(Go To Meeting)

Albert Jones—June 16, 2023

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We are caught up in the love that saves the world because we in the world, we're not of it, but we're in the world. God's love came into the world and we were able to access that relationship through Christ.

So, you might think that I would start my message in John 3:16, but not tonight. We'll get there, and get into those Scriptures before the message is over.

It's important to remember that those Scriptures are very important to us, because unless that wonderful gift of grace had occurred and extended to us, no one would have access to salvation!

We are indeed grateful to God and we rejoice in our knowledge and understanding of that Truth, that it is that relationship, that act of grace that He sent forth that made that possible.

  • we would not have a Savior if it wasn't for that
  • we would not have hope

We would be still 'the walking dead' in the world!

But we do have hope and God has extended that hope to us, so we're not the 'walking dead' as describe in Eph. 2. Let's remind ourselves of the state that God brought us out of. Indeed, God's act of love saved and rescued us from this state of existence.

God tells us through Paul; He helps us to comprehend and He doesn't want us to forget this true fact that He brought us out and unto Himself and saved us for a purpose, which He originally created mankind to start with. That purpose is going to be fulfilled in God's overall plan. But before that happened, this was our state:

Ephesians 2:1: "Now, you were dead in trespasses and sins."

Yes, we were literally the 'walking dead.' There was no hope for us, no means by which we could get freed from that penalty, from that verdict of death, which had incurred going all the way back to the Garden of Eden.

Verse 2: "In which you walked in times past according to the course of this world…"

We re just going along in this state as was the rest of the world, oblivious to anything for true salvation.

"…according to the prince of the power of the air… [Satan was leading us around] …the spirit that is now working within the children of disobedience; among whom also we all once had our conduct in the lusts of our flesh… [just this condition of man; the state of man] …doing the things willed by the flesh and by the mind, and were by nature the children of wrath, even as the rest of the world" (vs 2-3).

Verse 4: "But… [our gracious, loving God] …God, Who is rich in mercy because of His great love with which He loved us… [even when we were in this state, He loved us first] …even when we were dead in our trespasses, has made us alive together with Christ. (For you have been saved by grace.)" (vs 4-5).

Yes, there's an incredible act of grace extended to mankind. Not just us in the Church, but all of mankind. If it wasn't for that, we would be like the rest of the world. God has revealed His Truth to us and made the Truth available for us to comprehend, which is also a part of this grace, which was also made possible by what Christ did.

Yes, we would still be like those who have no hope in the world, if it wasn't for that act of grace extended to us. But, brethren:

  • we have hope
  • we have a sure Anchor
  • we have a Savior

I say that not just to us in the Church, but mankind can rejoice and celebrate access to the Messiah.

That life, death and resurrection has made possible salvation for mankind. That great Light, as it was, came into this world, into this physical realm to save His creation. Because of that great love with which He loved us, this is why He came. His act covers us all the way from Abel—from Adam and Eve even—to the two witnesses.

We are familiar with the 'two loaves' as described and instructed about during the days of Pentecost. So, Christ's work was the act that sealed the victory for us. It sealed victory over us and that victory was over the enemy and that bondage that Satan had upon us. That bondage that was held over all of God's creation! This bondage to death—the law of sin and death—which can be defined and summed up as the 'law of death' that is the result of sin and Satan.

Yes, we have this problem of sin, so how do we address that problem of sin? Now we're ready to start this message about the love that saves the world.

That is a backdrop. I think we can begin to comprehend even more abundantly with joy, this great love that God has extended to us. This is the expression of it from the Apostle John, and he describes it as glorious:

1-John 3:1: "Behold! What glorious love the Father has given to us, that we should be called the children of God! For this very reason, the world does not know us because it did not know Him."

But that's going to change! That's going to change, whether it be in the Millennium or coming through the Tribulation into the Millennium! Or in the Great White Throne Judgment. That is going to change!

Verse 2: "Beloved, now we are the children of God, and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be; but we know that when He is manifested, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him exactly as He is. And everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, even as He is pure" (vs 2-3).

This is not just a purification that comes from the idea or the knowledge. It is an active work on our part that is fueled by the indwelling of God's Spirit within you. "…everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, even as He is pure."

