Riff's Christian Journal

A Layman's View Of Christian Theology

Jesus – Savior God or Both?

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Ask any Christian, and not to few of non-Christians, if Jesus is a Savior and the answer would be yes. Ask any of these same people if Jesus is “the” Savior and the number of yeses would be far less. Ask all of the same people if Jesus is both Savior and God and the number of they who would say “yes” would be quite few in number.

So, the question is this – “Is Jesus Savior and God?”

To answer this question as simply and succinct as possible we are only going to look at three verses. Two verses actually bookmark a verse that many people know and use in explaining how anyone is saved from facing the wrath of God for their sins.

That verse, of which I speak, is found in Titus 3: 5

not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,

The two most important phrases are “His mercy” and “He saved us”. Why are these important? because we need to know about who it is that “His” and “He” is talking. This is where the two bookmark verses come into play.

The first one is verse 4:

But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared,

The important phrase here is “God our Savior”. This verse calls God our Savior, and it talks about His kindness and love toward man. So we can thus read, in putting the two verses together, the following:

But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,

So we see that God our Savior saved us. It is that simple – God our Savior saved us. With that in mind let us look at the other bookend verse. In verse 6 we read this:

whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior,

In this verse the important phrase to which we need to read says, “Jesus Christ our Savior,”. Let me say it again, “Jesus Christ our Savior!” In putting these three verses together – Titus 3: 4-6 we read this:

But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior,

These three verses run together so that they are all talking about one person. In knowing that we can shorten these three verses this way:

“The love of God our Savior Jesus saved us through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit whom was poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior and God.”

There is no way around it. In these three verses God is called Savior and that Savior is identified as Jesus, thus making Jesus both God and Savior. So, unless there is more than one God and more than one Savior the only explanation we have here is that God, Himself, is telling us that He is not only God but our Savior as well in the form of Jesus the man. Jesus is both God and Savior. These verses cannot be explained in any other way.

In order for us to be saved we must set aside our own righteousness, of which we have none, and to have faith in the righteousness of Jesus which is given to us when we are born again by the Holy Spirit Who is also God. In short it is by the grace of God poured out upon us because of His love that we are forgiven for our sins and saved from facing the wrath of God.

Jesus is our God and Savior. That is the very basis for the foundation upon which Christianity is built. If Jesus is not your God then He will not also be your Savior. It is that simple and it can become very real to you if you will just confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that He was raised from the dead you will be saved. For with the heart we believe unto righteousness and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Whoever will call upon the name of the Lord Jesus, who is both God and Savior, will be saved. Will you not do so right now? Nothing can be more reassuring than to know that God is our Savior, that our Savior’s name is Jesus and that makes Jesus our God. Jesus is both God and Savior. That is why salvation is not found in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.

Will you not call upon Jesus, who is God our Savior, for salvation?

 

Written by Glenn Riffey

February 7, 2016 at 8:44 pm

Knowing God’s Elect

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What is amazing is that the average “Christian” of today does not like to talk about the theology of election as it is a teaching that does not allow man to believe in a doctrine of salvation in which he cannot, and does not, participate. The thing is that there are numerous Scripture verses that mention or talk about this very act of salvation.

However, in the 1st letter to the Thessalonians there is a little read and often overlooked verse that speaks volumes about election. In the 1st chapter and verse 4 the Apostle Paul writes the following:

knowing, beloved brethren, your election by God.

And the word for “election” here means “divine selection or being chosen”, but the amazing thing is that Paul follows up this statement with the reason “why” he knows that they have been elected by God for salvation. In verse five we read:

For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance,

So, what is so important about this you might ask. Anyone can “preach” the word or the gospel of salvation but it always takes the power of the Holy Spirit to effectually make it work in saving the elect. Again, Paul makes this comparison in the very next chapter in 1 Thessalonians and in verse 13 we read:

13 For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe.

It is because of the Word, working in an effective manner in those whom God chooses, do they believe for “faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. (Romans 10: 17). The question, then, is this. Who are they who will hear? The answer is quite easy. In the Gospel of John and in Chapter 8 Jesus is talking to the Pharisees and discussing with them about Who He is. I won’t quote the whole of Scripture, especially verses 42 through 47, you can look that up yourself, for the important verse at which we must look is the latter part of verse 46 and then verse 47. For in them we read the following:

46  ….. why do you not believe Me? 47 He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God.”

