Sunday, October 30, 2011

The communication problem which Christians and non Christians share, alike

Without a doubt, both Christians and non Christians share the “sin problem.” Both groups are sinners, not only by “nature” [Isaiah 53:6] but by practice [Romans 3:23 ; Romans 5:12] However, there is a huge difference – that being, that the one group has become “regenerate,” while the other group remains, “unregenerate.”

Creator Christ was sinlessly born into human flesh, lived, suffered, died and rose from the dead. Those believing souls who embrace this living God, as the perfect substitute / sacrifice for their inbred and continued sin, -- those, are the “regenerate.” They have been born from above, by the grace and mercy of a loving God. [Ephesians 2:1-9] Those souls who do not believe [accept] the free gracious and (forgiving gift) of God, in the person and work of Jesus Christ, -- they are the “unregenerate.” Hence, when they pass on [die], they will not “qualify” for a place in the Triune God’s perfect heaven. They instead, will have chosen to go their own way, without a Savior. They will be left with having to spend their eternity in a Christless abode – in the place of existence that is not “life” everlasting, but, rather, “death,” everlasting. [Hell]

The common and destructive communication problem which both Christians and non Christians, share

It is often the pathetic case that human communication becomes all “screwed up.” To be sure, human communication is best “had,” when people speak face to face and do so with ample time. Those communicators (“senders”) and respondents who act as if they are “double parked” do not enjoy the benefits of thoroughly thrashing things [issues] through. It takes both time and effort for clear communication and understanding.

But what severely hampers communication and understanding – even when there is ample time involved for such interchange, is the faulty use of human reasoning [logic]. I witness this often as I participate in online forums. People will often commit the “logic sin” of “generalization.” It is easy to spot when the one person will use words, such as, “only,” “never,” “none, “ “no.” You will often witness these same people further generalize by using the words, “all,” or “always.”

And, what further diminishes quality human discourse, is when you have people talking about an issue with little or no understanding about the issue. In other words, their knowledge of what they are talking about is seriously limited. Hence, discussion between two individuals can be further hampered.

Giving and taking offense


What is, perhaps, more damaging to human communication is the “giving” and “taking” of offense because reality by either the “sender” or “responder,” is distorted. I like what Dr. Martin Luther stated about the "giving and taking of offense:"

"An offense is something that is said or done whereby our opinion of God and men is distorted; and an offense is active when I give it, passive when I take (patior) it." [Luther]


Obviously people give offense when they needlessly, intentionally and maliciously precipitate some sort of word or action, thereby causing the person to whom their offense is directed, discouragement, discomfort and personal bodily and / or, emotional hurt and harm. But, for purposes of this message, and, its remainder, I will focus on the needless "taking" of offense.

People become offended by all sorts of reasons, - and, often, needlessly, so! And, consequently, they "think" they have been legitimately sinned against, (when such is not the case). They will then accuse the person to whom they think directed the (supposed) offense, and expect apologies to be forthcoming.

One of the most common reasons why some people become offended, is, when they second guess the person, who [they think] gave the offense. In our politically charged culture, liberal extremists will often accuse other people of racist remarks, when, in fact, they skew the reality of what is actually said, and take upon themselves the [their] perceived offense. In other words, there is no legitimate offense, but only one that is politically motivated and manufactured, (by liberal extremists and their accomplice liberal mainstream extremist media) so as to further a certain propaganda aim and advantage.

People give and take offense for all sorts of wrong reasons. Often left out of the communication mix, is that neither person, has at his (or her) disposal, the complete facts of an issue. Nor, can they truly claim to know the intentions and motivations of the person with whom they take exception [to]. Hence, it is easy for both sides in the communication process, to distort reality and to misunderstand one another.

One of history’s most prominent examples of “taking offense”


Perhaps, the most egregious example of the communication problem of taking offense, is what happened and still happens everyday with peoples’ perception and rejection of Jesus Christ. We are told in the Scriptures, that Christ, “came to His own and his own, received Him not.” [Gospel of Mark 6:3 ; Gospel of John 1:11] Human history is replete with humanity being offended, and rejecting the Savior, whose purpose was to suffer and die as the holy and just God’s sacrifice for human sin. Isaiah 53:1-12

The unregenerate sinner is always offended at Christ

Have you ever witnessed a swimmer attempting to rescue a drowning person? Oftentimes the drowning person, in the midst of his panic, will resist the rescuer’s well meaning efforts and end up drowning both himself and his would-be rescuer, by being wildly controlled by sheer panic. The one to be rescued, resists the rescuer’s efforts and instead, becomes to the rescuer as a sinking large rock, clasping with all his gripping strength, upon the rescuer. As a sad result, they end up, both, perishing.

