What Does It Mean to Be Blessed by God?

11 Jul 2016

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We’ve all heard someone say, “I’ve been blessed by God,” usually in relation to success, health, family, wealth, or a job. We’ve even heard athletes say this after winning a big game. We all want to be under God’s blessing.

The common understanding of what it means to be blessed by God is that He gives us good things. In this respect, we can say that God’s blessing is on everyone, believers and unbelievers alike. Matthew 5:45 says that the Father who is in the heavens causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the just and unjust.

But does God’s blessing pertain only to material things? Though these are included, thinking of God’s blessing as mainly material things severely limits our understanding of what is in God’s heart for us as believers. So what is the fuller meaning of being blessed by God?

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The Life and Power of the Resurrected Christ

06 Jul 2016

“The resurrected Christ is unlimited. Apply Him to the situation. He can never be exhausted. By the power of the resurrected Christ you can follow the steps of the incarnated Jesus. With the life of the resurrected Christ, you can live out the life of the limited Jesus.”

From The All-Inclusive Christ by Witness Lee (mass-distribution ed., p. 52). Bibles for America gives this book away for free. You can order your free copy here. You can also download a free PDF version here.

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The Faithfulness and Righteousness of God

29 Jun 2016

1 John 1:9—“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Note 2 on faithful and righteous says: “God is faithful in His word (v. 10) and righteous in the blood of Jesus His Son (v. 7). His word is the word of the truth of His gospel (Eph. 1:13), which tells us that He will forgive us our sins because of Christ (Acts 10:43); and the blood of Christ has fulfilled His righteous requirements that He might forgive us our sins (Matt. 26:28). If we confess our sins, He, according to His word and based on the redemption through the blood of Jesus, forgives us because He must be faithful in His word and righteous in the blood of Jesus; otherwise, He would be unfaithful and unrighteous. Our confession is needed for His forgiveness. Such forgiveness of God, which is for the restoration of our fellowship with Him, is conditional; it depends on our confession.”

Cross-reference “b” on faithful and righteous directs us to the following verses:

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The Best Time of Day to Spend with the Lord Jesus

27 Jun 2016

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Scenario 1: You hear the alarm go off, roll out of bed, and start to get ready, already anxious about the day ahead. During a hurried breakfast, you catch up on news, texts, and email. Eventually you set off, preoccupied with your to-do list.

Scenario 2: You hear the alarm go off and begin your day by saying, “Lord Jesus, I love You.” You get up and spend time to talk with the Lord in prayer and to read His Word. Refreshed and nourished by His Word, you feel strengthened and supplied for the day’s challenges. You eat breakfast and head out.

We’d probably all prefer the second scenario. Our spiritual life would benefit greatly and perhaps change dramatically if we made a habit of starting our day with the Lord. But building up any habit takes more than fleeting inspiration; it helps if we see the reasons why it’s worthwhile. Let’s look at three.

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The Inner Feeling of the Lord

22 Jun 2016

“Life does not make decisions according to outward standards of right and wrong. Matters should be decided according to the sense of God’s life or the sense of death. Decisions should be made according to God’s life as it rises up or recedes within us. No Christian should say that he can do something because it is good or right. We must ask the Lord within us. What is the inner feeling that the Lord gives? Do we feel joyful inwardly about this matter? Do we have spiritual happiness and peace? These are the matters that decide our spiritual path.”

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Two Aspects of Christ’s Death

15 Jun 2016

John 19:34—“But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately there came out blood and water.”

Note 1 on blood and water says: “Two substances came out of the Lord’s pierced side: blood and water. Blood is for redemption, to deal with sins (1:29; Heb. 9:22) for the purchasing of the church (Acts 20:28). Water is for imparting life, to deal with death (12:24; 3:14-15) for the producing of the church (Eph. 5:29-30). The Lord’s death, on the negative side, takes away our sins, and on the positive side, imparts life into us. Hence, it has two aspects: the redemptive aspect and the life-imparting aspect. The redemptive aspect is for the life-imparting aspect…” [Click here to read the rest of this wonderful note.]”

The verse and note are from the Recovery Version, published by Living Stream Ministry. The Recovery Version outlines, footnotes, and cross-references were all prepared by Witness Lee. Bibles for America gives away the New Testament Recovery Version for free. You can order your free copy here.

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A Question about the Unforgivable Sin

13 Jun 2016

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We received the comment and questions below from someone who read our post, “Can You Lose Your Salvation?”:

“I am so glad that I was able to find this article. I know that God’s decisions cannot be changed and that He holds us in His hands. Yet I still feel insecure about my salvation. Can you please answer these questions: Is the unforgivable sin not accepting Jesus as Savior? Can a Christian commit the ‘unforgivable sin’ talked about in Mark 3:28-29?”

We thought our reply might be helpful to others who have these questions, so we’re posting it here on the blog.

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Created to Contain God

08 Jun 2016

“Man was created not merely to contain food in his stomach, or to contain knowledge in his mind, but to contain God in his spirit (Eph. 5:18).”

From Basic Elements of the Christian Life, vol. 1, by Witness Lee and Watchman Nee (mass-distribution ed., p. 7). Bibles for America gives this book away for free. You can order your free copy here. You can also download a free PDF version here.

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The Faith of Jesus Christ

01 Jun 2016

Romans 3:22—“Even the righteousness of God through the faith of Jesus Christ to all those who believe, for there is no distinction.”

Note 1 on faith of Jesus Christ says: “Faith has an object, and it issues from its object. This object is Jesus, who is God incarnate. When man hears Him, knows Him, appreciates Him, and treasures Him, He causes faith to be generated in man, enabling man to believe in Him. Thus, He becomes the faith in man by which man believes in Him. Hence, this faith becomes the faith in Him, and it is also the faith that belongs to Him.”

The verse and note are from the Recovery Version, published by Living Stream Ministry. The Recovery Version outlines, footnotes, and cross-references were all prepared by Witness Lee. Bibles for America gives away the New Testament Recovery Version for free. You can order your free copy here.

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Lost and Found

30 May 2016

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How did I get here? The young man took a long look at his life. He was penniless, homeless, filthy, and starving. You would never know that he had once lived under the loving care of his wealthy father.

But he had left home, cut off his relationship with his father, squandered his inheritance on a life of sin, and ended up in this pitiful state. He finally came to his senses, and a deep feeling welled up in him: I need to go back to my father. But he was so ashamed. After all he had done, he wondered whether his father would even want him as a son anymore. In desperation, he decided he would return home and ask to be a servant.

He was unaware of the depth of his father’s love. Little did he know that his father had been longing for him, waiting and watching for the day he would return. As the young man made his way home, his father spotted him, even when he was still a long way off, and ran to him, embraced him, and kissed him affectionately.

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