Baptism at Singles Retreat - 147 Baptized!!!

*******************Baptism at Singles Retreat 147 Baptized!!! ***********************

* Sharing times in the Word and looking for growth. Let's Commune Together!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Don’t pay me what I am Due!

Scripture Read: Romans 4:1 What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, has found?2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God.3 For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”4 Now to the one who works, his wage is not credited as a favor, but as what is due.5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness,6 just as David also speaks of the blessing on the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:7 “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven, And whose sins have been covered.8 “Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account.”

Application: Credit - λογίζομαι logízomai; reason, word, account. To reckon, impute, number. Actually, the verb logízomai means to put together with one’s mind, to count, to occupy oneself with reckonings or calculations. To count something to somebody means to reckon something to a person, to put to his account, either in his favor or for what he must be answerable

Due - ὀφείλημα opheílēma; to owe. Debt, that which is owed, which is strictly due, Paul then uses ὀφείλημα in the broader sense of obligation at R. 4:4 in the context of the doctrine of justification. Where there are real works a reward enters in by obligation, as something owed in return, and not simply by grace.

These two words really make this whole issue come alive – because what is “due” can swing both ways. Think about it - Yes if we could work enough to please God – righteousness would be owed us. If we understand the gospel – we know that cannot happen. However – looking at this from the other direction it emphasizes the great gift that He afforded us that now has been credited to us. We are DUE punishment – just like You say Lord. We have worked hard to earn it – not only do we all fall short – most choose to go their own way and none seek You. Your Son took what was do all of us and then credited us with righteousness. Thank You Father for not giving us what You owe us – We want Your grace!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Believe – don’t Boast

Scripture Read: Romans 3: 27 Where then is boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? Of works? No, but by a law of faith.28 For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law.29 Or is God the God of Jews only? Is He not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also, 30 since indeed God who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith is one.31 Do we then nullify the Law through faith? May it never be! On the contrary, we establish the Law.
Application:  Again, because of Your Word Oh Lord we should have already understood this. We have nothing to boast in – for our justification is never based on any work we do – it is based on our trusting belief in what Christ has done! This should be pretty solid in our thinking and way of life. Perhaps though, we need to consider if we have departed from walking by faith to divert back to works when it comes to daily living. We are not claiming that good deeds are not a part of the walk – they are the evidence of that walk – but perhaps we are trying to please God by our deeds rather than our faith. Father we need to walk by faith first – trusting more in what You are doing in us, then the works will follow. Do we believe that You are the satisfier of our life? That walking in trusting belief in what You are working inside us will produce the deeds You desire? If we believe this then two things should happen – sin will get less of our attention because our focus will be on You and as we walk by faith – good deeds will be produced – our effort will g into yielding not producing. Help us oh Lord! Spirit of God fill us with the hunger to believe You for every facet of our life. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Scripture Read: Romans 3:19 Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God;20 because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.21 But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction;23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus;25 whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed;26 for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. 

Application: Justified - δικαιόω dikaióō; To justify. Verbs which end in -óō generally indicate bringing out that which a person is or that which is desired, but not usually referring to the mode in which the action takes place. In the case of dikaióō, it means to bring out the fact that a person is righteous. For Paul the word δικαιοῦν does not suggest the infusion of moral qualities, a justum efficere in the sense of the creation of right conduct. It implies the justification of the ungodly who believe, on the basis of the justifying action of God in the death and resurrection of Christ.

Redemption ἀπολύτρωσις apolútrōsis;  to let go free for a ransom, which is from apó = from, and lutróō = to redeem. Redemption. The recalling of captives (sinners) from captivity (sin) through the payment of a ransom for them, Deliverance on account of the ransom paid as spoken of the deliverance from the power and consequences of sin which Christ procured by laying down His life as a ransom

Father, each time we are confronted with this reality we find ourselves speechless – how You could redeem us in such a way as to create righteousness in us? This is far beyond our understanding – our intellect just sees this as a Duet. 29:29 moment, but our spirit and heart – even though comprehension is not present – the enormous gratitude, the never ending reality that we can never repay, the awesome knowledge that You are not looking for us to repay – just a relationship – this takes our breath away. Dad – How You do what You do will always elude our finite mind. BUT why You do what You do stuns us to the core. You did this for everyone knowing that so many would not care or even believe in You. Your love is far beyond my understanding but we thank You that it is right at our fingertips all the time. We love You Father!  

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Need to Know

Scripture Read: Romans 3:9 What then? Are we better than they? Not at all; for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin; 10 as it is 
written, “There is none righteous, not even one;11 There is none who understands, There is none who seeks for God;12 All have turned aside, together they have become useless; There is none who does good, There is not even one.”13 “Their throat is an open grave, With their tongues they keep deceiving,” “The poison of asps is under their lips”;14 “Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness”;15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood,16 Destruction and misery are in their paths,17 And the path of peace they have not known.”18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

Application:  Father, could these two verses be where our biggest struggles exist? We do not understand You and many times we do not have the proper fear – no awe of Your holiness.  We need to know these two issues are what our flesh plays on in the fight with sin. Many times we are exasperated over this. Some might say, we are being too hard on ourselves – but we do know better. Lord – we do not desire pain - so we are not hoping it takes that – but we do want You to know that we desire to learn these issues as soon as possible. We desire to see a renewed understanding of Who You are and the Fear we should have for You. Help me oh God!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

No Argument

Scripture Read: Romans 3:1 Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the benefit of circumcision? 2 Great in every respect. First of all, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God.3 What then? If some did not believe, their unbelief will not nullify the faithfulness of God, will it?4 May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, “That You may be justified in Your words, And prevail when You are judged.”5 But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, what shall we say? The God who inflicts wrath is not unrighteous, is He? (I am speaking in human terms.)6 May it never be! For otherwise, how will God judge the world?7 But if through my lie the truth of God abounded to His glory, why am I also still being judged as a sinner?8 And why not say (as we are slanderously reported and as some claim that we say), “Let us do evil that good may come”? Their condemnation is just

Application:  This section should be obvious to us. We all have many weaknesses – may this never be one of them. Hopefully we don’t think this way Lord – Our sin and Your judgment is never an indictment against You – it is a vindication of Your righteousness! Every time we sin – we see how right You are that we all fall short, that we all go our own way. Your holiness is exactly that - holiness and every time we sin – we do not prove anything except exactly what You have stated about our sinful behavior and nature. We want to live Holy – Help us Dad!!