Thursday, August 15, 2013

We Are Only Sojuourners.

1 Peter 1, New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls. 10 As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, 11 seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. 12 It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves, but you, in these things which now have been announced to you through those who preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things into which angels long to look.
13 Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, 15 but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; 16 because it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” 17 If you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay on earth; 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, 19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ. 20 For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you 21 who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God. 22 Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, 23 for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God. 24 For, All flesh is like grass,
And all its glory like the flower of grassThe grass withers, And the flower falls off25 But the word of the Lord endures forever.”
And this is the word which was preached to you. 
My Comments: When I was a young girl and thought I was going to Heaven because I went to church, had been Baptized as a baby and believed in God, and even believed in God as One, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I thought I just had to go to Communion, obey my parents and stay within the laws of the land. I didn't think about the words of God. I listened to the worldly wisdom. Not God's wisdom.
Now, I know there is more expected of me as the Child of God. "You shall be Holy as I am Holy." Yet I keep hearing from many that because of our sin natures, it is impossible to be Holy. It does not say be perfect as I am perfect, it says Holy as I am Holy.
When we uphold our Abba's honor by the way we live our lives, interact with others, are diligent at our jobs, to name a few, then we are Holy. The world knows this in a way. We see the values in the laws of the land, yet we see the morality of people showing their desire to raise "themselves up as god's"and not wanting to listen to the word of God the Father, in the way the world behaves.
Another thing that happens to many who come to Christ, is many often think there will be an easy road for them because they are the Children of God. This is far from true. One thing we can count on is there will be trials and tribulations and often we will be called upon to go through very hard times. All have trials and things that happen to them and in their lives yet those who are Children of God are first assured He will be there with them in the midst of those situations and hurtful times and second when we die here we are immediately with Jesus in Heaven. Those who are not Children of God do not have those assurances.
In China, India, Africa as in many other countries of the world, there are Christians who are persecuted, imprisoned and even murdered in the name of Christ. Many do not even have a Bible and often just a piece of a Bible yet they have faith that moves mountains. They know that here in this world which is not our home, that we will encounter hardships, loss, and pain even to death yet as with the first followers of the Way, they know none of it matters. They also know, the time coming to the end is very short and when they leave this world they will be in their true home.
We are only sojourners in this world. All of us who are Children of God do not count this as our home. We are aliens in this world and as such we are ambassadors of the One True God of Heaven. Because of that we have an obligation to live our lives to bring glory and praise to our God. Jesus the Son of God, saved us and when He did we no longer were citizens of this world, but we became aliens here and citizens of Heaven and one day with Christ Jesus, we will reign with Him and the other saints on the New Earth. So as the Apostle Paul encourages us we must run the race well.
Abba Father, You never promised us an easy life here in this world yet we ask for Your strength, wisdom, and guidance as we go through this world. Help us to live our lives to bring You glory and praise in all we do, say and think. You did promise You would go through the fire with us and be there for us, not to stop the pain but to share it as we share everything with You.Thank You Abba for Your love, for accepting us as Your Children when we turn to You, confess our sin and accept the free gift of salvation offered by Your Son, Jesus the Christ.

Lord Jesus, You ask us to take up our Cross and follow You. Help us to do so in a way that bring others to see You in us. thank You, for making us Yours and interceding with the Father for us. When temptation comes help us to know Scripture as well as You, Lord, so we too will be able to avoid the traps of the Evil one, and bring glory to Your Holy Name.

Holy Spirit, teach us in the Word so when we are asked we can give a full account of what we believe and why. When we are tested, as Jesus was tested in the wilderness, may we not be found wanting but remain strong and always praising God the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last the Alpha and the Omega the I AM.

 In the name of Jesus our Lord and Savior in union with the Holy Spirit I pray,  Amen.


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