rest of the Story…

“God becomes personally introduced to the searching heart as one comes directly face to face with His Word and finds His Son Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth, and the lifeline to Him (John 14:6). Jesus is the subject of the Bible and thus he is the Golden Thread within all Holy Writ, and it is through him that one begins to clearly see the light.

We did not climb up into God’s grace by our own labors, but we received grace to be with Him because of the generous work of Christ. God called, God gave, God blessed, and we believed and gratefully received (end of story).” ~LMJ~

The Crown Incorruptible

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

II Kings 11:12a – And he brought forth the king’s son {Joash} and put the crown upon him, and gave him the testimony; and they made him king, and anointed him; . . .

At Joash’s coronation as king, he received first his crown, secondly they gave to him the testimony, which was the Word of God; this was to be his standard and rule of practice in ruling his kingdom. They also anointed him.  The anointing set him apart as the king and established him as God’s servant and leader for the people.

Today in God’s grace we, His children, believe in the future crowns that we may receive from God when Christ returns for us. We are anointed today with holy spirit by God Himself (II Corinthians 1:21-22), and we have God’s Word as our standard to believe in and enjoy as we serve one another with the love of God. With God’s Word we can discover His guidelines on how to receive the crowns that will be given to believers who live in God’s love and grace.

II Timothy 2:5 – And if a man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully.

“Strive for the masteries” literally means to contend or compete in the games.  These games were common to the believers in the first century and were known as the Olympic games. Paul is teaching that when we look forward to the spiritual goal of Christ returning for us, that we must compete lawfully by the rules. The rules are recorded in God’s Word. We are saved for eternity, yet there is more to be received if we follow the guidelines recorded in Scripture, and the underlying principle to everything recorded in God’s Word is always to walk in love.

As we apply and enjoy God’s love we will literally stay in bounds.  When Christ does return, we will indeed receive the prize and be crowned, “I press toward the mark {the finish line} for the prize {the crown} of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14).

Each believer can receive the crowns now offered by God, the crown incorruptible is eternal, and will be “reserved in heaven” (I Peter 1:4).

I Corinthians 9:24-26:
-24: Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but {only} one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
-25: And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they {in a physical race} do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we {in a spiritual race} an incorruptible {crown}
-26: I therefore so run, not as uncertainly {because we know that we can win}; so fight {box} I, not as one that beateth the air {one who shadowboxes}:

Noting that God uses so many metaphors of competition about receiving our crowns is interesting. In a physical race one must stay in bounds, and one must be “temperate in all things.” Temperate means to have self-control in all things. In the Greek Olympics only one received the prize and only one received a crown of olive leaves, but in God’s Word all believers who strive to follow His healing Word will receive the “crown incorruptible.”

The crown incorruptible is for believers who practice self-control over life’s circumstances and walk within the bounds of God’s wonderful Word. Whenever we walk (conduct our lives) according to Scripture, then, we are more than conquerors. When we walk in love and believe the Scriptures we are literally hitting the mark rather than simply shadowboxing against the forces of evil.

Hebrews 12:1-2a
-1: Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses {recorded examples of believers who believe in Hebrews chapter 11}, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us {that can knock us out of bounds}, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
-2a: Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; . . .

When we keep our eyes on the goal of the coming of Christ Jesus and look to him through the Scriptures we can “run with patience the race that is set before us.”

Running with patience is like getting a second wind (an ease) which believers receive as they continue “striving lawfully.”

Then at the finish line we will receive the crown incorruptible for having patience and self-control in our own lives. Jesus as our “author and finisher of our faith” has already won, we only need to follow his lead by living in the love of God to achieve and receive the crown incorruptible.

To be continued in The Crown of Glory

Easy to Know, to Live, and to Enjoy

“Sometimes Christianity can become confusing when external tagalongs fasten themselves to the believer’s walk. There are many things that appear to be a part of the Church of God yet only hinder the believer from walking in the light of God’s Word. For instance: Have you ever been told the Bible says that you have to do this, or you need to do this? However, the Epistles never say thou shalt, or thou shalt not, regarding laws or commandments, rather the Epistles give the believers almost unimaginable freedom by offering to give us whatever we need to enjoy our eternal lives with God in Christ which has already begun in our lives. Anything and everything that the Epistles reveal to the believers is offered by God’s grace, and it is literally God’s love that activates our believing to receive from God. God never made the Christian lifestyle to be burdensome but rather easy to know, to live, and to enjoy.” ~LMJ~

The Veil Shall Be Taken Away

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

When we begin to believe and comprehend the Word written to us in the New Testament Scriptures, God begins to reveal vast amounts of spiritual wisdom. Then, the eyes of our own understanding will begin to be enlightened (Ephesians 1:18), as we become spiritually lit up from the inside, out. One major reason that people say that they cannot understand the Epistles is simply because they approach the Word in the same way that they would perhaps study a history book or a good novel, totally missing out on the reality that it is God Who enlightens our lives with spiritual revelations of knowledge, understanding, and wisdom. Today we literally learn the spiritual truths within the Scriptures proportionally to our believing in God.  We cannot fool, or trick Him into giving us spiritual understanding without our hearts being genuinely drawn towards Him.

James 4:8a – Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you . . .

In II Corinthians 3:14b we read that “. . . for until this day remaineth the same veil untaken away in the reading of the old testament; . . .” The Old Testament was not written to the spiritual heart, but to the five senses mind. The Old Testament was written to give knowledge and direction mostly to the children of Israel, with commandments and laws. Oh yes, we can learn so very many things from the Old Testament Scriptures (Romans 15:4), but today the Church of God has been called into God’s grace and liberty instead of the Law and works that are described in detail throughout the Old Testament. When we try to get our daily guidance from the Old Testament there will remain a veil obstructing the spiritual view of freedom that comes with Christ in the New Testament “. . . which vail is done away in Christ . . .” (II Corinthians 3:14). Definitely the Old Testament contains hundreds and thousands of biblical principles from which we may learn, but our daily guidance comes from knowing the Epistles and the inspiration of (and from) the spirit within our hearts.

II Corinthians 3:15-16:
-15:  But even unto this day, when Moses is read {from the Old Testament Scriptures}, the vail is {still} upon their heart.
-16:  Nevertheless when it {the heart} shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away.

When the heart turns to the Lord the veil shall be taken away, and life with God begins to take on a much greater reality, enhancing our very lives with freedom that only God can provide. This certainly does not take anything away from the Old Testament but does put the Old Testament into the godly perspective, order, and design in which it was meant to be understood by the believers of today who are turning their hearts to the Lord God.

II Corinthians 3:17 – Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

As we continue turning toward the Lord (in our words and deeds) we will discover His genuine deliverance in the Scriptures of the New Testament. Then, our hearts will continue to be blessed by Him Who created all things and Who opens our eyes that we may see – God bless you!