Scripture: (2 Corinthians
5:17 KJV) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things
are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
As we enter into this holiday season God has been showing me in His word more and more what it means to be a “Born again Christian.” The mystery of God revealed in the eternal life of Christ present in the body of believers. We too often take it for granted when we proclaim ourselves as being a Christian. One of the things I praise God for is the diversity of denominations that are reading these messages. I know there are Lutherans and Methodists and Catholics and Pentecostals and Baptists and even a Pagan or two. This is not about religion it is about the love of God shed abroad in the hearts of men through His Son Jesus Christ. Now I know that the Pagans that read these words, read them with skepticism. But my hope is that more pagans would read these messages. So if you know anyone who is not a Christian and feel that they may benefit from any of these messages please forward them on. The Bible teaches us that the Word of God will not come back void. So lets cast our bread upon the water and watch God bring us the return.
That almost brings me to the point of today’ message. The idea of casting our bread upon the water. Do you know where that expression came from? King Solomon wrote it in the book of Ecclesiastes; (Eccl 11:1 KJV) Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days. I have heard it said of this passage that it is concerning the farmers that shipped out their grain. They never knew if anything would return. It takes faith to rise above the ashes. It takes faith to stand up for what you believe in. it takes faith to become the man or woman that God has called you to be.
Change is hard for all of us. Sometimes we can become discouraged with ourselves because we have not changed. Other times we do not like the people we have changed into. Right now I want you to stop looking at all the things that are wrong with you and just thank God for loving you. We all know that the Bible teaches us that we are to love our neighbor, as we love ourselves. Well, that’s not real hard if you do not love yourself. We need to look at ourselves through God’s eyes. I want you to read this passage of scripture from Psalm 139:
(Psa 139:14-18 NIV) I praise you because I am
fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was
woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All
the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to
be. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I
am still with you.
God does have a
perfect plan for your life. He knows all of those dark secrets and painful
memories that continue to haunt you. But that is not the life that God has
chosen for you. He does not want you to live in condemnation and fear. Perfect
loves casts out fear and God is Love. It was God Himself that reconciled us to
Him. Even though it was us that committed the offense, He was the one that paid
our fine and opened the door that we can freely enter into His presence. I have
taught before from the 17th chapter of John, but I think it is
important for us to look again at Jesus’ prayer for us. (John 17:20-23 KJV)
Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me
through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I
in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou
hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they
may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made
perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast
loved them, as thou hast loved me.
The bottom line is that God loves you with a never-ending unconditional love that nothing can destroy. His prayer is that He would dwell within your heart and in that way you can experience His glory. Yes we all make mistakes but it is time that you stop looking at everything that is wrong with you and start concentrating on the power that is alive within you to overcome all trials and temptations.
Sometimes we forget the extent of the awesome power and authority and majesty of God that enters into us when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. My fear is that there may be even one reader of this message that has not as yet came to the realization of the truth which is in Jesus. If you are reading these words today and you have never before confessed that Jesus Christ is Lord and you now believe in your heart that God raised Him from the grave, God wants you to know that He is ready to enter in and change your life. That passage of scripture at the top of this message is true. We are new creations in Christ Jesus. Not perfect but forgiven, sanctified, justified and welcomed into the eternal family of God. All it takes is for you to say “OK.”
Now for those of you who for years have professed the name of Jesus. God wants to strengthen you today. He wants to rekindle the flames of that first love. You have been reconciled to Him and now it is time for you to stop putting yourself down and recognize your place at the table. Even King David felt like a worm at times. We can read in the 22nd Psalm how he calls himself a worm and not a man. You know satan loves to keep us down. He knows that he can not separate us from the love of God nor can he snatch us out of God’s hands but if he can get us looking at our own failures we will not have our eyes on God’s strength.
I am going to close this message with a passage of scripture from the book of Titus but before I do I want you to check out 3 things in your life. 1st I want you to be sure of your salvation. I know that most every one of my readers are born again believers. I want you then 1st of all today to reaffirm to yourself the security of your salvation. As you do that look again at that familiar verse of scripture above. “Therefore, if any man (that’s you) be in Christ, (you have accepted Jesus as your Lord) He is a new creation; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” Satan does not want you to believe this. He wants you to blame yourself and kick yourself and if you let him he will remind you of every little thing you have ever done wrong until you resist him. And when you do, when you stand up to him with the word of God in your heart and on your lips I am telling you it is so true there is no weapon that is formed against you that will prosper. I do not care what situation you are in. I do not care how low you have gone or how high and mighty you may have grown God is able to take you higher. But it all starts with you getting straight in your mind the truth of the change that Jesus is making in you. Jesus on the inside working on the outside, oh what a change in my life.
2nd stop looking at your own limitations and start looking at the almighty power that is in God. The same God that created the heavens and the earth is now working within you His perfect plan for your life. Stop looking at your failures and concentrate on the victory that is in Jesus. Start reading biographies of great men and woman whose lives have been drastically changed by the presence of Christ in their lives. Dig deeper into the Bible and let the Holy Spirit reveal the very mysteries of God to your spirit.
Then thirdly go and make a difference for someone else. If you really want to experience the glory of God. If you want to stand under the spout where the glory comes out then go and give to someone else even the slightest bit of love and compassion. You may never know what the outcome of your good deed will be but you can bet that as you cast your bread of love upon the waters of humanity you will reap eternal and abundant rewards now, and in the world to come, amen.
Now lets read
from the book of Titus:
(Titus 2:11-14 KJV) For
the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us
that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly,
righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope,
and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who
gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto
himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
put it this way; “Let us be up and doing with a heart for any fate, still
achieving, Still pursuing, learn to labor and to wait.
God wants you
to walk in His blessing. He wants you to know that when you accepted Jesus
Christ as your savior all the power and authority in the heavens and the earth
are at your disposal to overcome the enemy. Never let satan lie to you again.
You are a child of God and you have a great work ahead of you so stand tall and
know that God is with you.
Heavenly Father I thank you today for the work that you are continuing to do in
and through me. I surrender to you my life with all thanksgiving inviting Jesus
to sit upon the throne of my heart. Thank you Jesus for paying the price of my
failures and sins and I pray for the power of the Holy Spirit to come upon me
that I may continue to be drawn closer to you and be that good and faithful
servant that you have called me to be. From this moment on I put the past behind
me and I press on to that High calling which is in Christ Jesus Our Lord. For it
is in His wonderful name I pray Amen
Feel free to write me or drop me a line. I look forward to hearing from you. God Bless;
Pastor Bob Richardson
700 N. Garden Ave.
Clearwater, Fl. 33755