Good News Message

  • “The Righteous will live by faith.” Romans 1:17

    We continue our study of Paul’s letter to the Roman Church.  Picking up at verse 8 of Chapter One, Paul writes:
    “First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the World.  God, whom I serve in my spirit in preaching the gospel of His Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you in my prayers at all times, and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to you.  I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong – that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith. I do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that I planned many times to come to you (but have been prevented from doing so until now) in order that I might have a harvest among you, just as I have had among other Gentiles.  I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish.  That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are in Rome.  For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew and then to the Gentile.  For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed – a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”  (Romans 1: 8-17)
    Paul was introducing himself to the Romans.  As he did, he was teaching.  Here he said, “First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ.”  This was to emphasize the point that Jesus is the one and only mediator between God, and mankind.  He wanted to keep this primary point, primary.  It is through Christ that God sends His love and forgiveness to us.  It is through Christ that we send our love to our Father of Love. As the Word says in (1 Timothy 2:5), “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Jesus Christ, who gave himself as a ransom for all people.”  It is through the Love, and Life of Christ that we are children of God.  It is what He has done for us, not what we have done, or can do for him that brings the relationship of Love.  He has done the work at the cross, and resurrection.  He does the work needed to protect us, and provide for us each day.  Our only part in this amazing act of Love is to Believe it, and walk by Faith in it.  “The Righteous will live by faith.” When we believe, we become righteous in His sight.  We walk in ‘Fellowship’ with Him in Spirit, and as we walk with Him, we move toward wanting to be like Him.  We desire more and more to live in, and exhibit the Gospel – the Good News.
    As Paul said, “In the Gospel the righteousness of God is revealed – a righteousness that is by faith from first to last.”  This is what Paul wanted for each of the ones he was writing to.  This is what the Lord wants for each of us. A righteousness that brings Fellowship, and Oneness, and unconditional Love.  He has provided it.  Let us live in it with joy, and gladness, and faith each day.💚 Let us tell the Good News at every opportunity.  Let us show it in the Love that we live by.
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  • “Thanksgiving”

    I pray that you had a wonderful time of blessing, and being blessed, as you celebrated Thanksgiving over the last few days.  Even though my wife of 61 years has not felt well, she has participated in the celebration as much as possible.  Her birthday fell on the same day as Thanksgiving as it often has over the years.  Our children cooked, and brought over our Thanksgiving, and Birthday meal, and it was wonderful.  They live about 15 minutes from us.  To continue the celebration, they came over yesterday and did a deep cleaning of the entire house.  What a celebration.  What a blessing.  Thank you, Lord!!!

    I realize not everyone could give, or receive this kind of love, but as we can, let us show love at every opportunity- however that may be.  The Word says in 1 John 4:16 that “God IS Love. Whoever lives in love, lives in God, and God in them. ”   We are here, at this time in the place where we are, wherever that may be to represent our God of Love in the way that only we can.
    Each of us has a Holy Calling to do that for our Lord, and for each other.  The Word says, “God who has saved us and called us with a Holy Calling, not according to our works, but according to His own Purpose and Grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began.” (2 Timothy 1:9).  Before time began, He knew us, and had our lives charted out.  Our primary purpose was to bring Love into the world, for that is who He is, as we live it in words and actions.  Of course there are many other things we are here to do, but this is primary.
    Much is going on in the world right now with this strange virus attacking so many.  Different reactions in people around the world.  But this we know, our Lord of Love is completely aware of what is going on. There is a Purpose.  Let us give Him thanks for the things we can do, and show His love to all those in our lives as we live in His Love with Thanksgiving. 💚
    Have a wonderful week, as we walk each day in Love, and Thanksgiving, Beloveds of God.
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  • “We begin our study of the first section of the incredible Book of Romans: ‘What to Believe’ as we are ‘Transformed by the renewing of our mind.”

