Wednesday 8/29 ~ The movies have warped the truth about demons

The scripture for today, August 29 (8/29), is Matthew 8:29 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

Matthew's Life of Christ-Cover-thumbnail” ‘What do you want with us, Son of God?’ they shouted. ‘Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?’ “

If you are not familiar with this passage, these are the words of a demon. If you have ever studied demons in the Bible, you will find that they never tried to spook or scare people. They never made dishes rattle or lamps fall over.

All they did was cause physical problems during the lifetime of Jesus and his apostles. There is no evidence of demons doing this in the Old Testament before Jesus, nor after his apostles died, either in the Bible or in the writings of the apostolic fathers. It is as though the demons were loosed for a season so Jesus could show his power over them also ~ Ephesians 1:20-21.

Notice, demons never said bad things. If they talked at all, it was out of fear and honesty.  James 2:19 says all demons believe in Jesus. In the book of Matthew, they knew who Jesus was. They called him the Son of God.

Jesus told them to be quiet. Why? He didn’t want evil beings telling people who he was; he wanted goodness to tell people who he was. And Jesus never did incantations or any begging to lure demons out. He demanded them to leave and immediately they obeyed him.

The movies have warped our understanding of demons. Let us search the scriptures to find out their true nature. Then we no longer have to guess. We can know.

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Saturday 8/11 ~ How do we know our spirit is in us?

The scripture for today, August 11 (8/11), is Romans 8:11 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

00-1st Century Worship KINDLE-COVER-Thumbnail“And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.”

Death literally means separation. Physical death means separation from this body on earth. Spiritual death means separation of our soul from God who is Life. Whenever we sin, our soul dies. It happened to Adam and Eve who didn’t think God meant it when he said, “In the day you eat of the fruit, you will die.” They could no longer walk and talk with God in the garden because they were now separated from him, spiritually dead. With that eventually also came physical death.

There are certain spiritual laws that cannot be broken. For example, it is impossible for God to lie. It is also impossible for God to sin. Therefore, God cannot co-exist with sin. We sin. Another law is that sin demands death. For centuries, Satan allowed mankind to kill and sacrifice an animal in their place to take their death punishment. But it was just a temporary fix.

Finally, God sent the Son — his image — in bodily form to be sacrificed in our place and take our death punishment. Now, all we have to do is be “in Jesus” which is accomplished by baptism: Galatians 3:26 says this.

What is the role of our spirit? When we die, we say our spirit has left our body. So, as long as we are alive, it means our spirit is still in us. We are not conscious of our spirit being in us; we just know it is because we are still alive.

In the same way, when we become Christians by believing, repenting, confessing and being baptized, God’s Holy Spirit enters us; Acts 2:38 says so. This is when we become spiritually alive; Romans 6:3-4 says so. We are not overtly conscious of God’s Spirit being in us, but we know it is true because our soul is now alive.

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Wednesday 7/25 ~ Would you be miserable in heaven?

The scripture for today, July 25 (7/25), is Hebrews 7:25 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-BK 7-ShadowOfDeath-Cover-new-Thumbnail“Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him [Jesus] because he always lives to intercede for them.”

Indeed, ALL of mankind is invited to come to God through Jesus. There are scriptures in the Bible about being chosen by God. But when you check the original Greek, it means you are being invited by God. A company puts out a newspaper ad inviting people to be interviewed for hiring. Then they find a qualified person. Still, the qualified person is not in the company until they company invites him and they accept the invitation. So being chosen is not a passive thing.

Then there are people who live for themselves ~ never reading God’s word, going on outings on Sunday morning, praying only in emergencies. They consider “religion” weakness.  But, as long as they don’t murder, steal big things, and only swear a little bit, God will suddenly let them into his home, heaven, when they die. If they could care less about God in this life, the would be miserable in heaven.

There are even those who do worship on Sunday morning but forget why Sunday worship is different from worship the other days of the week.  According to Acts 20:7, the early Christians met on Sunday to (for the purpose of) break bread (the Lord’s Supper). Jesus said hours before his agony to do this. But we disobey him and tell ourselves it’s okay, and spend our worship time in performing and other things.

Remember what happened on Sunday? He broke the chains of hell for us on Sunday. He broke the power of death for us on Sunday. He came back to life for us on Sunday. But football and outings are more important, and me showing off how good I can perform is more important.

Oh, Jesus, help me bury my selfishness. You gave up so much for me. Help me remember what you sacrificed for me.  Help me live for you. Help me live with you.

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Monday 7/23 ~ Have you been kidnapped and held for ransom?

The scripture for today, July 23, is 1st Corinthians 7:23 in the New Testament of the Bible.

“You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men.”

0-BK 7-ShadowOfDeath-Cover-new-ThumbnailWho were you bought from? Satan. God told Adam and Eve the day they sinned their soul would die. Satan is the source of death. When we sin, he holds us hostage.  I Timothy 2:6 says Jesus paid the ransom to free us from Satan.  “For He rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13-14).

God loved you so much, he put his words in a human body. Why? Hebrews 2:14 says, “Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil.”

Then God told the world through his Bible that, if you will believe this really happened and follow his will for you, he will consider you perfect through the blood of Jesus and eligible to enter his perfect home ~ heaven.

But it is not automatic. Romans 6 speaks a lot of who we are slaves to and how to break those chains and come under the umbrella of what Jesus did for mankind.

You were bought a great price ~ the blood of Jesus Christ. On Sundays ~ the day he came back to life and overcame that terrible soul and body death for you ~ where are you? Who do you worship?

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Friday 7/20 ~ Who paid the ransom?

The scripture for today, July 20 (7/20), is Ecclesiastes 7:20 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-BK 7-ShadowOfDeath-Cover-new-Thumbnail“There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins.”

Many people believe if we don’t murder or steal, and if we help people poorer than ourselves, and aren’t mean to our family, God will have no choice but to let us into heaven. But it only takes one sin to be a sinner

God ~ who is Perfect Goodness ~ cannot dwell with sin. Mankind has never figured out a way to be perfectly good.

God said in the Garden of Eden that the moment we sin, our soul dies. Satan holds us for ransom. I Peter 1:18-19 says, “…knowing that you were not ransomed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.”

Jesus became that perfectly good person (Hebrews 4:15) ~ that perfect Lamb of God (John 1:29). Then he paid the terrible ransom to free us from Satan. But, it does no good if we do not believe he did this. We cannot despise Jesus and say he is too demanding. Our part is the easy part.

All he asks is that we love him, thank him, worship him, follow his examples and his all commands (there aren’t many). Then Satan can no longer hold us hostage. God the Father will consider us perfect too. Then we will be accepted into heaven.

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