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John Helps Us See Jesus in the Flesh

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John Helps Us See Jesus in the Flesh

There’s another reason God sent His Son in the flesh.

God sent his son, Jesus, so we could see God, we could touch Him, we could hear His voice and feel His love for us.

So John writes, The Word of life existed from the beginning. We have heard it. We have seen it. We observed and touched it. This life was revealed to us. We have seen it, and we testify about it. We are reporting to you about this eternal life that was in the presence of the Father and was revealed to us. This is the life we have seen and heard. We are reporting about it to you also so that you, too, can have a relationship with us. Our relationship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 We are writing this so that we can be completely filled with joy (1 John 1:1-4 GW).

By the time John wrote his letter to the churches, some were already following a false doctrine that claimed Jesus wasn’t really human. They believed that Jesus did come and appear as a man, but He was not in really human. He was a Spirit. He ate with man: he suffered with man: he even experienced death, but it was for appearances only.

They doubted the gospel narratives and mocked the supposed miraculous conception and birth of Jesus, questioning whether He was even on earth before His ministry began at the presumed age of 30.

Even in this very day, there are many people who seek to to discredit both the divinity or humanity of Jesus, or flatly deny His existence on earth.

In John’s letter to the churches, his passion was to show Jesus as fully God and fully human. John wants us to know that Jesus lived life in the flesh, so we could live victoriously over the flesh.

John says, “We saw Him. We touched Him. We heard Him.”

In fact, even though Jesus is not here, we still see him! The truth is, we still touch Him! Jesus is still changing our lives, still helping us to overcome the brokenness around us and in us.

And nothing has changed! We too can experience Jesus. He touches our hearts. He speaks to our minds. He fills us with joy.

Watch or listen to the complete message here.

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Fear is a Spirit

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Fear is a Spirit

Fear is a spirit, but it’s not the right spirit. It’s not the Spirit of God.

2 Timothy 1:7 says, “God didn’t give us a cowardly spirit but a spirit of power, love, and good judgment.”[1] That same scripture in the New King James translation says, “God has not given us a spirit of fear.”

A spirit of cowardice keeps us from making good decisions. A spirit of cowardice keeps us from stepping into the fray of life. Here’s what I’ve come to learn.

God can ONLY use me to the degree that I can stand the heat.

And in my most difficult moments I grow the most!

Jesus experienced every human emotion and feeling that we will ever experience. In the Garden of Gethsemane He tasted the fullness of fear. Most of us don’t know when we are going to die, and it’s for sure that we don’t know how. But Jesus knew both. His entire life He was preparing for death, and what a painful death it would be—a crucifixion.

Jesus had to come to that place of accepting His death and walking into that moment.

  • He literally sweat great drops of blood/He could have died right there!
  • Angels came and ministered to Him!

When Jesus arose from prayer He was at complete peace. He walked with confidence towards His captors. They didn’t take His life. He laid it down. Through faith and trust in God we can get to the place where we can face death itself without fear. I’ve seen it many times, and it’s amazing!

Jesus had frequently been called the son of David. It was His father, David who wrote those amazing words; “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for YOU are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”[2]

Paul boldly called Timothy to lay down his fear. “So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord or be ashamed of me, his prisoner. Instead, by God’s power, join me in suffering for the sake of the Good News.”[3]

 

[1] GW

[2] Psalm 23:4

[3] 2 Timothy 1:8 GW

Faith—An Antidote for Fear

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Faith—An Antidote for Fear

Another antidote for fear is faith. Recently we talked about spiritual warfare and the importance of our spiritual armor. One piece of your armor is the shield of faith, which stops the flaming darts of the evil one.

Listen to me. Our faith in Jesus is more powerful than we understand. Faith is more than belief in God or a particular doctrine.

Faith is the very thing that preserves our soul, our sanity in the battles of life.

The last thing Paul wrote before his death; “I have finished the race, I have fought the good fight, I have kept the faith.” Faith sustained him.

Keep in mind Timothy was a pastor (see previous blog Showing Concern for Others—Antidote for Fear). Pastors are not immune to fear. So to his distressed son, Paul wrote, “I’m reminded of how sincere your faith is. That faith first lived in your grandmother, Lois and your mother, Eunice. I’m convinced that it also lives in you.”[1]

Paul was convinced that faith was still in Timothy, but it clearly sounds as if Timothy was not so sure about it! So Paul spoke faith over him.

“Don’t lose your faith son! Faith will SAVE you!”

[1] 2 Timothy 1:5 GW

Whatever is On the Inside Comes Out

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Whatever is On the Inside Comes Out

Inside Out, a new blog series launching today, deals with our emotions. Whatever is inside always comes to the outside. Jesus said it’s impossible to stop ourselves from speaking what’s on the inside; for “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”[1]

We want to examine what healthy biblical emotions look like. We want to use Jesus as our example.

Here’s what we know for sure. Jesus experienced all five emotions; fear, anger, disgust, sadness and joy. And yet His emotions never controlled His reactions. His emotions didn’t drive His decisions or lead Him to sin.

Our fears must be challenged.

If we allow fear to grow unchecked, we give it the right to be our master, and a horrible master it will be.

The Apostle Paul wrote to Pastor Timothy; “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”[2] Why did Paul write that? Because Timothy was completely overwhelmed with fear and was walking away from the ministry.

  • Fear disempowers us.
  • Naked fear enslaves us.
  • Fear left unchallenged will make us feel like a helpless victims, even though we aren’t.

Someone said that 90% of the things we fear never come to pass. But do you know what that proves? Fear actually works!

Have you ever thought about some of the things we fear the most?

We fear:

  • important decisions.
  • living in a world that seems out of control.
  • losing our jobs.
  • finding out we have a serious illness.
  • And most of all we fear our own destructive impulses, impulses we can no longer resist, and with that fear is the greater fear of being disgraced and losing respect.

Isaiah 43: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the LORD your God, your Savior.”[3]

[1] Luke 6:45

[2] 2 Timothy 1:7

[3] Isaiah 43:1-3 NKJV

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