Sunday, December 22, 2019

A Blessed, Joyous and Safe Christmas to Everyone in Jesus' Holy Name from our Family to Yours! - Max & Donna Solbrekken

                                                 By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.
      How good is God’s guarantee of Forgiveness, Healing and Deliverance? Does He always keep His Word? Is He totally honest, trustworthy and dependable? Does He really care for us all? And, why should He care about us? The answer is an emphatic “Yes, He does keep His Word. And He does care for us, because He created us in His own image and because He has already provided for our Eternal Salvation!
     The Holy Bible is His letter of love and mercy to us and proof of His great compassion and salvation. It is the title deed to our forgiveness and eternal inheritance! It is our compass to right living and together with the Holy Spirit, the roadmap to victory over sin, sickness, fear and the devil!
     “If we confess our sins (to Him), He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9). “He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in Himself: He that believeth not God hath made Him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of His Son.
      “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life; and this life is in His Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son, hath not life.
                   AND THIS IS THE RECORD!
    “And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He heareth us: And if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.” (1 John 5: 10-15)
     Herein lies the secret to receive answers to our prayers! It revolves around our relationship with God. How well do we know Jesus Christ? Through absorbing His Word and getting to know Him intimately, the Holy Spirit gives us a word of faith that we have reached Him. When we know that, the answer is forthcoming!
     By going back in history, we have the record of God’s faithfulness by the fulfillment of His prophecies. Almighty God warned Adam and Eve what would happen if they disobeyed. Their willful sin of disobedience and rebellion brought swift judgment upon the human race.
     He warned the antediluvian world that if they kept on sinning, there would be consequences and there were. God sent the flood that destroyed everyone except Noah and his family. The same happened to Sodom and Gomorrah with terrible consequences. He warned Lot and his family to flee from the coming judgment, with the injunction that they must not look back to Sodom.
     Lot’s wife disobeyed and looked back. Judgment was swift and she immediately turned into a pillar of salt. Recently, archeologists have discovered that pillar of salt near the Dead Sea.
     The Lord promised Abraham a land flowing with milk and honey.  He obeyed and gave himself unto God’s plan. God gave him the land of Palestine. (Genesis 3: 1-5). Three thousand years ago, King David built Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. God remembered His promise to Abraham! And today, God is using a tough plain-speaking man, President Donald Trump of the United States to turn the tables on the enemies of the Jewish Nation!
                     ISRAEL IS GOD’S TIME PIECE!
     It has been said: “Israel is God’s Time piece and Jerusalem is His second hand.” I agree with that! The Word of God states that Jerusalem is the “apple of His eye.” (Deuteronomy 32:10)
     God warned the Jewish nation to turn away from idols, and to return unto Him and His Laws or He would scatter them to the ends of the earth. They disobeyed and spent the last 2,000 years roaming the earth, driven from country to country.
    Then in 1948, after the most terrible persecution and the Holocaust where 6 million Jewish people were slaughtered, Almighty God returned them to their homeland. God destroyed Adolf Hitler and the German Nazi Nation!
    And in 2016, God came their defense again by raising up an intelligent and spiritually alert businessman who would bless Israel. President Donald Trump kept his promise to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem their Capital City, and to drain the corrupt swamp in Washington.
                     GOD PROMISED A DELIVERER!
     In the Garden of Eden, God had promised a Deliverer who would die as His Paschal Lamb for the sins of the world: “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her SEED; it shall bruise (crush) thy (satan) head, and thou shall bruise His heel.” (Genesis 3: 15).
    Isaiah prophesied that the Deliverer that God would send, would bring peace to hearts, healing to sick bodies and forgiveness of sins to all who trust in His Name and obey His Word! More than seven hundred years before His advent, Isaiah prophesied:
   “Surely, He hath borne our sicknesses and carried our pains: yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him, and with His stripes we are Healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the Lord hath laid upon Him the iniquities of us all.” (Isaiah 53: 4-6)
                      JESUS FULFILLED THEM ALL!
     When Jesus came, He fulfilled those prophecies to the letter: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me: because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tiding unto the meek; He hath sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are  bound.” (Isaiah 61:1)
     Everywhere Jesus went, He preached the Gospel of God’s salvation of mercy, love and deliverance! He healed the sick, suffering and afflicted, and He raised the dead back to life!
    “And there was delivered unto Him the book of the prophet Esaias, and when He had opened the  book, He found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor; He hath sent Me to heal the broken hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised.”  (Luke 4: 17, 18)
  Right from the beginning of His ministry, our Lord brought deliverance to multitudes of sick and suffering people: “And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the Gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of disease among the people.
     “And His fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto Him all sick people that were taken with diverse diseases and torments and those who were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatic, and those that had the palsy; and He healed them.” (Matt. 4:23-24)
     Jesus fulfilled that prophecy. Everywhere He went, He preached the Gospel, cast out devils and fulfilled the Holy Scriptures!

