DIG For Friday the 27th of June……what a wonderful description of Jesus…..John 1 v 1 and 2

I received a wonderful gift from a friend at work today, a stone with John 1 v 1 written on it along with some wonderful artwork.

It is a verse of course that we are all aware of and can probably all quote, but I’ve been thinking about it more since receiving the gift.

It is universally accepted that the start of the gospel of John is talking about Jesus and it confirms His divinity.

Jesus was born as a man, yet He was and is also God.

This verse tells us that He was with God and He was God, a very clear indication of His status as God.

Verse 2 confirms this again saying that He was with God in the beginning.

Jesus was not created; He was pre-existent before time began (Colossians 1 v 17).

Many theologians today say that Jesus was not God and that the Bible does not claim this either.

That is really nonsense if you rightly divide a number of passages in Scripture, but John 1 v 1 and 2 is really enough!

In this verse we could remove Word and replace with Jesus; it would then say “In the beginning was Jesus, and Jesus was with God, and Jesus was God”.

That is very clear!

Never let anyone tell you that Jesus was only a man, He was so much more than that.

He was made flesh and did come and dwell among us, but He came as a man and as God at the same time.

Father God loved us so much that God, in the form of Jesus, came and lived among men; that should make us all feel very special.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord for Jesus, thank you that He came to bring me an abundant life and pay for all my sin”.

John 1 v 1 and 2…..In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was God and the Word was with God. The same was in the beginning with God

DIG for Thursday the 26th of June……submit and resist; but with and against what…..James 4 v 7

James is a wonderful wee epistle full of great advice on how to live the Christian life, and this verse about resisting and submitting is one of my favourites.

It is a simple verse; you submit to God and you resist the devil.

We are to submit to God and the things of and from Him, and at the same time resist the devil and the things of and from him.

The trouble however is that many believers are confused about what is from God and what is from the devil.

Let me give you a simple piece of advice about this; if something is good it is from God and if it is not good it is from the devil.

Only good things ever came from Father God and He never changes, so He can only send good things now (James 1 v 17).

Jesus came to only bring good things, in order to bring us into a life of abundance (John 10 v 10).

Jesus came to destroy the works the enemy (1 John 3 v 8).

As Jesus was God in flesh we can look at what He did in order to help us to know what to submit to and what to resist.

For example, in the Gospels we see Jesus healing and setting people free from illness, pain and disease so from this we can know that we should resist illness, pain and disease.

Jesus also came to bring us life in abundance and became poor so that we might be rich (John 10 v 10 and 2 Corinthians 8 v 9).

So we should also resist poverty and lack.

To resist means to stand against and oppose, or fight I would prefer to say.

So we should be fighting against illness and poverty, two things that religion tells us that God uses to make us “better” Christians.

God does not use poverty or illness, they are not good and they are not from Him, and we should not submit to these; we should resist and fight against these lies of the devil.

Illness and poverty is not meant to be in the life of the believer, they are from the devil and accepted by religion.

Above all things God wants you to live in health and abundance, above all else the enemy does not want you to live n this way (3 John 2).

Believe that God wants the best for you, and believe that He has provided for this through the finished work of Jesus Christ; do not be conned into pain and poverty by religion and by the devil.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that above all else you want me to live a life of health and prosperity”.

James 4 v 7…..Submit yourself therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you

DIG for Wednesday the 25th of June…..change your thinking by changing what you say…..Romans 12 v 2

So we have just had another midweek Bible study and Zan, once again, came along with a lovely summary of what we had been studying, so once again I’ve copied her comments for my DIG.

I love it as a pastor and teacher when someone “gets” what we as a leadership team have been teaching, so thanks for “getting it” Zan and providing us with this great summary…….

Whatever challenges we are facing we can address the problem by speaking out the Word and calling into being those things that are not (Romans 4 v 17).

Jesus has provided everything we need for successful and abundant lives through His life and death (John 10 v 10 and 2 Peter 1 v 3), and it is now up to us to learn what it is He has actually done so that we can declare those particular truths over every area of our needs and the needs of our family and friends.

As we speak out and declare these truths and believe what we are saying, our words are like a sword cutting through all the rubbish and baggage we are carrying that is holding us back from walking in the newness of life that Jesus came to make for us.

Repeatedly declaring God’s Word over our lives brings supernatural change into our way of thinking which in turn causes us to change for the better (Romans 12 v 2).

