The Creator’s Masterpiece (The Longer Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Before our salvation, we were living our lives in the very nature of sin that was implanted in man since the fall in Genesis (Romans 5:8-12), for without God and the redeeming work of Jesus Christ, there is no everlasting forgiveness. Thus, humanity lived in a state that the Bible calls being “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). But when we become saved through the work of Jesus, we are completely forgiven and are given a new life in Christ. This new life completes the Creator’s Masterpiece because our God creates Christ in us (Colossians 1:27)! When men and women accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, they become spiritually one with God’s love – in Christ – in them (John 17:11, 21-23), and members of God’s illustrious family (Ephesians 2:13-22).

Ephesians 2:1-2:
-1: AND you hath he quickened who were {once, before our salvation} dead in trespasses and {in} sins;
-2: Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:

The Epistle of Ephesians shows us that we have been quickened. This word means being made alive (spiritually) which is the opposite of being (spiritually) dead in trespasses and sins. “Even when we were dead in sins, {God} hath quickened us together with Christ” (Ephesians 2:5), giving us a life in Christ to enjoy in the present world. God has totally forgiven and cleansed us of sins and He has presented to us a new life in Christ, a life that is more than abundant; as Jesus said, “I am come that they have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).

This new life in Christ is separate from the course of this world because we have been totally released from the prince of the power of the air who is the Adversary. Without God in Christ in us, no matter what direction in which we were headed and regardless how wonderful that course may appear, it was a course of trespasses and sins when we were living our lives without God. However, after our salvation God presents to us a course that leads us to the light of His Word, a course to His right hand, a course into the righteousness of God, and a course that is quickening our very lives to be the honored children of His Holiest. This spiritual course becomes recognized through Jesus Christ, the golden thread who, when followed, will lead directly up to God and His eternal promises.

Yet for so many people, Jesus Christ is not understood outside of the confines of the four Gospels, and is the reason why so many people miss many of the reasons for man’s purpose on earth and his eternal destiny. Coming to an understanding of Jesus from the whole Word will identify him as the genuine link to the life more abundant he promised to deliver. This is the theme of our series on The Golden Thread. This is not a series on the subject of history from the Old Testament, but it IS on the subject of his‑story from the Old Testament. Jesus is the singular thread connecting both Testaments to himself, and through him we are introduced to our heavenly Father by crystal clear, present day revelations! He is our Savior right now and we can bring him off the pages of Scripture and into our everyday lives as our necessary refuge from the spiritual storms hidden along the course of this world.

Ephesians 2:10:
For we are his {God’s} workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

The word workmanship is the Greek word poyeema and means a thing made, a thing produced, with effort and design; our English word “poetry” is derived from poyeema. In Ephesians 2:10 the word poyeema literally is in reference to us being God’s masterpieces. We can literally define the word poyeema as poetry in motion, for our lives are ordained by God to live in fellowship and harmony with Him Who has given to us a spiritually revived life so that we may walk with God and experience true heavenly joy.

Romans 8:29-30:
-29: For whom he {God} did foreknow {you and me}, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son {i.e., created in Christ Jesus}, that he {Christ Jesus} might be the firstborn among many brethren.
-30: Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

The Epistle of Ephesians shows us that we are God’s new creation, created in Christ Jesus, and we are those who can live our lives not in the course of this world but in good works that God makes available to us through an understanding of His healing Word. Being God’s workmanship is a tremendous privilege, wouldn’t you agree? In Deuteronomy 32:4 we read, “He {God} is the Rock, his work {or God’s workmanship} is perfect,” and since we are, according to the Bible, God’s workmanship, then we certainly have been called into something perfectly wonderful! It is a calling into fellowship with Christ Jesus and set upon a course to enjoy his resurrected life in us, for we are created in Christ Jesus, “as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:4).

