Thursday, December 3, 2009

You are righteous and nothing is impossible for you

A dear friend of mine wrote this note. I was so blessed by it that i couldnt possibly NOT put it online:

"As truly born again Christians we posses a new nature inside of us. This nature is at the very core of who we are and already predestines us to absolute greatness in God.

Many underestimate all that happened at the point of salvation but here are some key things that happened to you when you were born again:
- At salvation our Spirit is made alive unto God.
- At salvation we are co-buried with Christ and our sinful nature is circumcised from us.
- At salvation we are made alive with Christ and given a totally new nature and a heart of flesh instead of a heart of stone.
- At salvation we are given identity and purpose.
Now, that’s not all that happens at salvation but for what I want to speak about it’ll do.

Full freedom, deliverance, prosperity, health and every manifestation of heaven exists in your spirit. You have been given fullness in Christ, WITHOUT MEASURE. Your spirit manifests PERFECT righteousness and PERFECT obedience. Don’t get me wrong though, our bodies and minds are wonderful creations made and loved by God himself and God totally relates to our ENTIRE being through the gift of righteousness. When God looks at you he sees you through Jesus and In the Holy Spirit.

Now, I’m sure there are things in your life that may be holding you down or bondages that you really want to be free of but you just seem to fall into the same trap, over and over. I’ve been there and in some areas I am there but I’ve heard God’s voice about this and I’d love to share.

The only thing in this entire universe that’ll cause you to conquer sin is the Grace of God. What I mean by that is this: Knowing that God is not holding sins against you and knowing that even your worst mistake won’t separate you from God is the very thing that will cause you to conquer those things!

I want to say this with love, but also with authority: discipline, obedience and even Repentance won’t bring holiness, ONLY Grace, unadulterated Grace will. When I say holiness I mean so much more than just not sinning! Touching Grace is touching Jesus and is touching Jesus is touching Holiness. Friendship with God is HOLINESS.

Let me give you an example from my own life, a testimony… I’ve battled with things in my life and when I mess up I often think something along the lines of, “I hope that by the end of these holidays or this month I’ll conquer this thing.. and I’ll be soooo disappointed with myself if I don’t!” This happened to me and in that state of severe condemnation I decided to run straight into His presence, because I KNEW that the manifestation of Grace will be what brings me out of that place.

As I was standing there, soaking and enjoying myself I heard His voice so clearly inside of me saying, “Son, even if you don’t conquer this thing by the end of these holidays, I WILL NOT be disappointed by you at all.” From that very moment I have felt a ridiculous strength in the face of temptation and new freedom. Not only that but more importantly I’ve been so much more able to laugh in the face of the enemy when he tries to bring condemnation on me.

Here are two scriptures that back up all that I have been saying, because its good to be biblical :-)
1 Corinthians 15:56 : “The sting of sin is death, but the power of sin is the law”
Romans 6:14 : “For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.”

You may be wondering, “this is good stuff, but what does it look like? How do I do it?” Let’s get practical then. The most valuable thing you can do when you feel the worst about yourself is to run into His presence. Sometimes it feels impossible but that is when it is vitally important to remember the words he has said to you and the AMAZING truths in the word that tell you God is NOT holding your sins against you and that you are THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD in Christ.

Don’t seek to get right with God. Seek to understand that you ARE RIGHT WITH GOD!! Don’t get into that endless attitude of sorrowful repentance of sin (which isn’t biblically accurate anyways) but instead get into His presence and find THE FULLNESS OF JOY! Don’t accept those lies of the enemy telling you you’re dirty! NO! You are clean!! Because HE made you clean. He made you GOOD ENOUGH. He made you able. You can soar on wings like eagles!!

You know what the most beautiful thing of approaching God boldly in this manner and under NO circumstance considering yourself a sinner, never accepting condemnation is? It is the GREATEST faith you can have. IT PLEASES GOD DEEPLY.

I honestly, from deep within my being, can feel God smiling at us when we don’t make a big issue of sin and when we agree with the simplicity of the gospel: He became your sin so that you may become His righteousness. SIMPLE! Don’t get confused about faith – it’s not a mystery as the word says that the mystery of Christ is revealed to us. And that is exactly where our faith is.

What God spoke to me about faith is simply agreeing with Him about Himself, about Yourself and about your world. Faith is not irrational or difficult. It is extremely easy with the right teaching, so soak yourself in Grace teaching :-) and so encounter His transforming presence.

What I’m truly trying to get at here (and I hope the point has now been overly labored and been soaked into you, lol) is that it is the GOSPEL that is the power of salvation (which is also the word for deliverance!) and in that gospel a Righteousness FROM GOD is revealed that is by FAITH from first to last. (Romans 1:16-17).

NO born again Christian wants to stay sinning, they have a new heart and over time that’ll manifest. Don’t go beat yourself up now because your life isn’t manifesting holiness, obedience and discipline yet. (Look at Abraham, he believed God and it was accredited to him as righteousness but soon after that He lied to a king, telling him his wife was his sister! If he were to have gone under the law and striving at that stage he would NEVER have manifested those good things).

Instead, STAY in FAITH and FAR away from works. Don’t force obedience onto yourself. Hebrews 11:6 says it is impossible to please God apart from faith. So if you don’t have the faith to be obedient or even to stop a bad habit in your life but you try in your own strength and flesh anyways, you’re sinning in doing that!! You’re in UNBELIEF. That’s radical I know but what I’m trying to say here is that your victory won’t be found in striving, but in rest.

The Kingdom isn’t a matter of food or drink but of RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE AND JOY in the HOLY SPIRIT. I much prefer having rest in the spirit and laughing my way into utter, irreversible victory than worrying and striving in my fleshy works, only ending in disappointment and often a greater depth of sin.

Your victory is in the Holy Spirit, not in your obedience, sacrifice, repentance or anything in or of yourself. Begin to learn how to rest; begin to enjoy God and take pleasure in Him based on His goodness and just as Sarah (who was barren) was able to conceive, you will also begin to bear good fruit unto God.

