Supernatural Joy

Greetings!

First off, from time to time I add ‘tidbits’ to the Post “Christian Tidbits”. Recently, I added Number 15, which follows:

“It is estimated that the number of living species on our planet ranges from 3 million to 100 million. Consider the fact that God through Christ Jesus had to DESIGN and create an INDIVIDUAL and UNIQUE ‘behavioral computer chip’ for EACH species!! They ALL function differently and obviously need their own distinct behavioral pattern programmed into their personal being in order to live and survive, based on the way each is created. Simply amazing!!”

Now, today’s Post is an excerpt from the one I wrote back in September entitled “God Has Your Back….Sorta!”. I am using this as a separate Post because the event described here from Acts 16:19-25 comes to my mind frequently and serves both as great encouragement as well as a reminder of just how far beyond human comprehension God’s ways are.

By making it a Post of its own, I hope that more of you will more readily see it and benefit from it as I have and do. Here goes:

In addition to such verses as James 1:2 and Colossians 1:11, consider the example of Paul and Silas at Philippi (Acts 16:19-25). They were “severely flogged” , put in the “inner cell” (which was probably the nastiest) and their feet put in stocks. And, they had to have been EXTREMELY SORE and still bloodied (v. 33). YET, at around midnight THEY SANG HYMNS TO GOD! WHOA!!….either they had to have been on some heavy drugs or funny mushrooms….OR, they were OVERJOYED that they had suffered for Christ’s sake. The Holy Spirit enables us to act and react this way.” (End of excerpt)

The ability for us to experience this ‘supernatural joy’ which goes beyond human understanding  is further illustrated in 2 Corinthians 6:10. Here, Paul says that he experiences being humanly “sorrowful”, and yet AT THE SAME TIME, he was “always rejoicing”! (New American Standard).

He ventures further to say in 2 Corinthians 7:4: “I am SUPEREXCEEDING IN JOY (emphasis mine) in all our affliction”! (Concordant Literal NT) WOW!! Now, this is truly ‘supernatural joy’!

UPDATE: The following is from an excerpt from Oswald Chambers’ “My Utmost For His Highest” and all of his entries can be obtained for FREE by going to the Category by the same name as the title of his book. Emphasis will be mine throughout:

” The underlying foundation of the Christian faith is the undeserved, LIMITLESS miracle of the love of God that was exhibited on the Cross of Calvary; a love that is not earned and can never be. Paul said this is the reason that “in ALL these things we are more than conquerors.” We are SUPER-VICTORS  with a JOY that comes from experiencing the very things which look as if they are going to overwhelm us.

Our Glorious New Bodies

Hey, there….I love the Weymouth New Testament rendering of Philippians 3:21:

“who, in the exercise of the power which He has even to subject all things to Himself, will transform this body of our humiliation until it resembles His own glorious body.”

Holman’s Christian Standard Bible is similar:

“He will transform the body of our humble condition into the likeness of His glorious body, by the power that enables Him to subject everything to Himself.”

Colossians 3:4 also confirms that we will appear in glory when Christ returns for us.

Further in Holman’s in 2 Thessalonians 2:14 (emphasis mine):

“He called you to this through our gospel, so THAT YOU MIGHT OBTAIN THE GLORY OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST”.

WOW!!! At that time, we will take on a glorious body that defies the imagination….one JUST LIKE Christ Jesus Himself AND to literally obtain the glory of the Lord Himself! Take a peek at Revelations 1:13-15 to maybe get an idea of what our bodies will resemble.

Let’s continue on to 1 Corinthians 15:40-53 to elaborate further on our beautiful-beyond-words, magnificent future bodies. The Concordant Literal New Testament describes it best:

1. It will be of a ‘celestial’ fabric or nature rather than the decaying ‘terrestrial’, ‘soilish’ and of a ‘flesh’ nature we now possess. Christ is called the “Celestial One” and we are to be just like Him. Verses: 41,48,49

2. It will obviously be ‘incorruptible’. Verses: 42,50,52,53

3. It will obviously possess ‘immortality’. Verse: 53

4. It will be a body of ‘power’, just as Christ Jesus has. Verse: 43 (and Philippians 3:21)

5. It will be a  (Holy) ‘spiritual’ DOMINATED body as opposed to our present bodies being dominated by a (humanly) ‘soulish’ nature. Verse: 44,45,46

[All believers have at the present received the “firstfruits of the Spirit”, or a down payment, so to speak (Romans 8:23); whereas, only Jesus received the Holy Spirit ‘without measure’ as a human (John 3:32-34). At the resurrection, all believers will receive the FULL MEASURE of the Holy Spirit as we take on the very GLORY of Christ Jesus, Himself (2 Thessalonians 2:14)….thus, rendering us incapable of sinning. This is the “crown of righteousness” referred to by Paul in 2 Timothy 4:8. (Please reference the Post “Crown Of Righteousness”)]

WHAT A GLORIOUS EXPECTATION!!!….made possible by the sacrifice of our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus.

Later, in Christ,

Fred

The Greatest Love Story Ever Told

“for Him Who did not know sin, He did make sin in our behalf, that we may become the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21….Modern Young’s Literal Translation)

“7.but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross”. (Philippines 2:7-8….NAS)

The Creator of the universe and of all living beings (John 1:3), because of Divine Love, was willingly nailed to a tree He had created by the creation He had created, after beaten beyond recognition by His creation (Isaiah 52:14; 50:6), so that even His crucifiers would come to experience unimaginable glory and joy along with the ENTIRE creation at the end of the ages….along with Him….when God will be ALL in ALL! (1 Corinthians 15:28….New American Standard)

I cannot think of a Greater Love Story!