To you – unregenerate sinner, -- you need rescuing from your damning sins – whether you realize that reality, or not. But, your very sinful nature, will not allow you to willingly gently clasp your Creator and Savior Christ. By your everyday unrepentant attitude and sinning nature, you will fight Him all the way to your dying (and, damning) last breath. You will resist His loving efforts to draw you to Himself. [1 Corinthians 2:14 ; Ephesians 2:1-9] You will reject His messengers the Good Lord sends into your life who communicate Christ, to you. Luke 16:19-31

Only through the gracious and omnipotent act of God’s Holy Spirit, will you come to realize your pathetic and damning condition. [Ephesians 2:1-9] Only through His act of regeneration will you be able to admit that you are a damnable sinner, needing, divine rescue! John 3:3 ; Colossians 2:13 ; John 5:21

Note: See also: "Christian Faith -- How does a soul acquire it?" -- What is the "New Birth," -- or, what is commonly called "Regeneration," or, the Christian "Conversion" process?


Friend, may you, by God’s Grace, through faith, come to accept the Triune God’s divine revelation. May humble yourself to realize that the Scriptures are His gift for your very life and soul. May you, [by God’s grace] also, come to realize that with His divine revelation, there is no distortion of reality. May you come to humbly realize that even if you do not understand all of the Triune God’s divine revelation, that ignorance on your part is not valid reason to reject His loving entreaties to you. May you finally not "take offense" in the Christ who came to save and rescue your soul from eternal damnation.

Amen.

Related Scriptures [below] -- Intended to be utilized in a simple worship format:

Also: For a couple of other (more formal) worship formats:

The Order of Morning Service
The Order of Matins


Related Scriptures To the Above Message

Isaiah 53:1-12 -- The world of humanity rejects the Savior

Luke 16:19-31 -- The overpowering strength of unbelief in the sinner

_________________________________

Of Whom Does the Prophet Speak" -- by Victor Buksbazen -- Isaiah 53:1-12 -- an in-depth view of and the prophecy of Christ, hundred of years before his birth. Isaiah 53:1-12 underscores the truthfulness of Divine Revelation as exemplified in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.
______________________________________

Pastor (emeritus) Nathan Bickel

Please also note:

The "Words in Season" topical messages and related worship format are not intended to discourage or replace the Christian worship and assembly of Christians at their particular places of church worship. As this website's author, it is my prayer and hope, that many souls will find the topical messages, related worship format and other material, a useful and valuable Christian resource.

The Christian Faith: Parts 1-3


Saturday, October 22, 2011

Rejection

Our modern society has become so sophisticated that there is (supposedly) no more need for acknowledgement of (inherent / original) sin or even "actual" (obvious) sin. So sophisticated our culture has become, that there isn't even the desperate need to "repent" (turn away) from sin. In fact, our civilization has "progressed" to the point that sin doesn't need to exist anymore. It only exists as a "figment of an over-active Christian imagination."

Hence, there is no longer any need to talk about sin or find a way to deal with something which the culture either ignores, disavows, or just, plainly ridicules. After all, when bad things happen, there are multiple causes and specific reasons, so much so, that psychiatrists have a thick medical resource book chucked full of all kinds of fanciful and technical names to describe this or that condition or mental malady "disease." There is no need to personally confess (so-called) sins to God, Himself; publicly; privately; or, to other Christians; or, to a pastor or priest. All a distressed person needs to do, is either seek out the local mental health clinic; hire a psychiatrist (or, "analyst' / counselor) -- or, commit his or her life into the keeping of a "life coach."

Furthermore, there is no need to investigate the claims of Christ and the Old Testament Hebrew Scriptures, which specifically prophesied Christ, several hundreds of years before His arrival. There is no need to investigate the Christian New Testament which bears witness to Christ's life, death, burial and Resurrection. There is no need (so the prevailing cultural consensus), to take seriously what Christ stated about sin, repentance, forgiveness, judgment, hell, or even, heaven. There is no need for all of this -- except to question and to expose part of Holy Scripture for Hollywood entertainment and skepticism.

Modern Culture will capriciously use the Divine Revelation, and, (at the same time) dishonestly, despise it


Some time ago there was marked an assault opon the historic Hebrew and Christian Scriptures, with the announced book and soon-to-be released [movie] TV “Discovery” piece, about the (supposed) burial site of Jesus Christ and His family.

Isn't it a "hoot" that unbelieving skeptics who ridicule the Christian Faith and the historic documents of the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures, -- isn't it ironic, that these same skeptics always conveniently utilize only portions (pickings and choosings), of The Scriptures, to establish their springboards of ridicule and skepticism -- and then, (adding insult to injury), cloak their "investigative" reporting, book or movie, as, a "documentary?"