This is a wonderful summary explaining the power of our words and the power of our thoughts; change these and we will change our lives.

That is powerful and will make us powerful if we really grasp this truth!

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that you have given me the capacity and ability to change my life for the better”.

Romans 12 v 2…..And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God

DIG for Tuesday the 24th of June…..forgiveness; what about Matthew 6 v 14 and 15…..Matthew 6 v 14 and 15

So Vic, here is another passage that clearly shows that your teaching about unconditional, complete and absolute forgiveness is wrong; yes, I’ve heard this before.

In this passage Jesus seems to go against the verses in the new covenant that speak of forgiveness through His blood.

It only seems that they go against these verses, as He does not; a rather important event happened between Jesus speaking here and the writers of the New Testament getting their truths onto paper.

Jesus shed His blood on the cross for our forgiveness and died as the propitiation for our sin.

Matthew 6 v 14 and 15 is under the old covenant while we live under the new covenant.

These verses are not meant to be taken literally especially when rightly divided along with verses like Ephesians 1 v 7, Colossians 1 v 14 and Hebrews 9 v 22.

In his section of Scripture Jesus is “raising the bar” of the law, saying if you want to earn your own salvation I am just making things even harder for you.

He is saying if you want to earn your own righteousness and salvation you need to forgive every single person who has done anything against you, you must not think a single evil thought about anyone and you must not have a single lustful thought.

He just made an impossible task (fulfilling the law) even more impossible by raising the standard.

Thinking about murder was now murder and thinking about adultery was now adultery.

Can you see how Jesus is using these impossible tasks to raise the bar of the law?

He does not literally mean you have to forgive to be forgiven, He is saying you’ll never be able to do this on your own; you need a Saviour!

He said in Matthew 5 v 20 that getting into heaven with your own righteousness and righteous acts is impossible, and then goes on to use various examples to highlight this.

This passage about forgiveness is one such example.

My friend, you live under the new covenant and have absolute, unconditional and complete forgiveness from God for all you have done, all you are doing and all you will ever do.

Now am I saying that you do not need to forgive people? No, that is essential, but essential for your own well being rather than for your own forgiveness from God.

Unforgiveness is not good for you; I highly recommend that you forgive others.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I have already complete and full forgiveness from God through the shed blood of Jesus”.

Matthew 6 v 14 and 15…..For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses

DIG for Monday the 23rd of June…..forgiveness; but what about 1 John 1 v 9……1 John 1 v 9

So if we have been forgiven already what does 1 John 1 v 9 mean?

This is a question that I have been asked many times as I preach complete, absolute and unconditional forgiveness.

Even though there are many different new covenant scriptures telling us that we have already been forgiven, this single verse keeps getting thrown at me along with the doctrine that it props up.

This verse talks about being cleansed from all unrighteousness; but I know that I was made righteous the second I was born again (2 Corinthians 5 v 21 and Ephesians 4 v 24).

I personally believe that this verse is talking to unbelievers about the born again experience so is not actually for us as Christians.

But let us imagine for a few seconds that this is for us, what does the original Greek mean in the verse.

It tells us to confess, this is the Greek word “homologeo” and means to assent or agree; it does not mean to beg, plead or ask.

This is talking about agreeing about our sin, agreeing with God that we can do nothing about our sin and therefore need a Saviour; it has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with begging and pleading for God to forgive us.

That is why I say it is about the born again experience with the writer trying to explain this process to a group of unbelievers (I actually think that the people involved are Gnostics).

The Word says that there is no remission or pardon (or forgiveness) for sin without the shedding of blood (Hebrews 9 v 22).

You cannot simply “confess” your sin to be forgiven.

You cannot shed your own blood for forgiveness but you do not have to as Jesus has done this already and you are now forgiven; forgiven without asking, begging or pleading.

Let me ask you a question; did the thief on the cross ask for forgiveness?

No he did not, he entered into eternal life and a state of righteousness and forgiveness simply because he trusted in Jesus as his Lord and Saviour.

No my friends, 1 John 1 v 9 as it is traditionally interpreted by religion and legalism is not for you and not for me!

You have already been forgiven through the shed blood of Jesus and in the eyes of God you have absolute, complete and unconditional forgiveness RIGHT NOW!

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I am living in a state of forgiveness right now because of the shed blood of Jesus”.