This is good news, I hope you enjoyed it..

Grace and Peace,


I pray that it blessed you as much as it did me

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Are we under the law of Moses Today?

Many people turn to the Old Testament for their authority for modern religious practices. The practices that are most commonly defended from the Old Testament are tithing, Sabbath observance, burning of incense in worship, instrumental music in worship, infant church membership and a separate priesthood. People turn to the Old Testament to justify such practices because no authority can be found for them in the New Testament. But, are we under either the Patriarchal or Mosaic Law today? Should we seek to justify today's religious practices by appealing to the Law of Moses? This study shall cite several obvious reasons why we should not turn to the Old Testament for modern religious authority. However, before discussing these reasons I wish to address a common misconception about "inspiration" and "authority."

The Difference Between Bible Inspiration and Bible Authority
One is often accused of "not believing in the Old Testament" when he teaches that the Old Testament is not our standard of authority today. However, there is a difference between inspiration and authority. The apostle Paul wrote, "All Scripture is inspired of God..." (2 Timothy 3:16), and he made it clear that this includes both Old and New Testament "Scriptures." He had written in the first letter, "For the Scripture says, ‘You shall not muzzle the ox when he treads out the grain,' and, ‘The laborer is worthy of his wages'" (1 Timothy 5:18). The first quote is from Moses (Deut. 25:4), and is a part of the Old Testament. The second quote is from Jesus (Luke 10:7), and is a part of the New Testament. Paul classified both sayings as "Scripture." This means that the Old and New Testament Scriptures are equally inspired. No true Bible believer can deny the inspiration of the Old Testament. All "Scripture" must be believed, accepted, and considered as "profitable for salvation" (2 Tim. 3:16, 17). The question is not whether or not one should "believe in" the Old Testament, for he must! The question of our title concerns the present purpose and application of those Scriptures. Does the fact that the Old Testament is inspired necessarily mean that it constitutes our moral, spiritual and religious standard? Does the Old Testament constitute an authoritative religious guide for people today?

1. The Law of Moses was given to the Jewish people. Old Covenant Jews were under a theocratic form of government. Their spiritual law was also their civil law. This is often overlooked by religious people of today. They fail to consider that many of the Mosaic laws had to do with maintaining the purity of the Abrahamic lineage. The Old Testament contains special instructions prohibiting the Jewish people from marrying outside of their race (Deuteronomy 7:3). Certain food restrictions and cleanliness laws maintained the peculiarity and holiness of the Jewish people (see Leviticus 11).

After summoning "all Israel," Moses said to them, "The Lord our God made a covenant with us in Horeb. Not with our fathers did the Lord make this covenant, but with us, who are all of us alive here today" (Deuteronomy 5:2, 3). In case there was any question about which people were under consideration, Moses said it was the nation that God had earlier delivered from Egyptian slavery (Deut. 5:6). The Law of Moses was a Jewish law. It was given to Jews in order to regulate their social and spiritual conduct. As we shall see later, this law had a certain life expectancy.

Non-Jews (Gentiles) before the cross were "alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenant of promise, having no hope and without God in the world" (Eph. 2:12). Because of its peculiar relationship to the Jewish people, the Law of Moses was "a dividing wall of hostility" that separated Jews from Gentiles. According to the apostle Paul, in order for peace to be achieved the Law of Moses had to be "abolished," and this was accomplished upon the death of Christ (Ephesians 2:14, 15; Colossians 2:14). Since God cannot be blamed for this "hostility" between Jews and Gentiles, we must conclude that God never intended for the Gentiles to be governed by the Law of Moses! The abolition of the old covenant paved the way for the ratification and inauguration of the New Covenant: "He abolished the first in order to establish the second" (Hebrews 10:9). This was "the new and living way," which allowed both Jews and Gentiles access to forgiveness of sins and fellowship with God (Ephesians 2:16-18)

2. The Law of Moses was temporary. It served God's intended purpose and it was taken out of the way. In explaining the relationship between the Law of Moses and the promise to Abraham, Paul pointed out that the Law was given 430 years after God had given the "seed" promise to Abraham. He explained that the "seed" ["offspring"] to which God referred was Christ (Galatians 3:16). Paul told the Galatians, "Why then the law? It was added [to the law of Moses, th] because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary" (Gal. 3:19). The word "until" implies an end - a stopping point. Paul went on to explain that end: "Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under the guardian" (Galatians 3:23-25). The Law of Moses served as "a guardian," to be in effect "until" Christ came and inaugurated his system of justification by faith. The Law of Moses perfectly accomplished its mission and was removed. No human is "under" this guardian today. This passage actually sets up a dangerous scenario for those who contend that the Law of Moses remains: If the Law of Moses remains, then Christ has not come. And if Christ has not come, then we have no hope of salvation!

3. The Law of Moses was fulfilled by Jesus. As noted, the Law of Moses had a certain life expectancy. Paul explained that the Law reigned "until Christ came," but he did not explain how the coming of Christ affected the Law. We leave this explanation to Jesus: "Think not that I have come to destroy the law or the prophets: I came not to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass away, till all things be accomplished" (Matthew 5:17, 18). The "jot" was the smallest letter of the Hebrew alphabet. The "tittle" was a small accent mark that distinguished some Hebrew letters from others. Jesus' point was that he completely accomplished the Law. The sinless and perfect life of the savior "fulfilled" the law. Before Jesus, no human had ever lived a sinless life (Gal. 3:22; Rom. 3:23). By his perfect life and obedience, Jesus satisfied the legal requirements of the Law. We should remember that while on the cross, Jesus uttered the words "it is finished" (John 19:30). This was a highly significant statement. The death of Jesus marked the end of the Old Testament era and the inauguration of the New Testament (see Hebrews 9:15-17).

