Glorifying God through Prayer and Worship
Living a Life that Pleases Our God
Pray that all would comprehend the cost
God So loves Us
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)
God, in his perfect love for us, desires that none should perish but that all would turn to him and be forgiven. So to make this possible, Jesus Christ who was without sin, took our sins upon himself and suffered the penalty for our sins. He, in his love for us, suffered by the hands of sinful man through beatings and whipping's and then being nailed to a cross. Last of all, he died and spent three days and nights in the heart of the earth. But by the power of our God he was raised from the dead and is now seated at the right hand of the Father making intercession for us. For it's true that our God wants all to be saved, for his word says: The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9). And this is also true in the Old Testament where we read in Ezekiel: For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye. (Ezekiel 18:32) Also, in chapter 33 God says: Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel? (Ezekiel 33:11) Again, this all falls back on what was stated above in John 3:16 which says that "God so loved the world."
Now, even though God gave his only begotten Son to die for us, we should never question His love for His Son. For Jesus himself said: Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father. (John 10:17-18) Also, we see this to be true in the Gospel of John which reads: The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. (John 3:35) Paul the Apostle says concerning Jesus: I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20) So, we see both Jesus and the Father working together on the plan of salvation. On the one hand, the Father loved us so much that he was willing to give up his Son to die for our sins. And on the other hand, we have Jesus who loved us so much and was willing to give himself over for us, suffering all things for our forgiveness. And let us be forever grateful to God for what he did.
You will not leave my soul in Hell
Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope: Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. (Acts 2:26-27)
From Peter's quote of Psalm 16:8-10 above, we can see that Jesus went to hell and was glad that his soul would not be left there. For Peter goes on to say: Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne; He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. (Acts 2:29-31) From the Gospel of Luke, we can see that hell is hot and thus a place of torment: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. (Luke 16:22-24)
Also, we see that Jesus said he must spend three days and night in the heart of the earth: For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. (Matthew 12:40) So, for us to understand what Jesus meant when he said "as Jonah was" concerning the three days and nights in the whale's belly, we must read what Jonah had to say about it: Then Jonah prayed unto the LORD his God out of the fish's belly, And said, I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the LORD, and he heard me; out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardest my voice. (Jonah 2:1-2) So, form Jonah's own words, we can see that the heart of the earth was a place of affliction and was describe as hell as well. Also, we can see that Jesus went through the "pains of death," but God raised him up out of it: Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; "whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it. (Acts 2:23-24)
I Say to You Today
And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. (Luke 23:42-43)
So, how can Jesus spend three days and nights in the heart of the earth (hell) and yet be with the repentant thief in the realm of Today? Well first of all, let's see where the Bible says that paradise is: He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. (Revelation 2:7) So, we can see that this paradise of God is where the tree of life is. And where is the tree of life? And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. (Revelation 22:1-2) So this is where paradise is, in heaven, and not in some abode in the earth (underworld) which is mistakenly called "Abraham's Bosom." Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest? Paul the apostle himself testified of paradise in heaven when he said: "I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven. And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter." (2 Corinthians 12:2-4) So again, Paul says that paradise is "up" in heaven and not down in the heart of the earth.
Now, according to God's word, those who are in paradise are not going to experience the natural effect of day and night like we do here on earth. For we can see this to be true where we read: And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. (Revelation 22:5 KJV) So that being said, could the saved thief even comprehend a three day and night delay while Jesus spent that time in hell? Would it not seem like all the same day to him? And let's not forget what the Apostle Peter said, "But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” (2 Peter 3:8) So let God's word be a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path. (Psalm 119:105)
It is Finished
So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, "It is finished!" And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. (John 19:30)
Now we come to our Lords statement “it is finished.” So we must ask ourselves, what was it that he finished. Was it at that very moment that our forgiveness for sins as well as our redemption was totally completed? For we must remember that Jesus said "It is finished" before he died and rose from the dead. For God’s word say, “For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins!” (1 Corinthians 15:16-17) So, these two elements (his death and resurrection) are crucial for us believers because without them, there is no eternal life for us. Now, lets examine another passage which may help us to understand what Jesus meant when He said "It is finished." “And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. "I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do."And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was. "I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.” (John 17:3-6) So again, we see Jesus proclaiming on the cross that He finished the work which He was sent to do.
Into Your hands I commend My Spirit
And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, "Father, 'into Your hands I commit My spirit.' " Having said this, He breathed His last. (Luke 23:46)
From what we can see from the passage above, Jesus totally trusted his heavenly Father with his own life, giving Himself into His hands knowing that He would not leave his soul in hell. We can see this to be true when He said: I foresaw the Lord always before my face; for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved.Therefore my heart rejoiced and my tongue exulted; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope: because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. (Psalm 16:8-10) So that being said, he endured all that he must go through for our redemption, looking forward to the outcome that lies ahead. For God’s word says: Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:2) He saw the joy that was set before him, the redemption of our souls from hell. What an Awesome God we have who so loves us His creation
The Passover Lamb
And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it. And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it. Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof. (Exodus 12:7-9)
According to the above scripture, we now come to the Passover Lamb which had to be slain and its blood be applied to the house in order for its occupants to be saved? Not only that, but the Passover Lamb had to go through the fire before those in the house could partake of it and come out alive. This Passover is an act that depicts our Savior who gave his life for us all, having his body broken and his blood shed and who suffering the fire of hell as well. "And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. (Matthew 26:26) Jesus is that Lamb of God, for John the Baptist said: The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. (John 1:29) And let’s remember what Abraham said to his son Isaac: And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together. (Genesis 22:7-8) So, this prophecy speaks of Jesus who gave himself for a sacrifice for our sins. Amen
Now, let us look a a few more scriptures below:
Again, having said all this, we must not argue over this but come to the unity of faith knowing that we who are in Christ will be spending all eternity with our Lord. And that I hope we can all agree on. Amen.
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