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  • Do we have any say on the condition of our hearts?

    Im going to say something that I believe most here can relate to. I have prayed many times to Jesus to set me free from all of my sin. I know by faith I can overcome any and all sin as Christ has set us free, but what i mean is that i dont even want to DESIRE to do evil or sin. I wish so badly that God would just remove all sinful inclinations out of my body so i can live the life He wants from me, but every day i find myself fighting to live righteoussly, sometimes succeeding, sometimes failing.

    My question is, how much control do we have over our own hearts?? I believe that if i somehow could intensify my love for God from my heart i would intensify my hatred and rebellion against evil and sin.

    It can be so discouraging when i just simply do what is right, but inside not always wanting to do it. It makes me feel like a religious robot sometimes, simply obeying commands i dont even want to obey. Dont get me wrong, i want to obey God, but i want to DESIRE to obey more

    I have been praying for about a month now and i just dont see a whole lot of change on the inside. It is very discouraging. Does anybody have a story or maybe can share on how your love for God has grown, or how you love God more? It is my belief that God want me to DESIRE to obey Him, not just obey Him because He said so.

    The scary thing is that I dont have any power to change my own heart, only God can do that. It scares me because sometimes i wonder if He ever will change it, as it has been awhile since i have felt a very strong love for God

    Someone please help out if you can

  • #2
    Read this and let me know what you think:

    Romans 7: 21-"So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22For in my inner being I delight in God's law; 23but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!"
    .................The message of the cross divides the human race." ~MW~

    ........ ... " LORD, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant..."
    .................................................. .................................................. ...Nehemiah 1:11a



    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by karenoka27 View Post
      Read this and let me know what you think:

      Romans 7: 21-"So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22For in my inner being I delight in God's law; 23but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!"
      lol i think that describes me to the T. The only problem however is that i have been praying to Jesus to change my heart and it doesnt seem like there has been a whole lot of improvement. There has been SOME improvement though, to the Glory of Christ. I was blessed to hear an aquaintance mention to me that she had seen a change in my life. The way i talked was different. I used to tell vulgar jokes and now i was talking about acceptance in Christ. Some of the things I engaged in earlier this year before i got saved were down right shameful, and im glad i have been completley changed from these things. but not everything has changed yet.

      I am finding out that i am horrifically selfish and self-centered. I actually noticed many times this week how selfish i really can be. I am extremely lazy (21 year old male college student). I also am still fighting against lust, which i know God hates and should have no part in the Christian life. I can be very mean spirited and sarcastic at times and it just scares me at times. If i am saved why am i still acting like this? And if im not saved, why not? I have prayed to Jesus to frogive me and transform me and to this day i believe Him to be the One and ONly Way and i am trusting in Him, however it is frightening because there should be far more change than this. It feels like God is being very silent with me lately and i hate it. I just want Him to show me a sign or show me some encouraging thing or Word or something. I just feel like im not getting anything from God, like im not connected or something

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by reformedct View Post
        Im going to say something that I believe most here can relate to. I have prayed many times to Jesus to set me free from all of my sin. I know by faith I can overcome any and all sin as Christ has set us free, but what i mean is that i dont even want to DESIRE to do evil or sin. I wish so badly that God would just remove all sinful inclinations out of my body so i can live the life He wants from me, but every day i find myself fighting to live righteoussly, sometimes succeeding, sometimes failing.

        My question is, how much control do we have over our own hearts?? I believe that if i somehow could intensify my love for God from my heart i would intensify my hatred and rebellion against evil and sin.

        It can be so discouraging when i just simply do what is right, but inside not always wanting to do it. It makes me feel like a religious robot sometimes, simply obeying commands i dont even want to obey. Dont get me wrong, i want to obey God, but i want to DESIRE to obey more

        I have been praying for about a month now and i just dont see a whole lot of change on the inside. It is very discouraging. Does anybody have a story or maybe can share on how your love for God has grown, or how you love God more? It is my belief that God want me to DESIRE to obey Him, not just obey Him because He said so.

