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”who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,“ 2 Timothy‬ ‭1‬:‭9‬ ‭KJV‬‬. One of the least understood of the truths of God’s Word is, God’s Grace. Many today have become like those Jude wrote about. They try to turn God’s grace into a license to sin. They teach that because we are under grace, sin doesn’t matter, or it matters very little. Others define it only as ‘God’s unmerited favor’. But when we open our hearts to the truth of God’s grace it will set us free from so many spiritual hindrances. One aspect of this great truth reminds us that His grace is sufficient for us no matter what we face or go through. Imagine how this would help and encourage souls if they would take hold of this truth. No matter how rough our circumstances may be, God’s grace is enough! His grace will help us to overcome every trial and every temptation. Because of the sufficiency of His grace, we do not have to give in to sin. We don’t have to be overcome by the world, the flesh or the devil. All because of the wondrous truth of God’s grace!


”and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.“ John‬ ‭8‬:‭32‬ ‭KJV‬‬. One of the problems when we read these words of Jesus is that we tend to limit them. We fail to see how far reaching they are into every area of our lives. Usually, we think of how He saves us and frees us from the guilt and eternal punishment of sin, and we are thankful. But the freedom Jesus speaks of here goes so much further than we imagine. And it is all based on knowing the truth as it is in Jesus Christ. For instance, many believers struggle at times because of fear and worry. But how different it is when we know the truth that Jesus holds all of our tomorrows in His hands and He promises to work all things for good for those who love him. Or when we grasp the truth that no weapon formed against us will prosper because He is our Shield and Protector. In this unstable world so filled with uncertainty about the future, what a difference it makes when we rest our souls on the truth of Who Jesus is and what He promises to do. Let us anchor our souls on the truth that He is our Almighty and Sovereign God Who is weaving all of the diverse threads of our lives into a beautiful tapestry that will bring glory and honor to Him. Only as we come to know in personal experience the truth as it is in Jesus can our souls be free.


“(You) who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Peter‬ ‭1:5‬ ‭KJV‬‬. Almost everyone is seeking some type of security in this life. And we know that any security we may find in a government or business has to do with its power to keep its place in society. For that reason, we tend to look for institutions that have been around for awhile and have remained steady. But think of what Peter is saying in these words. “We are kept by the power OF GOD!” The same power that created this universe and spoke the stars into existence is the power that is keeping us, when our faith is anchored in Him! The power that has been active in all of this world’s history, keeping, protecting and providing for His people, is the power that is keeping us each day. God’s power has remained steadfast in every storm, stood against every enemy attack, and now holds us each moment of our lives. So when we feel threatened or attacked by forces of evil, and we wonder how we will be able to make it, let us rest in this wonderful truth: ‘I am kept by the power of God’.


”Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are My friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.”John‬ ‭15‬:‭13‬-‭14‬ ‭KJV‬‬. Every believer knows that Jesus laid down His life for us in His great atoning work upon the cross. In this sacrifice He proved His amazing love for us. Thank God, He is the Friend of sinners. He is the Friend Who sticks closer than a brother. We rejoice in the words of the song, “There is not a Friend like Jesus, patient, tender, kind and true”. But do we also think about being His friend? Do we understand that He wants us to live so that we can be His friends? He makes it very clear in this passage that to be His friends we must do the things He tells us to do. Often this will mean laying down our life for Him because He is our dearest friend. But seldom is this about laying down our life in physical death as many believe. To lay our life down for our Friend means when the desires we have are contrary to His will, we lay down our desires. When our flesh wants to go our own way, we lay down our life so we can go His way. Many in religion think this is unnecessary. But this is what a life of love is about. It is proving our love to Jesus, our dearest Friend, by following the things He says.


”As the Father hath loved Me, so have I loved you: continue ye in My love.“ John‬ ‭15‬:‭9‬ ‭KJV‬. When Jesus spoke these words He was telling us that He loves us exactly as the Father loves us. And He proved His great love for us by laying His life down for our sins upon Calvary’s cross. In this great act of sacrificial love, He made a way for us to be delivered from sin and become children of God, who could begin to live a life of love. But when He calls us to “continue in My love”, He is reminding us that it is possible that we will not continue. That means we can depart from the life of love. This is what Jesus told the church at Ephesus they were guilty of. ”… I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.” (Revelation‬ ‭2‬:‭4‬). Of course He told them next they should repent from that sinful departure. Too often today, religious leaders confuse this issue by telling people they cannot do anything to cause Jesus to quit loving them. But the issue of continuing in His love is about our love to Him. Jesus defines it clearly in John 15:10, when He says, “If you keep My commandments you will continue in My love”. This is not difficult to understand. But it is not what shallow religious people want to hear. May God help us to love Him enough to obey Him so we can continue in His love.


