Touchdown (The Shorter Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

John 3:16 is a verse of Scripture that we often see behind the goalpost at football games and other sporting events. I wanted to title this Bible byte “Touchdown” because John 3:16 is quite possibly the greatest event that has ever happened to (or for) the world.

John 3:16 – For God so loved the world {i.e., the people in the world}, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Our goal is heaven and our final destiny is to be with God, enjoying our everlasting life! God has given eternal life to humanity who believe in the completed work of His son, Jesus Christ who died for our sins and made eternity a reality for us.

John 3:17 – For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him {through the accomplishments and completed work of Jesus Christ} might be saved.

God, in love, gave His son because His son, by his own free will, was not only willing to give his life for you and for me, but he indeed did give his life for you and for me. It was Jesus himself who spoke the verses above because he knew that it would take the love of God in himself to accomplish the task before him.

I John 4:10-12:
-10:  Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation {the full payment} for our sins.
-11:  Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.
-12:  No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

Jesus willingly gave himself for our sins. We currently also have the same love of God that Jesus Christ originally had when he gave himself for us. With this love applied in our lives, given to us by God (Romans 5:5), we can be assured of knowing and realizing that God Himself dwells in us. As we walk in the abundance of God’s love, we will literally show others the same love with which “God so loved the world.”

Being Born Again

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

 I Peter 1:23: Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible {seed}, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever.

When the Scriptures say that believers are born again, then we may believe this truth because the Word of God liveth and abideth forever. In the beginning was the Word (John 1:1), and the Word of God is still here and always will be. Since God’s Word claims that we are born again, then that is the truth and something we may put on in our thinking processes as we renew our minds by thinking with this spiritual perspective that we are born again.

Nicodemus once questioned Jesus about these same truths of being born again and this is recorded for us in the Gospel of John chapter 3. “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). But Nicodemus could not comprehend the concept of being born again, thus Jesus said to him, “If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things” (John 3:12)?

Jesus was somewhat disappointed that Nicodemus did not understand the Word of God and said to him, “Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things” (John 3:10)? Nicodemus was a master (teacher) of the Scriptures, yet he really did not have a clue about the subject of being born again and everlasting life when speaking to Jesus who is the resurrection (see John 11:25). Jesus was in essence saying to him, “Man, how can you call yourself a Teacher and a Man of the Cloth (so-to-speak), if you do not understand even foundational truths regarding your future life!”

John 3:14–17:
-14: {Jesus is still talking to Nicodemus} And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
-15: That whosoever {this includes Nicodemus, you, and me} believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
-16: For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
-17: For God sent not {sent NOT} his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

When we were born, we became the progeny of our mother and father; we can never change that fact. (The miracle of our birth is not that man created anything, but rather the God-given abilities that the Creator gave humanity were employed.) Oh, I know some parents would like to disown their children and vice versa; however, by virtue of birth we are the children of our parents. It is the same with God ― once we are saved (born again) we are children of our heavenly Father. We become born again, but not of corruptible seed, as is our first birth, which is corruptible because of the sin nature inlaid in man since the fall of man in Genesis (Romans 5:12). However, God’s seed is incorruptible and eternal. He is our heavenly Father for all eternity!

Galatians 3:16: Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He {God} saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy {or your} seed, which is Christ.

When we become born again, we have the spiritual seed of Christ in us, and having Christ is having eternal life (I John 5:11-13). We are, according to the Scriptures, members of the body of Christ (I Corinthians 12:27) because we have received the seed of Christ. Romans 12:5 says, “So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another,” because we are born again of incorruptible seed, and are now permanently members of God’s Family. Having this wonderful gift within gives us an everlasting standing in the household of God as His very own children (Ephesians 2:19-22), and this can never change. In the Old Testament, yes, the believers could lose their standing in God’s care, but today in grace because of the completed work of Jesus Christ on our behalf (I Peter 1:18-19), we are the children of God now and throughout all eternity.

Colossians 1:27: To whom God would make known {to you and I} what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

The mystery is literally that the Jews and Gentiles who do become saved belong to God, and they become permanent members in the body of Christ (Ephesians 3:1-7). The foundation of this mystery is Christ; and we having everything Christ has ― his love, his peace, and his eternal life ― and we can know and enjoy the spirit of Christ in our hearts (Romans 8:9-17). The riches of this mystery are Christ in you, the hope of glory, to literally be with Christ in his glory for all eternity.