4. It constitutes spiritual adultery for one to be under the Old Testament and the New Testament at the same time (Romans 7:1-4). This is what Paul told the Jewish Christians at Rome, and the same consequence would apply to us today. Paul here cites the physical marriage relationship to illustrate the nature of the relationship between Christians and the Law. The woman, who marries another man while her husband yet lives, is "an adulteress." Similarly, people commit spiritual adultery when they simultaneously join themselves to both the Law of Moses and the Law of Christ. "Through the body of Christ" [his death] people "died to the law" [of Moses.] The death of Christ released the Jews from the Law of Moses (Romans 7:6), thus freeing them to be bound to Christ. Interestingly, no one living today has ever been under the Law of Moses! Paul, writing in the first century AD, wrote to Jews who were actually once amenable to that Law (see point #1, above).

5. One cannot be saved by Christ while seeking justification by the Law of Moses. Paul told the saints of Galatia, "You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace" (Galatians 5:4). This verse alone should be enough to convince people that no one us under the Law of Moses today. Due to the nature of the two laws, one simply cannot fulfill the requirements of the Law of Moses and the Law of Christ at the same time. As explained before, Jesus fulfilled the teaching of "the Law and the prophets" (Matt. 5:18). Paul later told these Galatians to "fulfill the law of Christ" (Gal. 6:2). All today are "under the law to Christ" (1 Corinthians 9:21).

It should be noted that Galatians 5:4 states that one "falls from grace" if he seeks justification by the Law of Moses. Along with teaching that no human today is accountable to God through the Law of Moses, this verse also teaches that it is possible for a person to "fall from grace!" In one fell swoop, Galatians 5:4 decimates both of these human errors.

6. Those who seek justification by the Law of Moses are obligated to "keep the whole law." Paul said, "I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law" (Galatians 5:3). And, "For all who rely on works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written, ‘Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them'" (Galatians 3:10). These passages plainly teach that the Law of Moses must be followed wholly if it is to be followed at all! First century deceivers tried to convince people that they had to "be circumcised" in order to be Christians. Paul made it clear that if one goes to the Old Testament for his authority for circumcision, then he is bound to keep the rest of that law. There is no "picking-and-choosing" when it comes to obedience to God.

In our day, we don't see many people turning to the Old Law to justify or bind circumcision as a religious rite or requirement. However, we do see many people turn to the Old Testament in order to justify Sabbath keeping, tithing and the use of instrumental music in worship to God. But have such people considered the consequences of their actions? According to Paul's argument, these same people must observe every other requirement of the Old Law. This would include not only circumcision, but also the burning of animal sacrifices, the observance of Mosaic civil laws, including death penalty laws for a number of sins, cleanliness laws, food restrictions and a host of other rules, regulations and restrictions. Why don't those who use the Old Testament for their authority for the type of music that they want in worship (mechanical), also use the Old Testament for their authority for the type of "sacrifices" that they offer in worship? Why don't we see people running to the Old Testament for their instructions about sacrifice? It appears that folks want to be able to appeal to the Law of Moses to justify their favorite and preferred practices, but they don't want to be stuck with having to accept the others. According to the apostle Paul, in Galatians 3:10, they don't have this choice. Consistency demands that if they go to the Old Testament to justify one religious act, they are obligated to go their for justification of all other religious acts.

7. The Hebrew writer said, "For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins" (Hebrews 10:4). However, this is precisely the type of sacrifice that was offered under the Law of Moses (Hebrews 9:13-22; 10:1-4). The conclusion: Salvation is not through the Old Covenant. Under the Law of Moses "remembrance was made of sin year after year." No actual forgiveness was accomplished. The sacrifices under the Law were types and shadows. They taught people to look forward to the coming of the Messiah and to the perfect sacrifice that was to come - the antitype, "the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world" - Jesus Christ (Jn. 1:29). Jesus instituted his own covenant, which he ratified by his own blood (Hebrews 8:9-13; 9:14-28). The lesson from Hebrews 8-10 is clear: The saving blood is the blood of the New Covenant, not of the Old! One cannot be saved by the Law of Moses. This wasn't even its purpose, which leads us to our next point:

8. The Law of Moses Was Given To Define and to Prevent Sin. Let us revisit Paul's words in Galatians 3:19: "Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary." Note that the Law was added (to the promise) "because of transgressions." Old Testament history reveals that prior to the giving of the Law at Sinai, the Jewish people were adopting the abominable practices of the peoples around them. The Old Testament served to identify, codify and define sin. Paul said, "I had not known sin but by the law, for I had not known lust, except the law had said, ‘Thou shalt not covet'" (Romans 7:7). Paul here quotes one of the Ten Commandments in order to illustrate the purpose of the Old Testament. Had God not intervened, the Jewish people would have utterly lost their identity, having melded in thought and practice with the nations around them. We are again reminded of the fact that the Law of Moses was peculiarly Jewish in its purpose and design.

9. If the Law of Moses remains binding today, then Jesus does not qualify as our High Priest. This must be the most significant consequence of this error. Without Jesus as our High Priest we would have no one to "make propitiation for our sins" (Heb. 2:17). We would be unable to "draw near to the throne of grace, to receive mercy, and find grace to help in time of need" (Heb. 4:16). We would have no priest that identified with both God and man. We would have no priest "after the order of Melchizedek." There would be no eternal and infallible priesthood (Heb. 7:3, 23, 24). Old Testament priests had to offer sacrifices for their own sins, as well as for the people (Heb. 9:7), and death prevented them from continuing in office (Heb. 7:23). And, as touched upon earlier, there was a problem with their sacrifices. These priests offered animal sacrifices, which were never intended to atone for sin. These sacrifices "could not perfect the consciences of the worshippers" (Hebrews 9:9). Herein lies the real significance of the sacrifice of Christ (Heb. 9:11-28). Jesus executed his priestly duties in heaven itself, in the immediate presence of God! Without Jesus as our High Priest we would be doomed. Let us now consider what the Hebrew writer said about Jesus' priesthood and the Old Law.

The Hebrew writer observed that had perfection been attainable through the Levitical priesthood and the order of Aaron, there would have been no need for a priest to arise "after the order of Melchizedek." The inspired writer then said:

"For when there is a change in the priesthood, there is necessarily a change in the law as well. For the one of whom these things are spoken belonged to another tribe, from which no one has ever served at the altar. For it is evident that our Lord was descended from Judah, and in connection with that tribe Moses said nothing about priests" (Hebrews 7:12-14).