    As you know, Romans is broken into two sections by Paul.  Section one is called, “What to believe.”  Section two is “How to live it.”.  We have just completed our study of the second section of the Book of Romans – verses 12-1 thru 16-27.  I wanted to start with that section because in verse 2, of chapter 12 where this teaching begins, it starts with one of the greatest truths that Paul speaks.  It says  “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

    In all that we study, and learn, this truth comes forth again, and again:  “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”  In many places, we are taught things that we believe are true, and we often have little to lead us to the actual truth, but when we see it, we know it.  As we hear Paul speak from his magnificent writings, truth comes to renew our mind.  We are then transformed. We literally become a new creation. This is the reason we must always be open to being changed – transformed – if we have only been given a partial truth we can be led astray, or into the wrong path.  Having a strong faith in what we believe is vital.  But if we are shown a truth, and it clears our mind to follow that truth, we should always be open to what our Lord wants to show us, and what He wants us to have to grow in.
    This is, and certainly should be, something we are very careful about.  We should always be careful if someone is suggesting we change from what we have believed to be the truth, and we should always take it to the Lord for confirmation, or even consideration.  But if He reveals it is a new revelation from Him we should be ready for that new level.
    Paul had heard that people from all over the world were being touched in this new Church at Rome by the people from the many different places, and countries that were in it.  We can rest assured the Holy Spirit was deeply and greatly touching those who were there putting it all together. It is thought the founders of this church came together at the Pentecost Festival held 50 days after the Passover Festival.  After 40 days from His resurrection, Jesus had ascended back to Heaven to take His place as King on the Throne of Grace, beside our Heavenly Father. Pentecost, was held 50 days after PassOver and the Holy Spirit came in power in a rushing mighty wind and Love as we see in Acts; to be God here on earth and bring the Spirit of Jesus, and Spirit of our Holy Father here to make mankind His Temple.  The Place of Worship was being transformed from a very ‘religious’ meeting place to a ‘spiritual’ meeting place as the Holy Spirit was given the power to come forth in unconditional Love, not Law.  This was a new way to worship. This was now a personal relationship.  This was now Father and Child relationship.  King and Personal Friend relationship.  This was like a flowing river bringing beauty and freshness to wherever it flowed. The time had come to be ‘transformed by the renewing of our mind.’ 💚  There was a new Faith.  A new level.💚
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  • “He gave me the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God.” Romans 15: 16

    As we continue our study of Romans, we pick up at verse 14, of Chapter 15.  Paul was sharing some personal notes of things the Lord had called him to do.  He compliments and  encourages members of the Church to do the same.   Each of us has a calling.  Each of us are to proclaim the gospel of God.  He writes:

    “I myself am convinced, my brothers and sisters, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with knowledge and competent to instruct one another. Yet I have written you quite boldly on some points to remind you of them again, because of the grace God gave me to be a Minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles. He gave me the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God sanctified  by the Holy Spirit.  Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus in my service to God.  I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done …by the power of signs and wonders through the power of the Spirit of God.”         Romans 15: 14 -19
    As Paul begins to conclude this magnificent letter to the Roman Church, he speaks of things each of us need to be reminded of.  They are in no order of importance, for they are all important.  He begins by complimenting them, telling them he believed in their ability to teach each other because of being filled with knowledge, and goodness.  He continues, using himself as an example, by telling them to remind each other of things they knew, and needed to express.  So often we are moving so fast into new territory, we forget to talk about who we are- who we have become in Christ.  For instance Paul wants us to remember it is by Grace we are saved. There is no work, or works, we can do that will give us the right to walk with Him in the Spirit.  As the Word says,  “For by Grace, we are saved. It is the gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast.”  We sometimes forget that as we get caught up in the importance of what we are doing.  We can begin thinking this is about how well we can do this job, and not remember to look at HIs Grace, and feel the great power the Grace He has put into us as we go.
    When we accept Christ as Savior, and Lord, and come to know all that means to us and for us, we must remember we all become ministers of Christ Jesus.  Revelations tells us that “Jesus is the ruler of the kings of the earth.”   The Word says, “To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood, and has made us to be a kingdom of priests to serve His God and Father – to Him be glory and power for ever and ever.:  Amen.”  Paul wants us to remember that. He wants us to remember who we are. When we accept Christ as Lord and Savior we become royalty.  There are many jobs to do, each one jobs of royalty. We are given the ability to do the job well that we are called to do – regardless of what it is.  The power of the Holy Spirit is in us to make that happen as we walk with Him, in HIm.  He brings to us “the Spirit of Power, and Love, and Sound mind.”  As we let Him lead we become bold in doing what we are called to do. We have a priestly duty.  We are royalty.  We have the power given unto us to do it.  Let us proclaim the Gospel of God.  “Jesus Saves”  He is unconditional Love. Father wants us to tell the world of His saving Grace, and Love.  He wants us to proclaim the Gospel. . He wants us all to be with Him in Heaven forever.  He transforms us into a new creation, and calls us to tell the Good News, to proclaim the gospel to our Brothers and Sisters.  Let it be so. 💚
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  • “Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to Peace, and Mutual Edification.” Romans 14: 19