    That God is the author of eternal Salvation is undisputed. That the Eternal Living One is merciful, kind and trustworthy goes without saying! That not only is our Lord gracious, good and merciful, but that He is at this moment more than willing to pour out His benevolence upon mankind.
   His goodness and grandiose largess is proved by His willingness to save our planet and billions of lost souls who reside here. That is proved beyond the shadow of a doubt, through the fact that in His goodness and mercy, He has pledged His love to any and all who trust in these promises.
      Does God ever fail? Has He ever failed? Will He ever fail. A Thousand times, No. He cannot and will not ever fail. It is impossible for God to recant on His pledges and promises to us in His Holy Word!”
                      There is eternal security for all true believers in Christ! All who have invited Jesus Christ to come into their heart and life, as Lord and Saviour and are serving Him according to His Word, are born again!
    St. Peter writes, Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: For if ye do these things ye shall never fall. (2 Peter 1:10).
    We are admonished to keep our priorities right, to give diligence to make our calling and election sure. In other words, keep our powder dry. Keep our defenses up and follow the Manuel. The Rule Book is the Word of God, the Holy Bible!
     The Holy Bible states, “According as His divine power that hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness through the knowledge of Him (Christ) that hath called us to glory and virtue.
    “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (2 Peter 1: 3, 4)
     St. Peter warned: “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time. Casting all your cares upon Him (Jesus), for He careth for you.”
    “Be sober, be diligent, because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. “Whom resist steadfast in the Faith…” (1 Peter 5: 6-9). He warns of the sin of Pride and admonishes us to cast ourselves upon Jesus, knowing that He cares for us. (v.7).
     Then, he warns us of Satan, our real enemy, who walks about like a roaring lion, whom we must resist in the faith of Jesus! (v.8)
      Coming back to our text, we see the powerful protection program, helping us to stay in the faith of Jesus. To resist the devil is to stay in God’s Word!
    Whereby are given to us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these ye might be partakers of the Divine Nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”
    The KEY is Christ and His Promises. To be in Christ we must live in His Word. Lust is the KEY to falling, but Christ and His promises is the KEY to standing!  
    “And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue: (keeping oneself pure from lustful things) and to virtue knowledge: and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.
     “For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind and cannot see a far off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.
    “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election SURE: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting Kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” (2 Peter 1: 5-11)
                 LOOKING UNTO JESUS!
   Are we living pure and holy lives, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith? Are we walking in the light of the Gospel? If not, there must be repentance and godly fear, and turning back to our Saviour!
       The Bible states: “But if we walk in the Light as He is in the Light, we have fellowship one with another, and the BLOOD of Jesus Christ, His Son cleanseth us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7)
   “Behold, I stand at the door (of your heart), and knock:  if any man hear My voice and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him and he with Me.” (Romans 3: 20)
     JESUS said: “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: And I give unto them Eternal Life; and they shall not perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all, and no man is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand.” (John 10:27-29)   
                      CHRIST IS THE ANSWER!     
“And Jesus said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from Heaven. Behold I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” (Luke 10: 18,19);
    “And He said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
    “And these SIGNS shall follow them that believe: In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues. They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay their hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:15-18)
     “These things have I written unto you that believe on the Name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. And this is the confidence that ye have in Him, that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us:
     “And if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.” (1 John 5:13-15)
     This is our Testimony: In Christ, by Christ, through Christ and For Christ! Faith unchained, truth unfettered, agape love exhibited, mercy unending, grace amazing, joy infectious, peace unsurpassed, anchored in the Word of God! Amen.