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Is God In Control?

I feel like Amos In Amos 7:14 when He says I am not a prophet nor the son of a Prophet. I don’t feel eloquent and intelligent. However, I am compelled to share with you this simple thought.

Is God in Control?

Is God in control of the Country? Is God in Control of this Nation? Is God in Control of your Life when it is falling apart?

In Job 38 God answered Job in all of his despair. I want to share with you verse 4 from Job 38. God says to Job, “Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if thou hast understanding.” The fact that God has been here from the very foundation of the earth really hit me today. God was here before the 2020 election, the COVID-19 crisis and whatever I am personally facing. From the foundation of the earth and before God was present. God has been in control from the Garden to this present day. He has been present during wars, famines and horrific tragedies. I don’t completely understand His plan but I refuse to question His control. Isaiah 55:8 says that God’s thoughts are not my thoughts and God’s ways are not my ways. I have come to the understanding that just because I can not make sense of it does not mean that God is not in Control!!!

Control means to have power of influence and direct people’s behavior or the course of events. I still believe that God is in CONTROL!!! Asking if God is in control is not the question, but the question is do I accept God’s control. Can I accept a circumstance that is hard or not what I wanted. Can I accept God thinking something for me that is not what I am thinking for Me. I am surrendered to the mindset that I will relinquish my control to God who is actually in Control.

As I trust God’s control I am believing that He is orchestrating this world in a way that will not bring me to Paradise in this temporal land but will bring me and Believers to that Eternal Relationship with Christ in The Heavenly Kingdom we are promised. God’s Control is about giving me what I want here but getting me to the place that My Hope is in.

If Romans 8:28 is true and all things work together for my good and if Colossians 1:27 is true and Christ in me the hope is of glory then the activities of this life are not about what I want but what God wants to get me to Eternity. So, the question Is God in Control is answered with a resounding YES !!!!! He is in Total Sovereign Control and I am required to Trust

I am embracing Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Lean not on your own understanding. Acknowledge Him in all your ways…..AND He will direct Your path !!!!!!!!! “

GOD IS IN CONTROL WE ARE CALLED TO TRUST

They Didn’t Ask God

The Israelites sampled their provisions but did not inquire of the LORD.

Joshua 9:14

How many times have you asked someone a question and you didn’t get the answer you wanted? If you are like me, there have been times that you have not asked someone a question because you wouldn’t get the answer you wanted. When this is the expected outcome, you simply do not ask the individual a question.

Also, there are times a person believes they know what is best for their lives void from the help of others. Many of people have erred simply because they have not asked for help or direction. We make mistakes because we do not ask for advice. When we believe we know what is best for us, we think we do not need anyone’s assistance.

Here in Joshua 9:14 we see Israel does the same thing. They make an alignment with the Gibeonites on the bases of the Gibeonites goods and not the guidance of God. The Bible shows us that the Gibeonites trick Israel into making an alignment with them. They were not honest. They were not pure, and they completely tricked the people. This covenant ends up costing Israel, and they can only trace their mistake back to the fact that they didn’t Enquire of the Lord.

I want to share with you a couple things in this devotion on Enquiring of the Lord:

