An Everlasting Empire – Part 4 of 4


Overthrowing Satan’s Grasp

The signs of the end of this Age are everywhere. Many fear that the recent pandemic that has swept across the globe is just a forerunner of even worse plagues to come, which will cause far more death and destruction. And the way things have been looking in recent years, those folks aren’t far from the truth.

The corruption and wickedness of human society has metastasized to the point that it most certainly has become a reeking stench in the nostrils of the Lord, the holy God of the Bible. Indeed, it is only a question of time before, in his love and mercy, He brings down the final curtain on the sin-sick depravity that afflicts humankind.   

It isn’t by coincidence that — like the pains of a woman about to give birth — waves of earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, extreme climate events, and a variety of strange and seemingly inexplicable natural phenomena have begun to strike the planet with increasing frequency. It appears that in nearly every way this earth and its inhabitants are on a runaway train that’s headed straight for a cliff — on a ride from which there is seemingly no escape.

Fortunately, our heavenly Father is not in the least bit “surprised” by the devastating turn of events which will soon engulf the entire planet, for our Sovereign Lord dwells outside the dimension of time and its inherent limitations. As the Bible says, He sees “the end from the beginning” (Isaiah 46:10), which means that He has known about humanity’s fate from eternity past.

What is directly ahead for this world is nothing less than a global catastrophe; or to be more precise, a series of calamitous events that will cause “the end of the world as we know it (TEOTWAWKI).

Resurrected and Raptured Believers   

As we peer into the not-too-distant future, we will find that the “signs of the times” are those spoken of prophetically by Jesus Christ in Matthew 24 and the Book of Revelation concerning world events and his return to the earth. Even in the here and now it’s plain to see that wicked behind-the-scenes “powers that be” (i.e., satanic forces) are agressively attempting — by “any means necessary” — to impose a soulless, dictatorial, technocratic one-world government, with its spiritually degenerate one-world religion, on a morally confused and increasingly delusional global populace.

Our God is a good God who loves us and only wants the best for his children; but He is also a holy God who demands that sin be punished and put away like a filthy rag. Also, because Satan knows his time of dominion over this planet is running short, he is “pulling out all the stops” in his attempt to thwart the will of God on this earth. For these reasons, the fate of mankind at the end of the age is one of a time of trouble such as the world has never seen—just as Jesus Christ said it would be.

As judgment of the wickedness of a world under Satan’s grasp unfolds, we as believers are to look to the Lord for our redemption. Jesus is the blessed hope in which our future is anchored. Scripture tells us that for the unbelieving world he will come as a “thief in the night”—totally unexpected—but for us, who are his own, it will be Jesus’ promised return—the “coming of the Lord!”

Those saints (that is, his true followers) who have already died “in him” will be resurrected upon his return. At that same moment, “… in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump…”, his followers who are alive at that time will also be taken up to be with him (1 Corinthians 15:52). In other words, the resurrection and the rapture of the saints will be at the same moment. What an earth-shattering, glorious time it shall be!

Heaven on Earth—God’s Millennial Reign

Shortly thereafter, Jesus will return with the entire entourage of his followers to rule and reign for a thousand years. His throne will be moved from heaven to earth—to a “New Jerusalem”—one that will supernaturally descend from the heavens (Revelation 21:2) and replace the earthly Jerusalem that now exists.

At that very moment the spiritual atmosphere of the planet will be entirely changed. It will literally be “heaven come to earth.” Satan and his minions will be totally vanquished and their power and influence over humanity will be completely terminated. From that moment forward, the capital of the earth will be the New Jerusalem—a holy place filled with God’s glorious presence. From there shalom, blessing, and righteousness shall radiate to the ends of the earth.

All of the governments of this world will have been removed and an earthly paradise will be ushered in. The planet itself will be healed. The wounds and emotional scars of the past will be erased from peoples’ memory. It will be a time of bliss and unimaginable joy.

This is the glorious future God has planned for those who believe and trust in him. However, if we place our trust anywhere else we will surely find our hopes and dreams dashed on the rocks of the harsh realities that are straight ahead.

So, beloved, it would behoove us to wholeheartedly pray, just as Jesus instructed: “Let your Kingdom come. Let your will be done, on earth as in heaven!”

Yes Lord, let it be so!