        The scary thing is that I dont have any power to change my own heart, only God can do that. It scares me because sometimes i wonder if He ever will change it, as it has been awhile since i have felt a very strong love for God

        Someone please help out if you can
        What about God keeps you from loving Him more? Maybe you have a wrong belief about God. I am of the opinion that you can only love Him to the degree that you believe He loves you. (Not to the degree that He loves you but to the degree that you believe He loves you.)

        My love for Him has grown by leaps and bounds. When I learned that there was nothing that I could do to make Him love me more and nothing I could do to make Him love me less I fell in love with Him all over again. My love is much deeper this time around.

        The words to a song called Serve Hymn came to mind. Its by a guy named Andrew Peterson.

        High this mountain, broad this sea
        Still, my sin ran deeper
        Grave offense my soul did wreak
        Against creation's keeper
        But see what power so fell and fair
        Has stayed His holy justice
        God Himself all Hell did bear
        How great His love for us is


        (chorus)
        So serve Him, O serve Him
        He who brings the morning
        O serve Him, Only serve Him
        He who brings the morning

        Ev'ry hour is a precious boon
        Ev'ry breath is a mercy
        Ev'ry glimpse of yonder moon
        A balm upon this journey
        How vast the heavens above this place
        So small beneath His glory
        Still He stooped and showed His face
        And poured His mercy o'er me

        Jesus, our Messiah King
        For those who don't deserve Him
        Conquered death all life to bring
        So seek His face and serve Him
        O serve Him

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by reformedct View Post
          lol i think that describes me to the T. The only problem however is that i have been praying to Jesus to change my heart and it doesnt seem like there has been a whole lot of improvement. There has been SOME improvement though, to the Glory of Christ. I was blessed to hear an aquaintance mention to me that she had seen a change in my life. The way i talked was different. I used to tell vulgar jokes and now i was talking about acceptance in Christ. Some of the things I engaged in earlier this year before i got saved were down right shameful, and im glad i have been completley changed from these things. but not everything has changed yet.

          I am finding out that i am horrifically selfish and self-centered. I actually noticed many times this week how selfish i really can be. I am extremely lazy (21 year old male college student). I also am still fighting against lust, which i know God hates and should have no part in the Christian life. I can be very mean spirited and sarcastic at times and it just scares me at times. If i am saved why am i still acting like this? And if im not saved, why not? I have prayed to Jesus to frogive me and transform me and to this day i believe Him to be the One and ONly Way and i am trusting in Him, however it is frightening because there should be far more change than this. It feels like God is being very silent with me lately and i hate it. I just want Him to show me a sign or show me some encouraging thing or Word or something. I just feel like im not getting anything from God, like im not connected or something

          Ravi Zacharis says that God didn't come to make bad people good but to make dead people alive. If you were still dead would we even be having this conversation.

          Ephesians 3.14-21
          For this reason, I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven
          and on earth derives its name, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His
          glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man; so that Christ
          may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
          may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height
          and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be
          filled up to all the fulness of God
          . Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly
          beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be
          the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.
          NASB

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by reformedct View Post
            lol i think that describes me to the T. The only problem however is that i have been praying to Jesus to change my heart and it doesnt seem like there has been a whole lot of improvement. There has been SOME improvement though, to the Glory of Christ. I was blessed to hear an aquaintance mention to me that she had seen a change in my life. The way i talked was different. I used to tell vulgar jokes and now i was talking about acceptance in Christ. Some of the things I engaged in earlier this year before i got saved were down right shameful, and im glad i have been completley changed from these things. but not everything has changed yet.