  1. Don’t let the Goods fool you
    • The Gibeonites must have given Israel good provisions, and a sob story because it caused them to make bad choices.
    • Satan wants to trick us and cause us to make terrible choices.
    • The Lie of Satan is that the things of this world can make a soul happy.
    • I encourage you to take the view of Moses in Hebrews 11:24 and realize that sin’s pleasure is only for a season.
    • That momentary pleasure will have a lasting effect of …..
      • a habit you never wanted
      • a failed marriage
      • a life never fulfilled for the God given purpose you were designed for
    • Today, Don’t let the goods of Satan fool you to make terrible choices.
  2. Your Decision will definitely Affect You
    • For Israel, they were affected by foolishly making a covenant with the Gibeonites
    • They would have to come to their aid when they called
    • The same for us
      • The decisions you make today without going to the Lord will effect your future
      • The spouse you choose will affect the future
      • The job you choose will affect the future
      • The habits you pick up will affect the future
      • The friends you connect to will affect the future
    • Not a Small Thing
      • Making plans that affect your future is not a small thing.
      • Our decision’s today are so important. It does not matter if they are small or grand, they are connected to our future.
      • The Word is clear about our choices today and how they will affect us. That is why the Bible says:
        • Joshua 24:15 says choose to serve the Lord.
        • The Choice is yours today. Will you choose good or bad?
        • When you choose to serve Christ your future has hope and when you choose to serve this world then your hope is in dispair.
  3. Please Enquire of the Lord
    • Before you are enticed by the goods, and before you affect your future with terrible choices, please Enquire of the Lord!
    • To enquire simply means to ask someone for something.
    • The tragedy of this instance in Joshua is that the children of Israel had seen God’s hand and the need for His help. Yet, when they were making critical alliances with people they did not pray about it.
    • I encourage when reading this to enquire/pray about the decisions in your life.
    • What to enquire about:
      • Enquire about your relationship with God
        • Ask God about your church life
        • Ask God about your spiritual disciplines
        • Our relationship with Christ is the crucial relationship in our lives
      • Enquire about your relationship with people
        • 1 Corinthians 15:33 says Bad company corrupts good character
        • When you surround yourself with individuals that are not following Christ, it affects you
        • Ask God about that boyfriend, girlfriend, wife or husband. It is imperative that we enquire of God before we come into a covenant with other people. Let God lead you and not your desires and emotions.
      • Enquire about your actions in this World
        • Let us find out what we are involved in that causes our relationship with Christ to suffer
        • Ask God today what you should add and what you should take away
        • Enquire of the Lord before
          • the Career path is decided
          • the school is chosen
          • the drink is drunk or the innocence is lost
        • Psalms 24:4 says Show me your ways, Lord Teach me your paths

I encourage you today to Ask God’s guidance before we make decisions right now that can affect our entire future.

May we, from this point forward, never say  that we are where we are because we did not ENQUIRE of the Lord.

We Did Not Inquire Of Him

13 David conferred with each of his officers, the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds. He then said to the whole assembly of Israel, “If it seems good to you and if it is the will of the Lord our God, let us send word far and wide to the rest of our people throughout the territories of Israel, and also to the priests and Levites who are with them in their towns and pasturelands, to come and join us. Let us bring the ark of our God back to us, for we did not inquire of  it during the reign of Saul.”  The whole assembly agreed to do this, because it seemed right to all the people.

 

In this passage, David is bringing the Ark of the Covenant back to Israel. The ark, which represented the presence of God, had been left in a place called Kirjath-jearim. David decided that it would be a good thing to bring the ark back to Israel and the congregation of Israel agreed. Here in verse 3, we see David saying something so simple yet profound. David says that we need to bring the Ark back because when Saul was king Israel didn’t enquire of the Lord. David is showing Israel the reason we are in this condition is because we have not talked to the Lord. Today in this devotion I ask this question. Have you prayed today? Prayer is so pivotal to a Christian’s life. The type of prayer that I am encouraging you to participate in is not meerly asking for something but having a divine communication with Christ where we speak with Him, and He speaks with us. I want to encourage you today to Pray, Pray, Pray.

4 Things I want to point out about Prayer

P – Partnership/ Prayer is to be a partnership between the believer and God. When is the last time we have prayed and listened to what God wants to speak to us? Psalms 46:10 says “Be still and know that He Is God. “ Today pray, and when you pray, know that it is a partnership between you and the Creator.

R – Rewarding/ Prayer is time of Rewarding. The Reward is not always monetary or outward, but the Reward is spiritual. When we pray, we are rewarded with Spiritual, Emotional and Physical Rewards. Hebrews 11:6 says “He is a rewarder of those who dilligently seek Him.” I encourage you to not have a made up mind of what you think prayer will reward you with, but to go in to prayer saying, “God what you want to reward me with ….Do it.”

A – Assuring / Matthew 18:20 says “Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I with them.”  Prayer is assuring to the believer. When we pray and we allow Christ to speak to us through the Spirit and the Word, it is an assuring experience. We are assured that Christ is with us, and we are never alone.

