September 16, 2012 Glorification: the way God sees you

Glorification: the way God sees you

How does God see you, a believer?  He sees you as justified by the substitution of His Son, Jesus the Christ/Messiah, on the Cross of Calvary.  See John 3.16.  He sees you as being in the process of sanctification into the complete image of Jesus, as the Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 8.29-30 (12.1-2), 2 Corinthians 3.16-18, and Ephesians 4.11-13.  He sees you as glorified (Romans 8.30).  If you are now, then you have been since the time you were justified, as you see below.  What does it mean to be glorified?

You have a glorified future!

  • John 1.12-13 states that you became God’s child when you accepted Jesus as your Savior.  You were given eternal life at that moment, as Jesus said in John 6.47.  You can see this in the Paul’s word picture of Acts 22.13: ‘at that same hour I looked up at [Him].’  Apostle Peter said similarly in Acts 10.34-35.
  • Paul wrote, in Ephesians 2.1-10, that God took you from among the walking dead, gave you life, and seated you with Christ in Heaven, so that (verse 7) you might see ‘the exceeding riches of His grace’!
  • God gave you the gift of the Holy Spirit in advance as His ‘down payment of [your] inheritance’ (Ephesians 1.13-14).  Paul amplifies this in Hebrews 6.4-5 and Romans 5.1-2.
  • Jesus affirmed your glory in His prayer before returning to Heaven, in John 17.22!

You have a glorified present!

  • However, don’t be so Heavenly minded that you are of no earthly good!  For, also read Ephesians 2.10 and connect that to John 17.18 (14.12) and connect that to Romans 5.3-5 (2 Corinthians 10.3-6).  God has plans for you right now, right here!
  • Paul reminded believers of this reality in 1 Corinthians 2.1-16, especially verses 12 and 16.  You have the advantage among men that you have the mind of Christ!  You have His Holy Spirit in you for understanding the things of this world in comparison and contrast to the word of God and for demonstrating the superiority of God among men, as Paul also pointed out in Ephesians 3.8-13.
  • With the mind of Christ, you are to glorify the ‘name of [your] Lord Jesus Christ’ (2 Thessalonians 1.11-12), ‘do [every word and deed] in the name of the Lord Jesus’ (Colossians 3.17), and ‘bear much fruit’ as Jesus’ disciple (John 15.8).
  • Jesus summed up His earthly life in John 16.33 (Acts 10.38).  He stated the reality of life on earth and assured His followers of overcoming satan.  He repeated this to John on Patmos in His letters to the seven churches in Revelation 2 and 3What is the same command He gave to each church?
  • While you live on earth, you have been given promises from God (2 Corinthians 1.20) that satan tries to steal, kill, or destroy (John 10.10).  But, you prevent him with the authority you have to use the name ‘Jesus’ against him!  Notice in Luke 10.17-19 that Jesus said that spirits are ‘subject’ to you!  See Philippians 2.9-11, John 16.24, 33, Revelation 12.11 (the word is Jesus!).

So, God sees you seated with Jesus in Heaven and acting like Him on Earth!

Praise God!!!  Copyright © Maurice L. Painter. 2012. (@Spiritual Warfare)

September 2, 2012 Guards Become Prisoners

Guards Become Prisoners

Sometimes you read about prison guards that violate the law by aiding inmates in their nefarious schemes inside their confinement or that they are caught abusing prisoners for their own benefit.  They were not hired and trained to break the law but end up doing so.  Have Christians who succumb to satan’s temptation to practice evil become like these guards?  In the end, they suffer the same fate…unless mercy is extended because of sorrow and repentance.  Below, you will study what awaits the prisoner and a possible view the Christian life from God’s perspective.