Every craftsperson is pleased with his workmanship, and it is the same with God – He is completely thrilled with us! The Epistles (Romans through Thessalonians) shows us the good works that God would have us walk in, but the choice is obviously ours in this life. This is why the verse states that we should; this is not a commandment but a loving request. When comparing walking (or living) by the course of this world as is shown in Ephesians 2:1-2 with what is made available to the believer in Ephesians 2:10, that we may live our lives by the good works that God has already ordained for us, we cannot be anything but thankful because we are already pleasing to God. This is an awesome place to start because God has already, “made us accepted in the beloved” (Ephesians 1:6), the beloved being our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and we have been accepted to stand with him and our heavenly Father from this moment onward.

Let us again read Ephesians 2:10 from the Amplified Bible:

Ephesians 2:10 (The Amplified Bible):*
For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].

Being God’s workmanship is an awesome present, freely given to all believers, and God be lauded and praised today as we recall the blessed life of our Savior, Christ the Lord. He made it available for God to work this miracle for you and I to be The Creator’s Masterpiece, His workmanship, “recreated in Christ Jesus,” as we continue enjoying the blessings of living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to enjoy with Him for all eternity!

“When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.” ~John Ruskin~

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

Contrasting the Devil and the LORD

“Do you know what always follows the error that causes one to believe in, Ye shall not surely die and you will immediately go to heaven? The belief and confession that God also kills and this is further followed up with the false belief that God takes from us, to include not only our loved ones, but also our hopes and our dreams! None of which is true, The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy- John 10:10, and this thief is the Devil! While in contrast, we read, Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart– Psalms 37:4.” ~LMJ~

Zephaniah – Revealing Our Eternal Rest

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

In the Book of Zephaniah, we can see God’s love and deliverance, and we can learn some tremendous truths regarding the will of God that believers can partake of in God’s loving grace. Jesus Christ is he who reveals to us our eternal rest in God’s love that we currently have.

When we discover God’s eternal love for us and begin experiencing that His love is within, then love begins dispelling fears about God (I John 4:6-21).

Zephaniah 3:15-17:
-15: The LORD hath taken away thy judgments {of condemnation}, he hath cast out thine enemy: the king of Israel, even the LORD, is in the midst of thee: thou shalt not see evil any more.
-16: In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem, Fear thou not: and to Zion, Let not thine hands be slack {let not your hands hang down, i.e., as a defeated city}.
-17: The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty {God is always mighty to deliver, not only in the present tense but always}; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love {for you}, he will joy over thee with singing.

Verses 15 and 16 refer to the future for Israel, while verse 17 is in the continuously present tense, because God is always mighty, He always will save, He always rejoices, He always loves, and He always sings a joyful song for His children.

When I look back over my life and remember just a fraction of how much I feared God or even hearing His name, and was so terrified of His wrath that I assumed was due to me, I realize the healing and comforting miracle that has taken place so that I may enjoy teaching His healing Word. We can become so thankful to our heavenly Father the more we begin to see and realize in our hearts that He (in love) has sent His only begotten Son so that we may live with the understanding that God loves us so very deeply.

God has loved us from before the foundation of the world, and He will always love us, regardless of how much we reciprocate or recognize Him or His messenger of divine love – Jesus Christ. In the Old Testament, even if the children of Israel never accepted all of God’s care and protection, He continued loving them, and in their future He would restore them back in Zion and prove to them His love beyond all of their comprehensions.

Today, however, in grace, we do not need to wait for our arrival into heaven to begin enjoying God’s love because Christ the Lord made God’s love available for us to enjoy.

Let us look at the will of God from verse 17 above: “He will save!” “He will rejoice over thee with joy!” “He will rest in his love!” and “He will joy over thee with singing!”

Ask yourself this question: “Is the will of God one of fear and despair for us, or is the will of God one that would give us more than we ever realized, especially before knowing the love of our wonderful heavenly Father?” Obviously the will of God is marvelous to behold, and without knowing Christ who is the way to the Father we could never really believe to receive God’s loving will, or enjoy the more abundant life that Jesus Christ came to give us (John 10:10)!

I Timothy 2:4-6:
-4: Who {God} will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
-5: For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
-6: Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time {and that time is now}.