    As we continue our study of the Book of Romans, we pick up at verse 19, of chapter 14.  Paul is teaching on eating certain foods, and carrying out certain rules of worship when eating at that time.  When they should be eaten, etc.   Since this was a new Christian Church, those who had been in a synagogue were finding things different from the rules they had to follow before.  Some were happy, and some were confused about what this new thing called Grace.  What grace would allow, and find acceptable. Paul taught them saying:

    “Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.  Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. ‘All food is clean’ but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble.  It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.  So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God.  Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves.  But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.”  Romans 14: 19-23
    Someone said, “Sin is not just a private matter.  Everything we do affects others, and we have to think of them constantly.  God created us to be interdependent, not independent.   We who are strong in our faith must without pride, or condemning thoughts, treat others with love, patience and self restraint.”   We must be fully convinced that our words and actions are approved by our Lord, or they should not be done or said.  If we have a question, let us wait until the Lord brings us the answers we need – by someone, or through something – if we have a question, the Lord will lead us to the answer, and to Peace, and to Mutual Edification. Let us trust Him, and be open as to how He will lead us to the answer for this question, and for others that will arise.  Just Trust in His Divine Love to always teach what is right. Know that the Holy Spirit is in each of us who believe, to do and teach in His own time, and in His own way.  That is excitement and good news as we learn and grow. This is Peace knowing the Great Teacher is always ready to teach, and Lead us to truth.
    Love you So, beautiful Children of the Most High. Have a wonderful day, blessed in all things, and in all ways.💚 Walk in His Beautiful Peace, and Edification.
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  • “So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.” Romans 14:12

    We continue our study of the Book of Romans.  Picking up at verse 10 of Chapter 14, we are asked to look at the issue of judging one another.  It is so easy to fall into this practice, and strangely, most of the time we do not even realize we are doing it.  The bottom line is we do not have the authority to judge each other, so we have to be keenly aware of what we are thinking about our brothers, and sisters.  The Holy Spirit gives Paul these words.  He said,

    “You, then, why do you judge your brother or Sister?  Or why do you treat them with contempt?  For we will all stand before God’s judgement seat.   It is written:
     ‘As surely as I live, says the Lord, every knee will bow before Me; every tongue will acknowledge and confess to God.’  So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.”  (Romans 14:10-12)
    As is stated in the Word, each person is accountable to Christ. And when it is time, they will indeed give an account of themselves to Christ, but not to others.  As a body, we are asked to be uncompromising in the body of Christ – as the Church body that represents Christ to the visible world.  We are asked to stand against things in the body that will not be in our good interest, or represent who we really are.  We are asked to stand against things of the flesh, such as adultery, theft, murder, sexual immorality, hatred, discord, envey, drunkeness, jealousy, selfish ambition, etc.  (Galatians 6:19-20.)  One or more of these things can and may happen to a believing Christian, but there again we do not judge that person.  It can bring sickness to the Church body if too much emphasis is put on it, and it is dwelt upon.  We may fall into one of these because of allowing ourselves to go too far in the flesh in an area while not being aware of it until it is too late.  All of a sudden, we are there even though we did not intend to be.  But when we present ourselves to our Lord of Grace, the Word says we will be forgiven if we repent, give an account of ourselves to God,  ask our Lord sincerely for forgiveness and have a sincere desire to turn from whatever the mistake was.  Christ Jesus stepped in for us, and died on a cross to give us that privilege. That is why we go to Him.  May we never let that gift be misused, or neglected.
    The Word says, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked.  A man reaps what he sows.  Whoever sows to please their flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Holy Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.  Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Galatians 6: 7-9.)  Let us never judge, but rather always give an account of ourselves to our God of Love.  Only He can cleanse us, and set us free from sin and the destruction of it.
    Blessings and love upon each of you, God’s Beloveds.  Let us remember daily how very much we are Divinely Loved, and never hesitate to go to our Lord of Love asking Him to  show us the right Way.💚  For He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
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  • “Christ died, and returned to life, so that He might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.” Romans 14: 9

