The best life is a God First life

Category: Teaching (Page 1 of 2)

40 Christians on a bus

40 Christians on a tour bus for the week, a day has come and gone. How many of us will get to know the bus driver’s name? Is he married, does he have children, is he a Christian? Does he believe in Jesus? Is he In Christ?

By the end of the week, will the bus driver think of us as “good samaritans”? As 40 Christ-loving, Christ-sharing Christians concerned for his well-being, for his soul, Christians willing to vest some of our vacation time sharing the love of Christ with this stranger, or will we be just another group of people he drove around for the week?

This is a challenge for all Christians as a group or as individuals. So that we plant the seeds of truth in all that we do, will those we meet know more about Christ’s love for them after we’re gone than they did before we met them?

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.” – Mark 16:15

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. – Philippians 2:3

 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. – John 13:34

Rhetorical question: How can we claim to love others and not seek every opportunity to share the most important message of our lifetime? The saving message of Christ, the message that can bring eternal life in heaven with our creator.

Let us plant Seeds in all that we do

And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. 10 So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”

God First!

Want to Save America?

I would love to see America saved from the direction it’s currently headed. Hope is not lost if we each take action to change direction.

Scripture tells us in James 4:8: “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you…” It stands to reason that the opposite is also true; the further we are from God, the further He is from us.

We must embrace and share the Goodness and Love of God found in Scripture. We must learn to be and teach others to be as Christlike as possible. It sounds too simple to be the answer but putting God First really is The Answer!

A Country without God is a Country lost; a country with God is a Country Blessed!

God First!

Improving on Gods ways

When we worship according to God’s word, we don’t offer strange fire. In other words, we don’t try to improve on the Lord’s commands no matter how well-intended and innocent we believe our hearts and minds to be. Doing God’s will is what pleases God! Scripture is riddled with examples of this point. Jesus says, “if you love me, you will keep My commandments.” Jesus does NOT SAY: if you love me, you will attempt to improve on my commandments.

If we are truly honest with ourselves, we should realize that attempting to glorify God in any way other than what God laid out before us by command and example in New Testament scripture is really an attempt to glorify ourselves. No matter how unwittingly.

Does anyone really believe their ideas are better than God’s? To me, attempting to conform scripture to today’s culture is foolish and backward thinking. It’s also dangerous thinking that puts souls at risk.

Instead, we should be doing all we can to show our love and respect for God, By making sure we are not ourselves doing as Nadab and Abihu did in doing their own thing rather than what God asked.

STRANGE FIRE(unauthorized)

‭‭“Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it and laid incense on it and offered unauthorized fire before the Lord, which he had not commanded them. And fire came out from before the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord. Then Moses said to Aaron, “This is what the Lord has said: ‘Among those who are near me I will be sanctified, and before all the people I will be glorified.'” And Aaron held his peace.”

Leviticus‬ ‭10:1-3‬ ‭ESV

Let’s diligently work to spread God’s word according to God’s Word and help our families, culture, and society understand and want to conform to God’s ways remembering that heaven is the ultimate goal and available for all who will follow Jesus and keep His Commandments.

God First!

Blindness opened Paul’s eyes.

Paul’s eyes were Opened in Blindness on the road to Damascus, Jesus told Saul… “But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.” (‭‭Acts‬ ‭9:6‬) Saul had 3 days of blindness to think and pray about his “literal” come to Jesus meeting.

In a vision, the Lord came to a disciple in Damascus named “Ananias.” The Lord tells Ananias where to find Saul and to heal his sight. Scripture reads: “So Ananias departed and entered the house. And laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized;” (Acts 9:17-18).

Note: Baptism was the very first thing Saul did after meeting Ananias and having his sight restored. Why? Had Saul/Paul’s sins were forgiven before this moment, he would not need to be baptized to have His sins forgiven or, to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, would he?

