Tag Archive | salvation

Psalm 107

I urge you to read this Psalm sometime today…for within the 43 verses, you’ll see yourself portrayed somewhere.  For this passage tells of those who wander and are lost.  It tells of being in desperate situations…places that invoke  feelings of anxiety, depression, and hopelessness.  There are the lost – those who are wandering alone in the wilderness.  There are the guilty – those who are slaves to sin and full of shame and self-loathing.  There are the fools – godless ones being deceived by the world.  Finally, there are the tossed – those who have been battered by life’s storms.  But in all these situations, when they cried out to God for help, He answered.   So despite what you’re going through today… God is there,  ready and willing to help you.

Psalm 67: 1-2 ” May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face shine upon us, that Your ways may be known on earth, Your salvation among all nations.”

When people look at you, what do they see?  Do they see Jesus smiling back at them  from behind your eyes?  You can’t help but do this if you have a firm grip on just how kind and gracious God has been to you.  If you really understand the depth of God’s favor and protection…His plan and purpose for your life…the victory over sin and death He has afforded you…how can you do anything but manifest His love through you?

Matthew 16:26 ” What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? “

For many, they’re playing a version of the old game show, “Lets Make a Deal” with God.  They’re bartering “good works and deeds” in hopes it will get them a free pass into heaven.  Or they’re pinning their eternal hope on the shirt-tails of a Believing Grandparent.  Neither will work…for there is no earthly commodity that exists that’s a fair exchange for our soul.  We can’t trade anything we have for the free gift of salvation Jesus offers us…and no amount of good deeds will get us any closer to heaven.  So the answer to the question, “What can a man give in exchange for his soul?” is simple…there is nothing.

Matthew 16:25 ” For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for Me will find it.”

It tells us in John 12:25 that, “The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.”   Everyday is a struggle, where our affections are pulled one way or the other.  The glitter and lure of the world is great, with its promises of immediate gratification and unending ecstasy.  But the cold hard truth is that our excessive fondness for things of the world will only  lead us down a path to self-destruction and death.  For the world tells us to live today to the fullest… to eat, drink, and be merry, with no regard for tomorrow.   But the Lord tells us that there is life beyond the grave, and that the world is blinding us from this truth.   If  I want to save my life, I must lose it in the person of Jesus Christ…I must turn my focus and  affections from the temporal to the eternal…from the fleeting to the everlasting.

Psalm 142: 1-2 ” I cry aloud to the Lord; I lift up my voice to the Lord for mercy. I pour out my complaint before Him; before Him I tell my trouble.”

I used to be a long distance runner…and during those hours on the back roads, I’d yell at God.  At the time,  I was in the middle of a very personal hell and wanted God to know just how scared and powerless I felt.  In my head, I knew the Lord was well aware of the situation…but in my heart, I needed to verbalize the pain.  Baring my soul out loud to God was a way I could express feelings I had never spoken to anyone…no one.  Putting words to  pent-up fear and terror helped me gain perspective.  By listening to my own words of anguish, my plight was somehow validated within me.  Yes, I yelled at God, but He quietly listened to every word I spilled out…every inner most feelings I couldn’t tell anyone else.  For God was there and He listened…He didn’t judge or admonish…He listened.

I Chronicles 16:23 ” Sing to the Lord, all the earth; proclaim His salvation day after day.”

When was the last time you actually thanked God for saving you?  When was the last time you expressed profound gratitude and appreciation  for delivering your soul from the guilt and punishment of sin?  If it’s been a while, then take the time right now to stop and thank Him.  But as important… when was the last time you told someone else about Jesus?   Isaiah 52:7 exclaims, “How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!”  Telling someone the Good News of Jesus isn’t hard if you can imagine it this way…you’re simply a beggar telling another beggar where they can get bread.

I Corinthians 9:22 “…I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some.”

Here the Apostle Paul was showing that he sought to find common ground with whoever he met…whether Jew, Christian, slave, master, weak, or strong in the faith…in order  to preach the Gospel to all.  Unfortunately as a people, we generally  look for petty differences and disagreements than seek out things that we share.  But if we would take the time to think about it, we have much more in common with each other than we can disagree about.  Finding common ground with one another can also be easier if we ask ourselves this question first…In the eternal scheme of things, does this matter?  Sure, there’s some non-negotiables…but really, the vast majority of stuff we fight about makes no difference at all.