So, we start our life different in this hope we have in Christ. Those who don't have this hope within them continue to walk in the darkness and death. But we—having this knowledge and Truth and understanding—recognize that with the indwelling of God's Spirit we are moved from unrighteousness into the realm of righteousness!

We act accordingly! We believe and we act accordingly! Belief and faith in Jesus Christ actually produces action on our part.

  • we begin that purification process in Christ
  • we begin that purification process by allowing God's Spirit to do its great work within us

Verse 4: "Everyone who practices sin is also practicing lawlessness, for sin is lawlessness. And you know that He appeared… [Christ came into the world]: …in order that He might take away our sins; and in Him is no sin. Everyone who dwells in Him does not practice sin; anyone who practices sin has not seen Him, nor has known Him" (vs 4-6).

Again, John refers to us lovingly as little children; v 7: "Little children, do not allow anyone to deceive you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, even as He is righteous."

Our walk with God is one in Truth, love and obedience!

  • we strive after that which is of God
  • we strive after righteousness

This is the indwelling of God within us, the new person that we have become, so that we can be with Him where He is. It's not just having the hope or knowledge, but it's a realization now that:

  • you can overcome
  • you can defeat sin
  • you can have the victory

you don't have to struggle in fatality

  • without hope
  • without help
  • without strength

Which was our state prior to our calling!

All of this was made possible by that gracious loving act of love that God performed. Another aspect of that love is manifested with His Spirit. We then have power, the power to defeat the flesh and the law of sin and death! The problem is sin, and the answer is Christ!

Verse 4: "Everyone who practices sin is also practicing lawlessness, for sin is lawlessness. And you know that He appeared in order that He might take away our sins; and in Him is no sin. Everyone who dwells in Him does not practice sin; anyone who practices sin has not seen Him, nor has known Him. The one who practices sin is of the devil because the devil has beensinning from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God appeared that He might destroy the works of the devil" (vs 4-8).

This is not just an accident, this is not just some passing occurrence. This was pre-ordained and planned out by God the Father and Jesus Christ for us. "…For this purpose the Son of God appeared that He might destroy the works of the devil"

Yes, we have hope in Him; He achieved the victory so that we could have access to victory. Christ is that way!

Verse 9: "Everyone who has been begotten by God does not practice sin, because His seed of begettal is dwelling within him, and he is not able to practice sin because he has been begotten by God."

This is an incredible gift of love toward us! A begotten son of God is always in a spirit of repentance toward sin. Any sin, all its forms and variations, we have a repentant mind, our inclination is to righteousness! Therefore, any sin that we see, or in our prayer we ask God to forgive us, even those sins that we're no aware of, the hidden things! The deep things! God is washing and cleansing us!

This repentance is a true repentance, not just sorrow of the world! It's a true repentance! It is a commitment on our part to overcome, change, and turn from a way that is contrary to God, to a way that is from God; true repentance!

Why is that important? Because God's very own Spirit dwells in us!Think about it! God dwells in you! Not just with you as a physical people, but in you as a called and begotten son/daughter of God! You become part of Him, and He becomes part of us!

Here we are in this state of salvation having been saved from our trespasses and sins, those three states of salvation:

  • you have been saved
  • you are being saved
  • you shall be saved

So, being in a state of having been saved:

  • having repented
  • committed ourselves to this way of life through a covenant relationship of death in a watery grave
  • here we are raised a new person in Christ
  • we are aspiring to righteousness
  • we are aspiring to perfection
  • we are aspiring to Godliness
  • doing those things that are of God
  • we no longer relate to the world
  • we no longer relate to the things of Satan the devil

We have cast those things away from us! We are walking anew in Christ. Our lives are in Him and He in us. This is that walk that we now find ourselves in. This true repentance that we walk in, always:

  • checking
  • examining
  • understanding
  • studying
  • praying

trying to do those things that are pleasing to God!

As God's people, this is a spiritual relationship, not a physical one. So, God is dwelling in you as a begotten son/daughter, and you become part of Him!

Verse 10: "By this standard are manifest the children of God and the children of the devil. Everyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God…"—a very simple equation!