            I am finding out that i am horrifically selfish and self-centered. I actually noticed many times this week how selfish i really can be. I am extremely lazy (21 year old male college student). I also am still fighting against lust, which i know God hates and should have no part in the Christian life. I can be very mean spirited and sarcastic at times and it just scares me at times. If i am saved why am i still acting like this? And if im not saved, why not? I have prayed to Jesus to frogive me and transform me and to this day i believe Him to be the One and ONly Way and i am trusting in Him, however it is frightening because there should be far more change than this. It feels like God is being very silent with me lately and i hate it. I just want Him to show me a sign or show me some encouraging thing or Word or something. I just feel like im not getting anything from God, like im not connected or something
            I believe He is changing your heart. What He is doing is showing you first what you are seeing in yourself. Our Lord wants us to hate sin. It is only when we see those things in us can we even see them as sin and begin to hate what God does. It's those subtle things like selfishness and being self centered that many don't even recognize as sin. I think you are on the right road my friend.
            Psalm 139:23-24-"Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts,See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."
            .................The message of the cross divides the human race." ~MW~

            ........ ... " LORD, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant..."
            .................................................. .................................................. ...Nehemiah 1:11a



            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by mikebr View Post
              Ravi Zacharis says that God didn't come to make bad people good but to make dead people alive. If you were still dead would we even be having this conversation.
              NASB
              This reminds me of something I heard in church. The pastor said, "may people see church not as a place for saints,but as a hospital for sinners."
              .................The message of the cross divides the human race." ~MW~

              ........ ... " LORD, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant..."
              .................................................. .................................................. ...Nehemiah 1:11a



              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by karenoka27 View Post
                This reminds me of something I heard in church. The pastor said, "may people see church not as a place for saints,but as a hospital for sinners."

                And Jesus answered and said to them, "It is not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I must say that most of my frustration comes from my current confusion over salvation and how it works.

                  Do we get saved and stop sinning all together? if this is true i have never been saved

                  What happens when we sin? Do we lose it all?

                  WHat happens when we are not experiencing any great deal of growth? Obviously we should be concerned whether or not we are saved

                  I think much frustration comes from my confusion toward my standing in Gods eyes and how my relationship with Him works.

                  I dont really understand repentance. To what degree must we repent before we believe? does repent mean to never sin again or never do what we did before again? if so, what does that mean when we sin? Does that mean our orignal repentance was false?

                  there are just alot of questions and unfrotunately if you ask 50 christians for an answer you will get 50 different answers. When i read the Bible there are so many ways that one can interpret a cripture that it doesnt really help much

                  this confusion leads to a hesitancy to obey God. If i am not saved, why should i obey? there is no point if i am not saved right? but at the same time, I dont want to live a life of sin either. Sin may have temporary cheap thrills type pleasure, but in the end i just want Jesus. thats all. I just want Jesus to show up in my room and talk to me. I know it sounds dumb and corny but if i could just talk to Jesus face to face i feel that i would be OK.

                  How can i know that the Spirit is guiding me? When i read the Scriptures and come to a certain understanding, here come a horde of Christians saying my interpretation is wrong. its just so frustrating. I wish i could just talk to God in person one on one. Salvation is not something i wanna cruise through. I want to know everything about it. How it works from top to bottom. I need to know the paramaters of salvation so i can locate myself and see if i am indeed in the boundaries of salvation. I hate ambiguity in the area of this matter

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Paul talks about being an enemy in your mind. Repentance is a change of mind and the kindness of God leads us to repentance. Do you believe that God is kind? Do you believe that He loves you unconditionally? Do you need to change the way you think about God? Read 1Corinthians 13 and every where it says love put God in its place. Do you believe those things about God? When you do you will find rest and peace. This will change you.

                    4 God is patient, God is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, 5 does not act unbecomingly; He does not seek His own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, 6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
                    8 God never fails

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I believe you are saved. You have the Holy Spirit within you convicting your heart of sin. We have a nature in our flesh that fights against our spirit while we are alive. It is a constant battle within.
                      Matthew 26:41-"Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak."
                      When you come to a message board such as this,you will get different opinions. I too get frustrated as people often speak as one who knows the mind of God. God challenged Job for thinking he knew Him.
                      Don't get discouraged. It really is a good thing when we come to the end of ourselves and say like Isaiah in Isaiah 6:5-"Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts."

