Archive for the ‘Christian Life’ Category

You might think that she would have lived her life as a bitter woman because a “Doctor” gave here the wrong medication which caused her to go blind at a very young age (six weeks old). But instead, with the help of her godly grandmother, who taught her about God and His Word, she allowed the Lord to use her “handicap” to bless the lives of countless others through the six thousand Gospel songs she wrote. Included in the list were these: Blessed Assurance, Jesus Is Mine,” “Pass Me Not, O Gentle Saviour,” and “Rescue The Perishing.”

“Rescue The Perishing” was written after she had met a young, blue collar worker at one of her speaking engagements. During her talk, she felt compelled to ask, “If there is a dear boy here tonight who has perchance wandered away from his mother’s home and his mother’s teaching, please come at the end of the service and talk to me.”

When the meeting was over, a young man (18 years old) approached her. “Did you mean me?” he asked. “I promised my mother that I would meet her in heaven, but the way I have been living, I don’t think that will be possible now.” This blind lady then had the joy of leading that young man to Christ. Upon returning to her room that night, all she could think about was the theme “Rescue The Perishing.” (See Jude 1:22, 23). So she wrote the words to the song we often sing in church. [1]

Rescue the perishing.” God the Father loved the people of this world who had sinned (acted lawlessly) against Him (John 3:16; See 1 John 3:4). He wanted to rescue us so that we wouldn’t have to spend eternity in the lake of fire with the devil and his angels/demons (1 Timothy 2:4; Matthew 25:41, 46). He saw us in a desperate condition. To make this deliverance possible, One of the members in the Godhead needed to come down to this earth (Philippians 2:5-11), add to His deity at true human nature and a real body (John 1:1-18; Hebrews 10:7, 9). He needed to be born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23), and live a sinless life Himself (Hebrews 4:15). Then He would need to die as our Substitute to satisfy God’s outraged holiness against our sin nature and our sins/acts of lawlessness (1 Peter 3:18; 1 John 2:2, 4:10). So God the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ volunteered to die for our sins. But without His bodily resurrection from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:17), He wouldn’t be able to save to the uttermost those who would come to Him by faith (Hebrews 7:25; 11:6). That is why He rose again from the dead and now sits at God the Father’s right hand in heaven (Romans 4:25; Colossians 3:1).

Care for the dying.” Not only are we all dying physically a little bit each day, every baby who comes into this world is born spiritually dead and separated from God (Ephesians 2:1). We all need to be “born again from above” (John 3:3-7; 1 Peter 1:23). Being born of Christian parents doesn’t guarantee our salvation. God has no grandchildren. It’s an individual decision we must make for ourselves – Believe in/on Him as our personal Savior, or reject Him and His offer of salvation. Why would anyone do this? Could it be because they love darkness rather than light (John 1:12; 3:19). What about you?

Snatch them in pity from sin and the grave.” God looks with grace, mercy, and pity on us sinners and has done everything necessary for us to be saved and to live a godly, Christian life (2 Peter 1:3, 4). No amount of good works can save us (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). All we need to do is “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ alone, who died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, and we will be saved” (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). Have you done this yet? If not, why not trust in Him right now?

Weep o’er the erring one.” So few Christians ever weep for lost people as Jesus did when He looked over the city of Jerusalem and said, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!” (Matthew 23:37; See Romans 9:1-3). Jude, the Lord’s half-brother wrote: “But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh” (Jude 1:20-23). Has your love for God, for other Christians, and for lost people grown cold or indifferent (John 13:34, 35; 1 John 3:16, 17; Revelation 2:4)? If it has, renew it and let God live His life through your life (Romans 5:5; Galatians 2:20).

Lift up the fallen.” We’ve all fallen into sin and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). As Jesus cast out a demon from a young man and lifted up him up (Mark 9:17-27), so may we be in a position to lift up the fallen and…

Tell them of Jesus.” Jesus said, “I AM the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). Jesus is the only One who can save us eternally (Acts 4:12). The false Christs and a false gospel message leads to everlasting destruction (2 Corinthians 11:4, 13-15). False teachers “are spots in your love feasts, while they feast with you without fear, serving only themselves. They are clouds without water, carried about by the winds; late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots; raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever” (Jude 1:12, 13).

The mighty to save.” Jesus, along with the other two Members in the Godhead, is the omnipotent God (Revelation 1:8), who created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1; John 1:1- 3; Colossians 1:15-17). There is no one whom He can’t save no matter how bad a person has been. “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11; See 1 John 3:4-9). When we place our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ alone to be saved, we are judicially forgiven (Ephesians 1:7) and cannot be condemned (Romans 8:1). Family forgiveness is based on a Christian’s honest confession of his/her sins to God the Father (1 John 1:9).

Feeling Useless? Fanny Crosby, [2] the blind author of this song and many of the other hymns we still sing, might have thought at one time that maybe God couldn’t use someone like her for His glory (1 Corinthians 10:31). But she didn’t allow the devil to defeat her and become bitter or to have an unforgiving spirit toward the “Doctor” who was responsible for her being blind (Hebrews 12:15; See Ephesians 6:17). Once she was saved, she dedicated her life to God (Romans 12:1, 2), and He used her in a mighty way to bless others (See 2 Corinthians 1:3, 4).

Do you feel like God couldn’t possibly use you (See Ephesians 3:20; 1 Peter 4:10)? If so, consider these Bible characters whom God used for His glory:

Noah got drunk, Abraham was too old, Isaac was a daydreamer, Jacob was a liar, Leah was ugly, Joseph was abused, Moses had a stuttering problem, Gideon was afraid, Samson was a womanizer, Rahab was a prostitute, Jeremiah and Timothy were too young, David was an adulterer and a murderer, Elijah was suicidal, Jonah ran from God, Naomi was a widow, Job went bankrupt, John the Baptist ate bugs, Peter denied Christ, the disciples fell asleep while praying, Martha worried about everything, the Samaritan woman was divorced (more than once), Zacchaeus was too small, Paul was a blasphemer and a murderer, Timothy had an ulcer, and Lazarus was dead! [3]

Application. All of us have challenges, hardships, trials, and testings in this life that could easily cause us to become bitter, angry, rebellious, cynical, and hateful toward others who have hurt us. But we’re not alone (1 Corinthians 10:13). Think for a moment about those who have hurt you deeply or let you down in life. Have they treated you as badly and as often as you’ve treated God? Has God forgiven you? If you’ve been forgiven, then why are you unwilling to forgive others (See Matthew 18:21-35; Ephesians 4:32)?

If you are a true Christian, is your bad attitude (B.A.) keeping you from having and exhibiting the nine parts of the “Fruit of the Spirt” (Galatians 5:22, 23) in your life? Are you looking for an opportunity to take vengeance into your own hands (Romans 12:19-21)? How is your bad attitude affecting the unsaved people around you? Do you grumble, gripe, and complain often in their hearing as the children of Israel did while they were in the wilderness (1 Corinthians 10:1-12)? Are you suffering physically or mentally and about to die prematurely because of your rebellious, and unforgiving spirit (See 1 Corinthians 11:30; James 5:19, 20; 1 John 5:16; 1 Samuel 15:23)? Do you know that God wants us, as believers, to bless and pray for those who persecute us (Romans 12:14; Matthew 5:44)? Is honest confession to God and others (if necessary) in order (1 John 1:9; James 5:16; Proverbs 28:13)?

When we are tempted by the devil to be bitter or have an unforgiving spirit, we need to put on the whole “armor of God” (Ephesians 6:10-17). The “helmet of salvation” is the piece of the armor that helps us overcome these two temptations (Ephesians 6:17).

