Saturday, May 24, 2014

Bought at a Price

"Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies."  (1 Corinthians 6:19-20, NIV)

When you accept Jesus into your heart and into your life, you are not your own.  You were bought at a price.  It wasn't just any price.  It was a high price---the price of Jesus' life.   (1 John 3:16)

Any believer who considers or calls themselves a Christian which means 'Little Christ' does not have the right or option to choose to dishonor Jesus Christ in any way with their body---God's temple.  That particularly means being sexually intimate and active with anyone other than the person God has chosen for you and also within a marital union which comes from the Lord.  [*Note:  More on this particular topic in a future blog posting...]

"The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body."  (1 Corinthians 6:13, NIV) 

One way to prevent the temptation of sexual immorality is to first guard your eyes and then your heart.  (Proverbs 4:23)  Solomon, a very wise man, spoke on this subject.  "Do not lust in your heart after her beauty or let her captivate you with her eyes." (Proverbs 6:25, NIV)

The Apostle Paul warns the church at Corinth, "Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ Himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.”  But whoever is united with the Lord is one with Him in spirit."  (1 Corinthians 6:15-17, NIV)

This biblical truth still applies today to the church as a whole.  This message is for the entire body of Jesus Christ.

Some people within the body of Christ may think and/or say that they have the right to do anything they want to do with their bodies.  However, if they have really made Jesus Christ the Lord of their lives, then that way of thinking is far from the truth. 

Paul talks about it in his letter to the church at Corinth.  “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything.   (1 Corinthians 6:12, NIV)

In other words, you cannot give even a small portion of yourselves over to that way of thinking.  You cannot give in even a little to temptation from the devil.  If you do, then you give the devil a foothold into you and into your life.  (Ephesians 4:27

John tells us where all of temptations come from too.  "For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world."  (1 John 2:16, NIV)

The Apostle Paul instructs believers to, "Flee from sexual immorality..."  (1 Corinthians 6:18a, NIV)  Leave that person.  Remove yourself from that situation.  Whatever you need to do in order to obey God, do it.

He goes on to say, "...All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body."  (1 Corinthians 6:18b, NIV)  That is not completely true though.  If you have accepted Jesus into your heart and into your life, you are also sinning against Him. 

"...But whoever is united with the Lord is one with Him in spirit."  (1 Corinthians 6:17, NIV)  Therefore, choose to obey and honor God with your body---His temple.  You were bought at a price---a very high price.

(*Additional Scripture References:  Proverbs 6:26-29, 32-33Proverbs 7:25-27)



Copyright 2014 by Dawn Freeman. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Honoring God With Our Bodies

Read Genesis 39:6-12

Did you notice?  Joseph was a very morally upright man.  He made righteous choices in the midst of the advances from another man's wife.  He didn't cave into temptation.  He obeyed God! 

God instructs all of His children to "Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body."  (1 Corinthians 6:18, NIV)  

Not only do you sin against your own body but you also sin against God [if you have accepted Him into your heart and life].  Depending on the situation, you sin against others as well.  For example:  If Joseph had given into the temptation; he would have sinned against Potiphar, Potiphar's wife, and God. 

However, Joseph got out of there.  He knew what was right in the situation with Potiphar's wife.  Every born-again believer knows the right thing to do in any similar situation.  They must take action though just like Joseph did in his situation. 

Read Genesis 39:13-23.

Unfortunately, Potiphar's wife wasn't as honorable as Joseph in this case.  She lied to her husband about the situation with Joseph.  She framed Joseph even though he hadn't done anything wrong.  Of course, Potiphar believed his wife's lies.  What spouse wouldn't believe their own spouse over someone else!  The result:  Potiphar took Joseph and put him prison. 

Look at v 21.  Though, Joseph was initially mistreated and betrayed by Potiphar's wife and Potiphar himself..."the Lord was with him; He showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden." (Genesis 39:21, NIV) 

Now, look back at Genesis 39:20-23

Isn't that awesome?!?!  It not only shows God's unconditional love, kindness, and goodness to Joseph but even when everything was going in the wrong direction for him---God still took care of him.  Joseph was obedient to God.  He made wise choices in the midst of a terrible circumstance.  God looked out for him though. 

God is faithful!  And, Joseph honored God by being obedient and making right choices.  Therefore, Joseph ultimately honored God in everything that he said and did with his body.  (Colossians 3:17)  As Children of God, let's also choose to honor God with our bodies in every way. 