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“For I will create a new heaven and a new earth; the past events will not be remembered or come to mind.”  (Isaiah 65:17, HCSB)

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This concludes our four-part series about “God’s Everlasting Empire.” If you’re not already “on the inside” of what God is doing and want to share in the good things He has in store for those who are his own, you need to first become part of his family.

To do so, you need to humbly:

  • repent from your sins (that is, to not only be sorry for them but also turn from your sinful ways)
  • believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is Lord (that is, trust in and rely upon him)
  • and also confess with your mouth that he is your personal Lord and Savior.

If you will do so, praying (speaking) from your heart to the Lord in faith, you will be saved—that is, “born again” and adopted into God’s family. Congratulations and welcome into the family!!

Please let us know if you’ve taken this most important step in your life. You can do so by contacting Dr. Peter at harvest.equip@gmail.com. We have a free gift waiting for you.

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And for everyone, until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

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PS: By clicking on the following link you can experience a very touching music video that is sure to move you! “I Can Only Imagine” by the One Voice Children’s Choir: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acwsBIl15zM

 

An Everlasting Empire – Part 3 of 4

Heading Toward Dystopia

All of the empires symbolized in the giant metallic man of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream are the works of man separated from God—a product of egotism and lust for conquest and domination.

The decreasing value of the metals from the head downward—from gold, to silver, bronze, iron and then to a mixture of iron and clay—portray that the long-term course of human civilization is one of devolution and deterioration. Contrary to the false notions of the secular humanists and others, society hasn’t been evolving in an upward spiral toward perfection. In moral and spiritual terms, just the opposite is true; the world has been sinking lower and lower—to the point that a globalized culture has been created which is now turning human society into a cesspool of abject degradation. The final stage of this process, which we are now undergoing, will soon result in a dystopia of nightmarish proportions, without divine intervention, that is.

Just as in the Days of Noah

Jesus Christ prophesied that at the very end of the current Age, just before the time of his return, there would be a time of trouble such as the world has never seen. He warned that there would be widespread famines and earthquakes, rampant sin, hatred toward his followers, false prophets, increasing persecution, many signs in the heavens, and a time of great tribulation (see Matthew 24).

Even so, Jesus informed his followers that people will still carry on as usual, not suspecting his imminent return. As Scripture says, “Just as in the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man” (Matthew 24:17). Though the people in Noah’s time were warned, they scoffed at the very idea of impending judgement, up until the very day that Noah and his family entered the ark and the door was shut behind them. 

And then the unimaginable happened—a deluge poured down from the sky, torrents of water broke forth from deep in the earth, and suddenly they were all swept away. Judgement had fallen on the world and it was too late!

The End of the Age of Deception

The true spiritual nature of the system which now rules over humankind is revealed throughout Scripture to be satanic in its origin (see 2 Corinthians 4:4 and 1 John 5:19). It is a bestial, blasphemous entity which is graphically portrayed in scripture as an enemy of God and his people as well as all the inhabitants of the earth (see Daniel 7:7 and Revelation 17:3-5). The system is typified as a devouring beast as well as a notorious harlot seated upon a seven-headed dragon. Clearly, the malevolent force behind it is Satan and his demons.

A vision of a future ‘New World Order’ which doesn’t deal with the need to overthrow the satanic power that rules over this world is birthed in either spiritual ignorance or outright wickedness and is a result of having an unrenewed mind.

The dream of halcyon days in a future New World Order which doesn’t include the complete overthrow of Satan’s evil power over this world is an idea birthed in either spiritual ignorance or wickedness and is a figment of man’s corrupt imagination. In fact, it is a mirage that has taken humankind to the very brink of destruction. 

However, God has a plan, and as the Scripture says, his ways are higher than out ways and his thoughts are higher than our thoughts (Isaiah 55:9). Fortunately, He revealed his plan to avert an ultimate catastrophe that would wipe out humankind as long ago as the time of the prophet Daniel.

The stone made without human hands which struck the feet of the dazzling human statue in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream is Jesus Christ returning with a host of his saints (i.e., his true followers).  They, along with Christian believers still living in the earth at that time, will set things straight. The disarray and dysfunction which humankind had created will be put back into proper order just as God planned from the beginning.

