1 John 1:5-10

This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.  1 John 1:5-10

John writes this letters to believers and it is a general epistle.  Many of the things John writes in 1 John he also wrote in the gospel of John.  John makes the distinction between light and darkness.  In Jesus there is no darkness.  The world is filled with darkness as a result of sin.  Jesus came to set us free from sin and death.  Those who place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ have been set free from sin, sin no longer remains.

If we claim to have fellowship with Jesus and walk with Him but continue to live in darkness and sin then we are simply deceiving ourselves.  Jesus said that those who truly love Him will obey His commands.  He continually spoke of repenting for the kingdom of Heaven was at hand.  We are called to turn from our sin and turn fully unto Him.  But if we walk in the light as He is in the light we not only have fellowship with Him, but we have fellowship with fellow believers who have placed their faith and trust in Him.

If we claim we are without sin before we come to Christ we are deceiving ourselves.  Everyone born on this earth is born into sin.  Because of Adam and Eve all of us are born with a nature that is defiled by sin and the only way to be set free from the curse of sin and death is through the precious blood of Jesus.

But when we confess our sins unto the Lord He is faithful and just to forgive us.  The Lord desires to pour out His grace and mercy upon our lives.  He desires to lavish His love upon us and has made the way of salvation for all people.  The door of salvation is open to all people, but it requires a person to humble themselves before the Lord, acknowledge their need for a savior, and seek His forgiveness.  So many are unwilling to humble themselves before the Lord.

The key to salvation is repentance.  We must not only confess our sin but we must repent and turn from our sin.  There are many who simply give the Lord lip service and not their lives.  But nothing is hidden from the Lord of glory.  All will stand before Him some day.  May we work out our salvation each day with fear and trembling.  May we understand the nearness of the Lord’s return and share the gospel as we have opportunity.

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Matthew 2:4-6

Gathering together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. They said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for this is what has been written by the prophet: ‘And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, Are by no means least among the leaders of Judah; For out of you shall come forth a Ruler Who will shepherd My people Israel.’”
Matthew 2:4-6 NASB
 
The first time Jesus came He fulfilled the prophesies concerning the coming of the Messiah. The gospel writers pointed to the prophecies of the prophets of old. But the religious leaders of Jesus day were blinded to the truth. They were blinded by their pride and their self-righteousness.
 
So many today in the church are blinded to the soon return of Jesus. God has called us to consecrate our lives to Him and many treat their walk with Christ so flippantly. They claim to follow Christ, but their hearts are not given unto Him. He has called us to abide in Him and so many simply only turn to Him when they are in crisis. They simply treat the Lord like some genie who is only spoken too when things are needed.
 
Every prophecy in God’s word will be fulfilled. Many mock the second coming of Jesus Christ, but what they don’t understand is this was spoken of by the apostle Peter. All that God has stated in His word is coming to pass and we are seeing prophecy fulfill before our eyes. Let us draw near each day and make fellowship with the Lord the priority of our lives.

1 John 1:9

9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
 
The Lord is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins. He has not called us to be perfect, He has called us to abide in Him each day. Walking with Him in all things, diligently studying His word and making our lives a house of prayer.
 
In this life we will fall short and we will make mistakes, but understanding the grace and mercy of God is key to walking in victory and freedom. When we do fall short we are able to go before the Lord, confess our sin and seek His forgiveness. But as we grow in maturity with Christ the sin and desires of the flesh that once dominated our lives, no longer dominate our lives.
 
So many have misconceptions of who the Lord is. Many believe God to be this angry tyrant in Heaven who desires to punish us when we fall short. But if we continue in disobedience and rebellion the Lord will surely discipline us. But in every mistake the Lord desires to teach us of His kingdom, His love, His grace, and who He is. May we focus our hearts daily upon God’s word and prepare our hearts for His soon return.

Galatians 4:4-5

But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.
Galatians 4:4-5 NKJV
 
Jesus had to come to this earth and be born under the law so that when He died upon the cross as a sinless savior, His blood would atone for the sins of humanity. Jesus came not to destroy the law, but He came to fulfill it. This is why His righteousness is applied to us and we are able to draw near to our Father without fear and with boldness. It is also important to understand that it states when the fullness of time had come. God has a set time for all things and it was set in place before the creation of all things. God’s plans and purposes are sovereign and are being fulfill daily upon the earth. May we draw near to Christ each day and pray as the Holy Spirit leads.

I will be with you

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you.
When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned,
Nor shall the flame scorch you. Isaiah 43:2
 
The Lord walks with us through all things. In this world we will have trouble, but we are to fear not because He has overcome the world. Often times the enemy will try to paralyze us with fear, confusion, and doubt. But everything that proceeds from the mouth of Satan is simply a lie. When we understand the authority we have through Jesus and who we are in Him, we will walk without fear. We will do all things in love, and it is the love of Christ that drives out all fear. So many in this world walk in fear because they are in bondage to the enemy. Satan imprisons people through fear. He plays on the insecurities of people and deceives them into believing that by indulging in the lust of the sinful nature that they will find contentment and fulfillment. But in the end it is simply a lie and deception. May we focus our hearts daily upon Jesus Christ and prepare our hearts for His soon coming return.

Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world

29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 30 This is He of whom I said, ‘After me comes a Man who is preferred before me, for He was before me.’ 31 I did not know Him; but that He should be revealed to Israel, therefore I came baptizing with water.”

32 And John bore witness, saying, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and He remained upon Him. 33 I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34 And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God.”  John 1:29-34

John proclaimed that Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.  The reason John makes this proclamation is because Jesus would come as the sinless sacrifice to atone for the sins of humanity once and for all.  Through Christ our sins are removed and forgiven and His righteousness is applied to our lives.  It enables us to go boldly before the throne of grace with confidence because our sin no longer remains.

John exclaims that this is the one John has been preaching about.  John’s purpose was to prepared the hearts of the people for the coming Messiah.  This is why he came baptizing because John proclaimed repentance and an outward sign of turning from one’s sins is baptism.

John states that he saw the Spirit descend upon Jesus like a dove and remain.  Under the Old Covenant the Spirit of God would come upon those the Lord used but would not remain.  It would empower them, but because of their sin it could not remain.  But through Jesus because He was without sin the Spirit was able to remain.  Everything Jesus did was done through the power of the Holy Spirit.  It is the Holy Spirit today who empowers us to do all things for God’s kingdom.

John was sent by God to prepare the way.  John was told by the Lord that the one who He saw the Spirit descend upon and remain was indeed the Messiah.  For John came baptizing with water, but Jesus came to baptize with fire and with the Holy Spirit.  Fire purifies and it is the Holy Spirit who purifies us and transforms us from the inside out.  It is the Holy Spirit who removes the darkness and lies of the enemy, and leads us into all truth.  It is the truth of God’s word that sets us free.  As we study His word on a daily basis our hearts and minds are changed and as they are changed our lives are transformed.