[This story is only one prime example from God's word about His provision and blessings for our obedience.]


Copyright 2014 by Dawn Freeman. All rights reserved.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

"It Is Written..."

(Read Matthew 4:1-11)

It's interesting that when Jesus was in the wilderness being tested by the devil for 40 days and 40 nights---He used only three words before everything He said to the devil.  He didn't say anything other than what He heard His Father say too. 

Those three little words are also powerful.  "It is written..."  Think about it for a moment.  "It is written..." 

Every instance where Jesus was tempted by the devil---"It is written..." 

When the devil first tempted Jesus in the wilderness, it was concerning His power and authority.  He knew where it came from---from His Father's spoken words. 

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’  (Matthew 4:4, NIV)  It points to Jesus knowing only to speak what His Father spoke---nothing more, nothing less. 

The next temptation from the devil was regarding Jesus' identity.  “If you are the Son of God,” he [tempter] said, “throw yourself down...”  (Matthew 4:6a, NIV)

Jesus knew His identity, but He also knew not to test His Father.  Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ”  (Matthew 4:7, NIV) 

The last temptation in the wilderness was concerning worldly power and wealth.  “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”  (Matthew 4:9, NIV) 

Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’ ”  (Matthew 4:10, NIV)  

Only after Jesus had used His Father's words after every temptation from the devil was He able to overcome each temptation.  He had to be rooted and grounded not only in His identity but also in His relationship with His Father and in His Father's word.  He knew who He was.  He knew whose He was.  He knew God's word. 

It's a great lesson for all of us believers to be steadfastly committed to learning and growing in God's word and in our own personal relationships with God / Jesus.  We need to not only know our identity in Jesus Christ but to know God's word in order to overcome all of the temptations, tests, and trials that the devil tries to use against us in our lives.  Only then will we be the true Godly people He has created and called us to be for His purpose and plan.  (Jeremiah 29:11



Copyright 2014 by Dawn Freeman. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Magnitude of the Cross

[Please just watch the first 4 minutes of this video for the purpose of this lesson. *Note: This is a graphic portrayal of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ from the movie, The Passion of the Christ. Therefore, please be aware that it may be too graphic for anyone under the age of 21 to view this video.]
 


This portrayal from the movie, The Passion of the Christ, was only a portion of what our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ endured for us as believers.  And, it still doesn't fully depict all that He went through upon the Cross of us.  However, hopefully, you will gain some insight and better understanding of His suffering for us through this depiction.

Now, some people within the body of Christ do not understand the magnitude of the Cross.  I am not saying that I, or anyone, can fully understand it.  The more we better understand it though, the more it will cause all of us to live a holy life just like Jesus.  He lived a holy and sinless life, and He lives within every believer today.  Therefore, it is possible with the help of the Holy Spirit. 

Unfortunately, there's some people in the church as a whole that think since Jesus already died on the Cross for them----it gives them a so-called license to sin.  That is not true.  That is not the case.  I am here to tell you, "No!  Stop it!  Stop sinning against God, others, and yourself!"

It is unacceptable for believers in Jesus Christ to look and act like the rest of the world.  We are called to be set apart from the world.  We are in this world but not of this world.

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind..."  (Romans 12:2a, NIV) 

When all believers get a better grasp of the Cross, people will live a more holy life like Jesus Christ Himself.  He took on all of our sin on Himself.  He bore it once and for all.  (Hebrews 7:27)  Therefore, we are forgiven of all sin.  

That doesn't mean to be flippant (meaning: disrespectful, shallow) about it though. It doesn't give us permission to sin.  It means we should want to live more for Him---honor Him, resemble Him---be holy.  But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”  (1 Peter 1:15, NIV)

What does the word 'holy' mean?  According to Dictionary.com, it is defined as "saintly; godly; pious; devout" and "having a spiritually pure quality".  It means that we conduct ourselves in a Godly way.  We don't knowingly and willfully sin against God and/or others.  We yield to and follow the Spirit of God.  (Romans 8:14; Galatians 5:18)  We obey God's word---His truth.  We walk in that truth.  We live it out in this world.  (1 John 4:17

That's what it means to live a holy life before God and others. 


Copyright 2014 by Dawn Freeman. All rights reserved.