Monday, September 30, 2013

The Promised Helper


 One of my favorite passages of scripture is found in the gospel of John chapters 13-17, starting with Jesus washing the feet of His 12 disciples and ending with the rather lengthy prayer of Jesus to His Father. Here is where we see clearly as Jesus realizes His time on earth in His physical body is approaching the end; He tries to prepare his disciples for the soon coming events that must happen in order to fulfill the "cosmic plan" that was made in "eternity past" before creation. This plan included the words of God recorded by Moses "Then God said let us make human beings in our image, to be like us" (Gen 1:26) NLT. This plan included the Son Jesus coming down to earth as "Agape Incarnate" to redeem the result of the "fall of Adam" into sin. This required the death of a perfect "sinless man" like the First Adam was when he was created, before God's enemy lied to Adam and his wife Eve, and they believed his lies and disobeyed the only command of their Creator, about not eating the "forbidden fruit" of the tree of good and evil. See particularly (John 16:7-11) where Jesus told them what this "Helper", the Holy Spirit would do when He came to replace Jesus.

Jesus clearly explained to His disciples how their lives would be different after He returned to be honored by Father after He completed His assignment that He was sent to earth for. After He arose from the tomb on the third day, He remained for 40 days before ascending to heaven spending time with the disciples, and telling them to stay in Jerusalem "until" they received the power of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4-11), and as this scene was recorded by Luke to explain what was happening on earth, King David had already given us the scene in heaven. See (Psalm 110:1) for a description of His arrival in heaven. Because God has always existed in eternity He knows the past, present, and future events as happening "now" because of "perfect foreknowledge". Once we understand this supernatural ability of God, it helps to explain how certain passages of scripture start to make sense. That is why we need a "spiritual mind" as Paul explains in (1 Cor 2:9-16), and when we are born again spiritually and Father adopts us into His family and gives us the gift of His Holy Spirit as a seal of this transaction, He abides with us permanently from that moment on. We are then a citizen of heaven having received "eternal life" and will be assured of spending eternity in the New Jerusalem that John saw coming down from heaven (Rev 21:1-7)!!

Sincerely submitted.

Dave Jamer                                    29/07/13 


Monday, September 23, 2013

Bring Glory to God


 Recently I was reading (1 Peter 4:10-11) from my NLT version of the scripture and was amazed when I read the words "Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to Him forever and ever! Amen". I'm sure I had read this passage from Peter many times in the past, but this time from this newer version this closing phrase from verse 11 of chapter 4 really caught my attention! So I read the whole chapter again to get the truth in context, and was particularly touched by verse 8 and 14. I would suggest that you read this chapter over again a few times in several different translations carefully and see what the Holy Spirit will reveal to you. In the NLT version the heading over verses 1-11 is called "Living for God", and verses 12 to the end of the chapter is called "Suffering for Being a Christian". I don't know many people who look forward to suffering for any reason, but scripture is very clear that if we intend to live a life that pleases our Father we can expect some suffering.

Verse 8 states "Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins". The Greek word translated as love here is [Agape] which is the same word that is used in (John 3:16) and several other place when speaking of God's kind of love. And verse 14 states "So be happy when you are insulted for being a Christian, for then the glorious Spirit of God rests upon you". So if we combine the intent of Peter in the overall theme of this chapter we will see that the possible suffering we may be expected to endure as a follower of Jesus should not surprise us. In fact I think the overall theme of scripture is that "everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution". (2 Tim 3:12). There is no way to escape it, and anyone who tells you that a life with Jesus is a wonderful "problem free" existence is  lying to you, and is either very ignorant of scripture or else are false prophets. We need to have a basic understanding of both the OT scripture as well as the NT to grasp the need for understanding the Gospel of the Kingdom. And when we read (Matt 24:14) we can see how important Jesus considers this to be, "And the Good News of the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come". The "end" He refers to here is the end of life as we have known it on Planet Earth. So we must realize how important it is that all the "unreached peoples groups" hear the gospel, some of which don't yet have the scripture in their native tongue!!

Sincerely submitted.

Dave Jamer                                       02/08/13                                                                                  

Monday, September 16, 2013

Difficult Words


In our English language we have a lot of words that sound the same but are spelled differently and have a very different meaning. For example a common word that we use a lot is "there" that sounds the same as "their", but as we all know has a completely different meaning and use in a sentence. Another word that I have trouble with is "separate" and "separete", only one letter different but an entirely different meaning. I often feel sorry for the immigrants coming to Canada from various countries and are required to learn English before they can get a job. It is a very difficult language to learn, and even those of us who learned it as children because it is our "mother tongue" still have difficulty keeping it straight. These 2 illustrations that I used are only ones that I have difficulty with, but I'm sure there are lots more we could add to the list. And these are just in the normal way of communication, but consider some of the words we use to communicate spiritual or religious subjects, here is where I see more confusion as to what we mean by the words we use. 