If you are saved, and rightly related to God the Holy Spirit (1 John 1:9; Galatians 5:16, 25; Ephesians 5:18), you are in a position to help someone who has a bad attitude (B.A.) and take part in adjusting his/her thinking before sin is involved (Galatians 6:1 ff; 1 John 3:4). You could keep a person from dying prematurely (1 John 5:15; James 5:19, 20) so he/she can live a productive life for the glory of God and good of others.

One ship sails east

One ship sails west

Regardless of how the winds blow.

It is the set of the sail

And not the gale

That determines the way we go.”

Charles R. Swindoll [4]

Help. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change if necessary (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17). If you have questions and/or comments, we can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If this has helped you, please SHARE it with others.

[1] “Rescue The Perishing” story. Robert J. Morgan, “Then Sings My Soul” Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, TN, p. 175

[2] Fanny Crosby https://www.wholesomewords.org/biography/bcrosby15.html

[3] https://www.jollynotes.com/biblical-examples-of-imperfect-people-god-used-in-the-bible/

[4] Charles R. Swindoll, Laugh Again, Word Publishing, Dallas, 1992, p. 34

Bad News & Good News” https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/the-bad-news-the-good-news/

Music Video: Rescue The Perishing https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LMFRt2aLuMI

*Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.  Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Perhaps you enjoy reading mystery novels or like watching crime scene investigations. I found the “Columbo” TV series to be very interesting as Detective Lt. Columbo went about looking for clues in his investigations as he tried to “convict” the real criminal. Do you remember his catchphrase “Just one more thing”? He always got the right person who was the guilty party.

Criminals. There is a lot of criminal activity going on in all levels of society and there are crimes that never get solved. Eye witnesses often are “mysteriously snuffed out” before they can testify in court. Sometimes critical evidence is withheld or distorted so as to convict the wrong person. Perhaps this happens more often than we might want to admit, and it’s happening all over the world. As the Scriptures teach, it’s going to get worse as lawlessness (sin) abounds (2 Timothy 3:1 ff; 1 John 3:4).

Unjust Judges. While there are judges who haven’t been corrupted by bribes, others misuse their office and condemn the wrong person and release the guilty party. This problem existed in the Old Testament times among God’s chosen people, the Jews, and it still happens today. Crimes will continue to be committed Because the sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil” (Ecclesiastes 8:11).

The Righteous Judge. But there is coming a day when everyone of us will stand before the Righteous Judge, the Lord Jesus Christ (2 Timothy 4:8; See John 5:22; Hebrews 9:27). It won’t be to determine if we get into heaven or end up in the lake of fire, but to determine our degree of pleasure in heaven or our suffering in the lake of fire forever (Psalm 16:11; 1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Matthew 10:15; 25:30, 41, 46; Revelation 20:11-15).

Condemnation. He who believes in Him [i. e. the Lord Jesus Christ who died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day – 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4] is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (John 3:18; See Romans 8:1). Once a person dies physically, his/her eternal destiny is settled and irreversible.

Omniscient & Omnipotent. Being God manifested in human flesh (John 1:1-18; Philippians 2:5-11), the Lord Jesus Christ knows everything we’ve ever thought, said, and done. He also knows our motives. “Probable cause” won’t be an issue with Him. Good works done by Christians with bad motives won’t be rewarded (1Corinthians 3:11-15; 4:5). “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents [motivations] of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12; See 1 Corinthians 4:5). “For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light” (Mark 4:22; See Psalm 139).

Denial. “[The wicked man] has said in his heart, ‘God has forgotten; He hides His face; He will never see’” (Psalm 10:11). Don’t be deceived, “The wicked shall be turned into hell, And all the nations that forget God” (Psalm 9:17). But I [Jesus] say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment” (Matthew 12:36).

Lake Of Fire. “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8). “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you [who have placed your faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ alone, who died for your sins…and rose again bodily on the third day] were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).

Confused? Are you absolutely sure that you will go to heaven the moment you die? Why should God let you into His heaven? If you believe you’re saved, is there anything you could do or fail to do that would cause you to lose your salvation? If so, what would it be? Do you know how to lead a person to Christ so he/she can be saved? What would you say to him/her?

Contact. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17). If you have questions and/or comments, we can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. Please SHARE this with others.

“Bad News – Good News” https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/the-bad-news-the-good-news/

Dr. Manfred Kober: Do We Really Know The Gospel? (24 word presentation)

https://faith.edu/faith-news/do-we-really-know-the-gospel/

Baseball. Someone has described it as being as boring as watching paint try. It’s too slow for them. And yet from time to time the fans are shocked when they see grown men acting like little children who put on temper tantrums when the umpire calls a strike on them. Some parents are known to act this way at their children’s games. One of my nephews, who is an umpire and a referee, can attest to this. (View Opie and the Spoiled Kid episode below.) [1]

Recently I watched some clips of highly paid athletes using bats and their fists to pound on things in the dugout. They vented out their frustrations and no one tried to restrain them. Is this the way we want our children to act when they don’t get their way? Consider also the horrific casualties that come from “road rage” on the highways. Do not be deceived: ‘Evil company corrupts good habits’” (1 Corinthians 15:33). With whom do you and your children “hang out”? What are you and they watching on TV? Who are your heroes/idols and their heroes/idols?

This reminds me of what the Minnesota Crime Commission wrote many years ago about babies. Every baby starts life as a little savage. He is completely selfish and self-centered. He wants what he wants when he wants it: his bottle, his mother’s attention, his playmate’s toys, his uncle’s watch, or whatever. Deny him these and he seethes with rage and aggressiveness which would be murderous were he not so helpless. He’s dirty, he has no morals, no knowledge, no developed skills. This means that all children, not just certain children but all children, are born delinquent. If permitted to continue in their self-centered world of infancy, given free reign to their impulsive actions to satisfy each want, every child would grow up a criminal, a thief, a killer, a rapist. Are we currently reaping what we’ve sown? Thanks Dr. Spock.

Lawless (sinful) behavior is on the rise all around the world just as the Scriptures predicted it would in the last days just before Christ’s second coming to rule on/over the earth for 1,000 years (Matthew 24:12; Revelation 20:1-7). One of these days these lawless people will be led and governed by the “lawless one,” better known as “the antichrist” (2 Thessalonians 2:7). He will deceive many people by performing the same kind of miracles that Jesus and His disciples did while there were here on earth (Acts 2:22; 2 Corinthians 12:12; 2 Thessalonians 2:9). We hope you will be in heaven, rather than on earth, when he comes on the scene. We don’t set dates, but these days seem to be just around the corner. [2]

But we also need to know that Christians have two natures (See Romans 7:15-25). Those who are dominated by their own sin nature rather than by their new nature from God, can act like unsaved people and engage in all the “works of the flesh” which are perversions of good things (Galatians 5:19-21). The Christians in the church in Corinth are examples of this kind of behavior (1 Corinthians 3:1 ff; 5:1 ff; 10:1 ff). When we’re tempted to act this way, we can/should rely on God the Holy Spirit for strength to overcome these strong, sinful desires (lusts) so we don’t sin (Galatians 5:16, 25; Romans 6:11-14). The temptations you have are not unique to you (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Did you know that we can/should be angry without sinning (Ephesians 4:26)? Jesus was (Matthew 21:12, 13). [3] You can learn a lot about a person by discovering what makes him/her laugh, cry, or get angry. What are others learning about you from your actions and reactions? Are you being hypocritical? Do you claim to love God and hate other Christians (John 13:34, 35; 1 John 2:9-11; 3:16, 17)? We don’t have to like what other people do, but we are supposed to seek their highest well being which may involve our speaking the truth to them in love (Ephesians 4:15; See 2 Timothy 2:24-26). We need to display the “Fruit of the Spirit” at the right time, for the right reasons, toward the right people (Galatians 5:22, 23), and for the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31) and the good of others (Galatians 6:10).

