Thursday, October 28, 2010


IN the beginning GOD created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)

IN the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with GOD, and the Word was GOD. (John 1:1)

He was in the beginning with GOD. (John 1:2)

All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. (John 1:3)

In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. (John 1:4)

And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. (John 1:5)

And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14)

No one has ever seen GOD. But His only Son, who is Himself GOD, is near to the Father's heart; He has told us about Him. (John 1:18)

CHRIST is the One through whom GOD created everything in heaven and earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can't see--kings, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities. Everything has been created through Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:16)

He existed before everything else began, and He holds all creation together. (Colossians 1:17)

For GOD in all His fullness was pleased to live in CHRIST, and by Him GOD reconciled everything to Himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of His blood on the cross. This includes you who were once so far away from GOD. You were His enemies, separated from Him by your evil thoughts and actions,

...yet now He has brought you back as His friends. He has done this through His death on the cross in His own human body. As a result, He has brought you into the very presence of GOD, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before Him without a single fault. (Colossians 1:19-22)

The One who existed from the beginning is the One we have heard and seen. We saw Him with our own eyes and touched Him with our own hands. He is JESUS CHRIST, the Word of life. (1 John 1:1)

This One who is life from GOD was shown to us, and we have seen Him. And now we testify and announce to you that He is the One who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then He was shown to us. (1 John 1:2)

The heavens tell of the glory of GOD. The skies display His marvelous craftsmanship. (Psalm 19:1)

Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make Him known. (Psalm 19:2)

They speak without a sound or a word; their voice is silent in the skies;
yet their message has gone out to all the earth, and their words to all the world. (Psalm 19:3-4a)

Reverence for the LORD is pure, lasting forever. The laws of the LORD are true; each one is fair. (Psalm 19:9)

For i am not ashamed of this Good News about CHRIST. It is the power of GOD at work, saving everyone who believes--Jews first and also Gentiles. (Romans 1:16)

This Good News tells us how GOD makes us right in His sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, "It is through faith that a righteous person has life."

But GOD shows His anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who push the truth away from themselves. For the truth about GOD is known to them instinctively. GOD has put this knowledge in their hearts.

From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that GOD made. They can clearly see His invisible qualities--His eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing GOD.

Yes, they knew GOD, but they wouldn't worship him as GOD or even give Him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what GOD was like. The result was that their minds became dark and confused.

Claiming to be wise, they became utter fools instead.

And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living GOD, they worshiped idols... Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about GOD, they deliberately chose to believe lies. So they worshiped the things GOD made but not the Creator Himself, who is to be praised forever. Amen.
(Romans 1:17-25)

When a pair of Jehovah Witnesses come a-knocking on my door and we debate over JESUS' deity, knowing that their New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures has blinded them in how they perceive CHRIST's preeminence -- for the NWT translates John 1:1, "and the Word was a god" -- i find it a challenge not to be rude by flatly saying that their founder (Charles Taze Russell) had arrogantly changed what has been accepted for centuries by the CHRISTian fathers as GOD's inerrant, infallible Word: CHRIST JESUS is GOD.

The "altar calls" -- invitations -- of today are not Biblical. Nowhere in the Bible was any sinner "invited" with the methodologies used today. JESUS commanded, Repent and believe in the Gospel... follow Me.

It grieves me when i hear formulaic invitations to receive our most precious JESUS as Savior, without first proclaiming the full Gospel truth -- not just about His atoning sacrifice on the cross and resurrection, but how He received the full unabated wrath of the Father as propitiation (appeasement) for all of mankind's sin. All the sinner has to do is repeat a sample prayer -- no exhortation to repent (to turn from his sin and turn to GOD), no mention of the grossness of his sin against a most holy GOD -- that everyone else has to close their eyes so that the sinner can just raise his/her hand without being seen -- without being embarrassed...

JESUS died an excruciating bloody death on the cross and was abandoned by the Father, and we have the audacity to "invite" the sinner ever so gently so as not to embarrass him? GOD has commanded that we repent and believe in the Gospel. (Mark 1:15) He is Creator. He is Sovereign. He controls our very breath... and yet we hem and haw at obeying His Word -- His Son.

