Tag Archives: Jesus

FIVE REASONS TO BE A HAPPY CHRISTIAN (PART 2)

“May the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and thankful” (Psalm 68:3).

Last week, I shared with you three wonderful reasons why you should be a happy Christian. If you recall, they are:  We have been justified, and that we have peace, and access. Those alone are enough to make us extremely happy, but just in case you’re one of those hard-to-be-happy people, I’ll share two more reasons with you.

  1. We have grace. “We have access by faith into this grace in which we now stand” (Romans 5:2a). Grace is wonderful! It is the unmerited favor of God. That means you didn’t do anything to earn it. He saved you because he loves you and he loves you because it is in his nature to love everyone (John 3:16).
  2. We have joy. “We rejoice in the hope of a glorious God” (Romans 5:2b). We rejoice in the gift of God which we have received. We rejoice that we can now live a Godly life. We even can rejoice in suffering (Romans 5:3-5). People can be happy with little and miserable with much. One of the secrets of finding happiness and contentment is to think about all the things you have, not the things you don’t. Learn to be like Paul who said, “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances” (Philippians 4:11). If you are a Christian, smile. You’ve got a lot to be happy about.

Robert Wilkerson is a minister, Christian writer, and co-founder of People for the Christian Way. drbobwilkerson@bellsouth.net   www.PeoplefortheChristianway.com

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ARE YOU JEWISH?

 

“Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews?” (Matthew 2:2).

“Are you Jewish?” The young man asked me. “No, I’m not,” I answered. “Well, you look a little Jewish,” and he muttered something about my nose as he walked away. I didn’t know there was such a thing as a Jewish nose, did you? God’s word tells us that we can’t know if someone is Jewish from their appearance. It says, “A man is not a Jew if he is only one outwardly; nor is circumcision only outward and physical. A man is a Jew if he is one inwardly and circumcision is circumcision of the heart by the spirit, not by written code.” (Romans 8:28). God’s word goes on to say, “But now a righteousness from God, apart from the law, has been made known. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe” (Roman’s 3:21-22). “The law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).

We owe a great debt to the Jewish people. Through them, we received the Law and the Law was, and is, good, but the Law cannot save. Also, never let us forget as Christians, the disciples were Jews and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was a Jew.

To hate or discriminate against Jews or any other group of people, is a clear indication that you do not have the mind or the heart of Jesus. I hope you do not do it, or even listen to anyone who does.

 

Robert Wilkerson is a minister, Christian author, and co-founder of People For the Christian Way. drbobwilkerson@bellsouth.net

Oh, You Can’t Get to Heaven

Can you remember that old song we sang as kids, “Oh, You Can’t Get to Heaven”? It listed several different ways you couldn’t (such as a motor car, a boat, etc.). It was sung in fun, but there are several ways adults try to get to heaven that won’t work, and one way that will.

You can’t get to heaven by following the law. The law is good as a guide, but the law can’t forgive. As the Bible says, “The law was given by Moses, but grace (God’s unearned favor) and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).

You can’t get to heaven by following man. John the Baptist is referred to in the Bible as one of the greatest men, yet he said, “After me will come one more powerful than I, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit” (Mark 1:7-8).

You can’t get to heaven by only belonging to a church. An old evangelist said going to a church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than going to a garage makes you an automobile. The question is not to what do you belong. It is to whom do you belong.

The one way that anyone and everyone, no matter how good or bad, can get to heaven is through Jesus Christ. He said plainly, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).

Have you found the way yet?

 

Dr. Robert Wilkerson is a minister and Christian writer. He is the founder of People For the Christian Way. He can be reached through peopleforthechristianway.com

 

I Want To Follow Jesus–Part 2 of 3

Matthew 16:24

If you do, that is great! First, you need to know the requirements. There are three: Deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow Jesus.
Taking up your cross is probably the most misunderstood of the three. Some think this means courageously living with some burden of the flesh like a handicap, arthritis, cancer, and the list goes on. While I can empathize with them, this is not the case. All those things come upon people as a result of being a human being with a body of flesh. There are at least four aspects of cross bearing:
1. You must voluntarily choose to do it. You are not obligated except for the urging of God’s love in Jesus Christ.
2. The Christian life itself is one of sacrificial service. It may require giving up your personal ambition or desires in order to do God’s will. It may mean serving Christ in some place, or in some way, where the reward and appreciation are small, if at all.
3. It may mean that you will be called to stand against the evil in your society or champion the causes of the poor and needy.
4. At the least, it will require giving up time, leisure, and pleasure to please God and serve others. There are no cheap crosses. It will cost you. Notice Jesus said you are to take up “your” cross. That means you must find what God wants you to do, and do it!
Do you still want to follow Jesus?

