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Because of the glorious Lord Jesus Christ, true life now—and eternal life forever—is yours to know and enjoy. What the Scripture reveals about Him is worth more than all knowledge, all riches, and all happiness in this world.
Lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:19-21
One of the most difficult things for the Jews of our Lord’s day to understand is how the Messiah could be both a glorious king of Israel and the world and yet also be a rejected, suffering Servant. The understanding of messiahship by this point was rather diverse. Some felt that the two strands of imagery were so divergent that they had to be referring to two distinct individuals. Of course, others believed that the Messiah’s work was primarily ethno-political and centered upon the exaltation of Israel over its military oppressors, with all ethnic Jews as the victors and all Gentiles doomed. Most interestingly, until Jewish Christians began proclaiming that Jesus was the Servant of Isaiah 53, it was very common to view that passage as in some sense referring to a messianic individual who suffered as a substitute. Only after the identification of Jesus with that personage did the rabbis rather aggressively make a course-correction and assert that the servant was either the nation of Israel or Isaiah himself (and interestingly, to this day Isaiah 53 is not read in Jewish synagogues). Read more
Surely how we answer the question “Who is Jesus?” is of greatest importance. The answer we give determines not merely the course of life—for the answer and its implications govern all our thinking, choices, affections, worldview, and responses to life’s circumstances—but certainly our eternal destiny. On the great final day of our Lord, when all humanity stands before Him to be judged, all will be guilty of capital crimes against the God of heaven. All will be rebels. None of their works are sufficient to be the ground of acceptance by a holy God. Yet innumerable millions will be acquitted, declared righteous, and vindicated as God’s chosen people despite their rebellion and the mocking rejection of a fallen universe—why? Because, by God’s sovereign grace alone, these have had their eyes opened and with genuine (though always imperfect) faith laid hold of the only right way to answer the most important question. Read more
Often in the book of Proverbs, the wise believer is commended as one who has insight into God’s world and His truth. Frequently, the word used for this is translated “discernment,” which carries the idea of having a penetrating insight into the nature of something, often with the intent to tell good from evil. Additionally, the “eye” in Proverbs is often the organ of spiritual perception and discernment, in that one is not merely seeing physically, but using the eyes (in both physical and metaphorical senses) to have insight into God’s truth and spiritual reality. Read more
The great call of God in both the Old and New Testaments is to believe Him. God chose Israel that they might know and believe Him (Isa. 43:10). Jehoshaphat encouraged the people of Jerusalem to “believe in the LORD your God, and you will be able to stand firm; believe His prophets [His Word!] and you will succeed” (2 Chron. 20:20). Paul tells the Thessalonians that God’s Word does its work in those who believe (1 Thess. 2:13), the Ephesians that God has incomparably great power for us who believe (Eph. 1:19a). And, of course, we must add the many passages that describe Christians primarily as believers—people who believe what God has said and who He is (cf. Rom. 10:11; 1 Cor. 1:21, 9:5, 14:22; Gal. 3:22; 1 Thess. 1:7; 2 Thess. 1:10; 1 Tim. 3:16, 4:12; 1 Pet. 1:21). Read more
The most sobering reality in a fallen world is the judgment of God. Far from the simpering, therapeutic, effeminate God of contemporary American culture (and much of diseased modern evangelicalism), the God of Scripture is gloriously holy and just and insists upon punishing sin. He is also love and loveliness’s essence, and so offers a way out of the appointed judgment for all who will repent and trust the Savior. But for all who will not come to Him that they may have life (John 5:40), the Lord has only conscious hellfire forever. Read more