Distressed people generally look in the wrong direction to deal with their various depressions and rejections


It is no small wonder why distressed people (sinners of all degrees and mental conditions) do not look to the only source which can give them eternal relief. Rather, the distressed populace of our culture will mistakenly turn to various "modern" forms of relief to assuage the guilt and rejection of a heavy soul. [“Looking for love in all the wrong places.”]

Everyone truly desires to be loved, to be a part of a close knit association which will be, accepting. When, this common human trait / desire, to be accepted and loved, is marred by activities, events, situations, circumstances, (and, shall we dare say, “sin,”), -- there is the common malady that surges through, (oftentimes in "locomotive" fashion), into a person's inmost being. That awful feeling and reality (malady) is: "Rejection."

Rejection can be varied (of different sorts)


Rejection can take on many forms. One of the most prevalent forms of rejection, is the feeling of not being loved; that persuasive feeling of having to stand alone in one’s circumstance, situation, community and world. This rejection can "eat away" at a person's mental and physical well-being -- so much so, that people who feel rejected, are easily liable to withdraw, become hostile, depressed, do drugs, or just plain, take their own life.

During the Easter season, I find myself playing one of my favorite CD's -- "Handel's Messiah." My father once made the comment about this classic piece of music: “That if there ever was anything [Biblically] ‘inspired’ outside of Holy Scripture; it had to be ‘Handel's Messiah’ musical masterpiece.” My older brother must have remembered Dad's statement, because he made sure that Dad had the recording of this magnificent musical masterpiece, playing during the week long vigil at Dad's hospital deathbed.

Even though we admired my father (and mother) as the perfect “Ozzie and Harriet” model parents, Dad was still a sinner in word and deed –- first, by birth; second, by practice. "Handel’s Messiah" – because it is all Scripture, set to high class music, gave my father, I am sure, the extra comfort to die a more peaceful and blessed death.

Ultimate Rejection -- Experienced, by Christ


One of Dad’s favorite selections in Handel’s Messiah, was, the soprano’s part: “He [Christ] is despised, and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief.” [Isaiah 53.3] The universal reality is, that God, in the God-man person of Jesus Christ, truly, fully and completely, experienced, ultimate rejection.

This experience of Christ, being rejected, was no ordinary rejection. This rejection (according to the Gospel record and the prophetic Isaiah 53:1f and Psalm 22:1f chapters), was the rejection of family, community, race, country and, cosmos. This rejection was also from God, the Father, Himself. It was an eternal rejection for damnable human sin, which resulted in Christ, sacrificing Himself, for His creation, and, (actually) experiencing the punishment for sin - hell itself!

You who are rejected, who have “bought into” the latest aberrant fads and fleeting fashions of the culture – you who seek relief from your heavy burden of guilt, sin and shame:


Recognize the eternal Christ, who was “delivered up because of our offenses” [Romans 4.25] and sacrificed for our sins. Confess your sins before the Lord and turn (repent) from them. Believe Christ’s Words: “I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness.” [John 12:46] -- (thereby avoiding the ultimate eternal rejection of self inflicted eternal damnation). John 3.15-21

And, if all this is foreign and strange to you, realize that the Triune God who created you, [Genesis 1.26] can illumine your mind and heart – so that you can (trustingly) and truly believe in Him. [John 1:1f] Seek His Revelation in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures. “So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10.17


Amen.

Related Scriptures [below] -- Intended to be utilized in a simple worship format:

Also: For a couple of other (more formal) worship formats:

The Order of Morning Service
The Order of Matins


Related Scriptures To the Above Message

Isaiah 53:1f / Psalm 22:1f – The rejected Christ Messiah / Savior, prophesied

Psalm 118.22 -- The Messianic [Christ] prophesied. The “Savior ‘stone’” rejected.

Gospel: Matt. 21.42 / Luke 17.25 – The rejected Christ, fulfills (Old Testament) Messianic prophecy

Epistle: 1 Peter 2.4 – Christ, the “living stone” – rejected, but chosen of God


_________________________________

Of Whom Does the Prophet Speak" -- by Victor Buksbazen -- Isaiah 53:1-12 -- an in-depth view of and the prophecy of Christ, hundred of years before his birth. Isaiah 53:1-12 underscores the truthfulness of Divine Revelation as exemplified in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.
______________________________________

Pastor (emeritus) Nathan Bickel

Please also note:

The "Words in Season" topical messages and related worship format are not intended to discourage or replace the Christian worship and assembly of Christians at their particular places of church worship. As this website's author, it is my prayer and hope, that many souls will find the topical messages, related worship format and other material, a useful and valuable Christian resource.