JESUS is LORD over all Creation -- of every created creature, whether or not that created being acknowledges Him as LORD, whether or not he accepts GOD's gift: JESUS' finished work of redemption. CHRIST is LORD... He is GOD.

Everyone wants to go to heaven, to paradise... but not everyone wants JESUS to be the Way to get there. Everyone wants to go to heaven to live in bliss forever, but many do not want GOD there... for He is holy, holy, holy -- and in Him is no darkness at all. And without holiness, no one can see GOD. (Isaiah 6:3, 1 John 1:5, Hebrews 12:14)

After seeing the few amazing photos of GOD's creation (courtesy of the Hubble telescope) -- how can one remain the unbelieving fool? How can man kowtow to an earthly king or president -- yet remain unmoved by the exhibited glories of GOD? How can one not reverence the One who created the all that we see and the all that we can't see?

How can one get a glimpse of JESUS and not see the face of GOD? How can one remain untouched by the Truth? How can one not fall in love with the Person of CHRIST?

JESUS is LOVE manifest. He died for you. He paid in full your sin-debts. When you know CHRIST, you know the Father. When you know CHRIST, you are illumined by the Holy SPIRIT. When you humbly acknowledge JESUS as Adonai -- your LORD and Master -- GOD Himself will raise you from the valley of dry bones and quicken your spirit to live forever. (Ezekiel 37)

JESUS is the Way to eternal peace with the Father... not Buddha... not Muhammad. For it was JESUS to whom the Father declared, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!" (Matthew 17:5)

Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and you perish in the way, when His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him. (Psalm 2:12)

Please donate. ALL donations will benefit the Naselesele Village school children in Taveuni, Fiji. VINAKA VAKA LEVU! 

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

We Are NOT Invited --

We are commanded.

CHRIST JESUS preached the Gospel of the Kingdom of GOD -- Repent, and believe in the gospel. (Mark 1:15)

John the Baptist cried out in the wilderness -- Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand! (Matthew 3:2)

Paul the Apostle exhorted -- ...repent, turn to GOD, and do works befitting repentance. (Acts 26:20)

Peter the Apostle declared -- Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of JESUS CHRIST for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy SPIRIT.( (Acts 2:38)

The One True GOD is holy. Exalt the LORD our GOD, and worship at His holy hill; for the LORD our GOD is holy. (Psalm 99:9)

GOD hates sin.

The LORD tests the righteous, but the wicked and the one who loves violence His soul hates. (Psalm 11:5) These six things the LORD hates, yes, seven are an abomination to Him: a proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies,

and one who sows discord among brethren.
(Proverbs 6:16-19)

...bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, evil speaking, malice... (Ephesians 4:31) ...adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries... (Galatians 5:19-21)

...evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies... (Matthew 15:19)

unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; whisperers, backbiters, haters of GOD, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful... (Romans 1:29-31) ...debased mind... vile passions (Romans 1:26-27)

Because GOD is good -- because He is a holy and righteous GOD -- He must judge and punish sin. The wrath of GOD is what each sinner has in store for all eternity.

The Good News -- Sinless GOD the Son drank the bitter cup of GOD the Father's wrath that was meant for you and me... for all sinners. JESUS was the Lamb sacrificed on the Cross at Calvary and took upon Himself the full, unabated deluge of the wrath of GOD for all of mankind's sins -- past, present and future.

All of us have broken the Ten Commandments of GOD. All of us have done those sins that GOD hates. We deserve the punishment from GOD, the Creator who is infinitely holy and just.

The Good News -- Blameless Son of GOD took our punishment and died in our stead -- the scourging, the crown of thorns, the nails hammered in His hands and feet, the abandonment of the Father -- the unabated wrath of GOD.

All of humankind are born with sin-nature. There is no one good -- NOT ONE (Psalm 53:3). All have sinned. All have broken the first and foremost commandment -- love the LORD your GOD with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. (Matthew 22:37) All have done evil in the sight of a holy GOD.

The Good News -- CHRIST accomplished the atoning work He and the Father have ordained before the foundation of the world. It is finished! (John 19:30)

GOD is holy Judge... He must punish evil, sinful man -- you and me... all sinners. No one escapes His judgment. No one escapes His righteous wrath.

