How the Holy Spirit Convicts

How the Holy Spirit Convicts
One of the things that the Holy Spirit does is to convict. What do you think He convicts us of? All the things we are doing that are wrong? All the mistakes that we make?

John 16:8 tells us what the Holy Spirit convicts of. It says that He will convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment. John 16:9-11 explains further just what this means. These verses paint a very different picture of the Holy Spirit’s role of convicting than we sometimes imagine!

John 16:9 says that He convicts the world of sin because they don’t believe in Jesus. The Holy Spirit convicting of sin doesn’t mean that He points out to us every sin we ever commit. Rather, it means that He convicts those who haven’t accepted Christ of the one sin that will keep them from spending eternity with Him – the sin of not believing in Him.

John 16:10 says that Holy Spirit convicts of righteousness, because Jesus was going to the Father, and therefore we would no longer see Him. Under the new covenant of God’s grace that Christ came to establish, how do we become righteous? Not by always doing the right thing and never messing up, but rather through faith in Jesus (Rom 3:22)! When Jesus returned to the Father, the Holy Spirit was sent to be our Helper (Jn 14:16). Today, Christ is at the Father’s right hand, representing us, and our Helper, the Holy Spirit, convicts of the fact that in Him, we have been made righteous (2 Cor 5:21)!

John 16:11 says that the Holy Spirit convicts of judgment, because the ruler of the world has been judged. Our Savior has disarmed principalities and powers. He triumphed over them at the cross (Col 2:15). In other words, the devil is a defeated foe, and the Holy Spirit reminds us of that!

This is how the Holy Spirit convicts! He points people towards faith in Christ, He helps us to understand that we have been made righteous, and He reminds us that the enemy has been defeated! How wonderful God is to have sent us such a Helper!

What Does It Mean To Be A Christian?

Christian Q

Have you ever wondered what it really means to be a Christian? Have you ever had someone ask you that question, and found it difficult to explain to them clearly what being a Christian is all about?

Simply put, a Christian is someone who has received God’s gift of salvation. A Christian understands that . . .

  • They have done things that are wrong, and the wrong things they have done separated from God. (Ephesians 2:12)
  • No matter how hard they try, they can’t save themselves. We can never be good enough to earn a relationship with God, because He is perfect, and no matter how hard we try, we just can’t be perfect. (Romans 3:10)
  • Jesus took their place. The payment for doing things that are wrong is death. Jesus took our place, and died for us. Because He did that, we can have eternal life – a relationship with God that begins now, and will last forever! (Romans 6:23,
    John 3:16, 2 Corinthians 5:21)
  • God offers us salvation as a free gift. When someone gives you a gift, you reach out and take it! God offers the gift of salvation to each of us. We simply need to receive it! (Ephesians 2:8-9)

If you’ve already accepted Jesus as your Savior, this is what that decision meant. If you haven’t received God’s gift of salvation yet, accept it today!

Aren’t sure where to begin? Simply tell God that you know you’re an sinner, and can’t save yourself. Tell Him you want Jesus to be your Savior, and that you receive His gift of forgiveness and salvation. It’s as simple as that!

Check out this video from my other site, Generation Arise!

Your Mistakes Can’t Keep God From Loving You!

mistakes

Have you ever wondered how God can love you in spite of the mistakes you make? Do you feel as if all the times you’ve messed up surely must make Him love you less? Like your failings somehow separate you from His affection?

Guess what?!? It’s not true! God doesn’t require you to be perfect for Him to love you. There’s only one person He ever expected perfection from, and that’s Jesus! He didn’t send His Son to save those who had it all together. He sent Him to save those who had messed up – those who knew that they didn’t have it all figured out. Need proof? Look up Matthew 9:13, which says that he didn’t come to call those who were righteous, but rather that He came to call sinners! Or what about Romans 5:6, which says that it was for the ungodly that He died?

Do you want to know the reason God gave us all the rules in His Word? Not so that we could struggle to be good enough to become right with God, but rather to show us that we weren’t perfect, so that we’d know we needed someone to save us (Romans 3:20). God poured out His wrath and the punishment for our sin on Jesus. Now, He promises to never be angry with or rebuke us again (Isaiah 54:9). In fact, He no longer remembers our sins (Hebrews 8:12). If He no longer remembers them, how can they keep Him from loving us?

If you’ve received Jesus as your Savior, know that you are God’s child. He loves you, and cares about you very much. He always will, regardless of your actions. Stop beating yourself up over your mistakes, and accept your Heavenly Father’s love for you!

