Friday, April 2, 2010
Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
We have all sinned, which means falling short of being a perfect person. "Nobody's perfect" is certainly true for all of us.
Once we see this idea that we have all sinned, then we need to answer the question "So what?"
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The wages or results of sin are death. Now, we are all here to talk about sinning, and are not dead, so the death can't mean physical death. This death is a separation from God that is only fully realized once a person dies physically. Separation from God at the point of physical death means that a person is in hell. The death from sin on this side of the grave is experienced by not being able to be close to God, which typically shows itself with a sense of emptiness, feeling like there is much more to life etc. This is not a perfect science on describing spiritual death, but it is certainly real. The contrast in this verse to death is very strong, that there is a free gift of eternal life in Christ Jesus. More on this later....
John 3:16 helps us understand more about this free gift of salvation that saves us from the spiritual death that comes from sin. "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
The key word in the verse is "believe." Believing is not the same as knowing. We can know that it is a good thing to eat right and exercise. It is only when we act on this information that we can say we believe the information. More on this idea to come....
2 Cor 5:21 helps to explain more how Jesus was our sacrifice to God for our sin, and that we can be righteous.
"He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him."
All of God's wrath toward sin was expressed to Jesus when he suffered on the cross.
Now that we have a more clear picture of what "good" means with Good Friday, there is one more step that is needed. We can agree with the concept in our heads that we have sinned, and we can agree that there is a spiritual death, or separation with God. We can appreciate all the sacrifice that Jesus provided, and yet if don't take this last step, it becomes of no value to us personally. It is like someone else's mail. This last step of believing, and expressing this belief verbally to God is the point when we make it real for us. The truth is there for us to believe, and now we must take action to make it truth that we are believing.
If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved
If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord.... you will be saved - This is very important!!
God hears our prayers. You can pray this: "God, thank you for dying on the cross. I have sinned and am separated from you right now. I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sins, and that I can have eternal life. Thank you for saving me." If you express this to God, He will hear you, and forgive your sins. God will also throw a huge party in heaven celebrating your forgiveness, and new life in Christ. Other Christians will also throw a party if you tell them about your new life in Christ.
Good Friday is really good, because we have a God who saw our need, came to earth, subjected Himself to mocking and suffering, died on the cross, rose from the dead, and wants everyone to experience His love and forgiveness.
Have a great Easter weekend.
Monday, March 29, 2010
One of the biggest shocks of getting back (typing faster now that
melon had his fix - for now) is driving. This picture would only be
possible in a video game in Kenya. In the city, traffic is slowed
due almost constant traffic jams and zillions of speed bumps. These
bumps are huge. They look like coffins lined up across the road.
The only choice is to slow down to less that 5 km/hr (that is near
zero) and go kerchunk up and down over that poor coffin. When
traffic is congested, vehicles get with the thickness of paint to
each other (approximately 2 mm) and do their imitation of a cow in
a herd, trying to push their way into the desired lane of travel.
This normally happens in an ingenious traffic intersection called
"round-abouts" The concept of the round-about is to avoid those
nasty right angles of those narrow minded intersections, and have a
small circle that everyone merges into and merges out of at the
desired road. The problem is that there aren't any defined lanes.
The herding cows within paint thickness distances are inching along
without any order or submission to a lane of traffic. At this
point, you begin to be concerned about the condition of your
breath, as the norm of open windows puts you within closer
proximity to the next vehicle than you normally experience in a sit
down restaurant. Road rage has the potential of turning into an arm
wrestling match. Eventually, the ingenious driver always delivered
us to the desired location, all without a single street sign. Now
that we are back, it is mind boggling to zoom along at speeds
unknown in most of Africa.Tom Butz
home? This wild cat just loves to jump on my lap and look
longingly at me pleading to be scratched. That snobby leopard in the
safari didn't look at us once when we were the only other being
within miles. Well for now, this is my cat and I am sticking to it.
By the way, this entire posting has been typed with my left hand as
my right was occupied with,you guessed it, the cat (melon is the
name). If I don't pay attention to melon, it could get ugly. Kind
of the opposite of the leopard at the safari.
Friday, March 26, 2010
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
afraid to come out the closet. The deep panging in my lower cranium
didn't register until a few minutes ago as a need for the bean(see
pic). I had a total of one cup of coffee on the way home, and didn't
think through how to nurse my addiction in the air. I was more
concerned about getting lots of water. The pot is brewing and relief
is on the way. Hi my name is Tom, and am a beanaholic.