To See the Invisible Hope #5

Monday, November 7, 2016

“For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that which we see not, then do we with patience wait for it” (Romans 8:22-25 KJV).

How do we see the hope that cannot be seen?

When today’s Scripture says, “We are saved by hope,” this certainly does not mean, “We hope we are good enough to go to heaven when we die.” No, that is not Christianity—that is vain religion masquerading as Christianity! When we come by simple faith in Jesus Christ dying to pay for our sins, His burial to put away our sins, and His resurrection to give us a right standing before God, then we are just as sure of going to heaven as if we were already there with the door locked behind us!

To be “saved by hope” is not referring to being saved into heaven, or being declared righteous before God. It means, “delivered from misery and depression.” If all “life” was was this brief time before death, existence in a sin-cursed world filled with evil and suffering, we would have every reason in the world to feel depressed beyond words. As Paul said, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable” (1 Corinthians 15:19). We would be most miserableindeed! In fact, the Corinthians, who were denying bodily resurrection, had robbed themselves of such Christian joy.

Thankfully, brethren, we are not trapped in these limited, weakening bodies forever. As we would change clothes, God will take these earthly bodies and exchange them for heavenly bodies (see 1 Corinthians 15:36-58; 2 Corinthians 4:16–5:8). We will then share in Jesus Christ’s glorification in the heavenly places forever (Romans 8:18-25). Let us take our stand by faith in these simple truths, thereby letting us “see the invisible hope,” until we see the hope we cannot see! 🙂

To See the Invisible Hope #4

Sunday, November 6, 2016

“For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that which we see not, then do we with patience wait for it” (Romans 8:22-25 KJV).

How do we see the hope that cannot be seen?

“While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18). This is certainly an unusual exhortation—“look not at the things which are seen, but [look] at the things which are not seen.” What is one of the things we should look at today, which cannot be seen? It would be the first eight verses of chapter 5, which are an explanation of the context of today’s Scripture (Romans 8:18-25).

At the head of its great “Hall of Faith” chapter, the Bible says in Hebrews 11:1: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (And then, the writer lists dozens of names of believers from ancient Bible days.) When we hope for something, we cannot see it with the physical eyes. But, we assume it is coming. It may or may not come. However, when the Bible speaks of hope, it does not mean, “I sure hope it comes.” “Hope” in today’s Scripture, as well as in Hebrews 11:1, is a “confident waiting.” As today’s Scripture says, “we with patience wait for it.” The day of the resurrection of us Christians is coming, the Rapture is imminent, but we must not rush it.

While we cannot physically see our glorified bodies today, while they do not exist today, God’s Word plainly declares they will exist and we will indwell them. We just believe those verses, counting them as true (for they are true), and that hope delivers us from misery and depression….

Our latest Bible Q&A: “‘Epistle’ and ‘letter’—same or different?

Perishing Versus Renewing #2

Sunday, April 3, 2016

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day (2 Corinthians 4:16 KJV).

As we physically “perish,” may we spiritually “renew!”

One Christian brother always aptly states, “All ‘healing’ claims aside, the death-rate is still one a piece!” We can claim Israel’s verses all we want—Exodus 15:26, Matthew 10:8, Mark 16:17, James 5:14-15, et cetera—but we will only deceive ourselves by grabbing verses that have absolutely nothing to do with us and absolutely nothing to do with God’s current operations! No matter the modern-day “miraculous healing,” that “healed” person is still going to experience the worst disease—physical death. Beloved, there is something better than temporary physical healing in a body destined to rot anyway. It is a brand-new body in which the “renewed inward man” will reside in eternity!

Romans 8:18-25: “[18] For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. [19] For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. [20] For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, [21] Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. [22] For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. [23] And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. [24] For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? [25] But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.”

These physical bodies will pass, but a most glorious (resurrected) body will be granted us at the Rapture. Until Christ takes care of the “outward man,” may we take care of the “inward man!” Let us spend more time in God’s Word rightly divided, renewing that which will never perish! 🙂

Perishing Versus Renewing #1

Saturday, April 2, 2016

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day (2 Corinthians 4:16 KJV).

As we physically “perish,” may we spiritually “renew!”

Some people just never appear to age, huh? Their faces look pretty much the same way they did 10, 20, 30, or more, years ago. Nevertheless, looks are deceiving. They have aged, and that much closer to death. According to the Bible, their outward man is “perishing.” The truth is, no matter how much cosmetic surgery we undergo, no matter how healthy we eat, no matter how many “pills” and “creams” we buy, no matter how much we exercise, these physical bodies will eventually wind up in a cold, dark grave. We will also be truthful concerning the spiritual reality of our condition. There is more to life than these physical bodies.

Exactly why we age is a mystery to scientists. Two prevailing theories are: (1) our genes determine how long we are to live, and (2) damage/changes in our DNA accumulate over time and eventually prevent us from living. These and other explanations tell us what Romans 5:12 already said: “Wherefore, as by one man [Adam] sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.” Where we find sin, we find death. Friends, it really is that plain and simple.

The Greek word translated “perish” in today’s Scripture is found four other times in the New Testament—a moth “corrupteth” material wealth (Luke 12:33), apostate men with “corrupt” minds (1 Timothy 6:5), ships being “destroyed” in God’s judgment (Revelation 8:9), and those “destroyed” who “destroyed” the earth (Revelation 11:18). For those hanging on to this physical body as though it will last forever, they will be sorely disappointed on their deathbed!