God Remembers Our Sins No More

remember no moreWeek 40 of Called and Created’s Bible Reading and Memorization Plan is nearly finished. This week’s reading was
Hebrews 6-10.

Hebrews 8:12 says that God remembers our sins no more! They have been completely forgiven because of what Christ has done!

“Because the price for our sins was paid in full at the cross, we have been totally forgiven in Christ. Not one of our sins remains undealt with. They have been completely erased – removed from us as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12). When God looks at us, He no longer sees our sins. In fact, He no longer even remembers them. That is how completely we have been forgiven!

Under the new covenant, God is merciful to our iniquities, not only refraining from giving us what we do deserve, but also giving us many good gifts that we don’t deserve. We have been forgiven of our every sin, to the point that God remembers them no more. Rejoice in the fact that there’s no longer anything standing between you and your Heavenly Father’s love and acceptance!” – Excerpt from previous post, “He Remembers Your Sins No More!

Religion Says . . . God Says . . .

Religion Says . . . God Says . . .

Religion says that you must be perfect. God says that you have been perfected once and for all (Hebrews 10:14).

Religion says that you must earn God’s acceptance. God says that you are accepted in the beloved (Ephesians 1:6).

Religion says that you must keep a long list of rules to be made right with God. God says that you are made right with Him through faith in His Son (Philippians 3:9).

Religion says that when you sin, God is displeased with you. God says that He remembers your sins no more (Hebrews 8:12).

Religion says that you must do everything right to experience God’s blessings. God says that they are free gifts of His unmerited favor.

Religion says that your sins will find you out. God says that your sins received their full punishment at the cross.

Religion says when you sin, to expect God’s judgement. God says that where there’s sin, there’s an even greater abundance of grace (Romans 5:20).

Religion says that you a servant who must earn the approval of their master. God says that you are His dearly loved child (1 John 3:1).

The fundamental difference between religion and a relationship with God is this – religion tells you what you must do. God tells you what His Son has already done.

New Creation, Reconciliation, and Right Standing Before God

New Creation, Reconciliation, and Right Standing Before GodWeek 28 of Called and Created’s Bible Reading and Memorization Plan is nearing its end. This week’s reading was 2 Corinthians 1-5. These chapters begin another of Paul’s letters to the church at Corinth.

2 Corinthians 5:17-21 contains some amazing truths! These verses tell us that:

 

 

  • We are in Christ (v. 17). As believers, our identity is found in Him!
  • If we are in Christ, we are a new creation – the old has past, and the new has come (v. 17)! We are not who we once were. We have been made new.
  • We have been reconciled to God through Christ (v. 18-19). Because of what Jesus has done for us, there’s no longer anything standing between us and God. If we have accepted God’s gift of salvation, we have become His children, and He is our Heavenly Father!
  • We have been entrusted with the ministry of reconciliation (v. 18-19). This is the message that we are to share – not that God is ready and waiting to rain down judgement for every mistake we make, but that because of Christ’s finished work, He no longer holds our sins against, and we can be reconciled to Him.
  • God made Christ, who knew no sin, to be sin for us, that in Him, we might become the righteousness of God (v. 21). At the cross, He took our place of sin, that we might take His place of right standing before God!

2 Corinthians 5:17-21 is full of wonderful truths for us, as believers! May God use these verses to reveal to you who you in Christ more clearly than ever before!

No Condemnation For Those Who Are In Christ

No Condemnation For Those Who Are In ChristThis week’s memory passage from Called and Created’s Bible Reading and Memorization Plan is Romans 8:1-2. These verses declare that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ, for the law of the Spirit of life has set us from from the law of sin and death.

There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. Stop and think about that statement for a moment – NO condemnation. If you are in Christ, then even when you mess up, there’s no condemnation. Even when you make a mistake, there’s no condemnation. Even when you fail in some area you’ve failed in dozens of times before, there’s still no condemnation for you, for you are IN CHRIST!

Why is there no condemnation for those of us who are in Christ today? Because the law of the Spirit of life has set us free from the law of sin and death! We are no longer under the old covenant of the law, with its regulations that we just aren’t able to keep, that condemn us at every turn. We are under the new covenant of God’s grace, under which His Spirit – the Spirit of life – lives within us!

Always remember that if you are in Christ, there is no condemnation for you. The law of the Spirit of life has set you free from the law of sin and death!

All That He Has Done For Us

All That He Has Done For UsThis week’s memory verse for Called and Created’s Bible Reading and Memorization Plan is Isaiah 53:5. This verse states that Jesus was wounded for our transgressions and crushed for our iniquities, that the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and that by His stripes, we are healed.

