Saturday, August 31, 2013


The Holy Scriptures inform us that we are to live this life in light of eternity. We are to lay hold on eternal life. We are to acquire an eternal perspective. We are to enter into the reality of the kingdom of God NOW.

Titus 2:11-14 > This passage is rich in this doctrine of living this life in light of eternal realities!!! > Verse 12 says, "in this present world" we are to live in a very particular way that reflects the salvation we have received - On the side of negation, we are to "deny"(reminds us of Jesus teaching - Matthew 16:24-27) ungodliness and worldly desires - On the positive we are to live "soberly(seriously), righteously, and godly. > And where is our focus, our attention, our eyes as we live in this present world??? Answer, "looking for that blessed hope(the future promises) that will be revealed at the "glorious appearing of Jesus Christ, our great God and Savior!!! > 1 Timothy 4:8 > Bodily exercise profits you only in temporal ways, for a little while, BUT, godliness(spiritual exercise, spiritual disciplines) benefit us in this life AND in the life to come.

Ephesians 2:1-10 > Verse 7 is the hinge of this passage - The fact that we have been made alive with Christ(verse 1-6) we are to live a life of good works inspired by God's saving grace(verse 8-10) and this life we live in the here and now is inspired by the reality of the ages to come(verse 7) in which we will be shown the exceeding riches of his grace!!! > Ephesians 3:8-21 > We are "in Christ Jesus" and in Christ Jesus God has an "eternal purpose". Your life has purpose. An eternal purpose. Never think, for even a moment, that you have no purpose.(verse 11) - We are the church throughout all ages(verse 21).

2 Timothy 2:1-10 > The contrast is found in verse 4 with verse 10 - in verse 4 we are told of the trait of a good soldier, that "he does not entangle himself in the affairs of THIS LIFE" - This reminds us of Jesus teaching on the "Sower sows the word - Mark 4:14-20 - in verse 10 "the affairs of this life" are contrasted with "That we may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with ETERNAL GLORY"!!! Passages that reveal this glory which is yours in Christ Jesus - Colossians 1:27; Colossians 3:1-4; 1 Corinthians 2:7-10: Ephesians 5:27; Philippians 3:20,21.

2 Corinthians 5:8-10 > "We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ" - Romans 14:10-13 > Again, "we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ...every one of us will give account of himself to God" - 1 Corinthians 3:9-15 > Each one us will be tried by fire, our God is a consuming fire(Hebrews 12:29), our works, which have been rewarded with gold, silver, or precious stones for good works, and wood, hay, and straw for evil works, all these attached to you will be tried by fire, God's Holy presence. The wood, hay, straw will be consumed, but not before you give an account of them. The gold, silver, precious stones will enter into the Kingdom of God with you(2 Peter 1:10,11). Some, it is written, will enter in empty-handed, but at least will be saved. 

Matthew 5:3-12 > great is your reward in heaven for those who are persecuted for living righteously(Practicing verses 3-11) > Luke 14:13,14 - You will be recompensed at the resurrection of the just for your care of the poor > He that wins souls is wise(Proverbs 11:30) - Daniel 12:2,3 > those who turn many to righteousness will shine as the stars in the heavens > 1 Corinthians 15:41,42 - We will all shine differently in the resurrection like the stars of the heavens - what determines how bright you shine is how many you have turned to God - the brightness is reflected partly by the crowns we receive which have have in them gemstones corresponding to your labors in this life > 1 Thessalonians 2:19(crown of rejoicing); Philippians 4:1(St Paul called the Phillipian believers "my joy, and my crown); 2 Timothy 4:6-8(a crown of righteousness) > And NOTE what Jesus said - Revelation 22:12 -"Behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be."