                      You are saved if you know without a doubt that you are a sinner. You know that there is no hope for you to be in the presence of God because your sin keeps you separated. However, you also know that God sent His Son Jesus Christ to this earth to do what man could not do for himself. He paid the penalty for sin by dying on the cross for you. He was then buried and rose again,conquering death once and for all who believe in Him!
                      .................The message of the cross divides the human race." ~MW~

                      ........ ... " LORD, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant..."
                      .................................................. .................................................. ...Nehemiah 1:11a



                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hint: Heart, cleansed by blood,

                        Hint 2. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
                        (1Jn 1:9)

                        Hint 3. How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
                        (Heb 9:14)

                        ♪ Each day may Christ become clearer, His Cross dearer, Our Hope nearer. ♫

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by reformedct View Post
                          I must say that most of my frustration comes from my current confusion over salvation and how it works.

                          Do we get saved and stop sinning all together? if this is true i have never been saved

                          What happens when we sin? Do we lose it all?

                          WHat happens when we are not experiencing any great deal of growth? Obviously we should be concerned whether or not we are saved

                          I think much frustration comes from my confusion toward my standing in Gods eyes and how my relationship with Him works.

                          I dont really understand repentance. To what degree must we repent before we believe? does repent mean to never sin again or never do what we did before again? if so, what does that mean when we sin? Does that mean our orignal repentance was false?

                          there are just alot of questions and unfrotunately if you ask 50 christians for an answer you will get 50 different answers. When i read the Bible there are so many ways that one can interpret a cripture that it doesnt really help much

                          this confusion leads to a hesitancy to obey God. If i am not saved, why should i obey? there is no point if i am not saved right? but at the same time, I dont want to live a life of sin either. Sin may have temporary cheap thrills type pleasure, but in the end i just want Jesus. thats all. I just want Jesus to show up in my room and talk to me. I know it sounds dumb and corny but if i could just talk to Jesus face to face i feel that i would be OK.

                          How can i know that the Spirit is guiding me? When i read the Scriptures and come to a certain understanding, here come a horde of Christians saying my interpretation is wrong. its just so frustrating. I wish i could just talk to God in person one on one. Salvation is not something i wanna cruise through. I want to know everything about it. How it works from top to bottom. I need to know the paramaters of salvation so i can locate myself and see if i am indeed in the boundaries of salvation. I hate ambiguity in the area of this matter
                          This will be long and several post... but if you read this then hopefully you will understand how to proceed without getting caught up in the "I wonder" trap.

                          A.W. Tozer said, “To escape the error of salvation by works we have fallen into the opposite error of salvation without obedience.”

                          Romans 6:16 Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness?
                          17 But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed,
                          18 and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.
                          19 I am speaking in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness, resulting in further lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness, resulting in sanctification.
                          20 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.
                          21 Therefore what benefit were you then deriving from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the outcome of those things is death.
                          22 But now having been freed from sin and enslaved to God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome, eternal life.
                          23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.



                          NO PAIN NO GAIN

                          When we are physically out of shape and then decide that we are going to change our ways we find that in order to correct this we must endure significant pain. There is never anything easy about training in the beginning stages. However, disciplined training leads to physical agility and strength. It can even make a difference in a persons overall health. But when you get through the initial struggle and discomfort of putting your body into submission you will find that you begin to actually excel at and enjoy the physical activity. By comparison... spiritual fitness is by far more important.

                          1 Timothy 4:7 But have nothing to do with worldly fables fit only for old women. On the other hand, discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness;
                          8 for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.
                          9 It is a trustworthy statement deserving full acceptance.
                          10 For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers.


                          1 Corinthians 9:24 ¶Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.


                          You must make the decision; either you will enter the race and run or you will sit on the sideline and be a mere spectator.

                          25 And everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.
                          26 Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air;
                          27 but I buffet my body and make it my slave, lest possibly, after I have preached to others, I myself should be disqualified.


                          Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
                          2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.