The man-made New World Order will be no more. Man’s attempt at ruling and reigning on this earth without God’s authority will come to an end.   

God’s kingdom will be installed. It will be a time of the restoration of all things (see Acts 3:21). And the glory of the Lord will fill the earth.

So, be sure to tune into our final installment of “An Everlasting Empire” as we get ready for the glorious future the Lord has in store for each one of us who belongs to him!

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Until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

 

An Everlasting Empire – Part 2 of 4

The Lord, in his infinite wisdom, ordained for several empires to rise and fall in the Middle East during the course of history. Because God’s dealings with his people, Israel, are a main theme of the Scriptures, only those empires destined to impact the Hebrew people are included in the Bible’s prophetic panorama. For example, the empire of the Aztecs and that of the Incas aren’t included in prophecy.

 Israel’s Captivity and the Rise of Daniel

The fact is, GOD, the Master, never does anything without revealing his plans to his servants the prophets. (Amos 3:7, MSG)   

God reveals future events to those who love and seek after him.

An astounding example of this spiritual truth occurred several times in the life of the prophet Daniel, who lived more than 2500 years ago, at the time when the Hebrew people were being held captive by the Babylonian Empire.  

Because God’s chosen people continually disobeyed him, the Lord eventually removed his hand of protection over them, allowing his holy city, Jerusalem, to be sacked, and his people to be conquered and carried off in chains to Babylon.  

While God’s people were held captive there, the Babylonian Emperor, King Nebuchadnezzar, had a dream one night which greatly disturbed him. In the morning, not being able to recall his dream, the king summoned his sorcerers, soothsayers and wise men to come before him to recount the dream and give him its interpretation. After they presented themselves, they were unable to meet the king’s audacious demand, causing Nebuchadnezzar to became so enraged that he decreed that all of them be put to death.

Though the Hebrew prophets hadn’t been summoned along with the others, they also were subject to his decree and faced imminent execution. Included among the Hebrews was the prophet Daniel, who, along with his friends, earnestly sought the Lord about the king’s dream. After doing so, God supernaturally imparted the dream to Daniel in a vision and gave him its interpretation as well.

The Mysterious Metallic Man 

So, Daniel went before King Nebuchadnezzar and recounted the dream to him: A colossal statue of a man—dazzling and awesome—had appeared to the king. The head of the statue was gold, its chest and arms were silver, its stomach and thighs were bronze, its legs were iron, and its feet were partly iron and partly clay. 

As the king was observing this tremendous figure, he saw a rock that had been taken from a mountain by an invisible hand, hurtling toward the statue, smashing into its feet, causing the entire figure to be pulverized. Its destruction was so thorough that all of it—the golden head, the silver chest, the bronze thighs, the iron legs, and the composite feet—became like chaff, which was then blown away by the wind, leaving not even a trace behind.  

As the dream concluded, the stone began to increase in size—becoming as large as a mountain and then growing to the point that it filled the entire earth. 

World History and the Global Future

The significance of the dream given to Nebuchadnezzar is far beyond natural human understanding. It provides supernatural insight not only into world history but is a key to comprehending the times in which we’re now living and what will soon be unfolding as the coming Day of the Lord approaches.

Just as Daniel explained the dream’s meaning to the king, each part of the statue symbolizes one of the powerful empires which would dominate the earth.

Each segment of the huge figure represents an empire: the head of gold signified Babylon and the silver, bronze, iron as well as the composite of iron and clay denote succeeding empires.

The final empire, symbolized by an inherently unstable mixture of iron and clay, typifies the age in which we’re now living—disparate people groups, ideologies, and religions—all being artificially melded together in a way that lacks enduring unity or strength. As with the other empires which have preceded it, this final stage of history is governed by false, delusional notions impelled by the forces of darkness. What distinguishes it, however, is that the endemic and irredeemable corruption of this Last Days entity leads to God’s supernatural intervention, symbolized in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream by the rock made without human hands striking the feet of the statue.

Indeed, baseness, perversity, deception and instability are all characteristic of the times in which we’re living. The extent of immorality and corruption seen throughout human society and government across the planet is nearly all-pervasive. In fact, there is ample, conclusive evidence all around us that the last system is not only upon us, it is ready for God’s judgement.

Beloved, it is later than most of us think!

