A mechanic, who was a great Christian, was always singing “Amazing Grace.” He owned a dog named “Maze” that was continually eating grass. At one time the good man lost a wrench in tall grass. Fortunately for him, his dog ate the grass and the wrench was found, causing the Christian mechanic to throw up his hands and begin to sing: “A grazing Maze—how sweet the hound, that found the wrench for me.”
On a serious note, grace is amazing for three good reasons: (1) It is the grace of God that provides salvation (2) His grace enables us to live victoriously in the midst of troubles, tears, and temptations (3) His grace will be sufficient at the time of death. No wonder we Christians sing: “Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, That saved a wretch like me…. I once was lost but now am found, Was blind, but now, I see.” Paul put it just right with these words from Ephesians 2:8, “For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.”
Pat Loftin has served as a Baptist minister for some 62 years and resides in Epps, LA where he has been the husband of Kathy for 59 years, the father of 3, grandfather of 6 and great-grandfather of 3 more. His hobbies include fishing but his passion is for preaching, teaching and writing. To contact Bro. Pat Loftin, you may email him through our contact page here
In light of God’s love for us, there is no excuse for being a Christian hypocrite. Let’s live for Jesus!
from Charisma News
The symbolism is powerful. For eight days in December, we take one candle called the servant candle and light eight other candles. In the same way, Yeshua came as a servant and gave us light.
In Israel being a light can be scary. You never know how someone will react to your faith. On Christmas Eve, when 20-year-old Shai Sol testified of her faith in Yeshua before the whole country, every believer in Israel was challenged and encouraged.
In a word, the evangelistic message is the gospel of Christ and Him crucified, the message of man’s sin and God’s grace, of human guilt and divine forgiveness, of new birth and new life through the gift of
the Holy Spirit. It is a message made up of four essential ingredients.
1. The gospel is a message about God. It tells us who He is, what His character is, what His standards are, and what He requires of us, His creatures. It tells us that we owe our very existence to Him; that for good or ill, we are always in His hands and under His eye; and that He made us to worship and serve Him, to show forth His praise and to live for His glory. These truths are the foundation of theistic religion; and until they are grasped, the rest of the gospel message will seem neither cogent nor relevant. It is here with the assertion of man’s complete and constant dependence on his Creator that the Christian story starts.
We can learn again from Paul at this point. When preaching to Jews, as at Pisidian Antioch, he did not need to mention the fact that men were God’s creatures. He could take this knowledge for granted, for his hearers had the Old Testament faith behind them. He could begin at once to declare Christ to them as the fulfillment of Old Testament hopes. But when preaching to Gentiles, who knew nothing of the Old Testament, Paul had to go further back and start from the beginning. And the beginning from which Paul started in such cases was the doctrine of God’s Creatorship and man’s creaturehood. So, when the Athenians asked him to explain what his talk of Jesus and the resurrection was all about, he spoke to them first of God the Creator and what He made man for. “God…made the world…seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made…all nations…that they should seek the Lord” (Act 17:24-27). This was not, as some have supposed, a piece of philosophical apologetic of a kind that Paul afterwards renounced, but the first and basic lesson in theistic faith. The gospel starts by teaching us that we, as creatures, are absolutely dependent on God, and that He, as Creator, has an absolute claim on us. Only when we have learned this can we see what sin is, and only when we see what sin is can we understand the good news of salvation from sin. We must know what it means to call God Creator before we can grasp what it means to speak of Him as Redeemer. Nothing can be achieved by talking about sin and salvation where this preliminary lesson has not in some measure been learned.