The past is behind you. His mercies are new every morning… right now in fact! Thank You Father for RESTART.
So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. John 19:30
Imagine looking at Leonardo da Vinci’s famous Mona Lisa painting in the Louvre museum. Would you think of adding more brush strokes to it? Of course not! It was done by a master, so what could you possibly add to the painting to improve it?
In the same way, that is how we are to look at Jesus’ work on the cross. He cried out, “It is finished!” You cannot complete a completed work. You cannot finish a finished work. Our salvation is won. Our sins are all forgiven. We are made forever righteous by His blood. Christ paid completely and perfectly for our total forgiveness, righteousness and every blessing!
In fact, these three words, “It is finished”, come from one Greek word teleo. In the days of Jesus, a servant would use it when reporting to his master: “I have completed the work assigned to me.” (John 17:4) The word means, “It is finished, it stands finished and it will always be finished!” Perhaps the most significant meaning of teleo is how it is used by merchants: “The debt is paid in full!” When Jesus gave Himself on the cross, He met fully the righteous demands of the law. He paid our debts in full!
Today, it is not our works that will bring us the blessings. It is Christ’s finished work. Christian living is not about doing, but believing in His finished work. Under the law, we must do. Under grace, it is done!
Maybe you are faced with overwhelming odds today. Jesus promises, “It is finished!” You are not going to be delivered because you have already been delivered. You are not going to be healed because you are already the healed! God healed you 2,000 years ago! Isaiah 53:5 declares, “By His stripes you are healed!” You are already pregnant with healing. Keep resting in His finished work and it will manifest!
My friend, the work is finished. The victory is won. Our enemies have been made His footstool. Our blessings have been bought by His blood! Live life knowing that there is nothing for you to do—only believe! It is finished!
Thought For The Day
It is believing in Christ’s finished work that will bring us the blessings.
We Believe – Newsboys
In this time of desperation
When all we know is doubt and fear
There is only One Foundation
We believe, We believe
In this broken generation
When all is dark, You help us see
There is only One Salvation
We believe, We believe
We believe in God the Father
We believe in Jesus Christ
We believe in The Holy Spirit
And He’s given us new life
We believe in the crucifixion
We believe that He conquered death
We believe in the resurrection
And He’s coming back again, we believe
So let our faith be more than anthems
Greater than the songs we sing
And in our weakness and temptations, we believe…
There are several Greek words used for “word.” The Greek word used here is RHEMA and it literally means, “a spoken word; an utterance, a saying, but specifically a spoken word appropriate for the situation.” It’s not the Bible lying on your coffee table that makes the enemy flee, but the Word of God hidden in your heart, activated by the power of the Holy Spirit, and spoken in the appropriate situation. It’s similar to what Jesus says in John 6:63, that “the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life.”
The words that we speak from the written Word of God are empowered by the Holy Spirit. The Word by itself doesn’t make us free. It is the Word we know and speak that will deliver us (Jn. 8:32).
Why is the Word so effective? Because it is the WORD of God. It has authority, because it is indeed the WORD of God. God’s Word supersedes all authority of the church, of reason, of intellect, and even of Satan. That’s why it is so effective.
In Luke, chapter four, when Jesus was tempted of the devil for forty days, it was the Word of God that Jesus used to defeat the enemy at His temptation.
Jesus constantly met His temptation by quoting from God’s Word as He repeatedly stated the phrase, “It is written.” Likewise, the Christian soldier must avail himself of God’s Word by placing it in his heart so that the Holy Spirit may bring it forth at the appropriate time to accomplish a complete and total victory.
“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:41
The Bible presents salvation as a life transforming experience. Change is one of the distinguishing characteristics of a true believer. Yet, failure to understand that this change takes place in the spirit first, and then is reflected in our outward appearance through our thoughts and actions in direct proportion to the way we renew our minds, causes much confusion.
This change has to take place in our born-again spirit first. Why is that? If you were fat before you got saved, you will be fat after you get saved, unless you go on a weight loss program. Your body doesn’t instantly change and neither does your soul or mind.
It is your spirit that is instantly changed at salvation. It is perfect (Heb. 12:23). It cannot sin (1 Jn. 3:9). Everything that is true of Jesus is true of our born-again spirit. Your spiritual salvation is complete. At salvation, you receive the same spirit that you will have throughout all eternity. It will not have to be changed or cleansed again. It is sealed with the Holy Spirit (Eph. 1:13) and therefore, is sanctified and perfected forever (Heb. 10:10, 14; 12:23).
For the remainder of our Christian life, we must not try to obtain faith, joy or love from God, but rather release what we already have in our spirits (Gal. 5:22-23) into our soul and body. Failure to understand this has caused some people to despair when they don’t see sufficient change in their life after coming to the Lord for salvation. It must be understood that the change is internal in our spirit and the outward change will take place as we renew our minds through God’s Word.
“I in them, and you in me, that they may become perfectly one; so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them even as You loved Me.” – John 17:23
God loves us the same as He loves Jesus. A true revelation of this will quicken our faith and allow us to walk in the fullness of God. God’s love is the key that opens the door to everything that God is. “God is love” (1 Jn. 4:8).
God’s love is not one dimensional. There is width, length, depth and height to it, which can only be comprehended through the revelation and knowledge of the Holy Spirit. Those who only have a superficial knowledge of God’s love are like a person who looks at a one dimensional picture of the real thing.
In Ephesians 3:19, Paul prays for us to know the love of God which passes knowledge. How can we know the love of God if it passes knowledge? This sounds like a contradiction. The Greek word that is translated “know” in this verse is GINOSKO, which is a verb expressing experiential knowledge. The Greek word that is translated “knowledge” is GNOSIS, which is a noun denoting the act of knowledge. Simply, Paul is praying that we will experience the love of God which passes mere knowledge of it.
