Jesus heals rejection

What could a 4,000 year-old Law, given to a group of 2 million homeless former slaves, have anything to do with our living our life today?  After God had miraculously shown his power over the fake gods of Egypt He led His people out of slavery, through the Red Sea, to His Mountain.  There God gave Moses His commands so that evil would be restrained and love would be encouraged.  One of those commands was to Honor Parents.  This meant that adult children were to take care of the needs of their parents, especially in their parents’ old age when they are more dependent.  Two thousand years later, when God had not sent a prophet in 500 years, the religious leaders of Jesus time didn’t want to follow God’s command.  They wanted to keep their money.  They made up their own rule that sounded godly, but was designed to get around God’s command of love.  The Pharisees taught that if a man said that what he owned was devoted to God he didn’t have to help his old, struggling parents with it.  Then, when he wanted to use it for himself, he said it was not devoted to God.  Jesus was disgusted with these men and their uncaring hypocrisy.  Especially because they claimed to represent God and gave their followers the impression that God was like them.
Jesus said to the people that they needed to respect their leaders, but do not be like them.  God said in the Bible about these Pharisees hundreds of years ahead of time, “These people honor me with their lips but their hearts are far from me.”  The Pharisees were very concerned with looking right, but cared little about their own real evil thoughts and motives.
What does this have to do with us today, 2,000 to 4,000 years later?  Do you know anyone that claims to know Jesus, and tries to “look” right but doesn’t accept you, thinks they are better than you?  That is a hard place to be.  Maybe you have attitudes and actions that the Bible says are wrong.  And the “so-called-Jesus-followers” look down on you because of it.  This should never be.  Jesus accepts you.  Jesus died for you.  Jesus spent most of his time with those whom the religious leaders of his day rejected.  It was the “sinners” who first came to accept Jesus not the religious.  
So if Jesus freely accepts us how does he feel about our attitudes and actions the Bible says are wrong?  Jesus calls us to trust him to help us turn away from sin.  You may feel that sin has taken you prisoner with no way out.  This is a lie of satan.  Or, you may feel you have no sin.  This is just as much a lie of satan.  Jesus knows we can’t free ourselves from satan’s power in our own strength.  If we could we would have a long time ago.  No, he asks us to turn away from sin by his power.  And his power is limitless.  Ask Jesus to come into your life, free you from sin, and give you a brand new life, a life truly built on love and forgiveness.  He answers that prayer every time.

Oh, and what about the people that rejected you?  Now you can offer Jesus to them.

Know the Christmas Child

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, 
and the government will be on his shoulders. 
And he will be called 
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, 
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” 
(Isaiah 9:6, NIV). 

Jesus came to earth as a baby. And he was a baby much like you and me. He laughed, he cried, he learned to walk. He learned to love… He learned to love us and he especially learned to love his heavenly Father.

Because Jesus was man he could experience all our temptations.  Because he was God and never sinned he could die for each one of us, so that we could live forever in heaven with him.  You can personally know Jesus and the true meaning of Christmas… by talking to him through prayer, by listening to him through reading the Bible, and by loving him through actively doing what he says.  He and his Father will make their home within you and you will know “Emmanuel – God with us” who is the true meaning of Christmas.

To learn more about knowing the Christ of Christmas read the Bible (Matthew 1:23, John 3:1-21, 14:15, 23, 31; Hebrews 4:14-16), talk to a friend who knows Jesus, visit a Church that teaches that Jesus is God.

Help is on the way

Rather than stay well away from sin, sometimes we dance as close to the edge as we can without going over. However, before we know it, we find ourselves going over the edge anyway. The climb back is difficult and it sure helps to have someone anchored to the top to come down and help lift us out.

“Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual 
should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you may be tempted. 
Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” 
(Galatians 6:1-2, NIV).

If you know Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, and are controlled by His Spirit, and you are following Him as best you can, you can be a lifeline to someone who has fallen. First, be careful to resist the temptation to feel superior or to pass judgement.  Second, remember that at times LOVE can be spelled LISTEN.  Usually sin is an attempt to get God-given needs met without God.  You need to respond with reality and compassion (truth and mercy) just as Jesus did.  Remember the paralyzed man lowered through the roof, whose friends had faith but he didn’t, Jesus healed him anyway.  Remember the woman caught in the act of adultery. Jesus said, “Does no one condemn you?  Neither do I condemn you.  Go and sin no more.”  Finally, restore that person to fellowship with God and fellow believers with the same care and gentleness of a doctor restoring a broken bone.  You can literally be Jesus to that person, allowing Christ to restore one of His own back to Himself.

“My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth 
and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner 
from the error of his way will save him from death and cover a multitude of sins” 
(James 5:19-20, NIV).

To learn more about God, read the Bible (Galatians 6:1-10, Ecclesiastes 4:9-12), talk to a friend who knows Jesus, visit a Church that teaches that Jesus is God.