Oh, but we who are in Jesus Christ, we Bible students, our soul and our spirit (“inward man”) are constantly being enlightened as we read God’s Holy Word (Ephesians 1:17). This “inward man” will never see a grave, never die, never corrupt or rot away. Oh, may we quickly learn to spend more time in God’s Word rightly divided, renewing that which will never perish! 🙂

Enjoy our daily devotionals? You may securely donate to us here: https://www.paypal.me/ShawnBrasseaux.

Thee and Two Gardens #1

Saturday, January 24, 2015

“Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was never man yet laid. There laid they Jesus…” (John 19:41,42a KJV).

Wilt thou choose to “live” in the Garden of Eden, or in the Garden of Calvary?

Long ago, in the Middle East, specifically the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve, our parents, died spiritually. Their spirits, once alive with God’s life, now dead, unable to function as He created them, now operating apart from His purpose. Their souls, formerly enlightened with God’s Word, now darkened, unable to function as He created them, now operating without any purpose. Their physical bodies, once able to do God’s will, now depraved, unable to live forever as He created them, working slower and eventually ceasing activity altogether. How it broke God’s heart to see mankind go the way of Satan!

Long ago, in the Middle East, near the Garden of Calvary, our Saviour died physically. His Spirit went back to Father God in heaven (Luke 23:46). His soul descended into the heart of the earth (Matthew 12:40). His physical body was removed from the cross and prepared for burial. In today’s Scripture, His broken-hearted disciples brought His lifeless body to a nearby garden tomb, a new tomb that wealthy Joseph of Arimathaea had purchased for himself. They sealed the grave with a great stone (Matthew 27:57-60). On the third day, Jesus Christ burst from that tomb in resurrection power—alive forevermore, victorious over death, sin, Satan, and hell!

Those who witnessed these events thousands of years ago, they did not realize that God, for special reasons now known to us, had them included in His Word and plan for mankind. With the completed canon of Scripture in hand, we can see what He was doing. Saints, by considering these two great events in Scripture, we can actually see the difference between flesh-living and grace-living. One lifestyle is exclusive to the Garden of Eden while the other is limited to the Garden of Calvary. It is our faith in these verses that determines what lifestyle we experience on planet Earth….

To Live is Christ, To Die is Gain

Thursday, September 5, 2013

“For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21 KJV).

In these twelve simple words, we see the Christian’s life and death….

The Christian (“Christlike”) life is the life that Jesus Christ lives in and through the Christian. Here on this earth, Christ lives His life in us Christians. Galatians 2:20 affirms: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”

Colossians 3:4 says, “When Christ, who is our life, shall appear….” The Bible also says in Colossians 1:27 “…Christ in you [Gentiles], the hope of glory….” We do not live the Christian life because we, even as Christians, cannot live the Christian life. Only Jesus Christ can live His life. When we place our faith in God’s Word to us, Romans through Philemon, the Holy Spirit will take that sound doctrine and transform our inner man (soul and spirit; 1 Thessalonians 2:13), thereby changing the outward man (the actions of the physical body).

In today’s Scripture, we also learn that for the Christian, physical death is “gain.” In 2 Corinthians 5:6-8, we read: “Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.”

While here in this physical world, we are absent from the third heaven where God our heavenly Father dwells. However, we have a responsibility—yea, a privilege—to care for our Christian brethren here on earth and tell the lost world about the salvation in Jesus Christ!

Until we reach heaven’s glory, we agree with Paul: “For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to be depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you” (Philippians 1:23,24). 🙂

For In This We Groan #4

Friday, May 31, 2013

“For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven:” (2 Corinthians 5:2 KJV).

Having been stricken with a bacterial infection of the sinuses and eyes for the past week, I can give a hearty “Amen!” to today’s Scripture!

Physical death is actually a blessing for us Christians—it severs the final link we have to this fallen creation. (Can you imagine living in these bodies forever?) Once we leave these physical bodies, we are eternally, physically isolated from sin, and we go to be with the Lord Jesus Christ forever and ever!

In the context of today’s Scripture, the Apostle Paul writes that God the Father has given us “the earnest of the Spirit.” “Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord” (verses 5b-8). By giving us Christians the indwelling Holy Ghost, God has guaranteed that He will one day rescue our physical bodies from sin (just as He has already rescued our spiritual bodies from sin).

While we moan and groan during sickness, let us remember that this body is not meant to last forever anyway, for it would be pollute heaven. Our suffering is simply a testament that the great God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ still has a mighty work to accomplish—the redemption of these mortal “vile” bodies and their transformation into immortal and perfect glorified bodies like Jesus Christ’s (Philippians 3:20,21).

Dear readers, take comfort. This limited body of flesh and blood is not our permanent abode. It is merely the vehicle that carries around our soul and our spirit in this time-space continuum we call the natural world. As today’s Scripture states, it is actually our soul that is groaning, the “real” us inside this weakly and sickly physical body. How we long for a change of clothes, some which will not turn to rags! Patiently waiting for the “wardrobe upgrade….” 🙂