Y – Yielding / Luke 22:42 says “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from Me. Yet not My will, but Yours be done.” I encourage you today to also allow Prayer to be a yielding experience. In this passage, Jesus was saying to God that if there is another way other than the cross I will go, but, I yield to Your will. Proper prayer in Christ’s name will cause the believer to yield to the will of God and not the will of man.

 

Stop just for a moment and pray. If you don’t know where to start, let me help you with the simpliest of prayer found in Matthew 6:

Matthew 6:9-13

“This, then, is how you should pray:

“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.’

 

I am praying for you and please remember to pray. It is one of our greatest weapons as a believer.

The Gift of Christmas

Isaiah 7:14

The Gift that God Gave

I remember a few of my favorite Christmas Gifts:

  • Joe Montana & John Elway football uniforms (A Gift from my Parents)
  • Sega Genesis (A Gift from my Parents)
  • Picture Frame (From my Wife and Kids)
  • Sesame Street Playhouse (Santa-LOL)
  • G.I. Joe Bridge Tank (Santa-LOL
  • Bicycle, Games and all other type of toys.

These gifts were great. However, there are some other gifts that have meant a lot to me because of who gave the gift to me such as:

  • 25th Anniversary Optimus Prime (From one of the teens I pastored)
  • Cufflinks (From Papa Powers)
  • Father’s Day Cards, Hand painted tables and personalized gifts (From my Family)

The thing that sets these presents apart are where they are from. We all expect Christmas gifts as children. However, when something is given to you from someone special, not only is it important but. As a pastor, I treasure the gifts from people that have been encouraged by the ministry God has entrusted me with. As a Father, I love receiving gifts from my children. As a Husband, I cherish the gifts that my wife has given me. All of these are very meaningful because of who gave them to me.

When we look at the Christmas story we must not bypass the words found in Isaiah 7. The Prophet says about the coming Messiah that the Lord Himself was going to give the nation a gift. As we look back to Isaiah’s prophecy and then look to Matthew 1 and the story of Christ’s birth, we discover the importance of this phrase. God took it upon himself to give the world the greatest gift of all…….Jesus Christ our Lord. May we discover  a few things in this season.

God Himself Did This

  • Isaiah 7:14 says that The Lord Himself did this. Isn’t it amazing to realize that God did this Himself. He did not rely on an angel, a prophet or another Ruler. God determined the best way to save mankind was to give the gift Himself.
  • This Gift is special because the God of all creation gave it to whole world. The very God that formed the ocean floor and hung the stars gave us this gift. Jesus was not manufactured nor was he created, but for salvation to be granted, He had to be given.
  • May we not handle this gift of Jesus lightly. The Church today handles their relationship with Christ lightly. Today, let us cherish this precious gift of Jesus. God himself gave us the most precious gift and also the greatest gift anyone could ever receive.

This Gift has signs and shows us how to live

  •  The Wording here gives the idea that the Gift would have a banner hanging over it
  • God’s gift of Jesus Christ was going to have signs Identifying the power He possessed.
  • The signs that we focus on is the following:
    • Virgin will conceive and give birth
      • The miracle of Christ is seen in two forms here
      • He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born. The miracle was not just in the birth but also in the conception
    • His name will be Immanuel.
      • The name reserved for Christ would be Immanuel.
      • This names means “God is with us.” It reminds us that where ever Christ walked it was God on earth.
    • He will eat curds and honey
      • This was the diet of the poor
      • Jesus not only spent time around the outcast of society, but he also came to save the poor of the spiritual society. The one that is lost in sin is poor in their the spirit.

Lessons we can learn

    • Because of Jesus, we can live a life of Miracles
      • If God could conceive a child of the Holy Spirit, then there is nothing He can not conceive with us. Whatever His plans for us may be, He is able to start it and He is able to Birth it.
      • The Conception and birth of the Savior shows us that we can live a life of power.
    • Because of Jesus we know God is with us.
      • Jesus ascended but left a Comforter
      • Now because of our acceptance and faith in Christ, the Holy Spirit is with us and always present.
      • It does not matter where we are and how we are fairing, God is always with us.
    • Because of Jesus, the poor are made rich.
      • Jesus came to seek and save the lost.
      • Due to the efforts of our Savior, we now are made rich, even though we were once poor.
      • Jesus Christ has taken poor sinners and made them joint heirs with Him and given us a hope of eternity.
  • This Gift is by far greater than any Toy, Jersey or Game System
  • As much as I cherish the gifts from my family, my friends and my church, I am especially grateful to this priceless Gift because God Himself gave us Jesus. The gift of Jesus is so powerful it enables me to live a life of signs.