GOD is also perfect love... He provided the Substitute -- CHRIST JESUS. He paid in full all our sin-debts.

Now JESUS commands a response. He doesn't invite you to receive Him -- He commands us to repent -- to turn from our sins... to turn to Him. Repent, and believe in the gospel!

Charles Haddon Spurgeon (excerpt from Faith and Repentance Inseparable in italics) remarked "that the gospel which CHRIST preached was, very plainly, a command... though He condescended to reason, to persuade, to invite, and to beseech, still His gospel had in it all the dignity and force of a command; and if we would preach it in these days as CHRIST did, we must proclaim it as a command from GOD, attended with a divine sanction, and not to be neglected save at the infinite peril of the soul.

Repent is as much a command of GOD as You shall not steal. Believe on the LORD JESUS CHRIST has as fully a divine authority as You shall love the LORD your GOD with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength. Think not, O men, that the gospel is a thing left to your option to choose it or not! Dream not, O sinners, that you may despise the Word from heaven and incur no guilt! Think not that you may neglect it and no ill consequences shall follow! It is just this neglect and despising of yours which shall fill up the measure of your iniquity. It is this concerning which we cry aloud, How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation! GOD commands you to repent.

It is one of the saddest proofs of man's utter depravity that he will not obey this command, but that he will despise CHRIST, and so make his doom worse than the doom of Sodom and Gomorrah.

"Repentance is to leave
the sins we loved before,
And show that we in earnest grieve, by doing so no more."

To repent does mean a change of mind; but then it is a thorough change of the understanding and all that is in the mind, so that it includes an illumination, an illumination of the Holy SPIRIT; and I think it includes a discovery of iniquity and a hatred of it, without which there can hardly be a genuine repentance. We must not, I think, undervalue repentance. It is a blessed grace of GOD the Holy SPIRIT, and it is absolutely necessary unto salvation.

...a repentance which makes me weep and abhor my past life because of the love of CHRIST which has pardoned it, is the right repentance.

...the repentance which makes us avoid present sin because of the love of GOD who died for us, this also is saving repentance.

...when I avoid it
and seek to lead a holy life because CHRIST loved me and gave Himself up for me, and because I am not my own, but am bought with a price, this is the work of the SPIRIT of GOD.

The repentance which is here commanded is the result of faith; it is born at the same time with faith—they are twins... It is a great mystery... the fact being that they come into the soul together.

Believe the gospel. Faith means trust in CHRIST.

No faith can be genuine but such as is perfectly consistent with repentance for past sin... no faith is true but that which is linked with a hearty and sincere repentance on account of past sin.

Why, dear friends, do you expect to be saved while you are in your sins? Are you to be allowed to love your iniquities, and yet go to heaven? What, you think to have poison in your veins, and yet be healthy? What, man, keep the thief in doors, and yet be acquitted of dishonesty? Be stained, and yet be thought spotless? Harbour the disease and yet be in health? Ridiculous! Absurd! The demand for a change of heart is absolutely necessary; it is but a reasonable service.

This is a command which demands immediate obedience.

"Today," the gospel always cries, for if it tolerated sin a single day, it were an unholy gospel. If the gospel told men to repent of sin tomorrow, it would give them an allowance to continue in it today, and that would indeed be to pander to men's lusts. But the gospel makes a clean sweep of sin, and demands of man that he should throw down the weapons of his rebellion now.

Sinner, it is your time. This is the only time you can call your own. Tomorrow! Is there such a thing? In what calendar is it written save in the almanack of the fool?
...on the great white throne the Judge shall sit, there will be not a man, or woman, or child, able to make excuse and say, "I did not hear the gospel; I did not know what I must do to be saved!" You have heard it: Repent, and believe the gospel. That is, trust CHRIST; believe that He is able and willing to save you." (Words of C. H. Spurgeon -- updated English and emphasis mine.)

The Gospel of CHRIST JESUS is not an invitation -- it is a command from GOD that demands a response today.

Please donate. ALL donations will benefit the Naselesele Village school children in Taveuni, Fiji. VINAKA VAKA LEVU!