Jesus was wounded for our transgressions, and crushed for our iniquities. Sin must be punished, and Jesus took our sins upon Himself, suffering the punishment that we deserved. Through the giving of His life for us at the cross, He paid the price for our sins once and for all.

When we do something wrong, we experience this feeling, deep down, that someone must pay. It’s hard for us to truly be at peace when we are plagued by condemnation, guilt, and shame over failures. God wants us to rest, however, in the knowledge that the chastisement for our peace was upon Christ – that He has paid the price for each and every wrong we have ever committed, or ever will commit. Knowing this, we can experience the true peace that God wants us to walk in.

By Jesus’ stripes, we are healed. He purchased our healing. He bought back our health and wholeness. With every lash He bore, sickness and disease met their end. Because of what He has done, all manner of illness and infirmity has no right to remain on our bodies. The stripes that He bore guaranteed our health and healing, if only we will receive them.

Jesus did all of this for you and me. Through His death, He paid the price for our sins, for us to experience peace, and for divine health and healing to be ours. Let’s give thanks to our Savior for all that He has done for us, and walk in all that He has provided for us by giving His life on our behalf!

He Doesn’t Treat Us As Our Sins Deserve

Psalm 10310This week’s memory verse from Called and Created’s Bible Reading and Memorization Plan is Psalm 103:10. This verse states that God does not treat us as our sins merit, nor repay us according to our wrongdoings.

This world’s system tells us that if we do wrong, we deserve to be punished. Do something that’s not right, and you must pay the price – that’s the mindset that we are used to. This, however, is not how God handles things. In spite of the fact that we have sinned, because of what Christ has done, He still welcomes us as His children – and, as His sons and daughters, delights in blessing us. Instead of treating us as our sins deserve, He treats us as those who have been made right in His eyes.

Our Heavenly Father does not repay us according to our iniquities. When we turned from Him, His response was to send His Son to redeem us. Whereas we deserved His wrath and anger, He poured it out on Jesus, that we might receive His love and grace. While we deserved His fiery judgement, He placed it upon Christ, that we might be given His unmerited favor. Though we deserved punishment, He sent Jesus to take that punishment upon Himself, that we might inherit His abundant blessings. All He asks of us is to simply receive His gift of salvation by placing our faith in His Son. Considering all that He has done for us, how can we ever doubt the goodness of our God?

God neither treats us as our sins merit, nor repays us according to our wrongdoings. He is constantly showing us His limitless mercy and grace. Let’s give thanks to Him for His unending love!

God’s Unmerited Favor

God's Unmerited FavorOld Covenant, and New Covenant. The law, and God’s unmerited favor. The two are vastly different and very distinct, yet so often we have a tendency to try to mix them together.

Sometimes we, while acknowledging Christ as our Savior, still have this feeling that we must act a certain way to merit God’s fellowship. When we fail, we get the sense that God is angry with us. We know that Jesus died for our sins, yet we still feel like there is something we must do to continue on in unbroken relationship with our Heavenly Father.

Where do these thoughts and feelings come from? They are the result of trying to mix elements of the old covenant of the law with elements of the new covenant of God’s grace. Though we understand that Jesus came to save us (John 3:17), we sometimes feel that we must do something to try to merit our salvation, and God’s blessings in our lives. We get caught up in the mentality of system of the Old Testament, in which mankind was rewarded for obedience, and punished for wrong-doing. That was how man related to God under the old covenant. In the new covenant, however, because of what Jesus has done, the blessing of redemption and relationship with God – as well as all of the other blessings promised in His Word – are free gifts of grace, which we need only receive.

God loved us so much, that He gave His only Son for us (John 3:16). We have been justified by Jesus’ blood, and saved from God’s wrath through Him (Romans 5:9). Romans 8:32 (NASB) declares that “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?” If God gave Jesus for us, how will be not also give us all the other good things His Word promises? Our righteousness is apart from the law (Romans 3:21). Because we have been made right in God’s eyes, we are now qualified to receive all of His blessings, including on-going, undisrupted relationship with Him.

Rather than trying to mix together parts of the old and new covenants – bits and pieces of law and grace – let’s receive the good news of the gospel in its entirety. Instead of relying on our own good works, let’s depend solely on Christ’s finished work at the cross. Let’s accept God’s blessings as free gifts from a loving Heavenly Father, rather than rewards of merit for good behavior. Let’s abandon the mixture, and receive God’s unmerited favor on our lives today!

“Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.”