The argument is simple: If the Law of Moses remains binding upon men today, then Jesus does not qualify to serve as our High Priest! As stated, Jesus was not from the tribe of Levi. He was of the tribe of Judah, and Moses never authorized priests from the tribe of Judah. This meant that Jesus could not serve as High Priest while the Law of Moses "yet stood." This condition required "a change in the law." As we observed in previous points, upon Christ's death upon the cross, the Old Covenant was replaced with the New Covenant or New Testament - the last will and testament of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 9:15). Unlike the Law of Moses, the Law of Christ DOES authorize Jesus to serve as High Priest, and he presently functions in that capacity (Hebrews 4:14-16; 7:22-28).

There is another important lesson to learn from Hebrews 7:11-14. Non-Levites were not refused admittance into the priesthood upon the basis that "God told them not to," for God didn't tell them "not to." Rather, non-Levites were forbidden to serve as priests upon the very basis that God specified "Levi" as the priestly tribe, and he "said nothing about priests" from Judah or any other tribe of Israel! God's silence is prohibitive in every instance where God specifies something within a particular class of activity.

10. The Law of Moses was "abolished." The gospel of Christ plainly affirms that the old law has been abrogated. In his death on the cross, Jesus "abolished in his flesh the Law of commandments contained in ordinances" (Ephesians 2:14, 15). Notice also Colossians 2:14, where Paul said, "Having cancelled the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us and which was hostile to us; and he has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross." 2 Corinthians 3:13-16 likens modern adherence to the Law of Moses to the wearing of a veil. When one turns to Christ that "veil" is "taken away." Some people want to believe that these passages are addressing only "the ceremonial aspect of the Law." This simply is not true, for 2 Corinthians 3:7 speaks of what was "carved in stone," clearly referring to the Ten Commandments.

After quoting Jeremiah's prophecy of the New Covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34), the Hebrew writer cited its fulfillment in the ratification of the New Testament (Heb. 8:7-13). "In speaking of the new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away" (Heb. 8:13). The writer infers from the use of the word "new" that "the first" covenant is old, obsolete and vanishing away. And in chapter 10, after quoting part of the prophecy again, the writer concludes, "Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin" (Heb. 10:18). The next verse says, "Therefore brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus." There can be no doubt that Jeremiah's prophecy was fulfilled - the Old Covenant gave way to the New Covenant.

Though the Law of Moses provides us with a valuable treasure of history, examples and insights into the nature of God (Romans 15:4; 1 Corinthians 10:6, 11), it is not our religious standard today. We are amenable to God by means of the law of Christ. It is the law that we are to fulfill (Galatians 6:2). It is the "law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus" (Romans 8:2). Jesus is the author of eternal salvation to those who meet the conditions and keep the provisions of his law - the law of the gospel.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

It doesn't matter which translation you use-it remains true

Some People say that Grace Teachers have misinterpreted the Bible because we are using a faulty translation. However, as you will soon see, it really does not mater which Biblical Translation you use-it remains the same. It remains true. Trying to obey laws in order to gain justification (acceptance, forgiveness, blessings, right standing) in God is not of faith and not by GRACE , but is of law, which is not based on faith, but fear...


NAS© : You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.

ISV©: Those of you who are trying to be justified by the law have been cut off from the Messiah. You have fallen away from grace.

GWT©: Those of you who try to earn God's approval by obeying his laws have been cut off from Christ. You have fallen out of God's favor.

KJV: Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

AKJ: Christ is become of no effect to you, whoever of you are justified by the law; you are fallen from grace.

ASV: Ye are severed from Christ, ye would be justified by the law; ye are fallen away from grace.

BBE: You are cut off from Christ, you who would have righteousness by the law; you are turned away from grace.

DRB: You are made void of Christ, you who are justified in the law: you are fallen from grace.

DBY: Ye are deprived of all profit from the Christ as separated from him, as many as are justified by law; ye have fallen from grace.

ERV: Ye are severed from Christ, ye who would be justified by the law; ye are fallen away from grace.

WBS: Christ is become of no effect to you, whoever of you are justified by the law; ye have fallen from grace.

WEY: Christ has become nothing to any of you who are seeking acceptance with God through the Law: you have fallen away from grace.

WEB: You are alienated from Christ, you who desire to be justified by the law. You have fallen away from grace.

YLT: ye were freed from the Christ, ye who in law are declared righteous; from the grace ye fell away;

THE NEXT argument was that we had misread the commentaries refering to such scripture, so here are a few commentaries:

Geneva Study Bible
Christ is {b} become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are {c} justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

(b) That is, as he himself expounds it afterward, ye are fallen from grace.

(c) That is, seek to be justified by the Law, for indeed no man is justified by the Law.

People's New Testament

5:4 Christ is become of no effect unto you. If you be circumcised in order to keep the Mosaic law. See PNT Ga 5:2.

Ye have fallen from grace. By resorting to the law for salvation.

Wesley's Notes

5:4 Therefore Christ is become of no effect to you - Who seek to be justified by the law. Ye are fallen from grace - Ye renounce the new covenant. Ye disclaim the benefit of this gracious dispensation.

Scofield Reference Notes

Margin no effect

i.e. of no experimental effect: the sense of liberty is lost. Gal 2:21 Col 1:23.

Margin grace

Grace (in salvation). Eph 1:6,7 Rom 3:24. See Scofield Note: "Gal 1:6", See Scofield Note: "Jn 1:17".

