The angel said to me, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.” Luke 1:30-33
The angel said to me, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.”Luke 1:30-33
Let’s take just a moment to look beyond the controversy over when the Lord came and focus on why He came. I think Isaiah gave us the best explanation the Bible offers. What follows is my adaptation of Isaiah 53.
For unto us a child is born, unto 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)
Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14)
In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the Gentiles, by the way of the sea, along the Jordan. The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. (Isaiah 9:1-2)
As we begin another Christmas season, let’s review exactly what the Lord’s arrival on Earth has done for us. It’ll help us remember the reason for the season and rekindle our joy in the midst of all the hustle and bustle.
Every year at Thanksgiving I’m reminded of the holiday’s origin, the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles. It was the crowning event in Israel’s cycle of fall feasts that also included Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. It was a celebration of the harvest, of God’s mercy in forgiving their sins for another year, and a remembrance of the time when He lived among them in the wilderness, setting them apart as His people.
Because we’re adults, we think we’re pretty responsible. We have ourselves convinced that by and large we do the “right thing.” But sub-consciously we’re still governed by something called the “want to vs. have to” principle. Here’s what that means.
Recently I’ve been asked about witnessing to “unsaved believers” as one writer called them. I usually refer to them as Christians-in-name-only. They call themselves Christians and do some things that make them appear to be Christians. They go to Church, make regular contributions, sign up for volunteer service projects, even teach Sunday School, but they’re not born again. Being born again means you know you’re a sinner in need of a savior. You believe Jesus died for all your sins and have asked Him to be your Savior. According to Jesus, people who are not born again will be denied entrance into the Kingdom (John 3:3) no matter how “good” they’ve been on Earth.
Q. I heard from somebody a while back that “Satan is a created being and can only be at one place at one time, like ourselves. Is it possible for Satan to actually “indwell” in a person? Because of my faith in Jesus, I know that He is with us and indwells in us always, but I thought that He and the Holy Spirit were the only ones capable of “indwelling” anybody.
Q. Heb. 4:15 Says that Jesus was tempted in all ways. Was this the same temptation we experience? If I understand correctly He had no sin nature as we do, so how was it like our temptation? I’m not being contrary I just want to understand.
Q. I have just read in one of your answers that we are not expected to understand the Trinity, but just to believe it. Could you tell me where in the bible I can find the requirement to believe in the Trinity?
Q. What about a person who once believed in Christ fervently, but now has turned away from Him completely? Where it is no longer just a question of broken fellowship because of some present pet sin or weakness, but the person now believes Christianity is all a “sham”, and that they had been previously deluded? (I know such a person) Would not Heb 6 apply here? Does God have responsibility to save such a person who now wants no part of Him, and actively rails against Him? What about the IF of Col 1:23 “IF ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel…” That seems to indicate a condition to me…a condition that one continue in the faith…that is CONTINUE to BELIEVE…what if one no longer continues to believe in Christ?
Q. I have a friend who has begun the study of Revelation with her husband and she asked if I had any material to help them understand it better. I printed out your complete study on the book. It’s the best that I have read.
As a result of my friends interest it has prompted me to “re-study” it and I do have a question concerning Chapter 17 where the woman on the beast is revealed, it says the beast was scarlet. What is the implication of it being this color?
Q. I have always been taught that God gives us freedom of choice because He wants us to be free to love Him or not love Him by choice. Therefore we are free to either sin or not sin. If that is true, then why can’t I choose NOT to have freedom of choice? I WANT to be a robot, loving God and not sinning continuously. I constantly sin…constantly. I am beset by a sinful addiction.
I pray to God, through Jesus, to keep the opportunity for sin away from me. I do not place myself in situations where I can sin, but the thoughts of my sin barage me constantly, 24 hours a day and seven days a week. This week some sins that I committed 25 years ago came back to haunt me. I confessed these sins to Jesus and repented many years ago but, even though He forgave me, He let me suffer punishment now. I understand that just because He forgave me didn’t mean that I would escape punishment. These were some very serious sins.
What I would like to know is that long before I committed these sins I would have gladly given up my freedom of choice and would like to have been an “android for Christ” (if such a thing would have been possible). You seem to be a very spiritually blessed person so maybe you could answer this for me.
Q. I am going to try and articulate my question. First let me say, that I understand I am a sinner, have a sin nature and need a redeemer. I don’t DESERVE anything, but thru grace and faith and the work of Jeshua on the cross I am saved.
Here goes my analytical mind: I didn’t chose to be born. Since I didn’t chose to be born I didn’t chose to be a sinner. I have an invisible (to me) enemy that wants to see me in hell. I also didn’t chose my body/mind/ brokenness. Some I’ve known seem to be a lot more hard headed than me, etc. Which seems to lead them into the trap of not wanting/believing they need a savior. So they go to hell. That seems like a HUGE penalty for something one didn’t chose in the first place.
When I think about this it makes me very fearful that I could have missed it. But for the grace of God go I. I can almost hear your answer, the one I could come up with. My problem with that is it is hard for me to believe that everyone regardless of their issues got/gets at least one chance. My mind replies: what if? Maybe the answer is: It just is.
Q. Do you believe there could have been a pre-Adamite civilization and if you don’t would you say why false teachers cling to this? I found some sites that give compelling reasons for its existence, but I have also found sites that come down hard on this teaching. Could you please share your thoughts?