Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Talk Tuesday-The Jesus Series; Happy Easter!

As we approach Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday, let us remember the agony, suffering, love and mercy of our LORD. Easter is about an all-encompassing victory over death and sin that is ours in CHRIST JESUS. All we have to do is believe and receive. Open your heart to a relationship with GOD The Father through believing in His Son JESUS, and you will receive the power of the HOLY SPIRIT. It is on the cross, that mercy triumphs over judgment, and love covers over a multitude of sins.

“Death is swallowed up in victory. '55 Death, where is your victory? Death, where is your sting?' 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin comes from the Law. 57 Thank God, then, for giving us the victory through Jesus Christ our Lord,” 1 Corinthians 15:54-57 (NJB).

The RESURRECTION gives us hope for eternal life. “11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you,” Romans 8:11 (NIV).

No matter what you are going through, trust that GOD's immense love will cover you, hold on to His promises found in the Bible and continue to pray. Freedom is ours for the taking; “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed,” John 8:36 (NIV). We at BGO are amazed at this truth. When we were lost, then we were found. “Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near,” Isaiah 55:6 (NIV). You will not be disappointed! We leave you with one final scripture as we wish you a Happy Easter!

20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. ” Rev 3:20 (NKJV)

**Thank you for joining us on our journey in the JESUS Series. We explored both the Old Testament & New Testament to discover who He is. We studied from, and referenced, both the Catholic Bible (New Jerusalem Bible, NJB) and the Protestant Bibles (New International Version, NIV; New King James Version, NKJV).**

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Talk Tuesday-The JESUS Series: Salvation, Redemption & Restoration

There is SALVATION in the name of JESUS;“12 for of all the names in the world given to men, this is the only one by which we can be saved,” Acts 4:12 (NJB).

Why did JESUS leave His heavenly dwelling to come down to earth? “14 Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage,”  Hebrews 2:14-15 (NKJV).

JESUS is fully GOD, yet fully man. It is written that JESUS, “6 Who, being in very nature God did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7 rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!” Philippians 2:6-8 (NIV)

There is REDEMPTION in the name of JESUS. “There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith,” Romans 3:22-25 (NIV).

JESUS' death means that we were redeemed. The cost of our sin is paid by His shed blood on the CROSS. We are bought back, the debt of sin is covered, our sin is atoned for. “For the wage paid by sin is death; the gift freely given by GOD is eternal life in Christ JESUS our LORD,” Romans 6:23 (NJB). 

There is RESTORATION in the name of JESUS. “3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, 'Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. 4 And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.' 5 Then He who sat on the throne said, 'Behold, I make all things new,'” Revelation 21:3-5 (NKJV).

Won't you trust JESUS today? He is calling you to come to Him. He freely offers you the gift of life-eternal life. Join us next week as we conclude the JESUS Series with the Easter Message!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Talk Tuesday-The JESUS Series; Son of God & Son of Man; High Priest & Sacrifice

As we prepare to celebrate Easter, here are some powerful truths we can meditate on. JESUS, is the Son of GOD: “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation,” Colossians 1:15 (NKJV). “16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life,” John 3:16 (NKJV). JESUS is also the Son of Man: “28 ...the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many,” Matthew 20:28 (NIV).

JESUS is the sacrifice: “10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins,” 1 John 4:10 (NIV). JESUS is also the High Priest: “23 Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; 24 but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood.  25 Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them,” Hebrews 7:23-25 (NIV).

The earthly Tabernacle was merely a representation of what is in heaven. The Day of Atonement merely foreshadowed The Crucifixion:

24 For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence. 25 Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. 26 Otherwise Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But he has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. Hebrews 9:24-28 (NIV).

When we began the JESUS Series we looked at The Fall of Mankind, The Passover, The Lamb of GOD, Blood and Sacrifice, The Tabernacle, and The Day of Atonement. These all lead up to the Crucifixion and the Resurrection. Join us next week as we prepare our hearts to celebrate the most profound act of love and the greatest victory given to all mankind! We leave you with three words: Salvation, Redemption & Restoration.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Talk Tuesday-The JESUS Series; The Cross, The Tabernacle and The Day of Atonement, Pt II

The Day of Atonement foreshadows the Crucifixion. “30 For on that day the priest shall make atonement for you, to cleanse you, that you may be clean from all your sins before the Lord,” Leviticus 16:30 (NKJV). Of the five animals that were required, three were reserved to deal with the issue of SIN; the two remaining rams were for burnt-offerings.

Before the High Priest could mediate, his sin had to be atoned for. “11 Aaron shall bring the bull for his own sin offering to make atonement for himself and his household, and he is to slaughter the bull for his own sin offering,” Leviticus 16:11 (NIV). Afterwards, he could enter behind the veil into the Most Holy Place with a censer filled with live coals and incense. “13 He will then put the incense on the fire before Yahweh, so that the cloud of incense hides the mercy-seat which is on the Testimony and he does not incur death,” Leviticus 16:13 (NJB).

Blood from the bull was then sprinkled on the mercy seat (also known as the atonement cover) which lay on top of the Ark of the Covenant. The goat for the sin offering of the people was then sacrificed. It's blood was also brought inside the veil, and sprinkled on the mercy seat. The blood of the bull and the goat was then brought outside and put on the altar of sacrifice. “20 When Aaron has finished making atonement for the Most Holy Place, the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall bring forward the live goat,” Leviticus 16:20 (NIV). This live goat became a scapegoat, bearing away the guilt of the people.

“21 Aaron will then lay both his hands on its head and over it confess all the guilt of the Israelites, all their acts of rebellion and all their sins. Having thus laid them on the goat's head, he will send it out into the desert under the charge of a man waiting ready, 22 and the goat will bear all their guilt away into some desolate place,” Leviticus 16:21-22 (NJB).

When JESUS cried out, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which is translated, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” Mark 15:34 (NKJV), he bore all our sins as the scapegoat. GOD turned His face away from him at that very moment, as SIN cannot exist in the presence of a Holy GOD. Jesus experienced utter desolation on our behalf. When He declared, “It is finished,” John 19:30 (NIV), salvation, redemption, atonement, purification, restoration and a hope of eternity burst into existence. “37 But Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last. 38 And the veil of the Sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom,” Mark 15:37-28 (NJB). When the curtain was torn, it meant that we now had direct access into the Most Holy Place, the Presence of GOD, by the blood JESUS. That is why John the Baptist declared, "Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!" John 1:29 (NKJV).