We cannot be of God and be a part of God's Family while we embrace Satan. That is just a an incompatibility and the Spirit of God will not have it! It will not allow it! It gets your attention! When sin comes around, the Spirit makes you aware. If sin raises it's ugly head in your thoughts, in your heart, in your mind, in your life, the Spirit gets your attention and drives you to that spirit of repentance, prayer, study, those things that help you to overcome!

Another aspect of this as described here in v 10 is that connectivity to the brethren and the Body. Everything that I'm describing to you for myself, or for one individual, it applies to the other. God is working this out in us!

"…and neither is the one who does not love his brother" (v 10). You're not of God if you don't love your brother! John has made that clear, and Christ made that clear.

Verse 11: "For this is the message that you heard from the beginning: that we should love one another."

This is a love that keeps us bound together in this walk with Christ. It's the love that keeps us on the right path. It's a love that keeps us pointed toward the Light and the Kingdom of God in faith, hope and love!

Verse 12—it is a true love: "Not as Cain, who was of the wicked one, and murdered his own brother. And what was the reason that he murdered him? Because his own works were wicked, but his brother's works were righteous." This being of one mind in the Body of Christ:

  • toward righteousness
  • toward Christ
  • toward God

Is what we're all striving after, lifting each other up in the journey as we go toward that!

Verse 13: "My brethren, do not be amazed if the world hates you. We know that we have passed from death into life… [from that state of the world into a state with Christ and God the Father of life] …because we love the brethren. The one who does not love his brother is dwelling in death. Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life dwelling within him" (vs 13-15). The act of love that God has for us is one of love!

Verse 16: "By this very act we have known the love of God because He laid down His life for us…"

This laying down of His life, Christ didn't do it just for the Church. Christ did it for His creation, in order that the creation might have access to life. This is something to keep in mind.

We often think of these Scriptures as though they're just written for the called and the elect. Yes, we aren't the only ones who truly have a full understanding and comprehension of God's Plan because:

  • we keep the Sabbath
  • we keep the Holy Days
  • we're studying God's Word
  • God's Spirit is dwelling within us
  • we have a more profound understanding

But we need to understand the big picture from God's point of view!

His creation and all of mankind was made for the purpose of being born into His Family! God is going to fulfill that purpose in His creation as He's going to fulfill it in each and every one of us.

Verse 17: "But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his feelings of compassion from him, how can the love of God be dwelling in him? My little children, we should not love in word, nor with our tongues; rather, we should love in deed and in Truth. And in this way we know that we are of the Truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him, that if our hearts condemn us, God is greater than our hearts, and knows all things" (vs 17-20).

Verse 21: "Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, then we have confidence toward God. And whatever we may ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and practice those things that are pleasing in His sight. And this is His commandment: that we believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and thatwe love one another, exactly as He gave commandment to us" (vs 21-23).

Here is a call to comprehension; that it is in Christ, this entire hope lies. It is because of that act of love that He did, and that act of love that the Father put forth in Him by sending Him to do it that we have this promise of eternal life.

Verse 24: "And the one who keeps His commandments is dwelling in Him, and He in him; and by this we know that He is dwelling in us: by the Spirit, which He has given to us."

Yes, we are His brothers and sisters, and as our elder Brother He voluntarily came forth to save us. He exemplified that love in His relationship with the apostle as He walked with them calling them friends, serving them and being a servant.

Yes, the relationship that we have in God's Church, God's Family, supersedes anything that's in the world. So, in the world we will experience an opportunity to experience it. 

Hebrews 2:1: "For this reason, it is imperative that we give much greater attention to the things, which we have heard, lest at any time we should slip away."

We're in this relationship with God the Father and Jesus Christ because God the Father called us to it and we accepted it and here we are in it, standing in it, experiencing it. God's Spirit is in us and we are in the Body of Christ. It really motivates us to stay connected to this Truth, the way of life!

My wife often mentions the importance of having a routine of study and having a routine of prayer, because we have seen others kind of miss the mark. How easy it is to get caught up and slip away. God tells us that we need to stay connected to Christ as well, through study, through prayer.

We need to give "…greater attention to the things, which we have heard, lest at any time we should slip away."