The Christian Faith: Parts 1-3

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Only by God's Grace can the sinner come to realize the illuminating truth about his pathetic soul

One of the most amazing sayings of Christ, (as recorded in the Christian 4 Gospels), Christ's statement to certain Jewish people [John 5:1f] who continually hounded Him during His 3 year ministry:

“But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.” John 5:40


On another occasion, Christ said:

“And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” John 3:19-21

My Past Academic Misunderstanding

During my academic schooling years, I was accustomed to think (erroneously) that people (by and large), were repelled by the Christian Message and Faith, because they were generally ignorant of the Christian Religion’s unparalleled historical roots, oftentimes substantiated by other Christian evidences, such as archaeology.

I would oftentimes think that a person could be convinced of the historical fact of Christ, by logical persuasion and intellectual argument. By achieving that process, I falsely believed that such and such a person, then, was well underway to doing the best thing for his precious soul, and thereby in the end process, avoid the just eternal punishment for his personal sin, meted out by a holy and just Creator God.

However, my reasoning was not only skewed, but false. That fallacious reasoning did not match up with Christ’s own words, as referenced and quoted above. Even though souls could come back from their eternal abode of perdition, to convince people on earth of the stark realities of the hereafter and the horrors of hell, humans will not be persuaded to change their thinking and behavior and to put their faith in Christ. Luke 16:19-31 – especially Luke 16:27-31

Even at death’s door, people will generally live their remaining moments as they have always lived


Death bed conversions are few and far between. I believe that they are as scarce as hen's teeth. That is one of the reasons why the Good Lord urges: “Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near." Isaiah 55:6-7

One of the worst civilian airline crashes in history took place on the Canary Islands in 1977 when two Boeing 747’s collided. I remember hearing Dr. James D. Kennedy, one Sunday. In his sermon message he related how many of the passengers reacted upon the fiery impact. He stated that many of them were heard to have spoken their last, profusely cursing. Rather than making their “peace with God,” in their final earthly moments, some were cursing God – living their last gasping breaths, in the smoking inferno, in the same way they had always (pathetically) lived their lives.

The sad fact remains – people will clasp and grasp their personal sin until their life’s end. By and large most people will not recognize the present and eternal (damning) reality of unforgiven sin in their lives. They will take that sin to their deaths and enter a godless, wretched and hellish eternity -- thinking that they do not qualify for holy Creator God’s, just accounting. Others, alike, are also without a clue, having denied their created existence -- they deny the very God that rules all.

Friend, your priceless soul is at stake


Friend, even if you have the worst impression of Christian people, the Christian religion and the Christian holy book, the Bible; you owe it to your priceless soul to read the words of Christ. Of all the books in the world – past and present, the 4 Gospels are the most important.

Don’t allow someone’s opinion or interpretation to formulate your thinking about Jesus Christ, what He stood for, said and accomplished. Don’t allow yourself to be sweet talked into thinking , believing and accepting that you and your human ancestors evolved from some lower form of life. Don’t allow anyone to belittle or demean your eternal and priceless soul.

Come to realize that you are a sinner, by God’s standards – not your own. After all, His standards are the only ones, which ultimately count. Even if your mind cannot fathom many realities, expose your sinful life to that of Christ’s sinless existence. Read those Gospels and pay particular attention to the prophesied fulfillment of Christ’s birth, life, death, burial and resurrection from the dead (documented in human history). Regard your soul’s future destination with "kid gloves." By God's Merciful Grace you will be able to cry out to Christ that he “cast out your sin and enter in” and “be born in” you today! John 1:12-13 and John 3:1-21 – especially John 3:3


Realize as the thief crucified by Christ, that you have nothing to offer, but your sorry soul and life. [Gospel of Luke 23:39-43] Recognize as did the "Lost Son" [Luke 15:11-32] that you have “sinned against heaven" [Luke 15:17 -19] Come as a pauper to God -- believe His gracious Gospel call. Believe that message of forgiveness and come to repentance. John 3:14-21] ; Acts 3:19 ; Acts 17:16-31

Come to Christ that you might have true life and that you might have life, everlasting. John 3:16-17 ; John 11:25 ; Mark 8:35-37


Amen.


Related Scriptures [below] -- Intended to be utilized in a simple worship format:

Also: For a couple of other (more formal) worship formats:




Some Important [Defining] "Sin" Scriptures:

Genesis 3:1f -- Mankind's fall into sin

Psalm 1:1-6 – The way of the righteous and the way of the unrighteous

Psalm 51:5 -- A Sinner is a sinner by birth -- [commonly referred to, as, "Original Sin"]

Romans 5:12 -- Sinners, not only by birth, but also, by "Inheritance"

Genesis 6:5 -- Sinners, from the beginning of time.....