II Thessalonians 2:14: Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

II Timothy 2:10: Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.

Having Christ in you and obtaining his glory are biblical testimonies, but learning how to enjoy these spiritual truths takes the renewing of our minds to what the Scriptures teach. The renewed mind is a dynamic study within the Scriptures that show and teach the children of God how to become ever more Christ-like in daily living. The first step to having and enjoying a renewed mind in this day and age of grace is to become born again, and Romans 10:9 and 10 explicitly puts the process into plain words about how to become saved, receive salvation, and be born again.

Romans 10:9–10:
-9: That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
-10: For with the heart man believeth unto {God’s own} righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto {your own} salvation.

The renewed mind process is one of the most enjoyable and exciting treasures we could ever receive, because having the renewed mind is having God’s best for us; we literally start to enjoy the spiritual qualities of Jesus Christ. Romans 10:11 continues, “For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.” The words shall not be ashamed means to be totally exempt from condemnation and despair because when we have the renewed mind, as promised we will know for certain that we are born again and we can know the certainty that we are going to heaven. We will never need to question or doubt in our eternal destiny again, as Nicodemus had, because our eternal life will become an apparent, present-tense reality in our hearts.

In order to enjoy God’s blessings upon our lives we first believe and confess in Romans 10:9-10 and we become born again and are members of God’s family, able to receive biblical truths that are inspiring and renewing and comforting in our new fellowship and journey together.

II Corinthians 6:2: For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.

Ephesians 1:13: In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise.

I Thessalonians 5:9: For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ.

Amos – Revealing Our Salvation

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

The Book of Amos reveals Jesus Christ as the Raiser of David’s tabernacle that was rejected by Israel in Zion. David’s tabernacle is where the Ark of the Covenant was, and the covenant represented the presence of God. Jesus Christ’s very life was the complete embodiment of everything that David’s tabernacle symbolized.

The raising of the tabernacle represents the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and through the resurrection of Christ, salvation is granted to those who would believe (Amos 9:11, Acts 15:15-17).

Amos 5:14 – Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken.

“As ye have spoken” represents the fact that they were saying that God was with them, yet they had rejected Him, and so God was not literally with them as they were saying. Amos was exhorting them to again “seek good, and not evil” and the reason for seeking good was so they “may live.”

The word “live” represents life eternal, not merely physical life (that, they already had), but eternal life (salvation) was promised to them if they would seek good. To “seek good” is to seek God, and when God is sought out and recognized, it is because He is made known through Jesus Christ, and without Christ, God is simply an enigma. This is why people refer to God as “the man upstairs,” or “the spirit in the sky,” rather than truly recognizing Him as our heavenly Father Who indeed blesses those who truly seek Him through Jesus Christ, for he is the way, the truth, and the life to the Father (John 14:5-7).

I John 5:11-12:
-11: And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
-12: He that hath the Son hath life {eternal life}; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

The question then arises: “Do we have the Son of God?” The Son of God is Jesus Christ, and salvation is acquired through his name and no other (Acts 4:10-12).

When we receive our salvation, it is because we have received the Son of God, believing in the record that God’s Word says of Jesus that he indeed did come, that he indeed did die for us, and that he indeed did become resurrected by God to become our Lord and Savior (Romans 10:9-10).

In the verse, “Knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance” (Romans 2:4), the word “repentance” means our salvation, for salvation is ours through the goodness of God, and Jesus Christ is the epitome of the goodness of God, “for God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

Romans 1:16-17:
-16: For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek {the Gentile}.
-17: For therein {our salvation} is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

Amos encouraged them to “seek good” {rather than reject good), that they may live with the assurance of having eternal life.

Today in God’s grace, we who seek the goodness of God through our acceptance of Jesus Christ receive salvation, and with Christ we may partake and enjoy his spiritual life (Colossians 3:4). “I {Jesus} am come that they {believers} might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).

The reason that we can enjoy the more abundant life is because we have received Our Salvation, for we have found him who is the goodness of God.