Tuesday, March 29, 2016

                                          By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.
     Spring is a wonderful time of the year. It speaks of New Life springing forth! The old giving place to the new. It speaks of resurrection and that is why Easter is such a marvellous time for the Church!
   The Church must always be SPRINGING into action with fasting and prayer to reach many  more people for Christ, while the doors are still open.
  As conditions across the world deteriortate spiritually, militarily, economically and domestically, the CHURCH will get squeezed to aquiese on matters of morality and Christian conduct, principles and doctrines. 
   We must stand firm and strong in the face of persecution. And by God's power march ahead to total victory, even against all odds!
 In a Sept. 18, 2012 piece titled, 'A Nation Without an Anchor'Wes Moore writing about the USA stated: "Today we damn the Ten Commandments of Moses, and applaud the Five Pillars of Islam. We teach astrology to our fifth graders, but ban prayer. We ridicule faithful marriage, but idolize men sleeping with men. We devalue hard work and enterprize, and exalt the free ride.  So, what's the underlying cause of all this? Why does the moral compasss spin so widely? Why do we have to fight for things we once took for granted, and why are we all so full of fear? Because our nation has left its anchor. We're like a boat once tied down to shore, but now floats aimlessly for open water. We've been set free to go wherever the raging waters see fit.  What is the anchor we have lost? The Bible!"
   Human nature has not changed, people haven't changed and the Word of God has not changed! Human nature is still corrupt and human beings across the board are still at enmity against God and continue to follow their own corrupted, perverted and selfish will and agenda!
    The Bible speaks to man's depraved condition: "For My people have committed two evils; they have forsaken Me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water." (Jer. 2: 13)
     There is hope, however, the Ever Living One whose name is HOLY, reaches out to sinful earthlings like us all. Here is His proposition: "If My people, which are called by My name, shall HUMBLE themselves, and PRAY, and SEEK My face and TURN from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven, and will FORGIVE their sin, and will HEAL their land." (2 Chron.7:14)
     Again, He calls out to lost, sick and suffering mankind: "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be white as snow, though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." (Is.1: 18)
    You may ask, "What has the God of the Old Testament to do with Jesus Christ?" In short, the answer is "everything", because Jesus of Nazareth was God the Son from Eternity who was incarnated (God in human flesh) and born of the virgin Mary, so that He could meet the demands of divine Justice in paying for the sins of Adam and the human race.
   God's Word states: "To wit (that is) that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation." (2 Cor. 5: 19)
   When did this occur? As Jesus the Son was DYING on the Cross, being judged by His Father on our behalf, the Holy Spirit was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself. The great transaction occurred as God's Paschal Lamb suffered the pangs of death, hell and the grave as our Substitute. (Heb.2: 9-10)
   As God's Paschal Lamb, Jesus became a Sin Offering for all mankind, past, present and future. As Israel's paschal lamb had been examined for three days and found to be perfect in all respects, Jesus of Nazareth had been examined for three years by God and man, and found perfect. (Heb.5: 5-9: 7:25-27)
     Pontius Pilate repeatedly said, "I am innocent of the blood of this just person" (Matt.27: 24, 25);"I find no fault in Him." (John 19:6) and God the Father spoke with audible voice, "This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased."   
    At 3:00 pm on the 14th of Abib, 33 A.D. Jerusalem's High Priest transferred the sins of Israel to the paschal lamb and slaugtered it. At that moment, the Earth's Great High Priest rent the vail in the temple and standing on Golgatha laid His hands on His Son, transferring the sins of the entire world to Him. 
  At that precise time, the blessed Holy Spirit made the reconciliation between God and man, and Jesus shouted His Victory Cry, "It is Finished." (John 19: 30)
   Immediately, Jesus prayed: "Father into Thy hands I commend My spirit", and He went directly to Abraham's Bosom called Paradise, that part of Hades reserved for the righteous dead! (Luke 16: 22)

    "And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when Thou comest into Thy Kingdom, And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee,Today shalt thou be with Me in Paradise." (Luke 23: 42,43)
     The Holy Spirit entered into Jesus' blood and works in and through His blood today. For three days and nights the Holy Spirit stood guard over Jesus' body and blood, so that it could not deteriorate. When Jesus arose from the dead, the Holy Spirit presented to our Lord His own blood, to carry into the Holy of Holies in Heaven. (2 Cor. 5: 21)
   The Bible says: "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own Blood, He entered in once to the Holy Place having obtained Eternal redemption for us." (Heb.9: 12)
    It was His own blood that opened the door of Heaven for Jesus Christ and it is His precious blood that will open the Door of Heaven for us!
     Dr. Andrew Murray writes: "This does not mean that the Holy Spirit was in Jesus (the Lord), and bestowed upon His Person and His blood a Divine worth. It is much more than that - it indicates that the shedding of His precious blood was brought about by the Eternal Spirit and that the Spirit lived and worked in that Blood, so that when it was shed it could not decay as a dead thing, but as a Living Reality it could be taken up to Heaven to excercise its Divine Power from thence."
    Many Christians live with condemnation because of past sins and Satan has a way of bringing guilt upon believers even though the Word of God states: "There is therefore NO condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after te Spirit." (Rom.8: 1,2)
     The Bible gives us the answer: "How much more shall the blood of Christ, Who through the Eternal Spirit offered Himself withot spot unto God purge your conscience to serve the Living God." (Heb.9:14)
    The Word of God says: "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God." (Rom.3:23); "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." (Rom.6: 23)
   These two Scripture texts lay out the bad as well as the good news; perdition and salvation! It's not a pretty picture, but it is the truth. 
  We must face facts and then do an about turn in our thinking, believing and doing! Our steps must be ordered of the Lord. We must put Christ first in our lives! Jesus  said:
    "If ye abide in Me and My words abide in you. Ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you." (John 15:7). 
   Our Lord stated: "I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in Me, and I in Him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without Me ye can do nothing!" (John 15: 5). 
    Dr. Andrew Murray said: "Abiding in Him is a living union in which man is NOTHING and Christ is all in all. We must LOSE ourselves in Him and become Nothing!"
    St. Paul tells us of the great benefits derived by abiding in Christ: "In Whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. For in Him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in Him which is the head of all principality and power." (Col.2: 3, 9,10)
    "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, Who is our life shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory." (Col.3: 1-4). 
   May the Lord richly bless you and motivate you into a life of prayer, faithfulness and soul winning! Let me hear from you this week, my friend! Amen.