Matthew 15:15-20 -- Christ explains about sin

New Testament Christian Scriptures relating about the Divine Rescue from sin and its damning eternal consequences:

John 3:1-21 – Christ must illuminate the needy and sinful human soul. In the Greek language, the phrase in John 3:3, is being born “from above.” This correlates with John 1:12-13. Even though a sinner is commanded to repent and believe, -- that process initiates from the good and gracious action of a loving Triune God.

1 Peter 1:21 and 1 Peter 1:23 – The Lord’s initiating action at work in the believing soul Ephesians 2:1-10 --The sinner who is "dead" in sin, cannot help himself -- not 5% or even 50%. It takes the full 100% action of the gracious Triune God to affect a spiritual awakening.


_________________________________

Of Whom Does the Prophet Speak" -- by Victor Buksbazen -- Isaiah 53:1-12 -- an in-depth view of and the prophecy of Christ, hundred of years before his birth. Isaiah 53:1-12 underscores the truthfulness of Divine Revelation as exemplified in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.
______________________________________

Pastor (emeritus) Nathan Bickel

Please also note:

The "Words in Season" topical messages and related worship format are not intended to discourage or replace the Christian worship and assembly of Christians at their particular places of church worship. As this website's author, it is my prayer and hope, that many souls will find the topical messages, related worship format and other material, a useful and valuable Christian resource.

The Christian Faith: Parts 1-3

Saturday, October 8, 2011

How "good" does a person have to be, to obtain heaven?

The Gospel of Matthew 19:13-30 (in context), records the account about a wealthy man who asked Jesus Christ: “What good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?” [Matthew 13:16] His question is, essentially the same question, with which people, on their death beds, often torment themselves.

Why do people torment themselves on their death beds?

To the Christian disciple, this question need not apply. But, for the vast majority of this world's population, this question does, indeed, apply. Why? Because Jesus Christ, Himself, stated, that the road to eternal life [heaven] is narrow and "few there be that find it.” Matthew 7:13-29

The sad and pathetic reality is, that most people will be inwardly tormented on their deathbeds. If they are physically conscious of their impending death they will be anguished with the gnawing questions: "Am I going to be good enough to make the grade? Will I end up in heaven or, will I end up in hell? Is this, all there is?"

The rich man who encountered Christ, instinctively knew that he was missing something of vast importance - Matthew 19:13-30

The wealthy man who encountered Christ would not have sought him out and enquired of Christ, if he did not feel he was missing something of vast importance. Somehow he came to the stark realization that when it was his time to die, he would not be able to take his wealth and comfort of living, with him. He was apprehensive. The thought of the hereafter troubled him and sparked his question. And, his question to Christ, was no surprise.

This rich man’s money, no doubt “bought” him significant influence. He was able to command his own earthly circumstances and arrange his own affairs to live a very comfortable existence. Hands on money, stored away revenue and commanding influence was at his ready disposal, - but, all that would do him no good in the hereafter.

This week the world experienced the passing [death] of a very wealthy man

Steve Jobs was well known, world-wide, for his creative genius. He died last week from complications of the common and dreaded disease of cancer. His passing sparked continued praise in the mainstream media, as numerous news people and commentators paid their respects to a man who changed the world by harnassing computer technology.

One lone commentary about the wealthy and influential, Steve Jobs, that caught my attention, had, as its caption, a very politically incorrect, title. Amidst all the global praise for one of the world’s richest and influential people, this author had the courage to ask a most very important question – and, to follow that question up with some very thoughtful and loving concerns:

“Is Steve Jobs in Hell:?” – by Johnathan Cousar – freedomtorch.com http://freedomtorch.com/blogs/3/3889/is-steve-jobs-in-hell

How good does a person have to be, to obtain heaven?

The wealthy man spoken of in the historical Gospel narrative, asked the sinless and eternal Christ: “What good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?” [Matthew 13:16] And, then the conversation with Christ ensued.

In summary, Christ’s interaction with this rich person, exposed this wealthy man’s personal deception. The rich man actually thought that he was good enough to qualify for heaven because he thought that he had kept all of God’s Ten Commandments. But, somehow, he instinctively knew he lacked one more thing. Christ did not point out to him what this man mistakenly believed. [A person, convinced against his own will, is of the same opinion, still]

Rather, Christ challenged the wealthy man to give up what was dearest to his heart – his numerous earthly monetary treasures, and, then, follow Christ, as His disciple. In the short conversation that Christ had with this wealthy man, Christ stripped him bare of his pretenciousness. Christ trumpets His own holiness and the wealthy man, falls short of acting upon his own sinfulness. And, instead of throwing himself upon the forgiving mercies of God and following Christ, he sadly walks away.

