Archive | May 2011

The Responsibility of the Redeemed

“Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” Genesis 1:26. I have been considering this verse a lot lately in view of the degradation of our society right here in the United States of America. You see, in the beginning, man was created in God’s image bearing His likeness. He was created to reflect the glory of God by establishing His will on the earth. What has happened?

Let’s think about this. Adam and Eve were in harmony with God as they remained surrendered to God. They walked in the garden ensuring the rule of heaven was enforced on earth. They were able to do so because of their dependence on God. As they looked to God, His power, wisdom and joy flowed from heaven into them and through them. Then the serpent came along and Eve fell to the deception and temptation that she could live independent of God. She invited Adam to do the same. Adam, instead of ensuring God’s rule which stated they could eat from all the trees but one, went along with His darling wife. The harmony and joy they once experienced was lost as there is no harmony or happiness for those who live independent of their Creator. When we are tempted to live outside of God’s rule, we should keep this truth in mind. Man was created by God to be dependent on God. To try to live any other way results in chaos and devastation. Even the much sought after state of “happiness”, which to many appears to be elusive, can be found only in living for God. Because Adam was the Federal Head of all of mankind, his sin and the results of that sin was imputed to all who would be born from that day forward. Yet God had a plan to redeem man through His Son, Jesus Christ, and to restore what was lost. His plan was to make us sons and daughters and not just created beings and servants. He accomplished this as the righteousness of Christ was given to us when Christ took our sins upon Himself on the cross. We now have the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus instead of the lower level of righteousness that Adam could have attained had he lived without sin. Adam could never have been a royal child of God. This is only available for those who live in Christ Jesus. What a plan our God has! If you have received Christ as your Lord and Savior, then you have been adopted into the family of God. You are a royal daughter of the King of the Universe. You have been redeemed from sin and it’s power as well as from the curse of the law.

God’s plan to redeem and restore is being played out through our lives as new creations in Christ as we take seriously the responsibility we are charged with. Because Christ lives in us, we have been empowered to walk in the ways of God; to discern what is truly of God versus what is not; and to rule over the earth, developing culture and ensuring the rule of heaven is carried out. The enemy of Christ, as well as our old nature, sometimes pulls on us tempting us to walk in our own wisdom and rule as did Adam and Eve. And when we do, we find devastation as did they. Could it be that the mess we are in whether it is personally or as a country is due to our negligence concerning the things of God? Have we been negligent, as was Adam, to ensure God’s will be done in our lives? In our country?

As the redeemed of the Lord, we have been blessed as well as given responsibility to develop culture under the Lordship of Christ. To do so, it is imperative that we recognize that we are powerless without God. It is imperative that we recognize our need for Him. We must recognize our responsibility to bring His rule to earth. This means we must not live with our heads in the sand. We need to repent and quit ignoring what is happening around us. We must take action and the first action we must take is to PRAY! God tells us that if His people will humble themselves and pray, and turn from their wicked ways, He will heal their land (2 Chronicles 7:14). We fulfill God’s purpose for our lives to bring glory to Him as we remain dependent on Him and grow in His image (Romans 8:29). His image is developed by the power of the Holy Spirit as we take heed to 1 Timothy 4:7-8, “Train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” We stay connected and surrendered to God through His Word, prayer and Christian fellowship. The more we grow in His image, the more we are empowered to affect the world around us. We then fulfill our cultural mandate through the “gospel mandate” by proclaiming Christ’s name and sharing God’s ways throughout the world (Mt 28:18-20).

We have the power of God living in us as royal daughters of the one true God. Let’s examine our lives and our commitment to grow in His image. Let’s ensure His will be done on the earth. Let’s unite in prayer and godly action to bring glory to God in our lives and our land. Shall we? Serving Christ and His Women, Sarah Goebel “Encouraging women with the Word to produce a harvest of Christ-likeness” http://www.sarahgoebel.com

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Is May 21, 2011 the Date for Christ’s Return as Camping Predicts?