jesus_carrying_cross

I Want to Follow Jesus

Matthew 16:24
Part 1 of 3
Do you really want to follow Jesus? Have you thought seriously about it? Do you know what it will cost you?
Jesus said there are three things you must do if you want to follow him. None of the three have anything to do with denominations, churches, or how much water they use in baptism. There is no such thing as submarine salvation.
According to Jesus, and he’s the only true authority, you must deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow him. These are difficult requirements for most people to understand, much less follow. Let’s take them one at a time, and I will try and clarify them for you.
The first requirement is that you must deny yourself. Jesus wasn’t talking about giving up sweets, not buying a new car, or giving the church more money. He was talking about giving up your right to yourself. As a non-Christian, you have the right to direct your life, to become what you want, go where you want, do what you want, and live as you want.
The day you accepted Christ, he became both your Savior and Lord. The word “Lord” means ruler or king. Now, he will rule over your life. It no longer matters what you want, only what Jesus wants. You must seek his will, not your own, and do it. The emphasis is on the doing. Jesus doesn’t really care about the things you can give him, until first you give him yourself.

Dr. Robert Wilkerson is a minister, writer, and founder of People for the Christian Way, an organization whose mission is to encourage all people to practice Christian principles in business, politics, and every area of life. drbobwilkerson@bellsouth.net.

Don’t Forget–He Arose!

Mark 16:6

“What does that mean?” the man asked the little boy as they looked at a beautiful picture of the crucifixion in a store window. “The man on the cross is Jesus,” the boy answered, “an’ those others are Roman soldiers, an’ the woman crying is his mother, an’” he added sorrowfully, “they killed him.” Finally, the man turned and walked down the street. In a few minutes, he heard footsteps running behind him, and the little boy rushed up to him. “Say mister,” he said breathlessly, “I forgot to tell you, but he rose again!”—Inspiration.

Our churches often spend weeks calling Christ’s death to our memories through special services and the frequently celebrated Lord’s Supper (Holy Communion). His resurrection is celebrated for only one day, and even then, its importance has to compete with emphasis on children, rabbits, and eggs. It should not be so.

We must not lose our awareness of the importance of the resurrection. God’s word tells us that Jesus Christ “. . . was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead . . .”(Romans 1:4). We follow no pitiful martyr, but a living Savior who won the victory over death, hell, and the grave!

Because of the resurrection, we know our sins have been forgiven. On the cross, Jesus suffered and died for your sins and mine. When God raised him from the dead, it proved that God had accepted the price that Jesus paid, and all was well.

Because of the resurrection, we know that death is not the end. Death may have taken our loved ones, but only for a little while. Death may take us, but we too will live. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies, and whoever lives and believes in me will never die” (John 11:26).

Let all God’s people lift their voices in praise and worship. “Christ the Lord is ris’n today, Al-le-lu-ia!

Dr. Robert Wilkerson is a minister, writer, and founder of People for the Christian Way, an organization whose mission is to encourage all people to practice Christian principles in business, politics, and every area of life. drbobwilkerson@bellsouth.net, http://www.peopleforthechristianway.com

 

DOING WHAT WE CAN

Mark 14:1-9

Jesus was at the home of Simon the leper. During supper, a woman came in with a beautiful flask of expensive perfume. Then she broke the seal and poured it over his head.

“That’s wasteful,” some of them said. “She shouldn’t have done that,” others joined in. “Why that expensive perfume could have been sold for a fortune and the money given to the poor,” they snarled. But Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Why criticize her for doing a good thing? You always have the poor among you, and they badly need your help, and you can help them whenever you want to; but I won’t be here much longer. She has done what she could, and has anointed my body ahead of time for burial.”

The woman in this story is an example for all of us. Jesus paid her a great compliment when he said, “She has done what she could.” We need to ask ourselves if we are doing what we can?

Unfortunately, some of us have inferiority complexes that make us think to ourselves, “I can’t do anything. I can’t teach, preach, witness, or sing.” As a young boy in a church, I sat behind an older man who couldn’t carry a tune, but he didn’t let that stop him. He sang unto the Lord. He made a joyful noise. His singing was a blessing to me and to all who heard him. Can’t sing? Then make a joyful noise.
Some of us don’t give as we should. We think we’re not rich, my little bit won’t make a difference. The woman that Jesus praised wasn’t rich either. The perfume she poured over Jesus’s head was the most valuable thing she owned. True love is like that. It doesn’t count the cost—it is extravagant. She gave what she could. She gave it willingly, and gave it when needed most. What she did was one of the last acts of kindness done for Jesus before his crucifixion, and it was a great blessing to him.
The message here is let’s not think about what we can’t do—let’s do what we can.

Dr. Robert Wilkerson is a minister, writer, and founder of People for the Christian Way, an organization whose mission is to encourage all people to practice Christian principles in business, politics, and every area of life. drbobwilkerson@bellsouth.net, http://www.peopleforthechristianway.com