Since a true revelation of God’s love makes us full with the fullness of God, then a lack of being full of God must mean that we lack understanding and experience of God’s love. The end result of having understanding and experiential knowledge of God’s love is that we will be filled with all the fullness of God.
This parable told in the book of Judges 9:7-16 is a personal favorite, and one I had to share in observation of current events and the demonstrated attitudes of some Christians.
Once the trees went forth to anoint a king over them, and they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us!’ But the olive tree said to them, ‘Should I give up my fatness by which God and men are honored, and go to wave over the trees?’ Then the trees said to the fig tree, ‘You come and reign over us!’ But the fig tree said to them, ‘Should I give up my sweetness and my good fruit, and go to wave over the trees?’ Then the trees said to the vine, ‘You come and reign over us.’ And the vine replied, ‘Should I give up my new wine, which makes God and men happy, and go to wave over the trees?’
Then all the trees said to the bramble, ‘You come and reign over us.’ So the bramble said to the trees, ‘If in truth you are anointing me king over you, then come and take refuge in my shade; but if not, let fire come out of the bramble and devour the cedars of Lebanon.’
How interesting! All the qualified/worthy trees declined the offer to rule, citing their duty to God and man! but the unworthy bramble agreed to reign as king over the trees.
Not only does it agree to reign, it states it’s caveat for reigning.
First, it promises what it cannot possibly deliver: “refuge in it’s shade”. For those who do not know: a bramble is a rough (usually wild) thorny shrub, that grows low and is incapable of offering shade to anyone.
The worst revelation came next. The bramble warns against dissent. It promises to be a ruthless, authoritative and oppressive ruler who will destroy those who disagree with it.
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.
"But if we shall say, Of men; we fear the people; for all hold John as a prophet." Matthew 21:23-27
Proverbs 29:25 says, "The fear of man brings a snare: but whoso puts his trust in the Lord shall be safe." These men were seeking to snare Jesus in His words, but they couldn’t because He was safely trusting in the Lord. It was easy for Jesus to "turn the tables on them" and catch them because they feared man (Jn. 5:44).
Jesus had already shown that all of their works were done so that they could be seen of men (Mt. 6:5). They were not really seeking to please God, but were doing all their religious works for the praise of men. It is totally vain for a man who is bound by the fear of man to try to intimidate a man whose trust is totally in the Lord.
When David fought Goliath (1 Sam. 17), everyone mocked him because of his belief that he could win. Goliath was a giant and he was only a small boy. But David said something very important in his defense. In 1 Samuel 17:34-37, David revealed that this was not the first time he had depended on God for a victory against something bigger than himself. He had already killed a lion and a bear with his bare hands. He KNEW he could defeat Goliath with God’s help. Faith must be developed much like a muscle. Those who wait until the day of the contest to start training are going to lose. That’s not the way it works in the natural or the spiritual.
What is life all about? What is the purpose of one’s existence? What is to be gained in life? What do people live for? When we say "so and so" is my life, we mean that all of our attention, our focus, and our purpose for living, is directed towards and revolves around that person. In a similar way, we need to be totally consumed with Christ and His life. True life is only to be found in Christ. It is not to be found in prestige, fortune, fame, or things, but only in the one who is life – Jesus Christ.
"Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out." John 12:31
The only reason Satan ever had any right to become a prince or rule over us was because we yielded ourselves to him through sin (Rom. 6:16). Since Jesus "bore our sins in His own body on the tree" (1 Pet. 2:24), Satan no longer has power or authority over those who accept Jesus’ gift of salvation. Satan has been "cast out" — stripped of any power he had. Now he can only deceive, and if we fall for his lies, we stop God’s blessings from flowing in our lives.
The reason why a believer must live a holy life, is to avoid Satan’s bondage. When we obey sin, we yield ourselves to Satan, the author of that sin.Yielding to sin is yielding to a person, Satan. God doesn’t impute the sin to us but the devil does. Our actions either release the power of Satan or the power of God in us.
Although God is not imputing our sins unto us, we cannot afford the luxury of sin because it allows Satan to have access to us. When a Christian does sin and gives the devil an opportunity to produce death in his life, the way to stop him is to confess the sin. God is faithful and just to take the forgiveness that is already present in our born-again spirit and release it in our flesh, thereby removing Satan and his strongholds.
A person who abandons himself to sin is actually becoming a slave to the devil while a person who obeys righteousness is yielding himself to the Lord. This is why a Christian should live a holy life.
"Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out." John 12:31
There is still a future judgment of the world coming, where the wicked will be separated from the righteous and cast into the lake of fire. This verse refers to the sins of the world that were about to be placed on Jesus and that He would suffer our punishment.
Jesus suffered the punishment for our sins, so there is no reason why we should suffer for them too. The price for sin has already been paid by the only one who could fully pay it and that is Jesus. All Jesus asks of us to make His redemption ours, is faith in Him as our Lord.
Sin has a wage it must pay and no one can avoid payday without faith in Jesus. Anyone who does not receive the new birth will be held liable for all the wrong they committed as a result of their sinful nature. However, those who receive the new birth through faith in Jesus, don’t have a sin nature and therefore, will not receive the payment of death.
Physical death as well as every result of the sin nature (i.e. sickness, depression, fear, etc.) is only a by-product of the spiritual death that was already inside of us. The Lord told Adam that in the day he ate of the forbidden tree, he would surely die (Gen. 2:17). Adam didn’t die physically that day but he did die spiritually. Physical death came 930 years later for Adam (Gen. 5:5) as a by-product of his spiritual death.
Eternal life is a gift. The dictionary defines a gift as "something that is bestowed voluntarily and without compensation; a present." We have nothing to do with earning this gift. All you have to do is receive it by faith.