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Daily Bread - April 26, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 26 April 2017 09:21
1 John 3:1 - Look at what amazing love the Father has given to us that we
should be called the children of God. The world does not know us because it
did not know Him.

Look at how much love, and what amazing love, the Father has given to us!
The Lord has lavished His love upon us, not just by redeeming us, but
bringing us into sonship. The sonship we have received and function in by
the Holy Spirit has made us heirs of God and co-inheritors with Jesus
Christ (Romans 8:14-17; Galatians 4:6-7)!

One of the primary themes of the First Epistle of John is fellowship.
Within the definition of fellowship with God is the absence of fellowship
with the world and its darkness. The proof that we know God and are His
people is shown by us having no fellowship with the world. Even as Jesus
said concerning those who worked iniquity, "depart from me, I never knew
you" (Matthew 7:23). We are not to know the world; and in turn, they do not
know us. There is to be no fellowship with the unfruitful works of
darkness, which is equivalent to fellowship with the world (Ephesians
5:11). We recognize that all that is in the world is not of the Father (1
John 2:16-17). Everything that is of the world is oppose to God, and
friendship with it is an act of hostility against God (James 4:4). Because
we are born of God, the world cannot relate to us or have any real
connection to us because we are of another Spirit and kind (2 Corinthians
6:14-18).
 
Daily Bread - April 25, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 25 April 2017 07:19
1 John 3:1 - Look at what amazing love the Father has given to us that we
should be called the children of God. The world does not know us because it
did not know Him.

It is one thing when men call themselves the sons of God; it is altogether
a different thing to be called a son of God by God Himself. Our
relationship with God cannot be better expressed than that which was spoken
by Jesus when He said, "But go to my brethren, and say to them: 'I ascend
to my Father and your Father, and to my God and your God'" (John 20:17).
Although the word for 'children' (tekna) is used here instead of 'sons'
(uios) as in Galatians 4:6, the same meaning is implied. Although Jesus
Christ is the eternal God, He became the only begotten Son of God, and
without Him no man or woman can become a child of God. Through Jesus, the
Spirit of God comes upon us and changes us, and we become begotten of God,
and are made family members to Christ Jesus (Romans 8:29; Hebrews 2:12-14).
Whether we are male or female, we find our place in God through Christ
Jesus, the Son of God.

God has made us members of His family (Ephesians 3:14-15). We are not
children of God because we were born into the world; but we are children of
God because we were born into the Kingdom of God by the Holy Spirit. It is
essential to the New Testament doctrine and faith in Christ Jesus that we
know we have been born of God (John 3:5-8; 1 John 2:29, 3:9, 4:7, 5:1, 4,
18; 1 Peter 1:3, 23). More than anything else, God has purposed that we
take on the identity of His Son - and that of His family (Ephesians 3:15; 2
Corinthians 6:18). As the children of God, we are not only privileged to be
heirs and co-inheritors with Jesus Christ, but also empowered to be
conformed to His image, Who is the first born among many brethren (Romans
8:17; 29, John 1:12).
 
Daily Bread - April 24, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Monday, 24 April 2017 08:53
1 John 2:29 - If you know that He is righteous, you also know that everyone
that does righteousness is begotten of Him.

The message of walking in the light as He is in the light is reiterated as
righteousness. The test of being begotten of God is doing righteousness on
the scale of His righteousness. We are the people of God that are created
in righteousness and true holiness (Ephesians 4:24), as well as those who
have been given the righteousness of God (Romans 3:22), and who are made
the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21). Therefore, as the test of
those who truly had fellowship with God was witnessed by walking in the
light as He is in the light, so also walking in righteousness just as He
walked in righteousness is proof. If we know God, we are going to do
righteousness, which will be repeated and expounded upon in the verses
following in Chapter 3 - "let no one deceive you, he that does
righteousness is righteous, even as He is righteous" (1 John 3:7).
 
Daily Bread - April 22, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 22 April 2017 10:04
John 5:14 - After this Jesus found him in the temple, and he said to him,
See now! You have become well; sin no more, so that a worse thing does not
come upon you.

Jesus told two people, in no uncertain terms, that they were to "sin no
more." The first person that He said this to was this crippled man who He
had healed. The second person Jesus told to "sin no more" was the woman
taken in the act of adultery (John 8:11). Jesus was so insistent about sin
being totally removed that He said, "If your right eye causes you to sin,
tear it out and throw it away; for it is better for you to lose one of your
members, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell." (Matthew 5:29).
Although the man in this passage of scripture had been a paralytic for 38
years, a far worse thing could happen to him if he allowed sin to continue
in his life. More than likely, Jesus was referring to hell rather than just
another sickness. Jesus was as much interested in this man's soul as He was
in his physical body; and if this man was going to make the Kingdom of God,
then sin would have to come to an end.