”In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.“ Genesis‬ ‭1‬:‭1‬ ‭KJV‬‬. God is love. In the beginning He created this world to be a place where His divine love could be demonstrated and reflected in His creation. He made man in His own image so that He could enjoy a loving relationship with him. And at first, this world was a place of perfect love. But because of sin, man has departed from the love God created us for. In reality, all sin is a departure from divine love. And yet, in spite of our sinful departure, our loving God has made a way for us, through His Son Jesus Christ, to be restored to a life of love. Thank God, in Christ we can be changed from the unloving sinners we were into children of God filled with God’s love. There is no more important thing for all of us to do than love the Lord with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength. In this modern religious world, where so much emphasis is placed on a superficial belief that does little to change the life, we need to get back to the basic message of what God created us for. We were created to glorify Him as we live a life of love. When we love God we will strive please Him, obey His commands and love others as He has loved us. By God’s grace, let us place love in the beginning of our priorities, where it should always be. Let us love God first.


”Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God…” 1 John‬ ‭3‬:‭1‬ ‭KJV‬‬. Do we ever take time to consider the love our Heavenly Father has for us? This is not to be a mere exercise in theology to enlighten our minds, but it is a necessity for a strong and healthy Christian life. Everything about our lives as children of God is based on God’s love. There is no more important truth we can ever consider than God’s love. It was God’s love that made a way for our salvation. It was His love that sought after us in our life of sin and drew us to Himself. It is His love that has lifted us up every time we have fallen. But what kind of love is it that makes us His children? His love for us is the perfect love of a perfect and holy Heavenly Father. Our minds cannot fully comprehend it. And yet our hearts can experience the personal reality of His love. Many years ago the songwriter was inspired to write of the sacrifice of Christ upon Calvary’s cross. The chorus says: “Oh the love that drew salvation’s plan, oh the grace that brought it down to man.” Let us be thankful and rejoice in God’s amazing love! It is a love that cannot ever fail. God’s love can never be defeated. It is a love that far surpasses any other love in this world. To know how God loves us is to be secure in the midst of an unstable and chaotic world. To know the power of His love is to know that no weapon formed against us can prosper. To experience His love in our souls is to know the greatest blessing possible to man.


“Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.” John‬ ‭16:20‬ ‭KJV‬‬. Jesus spoke these words to His disciples referring to the sorrow they would feel at His death and then their joy when He arose from the grave. But for God’s children, this spiritual principle is abiding! As we go through difficult things, including persecution, we will have times of sorrow. We feel sorrow at the loss of loved ones. We worry about the loss of our freedoms and way of life. And be sure, this ungodly world will rejoice as sin and ungodliness abounds. We also weep over the sad condition of our world and the lost souls around us. But let us remember, the time is coming when all of our sorrow will be turned to joy! “Weeping may last for the night, but joy comes in the morning” Psalm 30:5. On one level this is true of individual circumstances in our lives. The dark nights do not last forever. But on a much broader level, it is true about the Christian’s entire journey through this world of woe. One day, all of the sorrow will be over and we will enter in to the eternal joys of the Lord! Hallelujah! And on that day, the world’s rejoicing will come to an end. By God’s grace, may we choose to be among those who are rejoicing for all eternity.


”(God) Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that He will yet deliver us;“ 2 Corinthians‬ ‭1‬:‭10‬ ‭KJV‬‬. Not only was this verse the Apostle Paul’s personal testimony and belief, but it is every true Christian’s as well. All who trust Christ have been delivered from that spiritual condition of being dead in sin. That was the deliverance that brought us into personal relationship with Christ. But deliverance is not simply a past event, it is an everyday experience. In many ways that we do not always see or understand, our Lord is delivering us moment by moment. Sometimes it is a temptation coming against us and we look to Jesus. And so faithfully He delivers us. Other times there are traps of the enemy set before us that we cannot see, but the Lord delivers us from them all. And thank God we have this blessed promise, that whatever comes against us in the future, He will deliver! We don’t have to fear that something will happen that our God is not prepared for. We don’t have to worry that His love will weaken or His mercy fail. He will be the same Mighty Deliverer tomorrow that He has been in days gone by. By God’s grace, let us trust Him to deliver.


”Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.”Galatians‬ ‭5‬:‭1‬ ‭KJV‬‬. One of the mistakes many believers make about spiritual bondage is thinking that it only happens to unsaved people. We forget that after Israel had been delivered from the bondage of Egypt, they still needed deliverance many times after that. Often in their history they would be confronted by enemies and need deliverance. Other times they would fall into idolatry and become spiritually bound, desperately needing God’s deliverance. And how often today believers allow ‘little things’ to slip into their lives and they soon become bound. They allow some attitude to creep in and soon they are bound with a wrong attitude. They open their minds to ungodly things and they become bound by wicked thoughts. Many have started criticizing and judging others and become bound by a judgmental spirit. But whatever the bondage may be, we need to be humble and honest enough to recognize it for what it is. Too often we see only part of our problem and imagine that we will fix it ourselves. But may God help us to know, our only hope of deliverance is in Jesus Christ! If we are going to ‘stand in the liberty of Christ’ we must be careful not to become entangled in bondage. By God’s grace, let us walk in the light and avoid the traps our enemy sets before us.