Be sure to stay tuned for our next installment of “An Everlasting Empire” as we gain further prophetic insight into preparing ourselves for what is straight ahead!

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Until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

An Everlasting Empire – Part 1 of 4

God is Still in Charge
The magnificent and gracious God of the Bible is the great Architect and Maker of this world. He has left his imprint everywhere—all around us—plain to see for anyone who isn’t blinded by doubt and unbelief.

Vanity and Rebellion
In its conceit and rebellion against the Lord, humankind, for the most part, views its role on this planet in much more lofty terms than is warranted. For example, the claim that the earth’s climate is changing significantly as a result of human activity defies certain basic scientific facts—such as, just one large volcanic eruption is able to alter the world’s temperature, weather patterns and ozone layer for years—as dramatically happened when Mt. Pinatubo erupted in the Philippines in 1991. Also, regular, natural weather phenomena, such as the El Niño cycle in the Pacific Ocean, affect weather around the world far more than any regular human activity ever could.

But, because people are basically egocentric, they are subject to all-too-frequent bouts of delusion and sophistry. Though the Bible warns us to not think of ourselves more highly than we ought (see Romans 12:3), that sober advice has fallen on deaf ears when it comes to most of humanity.

However ingenious or well-meaning, nearly every human endeavor reflects the foibles and sinful nature of the human race.

The Ebb and Flow of Human Empires
When any nation attempts to build a grandiose empire—as many have attempted—the ultimate result, usually just a few years (or generations) later, is failure and moral decadence. This has been the case with the mighty empires that have come and gone from the world scene over the millennia—from ancient Babylon and Rome to the present day. To be sure, the very soul of these conquering nations has been sacrificed as they violently and cruelly trampled on and pillaged other peoples and nations in the quest for supremacy. 

In more recent times, for example, the once “Great Britain,” whose empire stretched across the planet (said to be an empire on which “the sun never set”), is now a pathetic shadow of its former greatness, particularly in terms of morality. For the most part, “truth has fallen in the street” (see Isaiah 59:14), the moral relativity of political correctness has set in, and the British have seemingly lost their moral compass—to the point that various forms of wickedness, such as abortion and sexual perversion, are not merely tolerated, but have been elevated to a twisted, even special, status of approbation.

The American Empire which superseded that of the British is also on the wane—with its end just over the horizon. What a few years ago was called the “only remaining superpower” will soon be finding its place in the dustbin of history’s empires. The “indispensable nation” will indeed find that it does have a replacement.

The Fate of the New World Order
The Bible shows just where all of this is headed—including the fate of the proposed “New World Order”—which is being foisted upon the nations of the world as a suitable replacement for the declining American Empire. Its blend of an all-inclusive, pantheistic global religion, along with technological and financial control, is intended to result in a “full spectrum dominance” over humanity—with the global masters in charge, of course, “for the benefit of humanity.” It is a “Brave New World” they have in mind, one that has no place for the True and Living God of the Bible. 

This is what is planned for us—but God has already revealed what He has in mind—and what the world’s fate shall be.

Stay tuned… for the second installment of “An Everlasting Empire!” 

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Until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

Joyful and Blessed!

Joyful and Blessed!

Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, who do not hang around with sinners, scoffing at the things of God. Psalm 1:1 

Being careful about what we listen to as well as “how” we hear what’s directed our way may seem like just good common sense to many—but, then again, if you have more than a few years “under your belt,” you’ve probably discovered that “common sense” isn’t all that common!

As the sage words the psalmist penned nearly three thousand years ago warn us, a person should always consider the source of what he or she hears and be careful about the company we are keeping.

Voices All Around

In this modern-day world of electronic media, there is a multitude of voices around us seeking to grab our attention and offer us advice. Though many seem to be like harmless “noise,” of little consequence, nearly all extol what amounts to be the “wisdom of the world”—which is beguilingly attractive to the average person.

While the world is busily trying to mold everyone into a particular image—those who are Christian believers are called to be conformed to Jesus Christ—looking to him, doing as He says, and abiding in his presence.

Bombarded by Propaganda

The world is basically instructing all of us about what is a proper way of thinking and being, and seemingly has our “best interests” at heart, but its “counsel,”—which amounts to little more than propaganda—is, in reality, almost always pernicious. Worldly advice appeals to the carnal nature in each one of us—what “looks good” and usually seems to be the “easy way,” that is, when considered in terms of selfish interests or short-term gain.