John 13:34-35:
-34: A new commandment I {Jesus} give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
-35: By this {new commandment of love, which is our God-given spiritual love} shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

In Romans 5:8 we read, “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” The word “commendeth” means to introduce into our hearts, and what we are introduced into is the love of God with all the spiritual intensity that God has been loving us with since the beginning of time.

With His love and with the examples of the life of Jesus Christ and the new commandment, we can learn how to love in the same exact ways he did, and thus we will begin increasingly to enjoy Our Eternal Rest in God’s love that we have been introduced to through Jesus Christ’s loving example.

We Were Bought With a Price

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Jesus Christ gave one hundred percent for you and me; he gave his all in all. He never gave his life for ten percent of our money, but much rather he gave everything for us so that we could freely walk with God. We were not redeemed with tithes, but with all of the precious blood of the Redeemer (I Peter 1:18–19). We were redeemed with every fragment of Jesus’ being. He paid the ultimate price for humanity’s salvation so that we may “freely” walk with God and with our Savior and enjoy the more abundant life (John 10:10)!

If an athlete would only give ten percent of their abilities or talents they would be out on the street, they give one hundred percent. God does not require ten percent of what you own or earn, He wants all of you (Romans 12:1–2) in the sense that you already belong to Him because of the work of Christ, and this God desires that we know.

I Corinthians 6:19–20:
-19: What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost {the holy spirit} which is in you, which we have of God, and ye are not your own?
-20: For ye are bought with a price: therefore {give, give, and give until it hurts, no – but rather} glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

All we own is already God’s: “THE earth is the LORD’S, and the fullness thereof” (Psalms 24:1ff), and all Christian people are His children (whether or not we recognize this and acknowledge Him). The very best that we can return to God today is glory, praise, and honor, and commit our ways unto God with thankfulness that He indeed is our heavenly Father. When we get to the place in our own minds that we believe all we have is God’s in the first place (after all He did create everything), then through our believing, God will become our true sufficiency in life (at one hundred percent).

When people give ten percent of their incomes and an hour or so of their time to God each week, then they inevitably will end up ninety percent short, and receive only sporadically, rather than when we acknowledge God as our true sufficiency with all that He has given to us.

First and foremost, what God has given to us is meant to sustain us! Then as we become genuinely thankful for whatever abundance we have, even more of God’s abundance will come our way. Having a heart of thankfulness and gratitude for knowing God, recognizing that we will live with Him throughout eternity can cause us to become cheerful givers who are inspired by God’s divine love (II Corinthians 9:7).

 Galatians 6:9:
And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season {at the appropriate time} we shall reap, if we faint not.

This verse is a spiritual principle and promise from God that we will reap and that we can receive from Him for standing faithful to Him “in well doing.” For as believers “commit the keeping of their souls {their lives} to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator” (I Peter 4:19), we will discover that God our Creator is indeed our sufficiency, and our every reason to remain faithful to Him day by day.

Proverbs 16:3 says, “Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established,” even if our thoughts are, “I wonder if God is real, and if He does hear my prayers.” God can establish even these to you personally and prove to you that He will never leave or forsake you. Psalms 37:4–5 states: “Delight thyself also in the LORD, and he shall give the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it {the desires of your heart} to pass.”

The more we commit ourselves into the care of God, the greater the blessings become manifested in our lives. In II Corinthians 8:5 it says of the believers that they: “first gave their own selves to the Lord.” This is when (and how) believers truly begin receiving abundance from our Creator.

Yes, it does take time for people to put their trust and believing in God Whom they have never seen, yet Jesus encourages, “blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed” (John 20:29). The more we understand from God’s healing Word, the easier it becomes to allow God and His blessings into our lives. “Whom {Jesus} having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory” (I Peter 1:8). When we learn to give God our first thoughts in the day, and thank Him in Christ’s name for the day which He has made for us, then we will be experiencing joy that is truly beyond words.

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.