Tag Archives: personal relationship

If Only I Knew – Part 3

Sunday Mornings at the Movies.

Welcome back to the Church of Corinth. Corinthians: the Sequel (aka 2 Corinthians: Volume 13 of Heavenly Citizens in Earthly Shoes) is now available as paperback and eBook. Don’t miss the exciting conclusion to the movie. It is heart wrenching as all get-out, let me tell you. Surprise endings are the icing on the cake, and this is some tasty cake!  Simply click here to order.

Oh, but a sequel is always more comprehensible if its parent movie is seen first, and then the prequel afterwards. So you would do well to read 1 Corinthians: Volume 12 first, and then read 2 Corinthians: Volume 13. But not to fret. You can still enjoy the sequel, should you choose to skip her mama. So what are you waiting for? Get yourself to our online bookstore and fetch your own copy! Simply click here to order.

That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.  I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints [Ephesians 1:17-18].

Law doesn’t inspire us or woo us to love. Law forces us to do, so as to get something in return. The Apostle Paul wanted nothing to do with Law, and for a very good reason: he came to know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ!

God’s grace gives us eternal life freely. Grace adopts us into the family of God. Grace gives us new birth into the eternal kingdom. Grace pulls us out of the pit, washes us off, and sits us at the banqueting table. Grace gives because grace comes from the love of God, and love by definition gives.

Paul prayed for God to give to the Christians of the city of Ephesus “a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.” Wisdom may be defined as “understanding how to apply what we know to our daily living”. Revelation has to do with the Lord showing us what we don’t already know.

Paul wanted the Christians to receive the necessary information for daily living, and the ability to employ this information in their daily living, so they would grow in knowing and understanding the Lord Jesus. This comes first in the Christian’s relationship with God.

The blessings of God follow this, in fact flow out of knowing Jesus more and more. “Father God, give them what they need, so they will truly know Your Son Jesus!” That was Paul’s prayer and earnest desire for the Christians.

As this became a reality more and more, it followed that they would have their eyes opened to see the truth of God more clearly (verse 18). Then their hope would kick in and they would receive their inheritance, the riches of His glory.

But first came the true personal relationship with the Lord Jesus (verse 17). First we give our hearts to the Lord, love Him in spirit and truth, and require time alone with Him regularly. This promotes spiritual growth on our part, leading us to live with Jesus and for Jesus.

As we do so, we discover the vastness of our inheritance in Christ. It isn’t about what I get. It’s about what I give. I give my life to Jesus because He first gave His to me. I do so because I see how desirable He is and want to be like Him. What I’ll get in return doesn’t even enter the equation. Give, not take.

Is this what you want? Does it appeal to your inmost being? Let us arise and go to Jesus together. He will embrace us in His arms.

To further research this issue, I direct you to my book Genesis: Volume 1 of Heavenly Citizens in Earthly Shoes. To purchase my books please go to:
http://www.amazon.com/Randy-Green/e/B00507WC86

If Only I Knew – Part 2

Sunday Mornings at the Movies.

Welcome back to the Church of Corinth. Corinthians: the Sequel (aka 2 Corinthians: Volume 13 of Heavenly Citizens in Earthly Shoes) is now available as paperback and eBook. Don’t miss the exciting conclusion to the movie. It is heart wrenching as all get-out, let me tell you. Surprise endings are the icing on the cake, and this is some tasty cake!  Simply click here to order.

Oh, but a sequel is always more comprehensible if its parent movie is seen first, and then the prequel afterwards. So you would do well to read 1 Corinthians: Volume 12 first, and then read 2 Corinthians: Volume 13. But not to fret. You can still enjoy the sequel, should you choose to skip her mama. So what are you waiting for? Get yourself to our online bookstore and fetch your own copy! Simply click here to order.

That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.  I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints [Ephesians 1:17-18].

Contemporary Christianity has bit into the forbidden fruit. Christians nowadays determine for themselves what is right and what is wrong. We go by popular opinion, currying favor with others to win their support, like any modern politician. But we do it with regard to morality!

Alas, but this isn’t Biblical! God doesn’t agree. He needs no vote from us to make His determination for what is right and what is wrong. And He’s not the least bit impressed by any of our popularity contests either. It may surprise a great many Christians, but “American Idol” means zilch to God.

The Apostle Paul—you know, the guy who actually does have the heart of God—he had a different take on how the Lord views right and wrong. He had this thing about us sinners comparing ourselves with other sinners, so as to draw the conclusion that we’re not really so bad after all. Paul denounced it (cf., 2 Corinthians 10:12)!