Over the years in my Christian walk, I’ve been “put off” by a superficial form of Christianity that never has a cost to it and really amounts to a free membership in a grand “bless me” club. Yes, God does bless his people on a continual basis. There are many benefits to serving him, and we shouldn’t discount or neglect them, by any means.

Stay on Course

But, considering that there is also an enemy of our soul who seeks to destroy those of us who are following after Jesus Christ, blessings are just part of the story. The “accuser of the brethren,” the one who Jesus called “the Father of Lies,” tries to bring difficulty and persecution our way at any opportunity he can get. That’s a part of spiritual reality—and we should accept it as such. Beloved, our blessings come with persecution (see Mark 10:30 and 2 Timothy 3:12)—it’s to be expected!

And the “counsel of the ungodly” serves one main purpose—to divert us from the destiny to which the Lord has called us.

True Contentment and Blessing

Rather, be vigilant and be strengthened by God’s Holy Spirit.

Reject the counsel of the unbelievers who scoff at God’s holy and precious Word and who take obedience to the Lord and service in his kingdom lightly. By doing so, you will find yourself in a place of true contentment and blessing!

The blessing of the LORD makes a person rich, and he adds no sorrow with it. Proverbs 10:12

 

 

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Until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

  

 

He Took Our Pain

As you’re probably aware, drug use— both legal and illegal—has spread far-and-wide across the globe over the last two generations. The use of pharmaceutical drugs to relieve physical pain and psychological afflictions such as anxiety, depression, phobias, and even psychoses has increased to mind-boggling proportions. And of course, illegal drug use has become a deadly serious problem in much of the world. 

One of the reasons for the spiraling increase in drug use is that, as some observers of the human condition have commented, we’ve been living in an “Age of Anxiety.” Indeed; but it’s increasingly apparent that in recent decades matters have taken a turn for the worse. For much of humanity, it has become as if we are now living in something more like an “Age of Pain and Suffering.” That this is true is attested to by skyrocketing sales of pills and potions across the planet to deal with the pain and suffering of all manner of physical and mental disorders and, at the same time, increasing pressure on society to mainstream what some have called “recreational” drug use.  

For many of the world’s inhabitants the “Age of Anxiety” has been morphing into the “Age of Pain and Suffering.”   

And what about you? Have you yourself been suffering? Are you in pain? If so, you should be aware that there is a remedy for your condition that doesn’t involve “Big Pharma” or drugs.

Someone has made a cure with you in mind. In fact, He has made himself available to alleviate your condition. As the prophet Isaiah wrote more than 2700 years ago, a unique person sent by God would one day take our suffering upon himself and bear our pains (see Isaiah 53:4). That person indeed did come along—and his name is Jesus Christ (Yeshua HaMashiach)!

Jesus, our pain medication and our remedy for suffering!

Friend, pharmaceutical remedies have side effects that sometimes can be worse than the original condition. But Jesus Christ can bring healing and wholeness to your life—providing not only what you need to overcome misery and pain—but also with added blessings and benefits.

You don’t have to “go it alone”—Jesus is willing to be there right with you.

All He asks is that you trust in him.

Why not do that right now?

Believing in your heart, say these words: Jesus, I believe you have borne pain and suffering for me so that I myself can experience restoration and wholeness. I place my total being in your hands. Save me. Bring me out of this condition I’m in. My hope and trust is in you. Thank you for hearing my plea and being my Healer and Savior! I ask this in your name. Amen!

Be assured—there is power in heartfelt, faith-filled words. God will see to it that heaven’s power enters into your personal situation of pain and suffering! Believe it…expect it… and you will see!!

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Until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

  

A Worthy Legacy

Legacy—it’s what’s left behind after a person is gone from the scene—passed on to eternity.  

The question is: What kind of legacy will each one of us be leaving? One of having lived a life solely for “I, me, my and mine”grabbing all you can, chasing after money and personal pleasure your whole life? Or perhaps some kind of troublesome legacy like a life filled with resentment and bitterness, having been bound by the chains of a grudge you’ve held against those who’ve wronged you. Or maybe another type of toxic legacysuch as, a life of addiction or immorality, having lived a sin-soaked life which has consumed your very being?  