Acts 2:38 tells us when we receive forgiveness and the gift of the Holy Spirit, “And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

In 1 Peter 3:21 it reads: “Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,

Jesus’s own words are very straightforward in Mark 16:16,

“Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”

Mark 16:16

Paul shares his story in – Acts 22:1-16

Why do I believe all of God’s word? Because not believing would be to call God a liar, and I know God cannot lie. How many scriptures need to state something before it is true? God breathed out all scripture, so only one. (2 Timothy 3:16) This said, it is important not to take any single scripture out of context as God’s Word encompasses all of Scripture; if scriptures seem to contradict, we can know we have the wrong understanding of those scriptures and need to seek what fits the whole. There are a lot of teachings in this world about what God wants, a lot of feelings about what God wants, yet it rests upon each of us to decern what God’s Word actually teaches. Don’t believe me, believe God!

“Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.

Philippians 2:9-13

God First!

Learning how to please God

To become proficient in our professions, we study and practice to be Doctors, Nurses, Accountants, Engineers, Firefighters, Carpenters, bricklayers, etc. Learning and skill are not developed by osmosis. To do our profession to the best of our ability, one must be studious and committed to learning every aspect possible about our endeavor. Shouldn’t we put even more effort into getting to know God and keeping his commandments? The less we know of God’s Word and the message of Christ, the less we know of God; Yet, our soul’s eternity depends on our submitting to God’s will in accordance with God’s will, not ours. How can we do what we do not know? we should be making ongoing efforts to grow in our understanding.

Still today, many in our world are deprived of access to Bibles and would love to have scripture to study, yet in our country (America), most homes have more than one. So for us, there is really no excuse for choosing ignorance when God’s Word is so readily available. Understanding comes through study, and there is no better time to begin study than right now. Why not grab your closest bible or download a bible app and read it daily starting now?

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15)

God First!

It is what it is, but it will be what we make of it!

This statement applies to many things, but today I think of social media. Platforms like Facebook turn so many people off because many abuse freedom of speech with disrespectful, attention-grabbing rants, gossip, foul language, crude or distasteful images, etc.; I’ve heard many refer to social media as “the devil’s workshop.” Well, this may all be true, but; “it will be what we make of it!”

Social media can indeed be viewed as a workshop, but it doesn’t have to be just Satan’s.

No, If every Christian turned off by these abuses decided to post, share, like, and love only good things rather than walk away and be quiet, they could help make social media a better place. The simple truth is that Satan is in this world, his actions are all around us, and “we can’t make a difference if we don’t try.”

Jesus charged us to share the gospel with all the world; we are charged with planting seeds of Truth. So, when we choose to walk away from farmland that is ours to cultivate and plant, we leave only Satan planting seeds of weeds and destruction. So, rather than decide social media is not for me, rather than be quiet, why not be engaging? Simply refrain from negative comments and use your platforms to encourage and share the truths of life with Christ.

You don’t have to post articles, but you can support good ones with likes, Loves, and encouraging comments. You can share articles and memes of truth and good thoughts. Don’t take negative statements personally. They are often spewed from ignorance (hint: the seed lands on all soil types); cast it and let it grow, let God provide the growth. Jesus Himself cast numerous seeds and was rejected by some in much worse ways than a negative or hurtful comment.

Social media can be a tool to teach what scripture says rather than feelings. You can share links to sites that specialize in sharing Truths, Sites like The apologetic Press, Search of the Lord’s Way, among others whose sole purpose is to teach truth according to scripture rather than what they feel Scripture meant. I personally don’t want to gamble my soul’s eternity on what someone feels scripture meant when there is so much understanding to be had by gaining a fuller understanding of God’s Words themselves.

It is what it is, but it will be what you make of it!

God First!

We really miss out when we predetermine not to listen!

When someone disagrees with me on important issues, especially scriptural issues where we have God’s own words as a standard, it can be aggravating, however; If I am not already familiar with their position, I will still listen and research their assertions to be certain I have not misunderstood something.

I will not take offense if they disagree. If anything, I am challenged. My first assumption is not anger towards them but rather that I need to understand better the facts and reasoning behind my own position to help us both gain a better understanding.

These days the word “Offended” is popular and seems to be used to dismiss reasoning and detour discussion in place of working together to find solutions via reason and research.

