Monday, July 11, 2011

What Does It Mean to Serve G-d?

You cannot serve G-d and Satan at the same time. You will either prefer sin while claiming to live for G-d, or you will hold on to your sinful lifestyle while openly despising G-d.

You cannot serve both G-d and money. This does not mean that G-d wants you to be poor, or not have nice things. It means you need to put G-d first in your life. One way you can put Him first is by tithing (giving a percentage of your income) to your home congregation/synagogue/church.

No one can serve two masters. Either you will *hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
Matthew 6:24

*The word hate here signifies to love less in the original Greek.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Is There a Condition for Gaining G*d’s Forgiveness?

In the book of Matthew Yeshua/Jesus says, “14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”

Why would the L*rd make such a profound statement about forgiveness?

Yeshua/Jesus paid a huge price for your forgiveness of sins. He didn’t pay with money or jail time; He paid with His life. G*d sacrificed His only Son for your sins so you could be forgiven. Father G*d asks us to offer forgiveness to those who have wronged us.

Forgiving those who have done us wrong allows us to be released from the burden of bitterness, anger, and torment that comes with unforgiveness. Forgiving helps us to heal of the pain of the offense and move to the freedom of letting go.

When we accept Yeshua/Jesus’ sacrifice and forgiveness that He offers us from the cross, G*d forgets our past sins. We become new, forgiven creations in Messiah. We get a fresh start.

When we forgive those who have offended us, we are free to set aside those painful memories and move forward with our lives. Free in Messiah is free indeed.

G*d’s sacrifice is great, but the benefit to us is also great. Is it too much for Him to ask us to forgive others? In asking us to do so might He be leading us toward our own personal healing?

Friday, July 1, 2011

Giving Above our Tithe: Giving to the Poor

The Lord expects us to give to the poor and to those in need. We are to give out of compassion and not for self glorification. Let your charitable giving be for the sake of those in need, to glorify G-d—not yourself. Don’t make a big show of it so as to try to make people think you are a good person—for example, because you volunteer at the homeless shelter, or donate to the food bank. That does no good for you. Instead, be humble when you give. The Lord knows what you are doing, and He will reward you for your good deeds.

There is no need to seek the approval of men by showing off when you give—to do is not only arrogant and prideful, but it also shows a lack of self esteem, and the desire for the approval of others. It is much more important to have G-d’s approval, and His blessing. He blesses us so we can bless others. He approves of you.

But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, Matthew 6:3