Throughout our Christian lives God lets you and I make choices. God does not force us to follow His laws and commands. Rather He gives us the ability to exercise free will to go our own way. He will, however, point us in the right direction, and it has been that way from the very beginning, starting with our first parents, Adam and Eve.
God set before Adam and Eve blessings or cursing, life or death and then He instructed them to CHOOSE LIFE (Genesis 2:8-9, 16-17; cf. Deuteronomy 30:15-20), but ultimately the decision was theirs to make. God has the same approach today in regards to you and me.
After eating of the forbidden fruit Adam and Eve hid from the presence of the Lord as he walked through the Garden (Genesis 3:8-10). They hid because they were afraid; they felt as though they no longer could look their creator in the eyes. They felt flawed and weak because they knew they had directly disobeyed. This is what sin produces, it produces fear, uncertainty, lack of faith, and takes away courage because ultimately our only source of courage is God. Continue reading →
It’s been asserted that Jesus broke the Sabbath, and hence we are free to disregard it as well. But did Jesus break the Sabbath? The basis for the idea that Jesus broke the Sabbath is the accusations made by Jesus’ enemies among the Pharisees and scribes. Because Jesus performed miracles of healing on the Sabbath, the Pharisees accused him of breaking the Sabbath (Matthew 12:10; Mark 3:2, John 9:14-16). John records a healing that Jesus performed at one of the festivals in Jerusalem. Because of this the Jews sought to kill him. John records that in a confrontation following the healing Jesus said to his enemies, “My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.” Then it says, “Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God” (John 5:17-18). Hence the argument is made that Jesus worked on the Sabbath and broke the Sabbath, leaving Christians free to do so. Continue reading →
One of the important questions that we must face in order to understand God’s nature, and our own nature, is, “What is the Holy Spirit?”
In answering this question let’s first ask, what is spirit? In any good dictionary you’ll find several distinct but related definitions. And it’s important to understand that in the Bible, too, you’ll find the word “spirit” used in different senses. Continue reading →
Each Spring in the Church of God we begin again the cycle of the festivals of God through which we review and hopefully gain a greater understanding of God’s great plan for mankind. The first annual feast of God is the Passover, through which we commemorate the death of Jesus Christ. This same Jesus Christ is the spiritual “Rock” who led Israel out of Egypt (1 Corinthians 10:4). He is the One who – under the divine name “Yahweh,” the Eternal or Self-existing One – spoke the ten commandments out of the cloud at Mount Sinai (Exodus 20:2; cf. Exodus 3:14; John 1:1, 18; 5:37; 8:58; Revelation 1:8). Have you ever stopped to think why God – an eternal Being who existed before time began (as we count time) – would become flesh and blood? Does that not seem a bit peculiar, when you think about it, that the very Creator, the Being whose power sustains the entire vast Universe, would be changed into a mere human, infinitely weaker and limited by comparison? Continue reading →
Surely Christians in our modern age need not be concerned with the question of eating or not eating food sacrificed to idols. Or should they? Does the New Testament really teach what some have supposed about this question? Continue reading →