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

4. Literally, "Ye have become void from Christ," that is, your connection with Christ has become void (Ga 5:2). Ro 7:2, "Loosed from the law," where the same Greek occurs as here.

whosoever of you are justified-"are being justified," that is, are endeavoring to be justified.

by the law-Greek, "IN the law," as the element in which justification is to take place.

fallen from grace-Ye no longer "stand" in grace (Ro 5:2). Grace and legal righteousness cannot co-exist (Ro 4:4, 5; 11:6). Christ, by circumcision (Lu 2:21), undertook to obey all the law, and fulfil all righteousness for us: any, therefore, that now seeks to fulfil the law for himself in any degree for justifying righteousness, severs himself from the grace which flows from Christ's fulfilment of it, and becomes "a debtor to do the whole law" (Ga 5:3). The decree of the Jerusalem council had said nothing so strong as this; it had merely decided that Gentile Christians were not bound to legal observances. But the Galatians, while not pretending to be so bound, imagined there was an efficacy in them to merit a higher degree of perfection (Ga 3:3). This accounts for Paul not referring to the decree at all. He took much higher ground. See Paley's Horæ Paulinæ. The natural mind loves outward fetters, and is apt to forge them for itself, to stand in lieu of holiness of heart.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

5:1-6 Christ will not be the Saviour of any who will not own and rely upon him as their only Saviour. Let us take heed to the warnings and persuasions of the apostle to stedfastness in the doctrine and liberty of the gospel. All true Christians, being taught by the Holy Spirit, wait for eternal life, the reward of righteousness, and the object of their hope, as the gift of God by faith in Christ; and not for the sake of their own works. The Jewish convert might observe the ceremonies or assert his liberty, the Gentile might disregard them or might attend to them, provided he did not depend upon them. No outward privileges or profession will avail to acceptance with God, without sincere faith in our Lord Jesus. True faith is a working grace; it works by love to God, and to our brethren. May we be of the number of those who, through the Spirit, wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. The danger of old was not in things of no consequence in themselves, as many forms and observances now are. But without faith working by love, all else is worthless, and compared with it other things are of small value.


Grace (Sola Fida, Sola Gracia) is true. Do not add or subtract from the message of Christ, for then we make HIS GOSPEL of no effect. For if we could have been justified by laws (any law, be it Catholic, Protestant, Mosaic or other) then Christ Died in Vain. We could have done it without Him, in our own power.

Love ya'll


"But by faith we eagerly await through the Spirit the righteousness for which we hope."
Galatians 5:5

Saturday, August 29, 2009

A wonderful Post by a brother in Christ

"Religion, I believe, is the greatest disappointment of our time.
Today’s brand of Christianity is the chief culprit.
People are given laws, rules and regulations which instead of helping them seems to plunge them deeper into sin and fear of death.
The more we know, the more we find out that we are not good enough. The more rules and regulations we have, the more we see that have fallen short of the ideal.
This kind of Christianity cannot be the answer. Religion cannot be that which we are looking for.
The sincere student of the life of Jesus cannot help but notice the paradox of today’s Christianity. The holiness that Jesus practiced did not intimidate the sinner, it attracted him. The average sinner flocked to Jesus. The holiness that Jesus preached attracted the sinner but repelled the religious. Isn’t it strange that today’s message attracts the religious but repels the sinner?
Religion meets the sinner and gives him guilt. Jesus met the sinner and gave him mercy.
Religion meets man and gives him laws. Jesus met man and gave him love.
Religion meets a man in trouble and explains to him that it’s the will of God, he deserves it. Jesus only solved problems.
Religion refuses to be touched by the stain of sinners. Jesus died a sinners death.
Christianity today is a system of self righteousness paying lip service to the finished work of Christ. Please take away the religion, give me Jesus. Him alone.
It’s a shame that we are sacrificing our lives to build walls, denominations, instead of building the body of Christ. Patenting His body. I'm not Roman Catholic [The church is made in heaven not in Rome], neither am I Anglican [The church is not made in England either], I’m not even Protestant [I wasn’t born in the 1500’s]. I'm not even Pentecostal [though I fellowship in a “Pentecostal Organization”]. I don’t have a denominational label. My only identity is Christ. I am from the beginning to the end a believer in Jesus. That alone.
Jesus never started any religion, we did.
Jesus was not denominational conscious, we are.
Jesus never emphasized dress codes, we do.
Jesus was not title conscious, we are.
Jesus never emphasized places. We do.
Jesus did not start the worship of altars, we did.
Religion has taken away my lord, we must find out where He is.
Don’t give me a candle, give me light.
Don’t give me a crucifix, set me free [it’s a shame that the only Jesus some will ever see is a naked man hanging on a cross, dead]. The cross is empty. The tomb too. He is alive and well!
I don’t want “Holy Water”, quench my thirst.
Remove the “pulpit’, give me His message.
Don’t load me with guilt, set my soul free.
Give me Jesus, Him alone."

written by Chinedu Chinweokwu

Friday, August 21, 2009

When "Jesus Loves You" is the last thing on your mind

In my previous blog I mentioned that JESUS LOVES US AS WE ARE. There is no need to feel “distant” from God or to fear His Wrath. Jesus has reconciled us to God and taken the wrath we so rightly deserved upon Himself.

Someone wrote back to me via email and said: “I am going through a hard time at present and want to know where I can find the spiritual power to overcome the obstacles I am facing”.

That may be a question you are asking to. Jesus loves us, SO WHAT? Does he see what I am going through? Does he see my pain? I do not need to hear about the LOVE of God. What I need is spiritual empowerment!


Jeremiah was a young man who loved the LORD. But He was very sad when he wrote the book of Lamentations writing: “He shot his arrows deep within me. My own people laugh at me. All day long they sing their mocking songs” (Lam. 3:13-14)

“I am filled with bitterness. He has given me a cup of sorrow to drink. He has made me grind my teeth on gravel. He has rolled me in the dust. ALL OF MY PEACE IS LOST” (Lam. 3:15-17)

“The thought of my suffering and homelessness is beyond words. I will never forget this awful time as I grieve over my loss YET…” (Lam. 3:19-21)

Have you possibly lost your peace? Maybe things aren’t going well for you at this time. Jeremiah knew what it was like to go through the hardest of times…he speaks about his awful sorrow and his lack of peace but then he says “YET”. This is a word which means “even though”.