In the two verses quoted at the commencement of today’s study, his intake affords us invaluable teaching vis-à-vis the mind of Christ. In the first verse he instructs Christians to know the Lord Jesus. Then in the second verse he points out how the Lord’s blessings follow from knowing the Lord.

If we’re out to get the blessings and bypass growing in our knowledge of the Lord, we’ll find ourselves up the proverbial creek without a paddle. The Lord blesses His kids like any good parent. The thing is, any good parent doesn’t shower affluence on his kids, while they live as inveterate urchins! Guess what? Neither does the Lord.

First we have to love Him enough to want to know Him. As we truly come to know Him, we discover how the Lord thinks, what He likes, what hurts Him, things of this sort. Hey! That’s basically how it is with our close earthly relationships too, isn’t it? Go figure.

Anyway, as we know the Lord more and more, our love for Him leads us to do the things which please Him. Simultaneously, our love encourages us to refrain from the things which hurt the Lord’s feelings. That is the definition of love. It comes from grace, not from Law.

Law leads us to do things for the Lord because He requires us to do them, else we won’t be blessed. This fits in well with middle class affluence and the “I-me-mine” mentality. We want to get something, so we grudgingly give something. Scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. Quid pro quo and all.

So much for Law. We will move on to a consideration of grace in our next study. Hope to see you there!

To further research this issue, I direct you to my book Joshua: Volume 6 of Heavenly Citizens in Earthly Shoes. To purchase my books please go to:
http://www.amazon.com/Randy-Green/e/B00507WC86

If Only I Knew – Part 1

Sunday Mornings at the Movies.

Welcome back to the Church of Corinth. Corinthians: the Sequel (aka 2 Corinthians: Volume 13 of Heavenly Citizens in Earthly Shoes) is now available as paperback and eBook. Don’t miss the exciting conclusion to the movie. It is heart wrenching as all get-out, let me tell you. Surprise endings are the icing on the cake, and this is some tasty cake!  Simply click here to order.

Oh, but a sequel is always more comprehensible if its parent movie is seen first, and then the prequel afterwards. So you would do well to read 1 Corinthians: Volume 12 first, and then read 2 Corinthians: Volume 13. But not to fret. You can still enjoy the sequel, should you choose to skip her mama. So what are you waiting for? Get yourself to our online bookstore and fetch your own copy! Simply click here to order.

That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.  I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints [Ephesians 1:17-18].

The Apostle Paul had the heart of the Lord. This is evident from his every word in the Scriptures. He sacrificed his life to promote the welfare of others. He endured hostility and resentment for insisting Christians practice holy living. He knew this was for their own good, and that harm would befall them should they live contrary to the Word of God.

Paul didn’t take from the Christians to benefit himself. Rather, he gave of himself to his own hurt, so they would know Christ and grow in His grace. That is the definition of true love, God’s love. “For God so loved the world that He GAVE…” By definition love gives. It doesn’t take or even insist on having its equal share.

We today put the cart before the horse when it comes to love. The all-important “I-me-mine” trumps all else. “I have my rights. Give them to me!” “I did such and so for you. What have you done for me? You owe me!” In all suchlike thoughts the other person’s welfare really isn’t considered. The bottom line: it’s all about “I-me-mine”.

We’ve become quite adept at building a façade in front of the old “I-me-mine” penchant. The façade gives the impression of a church building, and it wears an attractive religious garb. Even though we live the “I-me-mine” routine, we spruce it up with assortments of “Praise the Lords!” and “I’m praying for you”, and suchlike jargon. Stir in a touch of affluent middle class morality as a substitute for Biblical morals, and no one can discern the difference. Looks like the real McCoy to me!

In all of this I expect the Lord’s blessings to shower down upon me. If they don’t, someone must be doing me wrong. I deserve the blessings. They’re my right! After all, I’m a good Christian. Just ask some of the folks in the church building. They’ll tell you. I’m popular!

We’ve incorporated the general elections into making our determinations for what is spiritual and what is not. Let’s vote on it! I’ve got lots of friends. They’ll vote for me. They’ll affirm that my spiritual maturity level is off the charts. Just ask ‘em.

Such is the bane of the contemporary USA religious climate, dear friends. We will continue this topic in the next study. In the meantime let’s betake ourselves to the prayer closet to receive the Lord’s input.

To further research this issue, I direct you to my book Joshua: Volume 6 of Heavenly Citizens in Earthly Shoes. To purchase my books please go to:
http://www.amazon.com/Randy-Green/e/B00507WC86