1 Timothy 6:3-19 > Verses 12 and 19 tell us "to lay hold of eternal life" - This entire passage is about a fight that we believers are embroiled in as long as we are in this world - this battle is between God and mammon, and this battle takes place in us daily - it is the battle to love God over money(possessions, things of this world, material riches) - Remember Jesus's teaching on the "Sermon on the Mount" - Matthew 6:24 - Jesus says you CANNOT serve God AND mammon!!! - "for either you will hate the one, and love the other; or else you will hold to the one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon." > Note the contrast(verse 17-19) between "in this life" and "the time to come". > Luke 12:13-21 - here is more of Jesus's teaching on the subject of eternal values - In 1 Timothy 6:3-10 note that we are to compare and contrast what all teachers teach about money, riches, covetousness, gain with what Jesus taught us as recorded in the Gospels. > Hebrews 10:31-39 - "you have in heaven a better and enduring substance" > Hebrews 11:8-16; 13:14 > We seek a city, we desire a better country, that is an heavenly; God has prepared for us a city!!! - We confess that we are "strangers and pilgrims on the earth"(Hebrews 11:13).

Friday, August 23, 2013


The Gospel is defined as "Good News", But the "Gospel" is more than just good news in general, like "the weather is going to be perfect for the wedding"; that's good news. The Gospel is the announcement (Evangel) that the runner brings to the city from the battlefield that the "victory has been won". Christ Jesus has defeated death, He "has abolished death, and has brought life and

immortality to light through the gospel"(2 Timothy 1:10); Jesus took on human flesh "that He through death might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the devil"(Hebrews 2:9-15); "...for this purpose was the Son of God manifested (born in the flesh), that he might destroy(set us free) from the works of the devil(1 John 3:8); God the Father "has delivered us from the power of darkness and translated us into the kingdom of the Son of his love"(Colossians 1:12-14); when Jesus arose "he made you alive with Him, having forgiven you all your trespasses; blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us(the law has been fulfilled and thus transcended), which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross, and having spoiled(disarmed) principalities and powers(evil spirits), he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them himself"(Colossians 2:13-15); "Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us, for it is written, cursed is every man that hangs on a tree"(Galatians 3:13); "There is therefore NOW no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus...for the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set us free from the law of sin and death"(Romans 8:1,2); "And this is the VICTORY that overcomes the world, even our faith"(1 John 5:4); "You are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world"(1 John 4:4); "You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar(purchased) people; that you should show forth the the praises(virtues - excellencies - divine energies) of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvellous light"(1 Peter 2:9).

St Paul gives us the inspired Word of God on the Gospel in the fifteenth chapter of First Corinthians; Verses 1-4 define the Gospel; read on and you will have revealed to you Christ's victory over death is our victory over death; if Christ is not risen(bodily) than our faith is in vain(verse 17); At Christ's second coming the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death(verse 26) when we all experience the resurrection of our bodies(verses 41-58). This is the Good News, this is the Gospel!!!

Historical Note: In the generations approaching Christ's coming in the flesh(the incarnation), the world, the entire world, had a "collective consciousness", a "sense", a "premonition" that the Savior of the world was about to be "born of the seed of the woman"(Genesis 3:15). This is known as "THE EXPECTATION OF THE NATIONS". "No nation ever forgot the promise of salvation. No matter how corrupt it became, and no matter how much it neglected the true God, it guarded this promise as a moral heritage, as an achor of hope throughout all the centuries, as a protest against the tyranny of the devil, and against the kingdom of evil. Jews, Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Chinese, Persians, Indians, Arabs, and even the inhabitants of the New World, all awaited the arrival of a Redeemer God coming in human form Who would teach the whole truth in order to obliterate evil, bring peace, make brothers of the nations, and bring the Kingdom of Heaven to the earth".** From the dawn of time, or if you like, darkening of time at Adam and Eve's fall, mankind has been aware of the promise of God to redeem mankind from its' fall through the virgin birth of the Son of God. This promise was passed on by all the various peoples of the world through myths and legends, through oral traditions, and in particular, starting with Abraham(1900 B.C.), through the law and prophets of Israel. And as the "fulness of time"(Galatians 4:4-7) approached, people sensed "the time was near". Caesar Augustus(reigned from 27 B.C. to 14 A.D.) called himself the
"Evangelion" - he claimed to be the good news, the savior, the manifestation of Zeus. The Kings of the earth were aware of this promised Messiah and the "Wise Men" of the Fareast knew through their astronomical studies that a King was to be born!!! King Herod reacted to the news by slaying all the male children two years old and younger. Then, about 30 years later, the way of the Lord was prepared by a specially anointed prophet, John the Baptist, who was a well-known holy man, who came out of the caves in the desert to announce the arrival of the Savior of the world.