Final Jeopardy

  • After the Millennium reign of Jesus and believers, when satan will be released from the Pit (Revelation 20.1-3; Isaiah 14.12-15), his last rebellion will be crushed by Jesus and satan will be ‘cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are.  And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever’ (Revelation 20.10).
  • Revelation 21.8 and Galatians 5.19-21 lists people consigned there by God at the Great White Throne judgment (Revelation 20.11-14).  They suffer the same never ending burning.  Jesus described this in Matthew 25.41-45 and warned His hearers in Mark 9.42-48.  Also see Revelation 14.9-11.
  • Note in Matthew 25.46 that the punishment is ‘everlasting’ and in Mark 9.48 that the ‘fire is not quenched’! 
  • Dr. Wayne Grudem wrote in Systematic Theology that ‘hell is a place of eternal conscious punishment for the wicked’ (page 1149; my italics).
  • Bill Wiese describes the sights and sounds of the Pit in 23 Minutes in HELL: ‘Some scientists have reported that the core temperature at the center of the earth is approximately twelve thousand degrees (human bodies are completely incinerated in about 15 seconds at 2,000 degrees!).  To endure that for an eternity is unfathomable.  I could see the outlines of people through the flames.  The screams from the condemned souls were deafening and relentless.  There was no safe place, no safe moment, no temporary relief of any kind’ (page 22).  While ascending from Hell, he writes, ‘I could now see more of the enormous pit, which looked to be as much as a mile across.  However, this was just a fraction of hell’s space’ (page 30).
  • Jesus told a story to the Pharisees that emphasized this point.  In Luke 16.24 and 27-28, an arrogant rich man cried out for relief from hell’s everlasting torment but found none.  I suspect those Pharisees are experiencing that just now!
  • Jonathan Edwards was a famous pastor of theChurch ofChrist inNorthampton,England, who delivered his classic sermon, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God atEnfield on July 8, 1742.  He declared, ‘there is nothing that keeps wicked men at any one moment out of Hell but the mere pleasure of God’ (page 5).  ‘Unconverted men walk over the Pit of Hell on a rotten covering, and there are innumerable places in this covering so weak that they won’t bear their weight, and these places are not seen’ (page 9).
  • Bill Wiese describes the tunnel through which he was lifted to safety: ‘The fiendish creatures lined the tunnel walls as well.  They were distinctly wicked.  Their eyes were cauldrons of evil and death.  Everything was filthy, stinking, rotten, and foul.  There was one other distinguishing aspect about these creatures – they all seemed to possess a hatred for mankind.  They were the epitome of evil.  The creatures seemed to be chained, or attached in some fashion, to the cavern walls’ (ibid, page 30).
  • But, the everlasting burning lake of fire was not meant for people!  It is meant for satan and his angels!  See Matthew 25.41Jude 6 states that God ‘has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day…the angels who did not keep their own domain.’ Revelation 12.1-12 states that satan and other demons have been ‘cast to the earth’.  Ezekiel 32 tells how satan deceived nations and that they were destroyed thereby (verses 17-32).

Your job, if you accept it….

  • You who are old enough may remember this phrase from the television program Mission Impossible.
  • God has described your mission possible in Psalm 110.1-2.  Jesus illustrated your mission in the Gospels, as commented on in Acts 10.38 and 1 John 3.8b.  Then, He commanded you to do the same, in John 17.18 and gave you His authority over satan and his demons (Luke 10.19).
  • In one sense, Jesus was a prison guard and illustrated your role to you.  When you were saved, you were deputized to put satan’s demons in prison, though they try to flee from your presence (see James 4.7).
  • You were destined for dominion, as is stated in Genesis 1.28.  Jesus illustrated that you are to subjugate satan and his deceiving demons.  Paul told you how in Philippians 2.9-11.

Book ‘em….

  • A current television program typically has one detective telling his partner this when they catch the crook
  • Jesus illustrated the Bible version of this when He healed the two demon-possessed men in the country of the Gergesense, in Matthew 8.28-34.  The demons begged Jesus to send them into a herd of pigs which they promptly drowned in theSea of Galilee.
  • Just break their abuse of people…who are made in God’s image.  This is the ultimate reason satan wants to abuse you anyway!  He is trying to get back at God.
  • So, turn the tables and speak ‘Jesus’ to them to overcome them!  Revelation 12.11.
  • You won’t have to go too far to find a demon to book.  Start with the one(s) troubling you now!

Praise God!!!  Copyright © by Maurice L. Painter, 2012