Verse 2: "For if the word spoken by angels was enforced without fail, and every transgression and disobedience received just recompense, how shall we escape, if we have neglected so great a salvation; which was first received when it was spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him; God also bearing witness with them by both signs and wonders, and various miracles and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?" (vs 2-5).

Verse 5: "For it is not to the angels that He has placed in subjection the world that is to come, of which we are speaking. But in a certain place one fully testified, saying, 'What is man, that You are mindful of him, or the son of man, that You visit him? You did make him a little lower than the angels; You did crown him with glory and honor, and You did set him over the works of Your hands… [God's creation and purpose was being fulfilled even in the physical] …You did put all things in subjection under his feet.' For in subjecting all things to him, He left nothing that was not subjected to him. But now we do not yet see all things subjected to him" (vs 5-8).

Verse 9: "But we see Jesus, Who was made a little lower than the angels, crowned with glory and honor on account of suffering the death, in order that by the grace of God He Himself might taste death for everyone; because it was fitting for Him, for Whom all things were created, and by Whom all things exist, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the Author of their salvation perfect through sufferings" (vs 9-10).

God is perfecting us, and we all know that trials and testings are a part perfecting process.

Verse 11: "For both He Who is sanctifying and those who are sanctified are all of one; for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying…" (vs 11-12).

Here is something that should be very much in our mind at this time in terms of where we are in the Plan of God in keeping the Holy Days. That is understanding what is represented after the Day of Pentecost:

Verse 12: "Saying, 'I will declare Your name to My brethren; in the midst of the Church I will sing praise to You.' And again, 'I will be trusting in Him.' And again, 'Behold, I and the children whom God has given Me'" (vs 12-13).

Verse 14: "Therefore, since the children are partakers of flesh and blood, in like manner He also took part in the same, in order that through death He might annul him… [take the power out of his hand] …who has the power of death—that is, the devil."

Satan holds that over our head. He pushes at us with that. He keeps us in despair and doubt, because he recognizes that sinful flesh must die! But Christ has freed us from that bondage and made a way of escape.

Verse 15: "And that He [Christ] might deliver those who were subject to bondage all through their lives by their fear of death. For surely, He is not taking upon Himself to help the angels; but He is taking upon Himself to help the seed of Abraham. For this reason, it was obligatory for Him to be made like His brethren…" (vs 15-17)—flesh!

This is God coming in the form of flesh and fulfilling that purpose for us. Not that we don't have anything to do. Obviously, that knowledge and Truth moves us now to righteousness. It motivates us in love toward God. Not out of fear. We don't obey God because we're scared of Him. We obey God because we love Him, and He loved us first!

Verse 17: "For this reason, it was obligatory for Him to be made like His brethren in everything that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, in order to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For because He Himself has suffered, having been tempted in like manner, He is able to help those who are being tempted" (vs 17-18).

So, not only did He come and succeed in being our Savior, He was placed at the right hand of the Father as High Priest, He continues to do a great work for us on our behalf. We continue to walk in that way. Yes, we are Abraham's seed!

What does that mean? We are the children of faith! Faith is a very important aspect of grace. I'm elevating this entire aspect of this relationship on the spiritual plain. Yes, we are Abraham's seed!

Romans 4:1: "What then shall we say that our father Abraham has found with respect to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has a basis for boasting… [I would also say, so does Job and other who lived righteously] …but not before God" (vs 1-2).

That boasting would not be before God. That salvation is all the way from Adam and Eve to the two witnesses.

Verse 3: "For what does the Scripture say? 'And Abraham believed God… [this knowledge of Truth that we have been give, he had] …and it was reckoned to him for righteousness.' Now, to the one who works, the reward is not reckoned according to grace; rather, it is reckoned as a debt" (vs 3-4).

Verse 5: "But to the one who does not do works of law, but believes in Him Who justifies the ungodly, his faith is reckoned for righteousness."

This is not saying that salvation doesn't require works. But this is a Truth about justification before God for salvation vs just living a righteous life. Living a righteous life is what we all aspire to and strive for. But we do it because we love God and we love Him because He loved us first! And He saved us through His Son! He applies righteousness to us!