Count It All Joy

James 1:2-ff

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.

Our Church recently recieved news about one of our Church Kids, Ellen Miller, that has devastated us all. The devastation that her parents have felt is even worse than that of the church. This has caused me to do some soul searching.

Why would this happen? Where is God in this? How can we continue to trust through all of this?

I have heard it said that we should not ask these questions or we should not question God, but I differ in this opinion!!!

I did a simple search on how many times David said, “Why God?” In the NIV version of the Psalms it says 12 times “Why God” or there is a question of “what are you doing God?” I find no problem with asking God questions because I have discovered that when we ask, He answers!!!

* Why do we face trials and difficult times?

When man fell in Genesis 3, we are introduced to the curse of sin. The weeds we see, the deaths we experience, and the sickness we face are all a result of the sin. The effects of this sin comes to the good, the bad and the ugly.

David said in Psalms 51:5, “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.”

Troubles are going to come. Pain will be faced. Heartache will be experienced. This can be thanks to the curse of sin and the accuser of the brethren, Satan himself. Trials and difficult times can be blamed on the enemy, but they also show us the desperate need for a savior that promises us the ability to overcome this sin.

* This is Good but it still Hurts

I have told myself these things. I have thought that Cancer is no match for Jesus, and I have said this is a result of the curse. I have made up my mind that my belief are not dictated by my circumstances but by the word of God. However, when the circumstances are this close I find myself acting like David and saying, “Why God?”

What are we to do when we know why things happen but when they do happen…..We are so devastated and hurt that we inevitably question everything we know to be true.

The only thing this pastor knows to do is to look up and Cry to a Savior.

* Look up and Cry Out

“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.” Psalms 121

I look up when I don’t understand because I know He understands.

I look up when I don’t have strength because His strength is perfect.

I look up when I don’t know what is going to happen because He knows my plans.

I choose to look up to the Lord Jesus Christ when life is bringing me lower than ever expected. I look up to Jesus Christ because He is my Author, He is my Finisher, and He is my Savior.

* “But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.” Matthew‬ ‭14:30‬

I cry out cause He hears his children’s cry.

I cry out cause He hears above the storms of life.

I cry out cause He wants me to cry to Him.

I understand I am to consider it joy when I enter into trials and tribulations. However, when my trials and tribulations bring such heartbreak and hurt and it is hard to consider them joy all this preacher knows to do is to Look up and Cry Out.

This pastor will Look Up (trust in God) and Cry Out (Talk Honestly with God).

One Thing I am convinced of through all the storms of life is this:

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Psalms‬ ‭46:1‬ ‭

So when I am in trouble, I will look up, and I will cry out.

Followers – A Discipleship Journey Session 4

Who is Jesus to You ? Jesus Is The Son of God


Over the Last three sessions we have discussed the subject, who is jesus to you? This last session is looking at the truth of Jesus being the Son of God.

Over the last three sessions, we have discussed the subject, who is Jesus to you? This last session is looking at the truth of Jesus being the Son of God.

I have three children, and out of my children, I only have one son. There is a special bond between a father and a son. There is no way I could ever understand the sacrifice that God the Father made in allowing Christ to go to the cross. The truth that Jesus is the son of God is found in these verses:

* John 1:1-5 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”

* Matthew 3:16-17 “As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”

* John 3:16-17 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”

We believe in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. This is a foundational belief of our walk with the Lord. God is one God but appears in 3 different persons. We call this the Godhead. Just as water can appear as ice, steam and liquid we glean from scripture that God appears in the Father, The Son and The Spirit.

We look at this today because it gives us the final lesson of who Jesus is. By Jesus identifying as the Son of God shows us His love, His identity, and His importance.

