By: Stephen A. Brown, Marketplace Ministries, inc.
Psalm 119:130, “The teaching of your word gives light, so even the simple can understand.” (NLT) Mark Twain wrote, “It’s not the things in the Bible I don’t understand that bother me, it’s the things I do.” The Word will often convict the reader by identifying sin. Anyone who claims the Bible contradicts itself should research the scriptures, for there is no evidence to support this claim. The Word of God does contradict a sinful lifestyle.
Everyone likes the smell of a new car; but it doesn’t take long for it to disappear. Followed by dirt on the floor mats, coffee stains on the console, and accumulated fast-food wrappers. 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation …” When we become new, we have that sweet smell of salvation. However, sometimes we lose that fragrance by failing to renew ourselves daily with prayer and Bible study. It’s time for a car wash.
None of us likes sudden crises, but God allows those times to place our faith in the Father. Jerry Bridges wrote, “God will never allow any action against you that is not in accord with His will for you.” I know that is tough to read; it was tough to write. Spiritual maturity comes by trusting in the Lord. “As long as we continue to trust in our own abilities we shall avail nothing.” D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. Hebrews 4:15, Let us approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and grace to help us in our time of need.
I had lunch with two Christian brothers at Doug’s Place in Emerson, Georgia. Country Cooking at its BEST. The cafe’s bathroom has a sign: Wash you hands, say your prayers, cause Jesus and germs are everywhere. Germs are on every surface, such as a door knob, and transfer at the touch. But how do we know Jesus is everywhere. After all, He ascended into heaven and is preparing a place for us. When Jesus went up, His Holy Spirit came down, allowing the Lord to be present in all the world. John 4:24, “God is Spirit . . .”
1 Coronicles 29:14 “For all things come from You.” There are some 150,000 Life Coaches (personalized helper who for a fee, will partner with you in designing your future). For Christians, our Life Coach is the indwelling Holy Spirit. Einstein wrote, “Any intelligent fool can make things more complicated.” Isaac Newton once wrote, “Truth is found in simplicity.” Jesus is simply all we need (John 14:6).
In 1995 the U.S. Stock Market experienced a modern record downturn. Investors lost 37.6% of their investments. In 2008 investors lost 37%. Market experts caution investors, warning of possible negative results due to uncertain economic relations with China.
I recall my study of economics in college, and how stocks and bonds chart up and down at a fast pace. There is one investment that will always pay positive returns: invest our time, talents, and treasure in growing the Kingdom of God. Mark 10:30 ” . . . and in the age to come eternal life.”
Continuing with John 14:6, Jesus said, “I am the way . . ” There is only one way to be physically born. Whether it’s in the womb or test tube, there has to be a natural union of a sperm and egg to produce birth. When Jesus said, “You must be born again…” (John 3:3), He was speaking of the super-natural union of a soul with the Savior. Being born of the Holy Spirit makes us a new creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).
John 14:6, Jesus said, “I am the way . . .” If we say Jesus is the only way to God, we risk being labeled intolerant. When Larry King interviewed Billy Graham and his son Franklin, he asked them if Jesus was in fact the only way. Both replied YES, and explained that Jesus stated He was the only way, and He is not a liar. You and I know who is the LIAR. Other religious leaders interviewed by Larry King stated there were many paths to God. A South American missionary hired a guide to lead him to a remote village. After several hours of slashing their way through the thick jungle, the missionary asked his guide if he really know the way. The guide dropped his large knife, opened his hands to display scars, and said, “Follow me for I know the way.”