The last couple of days I have been encouraging you to actually live with, and enjoy, our Lord as He is TODAY! Not as He was over 2000 years ago. He is not walking the sands of The Sea of Galilee, any more. He is resurrected, and living today both beside His Father and in our hearts. No, we don’t have to fully understand how that can be, we simply believe it and walk it the joy of it!
I believe that one of our biggest problems is that we have become too centered in concepts instead of in life! Most of us are pretty tuned into which doctrines we subscribe to, which theological system we belong to, and which principles we hold on to.
A few weeks ago, I exchange some online messages with a brother who actually lived within a few miles of me. The very fist question he asked me was, “What are your doctrines?” I had no idea what he meant, so I responded, “Well, I believe that Jesus is Lord and that everyone who desires to follow Him is my brother or sister, and I can fellowship with them.”
Well, that wasn’t good enough. As we shared back and forth, my answers were not adequate in his mind and I was “obviously lost and confused and going to Hell because I do not know the Truth.” Well!
Can I suggest, that is not how we should be. Even if I was lost, confused, and did not know the Truth, isn’t that more of a reason to spend time with me? Shouldn’t we be about sharing the Life of Christ with those we meet? Look, if you come up to me and say, “Brother Nickolas, would you give me a lesson on joy?”
I would quickly say, “Well, certainly! I would be honored to.”
So I take out my concordance or go online and search for every verse with the word, “Joy.” I put all of them together and pick out the ones I think will make the point I need to share. and leave the others for another message. Maybe something I could send to you!
I share the Hebrew meanings behind the words, and the Greek meaning. I tell you what Spurgeon said and what Tozer wrote. Man! It would be great! I put all of them together to wow you! So, after they are together and share them with you.
You are so moved and impressed with what I had to say, you forward it on to others to read. They get the word and are blessed and excited . . . but you know, none of the people have any joy, they just understand the concept of joy. They gather the notes and stick them into their Bibles and go on their way. Unchanged. You know, at the end of the day, do you want to be able to understand the concept of joy, or do you want to experience the joy?
Do you realize that when we reach Heaven, we won’t have to take a written test before we enter:
Question 1: Will the rapture come before the Tribulation or
Question 2: Did you speak in tongues?
Question 3: Were you baptized or not?
Question 4: If you answered yes, to question 3, how was it done?
My goodness, friends. Our Lord will simply check your heart and if He hears it beating, He will open the gates for you!
Please understand, I am not against theology. I love to study the writings of believers from ages past and try to incorporate their experiences into my own life. But if you have no life, you are lost! You can have all of the correct doctrines and be an expert in the Scriptures, but if your (spiritual) heart is not beating, you may as well go fishing or play a few rounds of golf, because you have missed the greatest aspect of our faith.
First John tells us that, “The person who has the Son has this life.” Not “Who has the correct doctrines has life”! Those who have life are the ones who have the correct Person! Ooh baby! Once we finally walk in recognition of that fact, we start to grow spiritually. As we grow spiritually, we become more like Him. His life within us shows us the way to live! As Paul wrote, “We are changed from glory-to-glory!”
Oh really? Oh yes! If the joy you possess leaves the moment struggles come, you are missing the Life he is offering you. If you can love today more than you loved yesterday, it means you are growing! That is great! You may not know more doctrine, but you are certainly enjoying more of His Life!
Friends, don’t keep praying and fasting to be more like Jesus. Just center your life in Him, and you will grow to be more like Him every day! This is why John wrote:
“This is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is found in his Son. The person who has the Son has this life . . .” [Oh that is wonderful John, but why did you write all of this?] “I’ve written this to those who believe in the Son of God so that they will know that they have eternal life!”
Oh friends, please begin to discover this life!
(I send out messages like this each morning in emails, and if you are interested in receiving them, send me your email address and I will add you to the list: Mail List)
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It is your faithful and continued support that makes these messages possible.