The arms of the Lord Jesus were wide open to forgive the woman who was
taken in the act of adultery, but He demanded that she "sin no more." Under
the law, the woman should have been stoned so that sin could be crushed out
of the heart of Israel (Leviticus 20:10). However, Jesus would crush sin
out of her heart, and everyone else who would receive, through His death
burial and resurrection. He, through His death, destroyed the power of the
devil, so that sin should no longer reign over the heart of man (Hebrews
2:14; Romans 6:11-13; 2 Timothy 1:10). He made provision for anyone who
would call upon his Name to have their lives transformed by the Holy
Spirit. Through the Name of Jesus and the power of His blood, we are
transformed from darkness to light, from death to life, and from sin to
righteousness (Colossians 1:12-14; 2 Timothy 1:10; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1
Peter 2:24; Romans 6).

One of the great tragedies among many ministries today is that they have
embraced sin as a continuous and inevitable part of their lives. They have
left off the good fight of faith and surrendered to the influence of sin,
supposedly equipping their people to better deal with their failure.
Unfortunately, what these ministries do not understand is that the wages of
sin is death (Romans 6:23). They fail to realize that Jesus came and set us
free from sin so that we could live unto righteousness (1 Peter 2:24; 2
Corinthians 5:17-21; Romans 6:13, 18). They have adopted a similar belief
to those who opposed Paul when he wrote, "Shall we continue in sin that
grace might abound? By no means! How can we who are dead (separated) to sin
live any longer in it?" (Romans 6:1-2, 15-16). Paul said, "All who have
sinned without the law will perish without the law; and all who have sinned
under the law will be judged by the law," which also demanded death (Romans
2:12). Paul was so radical against sin that he said if anyone sins rebuke
them in front of the whole church so that everyone will fear (1 Timothy
5:20). Peter makes the argument that if God did not spare the angels who
sinned, nor the ancient cities in the days of Noah and who also overthrew
Sodom and Gomorrah, what do you think will happen to sinners today who have
an insatiable desire for sin? In conclusion, Peter expresses how God feels
about sin when he says they are, "accursed children" (2 Peter 2:4-6, 14).
 
Daily Bread - April 21, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 21 April 2017 09:30
1 John 2:1 - My little children, I write these things to you so that you do
not sin. But if anyone sins, we have a Paraclete at the Father's side,
Jesus Christ the righteous.

The words used for sin are found 267 times (hamartia-173; hamartema- 4;
hamartano-43; hamartolos-47) in the New Testament. In not one single
instance does God describe sin as something that belongs in the lives of
His people. Rather, God has condemned sin and demands that it have no place
in the lives of His people. Could there be an example of a more damning
heresy and deception in the church than to teach people that God excuses
sin?

The good news, that should cause every heart to rejoice, is that
righteousness has now come to everyone through Christ Jesus! As sin came
into everyone's heart through Adam's transgression, righteousness has now
been given through Jesus Christ (Romans 5:12, 17). Now, after being filled
with the life and goodness of God, if we sin, God will forgive us if we
confess our sins (1 John 1:9, 2:1). Once again, if sin were something that
God's people were to accept as an everyday expectation of God's will, then
there would have been an excellent opportunity to suggest such a doctrine
in 1 John 2:1. Instead of saying, "If you sin", John would have said, "When
you sin." Certainly, there was no one more radical against sin in the life
of the believer than John (1 John 1, 3:4-9, 5:18).

Could there be any greater shame placed upon our lives than to be a part of
robbing others of godly sorrow and stealing from them the knowledge of God
(2 Corinthians 7:10; 1 Corinthians 15:34; 2 Corinthians 10:5)? What a great
injustice we would have done to others if we taught them that they have no
power or dominion over sin -that the deceitfulness of sin is somehow
stronger, or more to be desired, than the life that is in Christ Jesus. We
would be responsible for their inability to resist the devil, and would be
to blame for having set them up to develop a hard heart against the
convictions of the Holy Spirit. The judgment upon those who would
participate in such wickedness will indeed be great. It would have been
better to have never been born than to cause one of God's little children
to be defenseless against a raging enemy like Satan.

The doctrine of sin is not an insignificant doctrinal issue, but the focus
of why Jesus died! The subject of the elimination of sin is a central
concern in the New Testament. Please listen, if we willingly persist in sin
after having received the knowledge of the truth there remains no more
sacrifice for sin, but rather a fearful prospect of judgment and a fury of
fire that will consume the adversaries (Hebrews 10:26-27).
 
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