Hopefully, however, you’re a person who has purposed to leave behind a more worthy, inspirational example for others—one that’s rooted and grounded in the love of God. If so, your legacy will be a blessing to those who’ve known you during your earthly sojourn, as you’ve passed on enduring values and generosity of spirit which can then be transmitted from one generation to the next.

Without a doubt, anyone concerned about their legacy should do their best to leave a material blessing behind, an inheritance, commensurate to the prosperity with which God has graced them during their life. But material “things” shouldn’t be the main focus of a person’s legacy. For even if someone is able to bequeath great wealth to others, their largesse may be squandered in short order if the recipients lack wisdom, character, or godly values.

The baby-boomer generation, of which I’m a part, is fading fast from the scene. As our influence wanes, it behooves us to pass the torch to others. And for each succeeding generation to do likewise.

But are you even carrying a torch? Has your life up to this point even been an example worthy of emulating?

  • Have you stood for truth, God’s truth—or have you lived a life of expediency and compromise?
  • Are you even seeking after God and his ways? Or are you preoccupied with “doing your own thing?”
  • Have you even considered what type of legacy you are leaving behind when you are gone?

Jesus Christ said that God’s children must pick up their cross daily and follow his lead. The Master also told us that loving him means obeying him. 

Living a godly life is a worthy legacy—one that is self-sacrificing and in service to God and his kingdom here on earth, one that hasn’t bent it’s knee to the “god of this world”—the corrupter, the deceiver, who is Satan, the devil. At the very center of such a legacy needs to be “Christ in you, the hope of glory,” (Col 1:27), manifested by your dependence on True and Living God and his presence in your life. If such is the case, your relationship with him will be reflected by living a life of honesty, integrity, faithfulness, and operating in the God-kind of love. Your godly character and actions will then serve as a model, and even a legacy, for those around you.

Are you occupied with bringing “heaven to earth?” If you are a child of the Most High God then God’s light, truth, spirit and power should exude from you no matter what your circumstance. By its very presence within you, the love of God dwelling in your heart will overflow to others and transform the spiritual atmosphere wherever you are and wherever you go.

Now, THAT is a spiritual legacy worth emulating!

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Until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

Grace – Above What We Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine – Part 8 of 8

Reigning in Life

Those who receive the overflow of grace and the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ. (Romans 5:17)

Thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ! (1Corinthians 15:57) 

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We’ve already seen that God’s grace is bestowed on us by a person—the Lord Jesus Christ. In his earthly ministry He showed a matchless ability to operate in grace without limits—for it was by grace He was able to conquer even death and hell.

Some may say, “Well, that’s fine for him, because, after all, He’s the Son of God. But it doesn’t mean much for me, an ‘ordinary’ Christian believer.” But that, my friend, is far from the truth.

The “resurrection power” on Jesus Christ defeated the power of the grave, for all-time. That makes all the difference for us who are in God’s family. Because of what He’s already done, we’re able to obtain eternal life. And yet, there is even more.

Scripture tells us that by his resurrection, Jesus became the “firstborn of many brethren.”[1] So, He is our “elder brother,” in that we who are born-again are also the spiritual offspring of our heavenly Father. As such, the same Bible passage also reveals that we’ve been chosen by God to be like Jesus and partake of his glory. Indeed, the grace of resurrection power is on us as well!

Not only will we be resurrected to everlasting glory at a future time, but we’ve also been given the power to perform mighty spiritual exploits, such as raising the dead, here in this life, just as Jesus did! It’s by faith we obtain the promises of God, and by God’s grace we rule and reign here over the power of spiritual darkness.

Jesus’ authority is now our authority. As He declared to his disciples, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me…[2] When He said “all authority,” Jesus meant that nothing has been left out or remains outside his dominion. That’s part of what it means to operate in “grace without limits.” And, as we’re reminded in several passages in the New Testament, God’s desire is for the grace of Jesus Christ to be with us all! Indeed, our heavenly Father intends for us to reign in life by means of the overflowing, abundant grace of Jesus Christ upon us and operating through us.