In the New Testament, we read that Paul went to synagogues to reason with leaders about fulfilled prophecies of Scripture and tell them of Christ, yet many did not listen. Most likely, some were predetermined not to listen and instead took offense to what Paul demonstrated to them from scripture and explained them from his personal experience.

To me, accepting God’s Grace through obedient faith and acting on that faith is important. We can’t have obedient faith, without understanding and that comes from study and reasoning, not feelings. As Jesus puts it… “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”

God’s Word is important; Keeping God’s commands and precepts is important to our souls, our eternal life. For this reason, I persistently encourage everyone to study and reason with truth and love that we can learn together and mature in the body of Christ. We really miss out when we predetermine not to listen.

  • Acts 17 (Paul and Silas in the synagogues)
  • Acts 18 (Reasoning resisted and blasphemed)
  • John 14:15 (If you love Me…)
  • Ephesians 4:25 (We are to speak Truth with others, not avoid it)

God First!

Be sure your enemy is not; you

Throughout the Bible, we are given numerous examples of people attempting to do their own thing instead of what God asked them to do, and; we see the results.

In the following scriptures we are told not to add or take away…

  • Deuteronomy 4:2
  • Deuteronomy 12:31–32
  • Revelation 22:18-19

God’s Words are Perfect to accomplish His will! They are not written to confuse.

It takes the efforts of mankind to cause confusion, efforts that, if honestly viewed, are derived by personal desires (most likely, the most well-intended desires) or worse yet, because we think we have a better way than God.

Somehow some are convinced they are not really adding to God’s Word when they add to God’s word. They think they are just making it more interesting to pique interest and get more people to come. They have affixed themselves to the tactic that unless worship can constantly appeal to the senses, it’s boring so, it must be entertaining to get people in the door.

Maybe, with this thinking, the heart is in a well-intended place, but we need to adopt God’s way if it’s to be in the right place.

When we try to improve on worship, leadership, and structure beyond what God-breathed scripture gave us using God’s writers, examples, commands, and inferences under the New Testament. We become that which we would say; we stand against. By approving of these additions, we make ourselves liars, False Teachers, enemies of God.

In reading the warnings of these Scriptures, I would say we should treat God’s Word with the utmost respect and be ever so careful not to add or take away from them.

Jesus says; “if you love me, keep my Commandments,” which we find throughout the New Testament. All God’s commandments hinge on loving God with all our heart, soul, strength, and mind because, if we love God in this way, we will question our own desires, we will question our motives, even when they seem right in our eyes.

“For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”

Matthew 12:50
  • 1st Corinthians 14:33
  • 2 Timothy 3:16 – Gods inspired Words
  • 2 Timothy 4:3-4
  • Mark 12:30 – Greatest command
  • John 14:15–24 – “keep my Commandments.”
  • Proverbs 3:7, 21:2 – In our own eyes
  • Jude 1:1-25 – once for all delivered
  • John 14:6 – through him
  • John 5:23 – Honor Son and Father
  • John 6:38 – God Will by Jesus
  • 2 Peter 2:1-22

God First

Writer: Wayne Johnson

“Go” is an action word

“GO” is something we just can’t do by being still. Jesus said,

GO into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.

Mark 16:15

Jesus also said;

GO therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

Matthew 28:19

God First!

FAKE NEWS

Fake news is nothing new to Christians. We have been bombarded with Fake News since the beginning of Christianity. Jesus’s disciples and apostles spread the Good News of our salvation through Christ by telling of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. They established congregations all over, giving us examples of Church actions, worship, and leadership. Many of the letters we find in the New Testament are addressing “Fake News” and it continues today. Our world is full of Fake News in Christianity, but there’s good news. We don’t have to be gullible!

God has given us the means to discern the Truth from the Fake. We have 66 books of inspired words from God to study so that we can discern God’s Will, God’s teachings, through His holy word, comparing them to the desires and teachings of mankind. The answers are not found in what someone says is of God’s Word but in what God’s word actually says.

God First!

Writer: Wayne Johnson

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