The wealthy man, whom Christ encountered, was schizophrenic. On one hand, he realized that heaven was out of his reach. On the other hand, he was of the false notion that he must "do" something to inherit eternal life. The man must have known that heaven was something very special and that it was something outside of his reach of grasp. That is why he used the word, "inherit." Inheriting something as an heir is an action result that is a free gift. Yet, the rich man's sinful human nature schizophrenically overruled him and influenced him to desire to contribute something to gain his future soul's eternal rest.

Scores of people today are no better off than the wealthy man who encountered Christ. They convince themselves that they must somehow tally up some brownie points - that they must do something to earn heaven for themselves. They cannot accept that God's forgiveness, grace and favor and His reward of heaven's glories, are totally, a free gift, entirely, [100%] purchased by the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ who came to live, die and rise from the dead to cancel out God's just punishment of sin in a forever hell.

Friend - Are you deceiving [lying to] yourself as the weathy man who met with Christ?

Scripture tells us that there is not a just man upon earth who does good and sins not. [Ecclesiastes 7:20] The Scriptural Revelation is clear when it states that human nature is “dead in sin.” [Ephesians 2:1] That, blanket observational reality, includes you and me, the whole human race, past, present and future. Romans 3:23

However, your life need not end with you asking the question if you are "good enough" for heaven’s glories. Your life need not end with you dying in your sins. Your life need not end with you deceiving yourself that you had paved your own way to heaven by your own intentions, efforts and goodness. Isaiah 64:6 ; Proverbs 20:9 ; Isaiah 53:6

The Bible tells us that the Messiah Christ, was God’s sinless Messenger of Word and Action, who came to die for our sinful existence – completely taking upon Himself (in our place) God’s future eternal punishment [hell] for all our sins of thought, word and deed, committed against His holy Commandments. Christ’s sinless birth, life and suffering, death and resurrection are the Triune God’s loving gift for you. Heaven cannot be the holy heaven it is, with sinful souls. Hence, the blood sacrifice of Christ to cover all your earthly sins. It is only through Christ’s sacrificial blood and His righteousness [holiness] that you will ever experience eternal life, rather than eternal death.

May God’s Holy Spirit move you to believe and to receive Christ’s gift of forgiveness for you. [John 1:11-13] May you be clothed with Christ’s robes (garments) of holiness. Matthew 22:1-14 ; Philippians 3:8-9 ; 1 Corinthians 1:30 ; 2 Corinthians 5:21 ; Galatians 2:16 ; Galatians 3:11 ; 2 Peter 1:1 May God the Holy Spirit grant you the faith to believe in Christ!

Amen.

Related Scriptures [below] -- Intended to be utilized in a simple worship format:

Also: For a couple of other (more formal) worship formats:

The Order of Morning Service
The Order of Matins


Old Testament:

Psalm 1:1f – The Righteous and the Wicked compared and contrasted

New Testament

Matthew 22:1-14 – Christ’s parable of the wedding feast and the man who had no wedding garment

Philippians 3:7-9 – Clothed with Christ’s righteousness

Ephesians 2:1-10 – How the righteousness of Christ becomes the believing soul’s

Other Scriptures:

Matthew 7:13-21
John 10:1-18
John 3:14-21


Note: The following hymn lyrics (verses) explain that as sinners, our condition is so fallen, that we cannot attain heaven without the grace of God, totally, based upon the work and merits of Jesus Christ:

"Salvation unto us has Come"

1. Salvation unto us has come
By God's free grace and favor;
Good works cannot avert our doom,
They help and save us never.
Faith looks to Jesus Christ alone,
Who did for all the world atone;
He is our one Redeemer.


2. What God did in His Law demand
And none to Him could render
Caused wrath and woe on every hand
For man, the vile offender.
Our flesh has not those pure desires
The spirit of the Law requires,
And lost is our condition.


3. It was a false, misleading dream
That God His Law had given
That sinners should themselves redeem
And by their works gain heaven.
The Law is but a mirror bright
To bring the inbred sin to light
That lurks within our nature.


4. From sin our flesh could not abstain,
Sin held its sway unceasing;
The task was useless and in vain,
Our gilt was e'er increasing.
None can remove sin's poisoned dart
Or purify our guileful heart,-
So deep is our corruption.


5. Yet as the Law must be fulfilled
Or we must die despairing,
Christ came and hath God's anger stilled,
Our human nature sharing.
He hath for us the Law obeyed
And thus the Father's vengeance stayed
Which over us impended.


6. Since Christ hath full atonement made
And brought to us salvation,
Each Christian therefore may be glad
And build on this foundation.
Thy grace alone, dear Lord, I plead,
Thy death is now my life indeed,
For Thou hast paid my ransom.


7. Let me not doubt, but trust in Thee,
Thy Word cannot be broken;
Thy call rings out, "Come unto Me!"
No falsehood hast Thou spoken.
Baptized into Thy precious name,
My faith cannot be put to shame,
And I shall never perish.


