Does sin matter if I’m basically a good person?

​​ This answer requires us to define two words, SIN and GOOD.

The Bible defines sin not as a bad deed, but rather anything that we do that separates us from an intimate relationship with God. We can recognize how adultery destroys the trust between a husband and wife often leads to separation. That’s what sin is like, an action that seems to be good, or one that we rationalize as good can cause a break in a relationship. Stealing items of value, or lying, or saying something that damages the reputation of another person are all acts that destroy trust and break relationships. We may not feel it at the time, but sinful acts often create feelings of guilt and shame and can lead to depression or worse.
 The second definition we have to consider is “good”.  What do you mean when you say that you are “basically good”? What is your objective standard for measuring goodness? In the Bible we are reminded that no matter how good or righteous we think we are, by God’s standard of holiness and perfection our righteousness is like filthy rags. (Isaiah 64:6) So, it is clear by God’s standard that you are a sinner even when you believe you are a “good” person. You don’t get to place all of your goodness on one side of a scale and expect it to outweigh your sin on the other side of the scale. No matter how much good is attributed to you, if you do not believe in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior you will not be able to experience God’s love and forgiveness.
The good news is that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8) Jesus paid the penalty for our sins at the cross. So now we can experience forgiveness and relief from sin that God offers when we put our trust and faith in Him. That also means that when we stumble into sin again we can seek God’s forgiveness and restore our relationship with Him. When we abide in Christ and walk in the light of God’s Inspired Word we are able to overcome sin and its power in our lives. Are you a follower of Jesus so you can enjoy God’s forgiveness and the abundant and eternal life that is available only in Him? If not, why not do it today. 

What Does it Mean to Worship God?

What Does it Mean to Worship God?

Worship is the grateful response to a gracious and loving God. It means honoring the God of creation who has given life and the assurance of eternal life for all put their trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.  Worship is a spontaneous and voluntary act of gratitude offered by the saved sinner to the Savior.

Simply stated, worship is just saying, “thank you God for all your blessings.”  The fact is that every good thing a person has in life is a gift from God. So in worship, we praise God for his amazing works in creation. We praise him because His power is great and His unfailing love is even greater. In a greater sense, worship reflects the condition of the human heart and lifts the human spirit. Worship connects people with God at the spiritual level.

In the Christian perspective, Stewardship is worship. Service in missions and in the church is worship. Good works, done in Jesus name, is worship. Singing praises to the Lord as worship. Sharing the good news of the Gospel with others is worship.  In other words, all of life’s activities should be worship. Worship will be one of the primary activities for eternity in heaven. In worship we say, “To God be the glory. Great things he has done!”  This is what it means to worship God.

Can a Christian become demon-possessed?

Can a Christian become demon-possessed?

The simple answer is, no. But the forces of evil can both influence and tempt you, even if you are a Christ-follower.

As a child of God, with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, you are protected from any inroads of demons. In Johns gospel, he reminds us that “Greater is he that is in you than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4) The “ he ” John is referencing is God, in the form of the Holy Spirit, who is within all believers. That Holy Spirit is greater than the spirit of evil represented by Satan.

Satan uses many devices to draw Christians away from God. He is a master of deceit and uses all manner of temptations to try and separate a Christian from his Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ. In fact, it was on Jesus, that Satan tried all of his tricks to tempt Jesus to turn his back on his Father and the mission he came to earth to fulfill. Jesus was tempted in all the ways that a Christian may be tempted, but he did not give in, he did not sin.

Unlike Jesus, we are not God, and all people, Christians and non-Christians alike will sin. But, if you sin and you confess that sin to God and ask for his forgiveness, he will forgive and bring you back into a right relationship with him. The good news is that God also gives you the power to flee from temptation and not enter into sin. You have been given the free will to decide how you will respond. Choose wisely.

What is the “Good News” of Christmas?

What is the “Good News” of Christmas?

The good news of Christmas dates back to the creation of the world by God and the creation of man who was made in God’s image. God intended that the man and woman he created, Adam and Eve, would live in perfect harmony with Him—enjoying perfect fellowship and being obedient to His commands thereby allowing them to experience perfect joy.

The problem is that man rebelled against God, breaking the fellowship and learning that what they thought would be freedom, turned into slavery to sin. That brought all the negative consequences that humans experience today. Those include pain, suffering, broken relationships, lack of peace and death. God who is perfect could not be in fellowship with imperfect humans. Their sins separated them forever from God and ensured that they would suffer throughout eternity for their continued rebellion from God.