“The thought of my suffering and homelessness is beyond words. I will never forget this awful time as I grieve over my loss YET I STILL DARE TO HOPE…”

He is declaring that EVEN THOUGH everything is going wrong HE STILL DARES TO HOPE. I love that! He is DARING to hope. This is not some pretty little poofy hope. It took bravery for him to have hope in the midst of his trials. He decides to go against the messages the world was sending his way and DARE to hope.

Within my previous blog I mentioned that God loves us UNCONDITIONALLY. Which is: no strings attached FREE love. It does not matter what is happening in our lives-God is with us. He is still pleased with us. He sings over us. He dances over us. He smiles whenever He thinks of us. We are still His Joy.

The Joy of the LORD is our Strength and so when He is JOYFUL over us, we are empowered and strengthened in Him. This is because of Faith and not because of our obedience to certain rules and regulations. We have this privilege not because we are good- but because GOD IS GOOD.

Knowing how much He delights in us gives us supernatural strength to overcome even the toughest of trials.

“The thought of my suffering and homelessness is beyond words. I will never forget this awful time as I grieve over my loss YET I STILL DARE TO HOPE WHEN I THINK OF THIS: THE LOVE OF THE LORD WHICH NEVER FAILS ME WILL NEVER END!(Lam. 19-22)

Can you see this?

When we have a revelation of how much GOD LOVES US we will be supernaturally empowered in the midst of the most trying of times to be OVERCOMERS. The Root word for the word “GRACE” is “CHARIS”. It means the following:

“Unconditional love and acceptance that fills the heart with thankfulness and empowerment”

GRACE, Gods unconditional acceptance of us, is EMPOWERING!

This is why Paul says that GRACE is the POWER of the gospel (Rom. 1 16-17)

If you are going through a hard time, ask God for a revelation of HIS LOVE. His love is a Love that never fails. He will never leave us nor forsake us.

Jesus said, “Remember this, I will be with you ALWAYS even until the end of the age.” (Matt. 28:20)

He did NOT say, “I will be with you for the next ten minutes, but then I have to go somewhere.”

Neither did He say, “I will be with you UNTIL YOU SIN.”

NO way. He said I am with you ALWAYS!

When you fail-He is with you

When you sin-He is with you

When things are going badly-He is with you

When life doesn’t make sense-He is with you.



He is in you. How much closer could God be? He is not far, far away. HE IS IN YOU. He sees even the deepest pain deep down in your heart, because He is deep down in your heart. He is within you ready to empower you and lift you higher. He loved you so much that He gave His everything to reconcile you to himself.

Be deeply encouraged guys, even in the midst of the most troubling of times. GOD LOVES YOU AND IS WITH YOU



Thursday, August 20, 2009

Faith in Times of Affliction

Holding onto your faith can be a tremendous struggle at times. Sometimes it seems as though God has forgotten about you, your struggles or your pain.

I felt like this recently. I have struggled with something the Church views at utterly sinful for as long as I can remember. I have been ridiculed and insulted from pulpits. I have been misunderstood and hated by Christians. I have been thrown out of Church’s. I have been embarrassed at times to even be called a “Christian”.

The Church, that should be a place of love and tolerance, is sometimes, and more often than not, the breading ground for intolerance and hatred.

Sinners often leave the Church condemned rather than free, angered rather than at peace and burned-out rather than refreshed.

I have been angry with the Church, with God and with His Word. Having struggled with Same-sex attractions as a Bisexual male has not been easy in a culture that out-rightly and unapologetically, not to mention hypocritically, denies you the right to full membership and constantly misunderstands you.

But instead of getting upset, I smile. I am not ashamed to say that I am tempted in this way any longer because behind the social-masks and the proud displays of religion some Christians wear, I know that deep within us all is brokenness. We have all failed God. We have all failed each other. No one can say that he or she has acted perfectly at all times.

My sin may be different to yours, but sin is sin. As James puts it: “For whoever keeps the whole law, but stumbles on just one point, has broken the entire law” (Jas. 2: 10)

Maybe you are having sex prematurely, or maybe you are addicted to pornography. Perhaps you are angry with God or His Church. Some may be gluttons or smokers. There are many different sins and whether we like it or not, we have all committed a few in our lives. That’s Okay. It doesn’t shock God. He is the beginning and the end. He is all-knowing. He knows your end from your beginning. He knows what you did yesterday, but greater still; He knows what you will do tomorrow, or the next day or even in three years time. When you failed and sinned, He was not surprised. He knew it was coming. He was not disillusioned because He never had any illusions in the first place.

AND HERE IS A HUGE MYSTERY: Jesus died for ALL of your sins before you were even born. Imagine that! Our God must know every sin we will ever commit because HE DIED FOR THEM 2009 YEARS AGO AND HAS ALREADY FORGIVEN US FOR THEM ON THE CROSS. Jesus does not need to die each time we sin. HE DIED ONCE and His sacrifice was perfect.

In the Old Testament we see pictures of Christ in The Sin Offering. A lamb (without blemish or spot) was brought before the High Priest to be sacrificed for the forgiveness of Israel’s sin once a year. The High priest would examine (inspect) the sacrifice and make sure that it was perfect. If the Lamb was perfect, then it would be acceptable to God as a sin-offering and Israel’s sin would be forgiven. The High Priest knew that if the sacrifice was perfect, then God would forgive Israel of all of her failures.

Jesus is our Sacrificial Lamb. He is our sin offering. HE IS PERFECT, without blemish or spot. We may fail, but we have a perfect Sin Offering. Remember, the High Priest inspected the Offering to make sure it was Holy, not Israel. Likewise, when God wants to see whether we are holy or not. HE LOOKS AT THE SACRIFICE (Jesus) God does not look at us. Based on our thoughts, actions, behaviours and past we will fall short of Gods glorious standards. We are all sinners. No one is perfect, not even one. God knew this, and so when He declares us Holy it is not because we did something right-But because Jesus has washed us clean of every impurity.

I love the way Paul saw Jesus. He was in Love with God in everyway. Jesus was his romance, his Joy and his delight and when he describes Him he says: “Jesus is our High Priest forever in the order of Melchizedech.”(Heb.5:6)

I love that! A High Priest is the representative of a nation before God (Heb 5:1). This word “representative” literally means “to imitate, personify or act in place of someone else”.

