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Daily Devotional for Friday April 18, 2014
Today We Celebrate One of the Greatest Events in History, the Death of Jesus on the Cross
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, I have recently read a daily devotional that really has disturbed me as it said it is an insult to God for Christians to ask for forgiveness. Because He died for all our sins (previous and future). So if this is true, how can Christians truly repent?
ANSWER: First, you NEVER read that here. Sadly, in the internet age, there is a plethora of people writing online with ZERO theological training. That is why it is critical to know WHO you are reading. What you read is 100% INCORRECT. In 1 John 1,written to Believers, that we ALL sin. Just because we have confessed our sins, asked forgiveness, repented (turned from our sin), we still need to confess our sins and ask for forgiveness daily...since we ALL sin and fall short of the glory of God. The wonderful thing is we have the assurance from God's Word we will be forgiven.
Today is the day that we celebrate one of the greatest events in human history, the death of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on the cross!!! Today is truly a day of rejoicing. Because of the sacrifice Jesus made, giving His very life as the one-time perfect sacrifice for the sins of all mankind, we can be forgiven of our sins and reunited with our Lord for eternity. So much of what I deal with each day in this Devotional is to help you walk through this short journey here on earth victoriously while allowing God to use your life for His glory. However, we must never forget that this journey is very short and there is an eternity waiting for us when this life is completed.
I want to focus for a few minutes on this most sacred day to that split second when our life on this earth is finished and we are launched into eternity. Do you have the assurance this very moment that when you take your last breath that you will spend eternity in Heaven?
If the answer to that question is anything but a resounding YES, then let me just share this simple truth with you. You see, our God, our Creator so loved this world, so loved His creation, that He sent His Son, His only Son to be part of this world. Jesus had one mission in this life. It wasn't to be a great teacher, though He was a great teacher. It wasn't to be a great prophet, though He was a great prophet. It wasn't to be a great miracle worker, though He did work many great miracles. No my friend, Jesus came to this world to perform only one job...to die!
You see, the reason it was vital for Jesus to be immaculately conceived and born of a virgin was so that He was not infested with the same problem you and I are born into this life with, sin. Otherwise, the best He could have done was to die for His own sins. Jesus lived on this earth for some 33 years before it was time to complete His work. That work was finished on a hill called Calvary and a cross where He hung, and then died as the perfect one-time sacrifice for the sins of this world. That is why whosoever believes in Jesus shall not perish, but is promised everlasting life!!!
Putting our faith in Jesus is the only way to be saved because it was only Jesus who died for our sins. There are no other ways to be saved, no other roads to God, there are no other plans of salvation!!! This is God's one and only plan to reconcile His fallen creation back to Himself. This is the only way that you can escape eternity apart from the God who created you in His own image. It is through His grace and by your faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8,9)!!!
There are many incredible mysteries in the Bible. There are many doctrinal issues that will never be fully understood until we reach Glory. But God made the most important decision of this life very easy and simple to understand. He gave every person on earth the very same opportunity to have their sins washed away and be assured of an eternity in Heaven. That is why we put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ and why we celebrate Good Friday today.
The most important decision you will make in this life is not who you will marry, or where you will live, or what kind of job you will have. The most important decision you will make in this life is to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior by faith. If you have not done that yet, the Bible says that TODAY is the day of salvation. I would invite you to go to, http://www.liveprayer.com/plan.cfm . Pray to ask God to open your heart, read the words, pray the prayer, and accept today God's gift to you this Easter season the gift of everlasting life through His son Jesus.
I love you and care about you deeply. For those of you who already know Christ as your Savior, I would encourage you to forward this email to someone that you know who is lost and without hope this Easter. What better gift to give someone than the opportunity to know Jesus as their Savior and God's free gift of everlasting life when this journey through life is over. I pray that you will take time today to focus on what Jesus did on that cross some 2,000 years ago. Because of His obedience our sins can be forgiven and we can have everlasting life!!!
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,