Believe it or not, Christians don’t have to sin but we still will sin from time to time (1 John 2:1 ff; 1 John 3:9, 10). God has provided everything we need for life and godliness within the pages of the Scriptures so we can glorify Him in a spiritually dark world (2 Peter 1:3; Philippians 2:15). No temptation has overtaken you [Christians] except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it”* (1 Corinthians 10:13).

When we, as Christians, sin (act lawlessly) we need to do three things: We need to discern/judge/be aware of what we have done (1 Corinthians 11:31), repent/change our minds about what we did (2 Corinthians 7:8-12), and then promptly confess our known sins to God our Father (i.e. say the same thing about our sins that He does about them). Then we need to claim His promise to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness so our family fellowship with Him and other believers can be restored when we walk in the light as He is in the light (1 John 1:5-10).

When necessary, we also need to ask forgiveness from those against whom we have sinned (James 5:16). If they grant it to us, we need to ask them not to hold a grudge against us. God won’t hold against us the sins we’ve confessed to Him (See Ezekiel 33:16). But He doesn’t forget anything (Isaiah 46:10). Sometime in the future, He most likely will allow us to be tempted in the same area again so we have the opportunity to overcome the temptation and show our love for Him (James 1:12-15) rather than yield to the temptation and sin again.

If you’re not a true Christian, it’s not a matter of confessing every sin you’ve ever committed in your life before you can be saved. Neither is it that you promise God that you will never sin again, or that you will make Him the Master of your life (Lordship in exchange for salvation). It’s believing in/on the Lord Jesus Christ alone, who died for your sins…and rose again bodily on the third day (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Acts 16:31). [4] Have you done this yet? If not, why not now?

Once you’ve been “born again [from above]” God wants you to grow spiritually (1 Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 3:18) [5] and serve Him and others effectively (1 Peter 4:10; Ephesians 2:10). He wants you to lead others to Christ so they can be saved (Acts 1:8). We’re here to assist you and others who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17). Contact us for more information at www.kelseypeach.com. Please let us know if this article has helped you and SHARE it with others so we can help them too.

[1] Opie and the Spoiled Kid. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSTdHClwwSg

[2] Coming Events: https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2016/02/20/the-order-of-coming-events-2/

[3] https://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-angry.html

[4] Dr. Manfred Kober: “Do We Really Know The Gospel?”

https://faith.edu/faith-news/do-we-really-know-the-gospel/

The Human Problem. The Divine Provision. The Personal Procurement.

Friend, You have sinned. But Christ died for sinners and rose again.

Trust Him alone and He will save you eternally. Do it now!”

Dr. Ron Shea, The Clear Gospel,(Illustrated)

http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/English/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

My Presentation:  https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/the-bad-news-the-good-news/

[5] Dr. H. L. Schafer, Maturing In Christ, Second Edition, 2016, Xuon Press

https://www.xulonpress.com/bookstore/bookdetail.php?PB_ISBN=9781609578381&HC_ISBN=

*Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

Used by permission. All rights reserved.

The covid19 virus, which seemed to come suddenly out of nowhere, has been responsible for thousands of deaths and will continue to kill many more people. It has had a devastating effect on the whole world and has altered people’s lives in many ways. (If you or someone you know has been affected by it, please let us know about it. We’d like to pray for you and/or for them.)

There is a billionaire “mad scientist” who thinks he can solve this pandemic problem with a vaccine that he wants everyone in the world to take. If one doesn’t take his vaccine voluntarily, he/she may be forced to take it for the “good of humanity.” As a eugenicist he also wants to play the role of God and decide who gets to live and who dies. How much more draconian and distorted can things get?

But he and all the rest of us need to made aware of a much deadlier, latent virus lurking in everyone of us. It’s known as the “tsumi virus.” (It’s not the “tsunami” virus). Maybe you’ve never heard of it. It has far greater and never ending consequences unless the proper “antidote” is taken. Without our knowing much about it, this “virus” has been passed on to us from our parents and grandparents and we, in turn, are passing it on to our children and grandchildren. It’s in our genes. It can flare up at any moment. If you happen to know a Japanese person, ask him/her about the “tsumi virus.”

This particular virus can cause people to engage in disgusting and perverted behavior which might shock most people. It can lead to an early and painful death. Sadly, more and more degenerate people think it’s an acceptable life style and they even approve it. Do you? (Read Romans 1:18-32)

Some people who claim to be “spiritual/religious health care professionals” deny that we all have this “tsumi virus” or say that it can be eradicated during our life time. It can’t be. (Read 1 John 1:8; Romans 3:10-23; 6:23; 7:15-25.) So what can we do about this virus and how do we escape the devastating consequences?

First, we need to know what the “tsumi virus” is. Tsumi, in the Japanese language, means “sin.” But what is sin? The Bible defines it for us. “Sin is lawlessness” (1 John 3:4). It is acting contrary to God’s instructions to us. God’s Word tells us how to be delivered from everlasting condemnation. He also tells Christians how He wants us to live and overcome this virus (Romans 8:1; 1:16, 17). We are saved/delivered/rescued from hell “by [God’s] grace, through faith, [in the Christ of the Scriptures]… and not [by our good] works” (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). The Lord Jesus Christ is “the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through [Him]” (John 14:6; See Acts 4:12).

God has a very simple solution/antidote to counteract this virus: Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ alone, who died for your sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). But many people say that this is too easy. So they add their good works to their faith. But this is not acceptable to God (Isaiah 64:6). [1] Others refuse God’s offer of salvation because they love darkness rather than light and because their deeds are evil (John 3:19). They prefer to engage in the passing pleasures to sin (Hebrews 11:25).

While there are many sins (acts of lawlessness) we commit often, there is one sin that will keep a person out of heaven. It is the sin of unbelief in Christ (John 3:16, 18, 36; 5:24; 16:8-11). All other sins are forgivable (See 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Ephesians 1:7). Here is what happens once we’ve placed our faith and trust in Christ alone to save us. God’s Word tells us that we acted right by dying for our sins in the person of our Substitute. At the same time God puts Christ’s righteousness to our account so we can enter into heaven (Romans 4:22-24; 6:23; Galatians 2:20; James 2:23).

While Jesus was hanging on the cross, at high noon, God the Father placed the sins of all mankind on His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ and forsook Him for three hours (Isaiah 53:6; Psalm 22:1 ff; Matthew 27:46; 1 Peter 3:18). By the way, God the Father is not “a dirty bully.” Jesus (the God-man) volunteered to do this to provide deliverance from hell for us (Hebrews 10:7, 9). Furthermore, God, being omniscient (Isaiah 46:10), could look into the future and see all the sins we’d ever commit and take them also and place them on Christ so He could pay the debt we owed to God (Romans 6:23).

We know that God the Father was satisfied with the sacrifice/payment that His Son (1 John 2:2), the Lord Jesus Christ, made for our sins because He raised Jesus’ body from the dead on the third day as predicted (Psalm 16:10; Matthew 12:40; John 2:19). When He ascended back to heaven, Jesus was accepted by God the Father. Then Jesus sat down at His right hand where He is right now as the only Head of the Church (Romans 4:25; 1 John 2:2; 4:10; Acts 2:33; Ephesians 1:20-23). Contrary to what the Romanists teach, it was a once and for all sufficient sacrifice (Romans 6:10; Hebrews 7:27; 9:12) and there is only one Mediator between God and men (1 Timothy 2:5). Mary is the mother of Jesus’ humanity, not the Mother of God.”