Representatives personify whoever they represent. If I sent you as my representative to President Zuma, he would view every word you spoke as my words, your every action as my actions, and your every thought as my thoughts. You would be imitating, personifying and acting in place of me!

When the High Priest went before God he was representing and personifying Israel. If he was Holy then God would view Israel as Holy. But if he was evil, God would view Israel as such.

Jesus is our High Priest Forever! He represents us before God always! He imitates us, personifies us and acts on our behalf in Gods presence! OH YES!

Just like Old Covenant High Priests, Jesus represents us before God. If He is Holy, God sees us as Holy. And you know what? JESUS IS HOLY AND ACCEPTABLE. Therefore, because we have this great High Priest we can rejoice. God sees us as Holy and Acceptable.

But Brogan, what if I sin? Will I still be holy and acceptable then?

God will view us as Holy and Acceptable for as long as our High Priest is holy and Acceptable. Ask yourself: Is He? YES HE IS. And here is the magic word: “FOREVER.”

“Jesus is our High Priest FOREVER in the order of Melchizedech”

Jesus represents us before God always. Therefore we are ALWAYS holy and acceptable! Even when you fail and mess up, because, as I have already shared, Jesus forgave you of all of your sin before you were even born by being your Sacrificial Lamb.

But, I am so sinful? Surely God see’s that?

Moses had a word from God that said the Israelites were to kill a lamb and place the blood of the lamb on the doors of their houses. God warned that the Angel of Death would pass-over Egypt at night and kill all the firstborn sons of each family. However, if the Angel of Death saw the blood of a lamb on the doors of a house, he would pass over them and no harm would be done.

The Angel of Death did not inspect the family. He did not ask them their names or ID numbers. He did not check to see if they were black or white, pink or yellow. He did not look in the window to see what they were doing. He did not look for sin.

He looked for one thing only: BLOOD. If he saw blood, then the family would be saved, irrespective of their history, financial statements or sinfulness.

Likewise, when God looks at us he is looking for one thing: BLOOD.

It is no coincidence that Jesus died on the Day of Pentecost. He is our Passover Lamb and His blood has been poured all over us. When God looks at us, when He sees Jesus’ Blood, He is pleased and His wrath and anger pass over us. He knows you are a sinner, but He see’s blood and His wrath is quenched.

But I was taught God was Just. Surely a Just God must punish sin?

God is Just and He takes sin very seriously. He does not make light of our sin. He hates sin. In fact, He takes sin so seriously that He sent His One and Only Son to die on the Cross to suffer the punishment of your sin.

God hates sin BUT HE HAS ALREADY PUNISHED SIN ON JESUS. The Bible tells us that Jesus took all of Gods Wrath and Anger upon himself at the Cross. God’s anger and Wrath are fully satisfied. Jesus took it ALL. There is nothing left for you. You do not have to fear wrath or judgement because Jesus, as your representative, High Priest and Sacrificial Lamb, quenched all of Gods Wrath and Anger on the Cross. All God has left is Love.

The Book of Isaiah teaches that God says “Just as I promised in the time of Noah to never let a flood cover the whole earth again, so now I promise that I will never be angry (disappointed or disillusioned) with you ever again.” (Isaiah 54: 9)

God has promise to never be angry or disappointed or disillusioned with us EVER AGAIN.

If you fail-no anger

If you sin-no disappointment

If you get angry and upset with God-there is still no anger, frustration or disillusionment.


Does this mean that God will bless me even when I sin?

OF COURSE As Paul said, Jesus is our High Priest forever in the Order of Melchizedech. Unlike the AARONIC PRIESTHOOD that had the power to Bless and to Curse, the Melchizedech Priesthood ONLY BLESSES! Oh yeah! Jesus will never send a curse your way because HE TOOK EVERY CURSE UPON HIMSELF AT THE CROSS. Now, He only sends blessings our way! We have complete peace with God and can rest assured in our Salvation.

Melchizedech was the King of Salem. “Salem” means “Peace”. He was the King of Peace, Just like Jesus. So many Christians are living under condemnation, falsely believing that God is angry or upset with them or that He is disappointed with their performance. They are not at Peace.

But Jesus is Peace and we can have peace between ourselves and God through Christ.

I do not know which sins you struggle with. I do not know the hurt and pain the Church has put you through. I do not know where you are or what you are doing. But one thing I know for sure is that JESUS DOES ACTUALLY LOVE YOU. And that God is not angry or disappointed with you. You do not have to be ashamed, or avoid Him. If any one has any right to hate God it is me…but I trust Him because He is not His Church. They may fail me, but He never has.

So does this mean that I may sin whenever I want to?

Sin is still sin, even if we all deal with it and even if Jesus did die on our behalf. It is impossible not to sin, but the Grace of God was given and it “teaches us to say no to unrighteousness and to live soberly in this present age” (Titus 2:12). The Revelation of HOW GOOD GOD IS will catapult you into a life lived in LOVE FOR GOD. Sin will become boring to you. As the Scriptures testify: Those who are forgiven much; Love much. When we learn just how much gunk Jesus has freed us from and forgiven us of, WE WILL LOVE HIM MUCH. We will live for Him naturally.

But how exactly?

If you have received Christ you are a new creation. Your Sinful Nature has been removed and replaced with a Righteous Nature. Innately, you are Righteous. Live out of this Righteousness by Grace.

That however is for a whole new blog, right now all I want you to know is HOW MUCH JESUS ACCEPTS YOU AND LOVES YOU.

Grace and Love Always


Friday, August 7, 2009

This is a teaching from Joseph Prince on Ephesians 1:3. I found it amazingly simple and true:

Blessed With Every Pneumatikos Blessing

Ephesians 1:3: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ",

Some people think that the term “spiritual blessing” refers to only non-visible and intangible blessings like peace and joy. To them, God’s promise of “every spiritual blessing” excludes the tangible blessings of health, prosperity, a healthy marriage and so on. They say things like, “Don’t expect God to remove this tumor because our blessings are only spiritual.”

