Matthew 23:9 “And do not call anyone on earth your father, for you have one Father, who is in heaven.”
When asked which is the greatest commandment God has given, Jesus said, “to love Him.” A person’s love for God is directly proportionate to their knowledge of Him. This is why knowing your heavenly Father is everything.
My motivation for what I do is my love for my Father. I want to honor Him. I want to glorify Him. I want to share His goodness. I want to share His love. What would it be like if everyone knew God as Father?
In the western church the orphan spirit outwardly professes God as Father, but the internal experience is in contradiction to that belief, looking to performance, praise of man, and other idols. Love is not something you get; it is something you receive, and you receive it from your Father in heaven.
When you see yourself as a son or daughter your behavior changes without receiving any rules. The power of God’s love is amazing.
The orphan heart and the heart of sonship
Christian discipleship homes
Man has three basic spiritual needs.
- Security – being loved and accepted
- Value – being valued; desired; we need to be wanted
- Purpose – A life of meaning, significance; if your life does not bring meaning to the lives of others, it is empty and grows tiresome.
Before I knew the love of God I tried to create value through purpose in order to gain security.
Before I knew the love of God I tried to create value (being something to someone), through purpose (my performance), in order to gain security (love and acceptance). Continue reading “We Need God, Then We Want God” »
Romans 7:4 “Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God.”
What does being “dead to the Law” mean to you?
Your salvation is a liberation from Law and unification with a living Person, Jesus Christ—who, according to Romans 6:9, will never die again. Which means your salvation is eternal and secure.
And the verse goes one step further and explains not only why we died to the Law—namely, to be joined to the living Christ—but also why we are joined to the living Christ—”in order that we might bear fruit for God.” This fruit is love. Continue reading “To Live Is Christ” »
Instead of striving to change your circumstances, let Christ change you through the circumstances you find yourself in. Instead of walking out of your current circumstances, simply walk with Christ in your present circumstances.
My flesh, in a vain search for peace, has vigorously pressed me to to change my outward circumstances; to find “happiness” by changing my outward identity, status, and circumstances. I have been on and off of this treadmill so much in my life I become weary just thinking about it. Everything was constantly in disarray because I was always trying to move from kingdom to kingdom.
One of the strongholds the Lord sets me free from is my obsession with searching for greener grass–relationships, possessions, achievement, wealth, status, reputation, and better circumstances to make me whole–it is Christ who makes my life whole. My entire life I have had a need to pursue “better” because I had false beliefs about myself, and along with “better,” came the prospect of inner peace. Continue reading “Growing In Christ” »
Are we called to judge others? No. And, Yes!
Matthew 7:1-2 “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.
Matthew 7:6 “Don’t waste what is holy on people who are unholy. Don’t throw your pearls to pigs! They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you.”
Matthew 7:20 “Yes, just as you can identify a tree by its fruit, so you can identify people by their actions.”
John 7:24 “Look beneath the surface so you can judge correctly.”
I want you to walk away from this message with three takeaways:
First, as sons of God, we no longer have a need to exalt ourselves by judging others. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love, and of sound mind.
Second, we are called to judge actions, not people. For in the same way I judge people, I will be judged, and with the measure I use, it will be measured to me. For whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.
Third, we are called to discern the actions of others for the purpose of ministering to them. There is a right way and a wrong way to judge. The right way is spirit-led and results in blessing. The wrong way is evil and divisive. What’s your motive? Continue reading “Judging Others: A Bitter Fruit?” »
In many ways, what the world calls self-esteem is pride. It is formed from one’s opinion about self-worth without regard for who God says we are. Who gave us the sovereignty to determine our value? Truly this right belongs to God alone—the Creator, the Author of life.
Colossians 1:15-16 “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.
Many describe pride as being over-confident. The outwardly arrogant nature of my pride leads to bragging, boasting, selfishness, and an overly-defensive personality. These attitudes are not caused by too much self-confidence but by a lack of knowing the agape love (steadfast love) of Father God. People walking in pride are constantly trying to prove themselves to themselves—and others—because they are filled with shame, desperate for acceptance and affirmation, and do not know love. Continue reading “Another Name For Low Self-esteem Is Pride” »
Trying to convey the need for repentance to non-believers is nearly impossible because most do not yet see a need for salvation. How can a man or woman understand the need to repent or the need for salvation unless they first understand the condition of the human heart? What does the Bible say about the human heart?
Genesis 6:5 says, “The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”
Matthew 15:19 says, “For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.”
Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.”
My heart is a fountain of wickedness. I am selfish, fragile, fickle; self-focused, self-centered, self-seeking, self-absorbed, self obsessed. Without the Spirit of Christ living inside me, there is a destructive force at work–the human heart. Continue reading “Are You A Good Person?” »
The New Man is impossible without knowing the love of God. This is not just something we understand in our mind, but something we experience in our heart–we must be born-again. The Holy Spirit is the power who perfects holiness in us and makes Christ a living reality in our lives. He does this by producing in us the fruit of self-control. He shows that there can be no mixture between darkness and light (evil and good).
He creates in us the desire to separate ourselves from the sinful world and to live in a way that is pleasing to God. Self-control for a Christian is really Spirit-control. That is what the apostle Paul was talking about in Romans 8: Continue reading “Putting On The New Man” »