Have you received Jesus as your Lord and Savior?
Romans 5:8: But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Christians often refer to their relationship with Jesus Christ as a personal one. We say, "Jesus is my Lord and Savior", "I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ" or " I have received Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior." We encourage people to receive or "accept" the Lord Jesus as "their personal Savior."
Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Jesus makes a personal invitation to everyone to accept Him as Lord. If you read Revelation 3, you will find that Jesus made that personal offer after He judged the Christian churches as being corrupt.
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name. John 1:12
The cults ridicule us for saying this and question "how can a man have a "personal" relationship with God"? Others who have not experienced being born again are greatly puzzled by the concept of having a close and personal relationship with our Creator.
There is only one kind of relationship with the Lord and that is a personal one. Whether you are living for the Lord every day or backslidden in sin, the relationship does not change. Once it is established, it is personal. God personally has His Hand on your life.
The Personal Relationship with Jesus Christ begins One Way and One Way Only.
Let us read the context of Hebrew 2:5-13:
For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man that thou visitest him? Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me.
The message God gives through these verses is wonderful indeed. "Both He that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren."
The word "brethren" is the word "a-del-phos" and means a brother or near kinsman. It means children in the same family. It denotes a likeness in being one together.
1 Peter 2:17, uses an extension of the word "Ale-phos-tes" where it is written: "Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king".
1 Peter 3:8: Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:
1 Peter 1:22: Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
This scripture describes the love as "unfeigned" love, which means love that is not pretended, but genuine.
These verses give us insight into the special relationship we have in Christ and with those of Christ's family. This is certainly a personal relationship.
The child of God is born into the family of God by the grace of God through the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The believer's relationship is born in the love and mercy of our gracious God. God knew that man would sin and rebel against Him, yet He loved His creation and made a plan whereby a rebellious and sinful man could come into a perfect relationship with our Holy and Pure God.
That plan had to deal with man's sin. Sin demanded a penalty.
We have no way to pay any of the debt we owe God - not even a penny. Yet, the debt had to be paid, and so Christ Jesus, God's only begotten Son, God incarnate in flesh - went to the Cross and there He paid for our sins. He paid the debt we could not pay and thus His forgiveness is verified in His sacrifice and payment.
Our relationship begins when we admit that we have sinned against God.
James 2:10 states: "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. "
How much does God say we are guilty of? That's right - all of it.
God is saying: He will accept you as His son, as His child if you will accept Him as your Savior. If you will admit that you have sinned against Him, which you surely have done, and ask for forgiveness, He will forgive you. You can not pay the debt you owe Him or do anything that could ever make it right, but God paid the debt - free and totally on the cross of Calvary.
Folks, this is not accepting some concept or new philosophy of life. This is personal! You must go personally to God and talk to Him heart to heart, repent, ask for forgiveness of sin and be born again. There is no alternative to Jesus Christ. It is choose Christ, be born again or choose Hell.
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. John 3:3
One of the marks of false religion and false churches is that they make God impersonal.
Some make God to be a wrathful, ugly and selfish being, ready at a moment to smash you like a bug if you do wrong. They make God unapproachable, they take away His mercy, compassion and love. They have no concept of the God of Grace and Mercy. Their false god is one that they must by doing some ritual or moral act appease to keep from being destroyed.
The God of the King James Bible, is a righteous and just God, and His wrath will fall on all who reject His mercy, but He actively seeks to save men from their sin. He sacrificed Himself for our sins that we might become holy and pure even as He is pure.
Jesus said: “I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” Luke 13:3-5
It does not matter if you know His name, and know everything about the King James Bible, go around telling everyone you know about Him, or acting like you talk to Him. This does not establish a relationship with Jesus until you admit your sin and honestly repent begging God to forgive you.
You must accept the sacrifice that God made for you. You cannot offer anything to God to atone for your sin. It is rebellion and false pride to think that you can be good enough or offer any act or work to save you. To do so is sin. You have no regard or appreciation for the Lord's suffering. To reject His sacrifice is worse than spitting in His face.
The Relationship Begins with the New Birth.
2 Cor. 5:17-18: "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;”
Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3:3: " Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
The new birth is the beginning of the relationship with God. It makes all things new.
We receive the new nature of God, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Eph 2:19 says "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;"
Eph 3:15 explains, "Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,"
Read Romans 8:12-17.
Note verse 17, "And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.”
God tells us in Rom. 9:26, "And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people; there shall they be called the children of the living God."
Let me ask you a question:
Does the Bible teach those who by faith received Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, repent of their sins and turn to Him, have a personal relationship with God?
The answer is a resounding YES. Thank God the answer is Yes. We are the sons and daughters of God who saved us.
Note what God says about this relationship and what it means.
Eph 3:6 "That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel"
Titus 3:7 "That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life."
James 2:5 "Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?"
1 Peter 1:1-5 states:
“Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. John 16:13
Before anyone can obtain a saving and sanctifying knowledge of God, he must make a personal, supernatural, inward discovery of Himself to the soul. As none but God can change night into day, so He alone can bring a sinner out of darkness into His own marvelous light.
The One by whom the elect are taught is the Holy Spirit, and therefore is He rightly called, "The Spirit of wisdom and revelation" (Eph. 1:17). Not because He reveals to the soul anything which is not found in the Word itself. But first, because it was by His own wisdom and revelation that the penmen of Scripture were enabled to write what they did; and second because it is by His operations that what they wrote is now made effectual unto their souls.
He begins by regenerating them - imparting to them a principle of spiritual life, without which they are incapacitated to see the things of God (John 3:3).
Then He makes to their renewed mind a real and spiritual application of the same, so that they are realized in the heart, and are found to be Divine realities.
By the work of the Holy Spirit, the soul obtains an actual experience of the things contained in the Scriptures, thereby receiving fulfillment of that promise, "I will put My Law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts" (Jer. 31:33).
Following His resurrection from the dead, Jesus appeared to many people, commissioned His followers, and then returned to Heaven. But remember...even though He is in Heaven He is still omnipresent...His presence is everywhere.
Often God will have you reach out to others who are lost in sin, have not received Jesus Christ as their Saviour and are not filled with the Holy Spirit.
The more we reach out to the unsaved, the more the Holy Spirit convicts them of their sin. The more they are convicted of sin, the more vicious, angry and frustrated they become towards the person reaching out to them. They lash out, project, blame, are offended, are self righteous, become frustrated and angry. They become tired as like Jacob, they are wrestling with God. Genesis 32:22-32
Often they are resisting and rebelling against God and vexing the Holy Spirit. They want to control their own life, on their own terms, they are not surrendered to Jesus Christ and have not experienced being born again through the spiritual re-birth.
When you encounter these types of people, I encourage you to continue to reach out to them with the love of God. If they have distanced themselves from you - pray for them.
One day, when they finally cross over and walk in the Spirit, possibly - they will be thankful that someone cared enough to reach out as lead by Spirit of God, cared enough to pray for their salvation, their spiritual re-birth - for them to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, for them to be filled with the Holy Spirit and loved them enough to pray for them to live in the Kingdom of God for Eternity.
But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; Matthew 5:44
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