Beloved, do you know what the word “spiritual” here means? In the original Greek text, it is pneumatikos, which in this context means having properties and characteristics belonging to the Spirit of God. So if you have the pneumatikos blessing of health, for example, it means that it is of the Spirit of God, and therefore does not depend on your exercising or dieting.

A church member had high blood pressure which did not normalize even after he started exercising and eating well. So he stopped being preoccupied with his exercise and diet regimes, and simply rested in the truth that a normal blood pressure was a pneumatikos blessing from God already given to him. In a short time, his blood pressure came down to a healthy level!

The same goes for the pneumatikos blessing of prosperity. It is of the Spirit of God and does not depend on our toiling seven days a week or monitoring the stock market closely.

A church member, who owns a small company, received her pneumatikos blessing of prosperity when she believed that God would cause her small company to be publicly listed. He did. In fact, the company was over-subscribed seven times within the first week! Later on, it even made inroads into Dubai in the Middle East. For a woman to find favor in a male-dominated society like Dubai, it can only be the pneumatikos blessing of favor, which is not subject to the laws of man.

My friend, believe that you have received every pneumatikos blessing, and you will find yourself enjoying blessings that are eternal, just as God is eternal, and of a quality that only the Spirit of God can give!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

A Conversation about Sin, Forgiveness and Grace

I was reminded recently of the conversation I had once had with a friend of mine.
She was looking a little worse for wear, tears were streaming down her soft pink cheeks and it was obvious that she had a lot on her mind.
I made my way up to where she sat; half curled up into a ball in the corner of the youth hall.

"Is everything okay?" I asked as I sat beside her.
"I guess so-" came the reply.
"I don't buy it...speak to me..."
"Ah, it's nothing, Brogan. Really-"
"It can't be nothing, can it? I mean, why would you be so bothered about nothing?"
She sighed deeply and lowered her head to her knees, hiding her face from my view.

"Is God judging me? Is He angry with me?"

I sat up. It really was not the response I was expecting. I thought her sadness may be rooted in "boyfriend" trouble or even a problem at school. After all, those were the replies I was most used to...

"Why would you ask that-" I replied dumbly.
"Because I am not perfect...because I fail...because I sin..."
"And now you fear Gods judgement?"
"What did you do?" (Again a dumb question)
"Sin is sin, right? So it really doesn't matter what I did...the Law is a composite whole. You taught me that! If we have broken one commandment then we have broken the entire law. Surely, if God is just, He would punish me for my law-breaking, even if it were accidental?"

I was stunned. She was really thinking. She was asking the important questions. I could not help but smile proudly at her reply.

"I don't think this is funny," she protested.
I cleared my throat and nodded in agreement, "NO I don’t think it is funny either. I am smiling because you have asked such a clever question-"
She grinned, "-and the answer is?"
"WELL, before I answer your question, let me ask you one. Do you believe that Jesus died for you?"
"Of Course-"
" forgive me of my pay the save me from the punishment that was due by quenching Gods anger..."

Suddenly a light went on!

"Brogan, surely not! Are you saying that God won't punish me now for my sin, because he has already punished Jesus for my sin (in my place)?"
I nodded gently, "but you said it, not me!"
"But...what if I sin now after being saved? What if I fail as a believer?"
"Lisa, we all fail, that is why we need grace. But let me ask you this: how many of your sins were covered by the Blood of Jesus on the Cross? One sin? Two sins…"
"No, not just one or two...ALL OF THEM SILLY..."

Suddenly another light went on!
Suddenly she began to laugh hysterically!
Suddenly she brightened up!
And without even thinking twice she said aloud:
"WHOA! That is amazing! Is that the gospel? It all makes sense now! How did I miss it? And to think, I have been living in fear all this time when I could have been living by faith!"

Friends, Jesus died for all of your sins. YOU ARE FORGIVEN. God is not about to punish you. yes, he does discipline his children but it is always in love and through love. Gods discipline is not punishment or judgement. You can walk with your head held high and enter Gods Throne Room of Grace with confidence because you are THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN CHRIST JESUS. FOREVER.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Honest Christianity

My first attempts to begin a blog dedicated to GRACE (Gods ability to accept us regardless of spiritual pedigree or qualifications) were scrapped within a matter of seconds. Ironically, this was because I felt un-qualified for the job. Surely if one is to represent GRACE in its entirety they should live a perfect life, have a perfect family and simply be perfect?

I think NOT

The world is not looking for Perfection, they want realism. A dear (unsaved) friend of mine mentioned once that she would accept Christ “if Christians were honest about their struggles and did not try to hide behind social masks.”

I have to agree. It is the unfortunate fact that we have been taught to be perfect before loving God, moving in God or being used by God. This false teaching has robbed many of the joy of their salvation. It has created a burdening load over the shoulders of many Christians.

Many prominent Pastors teach that God only uses those who “act in righteousness and perfection at all times”. This is not true. God uses the weak and foolish things of this world to shame the wise (1 Cor. 1:27).

He does not only use the strong and sinless (for who is truly without sin?).

Rather, God accepts us NOW in our imperfection. No strings attached.

Just as Mark Darcy confessed to Bridget in the fictitious film Bridget Jones Diary: “I like you, JUST AS YOU ARE”

God says to all of us: I LOVE YOU JUST AS YOU ARE

We do not have to be perfect in our own right to be loved, used and moved by God.

If only we could break free from the conditioning of the past and realise that God has qualified us in His Son JESUS. He is not looking at us through eyes judgemental. Rather He views us through the Sacrifice of Jesus Christ AS PERFECT FOREVER even if we do mess up.

And so, if you are looking for a perfect blog written by a perfect person then keep looking. What you will find here is reality saturated in the Grace of God; a blog written by a broken man to a broken world. You will find Spelling errors and honesty.

But hopefully, amongst all of the imperfection I or this blog may contain: I PRAY YOU FIND CHRIST AND THE PERFECTION OF HIS LOVE.