1 John 1 v 9…..If we confess our sin, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness

DIG for Sunday the 22nd of June…..forgiveness, another axiom you must believe…..Colossians 1 v 14

I wrote yesterday about how believing that you have been made righteous will change the way you live your life.

The same is true for the truth about forgiveness.

Nunsy says that it is was the revelation of forgiveness, of her forgiveness from God that changed her life.

I can also testify to this truth.

Religion will tell you however that you need to keep asking for forgiveness, keep confessing your sin for forgiveness; but this is nonsense.

The Word clearly tells us that we were forgiven at the cross; we were forgiven through the blood of Jesus Christ (Colossians 1 v 14 and Ephesians 1 v 7).

We are forgiven through the grace of God and not because of anything we do or have done (Ephesians 1 v 7).

You are forgiven right now because of the finished work of Jesus Christ, the Word says you were redeemed (or had a ransom paid on your behalf) through His blood.

We are forgiven because Jesus has paid for all our sin (sin from the past, present and future) indeed He has paid for the sin of the whole world (1 John 2 v 2).

Believing that sin has been paid for and that you are living in forgiveness will help you live a life free from sin, not a life free to sin.

Telling a believer that saying you are forgiven will give you a licence to sin is a lie of religion, it is not what I see in my church anyway!

It is something that we are accused of from people in religion and legalism, but it is a lie.

The revelation of how forgiven you are will free you to move into a life of less sin, that is the truth!

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I have been already been forgiven through the shed blood of Jesus Christ”.

Colossians 1 v 14…..In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins

DIG for Saturday the 21st of June…..believe you are righteous, it will make a big difference…..1 Corinthians 15 v 34

What we believe will affect how we live; remember as a man thinketh so is he (Proverbs 23 v 7).

We saw yesterday how important it was for Abraham what he believed and the same is true for us.

One of the most important things that we can believe is that we have been made righteous.

Too many Christians are trying to become more righteous, trying to achieve acceptance from God through their own works.

This is not required, because as soon as we have faith in Jesus and His finished work we are MADE righteous (2 Corinthians 5 v 21).

As soon as we believe we have right standing with God and full acceptance from Him (Ephesians 1 v 6).

This is s truth that if we believe will have a real impact on our lives.

Take a look at 1 Corinthians 15 v 34; this says that if we awake (become aware or realise) to righteousness we will sin not.

This is saying that the way to have less sin in your life, is to realise that you are righteous!

Simply by believing and understanding that you have been made righteous already will have a huge positive impact on your life.

Understanding this truth will see less sin and more holy actions in your life.

If you are serious about your faith then I am sure you will want to live a more holy life with less sin.

Believe you are righteous and this will happen!

The church (in the main) and religion has really got it wrong in this area; they say live holy and have less sin and you will become more righteous and gain acceptance from God.

They have got it the wrong way round according to 1 Corinthians 15 v 34.

Your actions are a by-product of what you believe and what you are, not the other way round!

Start believing that you are already righteous as a gift of grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ and see your actions and your life change.

That is a promise as that is what the Word of God says!

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that because of my faith in Jesus I have been made righteous”.

1 Corinthians 15 v 34…..Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame

DIG for Friday the 20th of June…..with faith, and no unbelief, anything is possible…..Romans 4 v 19 to 21

Nunsy will be accusing me of stealing her revelations again, but I have to share some Scriptures she was speaking on today!

Paul writes about the faith of Abraham and his lack of unbelief in Romans 4.

Remember that God had told Abraham that he would be a father of nations, yet he had no children, and he was getting on a bit, as was his wife.

In the natural there was no way on this earth that Abraham could become a father of nations.

The facts and circumstances said that Abraham would not even be a father of one, let alone a father of nations.

In the natural Abraham was past the age of fathering a child, and his wife was also past it; indeed the Word says her womb was dead (Romans 4 v 19).

Yet Abraham “staggered not at the promise of God”; this means he did not doubt or waver.

He believed what God said, no matter what circumstances he say.

He believed the spiritual rather than the physical.

He had no unbelief with regards to what God had said and promised.

The Word goes on to say that he was “fully persuaded”, and he achieved what God had said (Romans 4 v 21).

Because of his faith and his complete lack of unbelief we see the promise of God coming to pass.

Abraham and Sarah had a child and he became the father of a nation.

