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Wednesday, September 21, 2022

He seemed to know

 

Bible unfolding -  Luke 22 - Why did Jesus die?

The behaviour and words of the Lord Jesus become more mysterious. The Historian Luke, records Jesus following the normal Passover celebration routine. They gather, He with the twelve disciples, in a large upper room. Then begin the puzzling revelations:

“I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer” – He seemed to know something serious was about to happen !  Luke 22:15

Again “ I will not eat it (Passover) until it is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God” – how could the Passover be fulfilled? Did it have something to do with the title given to Him by John the baptiser – “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.”

 

As the meal was concluding, He said of the bread,” this is my body given for you.” Again: “the new covenant in my blood”. These are the terms of sacrifice, the promise of a better covenant, the means of forgiveness.

Evidently, Jesus knew not only the sufferings to come, but the purpose.

In many ways the disciples had reason for foreboding fears. In 22:30, He breaks through the storm clouds with this kingly statement: “I assign to you… to eat and drink at My table in My kingdom….”. What a moment to announce a place in His glorious kingdom. Well, I don’t know if they understood the glory of the statement, but we must perceive that this Jesus, knew the sufferings of tomorrow could not destroy the glory that would follow.

Luke 22:31    The foretelling of Peter’s denial is again evidence of His Divine knowledge. As they leave the Passover meal, the Lord links the happenings of the next few hours to the prophecies of the Old Testament.:

“For I tell you that this scripture must be fulfilled: ‘He was numbered with the transgressors’.”  ( Luke 22:37  -  Isaiah 53)

This is so significant since the quote from Isaiah 53 makes it very clear that the suffering Messiah  would “bear the sins of many”. This would enable the servant of the LORD to become the intercessor bringing many lost people back to God, granting forgiveness of sins and giving an abundant entry into His heavenly kingdom. Isaiah 53 is a must read to understand the seeming mystery surrounding the death of the Lord Jesus Christ. Read it again today!

Saturday, September 10, 2022

Vital question

 

The death of Jesus Christ- an unfortunate mistake or a deliberate sacrifice?

Many causes were involved – the Jewish leaders were jealous of His popularity, the Roman judge seeking to protect his own position, a crowd that was incited by nationalism. I would like to consider this question from the writings of the historian, Dr Luke. I will focus on the recorded words of the Lord Jesus himself.

At a time when Jerusalem was dangerous for Him, 'He resolutely set out for Jerusalem' (Luke 9:51)

He said to the people :  "What happens to me will be a sign that God has sent Me" (Luke 11:30)

In brief detail, He predicted His future:  "First the Son of man must suffer terribly and be rejected by this generation"  (Luke 17:25)

More detail is given that includes references to the Old Testament prophecies. – "When we get to Jerusalem, all the predictions of the ancient prophets concerning the Son of man will come true. He will be handed over to the Romans to be mocked, treated shamefully and spit upon. They will whip him and kill him, but on the third day he will rise again ." (Luke 18:32). It is significant that He knew the future, but more important that He acted with deliberate purpose.

As Jesus continued teaching in the city, the leading priests and scribes made plans to kill Him.

To be continued soon in Luke 22

Tuesday, September 6, 2022

Love, Mercy, Grace

 

Yesterday my cousin died. Three words came to mind and in his memory I write.

Love,  Mercy,  Grace

Love

God has many attributes – holy, just, forgiving but above all loving. His actions are for good and not evil. We can understand Him loving good people, but the truth is revealed in the Bible that God loves all the people of the world.

Mercy

Because God is love, He chooses to withhold judgement so that people have the opportunity to repent – to turn to God, and turn away from sin. Such kindness and pity is not to be despised for He will judge the world by Jesus Christ.

Grace

Beyond mercy, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ desires to give undeserved favour to all humans. The Lord God reaches out to all. To those who receive His Son, He freely gives complete forgiveness, acceptance, sanctification by the Holy Spirit, an inheritance in heaven and a place in the wonderful plans of God. Imagine it , "to be conformed to the image of His Son"!

Notice this is all God's doing. Through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Lord from heaven, God is reaching out to you today, with Love, Mercy and Grace.

Receive HIM and be saved, redeemed, reconciled, regenerated, sanctified, justified, glorified...!