    As we return to our study of the Book of Romans, we pick up at verse 5, of Chapter 14.  Sorry about last week.  I had the message prepared, and ready to go, and it went away through a series of things happening I had not seen before on my Computer.  I assumed the Lord said “No” to that one, and took it out.  Okay, I know you might have a little trouble thinking the Lord did that, but ……
    Anyway, we pick up at verse 5, as Paul continues his comments on “The Weak and the Strong”.  He writes: “One person considers one day more sacred than another: another considers every day alike.  Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind.  Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord.  Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God, and whoever abstains does so to the Lord, and gives thanks to God.  For none of us lives for ourselves alone; and none of us dies for ourselves alone.  If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord.  So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. For this reason, Christ died and returned to life; so that He might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.”  Romans 14:  5-9
    This is truth that goes from the natural that we know, to the supernatural that we have to be in the Spirit to understand.  I was approaching the passage from a different perspective last week.  I believe I was not making it clear that whatever we do, and whenever we do it, we must stand on this truth:  “Jesus is the Lord of both the dead, and the living.”  Leaving this life just means we have moved to a different level.  We will all be in Heaven, but we will not all be the same because we are living different lives in different places here on earth. We will come from different backgrounds, and see some things we are surprised with, but will be delighted in the fact that we now see it as part of who we are.  We shall see things that we thought were wrong but know then they are all a part of who we are in Christ Jesus.
     Let us go forth each day knowing there will be things we do not understand, but as we trust in our Lord of Love, Christ Jesus, all shall be well.  Let us give Thanks to our Abba Father for helping us to see that Jesus is Lord of All, and that as we walk in the Power and Love of the Holy Spirit, we walk in truth.  “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you Free.💚
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  • “The Weak, and the Strong.” Romans 14: 2

    As we continue our study of the Book of Romans, we pick up at verse one of Chapter 14.  Paul is discussing the different ways we see things, and feel about things because of our past.  He asks us to respect each other, and be there for each other as we work together for the Lord.

    He writes:  “Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters.  One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another whose faith is weak eats only vegetables. The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them.  Who are you to judge someone else’s servant?  To their own master; servants stand or fall.  And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.”
    (Romans 14: 1-4)
    We are all weak in some areas, and strong in others.  It has been said, “Our faith is strong in an area if we can survive contact with those who are living wrong without falling into their patterns.  Our faith is weak in an area if we must avoid certain activities, or people, or places in order to protect our spiritual life. We want to influence others for good, rather than be influenced by them if that influence is harmful, but we must be comfortable and strong.  We must not put ourselves in uncomfortable or unsure positions if we know we are not ready to stand without question in our mind, and discuss why we feel the way we do.
    Paul said, “Accept the one whose faith is weak in an area without quarreling over disputable matters.”   Be open to discussions.  Differences should not be feared or avoided, but accepted and handled with Love.   Don’t expect everyone to agree, but be willing to discuss the matter with an attitude of “let us learn together.”  Let us seek what the Word teaches, be ready to accept change on either side of the discussion if shown where a wrong opinion may have been, and always agree to discuss with respect .  Differences need not cause division.  They can be a source of learning and richness in our relationships.   Let us never have an attitude of being correct in everything in our spiritual walk.  Let us always be ready to learn, and ready to teach what we believe to be correct. Whether we feel weak, or strong in our faith, let us grow in all areas as we study and ask the Holy Spirit to bring truth to us from His Presence, and from the Word, and from circumstances the Lord brings, or allows to come into our Lives.
    May the Lord bless you in all things, and in all ways, God’s Beloveds.  Learn and grow and become as one in Faith in Him as you walk together in His Love.
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  • “Clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 13:14

    We continue our study of the Book of Romans.  Picking up at verse 11, of chapter 13, under the direction of the Holy Spirit, Paul writes:

