December 31, 2020
I thank God that He made me a new creation when I received Jesus Christ as my personal Savior in 1971 (See Life Changing Letter).
Therefore, if any man be in Christ, he is a new creation; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
II Corinthians 5:17
I’m excited to grow to know my dear Savior and best friend every day, and to continually learn about Him through all eternity as He reveals the riches of His grace to me.
And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus; That in the ages to come, He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2:6-7
The moment I received Jesus Christ as my Savior, I was seated positionally with Christ in heaven so now I can look DOWN from my heavenly position in Him. When I’m having a rough day at work and remember this, it helps me step back and get the big picture from God’s viewpoint in heaven. Then my little corner of the world doesn’t seem so big.
The other day, I was reading in Matthew 17:1-8 about the transfiguration of Jesus when they went up into “a high mountain”. This was likely Mount Hermon, which at 9232 feet is the highest mountain in Israel. It was spectacular when I saw it in 2013.
Matthew records that after Christ was transfigured before Peter, James, and John, they saw Him talking with Moses and Elijah. Perhaps Peter, James, and John were able to identify Moses and Elijah because Christ called them by name. How amazing that they were all having sweet fellowship even though they lived here on earth in different millennia. When the Father spoke and said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye Him,” (verse 5) the three disciples were terrified and fell on their faces. Jesus tenderly touched them and said, “Arise, and be not afraid.” Then they lifted up their eyes and saw “JESUS ONLY.” Even though we will know other believers in heaven, all the focus will be on Jesus Christ, with no fear and perfect fellowship while we worship and serve Him for all eternity. How gracious of God to give us this little peek into eternity to encourage us in the here and now. My tiny finite mind certainly has trouble comprehending “forever”.
In order to grow in His grace and keep me looking unto Jesus, I wanted to share a few things that God has given me in past years and presently that have helped me. For personal Bible study tools, I have been richly blessed at this website: http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org They have a wealth of free Bible studies. The 100-page study of basic doctrines is especially helpful.
I also discovered Through the Bible (https://ttb.org/) with Dr. J. Vernon McGee who is now home with the Lord. They recorded all his sermons as he taught verse by verse through the entire Bible. I downloaded the app on my phone and tablet so I can listen to it while I’m driving or doing chores around the house. These messages have been translated into 120+ languages so they are available worldwide.
Behold Israel.org also blesses me as Amir Tsarfati, a Messianic Jew in Israel, teaches about prophecy. As things become worse and worse in this old world, God comforts me by reminding me that He is on the throne and working out His perfect plan for all eternity. As believers in Christ, we must keep our eyes on Him and keep redeeming the time. Perhaps today He will catch us up to be with Him for all eternity!