It would seem that each denomination has a certain number of words or phrases they use that are unique to them. A few that come to mind are "transubstantiation" which is a term used in the Roman Catholic Church which means to them that in the celebration of the "Eucharist" the host and the wine actually become the body and blood of Christ. I assume this is based on the scripture (John 6:53-58) where Jesus was referring to something that happens when we are "born again" spiritually and Father adopts us into His family as His child. This statement was never meant to have a physical interpretation. The natural mind we are born with cannot understand the things of the Spirit (1 Cor 2:10-16), there is a huge difference between a "natural mind" and one that is controlled by the Spirit of God. Another phrase that is applied to certain people is "hyper-grace", meaning they have taken the Biblical meaning of grace beyond its limits and it has become "error". Some people have done the same thing with the word "faith" to make it into "hyper-faith". Any truth taken beyond its actual Biblical meaning can become error when it is taken "out of focus", so to speak, like a set of binoculars, until you adjust them into the proper "focus" all you see is a blur. As I understand it this can happen with certain words from the Bible, so we need to be aware of this and let the Holy Spirit lead you into all "Truth" who is Jesus (John 14:6)!!

Sincerely submitted.

Dave Jamer                                               22/08/13                                                                                                            

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A Time To Ponder


This word "ponder" comes from a Greek word that means "placing together for comparison". It is used in (Luke 2:19) "But Mary keep all these things and pondered them in her heart". Just try to image how many things she would have to ponder about, since she met Gabriel the Archangel, one of the three highest created beings who shared the rule of the Kingdom of God with Father. It would seem that his responsibility was in the area of "Communications" between God and man, for example Daniel in the OT, and both Mary and Joseph in regard to the birth of Jesus the Lamb of God who took away the sin of the whole world, (Matt 1:20-21). Read the account of Gabriel coming to Daniel in response to the prayer of (Dan 9:20-28) and assuring him that his prayer had been heard and that he had been sent to give Daniel the answer to his prayer. Then of course the many incidents in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus must have left lots of things in her mind to "ponder".

As we consider the complete story of Jesus Christ the Son of God who left His position in heaven with the Father to come down to our sin-cursed earth to become the "Last Adam", or "Agape incarnate", or "Immanuel" (God with us), we can really appreciate His Self Sacrifice. He paid the supreme sacrifice of giving His life for a world that hated Him, "The Lamb of God" who died for the sins of humanity. We often hear discussions about who killed Jesus? Some blame the Jews, some say the Romans etc. but the truth is that no one "Killed Jesus", He gave up His life freely for all of us because of the Agape love of the Father, Son and Spirit. This was all in accordance with the cosmic plan revealed by God to Paul and expressed in (Eph 1:1-8) this was accomplished on the "old Rugged Cross" outside Jerusalem where He shed His blood for you and me. The true Gospel of the Kingdom that Paul preached and described so well in (1 Cor 15:3-6) explains the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus as the real core of the gospel that has not been clearly understood by many people. Certain church doctrines have made the "gospel" to be something other than the true thing. We hear of the "social gospel", the "prosperity gospel", the "Feel good gospel" etc. but be assured they are not the real thing. There is only one true Gospel of the Kingdom that Jesus mentions in (Matt 24:14), and anything else that claims to be "the gospel" is a counterfeit. There seems to be many of these counterfeits showing up in church circles lately, as we were told!!

Sincerely submitted.

Dave Jamer                          04/08/13   

Monday, September 2, 2013



I was impressed by a devotional by Joe Stowell in Our Daily Bread (ODB) on Aug 18/13 that he called "Always An Upgrade" in which he said his wife Martie would often stop him on his way out the door to go to work and suggest his tie didn't match well with his shirt, or his slacks didn't go with his sports jacket or some other corrective improvement toward his outward appearance was needed. Apparently Joe usually took her advice, as most wise husbands would, since most wives are better equipped to judge such things. Then Joe switched to the topic of our inward character qualities, as compared to our outward appearance. And that is what I would like to draw your attention to in this article. As followers of Jesus our character should always match our outward behavior as a "citizen of God's Kingdom" because we are His "Ambassadors" (2 Cor 5:20) as Paul describes those who are "In Christ", or are "born again" believers. So we will look at a few passages of scripture that deal with our behavior based on our character. 

One of the best scripture passages I can think of for defining our behavior would be the third chapter of Paul's letter to the Colossian church. In the NLT version the heading for chapter three reads "Living the new life", and verses 1-17 are full of lots of instructions to individual believers, then from 18 to the end of the chapter it reads "Instructions for Christian Families". Paul starts the chapter with "Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God's right hand". In verse three he continues with "For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God". Then in verse five we read "So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Don't be greedy, for a greedy person is an idolater, worshipping the things of this world". In verses 12-14 we read "Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other's faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts". From these verses I trust we can all see that there is much more to living a life that will please the Father than just "accepting Jesus" and going to heaven when we die!!

Sincerely submitted.

Dave Jamer                                              24/08/13