We are being equipped and supplied with the wherewithal to achieve eternal life in God's Kingdom through this relationship made possible by:

  • this great act of love in which God sent forth
  • this great act of love and grace that we stand in

All of these things are made possible because God Himself deemed it so! This is what God is doing, and we are graciously given an opportunity to be a part of it as a firstfruit!

All the joy that will be in the Kingdom of God, and the joy that will be in the Great White Throne Judgment when we, with Christ and God the Father, bring everybody else in. That is the thing that God has in His heart. To save mankind when He sent His Son! Christ came to save not just you and me, but all of God's creation!

This is that great love that I am talking about; it is huge! It is enormous! We can't comprehend it, but is poured out upon us!

Verse 5: "But to the one who does not do works of law, but believes in Him Who justifies the ungodly, his faith is reckoned for righteousness."

Verse 6: "Even as David also declares the blessedness of the man to whom God reckons righteousness separate from works of law: 'Blessed are those whose transgressions are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not reckon  any sin'" (vs 6-8).

Verse 9: "Now then, does this blessedness come upon the circumcision only, or also upon the uncircumcision?…. [we see the context of this conversation] …For we are saying that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness. In what condition, therefore was it reckoned? When he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision" (vs 9-10).

Verse 11: "And afterwards he received the sign of circumcision, as a seal of… [his covenant with God] …the righteousness of the faith that he had in the condition of uncircumcision, that he might become the father of all those who believe…"—with my believing father Abraham, so I walk in faith:

  • I believe God's Word
  • I believe that Jesus Christ came in the flesh
  • I believe that He died and rose the third day
  • I believe that He is at the right hand of the Father

That's the belief that we in God's Family walk in. that is why we obey Him, because of these Truths. We're not trying to earn anything! We are trying to express from within the love of God that He has given to us back to Him with respect, honor and glory; all of those things that we attribute to Him!

"…that he might become the father of all those who believe though they have not been circumcised, in order that the righteousness of faith might also be reckoned to them, and that he might become the father of the circumcision—not to those who are of the circumcision only, but also to those who walk in the footsteps of the faith of our father Abraham, which he had during his uncircumcision" (vs 11-12).

When Abraham was being instructed by God, called out, he responded. He didn't question, he went and did those things because he believed God!

Verse 13: "For the promise to Abraham, or to his seed, that he should be heir of the world, was not given through works of law; rather, it was through the righteousness of faith; because if those of the works of law be the heirs, then faith is made void, and the promise is made of no effect. For the Law works out wrath; because where no Law is, there is no transgression" (vs 13-15).

Verse 16: "For this reason it is of faith, in order that it might be by grace, to the end that the promise might be certain to all the seed—not to the one who is of the Law only, but also to the one who is of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all."

Yes, I walk in the faith of my father Abraham, believing the promise that God the Father and Jesus Christ has put forth:

  • believing the Gospel
  • believing in the Word of God
  • walking, hoping and knowing with certainty

if I endure to the end, when Christ returns I will be there in His presence as a resurrected saint! A changed individual from flesh to spirit! So, we have this relationship with God.

Verse 21: "For he was fully persuaded that what He has promised, He is also able to do. As a result, it was also reckoned to him for righteousness. But it was not written for his sake alone, that it was reckoned to him; rather, it was also written for our sakes…" (vs 21-24).

As we read these words of inspiration from God, it gives us incouragement and a determination to keep going forward. It was written for our sakes!

"…to whom it shall be reckoned —to those who believe in Him Who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offenses and was raised for our justification" (vs 24-25).

So, God sent Abraham for us! Brethren, this hope, this faith has been made available to all of God's creation. The door to the Father has been opened! Reconciliation is from the one and only true God and is now accessible!

The Father, and all that He does for us, has the means to save mankind! The Father can call and offer life, because before we would not have had access to it.

This is the realization that we understand; John 6:37: "All whom the Father gives Me… [Christ says] …shall come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will in no wise cast out." It's a calling we are given to Christ!

God is going to do all things decently and in order. There is a time and a season for all things. God is going to work it out, and we just have to be patient with that!

Verse 38: "For I did not come down from heaven to do My own will, but the will of Him Who sent Me. And this is the will of the Father Who sent Me: that of all whom He has given Me, I should not lose any, but should raise them up in the last day" (vs 38-39).