1. Because Jesus is the Son of God, His love is displayed.

* John 3:16 shows the love of God and the love of Jesus Christ.

* Christ was willing to give up all of heaven to be the sacrifice. Revelations 13:8 says that Christ was the lamb that was slain from the foundation of the world.

* Jesus loves you and man kind so much, and it is displayed in the fact that He is the Son of God, yet He chose to die for you. What Kind of Son would do this? Jesus did!

2. Because Jesus is the Son of God, his identity is now seen.

* The Son of God is now seen in these three titles:

* The Prophet – When Jesus came to earth, He was the Prophet sent by God.

* The Priest – The Son of God is now the High Priest of our faith according to Hebrews 7. He is our intercessor. He is our defense. He is our High Priest.

* The King – The Son of God is going to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He is waiting the command from the Father to come and reign and rule. The King will not be just some person, but it will be the Son of God……Jesus Christ!!!

3. Because Jesus is the Son of God, His importance is displayed.

* The Son of God is the only way to God.

* In John 14 Jesus says that He will bring the disciples to the place he has prepared. Thomas being curious says, “how will we know the way.” Jesus answers by saying, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” Only the Son of God can give access to God and that shows the importance of our wonderful Savior.

* Jesus is the Son of God. He is not a common person. He is not an angel. He is not a little god.

* Jesus is the Son of the living God that loved us enough to die for us, who is sufficient for us in every role He fills and grants us access to the Father in the only way possible.

* I declare today……Jesus is the Son of God!!

‭‭

Followers – A Discipleship Journey Session 3

Who is Jesus to You ? Jesus Is Our Hope

Colossians 1:20 “Christ in You the Hope of Glory”

What is hope? A desire for something to happen is what Webster says. When you look into the scripture, Paul defines hope as something we are anticipating…….

“For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes forwhat they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.” Romans 8:24-25 NIV

This week we look at the thought that Christ is our hope. Christ is not our hope because of anything that we receive here on earth and in this present life. Christ is our hope because of the promised victory that we have in Him. I believe that our hope is described the best in Romans 8:37-39….

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:37-39 NIV

Through the cross, the burial, and the resurrection, Jesus provides for us a hope that no experience on this earth can take from us.

1. Hope of Salvation

1. All people are in need of Saving when it comes to sin.

2. The work of the cross and the resurrection provides all humanity with a hope of salvation.

3. Through this work of Christ, this hope is that all our sins can be forgiven, and we can be in proper standing with God.

2. Hope of Glory

1. Eternal Dwelling

1. The old song says ….”This World is not my home, I’m only passing through.”

2. Through Christ, we now have a hope that we will not dwell here forever, and when we are buried, we will not remain in the ground forever.

3. The scripture declares…..”To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.”

4. Jesus says in John 14 that if we believe in Him, we will have a place where we will dwell with him forever.

2. Eternal Healing

1. Everyone deals with sickness, troubles, and trials.

2. Jesus gives us hope that this light affliction will be nothing compared to the future that we have in Him

“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 NIV

3. We believe that Christ is a healer, and that healings are still being performed today. However, if you do not experience a healing here, that does not diminish your hope of an eternal healing.

4. This hope is summed up in 1 Corinthians 15:53, “For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.”

5. We shall be Changed …..Jesus is our Hope of Eternal Healing.

3. Eternal Relationship

1. Our Faith is one of walking without sight.

2. We trust in what we have not seen. Jesus told the disciples that Thomas believed because he had seen, but blessed was those that would believe and had not seen.

3. We have a relationship with our Savior that is based on what we have experienced spiritual, the transformation His Spirit has performed in us, and the indwelling of His Spirit that has overtaken us. However there is coming a day where we will have an eternal Relationship with our Savior.

4. 1 Thessalonians 4:17 ends with saying theses words….“we will ever be with the Lord”

5. When we transition from temporal to eternal, we will forever be with the Savior that granted us this great gift of Salvation.

6. We have been in relationship with many people, but when we enter into eternity we shall have an eternal relationship with Jesus.

3. Jesus Our Hope

* 1 John 3:2 “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears,we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.”