By these verses we see very clearly that unless one belongs to God they will not “hear” the words of God. In addition in Chapter 10 of the Gospel of John Jesus makes another very clear statement. In talking about being the “Good Shepherd” Jesus says this in verses 14 through 16:

14 I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. 15 As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 16 And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.

His sheep – they who belong to Him – will hear His voice and will respond to Him in an effectual and favorable way of submission to His Lordship, and in the receiving of the forgiveness of sins and salvation from facing the wrath of God. As Jesus says in chapter 6: 37 of the Gospel of John:

37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.

All who are named in God’s election, the Word of God will work in them in a powerful way in making them alive in the spirit, in giving them a new heart that will grant them the ability to respond to the call of the Good Shepherd, and they will “hear” his voice and will come to Him and follow Him; all because God has chosen to elect they who will be saved. Even though no one deserves to be saved.

Yes, we can know God’s elect. For only in them will we see that the “gospel did not come to them in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance,”. God does elect they who will be saved. If He does not do so… no one would be saved. For man, of his own will, would never choose to be saved.

Are you among God’s elect? Did the Word of God come to you in power with the effectual working of the Holy Spirit? If you have confessed with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and have believed in your heart that God the Father has raised Him from the dead, and if you have you called upon Jesus as Lord in submission to Him then you can know that you have the assurance of God’s saving grace and that you, too, have been forgiven for your sins and are now in God’s hands for all eternity. That is the assurance of God’s working power in your salvation because you are among the elect of God..

 

Written by Glenn Riffey

January 10, 2016 at 7:56 pm

Born Again By The Word Of God

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As a Biblical Student of Reformation Theology, believing in the doctrine of election, I am often asked how can I believe in being an Evangelical and doing the work of an Evangelist? My response is to say, “It is easy.” … :-)

“Easy?” they will say, “how can it be easy if God has already chosen who will be saved?” At this point I begin to remind them of a few scripture verses.

Remember how Paul first went to Corinth? In a dream God told him in Acts 18:

Now the Lord spoke to Paul in the night by a vision, “Do not be afraid, but speak, and do not keep silent; 10 for I am with you, and no one will attack you to hurt you; for I have many people in this city.” 11 And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

God told Paul that He had “many people in this city.” and Paul stayed there for more than a year preaching the Word to them. It was through that preaching that God saved those who were “His” people. Only by hearing the Word of God can anyone be born again by the Spirit of God.

In Romans 10: 17 Paul says the following:

17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

The Word of God is two-fold. First there is the written or spoken Word of God, that His disciples are commanded to share with the world, and second there is Jesus Himself, Who is the Word of God (see John 1:1), it is He Who works through the Holy Spirit to give understanding of the Gospel and opens their heart to receive it and to respond to it. As all who are saved receives a measure of faith, it needs to be applied – first, in order for it to work; so that one can respond with the faith needed in believing the gospel of Jesus.

In Ephesians 2: 8, 9 Paul writes the following:

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

This is why Paul can also write in that same chapter, but in verse 1 the following:

And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins,

Since we are spiritually dead in our sinful nature, and cannot understand or respond favorably to anything of God, we first need to be made spiritually alive in order to respond as God wants of us. It is because of the Word coming into our hearts and taking out the old one and giving us a new heart, a soft, welcoming and receiving heart that one becomes willing to respond to the Word, to be able to cry out to Jesus for forgiveness for our sins and to be willing to submit to Him as Lord in order for Him to be our Savior.

However, in order for all of this to happen we first need to hear the Word of God so that we can have the faith that is needed to be able to believe and be saved from the wrath of God that is to come in the end times.