If you refuse to believe in/on Him as your personal Savior, and accept His payment for your sins, you will be separated forever from God in the lake of fire (Matthew 25:41, 46; Revelation 21:8). Your degree of suffering there will be determined by Jesus (John 5:22) at the Great White Throne according to the works you did on earth (Revelation 20:10-15). We don’t want you or anyone else to be separated from God forever.

Have you placed your faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ alone to save you? If not, why not now? You can be assured of your eternal destiny in heaven (Romans 8:16; 1 John 5:13). Once you’ve been saved, we want to help you grow spiritually (2 Peter 3:18), use your spiritual gift with love (1 Peter 4:10; Ephesians 2:10), and to reproduce yourself (Acts 1:8; Matthew 28:19, 20).

If you have questions and/or comments and need additional assistance, we can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If this has helped you, please let us know how it has. Then SHARE this with others too. Together we can accomplish much more for God’s glory and the good of others.

[1] Clear Gospel, by Dr. Ron Shea:

http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/English/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

Lordship Salvation: Dr. Andy Woods, https://www.bibleprophecyblog.com/2011/03/what-is-wrong-with-lordship-salvation.html

George Zeller, http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/salvatio/lordshrq.pdf

Recently I had a man, who lives in another state, whom I had led to the Lord for salvation several years ago, call me to tell me about a frightening experience he had. In the middle of the night he felt like he was being attacked mentally by the devil or demons. He wanted to know what the Scriptures have to say about such things. I pointed out to him from the Bible that while Christians can’t be “demon possessed (1 Corinthians 6:19, 20; John 14:23; 1 John 4:4 ) they can be “demon oppressed” (1 Peter 5:8; Ephesians 6:10-17; 2 Timothy 2:24-26; Acts 10:38). Maybe you, or someone you know, has had such an experience yourself. If so, read on. God’s Word offers hope.

Thoughts. This is where the devil or demons usually attack Christians (Ephesians 6:10-17; See 1 Peter 5:8; 2 Corinthians 2:11). Thankfully they need permission from God to tempt us (Luke 22:31; 1 Corinthians 10:13; Ephesians 6:13). It might be for us to be bitter toward God and blame Him or someone else because of a bad experience we’ve had in life (Hebrews 12:14, 15), or they might tempt us to have an unforgiving spirit toward someone who has hurt us deeply, whether it be physically, emotionally, or mentally (2 Corinthians 2:10, 11).

Language. The devil or demons also can tempt believers to engage in filthy speech (Ephesians 4:27-29). “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45; See James 3:10; Ephesians 4:15).

Personalize. Has someone hurt you very badly? Are you looking for an opportunity to take vengeance on him/her? If so, this bad attitude will eat you up and hurt you far more than the person whom you want to hurt. Maturing, spiritual Christians can/should help such believers so they don’t let the trespass become a sin (Galatians 6:1-4; See Ephesians 2:1). Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord” (Romans 12:19). Do you really believe that God will do this for you in His time and in His way?

Tools. Here is a strange question. Have you ever given thanks for the person who hurt you (1 Timothy 2:1) or considered that God may want to use him/her as a hammer, chisel, saw, or sandpaper to help conform you into Christ’s image (Romans 8:29; 12:1, 2)? If you’re a Christian, do you have and are you displaying the “Fruit of the Spirt” toward that individual? (Read Galatians 5:22, 23.) How might the Lord Himself act and/or react if He were standing in your place (Philippians 2:5 ff)? Are you suffering for doing what is right or for something wrong (1 Peter 2:19 ff; 4:12 ff; Philippians 1:29)? Is confession in order (1 John 1:9; James 5:16; Proverbs 28:13)?

Torture. Christians who have an unforgiving spirit or bitterness in their heart can be afflicted by the torturers (Matthew 18:21-35). This could involve demonic oppression and torment (Examples: King Saul who wanted to kill David – 1 Samuel 16:14, 23; 19:9; Satanically ensnared Christians – 2 Timothy 2:24-26). Keep this in mind. No one has ever wronged us to the same degree that we have wronged and sinned against God. “Sin is lawlessness” (1 John 3:4). God wants His children to “… be kind to one another, tenderhearted, [graciously] forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32; 1:7; See Luke 23:34; 1 Corinthians 2:8). Are you doing this? If not, why?

Forgiveness. Let’s back up some. At the time of our salvation we are judicially forgiven once for all (Ephesians 1:7; See Romans 8:1). But we need family forgiveness when we sin as God’s children so we can get back in fellowship with Him (1 John 1:5-10). When God forgives us He doesn’t remember our sins against us (Ezekiel 33:16), but He doesn’t forget what we did because He is omniscient (Isaiah 46:10; John 2:24; Psalm 139). He will usually allow us to be tempted again in the same area to give us another opportunity to display either our love for Him or for our love of the pleasure we derive from engaging in a particular sin (1 Corinthians 10:13; 1 John 2:15-17; Hebrews 11:25; James 1:12). We have a choice to make – to sin and grieve God (Ephesians 4:30) or to gain victory and please God (2 Corinthians 5:9). There is a “sin unto [a premature, physical] death” that defiant Christians can commit (1 Corinthians 11:30; James 5:19, 20; 1 John 5:16; Proverbs 29:1).

Carnality. The Christians in the church at Corinth were told to disassociate themselves from the “Christian man” who had been committing incest with his mother and to “deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh” (1 Corinthians 5:1-8; See Galatians 5:19-21; 1 Timothy 1:20). Apparently, after they did this, he repented (changed his mind) and confessed his sins to God and to the church (2 Corinthians 2:1-11; 1 John 1:9; James 5:16). Once he did this, the Apostle Paul admonished them to forgive him and take him back into their fellowship. If they refused to do this, he warned them about the devil’s attempt to take advantage of them and cause them to be “demonically oppressed” (2 Corinthians 2:1-11). Are you Satanically oppressed or ensnared right now (2 Timothy 2:24-26)?

Attacks. When Satan, or more likely a demon, attacks our minds with any of these particular temptations: to have an unforgiving spirit, to be bitter, disappointed, discouraged, or to act cowardly, we must put on the whole armor of God and focus our attention on the “helmet of salvation” to overcome them (Ephesians 6:17). We need to think about all the spiritual blessings we have in our “salvation package” (Ephesians 1:3 ff).

Biblical Meditation. “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, … noble, … just, … pure,  lovely, … of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things” (Philippians 4:8). Are you doing this? If not, with God’s help why not start now?

Song. “O soul are you weary and troubled? / No light in the darkness you see? / There’s light for a look at the Savior / And life more abundant and free / Turn you eyes upon Jesus / Look full in His wonderful face / And the things of earth will grow strangely dim / In the light of His glory and grace.” – Helen Lemmel

Help. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change if necessary (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17). We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If you’d like to get new articles as they come out, click on “Follow.” Please SHARE this with others.

Gospel. If you’re not saved yet, please read this article carefully: https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/the-bad-news-the-good-news/

We firmly believe that while there are many ways for someone to die physically, there is only one way for someone to enter heaven. Jesus said, “I AM the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). This is not a “politically correct” statement and it raises some people’s ire (anger, wrath, fury) when we say this. But it is still a true statement.

