A Christmas Exam


Nan has again asked me to share some thoughts this holiday season. Since we are thinking about Christmas, it’s a perfect occasion to evaluate our relationship with our Lord.

Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

Luke 2:10-11

Is Jesus “IN” You?

Do you ever find yourself worried that you might not really know the Savior, Jesus Christ? This is a good time to focus on that question. It is not enough for you to believe that there is a God, even the demons believe that much (James 2:19). It is not enough to just recite the right words, either. This is the real question; “Is Jesus Christ in me?” 

Examine yourself and honestly, privately determine if you are in the faith. The Apostle Paul wrote,

Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?

2 Corinthians 13:5a

Can you describe a particular point in time when you understood at some level what happened at the cross? Did you accept what God accomplished there for you?

Did things change for you after that? The change may have been dramatic or it might have been very quiet, but was there a change? Did you begin to interact with Jesus? Did you begin to live your life differently after this relationship began?

Go back to those words in Luke, chapter 2, and let them really sink in:

Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”

If you want to know more about this wonderful Savior, you might want to go to our website at www.salvation.kingshighway.org. This is a great way to start this Christmas season. May God richly bless you as He answers your questions.

Living Soberly, Righteously and Godly

Now, if you are in the faith, praise God! Believing in Jesus is the first step in the new life that God has for us.

Let’s continue the self examination we started by hearing more from Paul.

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ...

Titus 2:11-13

Unfortunately, there are far too many in the church who do not live “soberly, righteously, and godly.” They know that Jesus is in them, but thoughts of His “glorious appearing” hardly affect their lives.

If this describes your life, The Kingdom, Power & Glory is especially intended to help you become sound in the faith. There are many “new” things brought out in this book, so understand that it is not light reading. It needs to be studied and considered prayerfully, but the fresh perspective you find there makes it hard to put the book down. Go slowly enough so that you can reassess some of your assumptions about what the Scripture says. Pray so that you will be open to the Holy Spirit’s guidance.

Give close attention to the second section in the book; the one titled, “The Power.” This section gives practical instruction about walking with Christ day by day.

Learning How to Be an Overcomer

If you read The Kingdom, Power & Glory but don’t learn how to be an overcomer of the flesh, your time will have been wasted and a precious opportunity lost.

That last point needs to be emphasized because we tend to get caught up in the details of the end times (such as in the first section of the book) without seeing how it applies to us today. Filling our minds with constant speculations about prophecy may appear to be spiritual, but by itself, it is carnal thinking that produces none of the fruit of the Spirit.

Now, for those who carry “the blessed hope” wherever they go, and there are many of you, be encouraged. The Bible tells us that there is great benefit in being purified by Him, and zealous for His good works. This begins when we love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. We are to continually say, “Not my will, but Yours.” If we do so, we will reap good from the things that we have sown.

We will know the peace of God. We will go from strength to strength, and God will use us in more difficult places. We will become more and more familiar with God’s ways and how He has specifically designed each of us to help those who cross our paths. We will be more and more conformed to the image of Christ Jesus, and be-gin to stumble less than we did in the past.

This is a process. We are not perfect, but as we deal with our sin by repeatedly going to Jesus via the cross, we will become increasingly freer to reflect Christ in every aspect of our lives. We may quench the Holy Spirit and grieve God at times, but as we confess our sins and turn away from them, we will become the “overcomers” that He desires. That’s what Jesus had in mind when He arrived in Bethlehem. So, start this Christmas time by examining the state of your relationship with Him.

Then come, let us adore Him!

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for our sakes He be-came poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.

2 Corinthians 8:9