8. The Law reveals the guilt of sin
And makes men conscience-stricken;
The Gospel then doth enter in
The sinful soul to quicken.
Come to the cross, trust Christ, and live;
The Law no peace can ever give,
No comfort and no blessing.


9. Faith clings to Jesus' cross alone
And rests in Him unceasing;
And by its fruits true faith is known,
With love and hope increasing.
Yet faith alone doth justify,
Works serve thy neighbor and supply
The proof that faith is living.


10. All blessing, honor, thanks, and praise
To Father, Son, and Spirit,
The God that saved us by His grace,-
All glory to His merit!
O Triune God in heaven above,
Who hast revealed Thy saving love,
Thy blessed name be hallowed.


Note: Source of the above hymn lyrics - TLH / CPH. 1941

Click here to lead you to the listed hymn and its musical tune

_________________________________

Of Whom Does the Prophet Speak" -- by Victor Buksbazen -- Isaiah 53:1-12 -- an in-depth view of and the prophecy of Christ, hundred of years before his birth. Isaiah 53:1-12 underscores the truthfulness of Divine Revelation as exemplified in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.
______________________________________

Pastor (emeritus) Nathan Bickel

Please also note:

The "Words in Season" topical messages and related worship format are not intended to discourage or replace the Christian worship and assembly of Christians at their particular places of church worship. As this website's author, it is my prayer and hope, that many souls will find the topical messages, related worship format and other material, a useful and valuable Christian resource.

The Christian Faith: Parts 1-3

Sunday, October 2, 2011

God’s Judgment against the Wicked and The Admonition and Warning to God's Children, Not to Fret over the Workers of Iniquity

Even though it seems that the ungodly
prosper and have no difficult life's "row to
hoe," God's promise is sure to come. Their
unrighteous ways put them in slippery
places. As Psalm 73:1f says: "....They will
soon be cut off."

Do you become frustrated and discouraged because of the utter foolishness and evil in your community, society, culture and world? If you do, and if you are a genuine disciple of Christ, there is a "divine pronouncement remedy" for your frustrations and discouragements:

Do not fret because of evildoers, nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Psalm 37:1-2
The descriptive word, “righteous” appears approximately 15 times with a few variations. Those variations, (of the “righteous”) include the words, “upright,” and the “meek.”

God, Himself, (through whichever means He chooses) will effect the just punishment and demise of the “workers of Iniquity” [wicked]. Read and listen to the Lord’s promises, concerning the destiny of the wicked:

Finally, in this life and the hereafter, may you have become one of His righteous!

Psalm 37:1f is a psalm, regarded to have been penned by King David. It is 40 verses long. No less than 15 times, with a few variation descriptions, this psalm refers to the “wicked.” Other names for the wicked are: “evildoers” and “workers of iniquity.”

Psalm 37:1f – A psalm of hope, comfort and instruction for the Christian believer

Why is this psalm Scripture such an encouragement for the weary Christian? There is the clear admonition and warning not to “fret” [worry and fuss] about the wicked. The Good Lord simply does not desire for his children to become “bent out of shape” because of the wicked and their wickedness which permeates the culture.


Verse: 2 -- For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb.

Verses 9-10 -- For evildoers shall be cut off; but those who wait on the Lord, they shall inherit the earth. For yet a little while and the wicked shall be no more; indeed, you will look carefully for his place, but it shall be no more.

Verse: 13 -- The Lord laughs at him, for He sees that his day is coming.

Verse: 15 -- Their sword shall enter their own heart, and their bows shall be broken.

Verse 17 -- For the arms of the wicked shall be broken,

Verse 20 -- But the wicked shall perish; and the enemies of the LORD, like the splendor of the meadows, shall vanish. Into smoke they shall vanish away.

Verse 22 -- But those cursed by Him shall be cut off.

Verse 28 -- But the descendants of the wicked shall be cut off.

Verse 34 -- When the wicked are cut off, you shall see it.

Verse 35-36 -- I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a native green tree. Yet he passed away, and behold, he was no more; indeed I sought him, but he could not be found.

Verse 38 -- But the transgressors shall be destroyed together; the future of the wicked shall be cut off.

Why would it be a “source” of hope and comfort to the Christian believer to be assured by God, Almighty, that the wicked will finally, “get theirs?” [be punished] In a past topical message, I dealt with this issue”:

“……..Without contradiction and without rejoicing over the eternal damnation of the wicked -- those unrighteous enemies of Christ, the Christian disciple can find sweet comfort in the reality that God is true to His Word and that God ultimately punishes the wicked and gives them their chosen destiny! It is a sweet relief to know that the unrighteous will not inhabit heaven to wreak havoc anymore upon the righteous. It is a sweet relief to know that the wicked will not contaminate the believer’s existence anymore. This is not rejoicing in the pathetic demise of the unbelieving wicked. It is rather, a triumph of victory that the dear soul who trusts Christ, is finally without strife and in a perfect place that cannot molest or destroy his sweet communion and companionship with His Righteous God and Savior.” --


Rather than becoming bent out of shape (fretting) over the wicked, the Lord admonishes the righteous to:

Verse 3 -- Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.

