“I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and putting both men and women into prisons,” said the apostle Paul recounting his conversion to Christ to a hostile crowd of Jews intent on killing him for his faith in Jesus and for his mission to convert the Gentiles to Christ. *Acts 22:4
“Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name”, are the words a gospel preacher sent by Jesus named Ananias spoke to a repentant Saul of Tarsus a killer of Christians who had seen Jesus and was fasting and praying in repentance * Acts 22:16
What has your preacher told you to do to be saved? If it’s not what Ananias told Paul it’s wrong.
Saul the killer became Paul the apostle. Jesus can save anybody no matter what they’ve done if they will come to Him in faith, repent of their sins and be immersed in water for the forgiveness of their sins “having faith in the working of God” * Acts 2:38; Colossians 2:12; 1 Peter 3:21.
That includes you
God bless you
For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven * Matthew 5:20.
Jesus, in His “Sermon on the Mount”, drove the point home that He does not merely want His followers to be religious outwardly, like the religious leaders of His day, but to exceed them by internalizing His teaching.
That meant being humble, sorry for our sins, gentle, hungry for God’s righteousness, merciful, sincere, peaceable, and able to stand firm in our faith amidst persecution for Jesus’s name * Matthew 5:1-12.
It means taking those inward qualities mentioned above and applying them as we interact with others by being salt (which purifies, permeates, and seasons) whatever it comes into contact with, and light (illuminating a dark world with the light of the Lord Jesus Christ) * Matthew 5:13-16.
Do you go to the Lord’s church every Sunday and worship HIm in spirit and truth? Good, that is expected, but Jesus expects more. We are to take the morals and principles we learn from God’s word and allow them to transform our thinking then bless others with our godly ways * Romans 12:1-2.
Jesus expects more from His people than the bare minimum. He expects sincere service from the heart of those who wish to enter the Kingdom of heaven.
Let’s think about that, pray about it, and do it.
God bless you.
Today we come to our second set of imperatives in the 37th Psalm. Commitment (imperative) means to be all in and quitting is not an option. It is akin to a skydiver jumping out of a plane thousands of feet in the air, there is no going back. In order for her or him to do this, they must trust (imperative) their equipment, (the proper packing of their parachute). Once the chute is employed they can rest easy(imperative) and enjoy the ride, while waiting patiently (imperative) for a smooth landing in the end.
There will be many ups and downs in the Christian walk. We are not immune to the troubles and trials of this world. Yet the truly committed won’t let anything turn them around from following God. They have committed to the King of glory, they place their trust in Him anew every day (for He alone is trustworthy), they rest in God’s blessings, and they don’t become overly worried (“do not fret” imperative) about the evil one * Philippians 4:4-9.
Commitment to God brings the peace of mind which accompanies assurance of a safe landing in the end.
God bless you
Opening his mouth, Peter said: “I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality, 35 but in every nation, the man who fears Him and [z]does what is right is welcome to Him * Acts 10:34-35.
What will it take for us to understand that God loves and values all humans alike? God had to teach Peter through a vision of His desire to save all men and women (regardless of ethnicity, culture, class, or color). Once Peter was convinced he preached the same gospel to Cornelius and his household (Gentiles) which he preached to the Jews on Pentecost. The message of Jesus’s sacrifice for the sins of the world, His resurrection from the dead, and His placement as God the Father’s, Holy Spirit anointed judge of the living and of the dead * Acts 10:36-42.
Cornelius and his household had to submit to Jesus’s instructions of biblical baptism (immersion) just like the Jews on the day of Pentecost * Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 10:47; Acts 2:41. There was no difference.
There are many types of people in the world but just one race (human) and only one way to be saved and that’s through Jesus. God doesn’t show partiality and neither must we?
Let’s share the same gospel with everyone.
God bless you.