Thanks Be to God

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

When people make mistakes, the temptation is usually to belittle those who have fallen in one way or another. As we study Corinthians it becomes obvious that they missed the boat on many Christian principles, and in the midst of this anybody could teach about the bad, show the sin, preach the condemnation, and deliver the hellfire. However, God is love and with His love as our motivation and for our foundation: we always want to teach or be taught the good, to show or be shown the Savior from sin, to preach or to hear about our righteousness, and to deliver and receive the eternal blessings recorded for us in God’s Word.  This is exactly what Corinthians teaches because the positive light of God’s healing Word will always win over negative darkness.

I Corinthians 15:57:
But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

This wonderful verse of Scripture is an actual prayer, with a beginning in thankfulness, the middle with the acknowledgment of what God has given to us – the victory, and this victory is our eternal life. Then the prayer ends by thanking God in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, just as Jesus instructed us to do in our personal prayer life (John 14:13-14). This prayer has raised the Church of believers from being emaciated and downtrodden back up to the standard of God’s Word, rather than condemning us into some kind of pseudo-religious obedience. Corinthians has set us on high, from the state of being failures to becoming thankful in the victory; this is how God strengthens His very own children. Isn’t this a magnificent way to learn how to walk with God within the confidence that His Word generates?

The Church in Corinth as a whole was not criticized but loved back to spiritual health, and encouraged back into remembering the victory, knowing that they still indeed had eternal life within the very fiber of their being. Thankfulness is not only the response of the Church at Corinth, but will always be the response when love is the motivation behind helping people walk with God. Let us read why Paul wrote II Corinthians:

II Corinthians 2:4:
For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you.

Coming to know Jesus Christ is an adventure in this life that takes place in the depths of our hearts. The mission of Christ has always been and will always be to make God known. Christ continues to make God known to us, and as our knowledge of God increases we will clearly begin to recognize the actual victory of obtaining our eternal life with complete thankfulness. This is the victory that enables us to say “thanks be to God” from the depths of our hearts.

God’s Wish

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

III John 2:
Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.

III John 2 is God’s wish; His wish above anything else is that we may prosper and be in health. The word “wish” literally means prayer. Noting that God actually prays for our well-being is interesting because usually we think of prayer as a one-way street, from man to God. However, III John 2 sheds light that God actually prays for us, and His prayer is His own believing. God not only prays but He also shows us in His Word many wonderful details on how to raise our believing so that He may fulfil His prayer.

Deuteronomy 8:18a:
But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth. . .

Not only does God give us power to get wealth but He also gives us “power” to enjoy wealth when we receive it. Often people with wealth are so busy acquiring and stockpiling it that they never seem to enjoy it; however, God’s will for us is to enjoy our lives with all that He gives.

Ecclesiastes 5:19:
Every man also to whom God hath given riches and wealth, and hath given him power to eat thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour; this is the gift of God.

This gift does not necessarily mean that God will cause you to be rich beyond your wildest dreams, but that He wants you to have enough to enjoy the more abundant life (John 10:10a). In III John 2 the word “prosper” means to have a prosperous journey (Romans 1:10). In this journey that we are on in this life (on our way to heaven), God is willing and able to supply our every need (Romans 4:21; Philippians 4:19). In Psalms 103:3 we read, “. . . who {God} healeth all thy diseases”; we have the God-given right to believe in and claim our health “in the name of Jesus Christ” (Matthew 8:17; John 14:13-14), and there is nothing more valuable or enriching in this life than mental, physical, and spiritual health. Jesus Christ actually gave his own life to help raise our believing for health.

I Peter 2:24:
Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

In III John 2 the words “even as thy soul prospereth” represents your actual life (your soul), and soul means, “breath life,” that which makes you – you. The soul is the inner consciousness where one reasons and processes information. “Prospereth,” means the journey you are on, and when God’s Word begins to have place in your thinking and reasoning, then you will become ever more in tune to God’s prayer.

The Word of God effectually works (I Thessalonians 2:13) as you continue believing with God from your heart to receive His bountiful goodness and blessings upon your life.