Please reference the Categories “All Creation Will Be Saved” and God’s Plan Of The Ages”

Later, in Christ,

Fred

The Ruler Of This World

Hey, there.

Although there is some limited human goodness and decency exhibited by some, we nevertheless live in a sick, sick and sad, sad world. Actually, it is a REFLECTION OF WHO RULES OUR WORLD!!. Jesus called living in this world as being “darkness” (John 1:5), as did Paul in Ephesians 5:8; 6:12. Paul went on to call this time we live in as “this present evil age” (Young’s).

Satan is definitely the ruler of this world….yes, WORLD….as in ALL nations (John 12:31, 14:30 and 16:11….Young’s). He is also called “the god of this age” (2 Corinthians 4:4….Young’s, Rotherham’s). This is verified in Matthew 4:1, 8-10 where he offered Jesus ALL the kingdoms of the world and Christ did not dispute his authority to do so.

Never blame God and Christ Jesus directly for ANY and ALL the tremendously terrible and abominable events, conditions and individual suffering we so readily and constantly see about us….rather, blame Satan and his sidekicks (as well as those individuals with evil stored in their hearts, of course) for it ALL.

Also, in Ephesians 2:2, Satan is described further: “in which you formally walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience” (New American Standard).

The United States is no exception to Satan’s rulership. I am a natural born citizen and Marine veteran who appreciates and  enjoys our country’s wonderful freedoms, prosperity and opportunities BUT there is no denying we are not a nation of God in reality…. in vocabulary only. For instance, God would NEVER endorse NOR embrace a nation that specifically excludes Him from their government by its constitution (as we do), much less allows freedom of religion (as we do).

From a human standpoint, allowing freedom of “religion” sounds very appealing, fair and noble; HOWEVER, guess how many “religions” God allowed when dealing with Israel in the Old Testament and is going to allow in the Millennium, much less during the “new heaven and new earth”….you guessed it: one (1)….ONLY the worship of Him and Christ Jesus.

For now, we Christians are “strangers and sojourners upon the earth” (Hebrews 11:13….Young’s) and “temporary residents” (1 Peter1:17, 1 Peter 2:11….Holman’s)  in a FOREIGN LAND  and it is NOT our duty NOR our  chore to change any of the ways of any of the nations of Satan’s world; but rather, to be subject to the authorities (Romans 13:1-5) while we are GUESTS here, and are to be setting an example by walking in the Light (1 John 1:7).

A final note on Satan. As the ruler of this world, he and his cohorts  have to receive God’s permission to do EVERYTHING (directly or indirectly), as clearly illustrated by the example of Job. And, sometimes, as with Job, there are limitations placed on the Adversary’s actions. As believers, rest assured that any assault by Satan on any of us in any way was conditionally authorized and approved by God FOR OUR EVENTUAL GOOD! And, as brought out in many other Posts here, as well for the EVENTUAL good and glory of the ENTIRE CREATION when He is “ALL in ALL….1 Corinthians 15:28!

God and Christ Jesus NEVER allow any evil or sin to occur that They will not be able to bring about a GLORIOUS GOOD from it….regardless of how this may not appear at the moment.

How fortunate and blessed we (all humans) are to have a God and Savior such as They are!!!

Until later,

Fred

Answered Prayer

Greetings….we have heard that if we have enough faith  we can have anything we want through prayer.  Well, who doesn’t remember these Words of our Lord:

“but even if to this mount ye may say, Be lifted up and be cast into the sea, it shall come to pass; 22. and all — as much as ye may ask in the prayer, believing, ye shall receive.”  (Matthew 21:21-22) (Young’s Literal Version)

But, wait a second! Didn’t Jesus pray 3 times that His crucifixion be taken away from Him? Didn’t Jesus have faith?…..well, of course. Didn’t Paul pray 3 times that his “thorn in the flesh” be taken away from him? Didn’t Paul have faith?…..well, of course.  And, of course, neither received their prayer request.

Fortunately, we have the whole New Testament so that we can clarify what is said in one place by what is said in another. This is called “rightly dividing the word” (2 Timothy 2:15…Young’s Literal Version), or, putting all truth in its proper place or perspective. One or two verses sometimes do not stand alone regarding a truth and they need to be understood in their proper context based on what is said elsewhere. This is the case here.

Regarding answered prayer, then, there is another verse in 1 John 5:14 (New American Standard Bible) which brings Matthew 21: 21-22 into balance : “This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything ACCORDING TO HIS WILL, He hears us.” (Emphasis mine). Also, have we in James 4:3: “you ask and do no receive because you ask amiss”.

Actually, Jesus acknowledges this also in Matthew 26:39 (New American Standard): “yet not as I will, BUT AS YOU WILL.” (Emphasis mine) Answered prayer always depends on whether it is according to God’s will and whether we do ask amiss.

Thank goodness God and Christ Jesus are there to pan out what we ask for from what we really need. Much of the time, we have no clue as to what we really need, and how blessed we are to have a Father and Savior who know our necessities to the nth degree and beyond.

So, if you don’t get what you want in prayer, even though you may have the faith, be thankful that your prayers were not answered AS YOU WANTED THEM TO….because God and Christ Jesus know best as to what we really NEED, and this in itself, is their answer to our prayer.

See you later, in Christ.

Fred

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