Friday, March 8, 2013

Transformed



“And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory,
 are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory,
   which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

 2 Corinthians 3:18 (NIV)



a Google picture.

“. . . we, who with unveiled faces. . .” In Old Testament times, the people could not look directly on the face of God because of His being holy. Because Jesus rent the veil between the holy and the holiest of holy places in the Temple, we can look directly into God’s face
“. . . all reflect the Lord’s glory. . .” Paul reminds the Corinthian believers that he and they reflect Jesus’ glory. This is a strong statement. Can we imagine if someone told us we are a mirror image of the Lord?
“. . . are being transformed into his likeness. . .” He tells the church that they being changed to resemble Jesus. Are we 21st Century Christians being changes into His likeness or that of the world’s?
“. . . with ever-increasing glory. . .” This altering of the people is dynamic. Paul had experienced this changing in himself- first in his heart, then in how he lived. Here he describes this phenomenon as a progression.
“. . . which comes from the Lord. . .” He identifies the source of this process. It originates with the Lord. If we communicate with God on a daily basis, we have the privilege of hearing from Him when we need to.
“. . . who is the Spirit.” Paul explains that God works through the Holy Spirit in order for this transformation to be evident.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Abound More and More


 

“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more
 and more in knowledge and depth of insight. . . .
 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through
Jesus Christ-to the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:9, 11 (NIV)

“And this is my prayer. . .” Paul demonstrated that he cared about the Philippian believers. He desired certain things for the people. He expressed that desire as a matter of prayer. I wonder how many TV ‘evangelists’ can say this about their followers and it be true?
“. . . that your love may abound more and more. . .” Paul’s prayer request is simple. He asks that the love of the believers at Philippi, and those who come later-us, to grow to overflowing in order for those they meet to feel the love of Jesus.
“. . . in knowledge and depth of insight. . . .” This is interesting. Paul’s request is for growth of their (and our) knowledge and insight. We live in what is called the Age of Information. On the floor of my high school at the top of the steps in the main entry was the phrase, “Knowledge is Power.” Taken in a human context, this is true. Paul didn’t say he requested the Philippian Christians to have power or riches. He asked God to give them understanding and discernment.
“. . . filled with the fruit of righteousness. . .” The Apostle asks Jehovah that those believers be sated with the fruit of living holy before God.
“ . . that comes through Jesus Christ. . .” Paul knows that the best traits only come through Jesus. Those of us who face extreme situations caused by others as a way of life have learned this fact.
“ . . to the glory and praise of God.” Paul and all devout believers attempt to live their lives for the Lord God. Have I always done this, No, I have to be sincere, I haven’t. However, God is teaching me every day how to live for Him.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Next Door Savior by Max Lucado


    

What should we do with Jesus? Should we worship Him from afar? Max Lucado has given us a new way to look at Christ. In his book, Next Door Savior, he shows us how we can relate to Jesus as someone close to us. The book, 21 chapters long, is divided into two parts-No Person He Won’t Touch and No Place He Won’t Go. At the back, he includes a study guide.

This book challenged me. It made me think about Jesus being close to me as opposed to Him being ‘out there’. By his style as well as his subject matter, Mr. Lucado held my attention. At the beginning of each chapter, a scripture reference appeared. The narrative that follows deals with the scripture passage. Mr. Lucado interpreted the message of each Biblical passage in a very appealing way, presenting these examples in a way that communicated Biblical truth in a way that 21st Century believers can relate to. I would recommend Next Door Savior to anyone wishing to grow spiritually. It would make an outstanding study book for a small group study.

I received this book free from the publisher Thomas Nelson- through BookSneeze, in exchange for an impartial, unbiased, and fair review.

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