The Scriptures also reveal that we who are in God’s family have been “raised up” with our Savior and are now “seated in heavenly places with Christ Jesus.”[3] Being “seated” with him in the heavenlies refers to our spiritual authority in him—here and now, at this time, for “…as He is, so are we in this world.”[4] Though it may be difficult for us to fathom, according to the Word of God, we’ve been given the same spiritual authority that Jesus wielded when He walked here on earth as well as the authority He now exercises as He is seated in heaven—the “capital” of all creation! Let the truth of that spiritual reality sink in. And when you start to understand the mind-boggling implications of our being able to operate in his authority, you will be astounded!

By the power of God’s grace, we are able to transform the spiritual darkness of the world surrounding us, just as, by lighting a candle, we can dispel darkness in the physical realm. By its very nature, light overcomes darkness. Indeed, darkness is incapable of withstanding the power of light. And so it is with us who are called to be “the light of the world.”[5] The light which we bear rules over the force of spiritual gloom, overcoming it by God’s grace. Yes, as the Scripture says, the greater One lives in us![6] This spiritual truth is one of the key aspects of what it means to reign in life through Jesus Christ.

On the other hand, there are many non-believers, who are either unfamiliar with the Scriptures or have rejected the truth of God’s Word, who are blind to the spiritual reality of the need for God’s grace. More than a few of these folks are preoccupied, even obsessed, with selfish ambition and pursuing affluence. They busy themselves greedily seeking after riches, believing that if they could obtain “more” than what they already have they would become masters of their own fate, and thereby reign in life. One phrase that typifies their avaricious bent is their perverse rendering of “Golden Rule” from the Bible namely, to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”     replacing it with their supposedly clever, worldly adage, “He who has the gold, rules.” Even though wealth may be the answer to a few of life’s problems, riches don’t guarantee, for example, that a person will live in health or even be able to tame an unruly household, showing that even with riches a person isn’t reigning over much of anything. Added to their conundrum, is that wealth, including gold, oftentimes proves to be fleeting.[7] Thus, for a person to live according to a value system based on such a flawed precept like “He (or she) who has the gold, rules,” is as foolish as a person who builds a sand castle on a beach close to the waves of an incoming tide.

No, as the Word of God has revealed: ruling and reigning in life is by God’s grace. As we walk in grace his favor is upon us. His grace is sufficient for our every need.[8] Our victory over spiritual darkness is guaranteed for “no weapon formed against us will prosper.”[9] As the Scripture declares, “Let God be true and every man a liar.[10]

My friend, God’s grace is as necessary as the air we breathe. It sustains us and enables us to fulfill our purpose and destiny in life. By God’s grace we’ve been made to be “more than conquerors through him who loved us.”[11] Therein lies our victory. And by his grace we are able to reign in life!

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This eighth installment concludes our series which has unveiled several key Biblical truths concerning grace. And so, until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

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[1] See Romans 8:29,30

[2] Matthew 28:18

[3] See Ephesians 2:6

[4] 1 John 4:17

[5] See Matthew 5:14

[6] See 1 John 4:4

[7] See Proverbs 23:5

[8] 2 Corinthians 12:9

[9] Isaiah 54:17

[10] Romans 3:4

[11] Romans 8:37

Grace – Above What We Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine – Part 7 of 8

Overflowing Grace             

 And God is able to make every grace overflow to you,                                                  so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.  (2 Corinthians 9:8)

But He gives greater grace. That is why Scripture  says: “God sets Himself against the proud and  haughty, but gives grace to those who are humble enough to receive it.”  (James 4:6)

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Though there is nothing you can do to “earn” God’s favor, a person is quite capable of limiting the Lord’s grace in his or her life. When it comes to grace, the insightful adage, “your attitude determines your altitude,” rings true in many ways.

Now, when studying the Scriptures, whenever we discover a phrase or an idea repeated twice or more, we should regard it like a flashing light trying to get our attention. And so, it would behoove a person to pay special attention to the truth which God has repeated. In the case of grace, both the apostle James and the apostle Peter wrote of the same spiritual reality: The Lord resists the proud but gives grace to the humble (see James 4:6, 12 and 1 Peter 5:5).

Self-will, which is rooted in pride, causes God to step back and refrain from pouring out his grace upon an individual. When a person isn’t seeking after the Lord or refuses to submit to his will when it’s been revealed, why would we ever think that He’d empower that person in their waywardness? Newsflash: He will not!