Yes, I do believe in the doctrine of election but I also know that God has people, everywhere, whom He intends to save, but it takes for them to hear the Word in order for that to be achieved. As Paul tells it in Romans 10:

14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? 15 And how shall they preach unless they are sent?

How about you? Do you want to be forgiven for your sinfulness and be given the gift of salvation? It is as easy as doing what these verses in Romans 10: 8-10 says:

“The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

How much more can this be any easier? Just call upon Jesus and proclaim Him to be Lord. Confess your sinfulness and believe with your heart that God has raised Jesus from the dead and you, too, will find out that you have been given the gift of salvation, and that you have been born again into the family of God.

 

Written by Glenn Riffey

December 6, 2015 at 7:38 pm

To Whom Do You Give Thanks?

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When something good happens and you want to give thanks for what it is, who is it to whom you give thanks?

All that we have has not come from our own doing, nor has it come from what ever riches – though little or much – we may have at any given moment in our lives. If, then, what we have that is counted as something for which we give thanks, has not come from our own abilities or wealth, from where has it come? In 1 Timothy 6:17 we read:

“Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy.”

In this verse, the Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit tells us that anything that we have that is considered good and is something in which we can enjoy has not come from anything we have done but from God. Even the wealth, no matter what level of wealth it is, also comes from God through what ever means that He chooses. In Deuteronomy 8: 11-14 & 17-18 we read this:

11 “Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today, 12 lest—when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them; 13 and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and your gold are multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied; 14 when your heart is lifted up, and you forget the Lord your God…

17 then you say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.’ 18 “And you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth…

It is not by your might or power by which you have all that you do. It is by God’s hand that you have what you do for it is from Him that we receive all things to enjoy. And since we receive these gifts from God is it not right to give Him thanks for what we have? In prayers always should we give thanks because it is pleasing to God so to do.

In 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18 we read:

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

So, give thanks with a grateful heart, for all good things come from God and it is to God to Whom we should give thanks. Even if you are not a child of God, that is a disciple of Jesus – one who is called a Christian – you should also give thanks for God brings good on all people. However, if you want to feel the full “love” of God, to understand, know and be given forgiveness for our sins so that we can experience the love of God personally then you must become a child of God. Otherwise, you may receive from God but, without becoming a child of God, you will never know the why of God through His love.

In 1 John 3: 1 we read:

“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.”

You may not be a child of God and you still may want to give God thanks, but what good is it to do so without knowing the love of God? As a child of God you can give thanks with love to the one who loves you as being one of His children. One who has believed in His Son Jesus and has submitted to Him not only as Lord but has received Him as Savior; being forgiven for your sins and given welcome access to knowing the love of God. Only then will you be able to know what manner of love God has bestowed upon you.

This then is the answer to the question of “To Whom Do You Give Thanks?” It is to God to whom we should give thanks. To God be the glory…

Written by Glenn Riffey

November 8, 2015 at 7:17 pm

Do Not Say “God Loves You!” – Unless…..

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How many times have you heard a well-meaning Christian – Pastor or not – tell someone “God Loves You!” ? Most likely it is said to someone who is not a disciple of Jesus. Someone who does not love God nor has submitted to Jesus as Lord and Savior.

However, you really should “not” say that to someone “UNLESS”… unless they are a disciple of Jesus. Here is why.

I am sure you have heard it said that God loves everyone and just about all of the time it is based on John 3:16 but, have we all mis-understood that scripture? To find out why John 3:16 is not talking about individuals please read the article at the following link:

Have We All Mis-Understood John 3:16…

In actuality God does love individuals but who are these people whom God loves?

Let me just list a few scripture verses and you should be able to figure out for yourself who it is whom God loves… and why.

John 13: 1

Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.

John 14: 21

He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”

John 14: 23

Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.