The Apostle Peter. He got himself into “hot water” with the religious, Jewish leaders when he said, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name [i.e. Jesus’] under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). They threatened him and told the disciples not to speak to any man in Jesus’ name (Acts 4:18). “But Peter and John answered and said to them, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard’” (Acts 4:19, 20). The persecution of Christians has been going on since the early days of the Church. Jesus told His disciples to expect it (John 16:2; See 2 Timothy 3:12). It’s happening in may places around the world and it’s intensifying in our country. We should pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ who are suffering for the cause of Christ.

The Apostle Paul. When he went to the city of Philippi to point people to Christ and to start a local church, there was a young girl who was possessed with a spirit of divination. She followed Paul and Silas around and said, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation” (Acts 16:17). From the Greek text, in which the New Testament was written, she actually was saying that “these men…proclaim to us ‘a’ way of salvation.” This greatly annoyed Paul. So he commanded the demon spirit to come out of her. This kept her from making money for her masters which led to Paul and Silas’ being beaten unjustly and thrown in jail. This eventually led to the salvation of the jailor and his family when they put their faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ alone, who died for their sins…and rose again bodily from the dead on the third day (Acts 16:31-33). Yes, good can come out of bad situations.

Suffering. Has your personal suffering for Christ been responsible for someone’s being saved? Do others even know that you are a Christian? Maybe you’re not truly saved yet. Are you ashamed of Jesus as Peter was? Why should God let you into His heaven? If you are depending on any of your “good works” for your salvation, you’re not saved (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). Be honest with yourself! If you have doubts, we’re here to help you gain assurance of your salvation (1 John 5:13).

Abundant Life. Not only did Jesus come to show us the only way to God in heaven and how to secure “eternal life” (God’s quality of life), He also wanted us to enjoy this kind of life “more abundantly” (John 10:10). Every person has everlasting life (existence) and will spend it either in God’s presence or he/she will be separated forever from God in the lake of fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels/demons (John 14:1-3; Matthew 25:41, 46). The wicked dead are NOT annihilated or reincarnated as some cults and religions teach. Our living “abundantly” involves –

Walking By Faith. “The [justified ones] shall live by faith” (Romans 1:17). We need to know the promises that God has given to Christians and mix them with faith so we can enjoy “Divine rest” and the “peace of God” that surpasses all understanding (Hebrews 4:2 ff; Philippians 4:6, 7). Not every promise in the Bible is ours to claim. Some of them were addressed to the Jews alone. Some were conditional (Example: The “Ten Commandments” Exodus 20; Deuteronomy 28). Others were unconditional. (Examples: Genesis 12:1-3; 15:18-21; 17:1-8; 2 Samuel 7:4-17; Jeremiah 31:31-33). Some promises were given to specific individuals like Abraham regarding his having a son in his old age (Genesis 15:1-6).

Living By The Right Rules. When we interpret the Scriptures normally, historically, grammatically, and contextually, as we should, we soon discover that God has different rules for different people in different times. They’re called “Dispensations.” Three main ones include “Law,” “Grace,” and “Kingdom.” Sadly, many Christians try to live by the wrong set of rules – “Mosaic Law,” or “Kingdom” instead of by “Grace” principles. The seven “Dispensations” are designed to test mankind’s obedience to God which most people fail. They are not different ways of salvation as some have suggested. They are designed to demonstrate to us that no matter what a person does independently of God, he/she can’t please God in his/her own strength (John 15:5). (Download a FREE copy of our “Understanding the Times Dispensations Chart” on our website.)

Doing Good Works. These are not the things a person must do to be saved, but they are the things that God planned for believers to do once they have been saved (Ephesians 2:8-10; 1 Peter 4:10). Jesus said,“You [disciples] did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you” (John 15:16). In his book entitled, “So Great Salvation” Dr. Charles Ryrie points out this fruit of which Jesus spoke can be (1) a Christlike character, (2) a life characterized by good works, (3) a faithful witness, (4) a pair of lips that praise God, and (5) a generous giving of one’s money. [1] Question – If you claim to be a Christian, do others see any of these things in your life? James, Jesus’ half brother, wrote, “…Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble! But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?” (James 2:18-20).

Giving Thanks. Christians are instructed to give thanks for all things apart from sin (Ephesians 5:20), in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18), and for all men (1 Timothy 2:1) whom God may use for His glory and for our good. Christians who are “filled with the Holy Spirit” will have singing hearts, thankful hearts, and submissive hearts (Ephesians 5:18-21). What kind of heart do you have? What comes forth from it? A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).

Having The Right Purpose. Our primary purpose in life is/should be to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever. We glorify God when we make Him known to others through our words and deeds (1 Corinthians 10:31). God is also glorified when believers grow spiritually (1 Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 3:18), serve Him by serving others with love (Galatians 5:13; 1 Peter 4:10), and when we share the Gospel clearly with those who are lost as we are led by God the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:14) and as He gives us opportunities and opens doors for us (Revelation 3:8).

Summary. There’s only one way to be saved. There is a distinct set of rules to govern Christian’s lives. There is a specific purpose for our being here on earth.

Help. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2,15; 3:16, 17) and who want to SHARE what they learn with others. We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If this has helped you, we’d like to know how it has. To receive future articles as they come out, click on FOLLOW.

[1] Dr. Charles Ryrie, Christian Fruit https://bible.org/illustration/christian-fruit

[2] Promises For Christians – https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/04/01/promises-for-christians-to-claim-2/

If we, as Christians, want to do and be in the will of God, and be well pleasing to Him, and meet His approval (2 Corinthians 5:9; See Matthew 25:21), we must give thanks in all things/situations in which we find ourselves (1 Thessalonians 5:18), for all things apart from sin (Ephesians 5:20), and for all men (1 Timothy 2:1) whom God may use as “chisels, hammers, clamps, and saws” to help conform us into Christ’s image (Romans 8:28 ff; 12:1, 2; See Genesis 50:20).

Recently, while I was sitting in my car and waiting for my wife to get done shopping, I got out a small sheet of paper and started writing down some things for which I thought I should be thankful even in the midst of this corona virus pandemic that is taking the lives of many people. I’m thankful because

God is still in control of all things, including this virus. He is all powerful (Revelation 1:8; Job 1; 2). He will keep the devil, who is a murderer (John 8:44), and wicked men (Ephesians 2:2; Psalm 2:1 ff) from wiping out all physical life on earth with their weapons of mass destruction – whether they be nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons. Thankfully God will restrict the man of sin’s (antichrist’s) power to seven years (Daniel 9:27). Otherwise no flesh on earth would survive (Matthew 24:22). This awful time in human history could be just around the corner.

God will not allow me, as His child, to be tried and tested beyond my abilities. He will make a way for me to escape sinful temptations (1 Corinthians 10:13; 1 John 2:1). They can come from the devil (1 Peter 5:8; James 4:7; Ephesians 6:10-17), from my own sinful nature (Romans 6:11-14; Galatians 5:16-21; 1 John 1:8; Romans 7:15-25), or from the present world system over which the devil currently rules (1 John 2:15-17; 1 Corinthians 7:31; Ephesians 2:2; John 14:30). He devised it during the days of Cain to try to control the sinful nature of man (Luke 11:50, 51; Genesis 4:16-22). When I sin, by acting  lawlessly (1 John 3:4), I’m supposed to confess my sins by naming them to God so I can be forgiven and my family fellowship can be restored (1 John 1:6-9; 2:1; Proverbs 28:13). I’m judicially forgiven at the moment of my salvation (Ephesians 1:7; See Romans 8:1).