* It is true that hope in Jesus will bring us eternal dwelling, eternal healing and eternal relationship, but our hope is essentially summed up in one word and that is Jesus.

* In Him we have a hope that can not be wrestled away, but anything Satan can throw our way

* The words of that old songs says…..”My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.”

* He is my hope…..when I see Him I shall receive everything I will ever need.

Who Is Jesus to You

Followers – A Discipleship Journey

Session 2

Jesus is Our Savior

John 3:16 “16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

What does it mean to be saved?

Webster says that it means to keep safe or to be rescued. When a drowning child is in the water, the lifeguard comes and rescues that child from the water and from the danger of drowning. This is what Jesus has done for mankind. The water represents sin. We were drowning in it, but Jesus is our lifeguard and has rescued us from that peril. This is what it means when we say Jesus is our Savior. He rescues us from the dangers of Sin and Brings us to safety. Jesus is our Savior…..

1. You Need Saving

* This has nothing to do with you and me being terrible people. * This has everything to do with us:

* Psalms 51:5 “Surely I was brought forth in iniquity; I was sinful when my mother conceived me.”

* This clarifies that each and everyone of us are born into sin.

* Everyone is involved here…..The Girl, The Boy, The Man and the Woman

* It does not matter where you come from and where you have been. Before Jesus Christ, everyone is in danger of drowning in this water called Sin.

2. Jesus Came to Rescue

Hebrews 9:22 says that without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness.

* The only remedy for the sin that marred humanity was the shedding of blood from a perfect sacrifice. That perfect sacrifice was Jesus Christ. He came and lived a perfect life (2 Corinthians 5:21), died on the cross as the perfect Sacrifice (Hebrews 10:10-18), and rose from the dead as a Victorious Savior (1 Corinthians 15:20). Jesus and His mission to earth was about Him Rescuing mankind from Sin and giving us hope for an eternal future.

* Today you can be Saved from Sin because of your belief in Jesus. Your works, Your talents or Your Church Attendance does not save you. Belief in Jesus and Trusting Him with your life is how you can be saved.

* Jesus Came to Rescue Us from Sin. He is our Savior because He has saved us from an eternity of separation from God. Sin can not dwell with God and this is why we need Jesus. Jesus has allowed us to be in an eternal relationship with God because His sacrifice has conquered Sin for those that believe and trust in Him.

3. Let Him Save you and Rejoice in His Saving

* If you are reading this and you have not accepted Jesus as your Savior and you haven’t received forgiveness for your sins….Today can be your day!

* The only thing you must do is …….Romans 10:9 “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

* When Salvation comes you are forgiven, you are new, and you are filled with Hope.

* Stop drowning in the water of Sin and let Jesus come and Rescue you.

* If we have been Saved by Jesus, then we must Rejoice in the fact that we have been saved

* We have been saved from an eternity of separation from God (Hell)

* We have been saved from the punishment of our sins

* We have been bought with the price of Jesus’ life, and we have been granted an invaluable gift in the Salvation of our Soul.

* Jesus is a Savior, and He wants to be known as the Rescuer of all Humanity.

* 1 John 4:14 “We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the World”

Who is Jesus to You?

Followers – A Discipleship Journey

Session 1

Who is Jesus to You ?

When Jesus was alone with His disciples in Matthew chapter sixteen, He asked the Question, “Who do men say that I am?” Can you imagine all the talk about Jesus? Just look at the conversation about our president right now. Regardless if you are a supporter or not, you can agree there are many different opinions about Donald Trump. If there are that many different opinions about President Trump, imagine how many opinions there were about Jesus Christ. Jesus in his day was healing sicknesses, raising the dead, preaching life changing sermons, and going against all cultural norms. The talk of the day was all over the place. We find in scripture one example in that the religious sect were saying that Jesus was of the devil. In this intimate moment with His disciples, He wanted to know who He was to them. As they began answering, they tell Jesus everything that people are saying. They tell Him people are saying you are Elijah, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets. What they fail to realize is that Jesus was not interested with what others were saying. Jesus wanted to know what they personally thought about Him. How true that is with us today. There are so many thoughts and views many views about who Jesus is, but each one of us must come to grips with who He is to us. In the first week of Followers, I want you to examine who is Jesus to you.

