Tuesday, 9/14/21 – Pressing on… Aborted, Adopted, Adapted…

Aborted, Adopted, Adapted…

There is a passage in an Old Testament prophetic portrayal of God ransoming His people which sounds very much like the Lord Almighty coming upon an aborted fetus,

On the day you were born your cord was not cut, nor were you washed with water to make you clean, nor were you rubbed with salt or wrapped in cloths. No one looked on you with pity or had compassion enough to do any of these things for you. Rather, you were thrown out into the open field, for on the day you were born you were despised. Then I passed by and saw you kicking about in your blood, and as you lay there in your blood I said to you, ‘Live!’” (Ezek. 16:4-6)

Garbage! Birth discharge! Worth no man’s attention but to be tossed aside, made fodder for scavengers. But God sees hope in this bloody issue! His creative voice and life-giving breath speaks to it and command “Live!” And what happens? “Paul says it in Romans: “the Spirit you received brought about your adoption… by Him we cry, “Abba, Father.” (Rom. 8:15). He says it again in Galatians: “God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” …you are His child” (Gal. 4:6,7). You cry out, “Daddy!”

The above Ezekiel passage continues to describe God growing and nurturing this child, washing and perfuming her, clothing and jeweling her to a creature of great beauty!

From aborting to adopting – this is God’s plan for our redemption. But that is not all! Not only does God seek to restore us to wholeness, but He desires fellowship with us. And not only does He desire fellowship with us, but He also desires to make us like Himself. He desires not only to adopt us, but to adapt us – to fit us for Heaven — to make us holy as He is Holy, for we must be holy to be in His Presence (see Heb. 12:14).

This is the miracle In which John marvels when he writes, “…now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” (1 John 3:2).

Aborted, Adopted, Adapted!

The Law was just a step along this way. God has much bigger plans in mind.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jer. 29:11).

What an amazing, marvelous and gracious God!

More tomorrow…

To hear this past Sunday’s message, go to the Facebook page of Lincoln Baptist Church, or link to the livestream from the church website.

Tuesday, 5/25/21 – Pressing on… He didn’t actually mean “holy” – did He?

He didn’t actually mean “holy” – did He?

“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.

2 Pet. 1:3

Wait, Whaat? What did that verse at the end of yesterday’s blog just say? Did Peter say it is possible for a believer to actually achieve personal holiness in this life??? Can one truly walk about in this filthy fallen world yet remain unsullied… unsoiled? I know Jesus did, but… well,, He’s Jesus! I know He charged us to, “Be holy, for I am holy,” (Lev. 19:2; 20:7, 26; 21:8; Exod. 19:6; 1 Pet. 1:16; 1 Thess. 4:7) But surely He didn’t actually mean “holy” – did He?

Pastor Andrew’s text on Sunday was this:

“14 Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? 15 What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? Or what does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? 16 What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.’ [Lev. 26:12; Jer. 32:38; Ezek. 37:27] 17 Therefore, ‘Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.’ [Isa. 52:11; Ezek. 20:34,41] (2 Cor. 6:14-17).

The first three verses underscore our urgent need to walk in holiness while the citations from the Law and Prophets reveal how. Peter says the means to personal purity come to us “through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” Paul refers to the scriptures and shows the means to holiness is God Himself “living with us” and “walking among us,” and in our obedience to Him as Lord and God. Because God is with us, even within us, we receive of His enabling Holy Spirit. Peter explains that now, through Christ, we come to this relationship with Him “through our knowledge of him who called us.”

Because of the Spirit of Christ living within the believer he/she now has a CHOICE at every crossroad: righteousness or wickedness, Christ or Belial, God or idols? We have a choice, to serve Christ, or serve self, to “Come apart” from the ways of this world, or be absorbed into them?

Faith and belief in Christ, acknowledging and turning from sin, daily shunning evil and embracing spiritual disciplines – by these we can “Come out” and “be separate.” This, daily, is what it means to live a godly life!

More tomorrow…

To hear Pastor Andrew’s Sunday message, go to the Facebook page of Lincoln Baptist Church, or link to the livestream from the church website.