                          GOING FOR THE PRIZE WITHOUT RUNNING THE RACE


                          Scott Peck said, “There are many people who... want, and believe that it is possible to skip over the discipline, to find an easy shortcut to discipline. Often they attempt to attain it by simply imitating the superficiality of saints... Some even believe that by such imitation they have really become saints and prophets, and are unable to acknowledge that they are still children and they face the painful fact that they must start at the beginning and go through the middle.”


                          2 Peter 1:5 Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge;
                          6 and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness;
                          7 and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love.
                          8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
                          9 For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins.
                          10 Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble;



                          Today we try to take the new converts from faith and we tell them that now they must go out there and love everyone. We base this on the fact that Jesus said the two greatest commandments is to love God with all of your heart.... and love your neighbor as you love yourself. While this is certainly true we must understand what Peter is telling us here.

                          Faith is where it all begins. We BELIEVE in Jesus and this is the starting line. Love is the finish line.

                          When speaking of love we naturally think of 1 Corinthians 13. In this passage we can easily see that the prize is not the gifts. Paul makes this clear because he states that there will come a time when the need for the gifts will cease. But love... it will never stop. The key to all of this can be found in the first verse of the 14th chapter... “PURSUE LOVE.” That is what we are running after... the finish line. Peter clearly understood this. Faith is the start and love is the finish line.

                          Notice though that all of the other stuff in between faith and love. In between the starting line and the finish line. This is why we must train and we can clearly see that there is no shortcut between the two. You cannot love everyone until you first love your Christian brothers and sisters. You cannot love everyone until first you achieve self-control, etc.

                          This is our training ground. This is where we'll start and in the end... we will all understand the importance of following these various steps and doing so in proper order. So tomorrow we start some basic training... then on to maturity.


                          Visit our new website
                          ! The Blog might interest some.. and Lord help me!!!... for those that twitter... there as well.

                          A.W. Tozer said,
                          "To escape the error of salvation by works we have fallen into the opposite error of salvation without obedience.”

                          GO.... SERVE YOUR KING!

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                          • #14
                            BASIC TRAINING

                            If I were to ask you what was the first decision that every person MUST make before becoming a Christian most of you would say that you must simply believe. That thinking however can cause eternal problems.


                            John 2:23 ¶Now when He was in Jerusalem at the Passover, during the feast, many believed in His name, beholding His signs which He was doing.
                            24 But Jesus, on His part, was not entrusting Himself to them, for He knew all men,
                            25 and because He did not need anyone to bear witness concerning man for He Himself knew what was in man.


                            We can see here that there are many that actually believed in Jesus however knowing their hearts... Jesus didn’t commit himself to them. Look at this passage... right before one of the most known passages of Scripture in John 3:16.

                            Luke 14:26 "If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.
                            27 "Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.
                            28 "For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost, to see if he has enough to complete it?
                            29 "Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation, and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him,
                            30 saying, `This man began to build and was not able to finish.´
                            31 "Or what king, when he sets out to meet another king in battle, will not first sit down and take counsel whether he is strong enough with ten thousand men to encounter the one coming against him with twenty thousand?
                            32 "Or else, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks terms of peace.
                            33 "So therefore, no one of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions.
                            34 "Therefore, salt is good; but if even salt has become tasteless, with what will it be seasoned?
                            35 "It is useless either for the soil or for the manure pile; it is thrown out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear."


                            Jesus tells us that before we BEGIN we should count the cost. This is step one. This is where so many of us messed up. We go out and about and we find people who are sick, lame, and lonely and then we quote a few pet Scriptures and lead them in the sinners’ prayer. What we have failed to do is this; give them the truth, letting them know the price that they will have to pay. Then we need to step back and allow that person to contemplate the cost. Then they can rightly choose.

                            This passage teaches us that we will have to love Jesus more than anything. More than family, friends, even ourselves. Jesus uses the family as an example here because it shows the extreme in which we must love Him. This is how radical this new lifestyle is.

                            The idea that there is a cost to being a disciple of Christ seems to be so foreign to people today that I am always amazed when it manifest itself in the form of shock when I mention it.