John 17: 20 – 23

20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 23 I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

In short, just look at these phrases…

having loved His own who were in the world,

he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him

“If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him

that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

God loves only they who are disciples of Jesus; who are obedient to Him and love Him. You see, God does “not” love everyone, as you have been told so many times. His love is only for born again believers in Jesus. These verses are very clear in that point and if you still do not believe it is because you do not understand what God is saying in His Word, nor do you want to do so because it is against what you have been made to believe; believing in something that is not in the Bible.

Jesus loved His own who were in the world. Whoever loves Jesus will be loved by the Father and whoever the Father loves Jesus also will love. They who love Jesus and keeps His word will be loved by the Father. The thing is the world is supposed to know that the Father has sent Jesus and that only they who believe in Him is loved by the Father as the Father loves Jesus and Jesus, too, will love them… and only them. For they are His own who are in the world.

Are you loved by God? Do you believe in Jesus and are obedient to Him? Do you love and cherish the salvation that God has so graciously given to you? Then, do not say to any and everyone that God loves you. If they are “NOT” disciples of Jesus you are only deceiving them and are actually lying to them. Instead, tell them that they can “know” the love of God and feel the kind of sweet love that only Jesus can give, and then tell them how they, too, can receive this love of God by submitting to Jesus as Lord and Savior.

So, do not say that “God loves you” – unless … unless you know for sure that the one to whom you are talking is a true disciples of Jesus and are a child of God. You see, God does love, but He only loves they who love Jesus. We know He does because, in His Word, He has told us so…

 

Written by Glenn Riffey

October 11, 2015 at 6:21 pm

The Kentucky County Clerk and Faith

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I am sure that you have heard about the Kentucky County Clerk, Kim Davis, who went to jail for refusing to issue marriage licenses, not just to homosexuals, but to anyone who wanted a license. The question is why and what does she want? The answer is very simple. First read the following passage from Romans 1: 18-32. It may seem long but unless you understand from where she is coming you will not be able to understand her reasoning for refusing to issuing the licenses.

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.

I do not have to explain these verses. If you do not understand what they are saying it is only because you do not want to believe what you are reading. However, the very last verses is the immediately important one for a Christian. In short, anyone who just accepts the sinful activities of others and says that it is OK for them to do so, are just as guilty of those sins as if they had participated in doing the same.

By having her name on the marriage licenses, even if she did not issue them herself, in her belief she is just as guilty as they who are participating in the sin. In a September 8th news article by CBS news they wrote the following:

“Davis, an apostolic Christian, believes gay marriage is a sin. She also believes it would be a sin for her to issue a marriage license to a same-sex couple because the licenses are issued under her authority.”

All she wants is for her name “Not” be on those marriage licenses and, as long as she did not have to issue them, she would be OK if someone else in the Clerks office would do so. This way she is not participating in this sinful activity by agreeing to allow homosexuals to marry; which does go against Christian teachings, as found in the Bible, and would by denying Mrs. Davis her first amendment right of practicing her religion. You know, “prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

The question for you is twofold. First, if homosexuals can demand their rights, why cannot Christians also demand theirs? Second, who are “you” going to obey – God or man? Maybe you should go back and read the above verses again. Even if you do not participate in homosexual activity, just by going along with them and saying that it is OK, makes you just as guilty of that sin as if you also participate in it as well.

I would advise you to answer very carefully as your answer may determine your eternal destiny…

 

Written by Glenn Riffey

September 12, 2015 at 4:00 pm

How Is One Born Again?

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In the Gospel of John, chapter 3 we read the following:

There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”

3Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

And in verse 5 Jesus said this:

“Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

These phrases stump so many people. Can you blame them? Even Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews, was stumped. Born Again? What does it mean to be “born again” and how does this happen? Well, these are very good questions and let us see if we can talk about this in basic every day language.

In Ephesians we read the following:

Ephesians 2:1

And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins

Basically, because of our sin nature we are spiritually dead towards God. All of us were born this way. In fact everyone down through the ages was born with a sin nature and spiritually are dead towards God. It is for this reason that we can read the results of being dead in trespasses and sins in this passage from Romans:

Romans 3:10-12

10 As it is written:

“There is none righteous, no, not one;
11 There is none who understands;
There is none who seeks after God.
12 They have all turned aside;
They have together become unprofitable;
There is none who does good, no, not one.”