God planned for me to be alive at this time in human history and wants me to bring glory to Him in all that I do and say (Ephesians 2:10; Psalm 139:1 ff; 1 Corinthians 10:31; See Esther 4:14; Exodus 9:16). Jesus said this to His disciples, You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you” (John 15:16).

God has given me the opportunity to display the “Fruit of the Spirit” during this time (Galatians 5:22, 23). He will produce it in my life when I’m filled with the Spirit and willing to be led by Him (Ephesians 5:18; Romans 8:14). It’s my responsibility, as a Christian, to direct this fruit properly toward the right objects, at the right time, and for the right reasons (John 13:34, 35; 1 John 2:15-17; 3:1-17; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 13:1 ff).

God has revealed the future to me (and to all other Christians) in the pages of the Scriptures (2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Corinthians 5:1-9; Revelation 1-22). [1] I know who wins in the end (Philippians 2:10, 11). Over ¼ of the Scriptures were prophetic in nature at the time when they were written by holy men of God (2 Peter 1:21) for our learning and comfort (Romans 15:4). He will keep His unconditional promises to us whether we believe them or not. He cannot lie (Titus 1:2; John 14:6).

I’m also thankful because this deadly virus

It won’t last forever (Revelation 21:4). True believers in Christ have a bright future awaiting them (John 14:1-3; Psalm 16:11), but all unbelievers who lack Christ’s imputed righteousness (John 16:8-11; Romans 4:22; James 2:23), and who die without Christ as their personal Savior (1 Timothy 4:10), will suffer forever with the devil and his angels/demons in the lake of fire (Matthew 25:41, 46; Revelation 21:8). The “Great White Throne” judgment will determine the degree of suffering that an unbeliever will experience for eternity (Revelation 20:11-15; See Matthew 10:15; 11:22, 24). The trustworthy Scriptures (John 17:17; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17) don’t teach the ultimate annihilation of the wicked or reincarnation.

It makes me more aware of my mortality (Hebrews 9:27; See an exception in 1 Corinthians 15:51, 52). If I, as a Christian, choose to live a life of sin, God may terminate my physical life on earth prematurely without taking my salvation away from me (Matthew 18:34; 1 Corinthians 11:28; 1 John 5:16, James 5:19, 20). It is a fearful thing [for a carnal Christian] to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31; 12:5 ff).

It has given me opportunities to witness to lost people (Acts 1:8; 1 Peter 3:15). The Gospel for salvation is the same for Jews and non-Jews (Romans 1:16; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). Merely knowing and believing the facts of the Gospel aren’t enough to save anyone (James 2:19). We must have a change of mind (repent) and transfer our faith and trust from ourselves and our good works (Isaiah 64:6) over to the Lord Jesus Christ of the Scriptures alone (and not to the false Christ of the cults) if we are to be saved (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5; Matthew 24:5; 2 Corinthians 11:4, 13-15).

It has given me time to reflect on the value, quality, and quantity of my work on earth (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 4:5; 11:28). If my good works are like gold, silver, and precious stones, I will be rewarded. If they don’t measure up to God’s standards, they will simply be burned up and I won’t receive the crowns, rewards, or praise from God that could have been mine (Revelation 3:11). Thankfully, my salvation can’t be withdrawn from me even if I commit the sin unto physical death (John 3:16, 18, 36; 5:24; 10:28, 29; 1 John 5:16). We’ve heard this said, “Only one life will soon be past; only what’s done for Christ [and His honor and glory] will last.”

It has given to me an opportunity to shine in a spiritually dark world (See Matthew 5:16). Spiritual darkness and wickedness are intensifying all around us (1 Timothy 4:1 ff; 2 Timothy 3:1 ff; Romans 1:18 ff). But the darker it gets, the brighter true Christians can shine for God (Philippians 2:15). The Lord Jesus Christ, who is “The Light of the world” (John 8:12; 9:5), may return much sooner than most people realize. Perhaps Today! If you are a true Christian who really loves His imminent return, you will live differently and you will be given the “Crown of Righteousness” (2 Timothy 4:8; See Revelation 4:10).

Questions: Are you absolutely sure that you will go to heaven the moment you die? Why should God let you into His heaven? If you believe that you are saved, is there anything you could do or fail to do that would cause you to lose your salvation? If so, what? If you’ve been saved, have you been baptized/immersed (Matthew 28:19, 20)? Are you growing spiritually (1 Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 3:18)? Are you serving God and others with your spiritual gift (1 Peter 4:10; 1 Corinthians 12:1 ff)? Are you consistently sharing the Gospel with others who aren’t saved (Acts 1:8)? If not, why?

Help. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17). We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If this article has helped you, please let us know how is has and then SHARE this with others.  To receive future articles as they come out, click on Follow.

[1] See our FREE “Understanding The Times Dispensations Chart” on our website and an article entitled “The Order Of Coming Events” at https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2016/02/20/the-order-of-coming-events-2/

Because of the limitations of our finite minds, and our failure, at times, to accept God’s Word as the absolute truth (John 14:6; 17:17), we often see things differently than God does. His thoughts and His ways are so much higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8, 9). But by faith we are able to put substance to what we can’t see (Hebrews 11:1). Christians have been blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ (1 Corinthians 2:9 ff; Ephesians 1:3 ff).

Thoughts. Most of us think more highly of ourselves than we should (Romans 12:3). We also would like to believe that man isn’t quite as bad as he/she is portrayed in the Scriptures (Romans 3:10-23; Jeremiah 17:9; Isaiah 64:6). But God’s Word tells us the truth about God, the devil, and about us sinners. We’re not as bad as we could be but we all are as “bad off” as we can be if we’re without the Lord Jesus Christ as our personal Savior. We all have a very serious problem, but God has a solution that can keep us out of the lake of fire and take us to heaven.

Let us consider some things that may be hard for us to imagine –

Judas. He was one of Jesus’ twelve disciples (Matthew 10:4), who followed Him for over three years. He was entrusted with the money box (John 13:29). He went out with the other eleven disciples to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom. He was involved in healing the sick, cleansing the lepers, raising the dead, casting out demons (Matthew 10:8; 7:21-23). But he went on to betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12, 13; Matthew 26:15). Why did Judas do this? Perhaps his hope of being the treasurer in Christ’s kingdom vanished when Jesus told His disciples about a temporary delay in His plans as it related to the setting up of His kingdom on/over the earth (Matthew 16:20-23). Jesus did this because the Jews, as a whole, rejected Him when He didn’t meet their expectations (John 1:11; Isaiah 53:1 ff). And so Judas betrayed the Lord to the Jewish authorities. But after he did this, he regretted what he had done, returned the money, and went out and hanged himself (Matthew 27:5). Even though he was a disciple, he never was a true believer. He was so close, and yet so far away from the only One who could save him from the lake of fire. In fact none of the other disciples suspected him in any way when Jesus told them that one of them would betray Him (John 13:21). Are you like Judas – a follower/disciple, but not a true Christian?

Peter. He was a part of Jesus’ inner circle, along with James and John (Matthew 17:1; Mark 5:37). He declared that Jesus was the Christ, the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:16). He boasted that he would never deny the Lord, but he did it three times before the rooster crowed just as the Lord predicted (Luke 22:34, 61). When wicked men came to arrest the Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane, Peter tried to defend the Lord by cutting off the ear of the High Priest’s servant. The Lord rebuked him for doing that but He didn’t tell Peter to get rid of his sword (Matthew 26:51-53). He had good intentions, but he planned to do it in his own strength. He yielded to a temptation from the devil to play the part of a coward when he was asked about his being a disciple of Jesus (Luke 22:31, 32; 2 Timothy 1:7). Try to imagine how Peter must have felt for the next three days. After His resurrection, the Lord appeared to Peter to restore and strengthen him (John 21:15-18). On the Day of Pentecost he preached a powerful sermon that resulted in 3,000 Jews being saved (Acts 2:43; Romans 1:16). If you’re a true believer, have you ever denied that you know the Lord by your words or your deeds?