This is God's desire! His good desire to give us the Kingdom of God. Not that we should be lost! We have a willing participant given from God to us. We have to be willing and trusting and walking in faith with Him! IF we believe Him, He'll get us there!

Verse 40: "And this is the will of Him Who sent Me: that everyone who sees the Son, and believes in Him, may have eternal life…"

It is work on our part. There is continued faith, continued effort and commitment, and work on our part spiritually with through the power of God's Spirit with us:

  • to study and pray
  • overcome
  • grow in knowledge and grace

Doing those things that God instructs us to do!

"'…and I will raise him up at the last day.' Then the Jews were complaining against Him, because He said, 'I AM the Bread that came down from heaven.'  And they were saying, 'Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? Why then does He say, "I came down from heaven"?'" (vs 40-42).

Verse 43: "For this reason, Jesus answered them and said, 'Do not be complaining among one another. No one can come to Me unless the Father, Who sent Me, draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, "And they shall all be taught by God." Therefore, everyone who has heard from the Father, and has learned, comes to Me. No one has seen the Father except He Who is from God; He has seen the Father. Truly, truly I say to you, the one who believes in Me has eternal life'" (vs 43-47). There is that trusting, belief and faith!

  • we believed God
  • we believe God
  • we trust God

He says, 'I am the Bread of Life,' so we embrace Him and everything that is from Him! We incorporate that into our lives and Truth and the one True Way!

What did the angels say when they were announcing His Spirit:

Luke 2:11: "For today, in the city of David, a Savior was born to you, Who is Christ the Lord. Now, this is the sign for you: you shall find a Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.'…. [a Savior has come into the world] …And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest, and peace on earth among men of goodwill'" (vs 11-14).

This is the rejoicing that we have in this knowledge and Truth, We are part of this great and magnificent act as firstfruits now. But we're going to help Christ take it to the rest of mankind at the appropriate time.

Isaiah 60:1: "Arise, shine; for your Light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you, for behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people; but the LORD shall arise upon you, and His glory shall be seen upon you. And the Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. Lift up your eyes all around, and see. All of them gather themselves together; they come to you. Your sons shall come from far, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side. Then you shall see and become radiant, and your heart shall throb and swell for joy; because the abundance of the sea shall turn to you, the wealth of the Gentiles will come to you. A host of camels shall cover you, the camels of Midian and Ephah. All of them from Sheba shall come; they shall bring gold and incense; and they shall proclaim the praises of the LORD" (vs 1-6).

This day is coming! This is a Millennial setting! This is that which we are looking forward to, as well!

Verse 19: "The sun will no more be your light by day; nor the brightness of the moon give light to you; but the LORD will be to you for an everlasting Light, and your God your glory. Your sun will no more go down, nor your moon withdraw; for the LORD will be your everlasting Light, and the days of your mourning shall be ended. Your people also will all be righteous; they will inherit the land forever, the branch of My planting, the work of My hands, so that I may be glorified. A smallest will become a thousand, and the least one a strong nation: I the LORD will hasten it in its time" (vs 19-22).

There is much yet out in front of us in terms of what we have to look forward to.

John 3:5: "Jesus answered, 'Truly, truly I say to you, unless anyone has been born of water and of Spirit, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God. That which has been born of the flesh is flesh; and that which has been born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I said to you, "It is necessary for you to be born again." The wind blows where it wills, and you hear its sound, but you do not know the place from which it comes and the place to which it goes; so also is everyone who has been born of the Spirit'" (vs 5-8).

Verse 9: "Nicodemus answered and said to Him, 'How can these things be?' Jesus answered and said to him, 'You are a teacher of Israel, and you do not know these things? Truly, truly I say to you, We speak that which We know, and We testify of that which We have seen; but you do not receive Our testimony.  If I have told you earthly things, and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? (And no one has ascended into heaven, except He Who came down from heaven, even the Son of man, Who is in heaven.)" (vs 9-13).

Verse 14: "And even as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, in the same way it is ordained that the Son of man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish, but may have everlasting life" (vs 14-15).

  • we're continuing to see the Plan of God unfold
  • we're continuing to see the act of love bear fruit

Those whom God calls now have access to eternal life!