Being spiritually dead in our sins separates us from God and unless we are “born again” in the spirit we will never see God, we will never want God and we will never enter Heaven. So, the need to “born again” is very important and that is the reason why Jesus started from this point with Nicodemus and to impress upon him the need for being so.

Knowing about the need for being “born again” is one thing and it can happen without knowing how it happens. In fact, it always happens without the knowledge of it actually happening until after it happens. A very good example of how this works actually comes from the Bible and it is something that Jesus did in front of many people, and this one time occurrence by Jesus is a specific and quite plain way of how being “born again” happens according to the Reformed view of salvation.

This one event by Jesus shows that He not only has power over life but life in a spiritual way as well. Both physical and spiritual life comes only by way of Jesus. Maybe that is why He said that “no one comes to the Father except by me”.

In John 11 we read the story about Lazarus, a close friend of Jesus, about he became sick and died. Then after he had been in the grave for four days Jesus finally came by to visit the sisters of Lazarus named Mary and Martha, and He had them lead Him to his tomb. Upon His arrival we read the following:

38 Then Jesus, again groaning in Himself, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”

Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.”

40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” 41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. 42 And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.” 43 Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” 44 And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with grave-clothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.”

Now where Lazarus lay dead there were also other dead people in their graves around him. So, the first thing that Jesus did was to call out the name of Lazarus and command him to “come forth”. Had He not done so, everyone would have come forth out of the graves. But Jesus specifically called forth Lazarus; He chose Lazarus and no one else.

Now stop and think about this for a moment. When Jesus called out the name of Lazarus and commanded him to come forth was there anything within the body of Lazarus to allow him to respond? Of course not! For he was dead and there was no life within that dead body. Before Lazarus could respond in any way, shape or form he “first” had to have been given life in order to hear the command of Jesus and to obey that command to come forth.

The same is for anyone who needs to be spiritually “born again”. In John 8 you can read where Jesus tells the Pharisees that they cannot understand what He says, nor can they listen to Him as He speaks spiritual things and because of that they cannot “hear” Him, and the reason they cannot do any of this is that they are spiritually dead. They first need to be made spiritually alive to be able to respond at all.

In John 10 where Jesus is talking to the people about His sheep and how they hear His voice and obey Him to follow Him we read we read this about “why” they believe:

25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. 26 But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.  27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish.

Lazarus was a sheep of Jesus. Just like all of us who are truly “born again” by the Spirit of God. Unless Jesus first gives us life, that is, unless we are “first” Born Again we cannot hear His voice and follow the command to “come forth”, we cannot understand what He is saying, since we cannot hear Him, and we cannot, and will not, believe in Him as Lord and Savior of all who will be “born again” because we are “dead in trespasses and sins and, in that state, we do not want God nor desire Him.

Being spiritually dead in our spiritual grave the first thing that must be done to us is to be given life, and that is the act of being “born again”. Once Jesus calls us by name, gives us life, then, and only then, can we hear Him, believe in Him and become willing to obey the command to “come forth”, and we do obey and we come forth gladly.

In short, faith in Jesus is the action of the heart, having first been quickened (born again) by the sovereign grace of God. That is why Jesus was so adamant about being “born again”. Without it you will not hear, understand, and obey the command to “come forth” and be given the right to enter into Heaven. How about you? Has Jesus specifically called you by name to “come forth”? Have you truly been “born again” by the Spirit of God?

As Jesus impressed upon Nicodemus about the need to be “born again”, I do the same to you. You must be “born again” if you want to enter Heaven.

I pray that today, even right now, that this wonderful phenomenon will happen to you in a most personal, knowing and loving way, and that you will “come forth” to be with Jesus.

 

Written by Glenn Riffey

August 9, 2015 at 8:53 pm

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