Friends, Here in California there is a billboard posting that May 21 is the date Christ will return and judgment will begin to fall upon the earth. Wow…that is definitely right around the corner. What do you think about this prediction? I thought you might enjoy the article I have posted below . It is written by Rusty Wright and Meg Kopi. I have posted it here with permission and my comments follow it.
“We understand that Jesus is coming back this year. On May 21, 2011, to be precise. Our wedding anniversary! We read it in the Washington Post. * It seems that Harold Camping, a Christian radio broadcaster in Oakland, California, has determined the date through a complex analysis involving biblical prophecies, numerical codes, and his calculated date of Noah’s flood: Jesus will return May 21 to take believers to heaven and begin judging the world. “Save the Date!” advise billboards and signs on supporters’ cars.
Forget all that Mayan-prophecy/movie stuff about 2012 being the apocalyptic year. Camping says 2011 is when the real end-times action begins. According to his website, “The Bible Guarantees It.” Guaranteed? Whoa! What’s that about? Finale Forecast Camping calculates that Noah’s flood occurred in 4990 BC/BCE. (The Bible doesn’t state the year, so we guess one needs faith in Camping’s calculations.) The Bible does indicate that God gave Noah seven day’s warning to board the Ark; elsewhere it says that with God, one day is like a thousand years. So, according to Camping, seven days warning for Noah means seven millennia for us. (The connection’s complex; if you’re like us, you’ll need more faith.)
Now add 7,000 years to 4990 BC/BCE (including an extra digit because there’s no year zero) and you get 2011 AD/CE. Whew! There’s more. Writes Camping: “Amazingly, May 21, 2011 is the 17th day of the 2nd month of the Biblical calendar of our day. Remember, the flood waters also began on the 17th day of the 2nd month, in the year 4990 B.C.” Puzzled? We empathize. But wait. 2011. Twenty eleven. “Eleven” rhymes with “heaven.” And May 21, 2011, is our eleventh anniversary. Whoa! Spooky! Maybe there is something to this May 21st thing.
If Jesus is coming that day, maybe we should invite him to our anniversary. It’s on a Saturday this year—wonder if he could make it? Renewed Vows On most anniversaries we return to the small mountain chapel where we wed, and renew our vows. It’s a private celebration, just the two of us … and, of course, God as our witness. Make’s a great refresher. We highly recommend it. Sometimes, the chapel door is locked.
A few years ago, we couldn’t get in, so we renewed our vows in our car across the street in front of the post office. Not the memoried locale we’d hoped for, but it was romantic all the same. Of course, Jesus wouldn’t have a problem with locked doors, if his past is any indication. But he does have a history of attracting crowds, and that could be awkward in a small chapel. Plus, would he even have the time if he’s busy judging the world that day?
More Concerns
There’s another concern. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Camping once promised Christ would return on September 6, 1994. When that didn’t happen, he allowed he might have made a mathematical error.
Bigger problem: Jesus said there would be signs of his second coming, but “no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.” Oops. What about Camping’s “biblical guarantee”? Guess you have to be careful in what – or whom – you believe. Camping and his supporters may mean well, but somehow we think that Jesus knows more about this one. His prophetic track record is better anyway. Think we’ll plan on a quiet, private anniversary celebration on May 21. Jesus can watch, of course, but we’re guessing it will be from heaven. Rhymes with eleven.”  
                                                                                       Copyright © 2011 Rusty Wright and Meg Korpi
                                                                                        http://www.rustywright.com
MY COMMENTS: Although I believe we are most likely in the end of the end times season of the earth, according to Scripture, no one knows the exact day or hour of His return. It doesn’t matter what kind of mathematical calculations you come up with. It says, no one knows. We should be ready at all times to meet our Lord face to face yet at the same time Jesus desires to find us busy about His work when He returns; not just standing still looking up at the clouds waiting for Him. Therefore, I will end this post with this question, “Are the signs of the times causing you to stand still or are they motivating you to get busy advancing Christ’s Kingdom?”  I hope your answer is the latter but if not, it is not too late. At least not as of May 16th, 2011. Blessings to you all! All for Christ’s Glory, Sarah