**Christology p. 25; Saint Nektarios the Wonderworker, (1900).

Monday, August 19, 2013


John 8:12 > Jesus is the Light of the World!!! > This Light is the uncreated Light, just like Jesus Himself was/is uncreated > Jesus says you too can have this light in you IF you follow Him > The "how" of this is given to us in His "Sermon on the
Mount" (Matthew 5:1-16) > Jesus says "you are the Light of the world "as" you live according to his words, what we call the "Beatitudes" > As you "keep his sayings" (Matthew 7:24-27) you will no longer walk in darkness but acquire this "Light" > His sayings begin with His challenge to "be poor in spirit" - "to mourn" - "to be meek" - "to thirst and hunger for righteousness" - "to be merciful" - "to be pure in heart" - "to be a peacemaker" - "to suffer persecution" > Note that the "Light" is of the "Life" > Examine
1 John 1:1-5 - We enter into fellowship/communion with God through the incarnate Son and Word of God Jesus Christ - "God is Light and in Him is no darkness at all" > Our goal as followers of Jesus is to eradicate the darkness in us and acquire the Light of Life freely given to us if and when we keep his sayings.

Ephesians 5:8-14 > Christ will give you light (verse 14) as you produce the fruit of goodness, righteousness, and truth, and have no fellowship with darkness; and "wake up", quit sleeping, rise from among the dead!!! (verses 8-14) > As your Light shines brighter and brighter through your good works (reflect back on (Matthew 5:14-16) you will expose darkness, meaning the light will be turned on among those around you and those people will be able to see where they are in relation to God > You will influence people to believe in Jesus Christ and follow Him, along with you, simply by being a light shining with God's Life > Your life, your good deeds, will be a witness even without words at times > TWO ancient sayings about winning souls - "Acquire the Peace of God and a 1000 around you will be saved", and "Everywhere I go I preach the Gospel, and if I have to I even use words". > The unsaved who are lost in darkness are given light by two means, our works and our words >

2 Corinthians 4:1-6 > Note that the unbeliever is "blinded" by the devil, unless the glorious LIGHT of the GOSPEL shines unto them > It is the light, our light which is Christ's light in us, that removes the blinders and enables them to see "reality", to see where they are, to see their condition before God; We are the ones who open their eyes to truth/reality and the unbeliever than must choose what they will do with this knowledge of Christ > The world is in darkness and needs many lights to lighten the way > Just as Christ was the Light that entered the world (John 1:4-9) - "The people who sat in darkness have seen a great Light" (Matthew 4:14-16) > We must hold forth the "Word of Life".

Philippians 2:15,16 > What determines how bright you shine as lights in this world? In proportion to your obedience as you work out your salvation, holding fast (holding forth KJV) the word of life.

John 3:16-18,36
John 4:13,14
John 5:24-29
John 6:30-68
John 11:17-46
John 14:1-6
John 20:30,31

Acts 26:13-18 > Paul was called "to open their eyes, in order to turn them(the lost) from darkness to light" > It is for all believers to become "lights" set on a hill and not under a bushel (Matthew 5:14-16) > Set your heart on becoming awake, becoming a shining light, a glorious light, "for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you". (1 Timothy 4:16)