This is an awesome example of a man believing the truth (or what God said) instead of facts (what the world says).

This is a man believing and trusting God instead of believing what he sees and hears from the world, from his body and from the physical realm.

This is an example that we can follow.

If we feel pain we can believe that God has healed us through the finished work of Jesus Christ and push on into our healing.

If we see a lack in our finances we can believe that God wants us to live in prosperity and that Jesus came to give us an abundant life and push on into our prosperity (3 John 2 and John 10 v 10).

Faith coupled with a lack of unbelief saw Abraham receive what God had promised him and the same will work for us.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that through the finished work of Jesus Christ I have already been healed and made prosperous, I will push on into these today”.

Romans 4 v 19 to 21…..And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah’s womb: He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded, that what he had promised, he was able to perform

DIG for Thursday the 19th of June…..God is not the author of trials and temptations…..James 1 v 13 and 14

It gets me so angry when I hear other pastors, ministers or teachers saying that God is the author of our trials and temptations.

This is religious nonsense and a lie from the devil.

As we saw yesterday trials and temptations are sent against us to try and steal our faith, why would God want to do this?

I’ve often heard people say God sends illness and disease (one form of trial and temptation) to help us on our Christian walk, and often quote Paul’s thorn in the flesh for this (I will leave the thorn in the flesh for another day).

In the Gospels we see Jesus healing people of physical illness and disease on a regular basis, indeed on a number of times He healed everyone that came to Him.

Further into the Word we see that Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil (1 John 3 v 8).

Therefore we can deduce (remember my degree is in Mathematics!) that illness and disease (one of the things that Jesus destroyed) is from the devil.

Can you see the simple logic involved in this argument?

Let us assume for one moment that God was the agent of sickness and disease, and sent this form of trial and temptation to teach people a lesson.

By healing the leper (in Matthew 8) Jesus would be going against the will and plan of God, unless of course the leper had indeed learned His lesson.

But Jesus simply healed him; He did not first check the level of his pride or humility (two things I always hear that God is trying to sort out with trials and temptations).

Jesus was not going against the will of God by healing people, He was actually following His Father’s will in this work.

God wants above all things for us to live in health and abundance (3 John 2) so why would He send illness against us; why would He send this trial and temptation?

The simple answer is that of course He would not and does not; the doctrine that says God will send trials and temptations against us is a lie straight from the pit of hell.

Do not let any man tell you illness or disease is from God in order to make you a better person.

Run from that doctrine of lies and believe the truth that God wants you to live in health.

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that you are not the author of trials and temptations”.

James 1 v 13 and 14…..Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and is enticed

DIG for Wednesday the 18th of June…..trials and temptations are to steal your faith not to give you faith…..James 1 v 2 and 3

I’ve been told as a believer that when trials and temptations came along this was to increase my faith; I now know that this was nonsense.

I always felt that this was not right, but as I was a “lazy” Christian I never checked the Word out for myself.

Now that I know the Word better, and understand more truth, I can recognise the nonsense when it comes my way.

James is a book that talks a fair bit about trials and temptations, indeed right from the start we read about them.

I’ll take another DIG to look at the authors of trials and temptations, but tonight I will focus on their purpose.

They are here to try your faith (James 1 v 3).

They are not to build up your faith and make you stronger; that is a lie of religion and a lie of the enemy.

Too many believers embrace trials and temptations thinking they are sent to humble them, improve them and make them better Christians.

Yes, if you fight them and resist them they will “improve” you, but you have to fight and resist instead of submitting.

Soldiers become better soldiers once in the field where they fight the enemy and put their training into practice, but it is not their leaders sending the attacks in order to make them better.

They become better soldiers, develop and improve as they fight and resist the enemy.

I watched a series on DVD recently called Band of Brothers, and those men became stronger and better soldiers as they fought against the enemy.

If you believe that God has sent a trial or temptation into your life you would be mad to fight it, you should submit to it and learn what God wants you to learn; if you truly believe that God made you ill for a purpose I would question why you are going to the doctor?

No my friend, we will see later that God is not the agent of trials and temptations, and that they are not sent to build up our faith, they are sent to try or steal our faith; how else can you interpret James 1 v 3?

Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord that I know trials and temptations are not to build up my faith but are here to try or steal that faith”.

James 1 v 2 and 3…..My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience