Hi this is our Blog on Grace. We hope and pray that the Grace of God will flood into your life like it has ours. A good place to start is to listen to the mp3 messages, they will not only turn your world around, you will feel like you have just been saved all over again!

Monday, 18 August 2008

Wayne's World...(17Aug08)


Worship as living Sacrifices-Burning on the Alter
Wayne Duncan

Chapter 12v1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will. 3For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. 4Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. 6We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. 9Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality. 14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. 17Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord. 20On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

For those of you who don't know…I am a surfer. Love it. Love the waves. The cool water, the closeness to nature and to God. Love catching waves, the feeling of speed as you fly down a wave, smacking a section. It's all tremendously satisfying.

Now we recently had a bad patch of waves. Terrible waves for a few weeks. This leaves a surfer feeling rather frustrated. We end up having what we call "slop sessions". This is surfing inferior waves, to stay fit. In the vain hope that we might find one good one amongst the mess.

To make things worse, I am in training. Trying to loose some extra kilos, get fit again. So I'm trying to diligently surf often regardless of the conditions.

Just to heighten the pressure on myself. I'm going on holiday for 10 days to one of the finest waves in the world. J-Bay and seals. Awesome waves. At a time of the year when you can get really big waves.

Well the weather changes, the west wind came through, and our best surf spot began to take shape. Finally we had good waves. The wind was good, the waves just right. Finally waves.

Here is what happened. As I was getting in my car to go surf, two people arrived to see my mom. I greeted them and headed for the beach. Reaching the beach I ran down to the look out spot to find…waves. Good waves. Two of my friends already out there enjoying the first good waves in weeks.

I excitedly ran back to the car. As I got to the car, I felt the holy spirit say.."go home and talk to those people, I want you to minister to the one person". It was clear…

Now the dilemma…what about the surf? So came the struggle, and the excuses…

Well they are going to another person in the church later for ministry..they can do it..

I really deserve this surf…i worked my off day, and night!!!

God wont mind if I don't!

I'm under grace, I don't have to do it!

God will still love me if I don't…

I don't feel like it!

So I decided to surf…but then I knew…

I will not enjoy it…I will feel bad, I will feel selfish, I feel that I missed the mark.

There was a tremendous clash between two forces within me. One that wanted to surf, one that wanted to do God's will.

I grabbed the steering wheel and literally let out a scream in pure frustration…

Settled now in my heart I went home. Where a wonderful time of sharing and ministry and love took place…It was a good time, and someone's life was changed, and a relationship was strengthened…

Friends, we will not always want to do the right thing!

Sometimes we need to do things we don't want to do!

It's called sacrifice. Out of love, no rules, no law, no manipulation, no condemnation when we don't. But something of a life surrendered to the prompting of God. A deep commitment within to do what he asks, and go where and when He says. Living in this place of submission our of love I think is something of what is going on in this passage…

Present yourselves as living sacrifices…Lord..I'll burn for you. I lay myself and all I am in worship to you on the alter…I lay me down. I give you my all. My ambitions, my plans, my weaknesses, my strengths, all I am good and bad…are yours…

Friends I'm talking about yielding to Him. Let's be totally constantly yielded to Him. This is our spiritual act of worship.

A totally yielded life towards God. A yielded marriage, a yielded job, a yielded prayer and word life. A relationship centered, love centered experience with God. A brokenness of surrender to God.

"Lord I want you and only you. I want your ways and nothing else. I want your will and noting else. Burn away that that is not of you. I give you all and my all. All I am. Everything, I yield it to you. Stir me Lord. Lead me Lord, guide me Lord, use me Lord. Lord I die, live through me. Let my life be yours. My thoughts yours. My words yours. I give me to you"

I think this is part of what it means, part of what "this is your spiritual act of worship" means..

Lets worship Him! Not that we can help it. We love Him. He loves us. Never to count our sins against us. He is always good, always faithful. It's not that we must worship Him…it's that once we see Him for who he really is, and see all he has done..when we see his grace…we cant help worshipping Him.




Friday, 15 August 2008

Wayne's World...(15Aug08)

 

"Gospel thinking goes likes this, "If I follow God's commandments and do everything that God says in His Word 99.9 % of the time, what will be the result?" The answer is quite simple and found in both the books of Deuteronomy and Galatians: I will be 100% cursed."

Peter Youngren

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Praising with Pucky...(14Aug08)

 
A friend sent this to me today...amazing!

Hey Guys I've Added to the limitless ocean of Gods Grace. This is great.........
 
1. The fullness of the eternal plan of God. Eph 3 : 18
2. Full redemption. Heb 6: 9-12
3. Reconciliation 2 Cor5:18
4. Forgiven Eph4:3
5. Death of the old man and old nature Rom6:6
6. Free from the law Rom 8:2
7. The birthing Galations 4 :19 and 1 Pet 1:20
8. Adoption Rom 8:15
9. Acceptable to God 1 Pet 2:5
10. Totally justified Rom4 :5
11 Made right by the blood Eph 2 :13
12 Delivered from the power of darkness Col 1:13
13 Translated into the kingdom of His dear Son 2 Peter 1 :11
14. Planted on the Rock 1 Cor 3 :9-15
15. We are made as a gift from God to Christ John 17:11
16. We are immediately circumcised in Christ Eph 2:11 and Col 2:11
17 Partakers of divine nature 2 Peter 1 :4
18 Made a chosen generation 1 Peter 2 :9
19 Made a heavenly citizen Phil 3 :20
20. In the family and household of God. Eph 2 :19
21. In the fellowship of the the saints. John 17 :21-23
22. An instant heavenly association. 1 Cor 1 :9
23 Total access to the heavenly Father Heb 4 :16
24 Safe in the care of the Father. Romans 5 :8-10
25. Full inheritance from the Father. Eph 1 :18
26. A recipient of the finished work of the cross. John 17 : 4 and Heb 4 :3
27. Light on the things of God. 1 John 1 :7
28. United to the Father. 1 Thes 1:1 and Joined to the Son 1 Cor 6 :17
29. Blessed with the earnest of the first fruits. 2 Cor 1 : 22
30. Glorified. Rom 8 : 18
31. Complete in Him. Col 2 : 9-10
32. Posesses every spiritual blessing. Eph 1 : 3 
 

Wayne' World...(14Aug08)


Daily Rhythms


Legalism Arouses and Aggravates Sinful Passions

Does the Honeymoon have to end? Mine did. I had months and months of powerful times with God, but it ended. However, remember that God didn't end the honeymoon, I did, with legalism. I suspect this happens to most Christians. We begin totally by grace, the gift of righteousness. But then we can't rest there, and grow there. Grace is too radical: It is diametrically opposed to the world system in which we are immersed. Our world system defines human worth mainly in terms of production, beauty, power and wealth. Thus, we feel insecure with grace, and we grasp again at a legalistic, production basis for acceptance.

Legalism is any attempt on our part to establish legal righteousness for ourselves before God. Legalism is essentially self-righteousness. But God uses our thickness of skull! Because the pain and the pride of our legalism will ultimately drive us back to justification by faith. Beginning with Romans 3:20 here are the basics of this process:

….because by the works of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the law comes the knowledge of sin.

See, ultimately, instead of perfecting us, our legalism exposes our sinfulness simply because we always fail to keep the law perfectly. Here is a fact worth remembering: Any spiritual principle, no matter how biblical, which is used legalistically (made into a law for righteousness) will do one thing for sure. It will show us that we are in sin. So we are forced to go back to justification by faith. Rom 3:20 is pure and simple truth. Through the law comes, not righteousness, but the knowledge of sin. If you sin (or if you are a human being) legalism will make you worse.

When we were controlled by our old nature, sinful desires were at work within us, and the law aroused these evil desires that produced sinful deeds, resulting in death. Romans 7:5

You see, God's law relating to morality can actually arouse sinful passions. This is not because God's law is evil but because of the weakness of our flesh and God's law diagnoses the problem for us. Thus any legalism, especially when it is based on biblical principles, will aggravate rather than alleviate your sinful desires. Externally, law can control sinful passions, even as a prison can contain criminals. Thus, civil law can externally control society. Galatians 3:23 enunciates this principle clearly, speaking of being, "kept in custody under the law," and "being shut up" (as in Rom 11:32). This terminology is usually termed incarceration, imprisonment. But incarceration is not transformation. It is external, not internal. It is prison, not freedom. And God never implies that the Law by itself transforms anyone.

Well, if God's law used legalistically arouses sinful passions, and if the law merely incarcerates, does it have any value beyond revealing or exposing sin? Yes, the Law has great value beyond diagnosing sin, but only if we use it lawfully. That is, we must us the Law properly, not attempting to use it to establish legal righteousness. Once you know this you will learn to love God's Law (Michael Eaton – If you walk by the Spirit of God you will accidentally obey the law). The Psalmist said,

Those who love Thy law have great peace, and nothing causes them to stumble. Psalm 119:165

All of Psalm 119 sounds like this. The law can be a dear friend. But if you use it to establish legal righteousness, the Law automatically turns against you. God doesn't want His Law to be your enemy and that's why He, cancelled the record that contained the charges against us. He took it and destroyed it by nailing it to the cross. Colossians 2:14

The Lord wants His entire Word to be for you, not against you. Let no one deceive you: Even the Psalmist knew grace and mercy, or else he could not have loved the law. Grace and mercy were available in the Old Testament too. We will have more to say concerning how the entire bible, including the moral Law, can work as your dear friend. But you can't get there until you've been here. The Law of God militates against legalism because it constantly reveals our sin and our need for grace. Thus, just in case you've fled back to legalism because grace was too simple therefore too difficult, the Law of God works on your sin; even arousing and aggravating it, to bring you back to grace. If per chance you have succeeded in legal righteousness, then the word of God will ultimately reveal spiritual pride and self-righteousness in you, to bring you back to grace, and to His righteousness and obedience

Will you return to grace today? Jesus is calling you now. You can begin a new honeymoon with the Lord today. You can experience, afresh and anew, the joy of your salvation. You can experience security and power of imputed righteousness and forsake the insecurity of legal righteousness.

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Wayne's World...(12Aug08)

 
Daily Rhythms

Imputed Righteousness
 
The first essential point we have made is that our righteousness can't satisfy God. And furthermore, because we are so imperfect (by behaviour), our own righteousness seldom satisfies us either. Christians who are somehow satisfied with works righteousness are in for trouble.
God's requirement is nothing less than His righteousness and His holiness. Our righteousnes can't earn for us RIGHT STANDING before God. Such RIGHT STANDING before God must be imputed to us, as a gift, by God Himself.
How many people have you talked to who will say, "Hey, I'm a good person. I haven't murdered anybody. I try keep the rules. I try to help my neighbors, etc.
But the issue in the gospel is God's righteousness. So the issue in the Gospel is this. Who does God recognize as righteous? To whom does God impute RIGHT STANDING? What is God's criterion for RIGHT STANDING before Him? The bible clearly announces that there are people to whom God imputes righteousness. Who are they? In ROM 4:3 Paul quoted Genesis 15:6 which says,
 
"AND ABRAHAM BELIEVD GOD, AND IT WAS RECKONED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS"
 
Here's what Paul said about how this applies to you:   
 
What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, has found? For if Abraham
was justified by works, he has something to boast about; but not to before God. For what does the scripture
say " and Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to Him as righteousness."
Now to the one who works, his wage is not reckoned (or counted) as a favour but as what is due.
But to the one who does not work (to be made right), but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his
faith is reckoned as righteousness. ROM 4:1-5
 
Here is what happened  between Abraham and God: God made a promise to Abraham, Abaham believe it, and the Lord reckoned Abraham's simple faith to Abraham as righteousness. In other words, God counted Abraham as righteous on the basis of faith alone. This, then, is how God "justifies the ungodly."
According to Paul, the Gospel works exactly this way for us. The Lord has promised right standing before Him (righteousness) to anyone who will put their faith in the finished work of Christ for sins and eternal life. Therefore, like Abraham, when we simply believe this promise of God, the Lord reckons (imputes, counts) righteousness to us.
Anyone qualifies for this grace - every day! You can simply believe God and receive the gift of imputed righteousness. And the best part is that this imputed righteousness is God's righteousnss, nothing less. Futhermore, understand that this salvation is the only salvation. And it is God's best, not some lukewarm compromise. Then, and only then
 
......much more those who receive the abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness will reign in
life through the One, Jesus Christ. ROM 5:17
 
It's that simple and most awesomely profound.
 
This is the Gospel your friends and family need to hear. so let them hear. Go ahead I dare you, share Jesus with someone today. 

Monday, 11 August 2008

Wayne's World...(11Aug08)

IT IS ALWAYS ALL OF GRACE!
 
"When we learn about grace we learn what life is all about. We learn about who we are. But more importantly we learn about who God is, what the gospel is and our relationship with Him. We enter into a dimension of life we never dreamed possible.  Nothing is changed and yet everything is changed. Grace is not just getting what you don't deserve. Grace is getting the opposite of what you deserve. Grace is not just another doctrine. Grace is the way God relates to us. Grace is the gospel as the bible says (Acts 20:24).  What is grace?
 
1. Grace is knowing that there is no more guilt, condemnation and punishment (Rom, 8:2).
 
2. Grace is knowing that God loves me and accepts me just the way I am not because of what I do, but because of the cross (Rom. 5:5-8).
 
3. Grace is knowing that Satan was defeated at the cross and has no power over me and the only weapon he has is the lie. (Col. 2:15).
 
4. Grace is knowing that because I died to the law and have been released from it (Rom. 7:4,6), I don't have to live up to anyone's standards.
 
5. Grace is knowing that I am not under law but under grace (Rom. 6:14) and that Christ is the end of the law (Rom. 10:4), it is not up to me to live the Christian life, but to     trust Christ in me to do it (Gal. 2:20).
 
6. Grace is knowing that there is nothing I can do to make God love me more and nothing I could do to make him love me less (Rom. 8:39).
 
7. Grace is knowing that Jesus said that all who come to Him will find that the Christian life is easy and their burden is light (Matt. 11:28-30).
 
8. Grace is knowing that it is not up to me to do or die or strive and strain, but to believe that He will do it all for me (1 Thess. 5:24).
 
9. Grace is knowing that my sin and failure cannot overcome the grace of God (contrary to popular belief) (Rom. 5:20,21).
 
10. Grace is knowing that no matter what I do or how I mess up, God is going to love me through all eternity (Rom. 11:6; 1 John 3:1; 1 John 4:6).
 
11. Grace is knowing that I have all I need because Christ is in me and I am in Him and He is in the Father (John 14:20).
 
12. Grace is knowing that freedom is my birthright as a child of God and not something I have to attain (Gal. 5:1; John 8:32,36).
 
13. Grace is knowing that I am dead to sin and alive to God because of what God has done and nothing that I do (Rom. 6:4-7).
 
14. Grace is knowing that I am righteous because God has placed me in Christ and not because of anything I do (I Cor. 1:30; 2 Cor. 5:21).
 
15. Grace is knowing that I have died to the world, it's customs, ways, values and people's demands and expectations of me (Gal. 6:13).
 
16. Grace is knowing that the important thing is not what I do or don't do, but faith in what God has done and who I am in Christ (Gal. 6:5,14).
 
17. Grace is knowing that I am secure in Christ, that I do not have to fear any person and that He will never leave me or forsake me (Heb. 13:5,6).
 
18. Grace is knowing that Christ is my life; that my life is hidden in Him and I have everything I need for life and godliness (Col. 3:3,4; 2 Pet. 1:3).
 
19. Grace is knowing that victory is not something to work for, but it has already been given to me (1 Cor. 15:56; Eph.2:6; Eph 1:19-21).
 
 
 

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Wayne's World...(10Aug08)

 
The bread and the wine
 
Wayne Duncan
 
Why do we do it?
 
The bread:
 
1 Corinthians 11: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, "This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me." 25In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me."
 
Question: Why do we do it?
 
Question: What is the bread symbolic of?
 
This was a prophecy about Jesus. A prophecy concerning His death on the cross.
 
Isaiah 53:5 But he was pierced (crucified) for our transgressions (sin), he was crushed for our iniquities(unrighteousness); the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed
 
Question: What happened to His body and in each case what did it do for us?
 
Pierced for our……
 
Crushed for our……
 
Punished for our…..
 
Wounded for our…..
 
As Christians we now walk into these promises. He did this for us so that as Christians we may have this great inheritance. NOTE: This is something He did for us! Out of His great Love!
 
The wine:
 
"This cup is the new covenant in my blood"
 
New Covenant Promised
 
Jeremiah 31v33"This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time," declares the LORD. "I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. 34No longer will a man teach his neighbor, or a man his brother, saying, `Know the LORD,' because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest," declares the LORD. "For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more."
 
Jeremiah prophesied a time when the law would be cancelled. A new way would be set in motion. God Himself would write His laws on our minds and hearts.
 
How does God write the law on our minds and hearts?
 
He would be our God. We are His people, His beloved possession.
 
He would make Himself known to us.
 
He would forgive our sins and remember them no more!
 
Old Covenant : Law and Judgement and Punishment
 
New Covenant: Grace and Peace and Mercy.
 
How were sins forgiven in the old Covenant?...by sacrifices and the shedding of blood.
 
How are sins forgiven in the new Covenant?...by faith in Jesus sacrifice, and the shedding of His blood.
 
 
Heb 10v14 because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy. 15The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. First he says: 16"This is the covenant I will make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds." 17Then he adds: "Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more." 18And where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin. 19Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24
 
(what are some of the things we learn from this text?)
 
We can now boldly approach God whenever we want or need!
 
Thank you Jesus, we remember you, and all that you did!! And all you continue to do. The New Covenant is today!!
 
 

Friday, 08 August 2008

Daily Rhythms

Daily Rhythms
 
Imprisoned for Mercy

We have said, our righteousness can't do it. It can't satisfy God and it seldom satisfies us.Those who are satisfied with their own righteousness are in a world of trouble, but don't know it yet.
Today I want to expand our understanding of why our righteousness cant do it. The bible says that the entire world is under the penalty of sin, death:
 
For the wages of sin is death... ROM 6:23a
 
We already know this - it's why most of us became Christians. Death is obvious and we want eternal life. But the bible also constantly declares that all humanity is imprisoned not only under the penalty of sin but also the power of sin, enslavement. That is we human beings are unable to extricate ourselves from sin. Sin has power over us. The penalty and the power - both an undeniable reality. Humanity struggles to free itself from its prison of sin, and from death, as if some human cure is possible, but sin and death continue unabated.
 
...for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
...God gave them over to the lusts of their hearts
ROM 3:23; 1:24
 
Both of these verses refer to all humanity. See here God gave us over to our lusts. In other words, He gave us over to the power of sin. Thus we are unable to free ourselves from the power of sin. We are imprisoned by sin so that the Apostle Paul cried,
 
Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? ROM 7:24
 
Perhaps it is not difficult to see why the Lord ordained that the penalty for sin should be death. Clearly sin cannot give life. Nor can the Lord allow the universe to be filled with eternal sinners. NO, sin must have an end. Therefore there must be death. All this makes sense. But why would a good God turn us over to the power of sin so that we are unable to free ourselves? Is this a cruel hoax? NO, it is the wisdom of God:
 
For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that He may have mercy on them all. ROM 11:32
 
Here is God's program: All of us are bound (shut up, imprisoned) in disobedience (under the power of sin), so that God can have mercy on us. Our imprisonment is effective because it only leaves us with one alternative: If we want to be forgiven and freed from the penalty and power of sin we must accept God's mercy (God's willingness and desire to treat us better than we deserve). In other words we have been imprisoned for mercy. That is why the word of God says. God's will is mercy. It makes sense, and it is God's will, that we have been unable to free ourselves from sin so that we put our hope totally in God's mercy. Note, Totally. Not partly in God's mercy and partly in human ability. That is why Peter told us,
 
...fix your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 1PET1:13b
 
The primary issue is placing our hope completely in the grace of God. This means that the primary issue is trusting Christ and His finished work on the cross, plus nothing!. This sounds radical, and it is. But it is also biblical. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is radical because nothing less can accomplish His purposes in us. Works righteousness is dead! The performance basis for right standing before God is dead! The plan is to demonstrate many times from Scripture and from experience that, even after you become a Christian, the only way to maintain freedom for the power of sin is to continue to receive God's mercy. And, don't kid yourself, if you persist in works righteousness the Lord will allow you to fail in order to drive you back to trusting totally on His mercy. Even as a Christian, sin will seem to prevail untill you forsake work righteousness and begin trusting God's mercy as a way of life. Someone will question this and say that the Bible teaches us that God has transferred us from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son (COL 1:13), so how can sin still have power over us? Of course, this transfer is complete, but it happened totally on the basis of grace. Many Christians forget this, and they return again to works righteousness (your attempts to find acceptance and approval from God by your performance). Struggles, defeats and failures still do happen. God is not the cause remember. Our doing it on our own usually leads us there. Many Christians say they know grace, but their struggles and defeats indicate quite the opposite.
Don't depend upon your own human ability to grasp and apply grace. Rather, repent of that, and right now, ask the Lord Himself to begin to reveal His grace to you - what it means and how it really works.
"O Lord, have mercy upon us and grant us that we may see and know and accept your grace. Allow that we may learn to fix our hope totally in Jesus Christ and His shed blood."
 
Follow His lead today, and enjoy being in Jesus. Remember you are who He says you are. His Beloved.

Wayne's World...(7Aug08)

 
Daily Rhythms got this from Richard Oliver Port Shepstone...thought it might bless ya
 
Our Righteousness can't do it...

This is the issue every Christian must face: Our righteousness can't do it. What do I mean by this? Let me explain.

The Body of Christ to date has had access to more teaching and preaching than any church in history. Technology has made an overabundance of Christian tapes, books and TV available to us. All of these are a blessing. But, for many of us, our knowledge has outstripped our ability. If we are honest, most of us must admit that we're not applying what we have learned. We're not living up to Gods expectations. We're striving too much. Our righteousness is falling short of the mark.

Grace applies to every Christian, but many of us are in an especially good place to receive it. Perhaps you have gradually realized that the majority of your attempts at righteousness are falling short of the mark, and perhaps you are feeling quite confused and condemned about it. Perhaps you came to this realization many years ago and your zeal for the Lord gradually cooled, and you became more or less a nominal Christian, because you lost hope that you could live a victorious Christian life. Perhaps you gave up. You may think God gave up on you.

But something good is going to happen to you even if you don't expect it: You have finally come to a place where the Lord Himself can intervene powerfully in your life.

While the Lord has not caused you to fail, He has allowed failure in order to reveal to you that your righteousness can't do it. This usually happens thru a process (familiar with every generation of Gods people) where struggles continue, trying to be spiritual, trying to be holy, reading everybody's exhortations and formulas, and zealously applying new keys to true spirituality, or learning new principles which apply to the deeper life, or to healing, or to prosperity; and then, after all those years of striving, you discover that many of the standard formulas don't seem to work, and worse yet, your righteousness still has blemishes all over it.

Or, on the other hand, perhaps you are the sort of person that usually succeeds at your own righteousness. Then the Lord reveals your own spiritual inadequacy in quite another fashion, in that, even though you do manage to sustain your spiritual performance, nevertheless there remains a deep hunger for more holiness and power in your soul (mind, will & emotions). And there is recognition that, with all your success, the true spirituality and the abiding peace and the lasting satisfaction which you expected haven't been realized. Where are they? I thought Christians were supposed to have them!

You have them sometimes, maybe in worship or praise, but they are all to fleeting. You have tried to obey the biblical injunction to be holy as your Heavenly Father is Holy and you have usually tried to respond zealously to preaching which exhorted you to aim at perfection. But you are becoming discouraged, and exhausted!

Face it. Your righteousness and spiritual activity can't do it. God wants you to be totally convinced of this biblical and practical reality. Totally convinced. Why? Because the requirement of God is nothing less than His righteousness and His Holiness! Always. The Lord expects and accepts nothing less than His Own righteousness and His Own Holiness. The peace which you seek cannot be found in your own righteousness. The only sort of peace which can ever satisfy your soul is peace with God.

The standard in the Gospel is always God's righteousness. But how do we get this? Bible tells us.

 

But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and Prophets testify.

This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference,

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by His grace through the redemption

that came by Christ Jesus.   ROM 3:21-24

 

See, God's standard is always God's righteousness, and that is where you must find your peace, through faith in Jesus Christ and His righteousness:

 

Therefore having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. ROM 5:1

 

Perhaps you are a new Christian, or perhaps, up until now, you have not hit a brick wall. Thank God, because, if you learn grace now, you can avoid alot of the pain and confusion which the rest of us have suffered. Begin now to allow the Lord to show you how to live in His righteousness rather than your own.

 

Thursday, 07 August 2008

newsletters@gracefortheheart.org

Unity
 
Someone told the story of a man who wandered into town on a Sunday morning and stood on a corner that had three churches.  He could hear loud singing coming from each of them.  The first church was singing, "Will there be any stars in my crown?"  The second sang, "No, not one.  No, not one."  At that the third church began a rousing chorus of "O that will be glory for me!" 
 
Well, that pretty much sums up the state of the church in America today, doesn't it?  Comparisons, competition, and controversies.  We are hardly one Church. 
 
Yet, the prayer of Jesus was that we would all be one.  He desired unity in the hearts of His people.  It shouldn't surprise us that His love desires unity.
 
And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.  John 17:22-23
 
Our unity is an acknowledgment of His love for us.  Anything less than unity in the Church is evidence of a wrong focus in our hearts.  But how do we find unity when our doctrines differ so greatly?  And, even more pointedly, how do we find unity when our opinions differ so greatly?
 
This is where the message of grace in the Person and work of Jesus changes everything.  When we begin to understand just who we are in Christ and Who He is in us, the walls that divide God's people begin to fall.  In fact, there are no real walls between us in Christ.  (Romans 12:5; Galatians 3:28)
 
In 1 Corinthians 4:7, Paul asks, "What do you have that you did not receive?"  He wants us to understand that everything we have in Christ, which is everything we need, is a gift.  It was not our goodness or understanding that brought it to us.  The Lord gave us what we need as a gift.  That's what grace is all about.  We have received all things in Him. 
 
And, since we have received all good things as a gift, then we have nothing in which to boast.  It is Jesus alone Who saves us, sanctifies us, and glorifies us.  The very life that flows within each of us is His life.  There is no opportunity for us to pat ourselves on the back, to compare ourselves favorably against others, or to boast about our spirituality.
 
But there's more.  The life that flows in every Christian is the life of Christ.  Even when those Christians don't worship like we do and even when they don't interpret the Scriptures as we do.  You and I have been taught that doctrine matters, but are we prepared to condemn someone who trusts in Jesus just because he or she holds a doctrine that is different from ours?  Now that I understand grace, that everything I have is a gift from the Lord who loves me, I can no longer condemn any brother or sister in Christ.  I may not agree with their views, but we are still one in Him.  Little by little I am growing into "unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God."  (Ephesians 4:13)
 
Two things have convinced me.  First, the wonder and majesty of Jesus.  I have seen in Him an incredible creativity and variety that I dare not ignore.  He will not fit into my box, no matter how I define it.  And, second, my total dependence on Him.
 
Those who teach grace are accused of many things.  When we are accused of being too accepting and too loving, particularly toward other believers, I think we are on the right track
 

Sunday, 03 August 2008

Wayne's World...(3Aug08)

The ministry of the Holy Spirit is superior to the ministry of man.
by Wayne Duncan
 
What I'm praying for, and what I'm trusting God for is related to the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
 
Were contending in God for every member of this body to live a life out of the overflow of being filled with the Holy Spirit.
 
We could talk about this in many ways…
 
We could talk about being those who live by the Spirit.
 
We could talk about being people who live for substance and not structure.
 
We could talk about being those who prefer presence to principle.
 
We could talk about program as apposed to power.
 
We could talk about being those who want the wine more that the wineskin.
 
We could talk about experience as opposed to entertainment…
 
It's my dream for every believer, and every church to walk in the glorious life and liberty and power that the work of the Spirit brings. Not for a day, or a week or a month…no permanently…
 
Acts 1:8 But when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you will receive power and will tell people about me everywhere
 
I Cor2:4 My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power,
 
Were contending for a habitation, not a visitation.
 
Were contending for a ministry of power.
 
We don't want "wise" or "persuasive", we want power. Not token power, or a little power. Not just for one or two. We want high level, high volume, explosive Spirit power for every believer for the tiniest child to the most seasoned granny!!
 
I don't want to preach, go to the nations, lead a home group, be a dad, be a Christian, travel apostolically…without power. I don't want to be wise and persuasive…I want power.
 
That's why I run to those who have power. I want what they Got!!!
 
I want to partner with those who are seeing and longing for the same.
 
Rob Rufus, Fini and Isi De Gersigny, Bill Johnson…Ant Redman. They operate in power. I want it too!
 
I want their voices in my life. I receive their ministry. It changes me.
 
Even some stranger guys, who's theology I cant totally endorse, but I would gladly place my head under their hands for an impartation of anointing. Todd Bentley, Kobus Van Rensburg, Benny Hinn and others. I want what they got. They carry powerful anointing, and see powerful moves of God. More than I see at my hands. We need to be aware of criticizing and condemning those who do what we can't. Humility causes growth. Pride restricts it. We see movements and organizations condemning people like this, yet they have no power themselves. They should be running to these guys to learn!
 
You know friends, everything comes alive when God comes on the scene.
 
The impossible becomes possible…
 
The thirsty satisfied…
 
The hopeless sees opportunity…
 
The weak become strong…
 
The gifts spring to life…
 
People change…
 
Churches change…
 
Communities change…
 
There is revival…
 
There can be no revival without a powerful move of God.
 
There can be no move of God without the ministry of His Spirit.
 
Rick Joyner says "the goal of the church is to fill people with God"
 
Take the ministry of the Holy Spirit out of the church, and it will become dry, cerebral, principal based, religious, traditional and powerless.
 
For me there are two types of revival. The one is a supernatural, spontaneous move of God where entire cities are transformed almost instantly in a sweeping glory move of God….bring it on Lord.
 
The other type of revival is the revival where Christians discover who they are in Christ. They become bold, confidant, spirit filled.  Christians who understand their authority, and have power to heal and minister. They begin to live in the freedom of the new covenant. They enjoy God and let God enjoy them. They live in grace. They effect every situation they're in (without striving). Every environment they enter is effected and infected positively by them. If you get a bunch of people like this. Dare I say A church, a community of people like this…you'll have revival.
 
This is my prayer for this community, and for the communities we effect. I'm trusting God for revival on the East Coast of South Africa. A fire that will sweep churches and communities. Where every believer in each community becomes empowered, and catches the fire of Gods Spirit. Where every person is transformed and empowered by the Spirit of God, to do God will.
 
Check this quote from Bill Johnson.
 
"You've gotta hear the heart of God in this folks. It's the passion of the almighty God, it's to find people and fill your being with His presence. It's called being filled with the Spirit of God Himself. Filled, saturated, overflowing, every molecule, every fiber of my being, every thought, every ambition, every part of me dripping with God Himself. Coz I've taken advantage of the opportunity that all the prophets of old never had access to I've taken advantage of the fact that when I was born again, I was put at the entrance to the kingdom, I didn't just camp at the entrance and say, "I made it" but I started to emerge, I started to break forth into the things of God, says God, I've gotta have more, I've gotta have you fill me, I've gotta have you demonstrate your life in me, and through me like you did your son Jesus. I know that's the pattern, I know that's the realm, the signs and wonders he walked in, is the call for me. I'm not satisfied to sit here. I've gotta get filled up. I've gotta get filled up."
 
This demonstrates a passion for the Spirit in and through us.
 
A passion to be filled, and the need to be filled if we are to consistently operate in power.
 
This point is important. It's not that we would have to "work at" or strive for this ministry of the Spirit in and through us. That type of pressure to perform will lead to a works driven mentality, rather it's that it would naturally be an extension of who we are in Christ. It's not that we "have to" do this. It's that were totally excited coz we "CAN" do it. Were allowed, were empowered. Were right with God thorough the finished work of the cross, and we "CAN" do incredible things with Him. We don't have to, we want to. Who would not want to operate in anointing and power, if they could? We all want to. It's not a question of "want"..it's a question of…we CAN!!
 
"Naturally supernatural and supernaturally natural."
 
This is a simple message. Lord we want more of you. IN us and through us. The ministry of the Holy Spirit is superior to the ministry of man. May we be those full of the spirit. Operating from the overflow of knowing, and being known by God.  Dripping with anointing from God. Full of power, full of grace. Living in the spirit and infecting and effecting our every environment. Come friends lets invite the Holy Spirit…Lord we want more of you!!!

Saturday, 02 August 2008

Good advice

Hi All
 
I have just listened to a teaching by Rob called
"Attitudes that attract the empowering grace of God Part 1" at
 
Please download and feel refreshed.
 
Love
Gregg