Sunday, February 12, 2023

There IS a Difference

There IS a Difference
by David Brenneman 

"The Jews then surrounded Him and began saying to Him, “How long will You keep us in suspense? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.” Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe; the works that I do in My Father’s name, these testify of Me. But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep. My sheep listen to My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give them eternal life, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.” John 10:24-30 NASB 

Read that then read this...

"But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne.  And all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, just as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats;  and He will put the sheep on His right, but the goats on the left.  Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.  For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;  naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You as a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’  And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it for one of the least of these brothers or sisters of Mine, you did it for Me.’ Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, you accursed people, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink;  I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’ Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or as a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’ Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it for one of the least of these, you did not do it for Me, either.’ These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” Matthew 25:31-46 NASB 

Do you hear His voice or your own? Will you be on His right or on His left?  

It says in John that we are in His hands. We are not capable of holding on, on our own as long as sin has an impact on our lives.  He, however, isn't impacted by sin and has no trouble holding onto us. 

We either are out for our glory or His.  The world wants us to puff ourselves up. To promote self. The world literally wants us to be lovers of self.  To think of self more than others. To accumulate Certifications and Degrees. To step on those who are in our way to making our kingdom here on Earth. In politics and the corporate world its very much cutthroat. If you are trying to be honest and forthright in either, in most cases you will face brutal attacks. 

We certainly want Jesus being the one to hold our hand. We certainly want Him guiding us. We want His will to be done and not ours. We want this because in everything He does, He never fails. He can't be duped, cannot be made a fool of. He can't be deceived because He knows the hearts of mankind.  He knows the Father’s will. He always displays the Father’s love.  He intercedes on our behalf daily. He leads us through the valley of the shadow of death. His rod and His staff are at the ready. There's no scheme of Satan that He isn't prepared to deal with. 

Our obedience impacts our hand holding. 
Our obedience can be like that child we often see pulling at the parents hand once they get into the toy section of the store.  We get swayed by the bling, the shiny things. We are totally unaware of the dangers. 

We often pull away from God thinking we understand enough to handle life. It's why we always need Him holding our hand instead. 

I have had a very long journey back from pulling away from God, thinking I understood the direction of my life, thinking that I was prepared for the things that I perceived as great and wondrous. I saw not the deep valley's that I would need to go through to make me able to handle what I saw. 

We lose a lot by embracing what the world offers.  We can lose out integrity. We can lose our sensitivity to the things of God. We lose our mobility in the Spirit. Chains begin to encompass us that don't belong. We can shift the focus off of God to the things of this world for ourselves and others.  We can make things of this world more important than being Spiritually in the center of God's will and plan for us.

Many billions of people will claim to have done much in Jesus's name. 
Those billions will be told to depart from Him for He never knew them. 

We need to be sure of our salvation in Christ Jesus. Then we need to indeed take up our own cross and follow Him.  We are supposed to be different from the world, we aren't to blend in or figure out how to live as close as we can to the world without stepping in it.  We aren't to create our own kingdom but to point others to His. 

Read again those opening passages.  If you aren't one of His, Hell, painful, horrific Hell is your next destination after death.  The only one who can choose salvation in Christ Jesus is you. Nobody can choose for you. Nobody can get anyone else out of Hell.  Painful, torment awaits those who reject Jesus. 

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but so that the world might be saved through Him. The one who believes in Him is not judged; the one who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the Light; for their deeds were evil.  For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light, so that his deeds will not be exposed. But the one who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds will be revealed as having been performed in God.” John 3:16-21 NASB 

You, my Friend, do not need to be judged already.  You are but one decision away from salvation in Christ Jesus. 

Romans 10:8-14 NASB "But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;  for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Jesus loves you and is longing to go through life with you, holding your hand and helping you find the life that you've been longing for. 

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