                            2 Corinthians 11:23 Are they servants of Christ? (I speak as if insane) I more so; in far more labors, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death.
                            24 Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes.
                            25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep.
                            26 I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren;
                            27 I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure.
                            28 Apart from such external things, there is the daily pressure upon me of concern for all the churches.
                            29 Who is weak without my being weak? Who is led into sin without my intense concern?
                            30 If I have to boast, I will boast of what pertains to my weakness.
                            31 The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, He who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying.
                            32 In Damascus the ethnarch under Aretas the king was guarding the city of the Damascenes in order to seize me,
                            33 and I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall, and so escaped his hands.


                            This is the type of cost. No, you may not have to go through the exact things that the Apostle Paul went through, yet the possibility does certainly exist. We must consider this. How much do we love Jesus? Enough to go through these things? We have been comfortable, especially in the Western World, and have been able to practice Christianity with very little fear of any such thing as this. But times are changing. Columbine High School comes to mind. The young lady that took the stand for Jesus even while facing death. She was faced with a moment of truth here and she chose to take a stand for Jesus even at the cost of her natural life. Her reward in heaven is great. The option that she had... deny Christ and live. Stand for Christ and die.

                            Matthew 10:33 "But whoever shall deny Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven.

                            2 Timothy 2:12 If we endure, we shall also reign with Him; If we deny Him, He also will deny us;


                            Very straightforward... no real room for misinterpretation. Certainly when we stand before God we will be standing before a Just God. I can only tell you what the Scripture says and this is an example of a young lady that counted the cost and made the right choice... loving Christ even more than her own life. To deny Christ might have saved her on this earth but her eternal life would have resulted in death had these young boys killed her regardless of her stand.

                            Few of us will likely be faced with the issue of dying for the cause of Christ. Knowing that we will say that there is no way that we would ever deny Christ. But then that begs the question... how do you live your life?

                            Titus 1:16 They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him, being detestable and disobedient, and worthless for any good deed.

                            If your lifestyle is contrary to godliness then you are in fact denying Christ.

                            We have filled the churches up today with converts who have said the sinners prayer but they have never truly counted the cost. They have said the prayer but they haven’t truly repented and turned to God. The sad reality is that we have been responsible for sending more people to hell than we will ever get to heaven. Get people to “convert” and then wait a few months and look around. Where are they? We are filling hell with backsliders. All because we failed to share with them the cost.

                            If a person decides that they understand the cost and they are willing to pay that price then it is assured that they have faith and are at that starting line.


                            Visit our new website
                            ! The Blog might interest some.. and Lord help me!!!... for those that twitter... there as well.

                            A.W. Tozer said,
                            "To escape the error of salvation by works we have fallen into the opposite error of salvation without obedience.”

                            GO.... SERVE YOUR KING!

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                            • #15
                              VIRTUE

                              This word is often confused with godliness. Although it is naturally a trait that one would see in a godly person that is not what this word means. The classic Greek definition here is just simply this... the God given ability to perform heroic deeds. In other words it is the God given ability to perform deeds of excellence. In other words we become an asset to society.

                              We now desire to live a good life, and we have a new standard of conduct. There is a world full of good people who do good things and act like they should. There are also those that are immoral as the day is long. But once you have true faith in Jesus then something happens inside of them. They are recipients of grace and that grace is teaching them things and the Holy Spirit is doing a good work on them.

                              It doesn’t say that God will give you virtue. It tells us that we are to add to our faith virtue. It is something that we have to work on. But always remember on each of these steps what it says in the third verse of 2 Peter 1.

                              2 Peter 1:3 seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.

                              God has given to us the diving power that we need to attain these things. He has supplied us with everything that we need. It is as simple as that really and it is also simply up to us to use this divine power and obtain these things.


                              Visit our new website
                              ! The Blog might interest some.. and Lord help me!!!... for those that twitter... there as well.

                              A.W. Tozer said,
                              "To escape the error of salvation by works we have fallen into the opposite error of salvation without obedience.”

                              GO.... SERVE YOUR KING!

                              Comment

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