The Other Ten Disciples. They all fled from Jesus when He was arrested in the Garden, even though they had just seen Him display His power that caused the wicked men who came to arrest him fall backwards when He said, “I AM” (John 18:6; Exodus 3:14). He told His disciples that He could have called twelve legions of angels to deliver Him had He wanted to do so (Matthew 26:53). But that wasn’t part of the Decree/Plan that had been made in eternity past (Ephesians 1:11) that included God the Son’s becoming a man by adding to His Deity a true human nature and a real body (Philippians 2:5-11; Hebrews 10:5) so He could live a sinless life (Hebrews 4:15) and then die as a Substitute for the sins of all mankind (1 John 2:2; 4:10). Do you flee when you should stand firm? Do you hang around when you should flee? (See 1 Peter 5:8; Ephesians 6:10-17; 2 Timothy 2:22).

The Other Followers Of Jesus. Many of the Jews followed Jesus and wanted Him to be their “Welfare King” (John 6:15) and their “Conquering King” (Isaiah 9:6, 7) who would deliver them from Rome’s oppression. But they forsook Him when He talked to them about their spiritual need to be saved from sin (John 1:29; 6:66). They thought that their relationship to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob automatically entitled them to enter Christ’s kingdom on earth (Matthew 5:20; John 8:33). They didn’t see themselves as sinners in need of a Savior from the penalty and power of sin.

All The Rest Of Us. We’re all sinners by birth, and sinners by choice (Psalm 51:5; 1 John 1:8). We all start our physical life as children of the devil (John 8:44; 1 John 3:9, 10). This is why Jesus told Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews, that he needed to born again from above (John 3:3 ff). We all have a sinful nature that was passed down to us from our first parents, Adam and Eve (Romans 5:12). This sinful nature takes what is good and pure and turns it into that which is unclean and vile (Galatians 5:19-21). Even though a true Christian receives a new nature from above at the time of his/her salvation (2 Peter 1:4), we don’t lose our sin nature until we die or are raptured (1 John 1:8; Romans 7:15-25; 8:23; 1 John 3:2). The devil wants us to believe that we can save ourselves by our good works (Humanism), or by our faith plus our good works (Man’s Religions). Both things are a big lie (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5; John 8:44). So is John Lennon’s song “Imagine” which is leading many people to hell to suffer forever. Jesus talked about a real heaven and a real hell to which people go. If they’re not real, then Jesus is a liar and unworthy of our trust (John 14:6).

God. Thankfully God offered to us sinners a way to escape so we wouldn’t have to spend eternity in the lake of fire with the devil and his angels/demons (Matthew 25:30, 41, 46). God the Father did this by giving/sending to us His only begotten Son, who came into this world to die as a Substitute for our sins…and rise again bodily on the third day (John 3:16; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). The Lord Jesus Christ is the only One who can save us from hell and take us to heaven someday (John 14:6; Acts 4:12). Is your faith and trust resting in Him alone to save you? If not, why receive the gift of eternal life today (John 1:12; 3:16, 18, 36)?

Help. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2;2, 15; 3:16, 17). Not only do we want you to know for sure that you’re saved, we also want to help you grow spiritually (2 Peter 3:18, and then serve God and others effectively (1 Peter :410). You can reach us through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If this has helped you, please let us know how it has and then SHARE it with others.

Hopeless. Helpless. This is how many people in our world feel today. They don’t know for sure how mankind got here on earth and where we will go when we die. They fear death because they don’t know what is on the other side of it. Some dismiss heaven and hell from their thinking.

Class. Recently I have been teaching a class about “The Story Of Hope.” It is designed to help Christians lead lost people, who feel hopeless and helpless, to Christ so they can be saved (See John 1:41; 3:16; Acts 8:26 ff). We want to bring people out of darkness and into the light (Colossians 1:13;1 Peter 2:9). The future is as bright as the promises of God for true Christians (John 14:1-3; Psalm 16:11). But it isn’t bright for unbelievers who die without the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior (Matthew 25:30, 41, 46; Jude 1:13). God cannot and will not lie to us (Titus 1:2; John 14:6; 17:17). But we must know the promises and claim them for ourselves (Hebrews 4:2).

My Method. When I meet people in the market place, on a plane, or perhaps at the gym, I like to “break the ice” and begin a conversation with them by trying to find something in common with them. Many people are willing to talk about their work, their family, or their background. I let them talk. Then, if I can, I might share with them the story of our son, Bill’s death [1] to point out how fragile life is (James 4:14; Proverbs 27:1). Or I might tell them something about myself. I want to try to bring the conversation around to spiritual things. I usually say, “May I ask you something?”

Three Questions

Sure? Are you absolutely sure that you will go to heaven the moment you die?” The usual answer I get is, “I think/hope I will.” I ask, “Would you like to know for sure that you’ll go to heaven the moment you die?” Before I show them how this is possible, I like to ask them another question.

Why? “Why should God let you into His heaven?” The usual answer is, “I try my best to do what is right.” I ask, “How good do you think you have to be to get into heaven?” (This puzzles them.) If the person has a good answer to this question and believes that he/she is saved, I like to ask another question.

Lose? “If you believe that you are saved, is there anything you could do or fail to do that would cause you to lose your salvation? If so, what would it be?” (I like to ask this because some people, who are saved, lack assurance of their salvation. If I can, and if time permits, I like to proceed with the “Bad News & Good News.” Otherwise, I like to give them a clear Gospel tract or something I’ve written for them to take and read later.)

Bad News / Good News

Death. We’ve all sinned – acted lawlessly (Romans 3:23; 1 John 3:4). All of us deserve to die physically and be eternally separated from God in the lake of fire (Romans 6:23; Matthew 7:21-23; 25:30, 41, 46; Revelation 21:8).

Resurrection. But Christ died for our sins and rose again bodily on the third day. He can save anyone who puts his/her faith and trust in Him alone for his/her salvation (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Acts 16:31).

Only One Condition

Believe. If a person seems to be interested, I like to ask him/her, “Are you willing to place your faith in Christ alone to save you?” (Acts 16:31; Ephesians 2:8, 9). I point out that it’s not enough for you to know and believe the facts of the Gospel. You must transfer your faith from yourself and your good works over to Christ alone to save us. I ask, “Are you willing to do this right now?” (2 Corinthians 6:2; Proverbs 27:1). If he/she is willing to do this, I encourage them to tell God. I let him/her know that praying doesn’t save us. But it’s our way of letting God know of our decision to trust in Christ alone to save us. Here is a suggested prayer: “Dear God, I know I’m a sinner and that I can’t save myself. I believe that Christ died for my sins…and rose again bodily from the dead on the third day. I’m trusting in Him alone to save me. Thank You for the assurance that will come to me when I believe your promises to save me.” (Here are some promises that provide assurance of salvation for believers: John 3:16, 18, 36; 5:24; Romans 8:16; 1 John 5:13).

False Conditions. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and be baptized, join the church, give money, confess every sin you’ve ever committed, promise never to sin again, make Jesus the Lord and Master of your life, keep the sacraments, and/or do other good works. Good works don’t save anyone (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). They provide evidence of our faith to other people (James 2:18-20).