  • may have eternal life
  • can have eternal life

But there's no such thing as 'once saved always saved'! We have to stay on this path of faith and walk in faith just like our father Abraham did.

Verse 17: "For God sent not His Son into the world that He might judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. The one who believes in Him is not judged, but the one who does not believe has already been judged because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the judgment: that the Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness rather than the Light because their works were evil" (vs 17-19).

Verse 20: "For everyone who practices evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light, so that his works may not be exposed; but the one who practices the Truth comes to the Light, so that his works may be manifested, that they have been accomplished by the power of God" (vs 20-21).

This is the journey that you and I are on! This is the walk that we are on, this walk of righteousness.

  • we go to the Light
  • we seek the Light
  • we want the Light in our life
  • we pray for the Light of God to be poured out upon us

so that

  • our eyes are opened
  • our mind is opened
  • our understanding is opened

That the Spirit of God is growing in us so that we can do the things of God!

In Rom. 8 we have a summation of this Truth so that this walk that we have, this faith that we're exercising that has been made possible for us; and for all mankind at some point.

Romans 8:1: "Consequently, there is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who are not walking according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit; because the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus has delivered me from the law of sin and death" (vs 1-2). Yes, there is Life in Christ! He came to bring it!

Let's read these verse in John with a good understanding, and continue to ask God to help us to comprehend this love that He has expressed to us in the way:

John 1:1: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with the God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and not even one thing that was created came into being without Him. In Him was life, and the Life was the Light of men" (vs 1-4).

We seek after the Light, we are drawn to that Light of God, because there is Life in Him!

Verse 5: "And the Light shines in the darkness… [He pulled us out of that darkness to His Light] …but the darkness does not comprehend it."

1-John 3:1: "Behold! What glorious love the Father has given to us, that we should be called the children of God! For this very reason, the world does not know us because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are the children of God, and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be; but we know that when He is manifested, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him exactly as He is" (vs 1-2).

John 3:3: "Jesus answered and said to him, 'Truly, truly I say to you, unless anyone is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.'"

This rebirth, this Life in Christ that is a result of that relationship is what we're looking for!

1-Timothy 3:16: "And undeniably, great is the mystery of Godliness… [here it's kind of summed up]: …God was manifested in the flesh, was justified in the Spirit, was seen by angels, was proclaimed among the Gentiles, was believed on in the world, was received up in glory." That's a summary of that act itself!

We stand here in this relationship with God. We celebrate it at the spring festivals, we renewed our covenant relationship and walk with God at Passover. We came through the days of Unleavened Bread. We recognized that we have to get sin out of our life. We can only do that through the power that God gives us to get  it done!

So we celebrate at the Feast of Pentecost, recognizing that the Spirit of God was given to the Church on that day. God continues to work with us through His Spirit!

Philippians 2:5: "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus; Who, although He existed in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but emptied Himself, and was made in the likeness of men… [God born in the flesh] …and took the form of a servant; and being found in the manner of man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross" (vs 5-8).

Verse 9: "Therefore, God has also highly exalted Him and bestowed upon Him a name, which is above every name; that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow took the form of a servant, of beings in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father. So then, my beloved, even as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling" (vs 9-12).

This reminds us; v 13: "For it is God Who works in you both to will and to do according to His good pleasure."

God is going to continue to fulfill that purpose for which He made mankind. He's going to see it through to the end. Here is the realization that we have to keep in our mind: We being firstfruits of God will have a part in the fulfilling of—the final fulfillment—that great Plan onto the rest of mankind. The love that saved the world was that the Father and His Son to act for us.

  • continue to keep you focus on that
  • continue to walk in that hope and faith

Don't let anything turn you from that hope that is within you!

Scriptural References:

  • Ephesians 2:1-5
  • 1 John 3:1-7, 4-8, 10-24
  • Hebrews 2:1-18
  • Romans 4:1-16, 21-25
  • John 6:37-47
  • Luke 2:11-14
  • Isaiah 60:1-6, 19-22
  • John 3:5-15, 17-21
  • Romans 8:1-2
  • John 1:1-5
  • 1 John 3:1-3
  • John 3:3
  • 1 Timothy 3:16
  • Philippians 2:5-13

Transcribed: 6/27/23

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