    “And do this, understanding the present time:  The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.  The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.  Let us behave decently , as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery , not in dissension and jealousy.  Rather clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.” (Romans 13:14)
    The night refers to the present time.  The day refers to the time of Christ’s return. We do not know when the Lord shall return – we just know He will because He said He would.  The Lord Himself did not know when He was here the first time, and maybe still does not know when the time is set for Him to return to this world.  We just need to remember that when Abba Father says, “It is time”, that day it shall happen in the twinkle of an eye.. Life on this earth shall be done.  This we know, the time is shorter every day, so we need to be prepared for everything in this life to change.  We must do this by being fully aware of  the way we live, of  the way we act and of the way we speak.
    The Word says, we must clothe ourselves with Christ, to be ready.  One of the ways we do this is by being baptized if possible. We are shown this is not mandatory because of the way Christ told the thief at the cross who said unto our Lord, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”  Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you,  today you will be with Me in paradise.’ (Luke 23: 42,43.) But if at all possible do follow Jesus in Baptism for He went to John to be baptized for the world to see.  Let us let the world see we follow Him as this act of Love for our Jesus, and each other is shown. Another way is to exemplify the qualities Jesus showed while He was here on earth. Show Love, Humility, Truth, Service and help to the flock in the way we are shown.  We pray to do what Christ would do if He were here in person.
    And then let us make certain to NOT Do some things.  We must Not give our desires of the flesh the opportunity to act if it would not glorify our Lord Jesus.
    As we do these things,we clothe ourselves with Christ.  He is in us, and on us.  He is our model.  He is who we want to look like, and act like, and be like.  As we call upon the Holy Spirit to bring these things upon us, or to control the desires of the flesh, we are clothed with Jesus.  We bring glory to Him, and Peace unto ourselves. 💚  Let us show His Love each day by being clothed with Him.
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  • “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another.” Romans 13:8

    We continue our study of the Book of Romans.  Picking up at verse 8, of Chapter 13, we read the words of Paul as he explains how “Love Fulfills the Law”. He writes:

    “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.  The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery.”, “You shall not murder,.”
    “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other commands there may be, are summed up in this one command:  “Love your neighbor as yourself.”  Love does no harm to a neighbor.  Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.’.  Romans 13: 8-10
    Someone said, “Why is love for others called a debt?  We are permanently in debt to Christ for the lavish love He has poured out on us, but this is a debt like no other.  The only way we can even begin to repay this debt is by fulfilling our obligation to love others in turn.  Because Christ’s love will always be infinitely greater than ours, we will always have the obligation to love our neighbors.”
    Somehow many of us have gotten the idea that self-love is wrong;  but if we hear the command to “love our neighbor as ourselves”,  it does not make sense if we feel that self-love is wrong. For instance if we have low self-esteem, and do not care about our health and well being, should we willingly let others go hungry if there is food?  Of course not.   We probably try to clothe ourselves reasonably well, but we know we would give clothing to those who may not have any if we saw the need.  We probably try not to let ourselves be cheated or injured.  We would want the same for our neighbors as that, and would not allow it if we saw it going on, and could stop it. We would want the same for us by those in our lives.  So obviously to say that self-love is wrong is not what our Lord is talking about when He says, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” The Lord wants us to love who we are in Him.  He wants us to help others and teach them about Love – His Love.  We are greatly loved by Him.  We are covered in and by His Grace..  Let us Love ourselves because of that truth, and give Him all that we are.  Let us love those in our life as we love ourselves.
    The Word says, “Whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.”  Paul is not talking about the 10 Commandments when he says “fulfilled the law”.  He is saying the Law is fulfilled by Love, and that is how we are to live. Jesus has fulfilled the old Law. He has done the work.  We are covered in grace, and faith in Christ in the new covenant that replaced the old Law.  It is a law of Love. God’s Love for us, His Children, that He created for us, and fulfilled it Himself.  The Law of love we want to live in and under,  is a level of life we want to operate in because it is our desire to do so – not because we will get into trouble if we don’t.  It is indeed a debt we owe our Lord Jesus, but it is not like a debt between people or banks or institutions that can be paid off. It is a beautiful debt that flows like a brook of water.  It is a brook of love flowing from one generation to the next. As all water does, it brings life and sustenance.  He said, “Love one another.”  Let us desire greatly to do so,  That brings a beautiful Life as we do.  A debt that we will honor, and pass to the next generation.  A debt that we want to pay because of our Love for our God of Love, and our love for those in our life.  Let us pay on it each day.💚
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May you be “Encouraged, and “Strengthened”, and “United”, God’s Beloveds, as we Lift up Christ Jesus, Glorify the Father, and Magnify the Holy Spirit.