Through Jesus, His son, God provided a way for men and women to be rescued from the consequences of their sin. God let Jesus take on the sin of all mankind–a substitute sacrifice that was acceptable to God. Jesus laid down his life that those who willingly accepted this substitutionary sacrifice might have their relationship to God restored. That brought with it the promise of an eternal life free of the consequences of sin. That’s the good news of Christmas, because Christmas is the celebration of the arrival of Jesus on earth in the form of a human. It’s the celebration of a life that culminates in death on a cross where the sins of all men and women–past, present and future–are paid for by the shedding of Jesus’ blood allowing us to be redeemed through the subsequent resurrection of Jesus.

What does God expect us to do with this knowledge that Jesus died in our place so we can be saved from God’s wrath against our sins? He expects us to accept the sacrifice of His son Jesus, turn away from our sin, and have faith that we will experience peace in this life and an eternity of contentment with Him. Christmas is a celebration of this good news, “For unto you a Savior is born who is Christ the Lord.” The final question is, have you believed it and accepted Jesus as your Savior? It is the most important decision a person ever makes. Merry Christmas!

Is Thanksgiving a Christian Holiday?

Is Thanksgiving a Christian Holiday?

Yes and No. As with many traditions, secularism and consumerism have hijacked what had traditionally been a day for America to reflect on the blessings God had bestowed on Americans and their nation. In 1619, as a requirement of their charter, English settlers at Berkley Plantation in Virginia observed the first official Thanksgiving in the America.

Yes and No. As with many traditions, secularism and consumerism have hijacked what had traditionally been a day for America to reflect on the blessings God had bestowed on Americans and their nation. In 1619, as a requirement of their charter, English settlers at Berkley Plantation in Virginia observed the first official Thanksgiving in America.

Two years later, some 50 Pilgrims in Plymouth Massachusetts were joined by 100 natives in what is traditionally thought of as the first Thanksgiving. The multi-day feast was to celebrate God’s hand in their survival through the harsh first winter during which half of their number perished. That survival was aided by Squanto, an English-speaking native, who helped the Pilgrims fish and plant corn.

Much later, in 1789, President George Washington, floated the idea of a national day of thanksgiving, and, with the approval of Congress, asked the nation to set aside Thursday, November 26 as

“a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.”

Years later, in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln designated the last Thursday in November “as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father.” That tradition continued until Congress, in 1941, officially established the fourth Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day.

Today, many people associate Thanksgiving with family, food, and football and planning their Black Friday shopping. They often leave out the giving of thanks to God for everything they have. Regardless of how they celebrate it, Thanksgiving is much more than a Christian holiday, it is universal to all. It is a day when everyone can

“Give thanks to the LORD, because he is good. His faithful love continues forever”

(1 Chronicles 16:34)

Image by upsyacqs from Pixabay

What’s the meaning of “The Fruit of the Spirit is Love”?

What’s the meaning of “The Fruit of the Spirit is Love”?

When a person decides to enter into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ he or she receives the gift of the Holy Spirit. This is a new life that one finds only in Jesus. In other words, a person is ‘born again’ and becomes a new creation in Christ. The Bible clearly states in Galatians 5:22 that “the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” These virtues are among the fruits that grow within a believer by the power of the Holy Spirit. This means that the seeds of truth have fallen on receptive hearts. The Christian’s purpose is to provide these marvelous virtues or fruits to the world in which one lives.

It is important to notice that love is the first in the list of fruits of the Spirit. This is because all of the others are expressions of love. Without love, the others are not produced and are worthless. So, where can one get this love? This love, God’s love, comes from a relationship with Jesus Christ. A person is able to love like this because God first loved him or her. The best expression of this love is seen at the foot of Jesus’ cross. The Scriptures remind us, “greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

Love is like a window through which we can see God. His love comes to us as a gift. Believers are like the tree waiting for its Question – What is the meaning of “The Fruit of the Spirit is Love”?

When a person decides to enter into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ he or she receives the gift of the Holy Spirit. This is a new life that one finds only in Jesus. In other words, a person is ‘born again’ and becomes a new creation in Christ. The Bible clearly states in Galatians 5:22 that “the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” These virtues are among the fruits that grow within a believer by the power of the Holy Spirit. This means that the seeds of truth have fallen on receptive hearts. The Christian’s purpose is to provide these marvelous virtues or fruits to the world in which one lives.

It is important to notice that love is the first in the list of fruits of the Spirit. This is because all of the others are expressions of love. Without love, the others are not produced and are worthless. So, where can one get this love? This love, God’s love, comes from a relationship with Jesus Christ. A person is able to love like this because God loved them first. The best expression of this love is seen at the cross where Jesus died. The Scriptures remind us, “greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

Love is like a window through which we can see God. His love comes to us as a gift. Believers are like the tree waiting for its fruits to ripen. Each one must make sure that they are planted by streams of living water. In a way, Christians are like a sailboat waiting to catch the winds of the Spirit. God’s marching orders for each of us is to make love our aim so that the world will know we are Christians by our love.