* The Scripture tells us Who Jesus is (3 Things we will list)

* The Son of God – Luke 1:32 “He shall be called the Son of the Highest”

* The Savior – Romans 10:9-10 “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”

* The Hope of the World – Colossians 1:27 “Christ in you is the hope of glory”

* Jesus is shown as so many things in the scriptures and these are just three things that I have listed. Scripture is clear. Jesus is not just a man, a martyr or a teacher, but He is the Son of God that came to save the world and give mankind Eternal Hope.

* Who is He to You?

* You have to decide

* Not the Culture

* Not your Parents

* You must follow Philippians 2:12 “work out your own salvation” – you must decide who Jesus is to You

* Discover Today

* Jesus is more than a story and more than a ticket to heaven.

* Jesus is the Son of God

* There is no other who has this title. In Being the Son of God it shows the supreme love the Father has for mankind. John 3:16 says that God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son. Because Jesus is the Son of God He has a place with God that none other can claim. Our Lord brings us into a Divine Relationship with God that nothing or no one else can. Because of the Son of God, we are now Children of God.

* Jesus is a Savior.

* In Accepting Jesus Christ, we find a peace that we never experienced before.

* A person trapped in a fire needs saving from a fire. A person drowning needs saving from the water. Every person born is in need of being saved from Sin. Sin is separation from God. The sacrifice and resurrection of Jesus saves us from sin. Jesus is a wonderful Savior.

* In Accepting Jesus, we discover a hope that will lift us.

* Jesus lifts us up above all our trials and all our tribulations. The Hope of Jesus frees us from the worries of this world.

* Our sicknesses, Our troubles, and even death can not steal the Hope Jesus brings.

* Philippians 4:8 describes this peace as a peace that passes all understanding. The peace that Jesus brings is something hard to understand; it is something you will experience. My hope is Jesus.

* I challenge you today to discover who Jesus is.

* Do not rely on what someone is saying, but rely on what Christ offers.

* Ways to discover

* The Word – Spend time reading your Bible and discover Jesus.

* Prayer – Spend time in prayer and discover Jesus.

* The Body of Christ – Spend time with your Church Family and experience Jesus.

I Want God’s Presence

Jonah 1:1-3

“Now the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.”

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Sunday we looked at the story of Jonah. I noticed something new as I studied the narrative of the prophet. When Jonah decided to reject Nineveh, He went against God but He also decided to go away from the presence of God.

I am amazed by the people of God who feel as their life can be completely opposite to the will of God and still retain His favor and presence. The scripture declares that God approves of Obedience over our Sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:22). Our obedience to the will of God is what brings His presence into our life.

So we ask ourselves this question……..

What is the presence of God? Is it His ability to be all places at all times or is it His intimate relationship with His children? When I look at the word used in Jonah, I am convinced that this refers to the intimate face to face relationship God has with His children.

First of All…….

1. God is Everywhere/His presence is the Difference

– He is omnipresent. God is everywhere we go. He is in Heaven….He is in the earth…..He is everywhere!!!

– God’s omnipresence however, does not replace His presence/favor.

– God’s omnipresence was already on the backside of the desert, but He came to Moses with His PRESENCE ……when the bush burned but wasn’t consumed.

– God’s omnipresence was already in the Lion’s den, but when Daniel was thrown in because of His obedience, God’s PRESENCE appeared and prevented the lions from eating Daniel.

– There is a difference between God just being everywhere and His presence being in our lives…….which one do you want?

I know where I stand…….

2. I want to Know Him

– The word used in Jonah for the presence of God is seen in describing Moses and God’s interactions of Face to Face relationship.

– This is the relationship I long for with God.

– I want us to hunger for a relationship with God that is intimate and personal.

– A Relationship that is not satisfied with knowing God is everywhere but one that wants His favor to rest on us wherever we go.

– The way to this relationship is through obedience to His word and His will………

– So unlike Jonah, Let’s commit to go to Nineveh, Tarshish or anywhere God sends us!!!