Verse 4 -- Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.

Verse 5 -- Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass. He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday.

Verse 7 -- Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him; do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.

Verse 8 -- Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; do not fret—it only causes harm.

The Lord’s promises and blessings to the righteous

Verse 9 -- But those who wait on the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.

Verse 11 -- But the meek shall inherit the earth, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.

Verse 16 -- A little that a righteous man has is better than the riches of many wicked.

Verse 17 -- But the Lord upholds the righteous.

Verses 18-19 -- The Lord knows the days of the upright, and their inheritance shall be forever. They shall not be ashamed in the evil time, and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied

Verse 22 -- For those blessed by Him shall inherit the earth,

Verse 23 -24 -- The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, and He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; for the Lord upholds him with His hand.

Verses 25-26 -- I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread. He is ever merciful, and lends; and his descendants are blessed.

Verse 28 -- For the Lord loves justice, and does not forsake His saints; they are preserved forever,

Verse 29 -- The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell in it forever.

Verses 30-31 -- The mouth of the righteous speaks wisdom, and his tongue talks of justice. The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide.

Verses 30-32 -- The wicked watches the righteous, and seeks to slay him. The Lord will not leave him in his hand, nor condemn him when he is judged.

Verse 34 -- Wait on the Lord, and keep His way, and He shall exalt you to inherit the land; when the wicked are cut off, you shall see it.

Verse 37 -- Mark the blameless man, and observe the upright; for the future of that man is peace.

Verses 39-40 -- But the salvation of the righteous is from the Lord; He is their strength in the time of trouble. And the Lord shall help them and deliver them; He shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him.

What is the major difference between the “Righteous” and the “Wicked?” [Note, also topical message links at the end of this message]:

Certainly, in this lifetime, both the righteous and the wicked are sinners by birth [nature] and sinners by practice. That sin nature and practice will not be removed from the righteous until they enter into life everlasting, as opposed to the death everlasting, that will be the lot of the wicked, forever, without end. Luke 16: 19-31 ; Matthew 25:31-46
We are told in the Scriptures that those who believe in Christ, [John 3:1-21] and live in Him [Matthew 7:13-29] will “inherit” eternal “life,” as opposed those who will experience eternal “death.” [Mark 16:16 ; Matthew 25:31-46] Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Christian martyr, once correctly stated that: “Those who believe, obey; and those who obey,
believe.” [Paraphrase] The New Testament Book of James 1:1f certainly bears out this reality.

You are either “Righteous” or “Wicked”

May those of you who have not been clothed with the “Righteousness of Christ” [Matthew 22:1-14 ; Ephesians 2:1-10] – may you come to know the Triune God in all His Righteousness. May you seek Him in His Revelation Scriptures where saving faith can be found! Romans 1:16 ; Romans 10:17 ; 2 Timothy 3:14-17 ; Acts 8:26-39 ; 1 Peter 1:23 ; James 1:18

Amen.

Related to the above message - See also:






Related Scriptures [below] -- Intended to be utilized in a simple worship format:

Also: For a couple of other (more formal) worship formats:


The Order of Morning Service 

The Order of Matins 

Old Testament:

Psalm 1:1f – The Righteous and the Wicked compared and contrasted

Psalm 73:1f – The righteous person’s frustration over the wicked and the Lord’s pronouncement and reassurance

New Testament

Matthew 22:1-14 – Christ’s parable of the wedding feast and the man who had no wedding garment

Philippians 3:7-9 – Clothed with Christ’s righteousness

Ephesians 2:1-10 – How the righteousness of Christ becomes the believing soul’s

Philippians 1:27b-28 -- A very interesting Scripture

_________________________________

Of Whom Does the Prophet Speak" -- by Victor Buksbazen -- Isaiah 53:1-12 -- an in-depth view of and the prophecy of Christ, hundred of years before his birth. Isaiah 53:1-12 underscores the truthfulness of Divine Revelation as exemplified in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.
______________________________________

Pastor (emeritus) Nathan Bickel

Please also note:

The "Words in Season" topical messages and related worship format are not intended to discourage or replace the Christian worship and assembly of Christians at their particular places of church worship. As this website's author, it is my prayer and hope, that many souls will find the topical messages, related worship format and other material, a useful and valuable Christian resource.

The Christian Faith: Parts 1-3