"God loved the people of this world so much that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who has faith in Him, will not perish, but have eternal life." (John 3:16)


johnmckee@internode.on.net


Friday, August 19, 2022

The Lord Jesus reaching out to the lost world

 

The commission given to Paul by Jesus Christ the Lord, from heaven

Acts 26:17

  "I am going to send you to the Gentiles, to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God. Then they will receive forgiveness for their sins and be given a place among God's people, who are set apart by faith in Me"

And so he did , turning the world upside down, bringing freedom to so many and giving hope in a hopeless world.


johnmckee@internode.on.net


Sunday, August 7, 2022

Deception

 

Satan's lies.

One of his first lies can be summarised:

 'Disobeying God's command doesn't matter'

Or in the Bible record:"Did God really say you must not eat of the fruit of the garden?"  - after sowing seeds of doubt, the lie is more direct: 'You won't die, God knows that your eyes will be opened....when you eat you will become just like God ..'  (Genesis 3)

We today suffer the consequences of Adam and Eve disobeying God!


Jesus Christ said of the Devil:

"There is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character, for he is a liar and the father of lies."   (John 8)


John the apostle is more specific about the command that affects us directly:

"This is His commandment – we must believe in the Name of His Son, Jesus Christ and love one another."   (1 John 3)

The lie given to our generation is that Jesus is just a man, and at best a prophet.

The angel Gabriel and God the Father declared that Jesus was and is the Son of God, the Saviour of the world. Believing the lie of satan will take a person to satan's destiny – the lake of fire.


Comments to johnmckee@internode.on.net


Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Temptation

 

Response to temptation

After forty days of fasting, the Lord Jesus was tempted. His answers to the tempter are most enlightening . Let me quote them.

1    "people need more than bread for life " Luke 4 NLT

We are more than physical. We are spirit, soul and body in that order. The passions and needs of the body are very real, but the spirit is most important . The body connects us with earth. The spirit connects us with heaven.

 

2    "You must worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve"

The distractions of this world are very real. They become demanding, entwining and ultimately idolatrous. Be it religious, political, wealth, education, social status or self interest,,  anything that displaces God the  Almighty, God as priority, God as provident – such robs God of His rightful glory and is sin. 

 

3   " Do not test the Lord your God"

Trusting God's applicable promises is not sin. Seeking a sign is not sin. But doing or saying something that presumes upon the miraculous is tempting God. To pray 'Lord keep me' , then to drive dangerously is tempting God. If I pray 'deliver us from temptation', then choose to read the wrong, or watch the wrong things is testing God.

The Lord Jesus did not fall for the temptation. Let us watch and pray.

Lord keep my heart,.............

I need Thee every hour

Most gracious Lord

No tender voice like Thine

Can peace afford.

I need Thee every hour

Stay Thou nearby

Temptations lose their power

When Thou art nigh

Monday, June 20, 2022

In heaven

 

Now Christ has gone into heaven,

He is seated in the place of honour at the right hand of God,

and all the angels and powers are bowing before Him.

1 Peter 3:22

 

Heaven seems a far off place. To some it may seem like 'pie in the sky'. But wait – is the universe limited because I can't comprehend it all?  Is heaven impossible because we are limited and finite? I take the words of Jesus Christ seriously – He taught that God the Father is in heaven.

After Jesus died and rose again, the angels stood on the mountain called Olivet with these words:

"This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will return...." Acts 1

Another witness was Stephen:

"I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing in the place of honour at God's right hand."  Acts 7

God the Lord in heaven, creator of all, judge of all,  has given Jesus the highest place of honour and power. -  Messiah, Lord, Saviour, King of kings.

For thousands of years people have risen up to claim great fame, power and honour, but they are gone. For example, the pyramids stand witness to the wealth and power of the Pharaohs. But the mummified bodies tell us of their ultimate weakness and eternal poverty. Only Jesus Christ the Lord has risen from death, never to die again. He alone has the official right and moral right to sit at God's right hand!

For those who love Him, this brings peace, hope and joy.

For those who reject Him, tomorrow is uncertain, the prospect of judgement is sure. Without Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour,  a person is without God and without hope.

 

Soon all the angels, all powers, all authorities and all humanity will bow before the Lord Jesus Christ.

As the scriptures record:

"At the Name of Jesus, every knee should bow......   every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father."

Philippians 2:10

 

Better to bow the knee now, while mercy and grace are available.