Formulas

The Right Formula. Grace + Faith = Salvation + Works

The Wrong Formula. Grace + Faith + Works = Salvation

Security & Assurance

When someone truly believes on the Lord Jesus Christ alone, through the message of the Gospel, he/she is saved instantly and is secure “in Christ” forever (John 10:28, 29; Ephesians 4:30). However, a true believer may not always feel like he/she is saved after sinning. The devil/demons like to put doubts into our minds when we sin (act lawlessly) or when we have unanswered questions.

Confession

When we sin, as Christians, we need to confess them (name them and be specific) to God and then claim His promise to forgive us (1 John 1:9). Then we need to learn how not to keep repeating the same sins (1 Corinthians 10:12, 13). We have three spiritual enemies that tempt us: the devil, the present world system, and our own sin nature.

Help. We’re here to glorify God by making Him known to others. We want to help you make sure of your salvation. Once saved, we want to help you grow spiritually (2 Peter 3:18) and help you identify the sources from which your temptations come, and to show you what you need to do so you don’t keep on sinning and grieving God (1 John 2:1; Ephesians 4:30). Perpetual sin, in the life of a Christian, could lead to a premature, physical death (James 5:19; 1 John 5:16; 1 Corinthians 11:30). Contact us through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If this has helped you, please SHARE it with others.

[1] “The Death Of Our Son” https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2016/04/16/the-death-of-our-son-2/

Links

Bad News & Good News” https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/the-bad-news-the-good-news/

Do We Really Know The Gospel” https://www.faith.edu/1993/02/do-we-really-know-the-gospel/

“The Clear Gospel” http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/English/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

“[Our] expectations can be high or low, reasonable or unreasonable, good or bad. The Bible speaks of expectations of redemption (Romans 8:19), expectations of judgment (Hebrews 10:27), delayed expectations (Proverbs 13:12a), realized expectations (Proverbs 13:12b), and unrealized expectations (Proverbs 11:7). Jesus told us to expect His return—although the timing of His return is beyond our knowing: “Be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him” (Luke 12:40). [1]

Dreams. Most, if not all of us, have or have had dreams and expectations in life. We want to be “successful.” But how is “success” measured and by whose standard? [2] We also have expectations of our spouses. We want them to conduct themselves in certain ways; we also set rules that we expect our children to keep. When these expectations are not met, we get disappointed in them and take measures to correct their behavior. Nagging [3] and yelling are often used to manipulate others.

Legalists. Do you have high expectations of other people? Are you tying to get them to live by your legalistic, unbiblical rules that are often unrealistic? This is what the Pharisees of Christ’s day did (Matthew 23:4). Consider Christ’s invitation to the oppressed (Matthew 11:28-30). When others don’t meet our expectations we sometimes turn on them and/or seek to harm them. Where in Scripture does the Christian find his/her rules for living today? (See our Dispensations Chart on our website.) Upon whose strength do we need to depend to carry them out – our own or God’s (Philippians 4:13)?

Messiah. The Old Testament Jews had high expectations of their promised Messiah. They were looking for a conquering King, not a suffering servant (Isaiah 9:6, 7; 53:1 ff). They wanted Him to deliver them from Roman oppression. They didn’t think that they needed Someone to deliver them from their sins and the consequences of them (Romans 6:23; 10:3). When Jesus rode into Jerusalem on the back of a little donkey, many cried out “Hosanna to the Son of David! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’ Hosanna in the highest!” (Matthew 21:9). But when He didn’t overthrow Rome, who was their enemy, and allowed Himself to be arrested by His enemies (John 18:12 ff), they turned on Him and cried out for Him to be crucified (John 19:6).

Goals. While most of us can do far more than we think we can, sometimes we set unrealistic goals and/or expectations in life and depend on ourselves rather than on God to fulfill those desires (Proverbs 3:5, 6; James 4:13-17). Self reliance and acting independently of God leads to failure in His sight. It led to Lucifer’s (Satan’s) fall (Isaiah 14:12-15). He tempts us to act this way today (Luke 22:31-34).

Trust. Now that I have been saved by grace through faith in Christ, I (my new nature) want to trust in the Lord with all my heart (mind, will, and emotions), and not lean on my own understanding. I want to acknowledge Him and depend on Him to make wise decisions that will affect not only me but others (Proverbs 3:5, 6). [4] As a child of God I can expect Him to give me wisdom when I humbly ask Him for it and when I’m not double minded (James 1:5-8; See 1 John 2:15-17).

Formula. I want to pursue a simple formula that I have often shared with my children. It is expressed in these words from the Scriptures. “He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require [expect] of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8). These are things that don’t come naturally to us.

Goodness (happiness) will be the result of my doing what is just (right). It is not doing what is right in my own eyes, but what is right in God’s eyes (Judges 21:25). [5] He makes the rules; I need to obey them if I want to show my love and appreciation for Him (John 14:15), and if I want to be well pleasing to Him (2 Corinthians 5:9). I don’t want to grieve God (Ephesians 4:30).

Mercy. God has been very merciful to me when I’ve suffered as a result of my own sins or the sins of others. So I want to be merciful and compassionate to those who are suffering (Ephesians 4:32; 2 Corinthians 1:3, 4). Where would you and I be without God’s mercies that are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22, 23). Great is His faithfulness to us. Let us be faithful to Him and to others (1 Corinthians 4:2; 15:58).

Humility. I also want to walk humbly before God (James 4:10). He hates it when we walk in pride (Proverbs 6:16, 17; 16:18). Everything you and I have has come from His gracious hand (1 Corinthians 4:7). I want to be like Christ by displaying the “Fruit of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22, 23; Philippians 2:5-11). I want others to see Christ living His life through my life (Galatians 2:20; 4:19).

Forgiveness. When we place our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ alone, who died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, God judicially forgives us (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Ephesians 1:7; Romans 8:1). We become children of God when we believe on Christ as our personal Savior through the message of the Gospel (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Romans 1:16 17). We all start out life as children of the devil (John 8:44; 1 John 3:9, 10). If we don’t ever get out of his family and enter into God’s family by simple faith, and not by our works (Ephesians 2:8 9; Titus 3:5), we will spend eternity with the devil and his angels in the lake of fire (Matthew 25:41, 46; Colossians 1:13, 14). Contrary to what some cults and religions teach, the wicked dead are not annihilated or reincarnated.

Poem/Song. It’s “Not what I wish to be nor where I wish to go / For who am I that I should choose my way / The Lord shall choose for me tis better far I know / So let Him bid me go or stay.” – C. Austin Miles. Is the Lord Jesus Christ your Shepherd and Savior? If not, why not place your faith and trust in Him alone today?

Help. If you aren’t sure of your eternal destiny, or if you need spiritual help, you may contact us through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16. 17). If this has helped you, please SHARE it with others.

[1] Expectations, https://www.gotquestions.org/Bible-expectations.html

[2] Charles Stanley, Success God’s Way, https://www.amazon.com/Success-Gods-Way-Achieving-Contentment/dp/0785265902/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=success+charles+stanley&qid=1583909509&sr=8-1

[3] How To Stop Nagging And Start Teaching https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hrPJrG2aHM

Nagging, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17L7eS6pt_A

[4] For the struggle between the Christian’s new nature and the old nature read Romans 7:15-25.

[5] Other Helpful Articles:

When Doing Right Is Wrong. https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2017/09/06/when-doing-right-is-wrong/

Wrong? It Feels So Right, https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2013/06/26/wrong-it-feels-so-right/

Expectations In Life https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/06/27/expectations-in-life/