Unfortunately, more than a few Christians intentionally steer clear from delving into the subject of grace because they have the mistaken idea that grace gives a person “a license to sin.” However, nothing could be further from the truth! God’s grace upon us gives us the wherewithal to overcome temptation and sin. It is only by his grace—and not our own self-will or perseverance—that we are able to come out on the victory side against sin.

Both apostles who wrote that humility is the key to receiving greater grace in our lives were referring to a “submitted life”—one in which a person’s deepest desire is to know God and his ways. Another aspect of humility is that a person is “teachable.” Being a “know-it-all” results in a person being “on their own”—because the flow of God’s grace will be thwarted.

On Jesus’ last night with his disciples, in the Upper Room, just prior to being taken away to be crucified, He told them, “”I am the true vine… you are the branches…  you can do nothing without Me. If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you want and it will be done for you” (John 15:1,5,7). God’s enabling power comes from the True Vine, Jesus Christ. God’s grace flows from him to and through his followers, those who abide in him and his Word.

In short, grace comes from a person—the person of Jesus Christ. And as we humble ourselves before the Master, we receive an overflow from his throne room of grace—power from on high!

Be encouraged! No matter what circumstances you may face, if you will seek the Lord with all your heart, He will pour out his grace upon you. And it will meet your every need.

For this reason, many of the letters in the New Testament, as well as the Book of Revelation, conclude with the phrase, “The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you all.” Let it be so in your life! Amen.

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Until the next time, which will be our final installment in this series on grace, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter

Grace – Above What We Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine – Part 6 of 8

God’s Grace Will Make a Way!

Indeed, we have all received grace upon grace from His fullness(John 1:16)

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Led by the Spirit of the Living God, Jesus Christ blazed a trail for every believer to follow. In him we see grace without measure—grace… upon grace… upon grace.

Amazingly, for those who He’s redeemed, and have been adopted into his family, the Lord has provided a generous endowment of grace. Not only do we receive his unmerited favor, but also grace by which we can live an overcoming life.

For each and every one who’s been “saved by grace through faith,” the Lord has made provision to continually “walk in grace”—and even to do the “greater works” which Jesus said his followers would be able to do (see John 14:12). Yes, God’s desire is for all who abide in him to walk in “grace upon grace!

But, it’s clear that many of God’s spiritual offspring are ignorant and misinformed as to God’s true desire for them. As a result, far too many of God’s children operate on a spiritual level far below what He has in mind, not even knowing that He has something much better for them. Instead of being the overcomers in life that the Lord has enabled each one of us to be, they behave like “sheep to the slaughter,” passively accepting the afflictions of their enemy, Satan, who beats them down with adversity and defeat. As a result, instead of walking in the power of God’s grace, they are like captives, adapting to the circumstances which oppress them because they view themselves as victims rather than victors—all because of their ignorance of God’s precious and holy Word! As the prophet Hosea wrote, God’s people “…are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6).

God’s grace will make a way where there is no way. It will not only transform us but will change our circumstances as well. But there is one thing we need to do: extend our faith toward our heavenly Father. When we do this, we activate his grace which is available to meet our every need. Indeed, trusting in God, and in his goodness and power, is capable of moving mountains!

On the other hand, ignorance of the magnitude of God’s grace, and his willingness to make it available on our behalf, inevitably means that the “world” will have its way with us. And, as the Scripture tells us, “Satan is the god of this world” (see 2 Corinthians 4:4), which means that we will have succumbed to being under Satan’s “thumb.”

A believer who is ignorant of God’s grace is like a person who is living from paycheck to paycheck because he doesn’t know that a rich relative has made a huge deposit into his account. Even though the fellow could draw untold riches from his account at any time, because he doesn’t know what’s in his account, he struggles to survive as best he can, living on “barely get along” street. All because he hasn’t bothered to check what’s in his account.

One thing is for sure: all of us need to renew our minds with the Word of God! We also have to get with God’s program—which us far above anything we could have imagined ourselves!

Meditate on the Word. Spend time in God’s presence. Put the Word in your mouth. Be inspired and motivated by the fire of the Holy Spirit.

Do these things and you live in greater grace and inexorably move toward God’s best in your life!

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Until the next time, walk in the Spirit… and be a blessing!

Dr. Peter